This is my holiday reading list - please add/suggest/destroy as necessary!

(50 Posts)
HarderToKidnap Wed 20-Mar-13 14:39:55

I like postapoc/dystopian, Stephen King (but NOT gory horror), historical, or just generally good books. I'm going away for TWO WEEKS so will need 16 books. No, I don't know how I'm going to get them there.

Gone Girl, Gillian Flynn
The Innocents, Francesca Segal
The new Sophie Hannah (I've read the rest so I might as well)
The new Barbara Vine (see above)
Zombie Fallout by Mark Tufo
How To be a Good Wife, Emma Chapman

Most of them cos I've seen people mention them on here and I like a bit of populist fiction!

I need 10 more books please!

ThePavlovianCat Wed 20-Mar-13 16:34:20

How about The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova. It's about the history surrounding Vlad the Impaler. It's nice and chunky too!

DuchessofMalfi Wed 20-Mar-13 17:57:14

The Historian has got to be one of the worst, most boring books I've ever struggled through, Pavlovian grin I nearly lost the will to live by the end, but I hated the thought of giving up on it.

How about The Night Circus, by Erin Morgenstern. I liked it very much. Slightly disappointing ending, but still a good book. And it's quite long too grin

DuchessofMalfi Wed 20-Mar-13 17:59:33

Oh and I'm reading Atonement by Ian McEwan atm. If you haven't read it, I'd recommend it. Don't want to put it down, it's that good smile

Feenie Wed 20-Mar-13 18:07:30

I really enjoyed What Have I Done?

The Historian is a bit long and indulgent but not bad and certainly long enough for a fast reader on holiday.

But this book on Vlad the Impaler is much better (it is gory though).

If you like zombies, World War Z is good fun.

I hated Atonement, I must admit.

Have you read 'Let The Right One In' which is a Swedish vampire book? I read that on holiday one year and enjoyed it except for imho a weak ending - again, it's quite blood thirsty though.

I'd prefer 10 huge books to 16 books including light weight stuff tbh. So The Passage is big and gripping, for example (vampires but not stupid ones!) and so is The Grapes Of Wrath (bloomin' depressing though!).

Kate Atkinson?
Haven't read yet, but she's an excellent writer and this has good reviews. A departure from Jackson Brodie, this one.

I found Sophie Hannah's latest dead dull and irritating. Her last few have been below par. If you have to sacrifice one, I'd say you won't be missing owt if you drop hers!

Gillespie and I is a great read.

VerySmallSqueak Wed 20-Mar-13 19:26:54

Have you tried 'Last Light' by Alex Scarrow?

It's basically about a Britain without oil and the resulting disintegration of society.

VerySmallSqueak Wed 20-Mar-13 19:30:02

And the David Moody Autumn series of zombie books are good.
I think they are 'Autumn','The city','Disintegration','Purification' and 'Aftermath' though I may have got that a little confused.
There is also 'The Human condition' that ties in.

I thought 'Autumn' was shocking badly written, I'm afraid - just awful.

The Passage by Justin Cronin, and its sequel, The Twelve.

I would second 'Last Light'.

And add 'The Flood' by Stephen Baxter.

VerySmallSqueak Wed 20-Mar-13 19:43:25

I have to say that I don't need a book that'd get any literary awards to keep me amused though Remus grin.
For me it had a good storyline,flowed well and kept me interested.

I second 'The Flood'. by Stephen Baxter.

Bjxa21 Wed 20-Mar-13 19:47:37

Lanark by Alasdair Gray
Pilo family circus by will Elliott
Daemon and freedom tm by Daniel Suarez (2 books)
The destiny's children series by Stephen Baxter

All are books I've enjoyed, they're easy enough to read, though Lanark can be reasonably hard going on occasion. Also the second Baxter book is quite "hard" scifi. My favourites from that list are daemon and freedom tm. Proper near-future dystopia for when tech goes really really wrong!

Me neither Squeak. I loved The Passage and I enjoy Myra Grant's zombies in the blogging world books, neither of which are great literature by any stretch of the imagination - but 'Autumn' made them both look like Nobel contenders in comparison!

VerySmallSqueak Wed 20-Mar-13 19:51:49

See I wasn't as impressed with the Myra Grant books as the Moody ones.

S'pose it's just different horses for different courses.

