With Summer 2021 now officially arrived, what better way is there to relax than sitting under the shade of a tree or on the beach with a good read? But often the question is what to read? Jeannie Tognola has given us a list of recent books she greatly enjoyed and her Top Ten Ever books.
Children of Jocasta by Natalie Haynes. It's a retelling of the story of
Oedipus. Gripping and clever. Natalie Haynes makes the Greek and Roman classics
Woolf at Home by Hilary Macaskill. Macaskill explores the homes that
meant the most to V.W and to her husband Leonard. Wonderfully informative
and very readable, giving a glimpse into their lives.
by S.J. Parris. I've recently discovered this writer. It's the first in a
thrilling series featuring Giordano Bruno set in the time of Queen
Elizabeth 1 and he is recruited to expose a treacherous conspiracy in
Oxford. It's a riveting read.
Humans by Matt Haig. An alien takes on a human form, that of a professor
of mathematics. The alien learns to be human and makes us think what it is
to be human. It's a quirky and thought provoking book.
Wind Singer by William Nicholson. I read this thinking my grand daughter
would like it. It's the first of a trilogy and like Philip Pullman, J.K.
Rowling, C.S Lewis and Tolkien, it transports you into a different fantasy
world. It has beautiful imagery and wonderful characters. It's set in
Aramanth where it is decided how people should live but it's not quite
utopia; it's efficient and soulless. The heroine is Kestrel who rebels
which sets everything in motion. It's a terrific adventure.
Ten Favourite books ever (an almost impossible
task, but here it is)
1. Starting from childhood, it would have to be
The Boy Next Door by Enid Blyton. I must have read it dozens of times over and
I loved it. A proper children's adventure story.
2. Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte. I liked her
sense of independence.
3. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee.
Fantastic coming of age story and I identified very strongly with Scout.
4. Cold Comfort Farm by Stella Gibbons. It's a
feel good story and very witty.
5. Middlemarch by George Eliot. It's such
a truthful story about human behaviour
6. His Dark Materials by Philip Pulman. He
was my tutor at college and was writing this when I was a student. He's a
7. Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel. I could
choose so many of Mantel's books but this is outstanding historical
8. To The Lighthouse by Virginia Woolf. I'm a
huge VW fan and it's difficult to choose but I think this is one of her best
which explores personal relationships and reflects on her own childhood
9. The Terracotta Dog by Andrea Camilleri.
I love diving into the world of Camilleri and Inspector Montalbano.
10. The Color Purple by Alice Walker. Set
in the deep American South. A story full of courage and hope. An amazing book
about black feminism.