As you might imagine, I get a slew of books every year. Each Monday, I come into the office (I’m there every Monday and Tuesday) there are masses of envelopes and boxes filled with books for me to go through. Fabulous, right? Well, of course, it is! But I can only consider so many for the pages of Chatelaine. Our mandate is to cover books that are released concurrent with each issue of the magazine, and books that are already past the on-sale date, so to speak, get shunted to the side. Many I keep for future reference, so my apartment is, needless to say, starting to look like something out of an episode of Hoarders. Hmm. You can never have too many books, though, can you?
In any case, I want to read all those books at some point, but there are a few in particular that stand out for me as the ones I’ll reach for first (when I actually have a few spare hours *laughs madly*).
And so, here is my list of my top unread books of 2012:
Mrs. Robinson’s Disgrace, Kate Summerscale, $27.50. This non-fiction dissection of how a woman is taken apart in court in full view of her peers and Victorian society for having an alleged affair won’t be an easy read, I imagine, but then, we should sometimes be made uncomfortable by what we read, shouldn’t we?
Malarky, Anakana Schofield, $19.95. This book got a lot of attention on my Twitter feed this year from many women I admire greatly. It’s about Our Woman, an Irish housewife surrounded by people she can’t understand, doing unmentionable things to each other. What is a woman to do? Well, just maybe try some unmentionable things herself.
Broken Harbour, Tana French, $24.99. I’ve been reading mysteries since before I can remember as my mother had a library filled with them. This year, Deryn Collier (Confined Space) and I had a Twitter exchange about this book, and she mentioned it had a line in it that was the “perfect sentence.” I’ve been anticipating reading it ever since.
Bobcat and Other Stories, Rebecca Lee, $22. I heard Lee read an excerpt from this at Toronto’s International Festival of Authors this fall and thought she was brilliant. Our features editor, Antonia Whyatt, is currently reading this one and loving it!
Siege 13, Tamas Dobozy, $22.95. I have to admit, I no longer actually have this book, which is 13 linked stories about the siege of Budapest. I read a few paragraphs of it when it came across my desk and it sat, there, on my desk tantalizing me (it has a beautiful cover!), for over a week, before I put it in our giveaway pile (see note above about my apartment looking like an episode of Hoarders). Then the critical acclaim starting rolling in (along with the prize for the Rogers Writers’ Trust for Fiction), and I thought, Damn, I knew that book was good! So, whoever took it, if you’re done with it and don’t want to hold onto it, I’ll be happy to take it back off your hands!!
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