Top Ten Tuesday: Summer Reading List

Ah, summer. It doesn’t feel like summer in Scotland these days, but according to the calendar, it is indeed summer. The program for the Edinburgh Book Festival has come out, so that means most of my summer will be dedicated to reading in preparation for it, with a few others thrown in for good measure.

  1. Villa America by Liza Klaussman. It’s Klaussman, so I’m going to read it anyways, but she’s also coming to Edinburgh! I’ve been waiting to read this for a while, and for once it is available in the UK before it comes out in North America.
  2. In The Unlikely Event by Judy Blume. Enough said. And she’s not coming to Edinburgh.
  3. Bradstreet Gate by Robin Kirman. It’s described as a campus murder for fans of Tartt, Eugenides and Wolitzer. Yes please!
  4. The Way Things Were by Aatish Taseer. He’s coming to EdBookFest and I’m interested. Besides, he learned Sanskrit to write this book and I love me some Sanskrit.
  5. The Mark and the Void by Paul Murray. Loved Skippy Dies and he’ll be at EdBookFest.


  6. Man on Fire by Stephen Kelman. Will be appearing at EdBookFest with Paul Murray. And I will likely read Pigeon English as well because it’s already on my desk.
  7. The Unexpected Inheritance of Inspector Chopra by Vaseem Khan. Big buzz in India and I’m so glad it’s also being published in the UK.
  8. The Incarnations by Susan Barker. She’ll be at EdBookFest and I think this book is going to be BIG.
  9. The Ecliptic by Benjamin Wood. I saw him at EdBookFest when he was promoting his last novel, The Bellweather Revivals. Loved him, loved the book and he’ll be back in Edinburgh this summer.
  10. This is my wild card. Let’s keep it a mystery for now.

Top Ten Tuesday: Favorite Authors Edition


Listing one’s favorite authors is like picking your favorite children – it just shouldn’t be done and is messy business. And yet, here I am doing it just the same thanks to The Broke and The Bookish.

To make it a little harder on myself I am only including authors who are still alive and have written at least 3 books so far. I know that excludes a lot of writers, but I had to make the list manageable somehow. Continue reading

Top Ten Tuesday – Summer Reading


Who knew that making a Top Ten List could be so hard? I set certain limitations on myself for this list: no Advanced Readers Copies and at least some back list. I even included three titles from my 2014 TBR Pile Challenge, hosted by the Roof Beam Reader. And as always, Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by the lovelies over at The Broke and the Bookish.

Looking at the list now, I am realizing how terribly UN-diverse it seems. Rest assured, I will be reading other things this summer. I mean, two months and only 10 books? I can do better than that!

Top Ten Tuesday: The Best of 2014 (so far)


Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by the lovelies over at The Broke and the Bookish. This week’s theme is the top ten books of 2014 so far. So far in 2014 I have found very few books that have knocked it out of the ballpark for me, but there have still been some good reads. As always, these are in no particular order and links go back to my original review.

Top Ten Tuesday: Bookish Resolutions


Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by the lovelies over at The Broke and the Bookish. This week’s theme: Bookish Resolutions. While bookish to an extent, most of my resolutions have to do with blogging.

  1. Learn how to do really pretty graphics like Shannon over at River City Reading and Leah over at Books Speak Volumes.
  2. Go to more book related events in Edinburgh, especially at Looking Glass Books.
  3. Go to either the BEA in New York or the London Book Fair.
  4. Write more content that is not a book review.
  5. Learn what all my stats from WordPress mean and how i can use them more effectively.
  6. Read fewer books more carefully.
  7. Put myself out there and take more risks with the aim of increasing my audience at 52 Books or Bust.
  8. Participate in more events out there in the blogosphere like Bloggiesta.
  9. Expand my network of book bloggers in the UK.
  10. Enjoy books and everything have to offer.

Top Ten Tuesday: Best New-to-Me Authors of 2013


Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by the lovelies over at The Broke and the Bookish. This week’s theme: Best New-to-Me Authors of the year. Not surprisingly several of the authors mentioned hail from the UK.

1. Jenn Ashworth. The Friday Gospels is Ashworth’s third book, and yet I had never heard of her. It would appear that her talent hasn’t reached North America in any big way yet, but I can assure you that she is worth checking out.

2. Amber Dermont. She has an MFA from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop. Need i say more? The Starboard Sea is her first novel, though she has published numerous short stories.

3. Jennifer duBois. I can’t tell you how shocked I was to find out that Cartwheel was not her first novel, and that her previous work has met with much acclaim. This is a writer I should have known and should have read. And you probably should have as well.

4. Kristopher Jansma. His debut novel The Unchangeable Spots of Leopards blew my mind. Jansma is someone I’m going to be keeping my eye on.

5. Lisa O’Donnell. Closed Doors is this Scottish writer’s second novel, and I have her first, The Death of Bees, sitting on my desk as we speak. O’Donnell is a captivating storyteller.

