Current Reading List #1

Sunday, 26 August 2018

From non-fiction, poetry, thriller, YA dystopia and short stories. It's a real mix.

Reading is one of those things that fell off my radar after school. I often only found myself reading for school work as part of my GCSE's and A-Levels, or every now and then, I'd actually pull up my socks and devour something that caught my attention during my holidays away from work. But for the most part, to find me reading was a rare occurrence.

Then I went to uni. Then I rediscovered reading for pleasure, how to find books I'd enjoy and actually making time to read. One of the biggest things I used to claim was that I didn't have time, yet I always had a moment to scroll through instagram or watch youtube – same rules apply, you make time. Studying creative writing has opened my mind again to the pleasures of reading and even expanded the landscape to poetry, short stories and non-fiction.

An Attempt At Exhausting A Place In Paris by George Perec.  Admittedly, this is on my recommended reading list, but the title and concept leapt at me. Paris is one of my favourite places I've travelled to and I'm a teeny-weeny bit obsessed with the culture, so to read the observations of a Parisian, filling the gaps in between the details of daily Paris life? I'm sold. I could easily swallow this in one sitting, but so far I've just popped in and out to find how the tiniest of observations about a stranger walking past a coffee shop window can tell an entire story. Pretty nifty, eh?

she must be mad by Charly Cox.  I know, you've seen this everywhere. Charly is making poetry cool, becoming the voice of the social media generation, and her management Gleam have got their marketing strategy on point. The cynic in me really didn't want to like this but I downloaded the iBooks sample and found I was gripped by Charly's stories; it's like reading scribbles from my own diary. To me, poetry puts emotions and experiences into words, you can pop in and out of them in a whim, and there's something comforting about moulding someone else's words to mean something unique to us. Also, the cover is so pretty it'll look great on your coffee table anyway lolz.

The Cutting Season by Attica Locke.  Hands up, another one from my recommended reading list, but if you know me then you know I love a thriller. The last thriller I read, The Prestige by Christopher Priest (4 reasons to read that here) had me hooked and reeling about it for days after. If it includes a dead body and mystery to be solved, count me in – I'm excited to start this one.

The Hunger Games: Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins.  Since getting back into reading, a few books at the top of my list were of films I loved, to see how their brilliant ideas were first introduced to the world. I devoured the first two books in the series in early June and immediately felt like I'd learnt much more about the world of Panem. Plus the movies became much more poignant and hard hitting than I remembered after rewatching them as I finished each book, so I do think they're worth reading. As an aspiring author, it's also comforting to read some snippets of clumsy writing here and there, and knowing that if your ideas are good, the writing doesn't always have to be perfect.

Protest: Stories of Resistance edited by Ra Page.  Short stories is a recent discovery for me since uni. I'm not entirely sure why they're not more prominently discussed, since the great thing is you can read them in one sitting, so they often really pack a punch. Being able to read bursts of reimagined history isn't something I would usually look for, but if I can learn about both history and concise writing at the same time, I'm in.

What's on your reading list?

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