One we can both agree on is 'World War Z' - zombie classic for sure.

VerySmallSqueak Wed 20-Mar-13 19:54:48

The Death of Grass by John Christopher is good.

Also OP if you haven't yet read the Philip Pullman books,I'd recommend.


The Grant ones made me laugh, because I like the brother and his 'poking them with a stick' mentality.

Really OP you should be ignoring all of these silly modern ones and reading Dracula though - it is good. You might like Frankenstein too, or some Wilkie Collins.

VerySmallSqueak Wed 20-Mar-13 20:01:08

Yes,they were refreshingly different to a lot of other zombiefiction,I'll say that Remus. I didn't dislike them,as such.

Madeleine Roux's zombie books are good 'Allison Hewitt is trapped' and 'Sadie Walker is stranded'.

GinOnTwoWheels Thu 21-Mar-13 06:55:07

* I'm going away for TWO WEEKS so will need 16 books. No, I don't know how I'm going to get them there.*

I'm surprised no-one has mentioned a kindle (or other ereader) yet.

Sadly you've missed the Amazon 20p books, but it seems ideal for solving your suitcase space at least. Almost everyone who gets one, including me, loves them, even if they're a complete 'real books' nut, which it seems that you are smile.

Recently, I have liked 'The Help', 'Nothing to Envy', the Peter James and Ann Cleeves Shetland books and the Monica Lewycka books as well.

CoteDAzur Thu 21-Mar-13 13:27:03

16 books for a 2 week holiday shock You need to get a Kindle!

Interview With The Vampire (vampire obviously smile)
The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo (crime/thriller)
This Thing Of Darkness (historical)
Brave New World (dystopian)
The Stand (post-apocalyptic)
Cloud Atlas (6 connected stories over several centuries, incl. 1 dystopian and 1 post-apocalyptic, both very good)

OneHolyCow Thu 21-Mar-13 15:16:30

The new Barbara Vine was IMHO extremely boring and I could not have finished it if it were last in my stack on a holiday with no bookshop in sight. Yes, like that.
Have you read Douglas Copeland? He's got a new one, Player One. Nice bit of dystopia but small enough to read by the pool. Get the Justin Cronin ones for a bit of a more meaty read, which will last you longer.
And yes, you do need a kindle ;-)

Yes to This Thing Of Darkness and yes to Brave New World.

Douglas Copeland's Girlfriend In A Coma,Life After God and Miss Wyoming all good. Generation X quite fun. The others less good.

I love 'A Heartbreaking Work Of Staggering Genius' and it has the added advantage of being useful as a doorstop too.

juneau Thu 21-Mar-13 17:12:16

You get through at least a book a day? Wow! I'm a fast reader, but I'd never get through a whole book every single day of a holiday. Do you do anything but read?

juneau Thu 21-Mar-13 17:13:23

P.S. This Thing of Darkness is brilliant, but I'd be extremely impressed if you read that in a day. It's 700 pages long!

DuchessofMalfi Thu 21-Mar-13 17:54:30

The sort of holidays we have (with young children), I find the number of books I read drops whilst we are away. At best, I manage a book a week. On holiday I'm lucky if I manage that. We're out more, during the day and in the evenings. And I'm more tired after a day at the beach.

I'm in awe of your reading speed, Kidnap smile

I tend to read at least a book a day on holiday, even with sightseeing etc. I tend to wake up earlier and stay up later and read stupidly quickly anyway. I can easily get through two short/medium novels on a 4 hour plane trip.

pointythings Thu 21-Mar-13 21:18:33

C.J Sansom's Matthew Shardlake series
Nicci French (crime)
Some Minette Walters - particularly recommend Acid Row, The Dark Room and The Chameleon's Shadow
Tim Powers - Dinner at Deviant's Palace (dystopian fic, but may be hard to get)
Reginald Hill - The Woodcutter (this is his best, it's an amazing psychological thriller)

pointythings Thu 21-Mar-13 21:19:00

And I'm also the sort of person who needs 16 books on a two week trip.

NorbertDentressangle Thu 21-Mar-13 21:26:22

Wow! I thought I'd pop on here and have a look to see what people are recommending so that I can plan future reads and I am shock at those who can read 16 books in 2 weeks!

I think I must use a book as something to 'people watch' from behind when I'm on the beach or by the pool as I get very little reading done grin.

