So, we’re coming to the end of March, and I’ve managed to keep to my schedule of books to read in 2015 - I’m actually a little ahead. So far this year I’ve read “American Gods” by Neil Gaiman, “Raising Steam” by Terry Pratchett, “The Future History of the Arctic” by Charles Emmerson, and Paul Theroux’s “The Great Railway Bazaar”.
I’ll start with my most recent read - American Gods. I had previously never read any Neil Gaiman so I really didn’t know what to expect. The book started well, then seemed to go a bit mental, but managed to hold my attention really well as I tried to understand what was happening. I really enjoyed it once I let story unfold. I’ll definitely try and read more of his work when I can.
Before that, I read the late great Sir Terry Pratchett’s Raising Steam. I loved it because I love all that is Discworld. It was great to see some of my favourite characters again as the story unfolded nicely, and I loved every minute of it. I can see why some people with less of a biased eye than mine might not love it as much, because its kind of more of the same Moist von Lipwig adventuring as it follows similar paths as Making Money and Going Postal. I would recommend it to any Discworld fan though.
At the end of January I finished Charles Emmerson’s very interesting book “The Future History of the Arctic”. This book takes you on a trip through the history of the Arctic, then to the present day layout of the land and the various nations that keep it under close scrutiny, some for strategic and some for energy purposes. There’s some dire warnings about its future but also some glimpses of hope, and Charles Emmerson does his best to navigate us through the complex political, economic, and geographical issues at the heart of the Arctic. A very interesting read.
Just before that I read Paul Theroux’s debut travel writing - The Great Railway Bazaar. I absolutely loved this book. I felt like I was along for the ride - he paints such graphic depictions of the trains and situations he found himself in. I love that he left so much of himself in the writing - He didn’t gloss over the really boring, or the times were he felt drained by the travelling. You really do get to travel with him across the world. I flew through this book, hence why I’m a couple of books ahead of my plan. As soon as I can, I will be reading more of his travel writing.
And what am I reading now? “On The Map” by Simon Garfield. I love maps, and this seemed like an easy read to take me through to April and John Feinstein’s first book which I’m really looking forward to. I’m enjoying “On The Map” though, I think I might learn a thing or six from it.