Good evening, fellow Bookworms!
You’ve heard of Howard’s End Is On The Landing, by Susan Hill, which, appropriately enough is on the landing here at home, but tonight’s book blog is named in honour of this evening’s search for a football autobiography and the realisation that it was not where I thought I’d put it! Don’t even ask me how many books I own! Hundreds of them, at the very least! They are everywhere! I have more books than I have storage space, and enough to last me several lifetimes! Even if I were a cat and had nine lives, I’d probably have more books than I could read in all nine of those!
Anyway, with constant talk of the Swedish international footballer being linked with a free transfer to the club I love, I thought I would have I Am Zlatan Ibrahimovic a bit closer to hand, and I headed out to our garage to look in the book chest. I found plenty of books of interest in there, but no Zlatan! Oh Zlatan, where art thou?! I brought in a couple of short novels by Andrey Kurkov – Death And The Penguin, and Penguin Lost, in exchange for One Day, by David Nicholls, which I have read some years ago, and I found a few interesting items of non-fiction, including Stasiland by Anna Funder, Nothing To Envy by Barbara Demick, and The Bookseller of Kabul by Asne Seierstad, but no sign of Mr Ibrahimovic!
Actually, when I was reading Nick Hornby’s book, which I finished the other night, he mentioned both Stasiland and Nothing To Envy, which reminded me that I had those books. I knew I certainly had Stasiland, and thought I also had the one about North Korea, and indeed I have! As I said, I’ve finished Stuff I’ve Been Reading, and I made further inroads with The Guest Cat this afternoon. I’m not too far from the end of that one now. It’s a nice book, as I’ve said, quite sweet, but it doesn’t really pull me back in the way some other books do. Perhaps because it’s Japanese and too polite to make demands of me! It never seems to say to me, “Oi! Joanne! When are you gonna get on with me again?!”
Some books do that to me, and others don’t. A Little Life beckons me over every few days at least for another lengthy session. The Guest Cat just waits around patiently for me to get it out of my handbag and have another read, whenever that might be! On the other hand, The Guest Cat possibly knows it has the advantage of being a slim book which has been in my handbag for months, it knows how portable it is, therefore it knows I can easily read it on the go somewhere. A Little Life is a big chunky wodge of a book and, even though I also have it on my Kindle, I’d have to find where I was up to between the two editions I own (paperback and ebook) and update each. So that is a different matter entirely, which means when I am home and reading A Little Life, I read it in bigger chunks at a time to compensate for not really reading it on the move, apart from when I was going to Wembley for the FA Cup Final.
Before we return to the whereabouts of Mr Ibrahimovic, or at least the whereabouts of the Swedish footballer’s book within our house, I’d just like to let off steam about the fact that some people are still more bothered about authors than what they’re actually writing! By that, I mean, some people are still rather too bothered about whether a book is written by a man or a woman, whether they’re black, white, or whatever, whether they’re gay or straight, what nationality they are, what faith… Seriously, who bloody cares as long as they write well and you enjoy what they have to say in their books?! It’s 2016, for crying out loud, not the bloody Victorian times! Why should it still be a big deal about the gender of an author? I honestly couldn’t give two shiny shites!
I give a shit about the plot if it’s fiction, or the subject matter if it’s non-fiction, and whether a book is readable or hard-going. Are they writing about something which floats my boat, such as music, books or football? (Or volcanoes – I have had an interest in those since I was about 8.) Can I get through the book fairly quickly, or is the writing style such that I feel like I’m wading through treacle? Have they researched their subject well, or are there glaring inaccuracies? Has it been proof-read or are there any spelling errors or grammatical errors which the publishing house should have corrected before going to print? Is it an interesting read, or a bit chalk-dry and a cure for insomnia? THESE are the concerns I have when it comes to books!
Does the book make me laugh? Humour is a big plus as far as I’m concerned, and I’ve found it just as much in non-fiction as I’ve found it in fiction! Some of the funniest books I’ve ever read have been factual! Fever Pitch, by Nick Hornby, springs to mind! I laughed my head off reading that! Not literally, obviously, as I still have a head, lol, but you know what I mean! I totally recommend Fever Pitch, and you don’t even have to be a Gooner to like it. I’m not a Gooner, and I loved it! If you’re a match-going football fan, you’ll find things to relate to! I think it may even have been a World Book Night book a few years ago! Just looked up previous World Book Night books, and it wasn’t. Perhaps I was getting mixed up with The Damned United, by David Peace, which WAS a WBN book in 2012, the same year I gave out copies of The Book Thief, by Markus Zusak, as a Book Giver on my 39th birthday! Oh well, Fever Pitch SHOULD be a World Book Night book!
I’ve not read The Damned United, although I own a copy somewhere, and I have seen the film, starring Martin Sheen as Brian Clough. It’s about Cloughie’s very short time as manager of Leeds United way back in the early to mid 1970s, he was in charge for 44 days if I’m not mistaken, and Leeds did utterly shite while he was in charge, so for those of us who detest LUFC, it is actually very funny! Cloughie’s time in charge of Leeds makes even Moyesy’s time at Old Trafford look good! And that’s saying something, ’cause most of 2013-14 was bloody awful!
So, I was going to return to the whereabouts of Zlatan, or at least the whereabouts of his autobiography, wasn’t I? When I was in the garage, looking in the book chest and not finding what I was looking for, as per the U2 song, lol, I was thinking it must be in my room somewhere. And it was. Thankfully, the first place I checked was in part of my wardrobe unit, and it was on the shelf in there, so I have got it out, ready to have to hand should Mr Ibrahimovic fancy a couple of seasons at Old Trafford before he hangs up his boots or does the MLS thing like a load of old footballers seem to do these days when they get a bit too long in the tooth for the Premier League and the other major European leagues of any importance! (Bundesliga, La Liga, Serie A, etc…)
Of course, this actually depends on Zlatan’s choice, which he has not yet made. I’d quite like to see him at United, even if he is getting on a wee bit, but we’ll have to see. In the meantime, I am getting on with The Rules of the Game, by Pierluigi Collina, the former referee, the guy who reffed our European Cup Final vs Bayern Munich when we won the Treble in 1999. I was going to mention something, but, no, I won’t give away any spoilers, but let’s just say there’s quite an interesting revelation from him about his preparation for that night in the Nou Camp… Now, you’re all going to have to order copies and read it for yourselves, aren’t you?!
Time I got off my computer and got some reading done! Until I blog again, take care and Happy Reading!
Joanne x x x
Books mentioned in this blog entry:
- Howard’s End Is On the Landing – Susan Hill
- I Am Zlatan Ibrahimovic – Zlatan Ibrahimovic
- Death And the Penguin – Andrey Kurkov
- Penguin Lost – Andrey Kurkov
- One Day – David Nicholls
- Stasiland – Anna Funder
- Nothing To Envy – Barbara Demick
- The Bookseller of Kabul – Asne Seierstad
- Stuff I’ve Been Reading – Nick Hornby
- The Guest Cat – Takashi Hiraide
- A Little Life – Hanya Yanagihara
- Fever Pitch – Nick Hornby
- The Damned United – David Peace
- The Rules of the Game – Pierluigi Collina