Normally I’d write only about crafty topics (with the occasional foray into travel) but I had to have a break from crochet for a while as I seem to have given myself ‘tennis elbow’; and other things were getting in the way too, so I have been indulging in one of my other favourite activities: reading.  I always read – I’m one of those people who will read the ingredients on the ketchup bottle if nothing else is available! – so I generally have at least two books on the go.  Now I’ve given in and got a Kindle it’s more like five.  My ‘goto’ authors for the last few months have been Terry Pratchett*, Dana Stabenow, Andrea Camillieri, Sue Grafton, Kate Atkinson, M C Beaton (only the Agatha series) which were familiar and comforting (even if the subject matter of the crime novels is usually quite gruesome). Pratchett I love because his books can be read on so many levels – as well as being absurdly silly – and because I was able to share this love with a very dear friend who sadly passed away last year.

I don’t often experiment with ‘new’ authors, i.e. those who are new to me, but recently I was tempted by a Kindle Daily Deal and bought ‘The Golem and Djinni’ by Helene Wecker: this is a debut novel and like many people I am desperate to read her next release.

Some reviewers have called this a ‘fantasy’ novel but I see it more as ‘magical realism’ in a similar vein to the novels of Angela Carter, particularly ‘Nights at the Circus’ with perhaps a touch of A S Byatt’s ‘The Djinn in the Nightingale’s Eye”. The tale is set in New York in 1899 – as the title suggests two very unlikely creatures meet and their fates become entwined,  For me it was not just the story line that held my attention but also the quality of the writing and the historical detail – I now want to find out more about the Bowery and the Lower East Side, locations which up till now I’d only registered in songs but enough of this – just read it! Read the rest of this entry »