Classics Ahoy || Book Haul IX

So I’ve gone a little classics mad as of late. Since the start of December I have acquired quite a number. I received a good number of book tokens for my birthday at the end of November and a fair amount at Christmas, combined with relatives who are now no longer trying to not buy me books I’ve been very happy. I also was lucky enough to win a book token of £50 for my local store, Jarrold where I added to the classics!

 So, I bought a lot of Clothbound Classics this past few months. I have more than doubled my already quite large collection. First off I purchased the Dickens collection from Amazon – it was in their flash sales at £40 and with student discount I really couldn’t say no. I already had a copy of A Christmas Carol which was a gift a few years ago and I have gifted that to a family member.

The set contained Bleak House, Oliver Twist, Hard Times, A Tale of Two Cities, Great Expectations and, as I said, A Christmas Carol.

Then, between birthday gifts, Christmas gifts, and gifts to myself I added a few more to the collection. Tess of the D’ubervilles was a present from my grandmother, my parents (mum) bought Far From the Madding Crowd because she liked the bees on the cover! I preordered The Tenant of Wildfell Hall back in November when it was first announced as a clothbound edition as I loved the book and really wanted to add it to my collection.

The Woman in White was a bargain – I found it in an Oxfam shop for £5. It was a little battered but I couldn’t say no at that price! War and Peace was an impulse buy. I went in Waterstones to buy a paperback edition of Frankenstein and came out with that. I loved Anna Karenina so I decided it was definitely a good purchase even though I have a paperbakc somewhere… I want to read this this Summer for certain! Finally there is Dracula. I love Dracula and have been lusting after this edition for quite some time. When I won the gift voucher I decided that buying it was acceptable.

20160201_225840364_iOSPenguin owns my heart. I also went a little mad with PEL editions. What you’ll notice here is I have some duplicates. There are some books I own as Clothbound here. I’m not going to lie, I like to have collections in both and I do find a paperback easier to read. Essentially, I collect the clothbound editions as pretty objects and the paperbacks as functional objects.

So, since December I have accumulated these. Jane Eyre, Hard Times, The Sign of Four, Daniel Deronda, North and South, The Mayor of Casterbridge, Frankenstein, The House of Mirth and finally, A Room with a View.


Daniel Deronda was the one I paid a bit for. I have discovered a love of George Eliot and Daniel Deronda is pretty much impossible to find new. This edition was about £10 from Ebay and I really don’t regret it. I also purchased another book with it from the same seller for about £2.50 so it averaged out at the £6 a book I would ordinarily pay for them.

Finally the very little popular fiction I acquired.20160201_230158477_iOS It’s a very small pile indeedy. I purchased The Chimes and The Buried Giant with the voucher I won. I really want to reread The Buried Giant as I didn’t much care for it initially but it’s a book which has stuck with me quite a bit so I’m interested to see if my opinion of it changes on a reread.

I also picked up some charity shop bargains in the shape of KitchenCollected Stories of Gabriel Garcia Márquez and Poor Things.

What can be drawn from this haul is I’m going to be reading a lot of classics in the near future and I’m very excited about that!

Tag: Classics Book Tag

So, I’ve been debating doing a tag blog for a while but have been worried about translating a BookTube tag to a blog post because a lot of things are reliant on reaction to things. I’ll say it again – I wish I had the confidence to be a part of the booktube community. But more on my introversion in a future post (I’m currently reading Quiet by Susan Cain which is about introversion/extroversion so seriously, watch this space).

Anyway, the lovely Samatha (Novels and Nonsense) posted a video on the Classics Book Tag which is right up my alley and, also, very easily translated to a blog post. So I decided to give it a go! The original can be found here as a blog post!


1. An overhyped classic you really didn’t like:
2. Favourite time period to read about
3. Favourite fairy-tale
4. What is the most embarrassed classic you haven’t read yet
5. Top 5 classics you would like to read (soon)
6. Favourite modern book/series based on a classic
7. Favourite movie version/tv-series based on a classic
8. Worst classic to movie adaptation
9. Favourite edition(s) you’d like to collect more classics from
10. An underhyped classic you’d recommend to everyone

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The Book Haul to End All Book Hauls || Book Haul III

I may have gone a little crazy this month. Between meeting Sar, going on holiday and discovering a couple of beautiful little bookshops, I may have bought too many books. 39 actually. Or 41 if I include the two textbooks I bought and nearly 50 if you include the few cook books I picked up. Oops? So this is a post in which I go through them quickly. I’m not going to include too many pictures as I think nearly 40 is a bit extreme. Six of these books were covered in a previous post at the start of the month (Book Haul II) – so I’ll not include them. Instead, I am going to start from my holiday – which began on the 5th of September.

2014-09-12 20.31.08These were the books I bought on holiday. I’ve read What’s Left of Me and The Hours. But both I own as kindle editions and really wanted to own a physical copy as they’re books I loved. The others were all books that I’ve heard good things about or have wanted to read for a while. The Hours – Michael Cunningham The Moon and Sixpence – W. Somerset Maugham The Hive – Gill Hornby The Luminaries – Eleanor Catton Les Miserables – Victor Hugo Americanah – Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie What’s Left of Me – Kat Zhang Where’d You Go Bernadette – Maria Semple Moranthology – Caitlin Moran I’m really looking forward to eventually reading all of these books. The Luminaries and Les Mis are obviously going to be two that take a long, long while to get through! A few of these were recommended books from the reading challenge I take part in (previously have been book club books or the like, so are worth double points!) which is my reasoning for picking books like Where’d You Go Bernadette up. Also, I enjoyed How to Be a Woman and I’ve had a few people tell me that Moranthology is an absolute must to read so – Yay!

