o/t: leisure reading in July

For some reason I read far less than usual this month. Perhaps it was that I got really quite bored by two of the longer books I read ‑‑ both far too long, in fact ‑‑ so that, far from stealing moments to sneak in an extra chapter or two while I should have been doing something else, I was seizing on displacement activities. I dunno.

Luckily the other books were in general pretty ace. And I’m by now well stuck into a Steve Gallagher novel that I’m thoroughly enjoying.

Anyway, here’s the pitifully short list. The links are as ever to my often scrappy Goodreads notes.

It’s something of a judgement of Goodreads that, as I’ve just noticed, the overall star rating for Susan Hill book — which I found deeply flawed and which, whatever my views, is at best no more than a series entry — is almost identical to that for the Graham Greene classic.

9 thoughts on “o/t: leisure reading in July

  1. Thank you for the recommendation, some weeks ago, re: J.B. Priestly and “Benighted”. LOVED IT! His writing lively, witty and clever. I read the book in practically one sitting. Can’t believe it’s taken me so long to read Priestly, but I’m so glad I did.

    Thanks again! 🙂

    • Phew! I’m so relieved you enjoyed it, Ruth, though not surprised. I read a lot of his novels, plays and essays ‘way back when, and I was hardly ever — if ever — disappointed. As I say, it’s a shame he’s fallen out of fashion.

  2. I just saw your “scrappy” notes on Eva. Wish I could write my thoughts on a book as well as you. I am a big fan of Peter Dickinson but have only read his mystery fiction so far (and not all of that). King and Joker is one of my favorite books of all time. Glad you pointed me towards Eva, definitely sounds like one I want to read.

    Interesting note on the ratings on Goodreads. I do like to read comments on Goodreads at times (especially yours), but I ignore the ratings.

    • Golly — thanks for the kind words, Tracy.

      I agree with you that King and Joker is a tremendous piece of work; it’s just that for some reason it didn’t pull me into its world. Purely subjective, of course, and maybe if I reread it I’d react differently.

      I think the problem with aggregated star systems is that they’re incapable of discriminating the various reasons people award stars. There’s nothing wrong with giving a great thriller five stars; but there’s no way the aggregation can tell the difference between those five stars and the five stars you might give to Great Expectations or The Go-Between. So as a measure of quality the aggregated star rating is really pretty useless — although at least it can (or might be able to) indicate what’s likely to be good as a thriller, or as a mystery, or as a romance, etc.

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