As I'm here anyway though...I'm currently reading the Girl Who played with Fire (second in the Girl With The Dragon Tattoo trilogy and really enjoying it!)

Ooh yes to Sansom.

Who is the Pillars Of the Earth guy too? They are not great literature by any stretch of the imagination but they might last a day or two.

pointythings Thu 21-Mar-13 22:25:10

Remus that would be Ken Follett. Great holiday reading.
There are times when I think you must be related to me - bar a few differences over Stephen King we are sisters under the skin grin.

Lighthousekeeping Thu 21-Mar-13 22:30:04

The Woman who Went to Bed for a year has really tickled me. Easy reading for holidays.

WormCanner Fri 22-Mar-13 15:13:55

I did enjoy the Barbara Vine, but it isn't her usual doomy gloomy mystery, it's in a different vein. If you are expecting something similar to Asta's Book, you'll be disappointed but approach it with no preconceptions and you may enjoy it.

In a similar style to Vine/Rendell is Erin Kelly's The Poison Tree, and The Sick Rose (not quite as good as TPT but still a good read). I've just finished her latest The Burning Air, which I thought nowhere near as good.

I think you should get a Kindle, then you can put all 16 books on it and still have plenty of space in your suitcase! grin

Pointy smile Hi sis!

Did you used to be PointyDog btw?

pointythings Fri 22-Mar-13 18:07:35

Hi Remus - no, I've been pointy lots of things but PointyDog is someone else.
I still luffs you, though.


I haven't seen PointyDog for ages.

Which King books have we disagreed about? I bet it was Needful Things!

pointythings Fri 22-Mar-13 20:33:21

I think Needful Things was one of them (I don't think it's one of his best but I don't hate it). Could it have been Duma Key? (Which I think is one of his best, but not everyone agrees). I also like Lisey's Story, which isn't everyone's cup of tea, and hate From a Buick 8, The Tommyknockers and Dreamcatcher.

I think we have a few other book likes in common as well.

It might well have been DK. I didn't hate it but the sisters bored the hell out of me and I thought the doll thing was silly. I liked the dude on the beach and the old woman and the recovering from an accident stuff.

Lisey's Story I like except for the monster, which I think is poorly described/executed. The tin opener thing still fills me with horror whenever I think of it.

Remus-yesssss, pillars of the earth, Ken Follett, also his 'world without end'.
I loved those books, took me a while to read them as they were quite big. And I read them on my Kindle. So took a bit longer

There's a WW1 (iirc) one too, set partly in Russia. Something to do with giants. Again, it's a huge book - the writing is a bit stilted but it's well researched, I think and certainly diverting enough for a holiday read.

Sally vickers 'miss garnets angel'
Really good.

pointythings Fri 22-Mar-13 20:52:51

I do tend to go for volume for holiday reads. And OP, have you ever read an author called James McGee? He writes a series set around the time of the Napoleonic wars, featuring a Bow Street Runner called Matthew Hawkwood. Series in sequence is
- Ratcatcher
- Resurrectionists
- Rapscallion
- Rebellion

All well worth a read.

Oh yes - I've read those too, Pointy. He is quite sexy! Again, not great writing but good fun - sort of Famous Five for grown ups.

HarderToKidnap Sat 23-Mar-13 10:50:59

Thank you everyone for you recommendations!! I'm really chuffed to get so many BUT this thread is only serving to confirm my secret belief that I might have read everything worth reading. I've read and enjoyed in various degrees pretty much everything mentioned above apart from some of the more obscure zombie novels!! But I will look into Sally Vickers, and some of the dystopian stuff. Reluctantly I will strike off Hannah and Vine, and get them from the library eventually. I've remebered I haven't read Restoration yet, and I love Rose Tremain so will put that on. Have also added the new Marian Keyes, new Maggie O'Farrell, The Snow Child, and NW by Zadie Smith. Might add Capital too.

I must admit this is my first holiday with a mobile DS so might not get as much reading done as I thought, but best to be prepared!!

marissab Sat 23-Mar-13 16:54:29

Ok i bet you havn't read an obscure novel called "jim giraffe". It's a black comedy with lots of references to 80's computers but i thought it was brilliantly entertaining and fun. Look it up on good reads and read the reviews.

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