Together in Spirit

An online reading group ('TIS a reading group!) to bring together friends, and friends of friends, who aren't able to be in a conventional reading group due to constraints of time or geography.

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Hello, from Helen Dyke

Having one or two technical difficulties but hopefully this will work. I'm Helen Dyke and I was at school with Emily (nee Helen Stoneham, Ruth!). I work as a speech therapist with deaf children and am married with a 16 month old son. I love to read, it is my number one hobby and I fit in as much reading as I can. Mostly I read 'lite' stuff such as chick-lit or thrillers but I like to tackle more serious novels when they come recommended. I haven't yet read A Suitable Boy but I will be after reading all your posts. Here are my top 5 in the order in which I discovered them.
1) To Kill a Mockingbird, Harper Lee. I read this at school and have re-read it many times since. I love the child's-eye view writing style.
2) Enigma, Robert Harris. I love all Harris' thrillers - he knocks Dan Brown into a cocked hat I think. Enigma is my favourite as I love the central characters and the wonderful evocation of Bletchley Park during the second world war.
3) Behind the Scenes at the Museum, Kate Atkinson. This is Atkinson's first novel. I've enjoyed all her books especially Case Histories which came out this year. This features in my top 5 because it's another child's-eye view narrative in which dark secrets from the past gradually unfold. It's also very funny.
4) Empty Cradles, Margaret Humphreys. A rare venture into non-fiction for me, this excellent book tells the stories of hundreds of children who were sent from this country to Australia during the '40's, '50's and '60's. Humphreys, a social worker, found out about them by accident and tells readers of her efforts to re-unite them with their families. A powerful and shocking book.
5) The Subtle Knife, Philip Pullman. I loved all the Dark Materials trilogy although I have a totally different world view to Pullman. The Subtle Knife is my favourite because I really like Will and his story and the inter-play between our world and the others he discovers in the book.

I look forward to reading more posts and some of your choices.