Here I’m going to share the five books that are at the top of my TBR list, and which I will hopefully be getting to in the next couple of weeks. As I am a mood reader, and one who changes her mind every four seconds, I decided doing these top fives regularly would be a better idea for me than a monthly TBR. Please feel free to comment if any of these are on your TBR, if you’ve read them and what your thoughts are, or if you have any recommendations for other books you think should be on my TBR. Happy reading!
1. The Good Immigrant edited by Nikesh Shukla
This one was in my recent haul post, and I’ve already started reading it and am learning a great deal about the experiences of minority ethnic groups within Britain. Not only is it insightful, but it also rouses anger, as each writer demonstrates just how far from equality the country I reside in is. I’ve argued with too many people who voted for Brexit only to prevent refugees entering the country and believe this backwards way of thinking should be highlighted and challenged. This is systemic racism, and the journalistic outlets in Britain are not only allowing it, but in my opinion, encouraging it by being selective in the hate crime they report and giving individuals a platform to spread their hatred.
I am only halfway through the sixth segment, but I can safely say this one will be recommended to everyone around me, action needs to be taken, and education is important in getting people to react to injustice and consequently try to prevent it.
2. We Have Always Lived in the Castle by Shirley Jackson
Shirley Jackson is a name I see crop up constantly in the book community, especially with the recent release of the Netflix adaptation of her The Haunting of Hill House. I wanted to let the hype surrounding that particular book before I delved into it, so I opted to start with this one. The synopsis hints to a mysterious atmosphere and I was not disappointed by the first few pages, as the residents of the village are prejudiced towards the narrator, but without immediate explanation as to why. I’m looking forward to hopefully enjoying this short novel and exploring Jackson’s bibliography further.
3. Faces in the Water by Janet Frame
Already having made my way through half of this Virago modern classic, I can confirm the writing is beautiful, hauntingly so. Despite the topic being tragic and anger inducing, it is difficult to put the book down, so transfixing is Frame’s voice. The treatment of the main character Istina Mavet highlights the problematic attitudes people have had and continue to have, of mental illness. I have already cried whilst reading this, and I’m not even finished with it yet, it is extremely upsetting to read about these misunderstood women, and the doctors and nurses who don’t even attempt to understand them. It mirrors the lack of support suffering individuals are faced with today, and is therefore still extremely relevant. Based on what I’ve read so far I’d definitely recommend, but I will upload a full review upon completion.
4. The Turn of the Screw by Henry James
Another member of my most recent haul is this book, which I am extremely excited to start based on the synopsis which suggests there will be tension and mystery, and potentially a haunting? I’ve been thoroughly enjoying Gothic and horror stories recently, and hopefully this will not disappoint. Furthermore, it will contribute to my attempt to read more classics this year, and will hopefully create momentum as it is a smaller one to begin with.
5. M Train by Patti Smith
Patti Smith is one of my idols, even more so after reading Just Kids and seeing her live in concert last year. She is extremely intelligent, compassionate and interesting, with a whole host of fascinating experiences under her belt, some of which she outlines in this book. I have read books, listened to music and looked at pieces of art based on Patti Smith’s recommendations, and I’m excited to return to her own writing. Just Kids was one of my favourite books from last year, and hopefully this will be one of my favourite books for this year.