Oh dear! The TBR is still going up – by 1 to 165! Part of the problem is that I seem to be reading lots of ridiculously long books at the moment. Question – does any crime novel really need to be over 600 pages?
So only a couple are likely to escape from the log-jam any time soon…
The Blurb says: In this fascinating and meticulously researched book, bestselling historian Arthur Herman sheds new light on two of the most universally recognizable icons of the twentieth century, and reveals how their forty-year rivalry sealed the fate of India and the British Empire. They were born worlds apart: Winston Churchill to Britain’s most glamorous aristocratic family, Mohandas Gandhi to a pious middle-class household in a provincial town in India. Yet Arthur Herman reveals how their lives and careers became intertwined as the twentieth century unfolded. Both men would go on to lead their nations through harrowing trials and two world wars–and become locked in a fierce contest of wills that would decide the fate of countries, continents, and ultimately an empire.
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The Blurb says: As we grow older – most of all, in what we remember and what we dream – we live in the past. Sometimes, we live more vividly in the past than in the present. As an older man, Juan Diego will take a trip to the Philippines, but his dreams and memories will travel with him; he is most alive in his childhood and early adolescence in Mexico. ‘An aura of fate had marked him,’ John Irving writes. ‘The chain of events, the links in our lives – what leads us where we’re going, the courses we follow to our ends, what we don’t see coming, and what we do – all this can be mysterious, or simply unseen, or even obvious.’
Avenue of Mysteries is the story of what happens to Juan Diego in the Philippines, where what happened to him in the past – in Mexico – collides with his future.
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NB All blurbs taken from Goodreads.
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So…what do you think? Do either of these tempt you?
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The Around the World in 80 Books Challenge – #AW80Books
For someone who says I don’t do challenges, I somehow seem to keep being tempted by them! This is another of the kind I like, relaxed, no strict rules, and most of all a completely open timescale.
Hosted by Sarah and Lucy at the wonderful Hard Book Habit, here’s what they say…
Here’s the deal. You’ll need to read 80 books set or connected with the random destinations of your choice, then you blog about each book that you read en route. You can choose any books you like – this challenge is not limited to fiction – and the only catch is that you must read at least one book connected to each continent, one sea-based book, and a book that involves travel – think the Orient Express, flight, hot-air balloons, train journeys, car trips, etc… the rest is up to you.
Since I already tend to range fairly widely around the world of fiction (I think), I reckon this should be a challenge that I can mostly meet from my normal reading. So I thought it might be fun to go back to the original book that inspired the challenge and see if I can find books for each stage of Phineas Fogg’s original journey. Wikipedia not only tells me where Fogg and his faithful servant Passepartout stopped, but they provide a map!
Personally I think their route looks fairly dull, so I hope to do plenty of detours along the way. Since the challenge started at the beginning of the year, I’m backdating, so I’ve marked off any places I’ve already been, and I’ll only be including books I recommend (unless I get stuck). Here’s the plan…
The Main Journey
- London – Martin Chuzzlewit
- Orient Express
- France – The Sisters of Versailles
- Mediterranean Sea
- Red Sea/Arabian Sea
- Elephant Travel
- Indian Ocean/ South China Sea
- Hong Kong
- San Francisco
- Sioux lands
- New York – I Am No One
- Atlantic Ocean
- Queenstown (Cobh) Ireland
- London – The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde
Some of these will be harder than others so a bit of creativity might be required. Suggestions very welcome, especially for the places I’ve highlighted in purple, so please get your thinking caps on! Any genre…
That leaves 53 spots for me to randomly tour the world, so here’s where I’ve been in the last couple of months.
- The Hebrides – Coffin Road
- Florida – Their Eyes Were Watching God
- Iceland – Snowblind
- Himalayas – Black Narcissus
8 down, 72 to go!
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