the year in books :: December


I can’t quite believe it, but this year in books is drawing to a close. Midwinter is just weeks away, and as the daylight hours dwindle, it’s so tempting to curl up beneath a blanket, or to retire to bed early, with a book. During November, I’ve been reading the Complete Stories of Flannery O’Connor. This collection is bookended by two very different versions of the same haunting story, and the whole book is completely infused with the atmosphere and inflections of the American deep South.

For my December book choice, I’ve gone with something gentle, lyrical and festive. Following my visit to Laugharne, Dylan Thomas’ work was the obvious choice, and A Child’s Christmas in Wales is a book that I can read to the boys, and perhaps even  incorporate into our family Christmas tradition. Cerys Matthews has set this book, along with some parts of Under Milk Wood, to music. You can read about it here, and listen to a beautiful extract. Something rather lovely for the Christmas list!

Thank you to everyone who commented on my last post- there was an overwhelmingly positive response to the idea of continuing the project next year. I’m so glad that we’ll be travelling forward on this reading journey together, and I’ll be back with 2014’s final Year in Books post towards the end of this month: to celebrate this year’s reading achievements, and to introduce the second year. A huge, heartfelt thank you to everyone who has taken part so far; it’s been wonderful to have you with me on this bibliophilic adventure.

So, for the final time in 2014, let’s get on with the linkup..

The aim has been to read (at least) a book a month during 2014. At the start of the month, we blog the book that we are planning to read in the month ahead. If we feel inspired to, we also write a little about the previous month’s book. Not a review, as such, just some thoughts: a recommendation (or otherwise!) for others who might be thinking of reading it. It’s not a traditional book club, so we don’t have to all read the same book. This is just about trying to ensure that we make space for reading in our busy lives, and hopefully a way to discover more lovely books (and lovely bibliophiles).

If you would prefer to share your book choices over on Instagram, that would also be great, please use the hashtag #theyearinbooks so that we can find your posts. The same hashtag is also active on Twitter. There is a Year in Books Pinterest board, so do let me know in the comments if you would like me to add you as a pinner. If I should have added you, and haven’t, do nudge me. Pinterest is a little problematic on the issue and it sometimes takes a couple of attempts. There’s also a Goodreads group for this project, and you are welcome to join, whether or not you have a blog of your own.

It doesn’t matter whether or not you have linked up before- everyone is welcome and it’s never too late to get involved. I would be grateful if you could link back to here in your post. Do add your link below – click on the blue button at the bottom of the post.

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  • What a charming cover the Dylan Thomas book has. I love the idea of a book like that for the whole family.
    And I so pleased to hear that A Year in Books will continue next year. I’ve so enjoyed the months this year after I found your link-up. My reading has picked up. It’s not back at pre-family levels (and I doubt it ever will be!) but I am so much more encouraged to pick up a book now than turn the tv on.

  • Fabulous to hear you’re going ahead with this next year Laura! I’ve just read God is an Astronaut, link above, and will now continue with The Narrow Road to the Deep North – an intense read from which I needed a small break. I’ve spent the past while featuring books as a series on my blog – 30 days of books for Christmas. So many good reads from the year!

  • I’ve only just discovered your book circle, and am very glad you’re continuing it in 2015. I do not tweet or pin or I’gram, but I have a blog. Will that do? If so, please add me to the circle? Thank you!

  • Have been following this and your blog for a little while now, and have decided to take the plunge and join you in your year in books in 2015. Is it possible to add me as a pinner on pinterest? my profile name is Morag Duller. Thanks.

  • I’ve just come across ‘A Year in Books’ and it’s such a lovely idea. I’ve had great fun looking through all the posts, and my Christmas wishlist has grown somewhat as a result! It’s great to hear it’s continuing in 2015, and I’d love to get involved. I’d be really grateful if you could add me as a pinner – my profile name is abidare. Thanks.

    • Hi Abi, Great to hear that you will be joining in next year. I’ve emailed you an invite to the board via Pinterest. Let me know if you don’t get it. Laura