What Are You Reading Then?

What Are You Reading Then?

A Question of Books

What Are Reading Then? Directory

Welcome to “What Are You Reading Then?” This is a new features series concerning the books we read, the books we review, the books we buy and generally why we have bought them or read them. What we think … but equally it’s a bit of book fun with some topics and quizzes thrown in.

A Question of Books

You know, whilst l am somewhat new to eBooks in so far as l now have a slowly growing collection of eBooks on my iPad and in addition to all the conventional books l am reading from, and magazines and stories and articles, studying and blog reading, l read from said iPad and also from a Kindle – l am overrun with reading at present and that doesn’t seem to be showing any clear signs of stopping anytime soon.

I said to a friend last week that l am thriving on my reading at present … there just isn’t enough time in the day at present or indeed age and when l finally retire for the night  – l read and write in bed for about 15 minutes tops and l am out like a light. I think l do more of my effective reading in the toilet!

For this episode l have two topics l would like to both discuss and ask of the readership their views. First …


‘Conventional Books’.

As said l am starting to acquaint myself with the ease and efficiency of reading eBooks, but l still love reading what l class as conventional books, l am quite unsure if that is the right term, but just books, doesn’t seem to cut it these days … l have many ‘just books’  in the shelves behind me covering a host of eclectic topics and subjects from gardening,  to humour, dogs, military, nature, wildlife, cooking and trust me the list goes on – l love, no adore reading from as diverse a range as l can, as l feel you all do too.

However of the books l do have l have a few old books, that l really treasure not just for the content but because of the books themselves, the memories they cast back to me … the joys of recall as to how many times l have read them and smiled and laughed each time. The smell of them and the feel of the pages, the gentle weight in my hands and the thrill that awashes over me when l once more start to read a story l have read countless times afore this moment.

There is just something about old books. That same something when a reader discovers a new old bookshop, like that of an antique collector who discovers an older store where upon from floor to ceiling it is seemingly crammed with oddities and quirkies – the very same applies itself to an old bookstore.

It has the scents of yesterdays and yesteryears trapped in the very shelves. There are secrets aplenty to be found in the old tomes of an old book store and it’s been years since l have found one that brings back sweet memories from the times as a young reader to a teenager back in the late 70’s and 80’s for me of course.

I remember many years ago  -1982, discovering at a jumble sale held by the local scout group in an old village hall an original copy of The Hunchback of Notre Dame in original French no less and purchased it for 5 pence. It was literally a first cover edition from 1831 and held hand written notes from Victor Hugo. I sold it in 1997 for an astonishing figure, but l was duped, had l realised l could have sold it apparently for ten times the price l got – however l was happy as it had only cost me 5 pence 15 years previously and had sat on a shelf for all of those years.

These days l don’t have many old books, not as old as 1831 but l have two that will travel with me to my grave with my bear clan and they are just as sweet and dear to me as my teddies. They are Enid Blyton’s Bimbo and Topsy printed 1969 – it’s one of the originals l have and the other book also an original published in 1972 is Smoky Joe, The Fish Eater by John O’Grady these are both such charming books that l love reading over and over again.

Bimbo and Topsy are still in their original cover, sadly however Smoky Joe’s cover suffered at the teeth of a skunk and had to be thrown away [you can see slight damage at the lower right of the book still] … but of all the books l possess, these two are both significantly and distinctly my two favourites. 

Both have charming stories, one about a puppy and a kitten who got into all sorts of trouble and mischief and the other about a kitten that grew to be a magnificent cat indeed who loved fish. I have read all of Enid Blyton’s books and loved the magical fantasy of The Magic Faraway Tree and l have also read all of John O’Grady’s work – both authors are long gone now, but their published words live on.

These are my favourite old books, how about you? What old books do you have that you still love to read all these years on?

The Book Reader’s Question

I know many of you write Reviews on books you have read and publish them to your blogs. I hope to be joining that style of writing soon enough in my own quirky way, but the question today is how often do you write a review when you have purchased a book from an online platform on the platform itself – as an example ‘Amazon Kindle?’

How did you learn to write a review in the first place? Was it something that came naturally to you?  When you are writing a review what points are you looking to cover? Do you write a summary only of the content?

Many questions indeed, but if you could answer each, that would be great.

Let me know below in the comments section or should you wish create a post, be sure to drop me a link – so l can read your reading list too!

However, catch you next episode – thanks for reading – Rory

A Guy Called Bloke Banner What Are You Reading Then JPEG

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11 thoughts on “What Are You Reading Then?

  1. These are all thought-provoking questions and issues you discuss here. I don’t own any physical books other than the one book I contrbuted to in 2015 and was sent a physical copy of in exchange for my contribution. I much prefer eBooks in various formats (Kindle, Apple Books, etc.). As for writing a review on the actual site I purchsed them from, I never do that and hardly ever review books on Goodreads either. I find them too hard to use.

  2. Book reviewing is an art, isn’t it? I couldn’t do a decent book review if my life depended on it – I read them all the time (there are book reviews everyday in my local newspaper) but when I attempt them myself, all I can come up with is “You should read this book” – I’m not good at writing a summary of the plot for starters.

  3. I don’t have any of my treasures from youth. They all got lost when I was homeless, sleeping in my car. I’ve gone through several sets of LOTR and King’s “Dark Tower” series. I adore paper books for all the reasons you listed and still get paper books from a few favorite authors.

    I do leave reviews on Amazon etc. I just write what I liked about the book with some general info about the story. I wouldn’t say I’m especially good at writing them, but they help the self publishing especially.

  4. I only read paperback and hardcover books. Tried reading eBooks on my iPad for a while but gave up. Found that if I have the opportunity to check mails or just browse the web a few taps on my iPad away I’m lost. I have too many books right now, time for some clean up. They’re literally scattered everywhere in my flat. Have found one childhood book that I immediately stored in one of the bookcases. Older books that I will probably never read agian but hang onto are The Comedians (Graham Green) and Tales of the Bengal Tiger and To the coral strand (John Masters). Sentimental value…
    I do not write reviews. Nor do I read them.Generally ask people I like what they’re reading and why.

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