Personal Updates,  Random

Readings of Lately

Before I posted my Dolores Redondo review last week I realised that it had been a month since I had last written anything for the blog. I realised that a few weeks had gone by pretty quickly, mostly reading and writing and trying to read and write a bit more for the blog. However, I just ended up reading lots, and writing lots… for my PhD. My reading patterns have been erratic to say the least, with Saturday afternoon binge-reading sessions, and less than 15 minutes devoted to reading from Monday to Friday. The fact that I love crime fiction but have decided to make a job of my passion is not helping either, as I usually find myself looking for a non-crime read during the evenings. So, here’s what I’ve been trying to do:

I visit my local library every week browsing the Spanish literature section in search for my next read. I am not well-read in Spanish literature. Actually, I’m not well-read in Spanish at all. Even though I have read some feminist classics such as Nada by Carmen Laforet and Las edades de Lulú by Almudena Grandes I can’t really think of more books that I would enjoy (recommendations VERY  welcome!). Last week I borrowed Isabel Allende’s La casa de los espíritus (The House of the Spirits) in an attempt to discover Latin American magical realism and I miserably failed at reading the book. Or even opening it. I’m giving it another try in a week.

Also from the local library I am giving a try to best-sellers in English – now translated into Spanish – that I am not sure I would enjoy. After learning a bit about romance from C, a professor that I connect with during my degree, and from Wallace Yovetich from Book Riot, I decided to give romance a try. I thought it would be a good exercise to try to separate what I have been conditioned to enjoy as woman in patriarchal society and my feminist awakening. I borrowed L.S. Hilton’s Maestra and as I write this, I’m considering returning it to the library…

For my PhD I have been reading American crime fiction and crime fiction theory, as well as working on a few articles and projects which I’ll share in due time.

So, this is what’s been going on behind the silence of the blog. I hope I get to reading crime fiction soon, and meanwhile it is lots of TV, walking the Puppy and sleeping in my little free time.



  • MarinaSofia

    Don’t beat yourself up about that, we all go through occasional droughts of reading and inspiration. It will come back, once you’ve completed the Ph. D. and have a change of scenery.

    • Elena

      I hope so! I started reading Isabel Allende last night and I’m loving it. Changing the language in which I read is proving quite helpful for now…

  • aidagm

    I liked La casa de los espíritus, but If you really want to discover magical realism you should read Cien años de soledad (A Hundred Years of Solitude) by Gabriel García Márquez. But maybe now it’s not the right time for you to read it, so you might want to try Como agua para chocolate (Like Water for Chocolate) by Laura Esquivel. I think I like it better than Isabel Allende’s and it is shorter. Apart from magical realism you could try Los renglones torcidos de dios by Torcuato Luca de Tena. I read it a looong time ago but I remember I was really hooked.

    • Elena

      Thing is, I don’t think I like magical realism. Some people have told me that Kate Atkinson is magical realism, so I should like Isabel Allende. I don’t know. I borrowed El amante japonés from the library because it’s lighter, and I think reading Allende’s latest work before La casa de los espíritus could I’m less inclined to misjudge her recent novels. We’ll see…

  • JacquiWine

    Have you ever tried anything by Javier Marias? I love the way he uses those long, looping sentences to pull the reader into his work. If you’ve never read him, then I would recommend either The Man of Feeling, or one of his best-loved novels, A Heart So White.

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