Book thread 2018 📚


read ‘a card from angela carter’ by susannah clap this morning

thought this was going to literally be postcards/scrapbook writing stuff from carter but the postcards are a jumping off point for anecdotes/sort of a character study by clap, who was her friend & editor. it’s only a short, little book but it’s so obviously filled with love for her mate, it’s just fucking lovely.

carter seems like a really cool and funny person, didn’t know she had anarchist leanings or that she had the largest collection of sardine tins in southern england.

got the big biography that came out the other year as well as this which i’m now doubly excited for.



First foray into Isherwood with A Single Man (been meaning to read him for ages), and it’s just getting everything right. Haven’t been surprised and astonished by an opening like that for a while, the language is beautifully lean, and the observations not at all laboured considering how often they appear - I’m feeling the motherfuckin’ craft!


Have you read any Kelly Link? Fits the spooky remit. I’m reading ‘get in trouble’ by her at the moment


Just looking on amazon as I need a kindle reboot (been reading non-fiction recently).

I think this might be up our streets, so to speak.


Sorry for the terrible link!


Read so much pure trash lately, not that is was all bad, most of it was enjoyable but no literary greats in the mix.

Before the Fall by Noah Hawley. He’s a writer on Fargo and whilst I liked it, it dragged a bit and I was expecting some crazy twist and there wasn’t one really.

Blacklands by Belinda Bauer. Appeals to my serial killer interests, thought this was pretty good actually.

Lullaby by Leila Slimani. Don’t get the hype for this one at all. I thought some of it was cinematic but wasn’t hugely impressed.

Abbatoir Blue by Peter Robinson. Ticks all the trashy crime boxes. It was alright.

Close to Home by Cara Hunter. Loads of great reviews but I literally don’t remember even reading it so it’s a meh from me.

Let Me Lie by Clare Mackintosh. Wasn’t sure about this then I thought it was ok, but I’ve not really given it much thought since reading it.

Thirteen by Steve Cavanagh. Perfect easy thriller. Completely far fetched but in a great way. Really liked this, as silly as it was.

In the Dark by Cara Hunter. Decent enough, didn’t really find the ending very satisfying but an easy page turner.

Skin Deep by Liz Nugent. Thought it wasn’t really up my street for at least half of the book but in the end I really liked it and I enjoyed the mini chapters going back to island legends mixed in with the character’s life story.

Last Time I lied by Riley Sagar. Hmmm this was a bit too much like young adult reading for me.

In a Dark, Dark Wood by Ruth Ware. Another one where I didn’t get the hype. Enjoyed lots of it mind you but didn’t find it as gripping as I thought.

Dark Pines by Will Dean. Appealed to the scandi noir lover in me, and it turns out it’s sets in a part of Sweden I’ve been to, albeit briefly so that helped with getting into it. Not sure I like the reveal but I largely enjoyed the build up.

The Stranger Beside Me by Ann Rule. Obviously totally horrific (it’s about Ted Bundy) but fascinating all the same.

The Woman in the Window by A J Finn. I read it quickly and enjoyed elements of it but I expected a bit more from it really. Found it really easy to visualise the scenes though which is rare for me so it was quite evocative.

The Other Twin by L V Hay. Weird mostly, felt like YA reading and I’m not sure about the twist. Like, it was interesting and all but not sure it was delivered or set up well enough.

I’ll Be Gone in the Dark by Michelle McNamara. Brilliant. I read this one back in March actually so the perfect timing (just before the killer was caught in April). Not sure how much I’d like it now the mystery is solved. Really beautiful but simple writing.

Exquisite by Sarah Stovell. Got into this one pretty easily, enjoyed it throughout. Bit like a Single White Female vibe.

All the Baztan Trilogy books by Dolores Redondo. Really got into these mostly for their setting in the Basque country and I liked the mythical element. Atmospheric and easy to whizz through.

You Could Do Something Amazing with Your Life (You are Raoul Moat) by Andrew Hankinson. Mostly got this one for the cover. It was ok, expected something more creative from it though.

Got about 5 half finished books to revisit but my MA reading is getting in the way (which is why I’m reading such trash for pleasure)


I am 520/842 pages into 4 3 2 1. Anyone who’s read it - is it worth sticking with? It seems to have sloooweeddd rriigghhtt ddoowwnn, and the different lives are quite miniscule in their differences that it’s getting a bit tedious. It suffers from that same American Pastoral thing of meticulous details which don’t really add anything to the story IMO

  • Stick with it
  • Move on with your life
  • I have no opinion

0 voters


I am reading the Argonauts by Maggie Nelson. I want to chuck it out the window and myself with it.


Just to add to the general discontent: I am reading ‘The Glass Bead Game’ by Herman Hesse and I really can’t be doing with it. I haven’t found anything to care about in the character or the world that’s created. Was expecting some byzantine ‘Name of the Rose’ shennanigans but it’s just… nothingy.

Real pity because the last time I read a book based on the fact that a James Blackshaw LP is named after it, I ended up a James Tiptree Jr fan for life.


I have just read this and did not like it at all, sorry keith (thank you for the recommendation regardless!)


It may be because I read it after The Lesser Bohemians and it was such a joy to read the least male/macho book of all time and this one just reminded me of so many bang average books by Men that I hate.


Counterpoint - I read it based on @keith’s recommendation and loved it!


I worry that this means we’re both awful people…


just realised I started this thread and didn’t post in it:

some stuff I’ve read recently that I love:

  • left hand of darkness by Ursula le Guin
  • the dispossessed by Ursela le Guin
  • the water cure by Sophie mackintosh
  • Sight by Jessie Greengrass
  • Free Love by Ali Smith
  • autumn by Ali Smith
  • bunch of non-fiction sociology nerd books

currently reading: Oreo by Fran Ross

do men even write books lol


Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone by J.K. Rowling


the first bad man by miranda july. really liked it


I’m about fifty pages away from finishing Oreo.


Loved this so much.


Rereading Amerika by ya boi Franz Kafka, atm

Man, Kafka’s protagonists can’t catch a break


I think I liked this book but can’t remember what happened or anything distinguishing about it