I am completely devoid of inspiration at the moment, so let’s nick some questions from the Books That Made Me in The Guardian. 

The book I am currently reading:

  • Ring Shout by P. Djèlí Clark
  • The Seventh Manson by Maryse Meijer – both of these books require quite a lot of concentration, so I’m tackling them a little bit at a time.
  • The Valancourt Book of World Horror Stories – I’m about halfway though this stinking collection. Really terrifying.
  • White Fragility by Robin DiAngelo – For my work book club. It’s eye-opening.

The book that changed my life:

I had a couple of periods in my late teens/early twenties where I didn’t really read. But at uni I picked up Lullaby by Chuck Palahniuk, which reminded me how exciting books can be. And similarly, when on a solo vacation at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, I bought and read Emma Donohue’s Room, which reminded me that a book can often be the best possible companion.

The book I think is most underrated:

I recently read Christina Henry’s Lost Boy, an origin story for Captain Hook, and it was just so good. Henry’s book, Alice, seems to be lauded as her best, but I thought it was a little formulaic. Lost Boy, however, is just fucking magic. 

I really enjoyed Djinn Patrol on the Purple Line, and it seemed like it was going to be a massive success. Deepa Anappara’s writing is incredibly engaging. 

The book that changed my mind:

Yes Please by Amy Poehler. There’s a particular section that made me realize I need to be a little kinder to myself. 

The last book that made me cry:

Things in Jars by Jess Kidd. I won’t spoil it, but there’s a really special relationship in that book. I wept. 

The last book that made me laugh:

The sheer audacity of a couple of stories from Back from the Dead: The Legacy of the Pan Book of Horror Stories have made me laugh in a “WTF?!” kind of way. Notably Medium Rare, and The Clinic.

The book I’m ashamed not to have read:

Jane Eyre, Wuthering Heights, Pride and Prejudice. I wouldn’t say I’m ashamed that I haven’t read them, but I’m probably doing the authors a disservice by not doing so. 

The book I give as a gift:

I only usually give books to children, and it’s always something by Roald Dahl. Revolting Rhymes is a particular favorite. 

My earliest reading memory:

Reading a comic of the UK kid’s TV show Rainbow

My comfort read:

The short stories of Daphne duMaurier, and The Woman in Black by Susan Hill. It will surprise no one to know I find comfort in horror.

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