the year in books: January, February & March 2018

The first months of the year have flown by and thanks to a broken laptop (never keep your cuppa near your laptop, folks!), writing deadlines and a couple of snow days, I’ve been unusually remiss with my The Year In Books blog posts. Still, less time on the laptop has meant more time with my head in a book (there’s a lesson there…) and I’ve read quite a number of books since the start of the year.

A recent fascination with the writing process has led to me reading several books by authors about how (and why) they write: Dani Shapiro’s Still Writing, Philip Pullman’s Daemon Voices – Essays on Storytelling and Dreams and Wishes- Essays on Writing for Children by Susan Cooper have each proved fascinating, but it was Dreams and Wishes that I devoured in a day (having sourced a copy of this out of print gem from the Vancouver Island library via a second hand book shop). I loved re-reading Cooper’s The Dark is Rising over Christmas with my eldest son, and her thoughts on both writing and childhood, as expressed in these essays, were illuminating.

I’ve also been reading a couple of novels: I sped through Matt Haig’s How to Stop Time, and I’m now halfway through Helen Dunmore’s wonderful Birdcage Walk, a birthday gift from my husband. Finally, I always have a poetry book or two on the pile beside my bed and I’m currently reading Hollie McNish’s Plum. It’s recently been the subject of controversy in the poetry world, and is certainly different to the poetry I usually read, but I love McNish’s fresh voice and often empassioned stance.

I hope to be back to bookish routine as usual next month, but in the meantime, please do join me for next Monday’s Twitter chat if you can.

The next Twitter chat for  #theyearinbooks chat will be at 9pm on Monday 12th March. It is always an absolute treat, so do come along and join us if Twitter’s your thing; we’re a very welcoming crowd, and you’re sure to come away with a to-read list as long as your arm, and some bookish new friends to boot. (I’m @circleofpines on Twitter, but follow @theyearinbooks for details of the chat.) 

You can find all the details about the Year in Books project on the YIB information page. Here’s a quick reminder of how it works: The aim of the project is to read (at least) a book a month during 2018. It’s not a conventional book club, so we don’t usually all read the same book. At the start of the month, I blog about the book that I am intending to read and write a few words (thoughts, comments, a review of sorts) about the previous month’s book. If you would like to do the same on your own blog, or over on Instagram, please do join me! Posts can be shared via #theyearinbooks on Twitter or Instagram, or can be pinned to the Year in Books Pinterest board (let me know in the blog comments if you would like to be added as a pinner- I’ll just need your email address to send you an invitation.) Do also feel free to share a link to your post in my blog post comments. I’d appreciate it if you could link back here from any blog posts.

You can read about why I started the project here, and find the most recent #theyearinbooks posts here. You don’t have to blog about your books- you can participate purely via social media and can share as many books as you like- it doesn’t have to be restricted to one a month. I am @circleofpines on Instagram and on Twitter : please do tag me so that I can see your posts. There’s a Goodreads group for this project, and all are very welcome to join. Finally, if you are on Pinterest, do follow  and peruse the Year in Books Pinterest Board for all manner of bookish inspiration. It doesn’t matter whether or not you have taken part before- everyone is welcome and it’s never too late to get involved. 


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