Books and Footy – FA Cup Special!

Book spree at Waterstone's 7th April 2016

Good evening, fellow Bookworms!

Welcome to another helping of book blog, interspersed with considerable waffle about football, lol! But, what else can you expect, given that I was at the FA Cup Final yesterday?! Indeed, the long coach journey down to Wembley was the perfect opportunity to get some epic reading done, and so I had a pretty good day, not just because my lads won the FA Cup, but also because I felt I’d accomplished a fair amount of reading on the way down. I could easily have read on the way home, too, but I felt more like eating than reading, and I was busy celebrating our win, in which we came from a goal down, and overcame Chris “Mike” Smalling getting himself needlessly sent off for a second bookable offence, the numpty, to win 2-1 in extra time and win the FA Cup for the 12th time in our history, putting us level with Arsenal both in terms of FA Cup victories and appearances in the final – 19 appearances, 12 wins for both ourselves and the Gunners.

Funnily enough, one of the books I took down with me, although I didn’t get around to reading it, was Stuff I’ve Been Reading, by Nick Hornby, a rather well-known Gooner author! I have to say I absolutely LOVE Fever Pitch, it had me laughing my head off back in 1994 when I read it, which got me some pretty odd looks at the time as we were going round Sunderland Uni for my sister who was doing her A Levels and looking at universities at the time – I was in my final year of my degree, but did not have any lectures that day, so I was in Sunderland with my parents and sister, rather than Bolton!

Besides Fever Pitch, I have also read The Complete Polysyllabic Spree, which is a collection of columns Nick Hornby wrote for a monthly publication from 2003 to 2006, book reviews into which he tried to bring other interests of his, particularly football, and so there were mentions of Arsene Wenger, the Gunners and anything else he thought he could get away with! In a way, I guess I have much in common with Hornby, except that I support a different team, and I am not writing this blog for anything other than my own pleasure, so what I write on here is what the hell I like, and if I want to waffle on significantly about Manchester United, I bloody well will do!

Hornby strikes me as a very random reader. In the blurb on the back of Stuff I’ve Been Reading, it says that we will find every kind of book that just happens to have taken the author’s fancy! Fiction and non-fiction alike, if it appeals to Hornby, he’ll give it a go, and that’s very much how I am with books.

Anyway, I’d already finished reading How Steeple Sinderby Wanderers Won the FA Cup, so that one wasn’t coming to Wembley with me, as it was one of my recently-finished books, along with Mind Your Head, by Juno Dawson, and The Story of Music, by Howard Goodall.

One problem which presented itself to me was that I am currently reading A Little Life, by Hanya Yanagihara, and, as documented, that is hardly a little book! It’s a big, chunky wodge of a book, with 720 pages. Thus I decided I would also get the book in e-book format on my Kindle, so that I could find where I was up to in my paperback, and continue from there while on the move, and then adjust my bookmark in the paperback accordingly when I got home. On the coach, on the way down to Wembley, I got a fair bit read, so I am now 35% of the way through the novel, just over a third of it read. I am finding it very readable, certainly thus far.

I then decided to focus on The Reader On The 6.27, by Jean-Paul Didierlaurent. I figured that I was on a coach, so I may as well read about a bloke on a train! A VERY readable, enjoyable book! I could definitely recommend it, it is quite quick to read, quite funny, too, and I managed to finish it off on my journey down to Wembley.

I wanted a suitable photo for this blog, and chose the top one. To be fair, I have read 3 out of 4 on the bottom row, and I am over a third of the way through A Little Life, as previously mentioned, so there’s just those three on the top row which I’ve yet to read. I hope to get around to those. I think Stuff I’ve Been Reading is going to be my current non-fiction, though, especially as I know Hornby will probably try to drag football into it at various points, just as I do on here!

What about more fiction, though, to replace The Reader On The 6.27? I don’t want anything mega-chunky, as I already have A Little Life on the go for those purposes, lol. Perhaps Me Before You, by Jojo Moyes? Or, given that it’s the 40th anniversary of one of the biggest heatwaves the UK has ever known, Summer of ’76, by Isabel Ashdown, or Instructions For a Heatwave, by Maggie O’Farrell? Perhaps I should get on with The Trouble With Goats and Sheep, by Joanna Cannon? That one’s also set in the long, hot summer of 1976! Only thing is, that one’s a hardback. Don’t really want to be lugging anything big around. Something which would be a good Handbag Book would be ideal.

My current YA read is The Girl of Ink & Stars, by Kiran Millwood Hargrave, as that’s my latest book club book, so that’s sorted out, and there’s still one or two other ongoing concerns, such as The Guest Cat, by Takashi Hiraide. I was thinking of starting on one of the series I own, perhaps one of the trilogies, but maybe I should leave those until I’ve finished A Little Life. It’s not just that I’m talking at least 2 or 3 books in any of these series, most of the ones I have in mind are trilogies, but each book in that series is fairly substantial. So, forget that… I’ve got Mend The Living, by Maylis de Kerangal, which I discovered recently at Chapter One in town. I think we’ll settle for that at the moment along with all the other ongoing books!

Before I finish, I must mention that I have got yet another book about books, lol! Another of the sort of book you just dip in and out of to find recommendations for other books to suit your mood. The book is Book Lust, by Nancy Pearl. I had ordered it from Waterstone’s and got a text on Friday to say that my order had arrived. As I was going to town that afternoon, anyway, I went to the Deansgate store to collect it. I have just discovered that there are other sequels by Nancy Pearl. I shall have to investigate…

Oh, and I have a ticket for another author event at Waterstone’s Deansgate. Jessie Burton, author of The Miniaturist, is coming in July!

In the meantime, that’s about it from me for now. I’m off to sort out the Handbag, lol! Thus, until next time I blog, take care and Happy Reading!

Joanne x x x

Books mentioned in this blog entry:

  • Stuff I’ve Been Reading – Nick Hornby
  • Fever Pitch – Nick Hornby
  • The Complete Polysyllabic Spree – Nick Hornby
  • How Steeple Sinderby Wanderers Won the FA Cup – J. L. Carr
  • Mind Your Head – Juno Dawson
  • The Story of Music – Howard Goodall
  • A Little Life – Hanya Yangihara
  • The Reader On the 6.27 – Jean-Paul Didierlaurent
  • Me Before You – Jojo Moyes
  • Summer of ’76 – Isabel Ashdown
  • Instructions For a Heatwave – Maggie O’Farrell
  • The Trouble With Goats and Sheep – Joanna Cannon
  • The Girl of Ink & Stars – Kiran Millwood Hargrave
  • The Guest Cat – Takashi Hiraide
  • Mend The Living – Maylis de Kerangal
  • Book Lust – Nancy Pearl
  • The Miniaturist – Jessie Burton
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Filed under Books, Books About Books, British Weather, E-Books & Audiobooks, Football, Travel, YA Books

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