I’m a serial book buyer and, regrettably, in the past, a serial half-book reader.
Every few months I’d buy a new pile of books, with every intention of becoming a “reader”. I’d start one, before abandoning it in my busy schedule and forgetting about it for a few weeks. By the time I fancied reading again, I’d be out of the loop and, instead of skimming through the book to refresh myself, I’d just start another one.
By the end of the year I’d be surrounded by piles of half-read, discarded books. Partially explored worlds, characters and stories (that I’d begun to enjoy but that had lost out to the ease of switching off to a Netflix binge) lay abandoned on the shelf, gathering dust.
This year, however, instead of wasting time on social media or watching telly, I’ll be making a conscious effort to spend more of my downtime with a book. Reading leaves me not only relaxed, but also inspired and energised, making it the perfect break activity between getting work done.
New(ish) To My Reading List
I’m currently racing through The Bees by Laline Paull, a book that I’ve stopped and started more than once. The fact though that I was interested enough to pick this book up multiple times and reread it again and again is testament to the fantastic writing and compelling story it tells. A stunning marriage of biology and fantasy, The Bees transports you inside a beehive as you follow Flora 717, a bee with skills and abilities not usual for her kin. I won’t delve into the plot, but I will say that I’ve found myself becoming extremely attached to Flora and haven’t been able stop reading about her exploits for the last two or three days. Honestly, I’m heartbroken that I’ve nearly finished this book!
Next on my list is Waking Gods by Sylvain Neuvel, the second book in the Themis Files trilogy. I couldn’t tear myself away from book one, Sleeping Giants, which follows a team working to track down and uncover the mysteries of a giant robot, pieces of which have been found scattered across the Earth. The chapters are presented as files containing journal entries, transcripts and interviews and sometimes you’ll find events have skipped forward a few weeks or months. This makes the book super fast-paced, racing through events as it imparts only the most important details. Each chapter contains a new revelation, so I’d often have to force myself to put Sleeping Giants down. I cannot wait to start book two.
Another series I’d like to continue is The Southern Reach Trilogy by Jeff Vandermeer, the first book of which, Annihilation, I absolutely loved. Disappointingly, I ended up giving up on book two because, along with a new narrator, the voice of the book noticeably (yet understandably) changed. Because I’d moved on so quickly from the first, I found this a touch jarring. I am however quite keen to persevere as I often catch myself wondering where this story goes. This is another sciencey mystery involving a team working to uncover the secrets of a mysterious place called Area X, an uninhabited and abandoned area of the US that nature has begun to reclaim. I love the biological aspect of this trilogy, like I do with The Bees, though this takes a considerably more chilling path.
Finally on my reading list, I’ve got The Girl With All The Gifts by M.R. Carey and Nod by Adrian Barnes, two books that I’m once again ashamed to say were at some point abandoned… see you when I’m finished reading!
Let me know the recent additions to your reading list!