Read out?

Bloganuary Day 18: Flagging, but sticking with it

What book is next on your reading list?

I used to be a voracious reader, and from a very early age too. I could already read before I went to school at four and a half, and some of my clearest childhood memories are of lying on the living-room floor devouring heavy old hardback editions of ‘David Copperfield’ and ‘The Pickwick Papers’.

But now not so much. The last book I finished reading was Proust, which I completed – for the second time – in February last year. After that, I consciously took a break from fiction and, never having been particularly drawn to non-fiction I seem to have lapsed.

I did take up Pickwick Papers again, reasoning that, as it was close to sixty years since I last read it, it was probably worth revisiting. However, I found that I remembered much of it and so I laid it aside after a few weeks.

Since then, I just haven’t been able to summon up the enthusiasm. Of course I do still read, but it’s in bite-sized chunks now. Newspaper articles, the TLS; currently, that’s about it.

At this stage I truly don’t know whether my appetite will return. If it does, then top of my list would probably be ‘The Mirror And The Light’, the third part of Hilary Mantel’s ‘Wolf Hall’ trilogy.

I also still have a bit of a hankering for mounting a third assault on ‘Remembrance Of Things Past’. It runs to over 3,000 pages and I know that I haven’t got the most out of it yet. If there is a next time I would do my homework first by reading some of the many commentaries. There may well not be a third time but there definitely won’t be a fourth.

Good stuff, but he does go on a bit

For the moment, though, next up is most likely to be the ‘Livret du Citoyen’. Apparently, this contains everything you need to know to get you through the interview stage of application for French nationalisation. It’s about 24 pages so even I could manage that.


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