Some Advance Reader Copies (ARCs) included. They are marked with an *. You can read my full disclosure policy here.
Trips to Cork and Dublin this month meant lots of reading time, thanks to long bus journeys. It was an excellent reading month because two of my favourite books of the year are among this bunch.
A Line Made by Walking by Sara Baume
This book, oh this book. Go read it. Sara Baume has done it again. A Line Made by Walking is a haunting story about one woman’s love of art and her experience of mental illness. It’s one of the best books I’ve read this year, maybe ever.
I’ll have a standalone review, as soon as I can put my love for it in words that aren’t “this book, oh this book.” Go read it. Seriously, read it now.
Blood Sisters by Jane Corry*
Three girls, two of whom are half-sisters, one event and lots of half-truths; what really happened on the way to school that day? The day one of them died.
Two perspectives; Alison and Kitty, two timelines; now and then, one question; what makes people do the things they do?
When Alison takes a job as an art teacher in an open prison, her past comes back to haunt her. The past she has never really escaped. Neither has Kitty, but for very different reasons. She has no memory of the accident, which left her disabled and unable to speak.
Elements of Blood Sisters* are brilliantly done. Others left me wondering what the hell was going on. Overall, it strayed too much into the realm of the ridiculous for my liking.
Conversations with Friends by Sally Rooney
Frances and her best friend Bobbi regularly perform spoken-word poetry together at literary events around Dublin. When they attract the attention of Melissa, a photographer and journalist, Bobbi is drawn to Melissa and Frances finds herself falling for Nick, Melissa’s husband.
Conversation with Friends is an intimate look at relationships, life and figuring out who you are. You can expect this one to also feature on my Best Books of 2017 list. I’ll be thinking about it for a long time to come and will no-doubt revisit it numerous times.
The Ethical Slut by Janet W. Hardy and Dossie Eaton
The Ethical Slut is a fascinating and thought-provoking look at polyamory, open relationships and ethical non-monogamy in its many forms. There is a heavy self-help element to this book, but I feel there is much insight into relationships, emotions and the importance of communication for monogamous and non-monogamous people alike.
How Much the Heart Can Hold: Seven Stories on Love*
The premise of this collection drew me in immediately. Each author was of given a choice of a different type of love along with a brief and vague description of what each one meant. The result is a gorgeous exploration of love in its many guises.
Stand out stories – Codas by Carys Bray, It Was Summer by Phoebe Roy and White Wine by Nikesh Shukla.