Friday, 8 January 2010

Good News, Bad News, Old News

The postman brought me a lovely haul of books today, including some additional copies of OLD DOGS so I am afraid that Rob, Dorte and Norm will have to suffer as a consequence. If you would like to e-mail me your addresses I will get a copy sent out to you. If you don't e-mail me your addresses, I shall send you two copies.

And now, back to some old news (since I have not yet caught up).

Ian Rankin duped by indie rock musician. And also ranked number one by library goers.

A most excellent review in the New York Journal of Books for Allan Guthrie's HARD MAN. The Toronto Star reviews Denise Mina's STILL MIDNIGHT. While The Scotsman reviews Aly Monroe's WASHINGTON SHADOW.

Part 2 of the Alexander McCall Smith Christmas story. And part 3. (Did I say I haven't caught up yet?)

If you're in Edinburgh on 21st January, why not go to the launch of LOSS - the third in the wonderful Gus Dury series, by Tony Black.

And finally, from the Guardian, an article on reading and relationships. Ewan and I have different tastes in books. I like crime fiction, he likes books where not a lot happens. However there are books where our tastes cross. He's introduced me to some of his favourites - such as Magnus Mills' RESTRAINT OF BEASTS - and I've introduced him to some of mine - most notably Daniel Woodrell's WINTER'S BONE and Donald Ray Pollock's KNOCKEMSTIFF - and they are all now favourites of both of us. I'm glad that, like me, he's a big reader, but we don't need to share each others' tastes (although it's lovely when we can find a book that we both enthuse over. Having said that, it's also great to read a book that we have completely differing opinions on.) I am more likely to enjoy something he likes, than he is something I like. Not sure what that says :o)

Ewan also shares something with my mum - he's not keen on my stuff. I offered him a copy of OLD DOGS and he just looked at me in horror. "Why don't you give it to someone who would really appreciate it" he said, kindly.

So what about you, dear readers? How do your reading relationships fare?


  1. My other half has never read any of the books I've written. I even did a coffee table book that remained firmly shut. If I get, 'that's a nice cover,' I feel I'm doing well.

    Many thanks for the book by the way - I do appreciate it!

  2. Oh, Old Dogs is good news!

    My husband has not read any of my manuscripts yet, but when I read five-star crime fiction that I think a male reader will also appreciate, I lend him the book, so we have a handful of favourites in common. Mostly Scandinavian writers as he does not read much English.

    Do you remember that I seemed to have lost my copy of ´Go to Helena Handbasket´? I had just forgotten that I had lent it to my sister who just loved it!

  3. My husband does not read mysteries - except for mine. He thinks they are the best in the world, but since he has nothing to compare them to, he could equally say they are the worst he's ever read. (He is really good at pointing out things I should change in the manuscripts, though, considering he doesn't read mysteries.)

    Looking forward to Old Dogs, Donna!

  4. One of the last things my mother said to me before she died last year was she wished that either Megan or me would write an uplifting book. Why did we see the world as such a dark place?
    On the plus side, my husband tells me everything I write is brilliant. And with Megan he is telling the truth.

  5. I read almost exclusively crime fiction these days and my husband, Prof P reads mostly non-fiction. We are both avid readers and read rather than watch TV or go out in the evening (as we both are old, and tired after work/commuting!). Prof P has recently been reading many WW2 books, eg several by Andrew Roberts (Masters and Commanders, and currently one on WW2), Winston Churchill (the five-volume WW2 history) and loads of others like that. For christmas though he branched out a bit and I got him books on Edward III, Niall Ferguson and one on railway history in the UK. Oh, and Bad Science by Ben Goldacre as it was £2.99 in the WHS Times promotion offer. I think Prof P mainly likes military and navy history though I do recommend some crime fiction and he recently loved the Stieg Larsson trilogy and Blood Safari by Deon Meyer, though he usually criticises the denouments of crime fic as being unrealistic. He also liked the Martin Edwards books he read and Camilleri, and he is a big fan of John Lecarre.

    Me - I'm very into translated crime fiction at the moment, esp nothern europe, but i have many favourites eg Temple, Connelly etc - and i am always finding new authors thanks to Karen (Euro Crime)'s suggestions.

  6. While I'm too single to share books with a partner, pretty much every book I've read has subsequently been read by my Mum, whose regular trips to the library involve getting a selection that includes at least one crime/mystery, one fantasy/sci-fi, a biography and something else, like a historical novel. I'm more picky about what I'll read than she is, but if I like something, she'll almost always like it too.

  7. I'll put all his books in the skip.

  8. Rob - At least when they DO say you're brilliant, you know it must be true :o) Not that Ewan's ever said I'm brilliant...

    Dorte - thank you - I'm glad your sister enjoyed it.

    Barbara - now that's the best of both worlds! He's being totally honest there :o)

    Patti - sometimes the sunniest people write the darkest books...And your husband's right. Megan IS brilliant.

    Maxine - has he tried Andrey Taylor? I've found some real gems in translated fiction. I have a special shelf of translated crime fiction still to be read that I'm looking forward to.

    Vincent - your mum sounds great. My mum wouldn't touch most of the stuff I read with somebody else's bargepole.

    Bookwitch - LOL. You're marvellous.

  9. My wife says "What's a book"?

  10. LOL Jim - that just leaves more space in the house for all YOURS :o)