Friday, 26 June 2015

Book Beginnings on Fridays

I'm trying to work out what I'd like to read next.

I'm 3/4's of the way through the Gone With the Wind readalong, but I'm being good at stopping at the end of each reading section, so that any comments I make do not contain spoilers.

So I'm looking for something lighter, slimmer and quicker to read in between.

Perhaps you can help me decide which book I should take to bed tonight!

Brother of the More Famous Jack by Barbara Trapido -

Since I have no other, I use as preface Jacob's preface which I read, sneakily, fifteen years ago, when it lay on the Goldmans' breakfast table, amid the cornflakes;
'I cannot in good conscience give the statutory thanks to my wife,' it says, 'for helpful comments on the manuscript, patient reading of drafts or corrections to proofs, because Jane did none of these things. She seldom reads and when she does it is never a thing of mine. Going by the lavish thanks to wives which I find in the prefaces to other men's books, I deem myself uniquely injudicious in having married a woman who refuses to double as a high-grade editorial assistant. Since custom requires me to thank her for something, I thank her instead for the agreeable fact of her continuing presence which in twenty years I have never presumed to expect.'

Promising? A bit of humour, a bit of snap and bite. It could be the perfect antidote to a Civil War chunkster.

My other choice is The Guest Cat by Takashi Hiraide -

At first it looked like low-lying ribbons of clouds just floating there, but then the clouds would be blown a little bit to the right and next to the left.
The small window in the corner of our kitchen bordered on a tall wooden fence, so close a person could barely pass by. From inside the house, its frosted glass looked like a dim movie screen.

This one sounds a little more introspective and thoughtful. It also has one of the best covers I've seen this year. Modern Japanese literature is about as far as possible from Civil War US as I can get!

Which way should I go?

Linking up with Book Beginnings on Fridays over at Rose City Reader.


  1. Hi - I think I like The Guest Cat by Takashi Hiraide better. But, that's just me. :)
    @dino0726 from 
    FictionZeal - Impartial, Straighforward Fiction Book Reviews

  2. I like the sound of the first one, and the cover. It's the one I'd pick up first.

  3. Ouch! The book beginning for brother of the more famous Jack is amazing! It's a bit catty, I love it! The author clearly isn't afraid and it comes through in the writing, I think it's definitely a book I'd like to read :D Thank you for visiting my blog!
    Happy reading,
    Amy x

  4. Both interesting picks! While I'm not a cat person, I'm intrigued by Japanese-authored books in general!


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