6. Sathnam Sanghera. He was picked as one of the Waterstone’s Eleven this year and I can understand why. Marriage Material may have been one of my favorite books of the year. People in the UK are talking about Sanghera, but I don’t think he is so well known in North America.

7. Maria Semple. She seems to be on everyone’s list. Where’d You Go Bernadette is a funny and heart felt novel that was almost impossible to put down.

8. Graeme Simsion. Simsion, and his novel The Rosie Project,  have taken the world by storm. If there is one book this year that I’d recommend to just about anyone is it The Rosie Project. A perfect ray of sunshine from Australia.

9. Abigail Tarttelin. The Golden Boy was A.MAZ.ING. Tarttelin is an all around artist. This comes through in her writing as well. Unlike many of the other UK writers I’ve mentioned, Tarttelin is finding a fair amount of success on the other side of the ocean as well.

10. Mindy Quigley. An American writer with considerable ties to the UK. Her debut novel, A Murder in Mount Moriah, is highly entertaining. Light, humorous and insightful. And I guess I should mention that she is a good friend.

Top Ten Tuesday: My Winter TBR List

toptentuesdayTop Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by the lovelies at The Broke and the Bookish. This week’s theme: Winter TBR (to be read) List.

This first five on my list are no-brainers since, as always, I will be participating in Canada Reads. BAM! There you go.

I am also participating in Jazz Age January hosted by Leah at Books Speak Volumes, hence

That leaves two spots remaining. In truth I hate to pre-plan my reading, so I’m just going to leave them open.

What are you reading this winter? Anything I should know about?

Top Ten Tuesday: 2014 Book Releases I’m Dying To Read


I don’t often participate in memes, but when I do it is usually for Top Ten Tuesday hosted by The Broke and The Bookish.


nancy-horan1. Under the Wide and Starry Sky by Nancy Horan. I like books about real people. This one is about Robert Louis Stevenson and his love affair with an American divorcee. Do I smell a little scandal? Also, I really liked Horan last novel Loving Frank, about Frank Lloyd Wright.

local-customs2. Local Customs by Audrey Thomas. Thomas is one of Canada’s best (under-rated) writers and it has been a long time since she’s had a new book. Local Customs is also based on real life characters – the Governor of an African colony and the mysterious death of his poet wife.

astonish-me3. Astonish Me by Maggie Shipstead. I don’t even know anything about this aside from the fact that it is by Maggie Shipstead and that is enough to have me sold!

setting-sun4. The Setting Sun by Bart Moore-Gilbert. Moore-Gilbert is a South Asian historian whose stuff I read quite a bit of when I was in grad school. In this book he examines his family’s colonial past and the unwanted secrets that emerge. I can’t wait.

worst.person.ever5. Worst. Person. Ever. by Douglas Coupland. This book is already available in Canada, but doesn’t come out in the UK until later in the year. It’s Douglas Coupland. What can I say? He’s the voice of Gen X.

Okay, so that’s only five books, but maybe you can suggest five more that I should be dying to read!

Top Ten Books on My TBR List – Fall 2013

toptentuesdayTop Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and The Bookish. I don’t normally participate in memes, but this one grabbed my attention: Top Ten Books For Fall TBR. So here goes, the Top Ten Reads on my Fall TBR list (in no particular order).

1. Salinger by David Shields and Shane Salerno (September 2013). What can I say? I am a sucker for JD Salinger and have been since high school. Any new news about him is good news to me!

2. Cartwheel by Jennifer Du Bois (September 2013). I don’t know much about this title, but a slow and steady buzz has been building around it.

3. The Luminaries by Eleanor Catton (October 2013). Catton is one of those literary geniuses who needs to be read. This appears to be very different from her last novel, The Rehearsal, so I am cautiously looking forward to it.

4. MaddAddam by Margaret Atwood (August 2013). It’s Atwood. Need I say more?

5. Bellman and Black by Diane Setterfield (November 2013). I loved her first book, The Thirteenth Tale, so I am eager to see what she does with this one.

6. The Goldfinch by Donna Tarrt (October 2013). If you have not read The Secret History, go do it now. No really, get up, go to a bookstore/ library and read it now. You will not regret it. I have high hopes for The Goldfinch.

7. The Case of the Love Commandos by Tarquin Hall (October 2013). If you have not read any installments in Hall’s Vish Puri, then get out there and get reading. These humorous detective novels are set in India and Hall gives a real taste for life there.

8. Five Days at Memorial by Sherry Fink (Spetember 2013). Not normally my type of thing, but I haven’t heard on bad thing about it. And I need to read more non-fiction.

9. The Eliot Girls by Krista Bridge (April 2013). The book came out a couple months ago, but it is from a smaller Canadian press and I think it needs a little love.

10. Lookaway, Lookaway by Wilton Barnhardt (August 2013). This book appeared out of no where for me. I had never heard of it and all of the sudden it was everywhere. And the reviews were good.