Last But One Book Haul of 2018

I still have some books that are winging their way towards me, and I may still be swayed by one or two reviews or recommendations before I close up book-buying-shop next year. Of course, I will still have the Asymptote Book Club subscription to stave off my hunger pangs. And a couple of hundred of unread books on my shelves…

So, with that caveat, what are my most recent acquisitions?

First of all, #EU27Project noblesse oblige, I had to find a book for Bulgaria and Slovakia. Well, strictly speaking, I’d already found a book for Slovakia but then I  met a translator from Slovakian, Julia Sherwood, at the Asymptote Book Club meeting, and so I had to buy one of the books she translated. This is Pavel Vilikovsky’s Fleeting Snow, a gentle set of reminiscences about a long marriage as the wife of the narrator gradually starts to lose her memory. A very different novel about the fall of Communism in Bulgaria, Party Headquarters by Georgi Tenev seems to not have found many fans abroad, but that rather incited me to read it and make up my own mind.

From publishers, I received two crime novels to review. Bitter Lemon Press sent Petra Hammersfahr’s novel The Sinner formed the basis for the recent TV series, although the setting has been changed from Germany to the US. Many of the links are more obvious in the book than in the TV series, so it’s interesting to compare the two. Meanwhile, Simon and Schuster sent RJ Bailey’s  Winner Kills All, featuring female Personal Protection Officer Sam Wylde. In the wake of the huge success of the TV series The Bodyguard, this book series may do very well indeed!

Most of the other new arrivals were the result of reading other people’s blogs. So hereby I am naming and shaming them! Kaggsy’s Bookish Ramblings is responsible for Portraits without Frames: Poems by Lev Ozerov, essentially a group portrait of Russian writers of the 1920s and 30s in free verse form. Jacquiwine’s Journal needs to take a bow for Brian Moore’s The Lonely Passion of Judith Hearne, although it may take a while until I summon up the courage to read this very sad tale. Melissa Beck, who blogs at Bookbinder’s Daughter, is the one who first drew my attention to Odessa Stories by Isaac Babel, translated by Boris Dralyuk (who also is one of the main translators of Ozerov). Last but not least, Kate at Books Are My Favourite and Best, with her #6Degrees link for December made me stumble across Black Run by Antonio Manzini, and I remembered I’d come across it before, mentioned by another Italian writer, and my ordering finger was once again hyper-active.

Who needs divorce lawyers sucking you dry, when your online friends also make sure they finish off your budget through their recommendations?

12 thoughts on “Last But One Book Haul of 2018”

    1. I’d heard of it… you know how sometimes you think you’ve read it, because you know the title? But then, when I read Jacqui’s review, I realised I hadn’t.

  1. LOL! I feel no guilt, because it really is a marvellous book and will no doubt be one of my reads of the year. Good luck with the ban – I don’t know that I could do this, although I *am* trying very hard to rein things in as there will no doubt be seasonal bookish arrivals…

    1. I really, really need to cut down on any spending this coming year. Not only for ‘buying out my ex’s share of the house’ purposes, but also saving for that trip to Japan with the boys in 2021. So the latter should be an even better motivator than the former!

  2. I’ll second Susan’s reply! So glad you succumbed to the idea of Judith Hearne. It’s a brilliant book, beautifully written. I do hope you like whenever the time is right.

  3. That’s what friends are for, Marina Sofia – making sure you buy books! 😉 – You did get some interesting-sounding novels, there. And now I’ll have a few I want to explore, myself.’ve done your share for my book buying…

  4. Phew! I’m glad Melissa took the blame for Odessa Stories, it might have been me. I’m about to catch up with my billet about it. But in a way, she deserves it because I also bought it after reading her review! Best crime ever: being responsible of book purchases.

    I have Black Run on the shelf, I should get to it.

    1. Heard mixed reports about Black Run, but anything to do with skiing sounds good to me… Have you got snow yet? We just have ice to scrape off cars in the morning.

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