Read in 2018

 

 

  • Vain shadow by Jane Hervey (Persephone Books. Recommended.)
  • Thornhill by Pam Smy (Graphic novel. *spoiler* I can’t believe the ending — the neglected, unloved girl children commit suicide and find each other as friends. Now they can haunt the abandoned orphanage together! You’ve got to be kidding me. There’s a lot of real pain in these girls’ lives and the author is giving us a double suicide as a “happy” ending? And this appears to be marketed as a childrens’ book. Vulnerable children are just that — vulnerable. It’s unfashionable to talk about social responsibility in regard to fiction, but I think when you’re writing a book that neglected, abused children are going to identify strongly with you do have a responsibility not to present suicide as a happy-ending option.)
  • The Death of Truth by Michiko Kakutani (Highly recommended.)
  • Gould’s Book of Fish by Richard Flanagan (Pretentious and tiresome; gave up on page 49 — there are much better books out there more deserving of my time.)
  • We Go to the Gallery  by M. Elia and E. Elia (Hilarious. Avoided this series of books at first because I assumed they were going to be trendy-ironic. For this one at least, I was wrong)
  • The Tenant & The Motive by Javier Cercas (translated by Anne McLean)
  • The Art of Reading by Damon Young (not recommended)
  • The Impostor by Javier Cercas (translated by Frank Wynn)
  • Venice by Jiro Taniguchi
  • The Radetzky March by Joseph Roth (translated by Michael Hofmann) *Best work of fiction I have read in years. Highly recommended.*
  • The Darkening Age: The Christian Destruction of the Classical World by Catherine Nixey (Heartbreaking and highly recommended.)
  • To Fight Against This Age: On Fascism and Humanism by Rob Riemen
  • Solitude: I Pursuit of a Singular Life In a Crowded World by Michael Harris (Recommended — it gets better and better.)
  • The Comforters by Muriel Spark
  • White Houses by Amy Bloom (regurgitated research plus imagined naughty bits, very much not recommended)
  • Ten Arguments for Deleting You Social Media Accounts Right Now by Jaron Lanier (highly recommended)
  • The Power by Naomi Alderman (not recommended)
  • An Amorous Discourse in the Suburbs of Hell by Deborah Levy (Abandoned halfway through as it was dreadful.)
  • Territory of Light by Yuko Tsushima
  • The Long March by William Styron
  • The Balloon by Donald Barthelme (short story)
  • The Atheist in the Attic by Samuel R. Delany (PM Press edition includes the essay “Racism and Science Fiction”)
  • The Dream-Quest of Vellitt Boe by Kij Johnson
  • The Aeneid by Virgil (Robert Fagles translation)
  • Age of Anger by Pankaj Mishra
  • Quiet Girl in a Noisy World by Debbie Tung
  • When Doing the Right Thing is Impossible by Lisa Tessman (philosophy, Oxford University Press)
  • The Visit by Friedrich Dürrenmatt Play. Highly recommended.
  • Julius Caesar by Shakespeare
  • Hegel – Peter Singer