As I mentioned on Twitter, on Wednesday, I found myself with around four hours to kill between finishing work and my lift home. After a long and indulgent lunch in Costa, I wandered down the high street to Waterstones. With an hour and a half to spend in the relatively small branch, it was lovely to have a natter and swap book recommendations with the staff, who I have come to know quite well over the years.
Of course, I couldn’t come away empty handed.
The Little Prince – Antoine De Saint-Exupery
I’d been aware of this book for a long time – I’d seen and heard it talked about, it’s been referenced in other books, the film is on Netflix – and it always seemed inevitable that I would one day purchase it. However, until now, I found myself distracted; sometimes it can be hard to justify spending the money on a very short book. Finally in my possession, I’m really looking forward to finally finding out what the story is about.
The white book – Han Kang
I loved The Vegetarian which won the Man Booker International prize in 2016, the prize for which this is shortlisted this year. So, upon discovering the existence of this beautifully designed work, I formulated a plan to hunt it down as soon as possible. As it happened, Waterstones had kindly placed copies on a display table so the hunt was brief. This is a book that I think could very easily go one of two ways with me. Either I shall find it poetic and beautiful, or I shall find it pretentious and possibly jarring. There is only one way to find out.
Why I am no longer talking to white people about race – Reni Eddo-Lodge
I have heard such good things about this book. Conversations about race and race-relations are so important and following a discussion with one of the Waterstones staff members about this book and the topic, I knew I couldn’t leave it on the shelf. Plus, I miss Sociology…
Never mind (Patrick Melrose novels #1) – Edward St. Aubyn
Seeing the advert (trailer?) for the adaption starring Benedict Cumberbatch as Patrick Melrose reminded me of these novels. I haven’t read them before but recollections of the covers were brought forward from the recesses of my memory. Having a spare few minutes at work I searched for our copy but was unsuccessful. However, by this point, I knew that I would happily purchase a copy if Waterstones had one available.
The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society- Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows
I was set to order this book immediately after seeing, for the first time, the trailer for the film adaptation; it looked wonderful and the source material seemed to have good reviews. However, discovering that it is written in the form of letters caused me to hesitate a lot and to feel quite disappointed. I have historically struggled with novels written in anything other than prose. I was worried that what looked like a really uplifting, poignant, yet fun read could actually make me quite frustrated simply due to my own issues with its format. Although still concerned, buoyed by the success I had had in the shop so far, and by the comments made by other customers, I decided that I wouldn’t put it down again; I would give it ago.
Have you read any of these books, what did you think? Let me know in the comments section below.