Wednesday, July 01, 2020

Books read in June

Kerry Smith always posts the books she's read each month as do a few other bloggers. This was the most books I have read in a month in some time. Perhaps it is because I am not writing very much. I am trying to start a memoir although I have no experience in writing one. So far I am mostly writing history rather than my history. Anyway these are the books I read. Reading the NYT takes me an hour most days. I can't remember that in the past.


Poet of Tolstoy Park, Sonny Brewer

Strangers on a Train, Patricia Highsmith

These Hills Are Made of Gold, Pam Zhang

Eight Perfect Murders, Peter Swanson

Nothing to See Here, Kevin Wilson

Born a Crime, Trevor Noah

Between Them, Remembering My Parents, Richard Ford

 Two crime novels, one old, one new; two memoirs; three mainstream novels. I also read some scattered short stories. And I started at least four books I gave up on. I started one last night and gave up after 25 pages. It's usually the voice with me--just can't picture spending time with that person. Or the setting-in this case the Chicago World's Fair-I've been there already with Erik Larson (Devil in the White City). I will try it again in daytime. Sometime that has an affect on my reading.

How often do you put a book aside and then return to it?


Jeff Meyerson said...

It happens occasionally. Sometimes it is like you said, you think, do I really want to spend 400 pages with this person? Other times, the book is just too dark and nasty and I think, do I want to read 500 pages of this? Of course, in those cases I am not likely to go back to it, but occasionally it is a series I read. For instance, I had a hard time getting interested in the last Peter Robinson book (Many Rivers to Cross) and eventually had to return it to the library. But I did get it again and finish it (and no, I didn't like it any better - the whole human trafficking thing is getting old).

You do better than me with the variety of things you read. I've been reading a lot more science fiction (only certain kinds) in recent years, as my mystery reading has dropped, mostly to regular authors. I do still read a short story a day (I read 44 in June). Very little non fiction these days, other than everything I read in the three newspapers we get online every day.

George said...

I try to select books I know I'll like to avoid this situation. But, if I get to page 50 and the book hasn't connected with me, I bail out. Too many books, too little time.

Steve Oerkfitz said...

Not very often. I usually am a pretty good judge of what I'll like. Recent disappointments were The Glass Hotel by Emily St. John Mandel who wrote the wonderful Station 18. I bailed after about 70 pages. And a well reviewed fantasy novel called Gideon the Ninth had such an obnoxious lead character I couldn't image reading over 400 pages of this.
Sorry you didn't like the Elizabeth Hand.

Kent Morgan said...

More and more often I give up on a book. The latest was the second in the Sam Acquillo series by Chris Knopf, Two Time. I had liked the first book, which I read years ago. I followed it with Sean Chercover's first PI novel, Bad City, Bad Blood, and nearly gave up on it, but struggled through. Last night I started The Cactus League, a novel set in Arizona during baseball spring training that has received great reviews. But I plan to take a Peter May UK crime novel and a couple of non-fiction books with me to our cottage on Lake Winnipeg just in case. Today is Canada Day.

pattinase (abbott) said...

Hi Kent! How about you? I almost posted an old review of yours on FFB last week. I like Peter May. Happy Canada Day and be glad to live there.

pattinase (abbott) said...

I probably shouldn't have started it at midnight. It might have affected me.

pattinase (abbott) said...

Jeff-Is most of the shorts you read from anthologies? Are they crime? All sorts of things.
And yes, George life is too short and I am a promiscuous book chooser but a fussy book reader.

Jeff Meyerson said...

Some collections are anthologies, some are single author. Recent single author: Joe Hill, James Sallis, Art Taylor, currently Ray Garton. Anthologies: Flight or Fright (Stephen King), Lady on the Case (Muller & Pronzini), currently The Big Book of Reel Murders (Otto Penzler). Most are mysteries, some horror. But also have read more straight fiction stories.

TracyK said...

I hardly ever put a book aside. Usually I know (hope) a book will interest me to get through it.

With a lot of nonfiction books I start reading, then set it aside, knowing it will be a book that I will read over time. In most cases that is not a good way to read them and it does take forever to finish them. But I don't read much nonfiction.

pattinase (abbott) said...

I admire sticking to it. I may have done that in my younger days but now I am always thinking, I could be reading something I will like more. Probably a week or a month later, I would have stuck with it.

Margot Kinberg said...

You have a nice reading list there, Patti. I've had a few experiences putting a book aside and then coming back to it. Sometimes it's time issues, and sometimes it's because I feel that it's not the right time for a particular book. It doesn't happen too often to me, but it has happened.

Gerard Saylor said...

Over the past couple weeks I bailed out on Johnny Marr's autobiography and the GORMENGHAST novel. Marr is a guitarist and in The Smiths. I'm sure there are greatly interesting stories in there but I'm just not getting into it.

I've been reading BLOOD AND CINDERS after Anthony Neil Smith plugged it. I like the novel quite a bit and am surprised I did not finish it yet. Set in 1949 London about a motorcycle speedway team. The security guy for the stadium looks into an accident and keeps digging into more trouble. Reminded me of the film HELL DRIVERS (1957) but London is still filled with rubble, widows, aimless children, and war veterans starting over.

pattinase (abbott) said...

A motorcycle speedway team. Hard to imagine there is a big audience for it given that reading and racing seem so far apart.

Todd Mason said...

Never assume. My father was an auto racer in his youth. Sometimes, in cross-country racing, with my mother as navigator. They both were readers, my father voraciously. My parens did some cycling, but never liked that as much.