Friday, 7 January 2011

Book Blogger Hop and Coming Soon, 7/1/11

The Book Blogger Hop:

Book Blogger Hop

hosted by Jennifer at Crazy for Books.

It's been a few weeks since I've taken part in the Book Blogger Hop, thanks to working overtime and then Jennifer quite rightly taking a two week holiday over Christmas and New Year.

This week's question:
"What book influenced or changed your life? How did it influence/change you?"
Wow, it's so difficult to narrow it down to just one. I think, at the risk of repeating myself, I will say Anne of Green Gables, because Anne Shirley was probably the most real heroine I had encountered in fiction at that point in my life. Imaginative, scatty and impulsive, she was a real "kindred spirit." I think that reading about her from a young age, learning from her mistakes and watching her mature, helped to shape my personality to make me the person I am now. At different points in my life I kept returning to the Anne books and every time a different part of her story spoke to me in my own situations: an outsider, a dreamer and later on as a student caught between calling two places "home."
Coming Soon
(Because I don't have a mailbox.)
I'm afraid I've gone rather overboard on my book-buying since Christmas.
It started off quite reasonably. Jasper Fforde's Shades of Grey was the Times book of the week, so I got it for £2.99 with a paper. Then, on the New Year bank holiday, Waterstone's were open later than we were at W.H. Smith, and the two books I'd been looking at which weren't on special offer (then) with us, were on a 3 for 2 offer there. So I had to buy a third.
A Gate at the Stairs - Lorrie Moore
Never Let Me Go - Kazuo Ishiguro
South Riding - Winifred Holtby

And then... I felt I ought to sign up for the Support Your Local Library challenge, because the council recently announced that all but the two biggest libraries on the Island will be closing soon - a real tragedy. So I checked out three books, two of which I still have waiting to be read.
The Outlander - Gil Adamson
My Best Friend's Girl - Dorothy Koomson

And then! The Richard and Judy Book Club made a comeback, exclusive to W.H. Smith. I decided I would be failing in my duties as a bookseller if I didn't read at least some of the books that we're promoting, so I can recommend titles from personal experience. Besides, not only were the eight shortlisted titles and some other "If you enjoyed X, then you'll love Y" books on a Buy One Get One Free offer, (I bought four!) but Smith's employees were given a voucher for a free copy of the first review title: The Postmistress by Sarah Blake.

The Postmistress - Sarah Blake
This Perfect World - Suzanne Bugler
Hothouse Flower - Lucinda Riley
Major Pettigrew's Last Stand - Helen Simonson
Mr Rosenblum's List - Natasha Solomons

Look out for reviews of some of these titles over the next few weeks. Also to come, I have still some unread books left over from last year (and the years before that! Ahem.) and the first of my Back To The Classics selection will be reviewed soon. On that note, I ought to stop blogging and start reading before my to-read pile gets any bigger and topples over.


  1. Wow! That's a lot of books!

    It's interesting to see all the different books that inspired everyone in different things!

    Here's my Hop

  2. WOW, that is indeed a lot of books. You will definitely be occupied for a while to come.
    Thanks for stopping by my blog, thought i would return the favour, and glad i did. :D

  3. I was definitely most influenced by Anne of Green Gables as well, for similar reasons (my answer's here: I'm re-reading it right now and loving it!

  4. I love Anne of Green Gables...the movies! I haven't read the books. I'm not sure I could get through them. I'm not a historical fiction person.

    Thx for hopping by!


  5. This will probably come of something as a surprise but the book that changed/influenced my life (more than any other) is a non-fiction book. I know we all focus on novels and the fanciful fiction we love to read but The Four Work Week is the book that gets all the credit. I know the title sounds fictional but it really isn’t. Hop over to my blog and find out why –

    Happy Book Blogger Hop Day!

    Howard A. Sherman

  6. Hopping through. I love Anne of Green Gables too! And I especially love the movies - one of the few cases where the movies and books come close in fabulousness.
    Happy weekend!
    My Hop

  7. Love the picture of you holding books in front of a full bookcase :)

    You got some great titles there, and of course you should buy more so you can recommend :)
    I will be looking in particular for your review of Major Pettigrew's Last Stand -- that's been on my shelf for a while, but haven't gotten around to it for some reason.


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