An update on my readathon is well overdue. Frankly, it's been going badly. The winner's being announced tomorrow and I still have four books to read. It's an impossible task. In reality, I gave up over a week ago, I just didn't admit it to myself.
I don't like giving up on a challenge, especially as I'd decided when I've finally achieved reading the longlist before announcement, I could put my Booker readathon behind me and move on to other challenges. I've been working at this challenge for a few years now and was convinced that this was the year I was going to crack it. So many short books and I started in good time. But, you know how it goes, that life thing happened ...
I finished J M Coetzee's "The Schooldays of Jesus" on September 26th and I'm still less than 150 pages into A L Kennedy's "Serious Sweet". Why? Well, I had a tough book club read in between - of which more in another post. But I've also moved to reading actual real books - paper instead of electronic. Whilst that has improved my bank balance no end as they are library loans, it does make it impossible to read in bed once the bloke has fallen asleep. I also tend not to chuck hardbacks into my handbag just in case I find a spare moment to read, as I do with my e-reader. I never expected that decision to bite me in quite this manner.
But way more than this, I've had to really drive myself along this readathon, forcing myself to read. And it's been tough. And, for me, the reading of books has never been a tough prospect. But this selection has given me little joy, really very little. So, I can but say that whilst there are still four books to read - only two of which made it through to the shortlist - I've been bitterly disappointed in this year's selection. I think my Booker love affair has finally come to an end. With the lack of commonwealth writers, it's just not what it once was - a gateway of rememberance to my past. A past spent growing up in the third world. Despite the fact that I've now lived longer in England, my heart still lives out there in the tropics.