Read Scotland 2015 discussion

17 views

Comments Showing 1-20 of 20 (20 new)    post a comment »
dateDown arrow    newest »

message 1: by James (new)

James | 16 comments Made a quicker start than expected and I’ve covered two volumes so far.

#1. I started with How to be bothby Ali Smith. Not a very Scottish book but the author was born in Inverness. Having a strong plot line is not one of its plus points, but it has loads of other strengths, and I really enjoyed it. Not everyone’s cup of tea.

#2. The Man in the QueueThe Man in the by Josephine Tey. I came across this through members of Read Scotland 2014, and gave it a try (Thanks to the library). Initially I wasn’t keen on the solution to the mystery but, on reflection, I actually enjoyed the read. It was just so wonderfully quaint and dated - so much a book of its time. Thanks for cluing me into this one.


message 2: by Peggy (new)

Peggy (peggyherself) | 162 comments Mod
Jim wrote: "Made a quicker start than expected and I’ve covered two volumes so far.

#1. I started with How to be bothby Ali Smith. Not a very Scottish book but the author was born in Inverne..."


Jim, The Man in the Queue wasn't my favorite Tey but it was good. If you like vintage mystery, like I do, she is a good one to read though!


message 3: by James (new)

James | 16 comments Peggy wrote: "Jim wrote: "Made a quicker start than expected and I’ve covered two volumes so far.

#1. I started with How to be bothby Ali Smith. Not a very Scottish book but the author was bor..."


Peggy,
Which Tey would you recommend?


message 4: by Peggy (new)

Peggy (peggyherself) | 162 comments Mod
Jim wrote: "Peggy wrote: "Jim wrote: "Made a quicker start than expected and I’ve covered two volumes so far.

#1. I started with How to be bothby Ali Smith. Not a very Scottish book but the ..."


Jim there are several good ones. I enjoyed Miss Pym Disposes.Brat Farrar and The Franchise Affair are suppose to be a couple of her best. If you like history she has one thats a little different. Her series inspector is laid up in the hospital and to entertain himself he sets out to solve the mystery of Richard II and the murder of the princes in the tower.

Here are a couple write ups on Tey and her books from bloggers who specialize in vintage mystery that might interest you.
The Passing Tramp
Tipping My Fedora


message 5: by Peggy (new)

Peggy (peggyherself) | 162 comments Mod
Peggy wrote: "Jim wrote: "Peggy wrote: "Jim wrote: "Made a quicker start than expected and I’ve covered two volumes so far.

#1. I started with How to be bothby Ali Smith. Not a very Scottish b..."


I forgot to mention the title of the Richard II one! The Daughter of Time


message 6: by James (new)

James | 16 comments Thanks Peggy,
I've seen a copy of 'Brat Farrar' in my local library. So I'll try and get it there soon.


message 7: by James (new)

James | 16 comments #3 - Read ‘Something like Happy’ - a set of short stories by John Burnside.
Brilliant writing and really absorbing stories – mainly about lonely people (lonely both inside and outside of relationships) whose lives have gone off-track – it’s a cruel world. Very poignant, moving – at the same time I didn’t find much lightness in this set and it produced a bit of a downer in my mood. So I can give it loads of praise but not a recommendation. I really liked his novel ‘Glister’ and will definitely get some other works by John Burnside.


message 8: by James (new)

James | 16 comments #4 The Visitors by Simon Sylvester. A mystery thriller set in the Scottish Islands. This book was the Waterstone’s Scotland book of the month for February – great success for a first novel. Definitely worth a read, it has strong supernatural elements with several tales of the mythological ‘selkies’ that inhabit the coasts of Scotland.


message 9: by Peggy (new)

Peggy (peggyherself) | 162 comments Mod
Jim wrote: "#4 The Visitors by Simon Sylvester. A mystery thriller set in the Scottish Islands. This book was the Waterstone’s Scotland book of the month for February – great success for a firs..."

