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Not the best start: reading the Women’s Prize 2014

I was so excited about reading the Women’s Prize Longlist I jumped right in, and, well, sadly, it hasn’t been the most auspicious start for three reasons.

1. I began with A Girl is a Half-Formed Thing.



It was the book everyone was talking about, so it seemed like a good idea.  But I should have known better.  As so frequently happens with books that everyone’s talking about, I just don’t get it.  And the weird hybrid thought/speech writing style was so annoying (I kept waiting for it to stop) that it made me give up after having read 20%, given up three hours of my life I won’t get back and having reminded myself “this is a hobby – something you do for fun – if you’re not enjoying it, stop”.

2. I tried to follow this up with a safe bet: Still Life with Breadcrumbs.

still life


I love Anna Quindlen so was sure this book wouldn’t annoy me.  And it didn’t.  But it was at the other end of the scale: it was too safe.  Even the cover is safe. It felt like every well-written ‘pink book’ I have ever read.  It’s the kind of book you would neither recommend to a friend, nor dissuade them from reading.  It is full of aphorisms that you feel you may have read somewhere else before, but just aren’t sure. It’s no prize winner.

3. I dropped my kindle in the bath.  Ok, I realise this isn’t the judge’s fault, but it’s frustrating.  So now I am reading The Bear on my phone.  At the moment (about 30% of the way in) I am enjoying it, but not loving it.  Similarly to how I felt about Still Life with Breadcrumbs…

But I am going to power on and not get too despondent.  I have always found wonders through the Women’s Prize and am sure this year will be no different.  It’s just been a run of bad luck.  Now, time to order another damn kindle….


About bloggingthelonglist

An avid reader, but I tend to stick to what I know I am comfortable with. Trying to break out of the comfort zone...

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