Monday, 21 August 2017

Holidays Are Coming, Holidays Are Coming...

Hey, how is everyone? All tippety top? That's marvellous. I'm light of heart and free as a bird right now. Why's that, you ask? Well, I'll tell you. Today I am going on holiday.

I say holiday because it is in lots of ways, but it is also a research jaunt. Yes! I'm doing research. It is definitely NOT a made up writer-reason to have a few days away by the seaside on my own, jibbing off real life for a bit. Not all all, no sirree. It's totally legit.

Fizzy wine and a jumper. It's all you need.
The book I'm planning out at the moment will be set in a coastal town. If you've read Carry the Beautiful you'll know Tilda, our hero, likes the coast. She's all about the outdoors and the hills and the valleys. I'm not so much about any of those things but I do like a good beach. Not a sunbathing, sweaty, slapping-on-the-factor-50 type of beach. No, I prefer the type where you walk along in the howling wind wearing a jumper before getting chips on the prom. That's where me and Tilda converge. I don't think she's got much time for the Algarve either but a blowy beach is right up her street.

So I'm jetting (driving) off and getting away from it all, to get a handle on the type of location the next instalment can be set. In all honesty, as research goes it will be brief. I will take some photos, walk around a bit and reacquaint myself with a Welsh seaside town I already know quite well. Then half an hour later, when the research is over, I will be chilling the frig out. It is likely I will spend significantly more time doing that if I'm truthful.

So, now on to the exciting bits. Let me share my holiday reading.

First of all, Friend Request stood out as soon as I saw it. This is because my sister had the very same idea for a book many years ago. Sadly she didn't get any further than that so here is Laura Marshall's actual finished book. Confession: I started this yesterday. Reading holiday books before a holiday starts isn't really on. But still, that's what's happened. Soz. So far it is easy to get into, grippy and intriguing. I'm looking forward to getting back to it.

Next up is Edward Docx's Let Go My Hand. Disclaimer: I am distantly related to Ed Docx. He wouldn't know me if he fell over me but I've read most of his books and much of his journalism to date. (This long read is well worth a look, although the text is firmly in NSFW territory.) The reviews of Let Go My Hand have been consistently decent so I can't wait to get stuck in.

Lastly is The Power by Naomi Alderman. It was displayed with the label 'If you liked The Handmaid's Tale you'll like this'. This concerns me. I LOVED The Handmaid's Tale when I read it twenty years ago. It felt like one of those crazy 'imagine if the world was like this' novels that can be scary or amusing or thrilling. Now it feels that the world really is like that and it depresses me no end. I've avoided Handmaid style novels and the recent TV series because it's all so 2017. The difference with The Power is that the novel depicts a horrifically oppressive society against men. Honestly, I know this is still bad, but if I can picture the controlling male shocker currently on the nightly news having his fictional rights curbed in a book, it might just make me feel less fed up at the state of everything.

Blimey, that got heavy quickly. And today is a flippety gibbet, floaty schmloaty kind of day. It's holiday time! I'll feedback on the research when I'm back next week. For now, have a lovely week, folks. I know I fully intend to.

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