Best Picks 2015

As an eclectic reader I read whatever takes my fancy. The following are my personal top 10 picks of 2015: 1. Wilder, Laura Ingalls (2014) Pioneer Girl: The annotated autobiography. South Dakota Historical Society Press. Pioneer Girl was the foundation for Wilder’s fictional world. This volume inclusive of primary sources provides new insights into Wilder’s life and times. Remarkable.  March Picks 2015. 2. Tyler, Anne… Continue reading Best Picks 2015

November Picks

Xinran (2015) Buy me the Sky: The remarkable truth of China's one-child generation. Rider. The first generation of Chinese children raised under China's one-child policy has reached adulthood. In her interviews with young people Xinran found a generation adrift. Her observations paint a poignant portrait of one-and-onlies adjusting to independence and loneliness, cultural and political shift, western influence, and the dynamics of… Continue reading November Picks

September-October Picks

De Goldi, Kate (2015) From the Cutting Room of Barney Kettle. Longacre. 12-year-old Barney Kettle was a 'megalomaniac' when it came to filmmaking. Global fame was his ultimate goal. He had already made four 15-minute films, with his sister Ren, when one summer holidays he began a documentary of life in High Street, the street where he lived.  The story is… Continue reading September-October Picks

August Picks

Barrows, Annie (2015) The Truth According to Us. Doubleday.  Macedonia's sesquincentennial is to be celebrated with the publication of the town's history.  In a hot summer in 1938 disinherited debutant, Miss Layla Beck, is given the task of recording the seemingly unremarkable story of the West Virginian town.  Then Layla mets the eccentric and seductive Romeyns whose lives are bound up… Continue reading August Picks

July Picks

Fuller, Alexandra (2015) Leaving Before the Rains Come. Penguin.  In this latest instalment of Alexandra Fuller's memoir she looks back to her African youth to understand the disintegration of her marriage. Alexandra recalls her courtship in Zambia as she struggles to come to terms with her life in Wyoming, and the pragmatism of her husband. She hankers for the fatalistic and… Continue reading July Picks

April Picks

Whitehouse, David (2015) Mobile Library. Picador.  Twelve-year-old Bobby Nusku ekes out a brutal existence with his father, as he archives the life of his long-gone mother. When he befriends Rosa and her mother Val, he finds solace. They escape town in a redundant mobile library and begin an adventure equal to the books that surround them.  This dark and original tragicomic road trip is a touching… Continue reading April Picks

March Picks

Wilder, Laura Ingalls (2014) Pioneer Girl: The annotated autobiography, edited by Pamela Smith Hill. South Dakota Historical Society Press. Laura Ingalls Wilder's never before published autobiography reveals true stories behind her pioneering life.  Pioneer Girl served as the historical foundation for Wilder's fictional world. Out of the period, places and people in the manuscript sprang the characters and settings… Continue reading March Picks

February Picks

Norton, Graham (2014) The life and loves of a He Devil. Hodder & Stoughton. Graham Norton's memoir is inspired by love, premised by "it is really the things you love that inspire and drive you". Although his approach is largely eclectic he shares his love of his career, dogs, the divas he has met, booze and boys, and his homeland… Continue reading February Picks