Wednesday, 16 March 2011


I'm under the weather with flu this week. Big advantage: reading lots. Big disadvantage: not writing.

The opening of Ten Square Miles - my artist collective's exhibition - took place on Saturday evening and it was a blast. See here for pics. We took the Battle of Aughrim as our jumping off point so there was lots of fodder in that.

I wrote prose this year - an imagined monologue by the wife of a farmer who was co-opted into fighting on the Jacobite side. I had to make it up from scratch as I couldn't find any testimonials from women.

Speaking of women, can you all please recommend some well-written recent novels by women to me? I am hungry for good, contemporary novels and I am especially interested in what women are writing. I'd be grateful. I flicked through a load of uninspired first pages of novels in the library the other day and came away with a book of short stories. Which is grand except I really want to be reading novels just now. HELP!?!


  • Lyrics Alley by Leila Aboulela (Weidenfeld & Nicolson) - Sudanese; 3rd Novel
  • Jamrach's Menagerie by Carol Birch (Canongate) - British; 10th Novel
  • Room by Emma Donoghue (Picador) - Irish; 7th Novel
  • The Pleasure Seekers by Tishani Doshi (Bloomsbury) - Indian; 1st Novel
  • Whatever You Love by Louise Doughty (Faber and Faber) - British; 6th Novel
  • A Visit from the Goon Squad by Jennifer Egan (Corsair) - American; 4th Novel
  • The Memory of Love by Aminatta Forna (Bloomsbury) - British/Sierra Leonean; 2nd Novel
  • The London Train by Tessa Hadley (Jonathan Cape) - British; 4th Novel
  • Grace Williams Says it Loud by Emma Henderson (Sceptre) - British; 1st Novel
  • The Seas by Samantha Hunt (Corsair) - American; 1st Novel
  • The Birth of Love by Joanna Kavenna (Faber and Faber) - British; 2nd Novel
  • Great House by Nicole Krauss (Viking) - American; 3rd Novel
  • The Road to Wanting by Wendy Law-Yone (Chatto & Windus) - American; 3rd Novel
  • The Tiger's Wife by Téa Obreht (Weidenfeld & Nicolson) - Serbian/American; 1st Novel
  • The Invisible Bridge by Julie Orringer (Viking) - American; 1st Novel
  • Repeat it Today with Tears by Anne Peile (Serpent's Tail) - British; 1st Novel
  • Swamplandia! by Karen Russell (Chatto & Windus) - American; 1st Novel
  • The Secret Lives of Baba Segi's Wives by Lola Shoneyin (Serpent's Tail) - British/Nigerian; 1st Novel
  • The Swimmer by Roma Tearne (Harper Press) - British; 4th Novel
  • Annabel by Kathleen Winter (Jonathan Cape) - Canadian; 1st Novel


Laina said...

Hi Nuala, I'm currently reading a book for teens - not sure if that'd be up your street or not. It's by an Irish author I know, Paula Leyden, and it's beautifully written and just released - it's called The Butterfly Heart.

kaabloom said...

Quite enjoyed Nicole Krauss's History of Love - bit of a tepid title but the subject matter may appeal and it is quite intriguingly constructed


Thanks a million! Appreciate the recs. Getting lots of recs on Facebook too.

Words A Day said...

I recently enjoyed "Die A Little" by Megan Abbott - a slice of 1950s noir. Look forward to checking out the photos.

Lory said...

May I suggest "Revolutions" by Lory Manrique-Hyland ?? :)


Lory - as you know, I've read it!! :)