Will try to get a copy Jim!


message 10: by Julie (new)

Julie (juliemdobson) The book sounds interesting (The Visitors). I'll also be on the hunt for a copy.


message 11: by James (new)

James | 16 comments Julie wrote: "The book sounds interesting (The Visitors). I'll also be on the hunt for a copy."

I saw it in paperback form this week in our local shop.


message 12: by James (new)

James | 16 comments #5 Consider the Liliesby Iain Crichton Smith

This is one of the 50 Favourite Scottish books of the last 50 years, as listed by the Scottish Book Trust. I’ve read a number of these now – this one just managed to scrape in as it was first published in 1968.

The main character is, unusually, a 70-year old woman being evicted from her home as part of the Highland Clearances in 1814. Some of my own ancestors would be affected by the Clearances on the Isle of Coll and in Knapdale.

It’s quite a short book, a subtle story with underlying themes about the relationships between the common people, the ruling class and the church.


message 13: by James (new)

James | 16 comments #6 Brat Farrar by Josephine Tey

I managed to get back to Josephine Tey. Good old-fashioned mystery, pretty entertaining. Seemed quite an original plotline – reminded me of a good old film plot.


message 14: by James (new)

James | 16 comments #7 The Girl on the Stairs by Louise Welsh

Psychological thriller with a Scottish 'heroine' (and author) - set in Berlin. Though it was indeed a page turner, I felt the basis on the story depended so much on the pregnant protagonist jumping to conclusions and unbelievably taking all sorts of risks as a stranger in the unfamiliar and spooky surroundings of a strange city.

I don't think this will be the author's best.


message 15: by Peggy (new)

Peggy (peggyherself) | 162 comments Mod
Jim wrote: "#7 The Girl on the Stairs by Louise Welsh

Psychological thriller with a Scottish 'heroine' (and author) - set in Berlin. Though it was indeed a page turner, I felt t..."


Another blogging friend gave this a 4.5 stars yet you and another gave it only 2. Hmm. I think I will have to read it now and see!


message 16: by James (new)

James | 16 comments Peggy wrote: "Another blogging friend gave this a 4.5 stars"

I see there is quite a split in the scoring in Goodreads reviews as well. So I'd be very interested in your view - you've got the casting vote, Peggy.


message 17: by Peggy (new)

Peggy (peggyherself) | 162 comments Mod
Jim wrote: "Peggy wrote: "Another blogging friend gave this a 4.5 stars"

I see there is quite a split in the scoring in Goodreads reviews as well. So I'd be very interested in your view - you've got the cast..."


Oh no! such responsibility, Jim!


message 18: by James (new)

James | 16 comments #8 The Living Mountainby Nan Shepherd
Written in the 1940's (though not published till the 70's), this is a book of devotion to the Cairngorm Mountain range and at the time quite unusual as it's written by a woman mountaineer. Only 100 pages long and split into chapters devoted to some aspect of the mountains, almost like a travel guide might be, it's a personal account. For me there was too much 'descrption' and not enough 'narrative' - in fact in only came to life for me when Nan Shepherd wrote about those particular encounters. Like when standing in water in a corrie loch, she suddenly realises she's on a narrow ledge next to an immense drop under water. It gets absolutely great reviews, but I found it hard to get involved in it - says more about me than the book.


message 19: by James (new)

James | 16 comments #9 Natural Causesby Natural Causes
Not my usual reading diet, but a good 'page turner', if a bit gory and weird. Actually, with the events in Paris, I felt as if it trivialised death and suffering in seeking to use them to provide an entertainment.


message 20: by Peggy (new)

Peggy (peggyherself) | 162 comments Mod
Jim wrote: "#9 Natural Causesby Natural Causes
Not my usual reading diet, but a good 'page turner', if a bit gory and weird. Actually, with the events in Paris, I felt as if it ..."


Had never thought about it that way, Jim. But your right. I guess it could be said crime novels do that!


back to top