Tuesday, 21 August 2007

Outmoded Authors Challege

I've joined a reading challenge - my first - and I’m very excited about it. I’m envious of people who have found authors in their local libraries – ours is officially useless, though they’ve managed to come up with a Fr Brown collection. So I shall read some books off my shelves and I’ve spent next month’s book allowance on additions. There’s a rather English bias, as a result, but I’ll try to find some others.

Christina Stead, The Man Who Loved Children: this was on my shelves, I started it before and got stuck. I’ll finish it this time.

Freya Stark: my mother should be useful here, she’s a great admirer. I shall raid her collection.

G.K. Chesterton, The Man Who Was Thursday, The Man Who Knew Too Much, The Napoleon of Notting Hill and Father Brown stories. I read and liked TMWWT and Fr Brown before, in my distant youth and I look forward to re-acquainting myself with them.

G.B. Shaw: knew these well in my drama student days, might have another go at Saint Joan.

Ivy Compton-Burnett: another old favourite, I’ll find as many as I can and do some re-reading. A Heritage and Its History is on my shelves and will make a good place to start.

Malcolm Lowry: Dark as the Grave Wherein My Friend is Laid. One of my “must get round to” authors and I found this one cheap, so will start with it.

Marian Engel, The Bear and Lunatic Villas. Both off my shelves (if I can find them!) I was just a smidge shocked by The Bear first time round. Also The Glassy Sea and The Honeyman Festival, which are completely new to me, and I’ve had to order from Canada.

W. Somerset Maugham, Of Human Bondage. I read this more than once when I was young, so it will be very interesting to go back see how it fares. I’d like to re-read Cakes and Ale, too, which I remember liking very much.

Anything else depends on what I can get hold of: I’d like to finally read all of The Forsyte Saga. If I have time I might try to a bit of Scott, but it won’t be Ivanhoe, which we had to read at school (I managed up to Chapter 3, which meant that the subsequent exam was a bit of a disaster!)

I foresee lots of late nights and a serious dent in the whisky supply - must remember I have to more than just read everything!

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