Do your friends give you Christmas books? I’ve forgotten most of the toys I received at Christmas as a child but I still remember many of the books.
So, today I thought I’d look ahead to the festive season and share some Christmas books I hope to receive this year.
On the fiction front, I’m keen to read Conclave by Robert Harris. Set in the Vatican, it’s about the election of a pope. I heard someone review it recently and they described it as an intelligent page turner. Vatican stories are usually good for intrigue and conspiracy and this one sounds like an enjoyable read.
I’m also keen to get my hands on a copy of Ian McEwan’s Nutshell. McEwan is sometimes hit and miss with me. Mostly I enjoy his novels but I found one or two almost unreadable. Nutshell sounds quirky. I’ll have to wait and see if that’s a good thing.
For a longer read, I’ve heard good things about the Hanya Yanagihara novel A Little Life. It’s about four Massachusetts school friends who move to New York where their relationships deepen and darken. Some readers rave about Yanagihara’s writing while others describe A Little Life as overly long and depressing. I think it sounds interesting so I plan to make up my own mind if I get the chance.
Politics on the Christmas books list
Former Taoiseach John Bruton reviewed Cameron at 10 — The Verdict by Anthony Seldon and Peter Snowdon. He says it’s a well-researched and enjoyable read.
Trump Revealed — An American Journey of Ambition, Ego, Money and Power by Michael Kranish is also on my list.
Another non-fiction title that I would like to read is The Twilight of the Elites by Chris Hayes. I saw someone tweeting about this and it looks like an interesting read.
Before I end, I thought I’d include a quick look back on the stand-out book of the year which, for me, was Vanessa Ronan’s The Last Days of Summer.
I love how Ronan creates and sustains a world that draws you in so that you lose all sense of time as you turn the pages. The story takes place in a small, rural American community. When Jasper Curtis returns from Huntsville State Penitentiary, he claims to be done with trouble. But Jasper’s sister Lizzie fears that trouble isn’t done with him. Their neighbours distrust him and there’s vengeance in the air. If you like stories about revenge and redemption, keep an eye out for The Last Days of Summer. I think it’s a good read.