Charlotte's Web

Blogging my world since 2006

Summer Wish List


The books on my wish list are multiplying like rabbits with nothing better to do, so before they escape me, here they are noted down. Just so I don’t forget and in case anyone wants to give me a non-birthday related, summer-celebrating present. (I live in hope.)

Without further ado, I give you The Summer Wish List:

1. The Slap by Christos Tsiolkas. From the Amazon product description: ‘At a suburban barbecue, a man slaps a child who is not his own…The reverberations call into question the relationships between all those who witness it. At a suburban barbecue one afternoon, a man slaps an unruly 3-year-old boy. The boy is not his son. It is a single act of violence, but this one slap reverberates through the lives of everyone who witnesses it happen. In his controversial, award-winning novel, Christos Tsiolkas presents an apparently harmless domestic incident as seen from eight very different perspectives.’

2. The Tapestry of Love by Rosy Thornton. From Rosy’s website: ‘The Tapestry of Love is the story of how a woman falls in love with a place and its people: a portrait of landscape, a community and a fragile way of life.’ Rosy is my favourite romantic novelist and I’ve read all her books. I especially loved Hearts and Minds, set in a Cambridge college.

3. Hope Against Hope by Sally Zigmond. Sally’s an award-winning short story writer and this is her first novel. She’s running a short story writing tutorial on her blog at the moment, which is not to be missed. Writing tips! For free! From from someone who knows what she’s talking about! What’s not to like?

4. The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot. The story of the woman whose cells became the most important tools used in medicine. Because I’m falling in love with science.

5. The Primal Blueprint by Mark Sisson. My favourite caveman has written a book, subtitled ‘How to ReProgram Your Genes for Effortless Weight Loss, Vibrant Health and Boundless Energy.’ I lost four kilograms in a month just following his blog. Imagine what reading the book will do …

6. A Gate at the Stairs by Lorrie Moore. If Hilary and Barbara hadn’t been in the Orange Prize shortlist, this was apparently the book that would have won. Lorrie came up against the heavies. Called ‘lyrical, beguiling and wise.’

7. This Body of Death by Elizabeth George. The 16th in the Inspector Lynley series. I’ve read them all and I can’t stop now.

8. The Thousand Autumns of Jacob de Zoet by David Mitchell. Because Bloglily says it’s good and I was never brave enough to read Cloud Atlas.

9. Dead Like You by Peter James. The latest in the Roy Grace mysteries. Addicted!

10. Plenty by Yotam Ottolenghi. For what is summer without a new recipe book?

This list is by no means complete. I reserve the right to add more books at random, willy-nilly and so forth, and in response to wise readerly recommendations.

What’s on your wish list?


Author: charlotteotter

Novelist, feminist, crime writer

18 thoughts on “Summer Wish List

  1. Well for me its a winter wish list, but I have to comment, as I’ve just started number 1 on your list (I’ve read the first perspective). Very much looking forward to the rest. I’ll have to go and search out the rest of your wish list now. I read Half of a Yellow Sun on your recommendation, and loved it, so I should probably just read everything you read!

  2. I just came across A Gate At The Stairs the other day and wondered about it. I have a few Elizabeth George books but have only read Deception on His Mind. I read it at the beach one summer and was hooked. I really need to get to the others and don’t know why I haven’t. So much to read…so much to read.

  3. I hope you enjoy Skoot’s book! I went to graduate school with her (well, she was significantly farther ahead – leaving when I began) – but she is a very generous, open-hearted person and so happy her book is doing well!

  4. That’s a good list. I just have one on mine: Life and Fate. It might take me the whole summer.

  5. I am a die-hard fan of Lynley too, but I really have to wait until it comes out in paperback and not in hardback (too heavy to carry around and too expensive). You’ll let us know how good it is.

    I read about Henrietta Lacks’ biography in Oprah magazine, it really looks fascinating!

  6. That new Rosy Thornton is now on my wishlist; and I can barely keep up with it as is. I really enjoyed A Gate at the Stairs, but then I’m a Lorrie Moore fan anyway.

  7. You may be in luck: Rosy Thornton is sending me a copy of her book in exchange for my reviewing it on my blog (keep eagerly checking my mailbox). I could email her and ask if she’d do the same for you, if you’d like. Just let me know, either by email or FB.

  8. My list is mostly sci fi – I’ve been re-reading Dune.

  9. Try and borrow #7 and #9 if you can – I’m a completist so have read them (have already passed on my copies, alas), but I wasn’t terribly impressed. I just wanted to know what happened!

  10. I can recommend The Slap, Charlotte. I can’t even think about my mental wish list without breaking into a sweat – it’s right out of control, but I guess it’s got to include Barbara Kingsolver, if for no other reason than she’s mentioned just about everywhere I look (although mercifully not here, where I’ll just lean against that bench and catch my breath awhile…), and Patrick White, whose collected letters I am so enjoying. In fact, he’s referencing all sorts of fascinating folk, including NZ author Janet Frame, who died in 2004.

  11. I’ve just received a copy of The Slap yesterday as part of my “books to read while in Darfur”. Can’t wait. And I like the sound of the Skloot and also Rosy T’s book. I could do with some genetic reprogramming as well (to somebody less stressed for a start).

  12. That’s a loonng list. I should probably make one but I’ve made so little impression on my last ‘list of shame’, it would probably be a bit futile. My big question for the summer is to Kingsolver or not to Kingsolver.

  13. Let’s see: Dissolution by CJ Sansom, Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel, more mysteries, – Susan Hill, Jo Nesbo, Sue Grafton, I’m on a mystery reading binge this year 🙂 and Charles Dickens – Mystery of Edwin Drood so I can then read Drood by Dan Simmons. At the rate I’m going, this will be on my winter must-read list too! lol I’m two books behind on the Elizabeth George series, too. Oh, and Duma Key by Stephen King when I’m on my holidays because it’s too heavy to carry around.

  14. Oh do read Cloud Atlas. It is one of the best books I have ever read – one can only marvel at the mans imagination and skill. I have it in first edition hardback and the cover is so so beautiful as well. It would definitely be one of the things that I would rescue if there was a fire.

  15. Pingback: Books » Gappy Tales

  16. Hate, hate, hated The Slap.

  17. Interesting to see that The Slap gets just such different reactions. Am still very curious to read it (despite the violence, or maybe because of it). And the Skloot went down very well as a present.

  18. Thing about The Slap is the unbelievably casual racism. Di can weigh in here to let us know if it’s typical for Australia, but as a South African with such a recent collective memory of racism gone beserk, it’s pretty offensive. The other thing about it is that Tsiolkas has a hands-off style. He doesn’t involve the reader emotionally. This is perhaps because he has nine different narrators, but also because he tends to a distant, almost journalistic style.

    I liked it, though. I thought it was interesting.

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