The Sunday Salon: What I’ll be Reading in May

Where did April go?  It’s been a fairly slow month for me, book-wise.  I read 4 of the 5 books in my April book stack, and I’m not even finished with the fourth one.  Granted, it’s the fourth movement of A Dance to the Music of Time, and the longest volume yet at about 800 pages.  Realistically, I probably never had a prayer of finishing all 5 books, but looking at the page count I “should” have finished 4.  But it’s not a contest, is it?  I guess I should just relax and get on with May.  Here’s what I have in store:

From top to bottom:

  • A Dance to the Music of Time (Fourth Movement), by Anthony Powell:  The bookmark is sitting right between the second and third novella.  About 270 pages to go.  This volume is a bit slower than the earlier ones, and that’s saying something because not much really “happens” in any of them.
  • Poor Caroline, by Winifred Holtby: This is another carryover from April, that fifth book I didn’t get to.  It’s a new Virago edition, which is just being released in the US by Trafalgar Square Publishing.
  • A Game of Hide and Seek, by Elizabeth Taylor:  This is the Elizabeth Taylor Centenary May readalong.  I always enjoy Taylor’s books, and some critics thought it her best novel.  I’m eager to see for myself!
  • Dark Fire, by C.J. Sansom: The second in a series of Tudor-era mysteries that I just discovered this year.  Quite a chunkster, as you can see, but I’ve heard it’s a relatively quick read.
  • None to Accompany Me, by Nadine Gordimer:  The oldest book on my TBR shelf!  I added it to my LibraryThing catalog four years ago.  I assumed I picked it up after reading her Booker Prize-winning novel, The Conservationist, but that’s not the case so I’m not sure what prompted me to buy it.  Fortunately I haven’t lost interest in reading it!
  • Finally on my Kindle, there’s George Eliot’s MiddlemarchThe Team Middlemarch discussion of Book III Waiting for Death, is scheduled for May 19.  I need to read about 50 pages by then.

Applying some of April’s realism, that’s probably enough to keep me busy for the month.  But just in case, I have a couple more possibilities available at my local library:

  • The Observations, by Jane Harris: I just bought her latest, Gillespie and I, and want to read this one first.
  • Carry Me Down, by M. J. Hyland: This Booker Prize nominee caught my attention when I was perusing the backlist.

If I don’t get to these in May, you’ll see them on my June stack!

What are your May reading plans?


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14 thoughts on “The Sunday Salon: What I’ll be Reading in May

  1. I haven’t finally decided on all my May reading yet. I will be reading A game of Hiode and seek too Laura – I have a modern edition – but have naughtily ordered a nice green Virago edition from Abebooks. I (along with other readers in the group) will be reading the next Thomas Hardy book in my Hardy challenge – The Return of the native. There are 2 or 3 books from last months pile I haven’t read either – because I got distracted by other books – can’t decide whether to add them to May’s pile or not. I want to read a Persephone – can’t decide which one of the 4 tbr – and I have pre-ordered the sequel to Wolf Hall – which is out here in the UK in hardback on 10th May – so I may read that when it comes – it’s a big book so will probably take me a whole week to read – I usually read 2 – 3 books in a week. Oh what to read next? – is always such a dilemma!

  2. I think you are aiming for the stars with all these great books. Cut yourself a little slack if you don’t quite make it. I wish I’d aim a bit higher with my reading.

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  3. I’m planning to read the first CJ Sansom book, Dissolution.
    Carry Me Down is one I keep wanting to read and it yells at me every time I look at my library list, but probably not in May. I’m 150 pages from finishing Gillespie and I, and I plan to read The Song of Achilles in May before the Orange prize is announced.
    I’ve got another Carol Shields to read this month, Swann, that I am really looking forward to.

    • I predict you’ll enjoy C.J. Sansom! I’ve heard the later books are better than the first one. I’ll see for myself soon!

  4. Heheh, like your comment about nothing ever really happening in those stories anyway! I admire the way you stick to your books even if it means pushing them into the next reading month; by then my reading mood may have changed completely and it could be years before I get back to a book that I miss on the first attempt! My May? I’m planning to tidy up my Current Reading stack, which has blossomed in a satisfyingly uncontrollable way.

    • BIP, I appreciate your admiration but in this case I’m not worthy. Poor Caroline is a review copy from the US distributor, and I agreed to publish a review in May. Cleaning up your “current reading” stack sounds like a noble pursuit — I wish you luck!

  5. I love Middlemarch! My goal for May is to focus on some of the reading challenges I committed to doing this year. I’m way behind on most of them.

  6. I read Gillespie and I this month and wasn’t even aware of the other one. Guess what I’ll be adding to my to-read pile! (I loved it, by the way).

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