The Sunday Salon: The Rainy Day / Pre-Holiday Edition

I woke up to pouring rain this morning; it’s the kind of lazy day where I just want to stay indoors, curled up with a book, a cup of tea, and my dogs.  Actually, I can’t spend all day that way but at least I don’t have to go out much.

Reading-wise, it was a somewhat disappointing week.  Last Sunday I was facing an impossible deadline, but I was up for the challenge.  And I failed.  Completely.  Because, quite simply, I couldn’t get into Trollope’s Barchester Towers.  I gave up after 140 pages, but still published my thoughts for The Classics Circuit’s Anthony Trollope tour. Still, I’ve enjoyed visiting the tour stops; as usual the posts are varied, thorough, and fun to read.

Seeing how other readers are enjoying Trollope, I still don’t feel quite right about abandoning him.  I normally enjoy a challenging read.  Yesterday I read Buried in Print’s thoughts on Thomas Hardy’s Tess, and noted it had taken her several attempts to get through the book.  Hmmm.  I wonder if I’ll be similarly motivated to try Trollope later?   So don’t let my experience with Trollope put you off — check out the tour and perhaps you’ll be inspired to have a go!

After flinging Barchester Towers at the wall, I picked up Breaking Night, a memoir I’d set aside several weeks ago.  This was a difficult book, but in a different way, because it was such an emotional story (read my review).  I’m glad I read it, but also glad it didn’t take me long.  It was not a relaxing or fun book by any means!

And that’s why I chose a British crime novel for my current book:  Kate Atkinson’s Case Histories.  I actually read the sequel, One Good Turn, a few years ago (not realizing it was a sequel at the time).  Case Histories is the first in a series featuring detective Jackson Brodie.  The book’s first three chapters describe murder and missing persons cases that took place over thirty year period.  Then Jackson Brodie is brought in to investigate a situation related to the first incident, and I can just imagine how everything is going to interconnect in surprising ways.  I’m really looking forward to this as an escape read, and I think it will be just the thing to have with me when I curl up with my dogs and that cup of tea later today.

Also today I need to do a bit of armchair gift shopping (thank goodness for the internet!), and prepare for the week ahead.  This is my last week of work in 2010 … woo hoo!  But since most of my office follows a similar practice, we always end up trying to fit four weeks of work into two.  That means days full of meetings and deadlines.  But by Friday, it will all be over.  I’m sure I’ll get through it — I always do — and carving out time to read will be an important part of keeping things in balance.  I’m really looking forward to a couple of weeks off over the holidays, spent doing very little but enjoying time with my family.

What are you doing and reading this Sunday?


Read more from The Sunday Salon here.


5 thoughts on “The Sunday Salon: The Rainy Day / Pre-Holiday Edition

  1. It’s rainy and miserable in Florida too! Perfect day for snuggling with pooches and books. I need to add Kate Atkinson to my mountain.

  2. No reading time right now. Every spare moment spent knitting Crimble socks. Glad to read you are through until 2011 at the end of next week, that’s splendid!

  3. I’ve only tried Trollope once and didn’t get very far. I know I need to give him another chance, but I’m just not motivated to. But I do tend to give books or authors multiple chances, at different times in my life. There are some books that take me years to finally get through!

  4. Compared to the other books you read Case Histories will be a light read, but just seeing the title brings back the pit I felt in my stomach as I read the stories of murder and missing persons and the sadness surrounding them. I was a fairly new mother when I read Case Histories, and I found it gut wrenching to read as I considered how I would react if something like this faced me or my child. Don’t get me wrong, Kate Atkinson is a wonderful writer, I guess that it speaks highly of her that I was able to feel the characters’ pain like I did. Have you read Emotionally Weird? I think that was my introduction to her.

    I’m a long time reader of your blog, but haven’t commented before. Thank you so much for sharing your reading lists and reviews. You’ve introduced me to books and book-related resources I wasn’t aware were out there.

    • Holly, thank you so much for commenting! It’s always great to connect with a new visitor, and I appreciate your very nice thoughts about my blog.

      And boy, you are so right about the gut-wrenching aspects of Case Histories. The first three chapters outlining each case were so intense! And then as the story unfolds … well … yes it’s a “light” read but by no means frivolous.

      Thanks again for stopping by!

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