I did my usual mammoth book buy last week and thought I’d share the results with you. Hodges Figgis were doing an offer on Vintage Classic Editions and so I took advantage and bought three for the price of two. I have devoured most of Richard Yates’ output but found two on offer that I haven’t read yet; Eleven Kinds of Loneliness and Cold Spring Harbour. Yates is familiar to modern readers as the author of Revolutionary Road which was made into a film in 2008 starring Leonardo Di Caprio and Kate Winslet. He is a phenomenal writer and I’m looking forward to reading him again after a long break.
Natasha Walter’s Living Dolls is a book that I have been meaning to read for a long time. I’m interested in the return of sexism (did it ever really go away?) and how young women are increasingly relying on their sexuality for their self-esteem.
Having read a bit about Edward St. Aubyn I was excited to start his trilogy Some Hope. I’m only a few chapters in but am very much enjoying it. I won’t give too much away as I’m sure I’ll devote a whole post to him in the next few weeks, but suffice to say his talent is making me both downcast and jealous so far.
I had a conversation with a very well read friend of mine a couple of weeks ago and mentioned to him that I have neglected to read any classic literature in the last while. I always used to balance my reading and include a couple of classics for every three or four modern books I read. I think as a writer it’s important to educate oneself and read for education as much as pleasure. Anyway I intend to address this recent imbalance and with this in mind I bought Nabokov’s Lolita. It’s a disgrace that I haven’t read this before now as it’s cited by many writers as a masterclass in style. I also picked up another classic, Graham Greene’s The End Of The Affair, as part of the Hodges Figges offer.