Winding Up the Week #336

An end of week recap

We read in bed because reading is halfway between life and dreaming, our own consciousness in someone else’s mind.”
 Anna Quindlen (born 8th July 1952)

I wind up the week from Whittlebury Park Campsite, close to the Silverstone racing circuit in Towcester. I am here with a party of Formula One fanatics (my partner being one of them) for the British Grand Prix, although, personally, I find the event rather too noisy for my liking and opt to remain with my feet up in the caravan reading a book while the others cheer on Lewis Hamilton. They are appalled by my lack of interest in our home-grown racing talent – and I am equally aghast at the atrocious racket emanating from the track (I wear earplugs to muffle the noise). However, in the evenings we bond over a barbeque and bottle of red, so we’re not wholly incompatible.

As ever, this is a post in which I summarise books read, reviewed and currently on my TBR shelf. In addition to a variety of literary titbits, I look ahead to forthcoming features, see what’s on the nightstand and keep readers abreast of various book-related happenings.


If you are planning a reading event, challenge, competition, or anything else likely to be of interest to the book blogging community, please let me know. I will happily share your news here with the fabulous array of bibliowonks who read this weekly wind up.

* Irresistible Items *

Umpteen fascinating articles appeared on my bookdar last week. I generally make a point of tweeting (soon, perhaps, Mastodonning) my favourite finds (or adding them to my Facebook group page), but in case you missed anything, here are a selection of interesting snippets:


Esquire: The Year of the Slim Volume – “Short books—like novellas, standalone short stories, and poetry collections—are finally getting their due. What took so long?” wonders Kate Dwyer. 

BBC Europe: Victoria Amelina: Ukrainian writer dies after Kramatorsk strike – “The award-winning Ukrainian writer Victoria Amelina has died from her injuries after a Russian missile hit a pizza restaurant in the eastern city of Kramatorsk,” reports George Wright.

The Sydney Morning Herald: Eight best books this week: An emotionally intelligent novel to philosophers speaking up – Reviewers Cameron Woodhead and Fiona Capp look at recent fiction and non-fiction – including Clara Törnvall’s “well-crafted and powerfully unsettling” The Autists: Women on the Spectrum.

The Dial: My Literary Breakup – “The writer Elisabeth Åsbrink was friends with the controversial Swedish playwright Lars Norén for 15 years. One day he suddenly declared that the friendship was over. It meant that she went from being loved in the first three volumes of his published diaries to being loathed in the final two. Here, Åsbrink writes about their complicated relationship.”

The Cardiff Review: New Canadian Writers: Rachael Moorthy – “Rachael Moorthy is the debut author of River Meets the Sea, ‘a spellbinding, spirited tale of two men exploring masculinity, race, and belonging in a desperate search to feel at home in their own skins,’” writes Jamie Gillingham.

The Brooklyn Rail: Rodrigo Rey Rosa with Tobias Carroll – Novelist Tobias Carroll in conversation with Guatemalan writer Rodrigo Rey Rosa, whose latest book is the thriller The Country of Toó.

Prospect: A literary walk through England’s proud, poverty-stricken seaside towns – “From Orwell to Beryl Bainbridge, from Ishiguro to—now—Madeleine Bunting, writers have drawn great inspiration from these coastal edgelands,” says Lucy Scholes in her review of The Seaside: England’s Love Affair. Fiction: A retelling of the ‘Ramayana’ from the perspective of Ravana’s queen, Mandodari – “An excerpt from Mandodari: The Sati Series IV, by Koral Dasgupta.”

Electric Literature: We Need Stories About The Golden Age of Sapphic Love – “Amelia Possanza’s Lesbian Love Story is a sexy illuminating tour of the lives of 20th-century queer women,” says Jeffrey Masters.

Literary Hub: 26 books out in paperback this July! – Gabrielle Bellot brings you “a fantastic new list of books in paperback” appearing this month.

iNews: The List by Yomi Adegoke review: A novel that asks, if our loved ones were cancelled, could we defend them? – “Adegoke’s debut novel [The List] takes our basest emotions and looks at how we deal with them when pushed to our limits,” writes Kuba Shand-Baptiste.

The Irish Times: The story about WB Yeats’ bones being sought from a French ossuary inspires French writer – “An Irish Times article on the controversy over the poet’s remains provided the creative spark for young French radio journalist Maylis Besserie,” finds Lara Marlowe.

