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Reading report,19 December 2016

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? is hosted by Kathryn at the Book Date and is "a place to meet up and share what you have been, are and about to be reading over the week."

Visit the Book Date to see what various other book bloggers have been up to in the past week.

I was in Germany last Monday and didn't have time to finish a reading report before I left, so here's a double doze:

The week before last I finished listening to Five Little Pigs by Agatha Christie, audiobook read by Hugh Fraser. I'm quite sure I have not read this one before, and I think it's just become one of my favourite Poirots. Fortunately there were no foreign accents in this one, other than Poirot's (refer to my previous comments on the subject in my last reading report if you don't know what I'm talking about).

This week I read quite a lot, but only finished two books.

The first was Never the Bride by Paul Magrs. This is the first book in an alternative reality urban fantasy series and while I found several things that could have been done better, I mostly enjoyed it but still have no intention to let all the various cliffhangers drag me into reading more of this series. I'm writing a review, so will not say any more here.

The second book I finished was one I started reading earlier in the year but set aside for various reasons. I found it languishing under a pile of laundry recently and decided to make an effort to finish it, and I'm glad I did because unless I read some really spectacular books before the end of the year, it will decidedly be in the top 10 of the books I have read this year. This was Casanova by Ian Kelly, a biography of the famous 18th century Venetian adventurer whose amorous exploits led his family name to become a synonym for "womaniser". This book presents Casanova as much more than that: an epicure, sensualist, mathematician, man of letters and clever observer of human nature, but also an opportunist, fraudster and gambler. A complex man, in fact. I happen to have two more Casanova books in my TBR pile: A 1929 edited English translation of his autobiography, Histoire de ma vie, and the novel Casanova in Bolsano by Hungarian author Sándor Márai. After what Kelly says about the various editions of the Histoire, I hesitate to read that one, as it's based on a heavily bowdlerised German version. It looks like the edition to read, should one want to read the story in Casanova's own words (or as near as possible, it having been written in French, which I do not feel up to reading) is the 1967 Williard R. Trask complete English translation, but it's so very looooong.

I am currently reading: Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children, or rather, I am listening to it. A friend lent me an iPod loaded with the audiobook and more or less ordered me to listen to it. So far I am enjoying it, but I think I need to get a printed copy, because the descriptions of the photographs just aren't the same as seeing them.

I have now managed to strike 6 books off the list of partially read books I compiled in October: three I decided to start reading over again, two that I finished reading, and one I decided to cull. Unfortunately I have added several books to the list since then, so I'll probably finish the year with between 50 and 60 partially read books strewn around the place. I think it might be time for a reading challenge...

I have also nearly reached my aim of culling 100 books from my collection. I was running out of shelf space and while rearrainging my bookshelves I realised I have a number of books on my keeper shelves that I had no interest in reading again, so I am going through the whole collection and culling books.

I have finished a project from this marvellous book that is going in a lucky recipient's Christmas package:

I can't show it yet, nor can I reveal who it's for, as the recipient might visit the blog.

I am already planning another project, a combination of two recipes in fact: the hare and the deer. Can you guess what I'm planning to make?

In other news:
I received an eagerly awaited package on December 5: two pairs of spectacles I ordered from abroad at the beginning of November. I made the mistake of putting the progressive vision pair on immediately. Then I sat typing a blog post and wondering why my eyes were watering, having forgotten my rule to always wait until I wake up the next morning to put on new spectacles, especially when the prescription is different from the previous one. I had the usual eye fatigue after the first day of wearing them, but I'm fine now and my vision is clearer than it has been in months (I was waiting for my eyes to recover from diabetes-related eyesight problems and had to use my old specs in the meantime). The other was a pair of single vision spectacles with lenses that darken in the sun and I plan to use as sunglasses.


Kathryn T said…
Mm I have heard of people ordering spectacles overseas, but I haven't tried it. I have my prgressives and darkening outside all in one glass so I can go in and out without thinking! Sounds like you should start a challenge for half finished books!
Kathy Martin said…
Partially finished books would drive me crazy. I have to either finish a book once I start it or abandon it and add it to the "Donate" pile. I also need to cull my book collection again. I might wait until I am packing the boxes to move before I start that though. Come see my week here. Happy reading!
Greg said…
I've been undecided on Miss Peregrine's as I wasn't sure if I wanted to read it or not- then the movie came out and it looked different from how I imagined the book to be- I'm so confused lol- hope it's good though! And have a nice week. :)
Nise' said…
It is always hard for me to go through my books to reduce my collection. Love the animal heads. I just got new glasses with progressive lenses and made the mistake of not getting used to them slowly and went for a walk wearing them. Was dizzy the whole day!

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