- The total number of books I possess I must own several hundred books. There is a bookcase in my lounge and two in my bedroom; all of them are floor to ceiling and I also have four shelves in another bedroom.
- The last book I read That one is quite difficult as I’ve been doing a course in C20th Literature which has just finished. The last two books I’ve read have been re-reads of the two books I enjoyed reading most and chose to write about for my final assignment. One is Paradise by Abdulrazak Gurnah. This book was on the short list for the Booker prize in 1994. It’s a beautifully written account of the hinterland from coastal East Africa to the Great Lakes prior to the First World War. The other book is Philip K Dick’s science fiction novel Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? The film Blade Runner is a very loose adaptation of the novel. Although the characters are stereotypical and the plot is formulaic, it deals with some deep philosophical issues and is a thoroughly good read.
- The last book I bought is Playing Sardines by Michele Roberts. I bought it at the Oakhaven Hospice shop (a cancer charity) in anticipation of having more time to read purely for pleasure. I came across Michele Roberts when I was doing a short course on writing fiction.
- Five meaningful books Many of the books I read as a child meant a great deal because they laid down an interest in books. The earliest one I can remember being significant is Now We Are Six by A.A.Milne. I can still recite many of the rhymes and it gave me an early love of poetry. The next one I have to include although it’s also on Jan’s list is Little Women. It was my first slightly more grown up book when I started to get into reading full length novels. I was very upset when Beth died. My third book is Dr Zhivago which fired my imagination and made me want to learn Russian so that I could read Pasternak’s poetry in the original form. My fourth book is Cat’s Eye by Margaret Atwood. I love Atwood but this one has remained one of my all time favourites. My fifth book is Our Mutual Friend by Dickens. I saw the TV adaptation and read the novel afterwards. I thought the story was magical and it wasn’t what at all what I expected from Dickens. There are lots of others like Hans Anderson’s Fairy Tales, Jane Eyre, Wuthering Heights, Scenes from a Museum, North and South. I could go on…
Now the problem is to find five more people