Shelf Control #29 & This Week in Books 05/06/19

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Shelf Control is a weekly celebration of the unread books on our shelves created and hosted by Lisa @ Bookshelf Fantasies. Pick a book you own but haven’t read, write a post about it (suggestions: include what it’s about, why you want to read it, and when you got it), and link up! For more info on what Shelf Control is all about, check out Lisa’s introductory post, here.

592696The Night Watch
by Sarah Waters

This is the story of four Londoners – three women and a young man with a past, drawn with absolute truth and intimacy. Kay, who drove an ambulance during the war and lived life at full throttle, now dresses in mannish clothes and wanders the streets with a restless hunger, searching. Helen, clever, sweet, much-loved, harbours a painful secret. Viv, glamour girl, is stubbornly, even foolishly loyal, to her soldier lover. Duncan, an apparent innocent, has had his own demons to fight during the war. Their lives, and their secrets connect in sometimes startling ways. War leads to strange alliances…

It’s Pride Month – woohoo! – so what better time to talk about Sarah Waters? Waters is one of my favourite authors and I’ve read all of her novels but this one. I keep meaning to pick it up, but because it’s the last one I have left to read I kind of want to wait until she finally releases another book so I still have another Waters novel to read. Not only that, but I’m never really drawn to historical fiction set around the Second World War, especially if it’s set in London because so much historical fiction is set in London and I find it quite boring as a setting. One of these days I’ll get around to reading this one, though!

Are you a fan of books set during the Second World War? Are there any you’d recommend?

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This week I’m joining in with Lipsy @ Lipsyy Lost & Found to talk about the books I’ve been reading recently!

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Now

As it’s Round 3 of the Queer Lit Readathon this week, I decided it’s about time I picked up Rainbow Rowell’s Carry On. I stayed away from it for a long time because I’ve never read Fangirl and also because I wasn’t sure how I felt that Rowell, in my head, had essentially written Harry Potter fanfiction and was getting paid for it, which didn’t seem right to me. Then I kept seeing good reviews and J.K. Rowling kept saying shitty things, so I decided to check it out and I am loving it. It’s not fanfiction as I originally thought (with no evidence, so that’ll teach me to stop making assumptions!) but a very fun, very meta study of the traditional ‘chosen one’ story that actually includes queer people in the narrative.

Then

I can’t remember the last time I read a graphic novel, but I saw some good reviews of Sleepless, Vol.1 and decided to pick it up because I want to read more high fantasy graphic novels. I really enjoyed it! The art is lovely and it was great to see people of colour at the centre of a medieval-inspired fantasy story.

Next

I have reading to catch up on for the Booktube SFF Awards liveshow so I can vote and avoid spoilers (thankfully the liveshow has been pushed back to July, so I have more time!) and I want to read a lot more of the LGBT+ books on my shelves throughout Pride Month, but I’ve been in the mood to read more books set in Ireland since I read Daughter of the Forest. I was very kindly sent a review copy of Her Kind from Penguin Ireland, which is set in medieval Ireland and looks at witch trials. I can’t resist a witch trial.

What have you been reading recently?

7 thoughts on “Shelf Control #29 & This Week in Books 05/06/19

  1. Kathy @ Pages Below the Vaulted Sky says:

    I LOVE Sarah Waters’ writing! Still need to get to The Night Watch, though. And I have an…interesting relationship with Rainbow Rowell’s writing (Eleanor and Parker in particular), but I did like the way that Carry On addressed the Chosen One trope and the problematic nature of Dumbledore (or any Dumbledore-like mentor figures). And I just started on Max Gladstone’s Empress of Forever!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Lisa says:

    I can’t believe JKR said bad things about Carry On! I thought it was terrific, even though the details haven’t stuck with me, so I need to do a re-read before the sequel comes out. I need to read the Sarah Waters book too! I have this one and a couple of others still to read. Fingersmith is one of my all-time favorite books!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Jess @ Jessticulates says:

      She didn’t say bad things about Carry On (I should have phrased that better! 😅) but I was getting fed up with her claiming characters were queer on Twitter but never writing that queerness into her work, whereas Carry On announces it has queer characters in the text itself. I love Fingersmith! The Little Stranger is still my favourite of Waters’ novels.

      Like

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