July In Reading


This month’s books are mostly from the same publisher: Granta Books

Here is what has been read this month:


The Tidal Zone by Sarah Moss (Review Copy)

I have heard a lot about this book through some of the YouTube book vloggers I follow. The Tidal Zone is the story of Adam – A stay at home Dad who receives a call from his fifteen year old daughter’s school to inform him that for no apparent reason Miriam has collapsed and stopped breathing. In that moment his life is plunged into darkness and the story of his life and his family are rewritten and re-told around this event from Adam’s perspective.

The book explores parental love, overwhelming fear, illness and recovery. The book has a lot of dark humour and engages gender roles, politics, academia and the NHS it’s well written and has a good literary style that I am starting to enjoy more.


The Fireman by Joe Hill  (Audiobook via Audible)

This has been my first audiobook experience in a very long time. The books by Hill that I have read I enjoyed so decided to use Audible after hearing positive things from the Book Riot podcast. The first thing I noticed that it’s over 24 hours long – when did audiobooks become so long ?? but it comes in handy when are preparing blog posts 🙂 also it’s narrated by Kate Mulgrew and works so well.

A terrifying plague sweeps through America. No-one knows it’s origin point but it’s striking cities one by one, medical professionals are calling it Draco Incendia Trychophyton but to everyone else it’s Dragonscale – a highly contagious, deadly spore that marks it victims with black & gold marks across their bodies before well before they just burt into flames.

Humour mixed with terror and some great book references.


The Nakano Thrift Shop by Hiromi Kawakami (Review Copy)

I have been eagerly awaiting this as Kawakami’s debut Strange Weather in Tokyo was my favourite book of 2015.

Hitomi takes a cash register job in a quirky thrift shop which she is strangely attached to as are the local villagers who are fascinated by the items that are bought and sold which all contain their own surprising story.  The shop is owned by ladies man Mr Nakano and includes his sister Masayo and a young man Takeo who starts a relationship with Hitomi.

Once again Kawakami’s words just flow through each page of this novel exploring treasure hoarders and secret seekers bargain hunters and would be lovers. I did enjoy it but I have been spoilt with so many other great books this year that at the moment I don’t have the fondness for it like I have with Strange Weather.


Human Acts by Han Kang (Review Copy)

I have made no secret of how much I loved The Vegetarian and although I received both books at the same time as I decided to hold off as I don’t like reading the same authors work back to back unless it’s a series or collection. Like with Kawakami, Kang’s work past or future will always have a place on my bookshelves.

Human Acts is set around the Gwangju massacre, South Korea 1980 and is divided into 6 acts each act is from the perspective from people affected by the massacre & Kang wonderfully immerses herself in these stories and events trying to make a sense of & peace with something so horrific in her own birth place.

Delicate and harrowing all at the same time and once again have reenforced my love for Kang’s writing.


Do Not Say We Have Nothing by Madeline Thein  (Review Copy)

I started reading this just before the longlist of the The Man Booker Prize was announced so I was very happy to see it appear amongst the chosen books. I would highly recommend reading  The Four Books before this as for me this added to my enjoyment of Thein’s work.

Do Not Say We Have Nothing is a story of an extended family in China showing the lives of two generations – parents who have lived through General Mao’s Cultural Revolution and the children who became student protesters at Tiananmen Square in 1989.

Thien has crafted something grandly political, deep rooted in the daily details of daily life inside China, yet it’s still humorous and highly detailed.

Have you read or want to read any of these titles ? Are you fan of audiobooks ? Comments, suggestions and of course book recommendations always welcome.

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