Posts Tagged ‘books’

Says it all

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The Millions polled its readers on the top novels and compared it to a list of Pros. I was very pleased to see my personal favourite Out Stealing Horses appear in the Panel’s list. It seldom appears in these lists and it totally deserves to.

I also enjoy Oscar Wao (first on the readers list) but not as much as Out Stealing. The lists contain many good books. Read them.


For reading recommendations Bookseer rules. I recommend it.


The Guardian published its “1000 novels you have to read” here <link>. The classification was a little confusing. Fortunately Planet Zero re-ordered them into alphabetical order <link>.

Here are some of my favourites that are on the list and that I’d recommend:

  • Douglas Adams, Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy
  • Pat Barker, Regeneration
  • Paul Bowles, Sheltering Sky
  • William Boyd, Any Human Heart
  • Michael Chabon, Amazing Cavalier and Clay
  • Raymond Chandler, The Big Sleep
  • Jeffrey Eugenides, Middlesex
  • Sebastian Faulks, Birdsong
  • Nick Hornby, High Fidelity
  • Harper Lee, To Kill a Mockingbird
  • Gabriel García Márquez, Love in the Time of Cholera
  • Cormac McCarthy, All the Pretty Horses
  • Patrick Suüskind, Perfume
  • Tolkein, The Hobbit

I was also pleased to see Tintin and Asterix on the list.

If I took the time I’m sure I could add some, both old and new, but I’m not going to be picky. It’s a great reading list.

Things made out of books


Now I’ve gone and done it. My blog stats prove that posting about book furniture in all its shape and forms doesn’t drive visitors. I can’t resist. But this time the post is about things made out of books not things that hold books <links>. Enjoy (please).

Wallpaper like this would save me having to build those shelves and buy all those books. Second thoughts I’ll buy the books.

Here’s the full collection <link>.  Thanks girl in the green dress <link>

If you have to spend 5 hours and 26 minutes squeezed onto a flight from New York to Seattle then I highly recommend Mister Pip by Lloyd Jones <link>. The book didn’t last the whole flight but it certainly transported me to another place faster than the plane. It’s a moving young girl’s story set on the island of Bougainville in the South Pacific and was shortlisted for the 2007 Man Booker Prize. Jones is an established New Zealand author.

Throughout you really feel Jones’ love of books and the pleasure of reading.

“… you cannot pretend to read a book. Your eyes will give you away. So will your breathing. A person entranced in a book forgets to breathe. The house can catch alight and a reader deep in a book will not look up until the wallpaper is in flames.”

“… the one book that supplied me with another world at a time when it was desperately needed… it taught me that you can slip under the skin of another just as easily as your own, even when that skin is white and belongs to a boy alive in Dickens’ England. Now if that isn’t magic I don’t know what is.”

 “his survival weapon was a story.”

Which when I read this reminded me of someone who did that over a thousand years ago. Meet Scheherazade.


Scheherazade is the narrator of 1001 Arabian nights. She told stories to save her own life and the lives of other women the King would have killed.

Get Mister Pip, it’s great.

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