Read in 2023
The Big Midweek
Steve Hanley, Olivia Piekarski Finished: Dec 28
Easy read, and revealing perspective that gives a bigger picture of The Fall. Nice to get a sense of how there were more talented people that came together and made it happen, and that MES needed them as much as they him. Reticent as he is to talk about himself you get some glimpses of self refelction, but mainly told deadpan and all the better for it.
Hugh Aldersey-Williams Finished: Dec 24
Enjoyed it, but felt that it wasn't the best format - feltlike it could've been a series of distinct articles - found it hard to retain much by the end. Probably my fault for rushing.
The Forensic Records Society
Magnus Mills Finished: Dec 3
Lovely little allegory - clear enough even for me to get it, and nice details.Slightly ran out of steam.
Angry White Pyjamas
Robert Twigger Finished: Nov 25
Interesting journey and examination of his reasons for doing the training as well and interrogating others reasons. Nice pen portraits of all the people. Alos interesting ideas of the Japanese culture.'torture disguised as celebration'
25 Years of VIZ
William Cook Finished: Nov 23
Writer was a bit too much of a fan, but interesting to see just how long they'd been at it before it got really big. Good variety of artwork and behind the scenes of the creation.
Alan Rickman Finished: Oct 21
Took a while to understand that despite a seemingly endless succession of meals and names his obsession for the work came through, and he obviously really loved the work, and most of the things around it. Very much a shorthand style compared to the brief selection of angsty early diaries. Became more affecting has his mortality became more apparent, even though it wasn't mentioned. An insight to a type of self reflective diary - not necessarily one meant for publication.
Kirino Finished: Oct 1
Very much liked the characters and kept me interested all the way through.
The Underground Railroad
Colston Whitehead Finished: Sep 9
Rattled through it - characters grabbed me to pay attention to the horrors of slavery, beyond the 'yeah slavery is bad' to the specifics and then laid bare via the different situations and chapters. All very good.
Mary Roach Finished: Aug 27
Great fun. Really liked how she wrote it, Breezy and Informative, funny and curious.
Frank Herbert Finished: Aug 20
Petered out slightly but enjoyed a bit of old school, sort of near future hard traditional SciFi
The Female Man
Joanna Russ Finished: Aug 12
Could only make sense of it by cribbing the wikipedia entry and wasn't worth the bother
Put me back on my bike
William Fotheringham Finished: Aug 6
Good on the context of the time ands eemed like e well rounding picture of the man.
Marabou Stork Nightmares
Irvine Welsh Finished: Aug 1
Funny and strange start. As it went on you wondered where it was all going, kind of knowing that it wouldn't end well, but I wasn't quite prepared with the sharp turn to nasty and brutal. Felt like an authentic ending.
Greg Jenner Finished: Jul 22
Caught myself and got bored of the topic.
Patrick Wall Finished: Jul 12
Started interesting and then got more wooly and unfocused. Became quite dull.
Tim Spector Finished: Jul 2
One of those that could probably be a bit condensed - but interesting opinions about diet and nutrition, that we have to wait for the science to see how prescient they are.
Just Enough Research
Erika Hall Finished: Jun 26
Not really what I was after.
- Black Box Thinking Matthew Syed Finished: Jun 19
Going to Sea in a Sieve
Danny Baker Finished: Jun 7
Fun - nicely written on how he ended up in and around music - especially froma working class background.
Ring for Jeeves
Pelham G. Wodehouse Finished: Jun 4
Enjoyable as always but no Wooster does leave a little whole. This all came together in the end satisfactorily, but not with the usual panache.
The Status Game
Will Storr Finished: May 21
Was keen to read this, as it's a fascinating subject. It's a useful lense to apply to how people behave. Great on the different types of status games, and how they happen in different proportions in a variety of situations.
Charlie Higson Finished: Apr 3
Mental - took some turns and then some more.
Touching from a distance
Deborah Curtis Finished: Mar 26
Honest perspective of a figure often mythologised due to his early death.
Lost at Sea
Jon Ronson Finished: Mar 22
- A Nervous Breakdown Anton Chekhov Finished: Mar 14
A Visit from the Goon Squad
Jennifer Egan Finished: Mar 9
Wasn't sure how I'd get on with the shifting timelines and characters, sometimes hard to follow what's happening to who, but then it all seems to coalesce and the threads draw together. Especially liked the slide pages, which could have been gimmicky , but they worked and felt like an authentic voice.
Bedsit Disco Queen
Tracey Thorn Finished: Feb 21
Starting a trend for me of reading musicians biogs - enjoy how they discover music and are often incredibly surprised by their own success.
King of the Ants
Charlie Higson Finished: Feb 13
Why We Sleep
Matthew Walker Finished: Feb 4
Interesting things in it, but spoiled somewhat by him overreaching on some things and cherry picking others.
Pelham G. Wodehouse Finished: Jan 22
Either you think the prose is charmingly and cleverly witty and amusing or you don't I do. Does show it's a age a little with the occasional phrase or word that pulls one up short, but japes ensue with much mirth.
Ian McEwen Finished: Jan 2
I imagine that the premise, whilst great, could've been handled badly and gone wrong. But it's really good. Lovely balance between ruminations and moving the plot along. Enjoyed.