Try A Chapter – May 2018 or books I have been excited about for too long.

I am not really doing all that well on my resolution to read the books that I owned before the start of the year. So I figured, I would pick a few books off my shelves and read the first chapter to see which one I want to read. I have seen this tag around and always wanted to try it.

I chose mostly fiction because I am currently reading a whole lot of genre fiction and need to diversify again. I also picked books that I am in theory super excited about, mostly by authors whose work I have enjoyed before. I am for some reason not that good to actually pick up a favourite author’s other works.

Book 1: number9dream by David Mitchell (on my shelf for 1 1/2 years)

975186Why I own it: Because I love David Mitchell and want to read all his books; this is one of two of his novels I haven’t read.

Thoughts after one chapter: That was a long chapter that should have been annoying: mixing dream sequences with Michtell’s trademark unpleasant young men does not sound appealing. But somehow it is and by the end of these 40 pages I a) want to know more and b) feel really sorry for Eiji.

Book 2: The Clocks In This House All Tell Different Times by Xan Brooks (on my shelf for 6 months)

32869842Why I own it: It was nominated for the Costa First Novel Award and I love that title.

Thoughts after one chapter: I don’t know. I found it clumsy in its foreshadowing and maybe a bit too vague (and I do enjoy vagueness in my fiction). This does not quite grab me yet.

 

Book 3: An Untamed State by Roxane Gay (on my shelf for 1 1/2 years)

26029800Why I own it: It’s Roxane Gay.

Thoughts after one chapter: That book starts with a bang. I am not sure I can deal with this much darkness at the moment but on the other hand I love the way Roxane Gay’s language flows.

 

 

Book 4: Arcadia by Lauren Groff (on my shelf for over 1 1/2 years)

30621334Why I own it: I loved Fates and Furies when I read it a few years ago and bought this one and then never got around to reading it. Story of my life. I did recently read her new short story collection Florida and enjoyed that as well, so now I really want to read everything Lauren Groff has written.

Thoughts after one chapter: Very interesting. I love Lauren Groff’s straightforward prose and I do want to see where this goes. (This does not have chapters, so I read 15 pages.)

Book 5: The Book Of Joan by Lidia Yuknavitch (on my shelf for 6 months)

30653706Why I own it: I am a huge fan of Lidia Yukanvitch’s writing (her memoir was by far my favourite book of last year) and want to read everything she has ever written. And then I don’t read her books.

Thoughts after one chapter: I love this. Lidia Yuknavitch is a hero. This first chapter gives a dizzying insight into the book to come and I am so here for this weird dystopian tale.

 

So, yes, this was a success. I am excited for all these books (except maybe the Xan Brooks which is just straight up weird and somehow not hooking me at all). I will be reading the David Mitchell first and then Lidia Yuknavitch’s book (second only because I am currently already reading a few sci-fi-ish books).

Have your read any of these books? What were your thoughts? Which one would you have chosen?

6 thoughts on “Try A Chapter – May 2018 or books I have been excited about for too long.

  1. I haven’t read this particular Mitchell, but thought Ghostwritten was marvelous (also partly set in Japan), and The Book of Joan is one of the best books I’ve read so far this year; I can’t understand why it wasn’t at least on the Women’s Prize longlist.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I love Ghostwritten – it might be my favourite of Mitchell’s novels. I adore his way of building characters that are obnoxious but feel real.
      Lidia Yuknavitch is in general not getting the praise I think she always deserves. I loved the little snippet of The Book of Joan that I read. I am glad to hear you enjoyed it too!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Oh gosh yes, Yuknavitch is wonderful. The Book of Joan is very haunting and visceral; if you’ve read Angela Carter, you might see some similarities.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. I haven’t actually read any Angela Carter; I own two of her books and really want to get to her. I am so bad at reading the authors I am most intrigued by.

        Like

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