My Photo

Bookish Places


Blog powered by Typepad

« A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess | Main | Counting Down to the Baileys Women's Prize Longlist! »



You have lots of great books to look forward to! I read All Passion Spent many years ago and found it wonderful. I read it while traveling in Europe and I think that's probably why it also resonated with me. Whichever book you choose by Vita I am sure you will enjoy it!


I will never know how you keep so many different books straight. I have tried and I always wind up reading one book after a day or so.


I do have a nice pile of books on the go at the moment actually. I am not entirely sure which Virago to pick now--VSW sounds wonderful and I am so glad to hear you liked All Passion Spent--but you know how it is when faced with a shelf of books--now I am wavering--which to choose! ;) It is nice you have fond memories attached to the book--I have a few of those myself!


It's weird--but I rarely have a problem with keeping track of the different stories. I can almost always pick up a book, too, that has been set aside for a while and pick up the thread. I will say, though, I rarely have more than one nonfiction on the go at once however--not sure why. Too many facts to keep straight I guess. I like having a variety of books to choose from which will meet my mood on any given day. But when one book really grabs me, then I really have to stick to it!

Di McDougall

My favourite is All Passion it many times and what a delight the audiobook is. It is read by Dame Wendy Hiller

Liz F

I read The Disappeared a couple of years ago and thought it was a good book but I found it very sad. It certainly opened my eyes about what happened in Cambodia as I didn't really know much about it until that point.
Good luck with your modernist reading! I've always found it quite a difficult style to enjoy and have got to the point now that I have no qualms about giving up on books which aren't working for me and not starting anything marked 'experimental'! There are too many books out there that I do want to read to waste time on things which aren't my taste!

Despite having several books by Vita Sackville West on my shelves, I still haven't got round to actually reading any so there are no recommendations from me but I would say do read William Trevor as part of your Irish reading if you get a chance. He really is a master of the short story and I think that Claire Keegan must have read quite a lot of his work because her stories are very reminiscent of his.
As for my reading - I am currently reading The Woman in the Picture by Katherine McMahon which is the follow-up to The Crimson Rooms and wonderful, plus Goodbye Piccadilly which is the first of a WW1 series by Cynthia Harrod Eagles. As you might imagine, it is very readable although there are a lot of different characters which I am currently having a bit of trouble keeping track of (maybe I need to concentrate a bit more or not read it when there are other distractions around!)
Still plugging on with Mansfield Park and hurrying to read Rising Ground as there is a huge waiting list for it and I am determined to finish it before it goes back!
If that wasn't enough I am also re-reading Baltimore Blues by Laura Lippman for light relief. I want to read the rest of the Tess Monaghan series but it has been so long since I last read one that I needed to re-read the first. I had forgotten how good she is so now plan to keep going with the series as I think I have most of them already.
There are signs of spring here with snowdrops and crocus flowering and daffodils coming up but it is VERY cold still so still need the winter clothes!


You are most ambitious! well done!
I look forward to your progress!

Christine Harding

All Passion Spent is wonderful. It's written in lovely, understated prose, and Lady Slane is a woman at peace with herself, facing death with dignity, able to look back on her long life without regret, and to live for the now.


Yay for March!We could always try Barnes together later in the year if you'd like :) I have read Vita's The Edwardians and enjoyed it. A have a few others of hers I haven't gotten around to yet but I will one of these days!

Gallimaufry Book Studio

Oohh, you've got lots of good stuff to be tucking into!

I just finished 'Wild Things' a book about children's literature which gives an interesting look at kids lit today. The three authors have a blogging background so it's an engaging book to read. Am partway though Brian Morton's 'Florence Gordon' and quite taken with the 75-yr-old cantankerous protagonist. Next up might be 'Etta and Otto and Russell and James', about another older woman and those around her. (Hmm, an unplanned theme is going on here.)

Isn't Dalkey Archive wonderful, just their 'Best European Literature' collections are such a pleasure. - Julé


I have decided to start with All Passion since it seems so well received by readers--I do like the sound of the plot, too! I will have to see if I can find the audio book for it--sounds like a good story to listen to as well.


