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    I finished Love After Love last week – it's very good indeed – and am now reading Oreo by Fran Ross. About halfway through and I'm at a loss as to why I hadn't heard of this book before this year. Well, I'm not; it's because it was written by a Black woman rather than a white man. It's brilliant.

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      Re-reading "Exterminate All The Brutes" despite having tons of books I've not read yet.

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        I'd run out of books to read, so decided to finally read "Naked Lunch" which I bought in a charity shop 3 years ago. Christ, it's monotonous, I started skipping large chunks of it as the umpteenth description of drug injection, buggery or murder began which was no different to the last. As a travelogue, it held some interest, but overall it was a drug-addict repeating the same tired story over and over again. Saying that, the pace of the writing must have been revolutionary and exciting at the time, I can see how it must have influenced Hubert Selby Jr and he must have been lucid enough to take Burroughs's style and shape it into stories with characters you actually care for.

        After the struggle of reading Burroughs, I decided I needed something easier and more satisfying, so I've bought "IT" by Stephen King. First time I've read a King since I was 15, when I went through a major phase reading his novels. I'm 100 pages in and he's as good a storyteller as I remember, enjoying it a lot.

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          Oreo is an absolutely outstanding book. If you like mythology, or post-modern stuff, or humour, or if you want to read more diversely, or if you just like reading, to be honest, you really really must read it. I'm so glad I stumbled across it.

          Next read is one I've had sitting on my Kindle since it was published, pretty much. Among my Facebook acquaintances (this dates the purchase to at least two and a half years ago, because I've not been on Facebook in that time) is a girl from my village who was in my year in primary and secondary schools, whose little brother has been best mates with my little brother since they were about three years old, and who now lives somewhere in north-east England. She put up a status update one day asking her friends to support a local writer she knew by buying a copy of his new book. Anyway over the last few months I've started following a few literary podcasts and crime writing accounts on Twitter and have seen lots of people raving about the latest installment in this series of books called Six Stories by Matt Wesolowski. Name rings a bell for some reason, I think. And sure enough, the first book in said series (which is itself called Six Stories) is the book I'd bought on a whim because my old friend had recommended it. I started it today and it's certainly got the gripping sense of mystery and tension down. Interesting structure, too.

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            I find it hard to warm to e-books, largely because it's hard to transfer the appearance/pagination of a physical book to the digital format, but one gem I discovered on BorrowBox was Stories of the Sahara by a Taiwanese author called Sanmao - she lived with her Spanish army husband in the then Spanish Sahara in the years immediately before that colonial regime collapsed, with the emphasis on the desert and the lifestyle of the Sahrawis, but she doesn't over-romanticise them, detailing the poverty of the region, and the conflict between tradition and modernity, particularly for women.

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              Six Stories was a very enjoyable page turner (and, if you've got an overactive imagination like me, terrifying). I shall be checking out others in the series.

              I'm now reading Because Internet by Gretchen McCulloch, which is about how the internet is shaping and changing the way we use language (fans of Tom Scott's YouTube channel might recognise the author's name because he's namechecked her, and indeed this book, in some of his language videos).

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                I am reading Long Live the Post Horn! by Vigdis Hjorth, which was recommended to me by someone on instagram. It starts with a discovery of an old diary and is really a study of the mundane and trivial. I'm finding it tough going to be honest.

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                  Originally posted by RobW View Post
                  I am reading Long Live the Post Horn! by Vigdis Hjorth, which was recommended to me by someone on instagram. It starts with a discovery of an old diary and is really a study of the mundane and trivial. I'm finding it tough going to be honest.
                  Finished it tonight. Not really my cup of tea, but that's likely my negative outlook. There were one or two moments of genuine interest but I found it rather drab and devoid of any light relief. Will start Ian Kershaw's Roller-Coaster tomorrow.

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                    I've started Chronic City by Jonathan Lethem which Ms Felicity couldn't finish

                    Fortress of Solitude is one of my favourite books of recent years and I buy copies of it and force others to read it. I also liked his essays and short stuff but there are Tom Wolfe-lite aspects to this so far, I'll have to see where it goes

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                      I finished Because Internet a couple of nights ago and yesterday started The New Wilderness by Diane Cook, which was on the shortlist for last year's Booker. It's very post apocalyptic so far, and I'm not sure where it's going yet.

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