The biggest problem with having a Kindle is you collect books and never get round to reading them. At least when you buy books in real life you notice that the unread pile of books is taller than the read stack. So after the excesses of my birthday and Christmas I realised my unread book pile needed to be tackled.
One of the first books I read this year was Hercule Poirot’s Christmas, one of the last book splurges of 2013 was on several Agatha Christie books which were part of an Amazon winter deal. Despite watching David Suchet’s Poirot television series for years and knowing some of the stories inside out I had never read the books.
I have found with detective novels I prefer to just read the books as if I was a fly on the wall and take in all the little details, rather than try and figure out who did it. This always means that the ending of the book is a bit of a surprise because I don’t fully join all the dots. Poirot is a fun character though, and I enjoy him most when he is sparking with other characters.
PG Wodehouse was another author whose work I had never read so I initiated myself with one of the Blandings novels. Something Fresh is the first Blandings novel and follows the disappearance of a special scarab. The book was a fun caper and I am looking forward to reading more of the Blandings novels.
The book which had the most impact on me this month was probably Hatching Twitter by Nick Bilton. The book follows the story of Twitter and the four founders; Ev Williams, Jack Dorsey, Biz Stone and Noah Glass.
Image of Hatching Twitter from Penguin/Portfolio
After reading Hatching Twitter I’m not completely sure if I like the idea behind the company, the way it operates and the people who started it. All four founders squabbled over who started it, and the coups and plotting to get a new CEO didn’t sound pretty either. The book did give an interesting insight into how start-up companies work and what it is like for them to transition into huge, global businesses.
If the rise of Twitter seems strange to you, the book demonstrated just how odd the rise of Twitter was for the founders. There are excellent stories of the politicians and celebrities who stop by the Twitter offices as well as being approached by ex Vice President Al Gore to buy the site.
What am I reading in February?
I also began reading The Three Musketeers by Alexandre Dumas in anticipation of the BBC series. However, it was a bit more hard going than I expected so it will have to be a book that will take a few months to read and enjoy.
Into February I am already reading another book which I am surprised I haven’t already — To Kill A Mockingbird. I am already astounded by the understanding of the world through this one school girl in the American Deep South. I’m also loving every page of Rae Earl’s My Madder Fatter Diary and expect I’ll easily get through it this weekend.
When I’ve got my way through more books that I’ve had good intentions to read I’m going to start pestering for recommendations in order to complete that check list of books I really should have read by now.