Charlotte's Web

Blogging my world since 2006


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Wish Lists

Having been given carte blanche from you lovely lot to keep on keeping on – and that fact that both Marks & Spencers and Aldi have already got their Christmas aisles groaning with mince pies and Lebkuchen respectively – I am happy to share with you my Christmas wish lists. Here are the movies and the books that I have missed this year and which I am desperate to see or read. Please feel free to add suggestions in the comments – I welcome your thoughtful tips for both. Please note that on the movie front, I am an “easy listening” watcher. I don’t do violence, torture, sex marathons, zombies or slashers. However, I can cope with very edgy humour – welcome it, in fact.

Without further ado, here is my movie wish list:

1. The Kids are Alright

2. Bridesmaids

3. Beginners

4. We Need to Talk About Kevin

And now for the books:

1. Before I Go to Sleep by SJ Watson.

2. Imaginary Girls by Nova Ren Suma. Nova is long-term blog friend, who is rapidly becoming a YA superstar. Imaginary Girls is her second novel published under her own name.

3. Deep Country by Neil Ansell. Neil’s a Litopia connection, but I read the Guardian review before he joined the writing site and earmarked the book then and there.

4.  A Kind of Intimacy by Jenn Ashworth

5.  Darkside by Belinda Bauer. I loved her debut Blacklands and can’t wait for this.

6. Pigeon English by Stephen Kelman. This is the Booker Prize shortlister that appeals most to me.

7. Reading Women by Stephanie Staal. A history of feminist writing.

8. The Paris Wife by Paula McLain

9. A Gate at the Stairs by Lorrie Moore

I have just reactivated my Goodreads account, so if you are there, do let me know. I’ve just lost half an hour wondering around reading everyone’s recommendations, so will reserve the right to update my wish list according to what I find there and what you recommend.

What’s on your watching and reading wish lists?


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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?