The Sunday Salon: My January Book Stack

How was the first week of 2013 for you?  I was lucky to be off work the entire week, plus the week before, so it’s been an enjoyable time spent with family.   I also finished my first book of 2013, and my first by Angela Thirkell: Pomfret Towers (read my review).  Earlier in the week, I published my 2013 Reading Resolutions which include, among other goals, an intention to read more from my stacks, and to read more short stories.  Not surprisingly, my January book stack has both of these goals in mind:

Uploaded from the Photobucket iPhone App

Here’s what I’m planning to read this month:

  • The Progress of Love, by Alice Munro:  this collection of short stories is now in a prominent place on my nightstand and I’ve read a bit each night before going to sleep.  So far this seems like a good way to get through my many unread volumes of short fiction.
  • Some Tame Gazelle, by Barbara Pym:  If 2012 was all about Elizabeth Taylor, 2013 will be all about Barbara Pym, as this time it’s her centenary year.  Once again, the LibraryThing Virago Modern Classics Group is celebrating the occasion by reading one book per month, in order of publication.  Some Tame Gazelle was Pym’s debut novel, so of course it’s our January read.  I started it yesterday and am enjoying it a lot already.
  • Never Mind, by Edward St. Aubyn:  the book shown is actually an omnibus of his four Patrick Melrose novels.  Never Mind is the first, and a fifth novel has since been published.  The fourth, Mother’s Milk, was nominated for the Booker Prize several years ago.  It sounded interesting, but as much as I wanted to check another prize nominee off my list, I couldn’t bring myself to do it without reading the first books in the series.
  • Ice Road, by Gillian Slovo: this is an Orange Prize nominee from back in 2004.  I picked this up from a friend who recently culled her shelves.  It’s Orange January, so why not read it now?

Speaking of Orange January, there are two other titles I’d like to read this month, which I’ll borrow from my local library.  Both are from the 2002 short list:

  • A Child’s Book of True Crime, by Chloe Hooper
  • No Bones, by Anna Burns

To be honest, I’m not sure I will get to both, especially given Ice Road‘s chunkiness, and having to return to the “real world” of my job  on Monday.  Wish me luck!

What books are you looking forward to reading this month?
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16 thoughts on “The Sunday Salon: My January Book Stack

  1. I enjoy Alice Munro; I like the idea of having a short story collection on the nightstand.

    This week, I’m reading (and loving) a mystery by Hallie Ephron called There Was an Old Woman. I can’t put it down!

    I am also going to be reading more from my stacks this year.


  2. Some Tame Gazelle is one of my favorite books ever!!!! If you ever write the Barbara Pym Society of North America is offering a Pym contest for her cententary (sp?) this year.

    • Kaggsy, I’m glad to hear that. I’m enjoying it very much. I just finished the chapter where the Archdeacon preaches his “amazing” sermon, endangering everyone’s Sunday lunch. Hilarious.

  3. All of these sound intriguing. I’ve got Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore going right now and it’s perfect for this dismal weather we’ve been experiencing.

  4. I love how you took a picture of your reading stack for this month. I’ve been thinking about doing the same thing. I’m looking forward to continuing Fairy Tales from the Brothers Grimm by Philip Pullman and The Twelve Tribes of Hattie by Ayana Mathis. Have a good week.

    • Vasilly, feel free to steal the “book stack photo” idea! I don’t know about you, but I love looking at pictures of other people’s books. The Twelve Tribes of Hattie has caught my interest as well — first heard of it on Books on the Nightstand, and today’s New York Times published a very favorable review. Now I’m dying to read it!

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