Tuesday, 3 January 2017

My Back Pages - December


Well, are you set for the big finish? You'll recall at the beginning of the year I'd set for myself the target of reading 50 books this year. Well, I went a little over, zipping through 6 books last month and ending out the year with a total of 67. It was an interesting month, as electric as ever, and I gave four books five/five stars.

First there was This Was a Man by Jeffrey Archer, one of my favourite authors, the 7th and final book in the so-called Clifton Chronicles, a sprawling family history of business and politics.

Then there was the excellent Testimony: A Memoir, the long-anticipated autobiography of The Band's Robbie Robertson.

Then I read a book recommended by my wife, The Book of Negroes by Canadian author Lawrence Hill. Very well written. Great story.

Don't know why, but I picked up Phil Collins' autobiography, Not Dead Yet: The Memoir. Meh. It was so-so. But it had a lot of interesting trivia about Genesis and Collins' solo career.

And then I read two excellent novels. The first was Pulitzer Prize winner Michael Chabon's Moonglow. The second was Steven Rowley's first book, Lily and the Octopus, a quirky tale about a man and his dachshund.

So here's how I rated each book:

This Was a Man - Jeffrey Archer *****
Testimony: A Memoir - Robbie Robertson *****
The Book of Negroes - Lawrence Hill *****
Not Dead Yet: The Memoir - Phil Collins ****
Moonglow - Michael Chabon ****
Lilly and the Octopus - Steven Rowley *****

Later this week I'll re-cap my reads for 2016 and let you in on my favourites of the year.

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