Had to look up Rising Ground and it sounds really good! As it is only in hardcover right now (and I don't expect my library to have it--) will just add it to my wishlist. Oh, I have both the Cynthia Harrod Eagles and Katharine McMahon on the top of one of my bookstacks next to my bed---I love KM--really want to read that sequel and CHE is always good. If I didn't already have so many books started and an additional three ready to begin now--I would pick at least one of them up! ;) Let me know if they are especially good and I will bump them up the pile. The book I just started for my class is most definitely in the modernist lit camp--I am just reading it with an open mind and going with the flow--since it is a class book and we will be talking about it I want to try and get through it, but it is a story where you really have to just suspend belief and let it go off in the crazy direction it is going. I don't usually do well with books like this--that are so out there, but I am trying to keep an open mind in this case! I am with you otherwise--I like to stick to my comfort reads. I had a feeling The Disappeared would be sad--it looks a fairly short read at least. I wish I could just sit in my nice comfy rocker all day tomorrow and read, but..... One more cold day for us and then by Friday and the weekend we are supposed to have pretty mild temps finally. Bring them on, as I am ready! Nothing green here yet!


I think I am more greedy than anything else--a little crazy, too, considering how slow a reader I am! I will have to check back in in a week or so and will let you know how it is going!


Just the sort of book I love! I am going to start with All Passion Spent since so many people have enjoyed it! I also like the idea of a book narrated by an older woman--sounds like just the sort of story I am in need of! :)


I'd go for that! If we managed the Burgess anything else would have to be easier right? At least plot-wise!! I have The Edwardians as well as a couple of other books by her and almost reached for it since I love that era. I have not yet read anything by her but I think I will like whichever I choose--am leaning towards All Passion Spent at the moment, so I think I will just start reading and see how it goes!


I do have lots of good books to chose from--almost too many and it is an impossible task to choose which books to take with me to work each morning! I try and set out a few the night before but then in the morning I inevitably want to add another book or two to my bag, which is entirely unrealistic!!

I sort of like reading about women of a certain age--and older, too! Have you read Stone Angel by Margaret Laurence--talk about cantankerous--it is one of my very favorite books! You have a great little stack of books going/to look forward to as well! I especially like the sound of that last book and have added it to my wishlist as well. And yes, Dalkey Archive is excellent--they have a very impressive backlist. I love small publishers like them--so nice to see a hole series of books translated from Hebrew, too! Happy reading, Julé!

vicki (bibliolathas / skiourophile)

All Passion Spent is absolutely beautiful. I'd also recommend The Heir if you want something short and wonderful.


I am reading All Passion Spent right now and must heartily agree that it is indeed beautiful. I had not idea she was such a good writer! I also have The Heir on hand and might have to go grab it as well. Always nice to have a shorter book to slip into the reading pile.


I'm really keen to get started on The Disappeared. I've heard so many good things but I'm sure Liz is right and it's very sad.
Thanks for mentioning the readalong and for participating.
I've got a few of Simone Schwarz-Bart's novels but never got to them. I think she's very good.


I need to get going on it--I have it sitting by my bed. I am a little hesitant now knowing it is going to be sad, but it does look good. I had never heard of Simone Schwarz-Bart before, but I am very much enjoying this book--she is a very good storyteller--lots of great description that makes you feel like you really know these people, but there is some other quality there as well--maybe a little dreamy?


My guess is that by the time you get to read this comment, you would have almost finished reading All Passion Spent already. But I still want to say, I love the book! And glad you are enjoying it too. :)


I'm not as far in as you might think, though it is an excellent story and given more reading time I would indeed be finished already! I had no idea VSW was such a wonderful writer and I am loving the story. I can see why you love it. I am in the middle of several books and it is always such a dilemma deciding which to pick up--so I tend to read a bit here and then a bit there. Bring on the weekend and more reading time! ;)

The comments to this entry are closed.

Books Read in 2020

Books Read in 2019

Books Read in 2018

Books Read in 2017

Books Read in 2016

Books Read in 2015