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September 2013 Reading Round-Up

It’s now getting chilly. We’ve had a few nice days but the weather’s definitely on the turn. Not so surprisingly I read a fair amount this month, though not as much as I may have because life happens and sometimes you have to take time out. You may remember I sent a tweet out some months ago regarding my aunt who had cancer for the third time. She died last week following complications during the fourth comeback of the cancer. A few days later my father was given a diagnosis. His has been caught early, but it’s not a good time and the recent death has caused extra anxiety for him. So reading slowed down towards the end of the month.

The Books

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Anya Von Bremzen: Mastering The Art Of Soviet Cooking – Von Bremzen looks at each decade of USSR history in the context of food, simultaneously introducing the reader to her family and life in Moscow. Very good, though the writing style was odd.


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Andrea Zuvich: His Last Mistress – The story of the love affair between the Duke of Monmouth (Charles II’s son) and Henrietta Wentworth. A good use of history, a bad book.

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Bee Ridgway: The River Of No Return – When Nick jumps from the 1800s to 2013 he has no idea he’s a time traveller but there are many such people and some are enemies of the Guild. A comedic historical fantasy.

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Martin Wagner: Deutschland – Three stories of different members of the same family each getting to grips with free will, choice, and the affects those aspects have on a person. Greatly recommended.

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Mary Stewart: Stormy Petrel – A teacher, who is also a writer, goes on what is supposed to be a peaceful holiday to a Scottish isle, only to find her cottage entered in to by someone claiming to be the resident. Fantastic descriptions and engrossing, all except for the plot which is pretty poor.

Joint favourite this month are The River Of No Return, which I loved for its cleverness and comedy, and Deutschland which is a masterful blend of short story and novel. I didn’t get on with His Last Mistress at all, but whilst Stormy Petrel was nothing to write home about, ironically, it showed a lot of promise in regards to Stewart’s other work.

Quotation Report

Don’t be like Nick from The River Of No Return – if you choose to return to the past having lived in the future (our present), modern phrases just do not work, and as much as the person you fancy (ah, they may not understand that either) seems modern, they really aren’t. Even if their actions indicate otherwise.

Not a bad month of reading, considering. Roll on October, maybe if you’re quick enough summer will come back sooner and hopefully you won’t be such an upsetting month either.

What was your favourite book this month (or week if you round-up each week)?



October 2, 2013, 6:49 am

I’m sorry, Charlie, what a terrible illness.
But I’m sure your father is getting over so he’ll be absolutely healthy soon.

Hope October brings only good things :)


October 2, 2013, 7:17 am

I’m so sorry for the loss of your aunt, and for your father’s diagnosis. Best wishes to him, and to you. <3

I tried The River of No Return, but I didn't get along with it. The time travel thing doesn't really do it for me.


October 2, 2013, 1:46 pm

You’ve had a really good reading month considering what has been going on. I’m ever so sorry to hear about your aunt’s death and your father’s diagnosis. You and your family will be in my thoughts and prayers.

Literary Feline

October 3, 2013, 1:29 am

I am sorry about your aunt, Charlie. And about your dad’s diagnosis. It’s good that they caught it early. I’m thinking of you and your family and sending good thoughts our way.

I’m trying to remember if I have A River of No Return. I think I do. Or else it’s on my wish list.

Here’s to a healthy and fun October!


October 3, 2013, 8:20 pm

I’m so sorry to hear about your aunt. My sympathies to you and your family. It’s good that your dad’s illness was caught early…I’m sending healing vibes his way!


October 4, 2013, 7:14 pm

I’m so sorry to hear about your aunt my dear :( and your dad, my dad’s been caught early as well, so I know how freaky that can feel, but it certainly isn’t a good time for it to fall on you guys.

I read a lot of Rainbow Rowell this month, I think she may have been my highlight.



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