April reading round-up

A Lady Reading by Sir Francis Seymour Haden
(Sir Francis Seymour Haden, 1858)

After a slow start to the year, this month I really hit my reading stride. I not only finished six books, but I’m also partway through two more that I’m thoroughly enjoying. (I should add that one of those is The Luminaries by Eleanor Catton, which is more than 800 pages long, so next month’s round-up might not look quite so healthy!)

I was perhaps helped in my reading by the fact that I inadvertently installed malware on my laptop, which put it out of commission for a couple of weeks (beware fake software updates, people). As I hate browsing the Web on my phone and felt weird using Tim’s giant laptop, I read instead. It was nice, and possibly habit-forming, so apologies to all those websites I usually visit and comment on regularly! Even now my laptop is back and better than ever (Tim kindly reinstalled everything and upgraded parts while he was at it, because he’s nice like that) I actually don’t want to be on the Internet right now, I want to be reading one of the several books scattered on the sofa next to me.

One quick last note: libraries are great, aren’t they? I went to Bristol Central Library during my lunch hour today and was reminded how much I like them. I only go a couple of times a year because, well, giant TBR and all. But for those times when you’re interested in a book but don’t know if you’ll love it, or want the latest in a series without paying for a hardback, or want to learn a little about a subject the old-fashioned way, you can’t beat a good library. Do you use libraries?

Books read

The Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank (review here)

The Last Seven Months of Anne Frank by Willy Lindwer (review here)

Just a Geek by Wil Wheaton

Instructions for a Heatwave by Maggie O’Farrell (review here)

Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad (review here)

Machine Man by Max Barry (review to follow)

Short stories read

“The cemetery where Al Jolson is buried” by Amy Hempel (Selected Shorts podcast)

“The night in question” by Tobias Wolff (Selected Shorts podcast)

“I know what I’m doing about all the attention I’ve been getting” by Frank Gannon (Selected Shorts podcast)

“The night the ghost got in” by James Thurber (Selected Shorts podcast)

“Examining the evidence” by Alice Hoffman (Selected Shorts podcast)

“It had wings” by Allan Gurganus (Selected Shorts podcast)

“Secondhand man” by Rita Dove (Selected Shorts podcast)

“The relive box” by T Coraghessan Boyle (New Yorker, Mar 17, 2014)

How was your reading month? Read anything especially good?