Caught by the River: At the Edge of the Woods – “It is left to the reader to decide how much of Laura’s hallucinatory bent is a result of trauma, laudanum-induced hallucination, or a magical realist revelation of her witchiness,” writes Abi Andrews of At the Edge of the Woods.

LARB: Quantum Mechanics: On McKenzie Wark’s “Raving” – Vivian Medithi reviews McKenzie Wark’s Raving.

The Booker Prizes: Max Porter on publishing The Vegetarian: ‘Everyone agreed that this was an important book’ – “Max Porter explains the process behind the publication of The Vegetarian, [the Booker’s] July Book of the Month, and why it was essential that it reached readers who might have felt that translated literature was not for them.”

Pop Matters: The Punk Rock Sci-Fi of Izumi Suzuk’s ‘Hit Parade of Tears’ – “Though her fiction retains elements of future conjecture and civilizational prognosis, like punk rock itself, Izumi Suzuki is more committed to the sci-fi genre as an edgy social and emotional analysis tool,” writes Christopher J. Lee.

The Spinoff: The Words For Her: a thrilling pandemic novel that beats Black Mirror – Books editor Claire Mabey reviews the stunning new novel from Thomasin Sleigh, published by Lawrence & Gibson, one of the most interesting indie presses in Aotearoa [the contemporary Māori-language name for New Zealand].

Lux: From the Labor Bund to the Lesbian Bar – Molly Crabapple on the “birth and later years of the poet Irena Klepfisz.”

The Millions: Most Anticipated: The Great 2023B Book Preview – Sophia Stewart presents The Millions’ latest biannual pick of the most exciting reads of 2023.

Byline: Mystery Is Sexy With Katherine Faw – “Fiction writer Katherine Faw breaks down her lack of social media, inspiration, and what her third book has in store,” to Cora Lee.

France 24: Finnish literary star Miki Liukkonen dies aged 33 – “Finnish author Miki Liukkonen, considered one of the brightest stars of Finland’s literary scene, has died aged 33, his publisher said.”

VCU News: Tess Gunty wins the VCU Cabell First Novelist Award for ‘The Rabbit Hutch’ – American author Tess Gunty has won the VCU (Virginia Commonwealth University) Cabell First Novelist Award with her contemporary coming-of-age story The Rabbit Hutch.

London Review of Books: Where be your jibes now? – Patricia Lockwood with a piece on Something to Do with Paying Attention by David Foster Wallace.

Quill & Quire: Love, Death & Other Words: two indie booksellers team up to take horror and romance on the road – “Two new Toronto-based independent bookstore owners aim to recreate the anticipation and joy of elementary school book fairs for adults with a series of events across Ontario this year,” says Zeahaa Rehman.

Pen Transmissions: I’m Not Trying to Write Japanese Literature Per Se: Aoko Matsuda in Conversation with Polly Barton – “Aoko Matsuda and Polly Barton on prizes, patriarchy and politics.”

Air Mail: Going After the Gonzo – “When the author [Rich Cohen] was sent to visit Hunter S. Thompson—five months before Thompson shot himself—he found a writer trapped inside a legend.”

Sydney Review of Books: A Third Space: Giving voice to works in progress – Romy Ash and Rose Michael on the birth of NovelLab and talking writing.

The Ploughshares: “What drew me to Lange was her desire to make lives of the unseen seen”: An Interview with Jasmin DarznikThe Bohemians, Jasmin Darznik’s second novel, imagines the early adulthood of the famous photographer Dorothea Lange.

JSTOR Daily: Remembering H.D. – “Hilda Doolittle, aka H.D., had her champions among modern scholars, but she’s still often left off modern poetry course syllabi.”

The Nation: The Miseducation of Mario Vargas Llosa – “A recent collection, The Call of the Tribe, explains why the Peruvian writer rejected the left and embraced the thinking of Friedrich Hayek and his ilk.” 

Brittle Paper: All-women Panel Announces Shortlist for 2023 AKO Caine Prize for African Writing – The AKO Caine Prize for African Writing has announced the shortlist for its 23rd edition, which includes titles from Senegal, Botswana, Nigeria and Uganda.

Conversations with Tyler: Noam Chomsky on Language, Left Libertarianism, and Progress – Tyler Cowen asks the question: “At 94, why does Noam Chomsky still answer every email?”

Slate: A Forgotten Minor Scandal at the New Yorker, Remembered 26 Years Later – “An interview with former New Yorker fiction editor Bill Buford about how things worked in the Tina Brown era.”

