March 2020 TBR

I’ve never been so grateful for lighter evenings.

February was a hard month for me, it also meant that my reading was pretty much non-existent, expect for university. But with the sun shining more and spring flowers starting to emerge, there’s new hope for Spring.

Here’s a small list of books I want to read this month:

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Inland by Téa Obreht (Paperback) – I’m reading this for a blog tour I’m taking part in to celebrate the longlist announcement of the Dylan Thomas prize. I’ve heard good things about this book and it sounds fascinating!

In the lawless, drought-ridden lands of the Arizona Territory in 1893, two extraordinary lives unfold. Nora is an unflinching frontierswoman awaiting the return of the men in her life–her husband, who has gone in search of water for the parched household, and her elder sons, who have vanished after an explosive argument. Nora is biding her time with her youngest son, who is convinced that a mysterious beast is stalking the land around their home.

Meanwhile, Lurie is a former outlaw and a man haunted by ghosts. He sees lost souls who want something from him, and he finds reprieve from their longing in an unexpected relationship that inspires a momentous expedition across the West. The way in which Lurie’s death-defying trek at last intersects with Nora’s plight is the surprise and suspense of this brilliant novel.

Mythical, lyrical, and sweeping in scope, Inland is grounded in true but little-known history. It showcases all of Téa Obreht’s talents as a writer, as she subverts and reimagines the myths of the American West, making them entirely–and unforgettably–her own.

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The Foundling by Stacey Halls (Ebook) – This was on my TBR pile last month. I’ve already read about a 10th of this and really enjoyed Stacey’s previous book, so will hopefully get round to finishing this this month.

London, 1754.

Six years after leaving her illegitimate daughter Clara at London’s Foundling Hospital, Bess Bright returns to reclaim the child she has never known. Dreading the worst – that Clara has died in care – the last thing she expects to hear is that her daughter has already been reclaimed – by her. Her life is turned upside down as she tries to find out who has taken her little girl – and why. Less than a mile from Bess’ lodgings in the city, in a quiet, gloomy townhouse on the edge of London, a young widow has not left the house in a decade. When her close friend – an ambitious young doctor at the Foundling Hospital – persuades her to hire a nursemaid for her daughter, she is hesitant to welcome someone new into her home and her life. But her past is threatening to catch up with her and tear her carefully constructed world apart.

From the bestselling author of The Familiars, and set against the vibrant backdrop of Georgian London, The Foundling explores families, secrets, class, equality, power and the meaning of motherhood.

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Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel (Audio) – This is actually a two-in-one audio, as it’s both Wolf Hall and Bring Up the Bodies. It’s an awfully long audio book though so I’m at least hoping that I finish Wolf Hall this month. I’ve really enjoyed historical fiction in the past and after hearing so much about this book, I thought I’d give it a read before the final book in the trilogy is released.

Wolf Hall and Bring Up the Bodies, the first two instalments in Hilary Mantel’ s Tudor trilogy, have gathered readers and praise in equal and enormous measure. They have been credited with elevating historical fiction to new heights and animating a period of history many thought too well known to be made fresh.

Through the eyes and ears of Thomas Cromwell, the books’ narrative prism, we are shown Tudor England, the court of King Henry VIII. Cromwell is a wholly original man: the son of a brutal blacksmith, a political genius, a briber, a charmer, a bully, a man with a delicate and deadly expertise in manipulating people and events.

In Wolf Hall we witness Cromwell’ s rise, beginning as clerk to Cardinal Wolsey, Henry’ s chief advisor, charged with securing the divorce the pope refuses to grant. He is soon to become his successor. By 1535, when the action of Bring Up the Bodies begins, Cromwell is Chief Minister to Henry, his fortunes having risen with those of Anne Boleyn, Henry’ s second wife. Anne’ s days, though, are marked. Cromwell watches as the king falls in love with silent, plain Jane Seymour, sensing what Henry’ s affection will mean for his queen, for England, and for himself.

Are you setting yourself a TBR for the month? Let me know in the comments below what you’ve added to your list!

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