The bliss of summer reading. A comfortable chair under the apple tree, white clouds sailing in a blue sky, and new worlds to get lost in. And wonderfully, all these diverse titles are from the city library.
First in the pile, and last to be read, 'I May Be Some Time', by Francis Spufford. I love the same author's 'The Child That Books Built', and have been wanting to read more of his writing. With a subtitle of 'Ice and the English Imagination', it's obviously towards the literary end of the spectrum, and so I've saved it for when I have time to appreciate its abstract concepts.
Next, an attempt to understand something of bio-dynamic growing principles. I'm not much the wiser after reading this book. I am pretty much already on the organic wavelength, but I struggled with the more mystical aspects such as burying powdered quartz in a cow horn over the winter to make a 'preparation' for use as a plant spray. Although I might try sowing and harvesting according to the phases of the moon (if I make a huge effort to get organised), I don't see myself stirring bio-dynamic preparations in a bucket of water for an hour, while creating vortices in opposite directions.
More Francis Spufford! This time an account of the Soviet planned economy cast as fictionalised documentary. Absolutely fascinating.
And from one Communist state to another, this account of life inside North Korea. Extremes of famine, disastrous central economic planning (again), and the god-like worship of the leader.
And finally, a book I borrow from time to time so that I can savour Monty Don's account of the passing seasons in his garden.
It always amazes me in home and lifestyle magazines that so many homes are featured which have no bookcases. Not a single book. No books in the bedrooms, dining room, living room, bathroom, hall...Thinking of a blogging friend at Writing from Scotland who is moving house very soon - I hope you get your books moved safely, Christine.