SWI: Peter Bieri, Swiss author of ‘Night Train to Lisbon’, dies – “Swiss philosopher Peter Bieri, also known as novelist Pascal Mercier, has died aged 79, his publisher Hanser Verlag has announced.”

Jacobin: The Scientific Socialism of H. G. Wells – “The poverty of industrial England was the backdrop of H. G Wells’s childhood. This experience instilled in him a clear-eyed realism with which he rejected both utopianism and progressive notions that socialism could be won without class struggle,” writes Joshua Fagan.

Literary Hub: How Famous Writers Mourned the Death of Their Beloved Pets – “Sara Bader on what it means to lose a loved one.”



If there is something you would particularly like to see on Winding Up the Week or if you have any suggestions, questions, or comments for Book Jotter in general, please drop me a line or comment below. I would be delighted to hear from you.

Thank you for taking the time to read this post. I wish you a week bountiful in books and rich in reading.

NB In this feature, ‘winding up’ refers to the act of concluding something and should not be confused with the British expression: ‘wind-up’ – an age-old pastime of ‘winding-up’ friends and family by teasing or playing pranks on them. If you would like to know more about this expression, there is an excellent description on Urban Dictionary.

Categories: Winding Up the Week

Tags: , , , , , ,

22 replies

  1. A cat picture to begin your post and a cat book–my kind of windup post! Thank you, Paula 🙂

  2. I’m with you Paula, the appeal of F1 baffles me. But a day spent reading then barbeque and wine in the evening sounds lovely! I hope everyone’s having a great time.

  3. One of these just inspired my post for tomorrow! Yeah! And, are you really still trying Mastodon? lol

  4. Some great links. Felt v moved by the death of Victoria Amelina not least because I knew nothing about her until a tweet by a friend of hers took up a steady place in my timeline. So I found out a bit more and a bit more though I still have not read anything in her own words except Tweets. Re F1 I think it’s very good of you to go along and look after all the stuff (and read) while everyone else goes to Silverstone with or without ear plugs. I like the opening quote as I rarely get the chance to read except before and after sleep. Thanks, Paula!

    • Apologies for taking so long to respond, Maria. I had a dodgy internet connection at the camp site – probably because so many other people were logged on at the same time – so I’m dreadfully behind with replying to comments. 😵 Anyhow, I’m home now and very glad to be back in my own bed with a good book. 😊👍

  5. Goodness, Paula, what a wonderful selection of links. As for F1, Mr. K is a massive fan, so it does mean I get plenty of reading time while he’s glued to the screen… I am looking round at all the social media options right now, but a bit wary of Threads – apparently you can only get rid of it by deleting your whole IG account!!! 🙁

  6. We all know someone who’s a massive fan of F1 (our son’s one) but generally we don’t hold it against them, do we. Do we?! 😁 My eye was drawn instead to the link on H G Wells which I knew a little about, especially after reading a biography of Edith Nesbit, one of the founders of the Fabian Society – Wells was for a time a member and is supposed to have had an affair with Rosamund, Edith’s stepdaughter.

  7. Another wonderfully eclectic selection, Paula, I love the books (and their covers) in Lithub’s 26 books out in paperback this July. Also I found a similarity between Aussie author Helen Garner’s diary volumes, an account of a woman (Helen) fighting to hold on to a marriage with a writer that is disintegrating around her, and My Literary Breakup by writer Elisabeth Åsbrink once friends with controversial Swedish playwright Lars Norén. A case of writers writing what they know.

    Also, I attended a Silverstone motor cycle event British Grand Prix MotoGP way back in the Eighties because it was the mecca for Aussie motor bike fanatics (partner not me) and I remember the open track and being very close to the riders as they leaned in and took the hairpin curves. From the look of the official website, safety and glamour has been upgraded but seems just as noisy!

    • Thank you so much, Gretchen. Yes, Silverstone is quite impressive but extremely busy during the Grand Prix. I believe there were a record breaking 480,000 F1 fans through the gates this year. 🏁

      So glad you found this week’s links of interest. 😊👍

  8. But Paula, what book were you reading??!😂

  9. I really enjoyed reading Where Be Your Jibes Now? about DFW by Patrician Lockwood. Thanks!


  1. Book Twins: Two Novels of Dorothea Lange – Hopewell's Public Library of Life

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: