Books I’ve loved lately

How I Became a Famous Novelist by Steve Hely

I first heard about this book aaaaages ago and of course I wanted to read it on the basis of the title alone. But I started it and couldn’t get into it so gave up. Then Catherine Ryan Howard recommended it so I decided to give it another go and I’m so glad I did. I really enjoyed it. It’s very funny, lots of good publishing-industry jokes (though I don’t think you need to be involved in the publishing industry to enjoy it) and, while I was reading it on the plane to LA, Stella said, “What are you laughing at?” What more recommendation do you need?

Lessons in Laughing Out Loud by Rowan Coleman

I love Rowan Coleman – she’s an online friend – but I’ve loved her books for much longer than I’ve known her. In fact, I remember reading her first book and thinking this is what I want to do

Lessons in Laughing Out Loud is a wonderful book. It’s funny and sweet, but it’s also sad and deals with a serious issue – actually a couple of serious issues – in a sensitive way. I loved it.

Heidi by Johanna Spyri

Heidi was one of my favourite books growing up and I have very fond memories, so when I saw it was free for the Kindle I had to get it. I was surprised at how clearly I remember it and for about the first half I couldn’t quite believe it had been probably 30+ years since I last read it. The second half I couldn’t remember as clearly and there’s a LOT of religion and Bible references that I have no recollection of at all, but in the main it was just as lovely as I remember. (And it still made me want to eat great chunks of cheese and sausage and bread and drink milk warm from a goat…) (Maybe not the goat milk as much as the rest.)

21 Century Dodos by Steve Stack

So this book is right up my street. Yes, I’m of the generation that likes to sit around reminiscing about the Walkman, Midland Bank, Texan Bars, typewriters, etc. It actually made me nostalgic about stuff I didn’t even realise had gone: when was the last time you saw a Capri or a Vauxhall Viva? Everyone waved Woolworths off, but what about Curtess, Thresher, Mr Byrite?! It brought back lots of lovely memories and I really hope there’s a second volume. (What would you want to see in it?)

Chitty Chitty Bang Bang Flies Again by Frank Cottrell Boyce

I’m always a smidge unsure of sequels to classic books written by different authors, but Frank Cottrell Boyce is the author of one of my favourite books – Millions – and so I thought I’d give it a go. And I LOVED it. It’s funny, sweet, there’s a teeny bit of peril – I actually started reading it to see if I thought Harry would like it and then just read the whole thing. I’m sure Harry’s going to love it too. (Haven’t read it to him yet, because he wants to read to me – to get a certificate!)

Which books have you loved lately?

Click on the pics for links to Amazon. 

4 thoughts on “Books I’ve loved lately

  1. I loved David Sedaris’s Squirrel Seeks Chipmunk which was dry and funny and dark and also very short (v short stories so easy to read for me.)

  2. I loved Heidi when I was little. There must have been one year when nobody knew what to get me for Christmas… but as I was telling everyone my favourite book was Heidi and I didn’t have a copy, I ended up with at least 4 hardback copies that year. I still have at least two of them. Haven’t read the story in ages though, I think I’d be worried too that it wouldn’t be the same.

  3. There are some great sounding books here, I keep seeing people talking about Frank Cottrell Bryce at the moment, I think I need to give him a go.

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