Coming back, if you follow me on twitter or read this blog, you’ll know that I fell in love with a bookshop. Here I bought a new edition of Rebecca. But when my loan went in I returned to Wymondham to have a little explore of the shop and I picked up a few books. 2014-09-28 13.39.09How to Be BothFrankenstein and East of Eden – all three which are books that were on my ‘to buy’ list anyway. But being able to pick them up in this cute wee indi bookshop made me feel less guilty. I also signed up to be a friend of the bookshop, meaning I get 10% off all purchases there. My resolution is to buy all the new books that I want there, rather than somewhere like waterstones or the like. Their philosophy is that if we bought 1 in 4 of our books at an independent bookshop then everything is good! So I’m going to try that. Currently I’m reading How to Be Both, and Frankenstein is going on next months TBR. East of Eden is a book I’ve wanted to read for a while. To be honest, I’ve been feeling this urge to revisit Steinbeck as I enjoyed Of Mice and Men before I had to dissect it! So I’m really looking forward to all three of these!2014-09-28 13.47.54 While I was in Wymondham, I went on a little walk to explore the surroundings and stumbled upon a little antiquarian/second hand bookshop. I hate the term ‘second hand’, I much prefer ‘preloved’. Anyway, I went in (as you do) and may have had a little accident? This preloved place was just amazing. It smelt so good. Finding all of these beautiful books in the back just made it so much better. I love places that sell second hand/preloved because they’re just magic – you never know what you’re going to find and I love that anticipation. I’ve been wanting to read some Hemingway for a long while; The Old Man and the Sea has been sat on my bookshelf for years and it’s about time I rectify that. So a nabbed a couple more because these editions are just so tiny and cute! Aldous Huxley’s A Brave New World was picked up after a friend actually recomended it to me the day before. Steinbeck and du Maurier are self explanatory (read: require no justification). 2014-09-28 13.50.49Next up is Charity Shop Haulage post-holibobs. This was quite successful too. Having enjoyed Notes on a Scandal I picked up another Zoe Heller book. The top book there is Wild Sargasso Sea by Jean Rhys. Having seen them in YouTube videos, I decided to pick up the first 3 books in the Percy Jackson series when I spotted them! I was really surprised when I found Miss Peregrine’s Home For Peculiar Children in a charity shop though – and it’s in mint condition. Result. Then for Helen of Troy – I read Cleopatra by Margaret George and really enjoyed it, so I’m looking forward to maybe sinking my teeth in to this next summer! The Birds, The Bees and Other Secrets is an impulse buy that I bought along with it in a 2 books for £1 offer! I bought a few more Vintage classics besides Revolutionary Road. Throughout the month I’ve also picked up The Three Musketeers and Catch-22. Neither of these appear to be on my Goodreads list so that takes the fiction haul past 40 books this month! Also this month I attended a customer evening at Jarrolds department store – 10% off of everything. Result.2014-09-18 20.21.36 Naturally my first stop was the basement where their book selection is. I had my eye on a couple of hardbacks, and knowing they had events with both David Mitchell (the author, not Mr Victoria Coren) and Clare Balding while I was on holiday, I was hoping that they may have some signed editions in stock. And they did. So I nabbed myself a signed edition of The Bone Clocks and a signed edition of Walking Home. I mentioned Clare in a tweet, saying I had a lovely evening and I received a lovely tweet in reply which resulted in possibly the highlight of my Summer. I can’t wait to get in to it! 2014-09-28 14.07.57My last 2 books I have to justify. So I bought 2 textbooks in waterstones, now they do 10 points per £1 for students, my points balance is soaring quickly upon the purchase of textbooks at £55-£70 each. Not only that but you get a stamp for every £10 you spend so… I sort of filled a card up when I bought 2 textbooks and I ended up with about £10 on my card so I decided to indulge myself and buy two more of the Virago Modern Classic hardback du Mauriers. Aren’t they pretty? Especially with Rebecca pride of place on top of them. So yes. I think I’m going on a self imposed Book Buying Ban of sorts after this month… I really have no restraint.

Classical Literature

So, at present I’m still struggling along with Neil Gaiman’s American Gods (which, I have to add, is going on forever) but, thanks to a wonderful part of the internet known as Booktube, I’ve found a whole host of new bookishly-minded folk to increase my reading variety. This is what brings me to the main topic of discussion – Classical Literature. Now, I’ve always had a keen interest in ancient history. I’ve always loved reading about Greeks and Romans and, particularly, Egyptians but I’ve read a woefully small amount of literature from antiquity. Last summer I read Robert Graves’ The Greek Myths and you can find a full review over at goodreads but I have to say, I think maybe it wasn’t the best place to have started with classical literature. So, Jean over at bookishthoughts is running a read-along August – during the month the goal is to read The Odyssey by Homer and Ovid’s Metamorphoses. Jean has also suggested reading Margaret Atwood’s The Penelopiad and Ali Smith’s Girl Meets Boy as the Cannongate modern retellings of the stories, which I am more than happy to do as I adore both of those books and I’d quite like to read the stories they’re both modern adaptations of.

I’m quite lucky in that I already have a beautiful Penguin clothbound edition of The Odyessey and I’m thinking I might invest in Ovid in the recently released clothbound also, just because they’re beautiful:

images from google

If anyone is interested in joining this Classical Literature readalong, there is a group on goodreads, anyone is welcome to join! I’m really, really excited about this – having been wanting to widen my reading a lot lately. So yes! This is what my reading future looks like and I like it, a lot!