Vacation Reading

summer reading

Happy Monday to one and all.

I’m returning from a week of vacation, so I’m grappling with reality and finding it a bit difficult today.  Fortunately, I have a plan – during my lunch hour, I’ll be continuing one of the books I started on vacation.  I’m very much hoping that will help me pretend I’m still soaking up the sun and relaxing.

I seriously overestimated the amount of reading time I would have on this vacation.  I checked five books out of the library, borrowed two e-books on my Nook, and packed another book that’s been sitting on my TBR pile for a few months that I really wanted to read.  Guess how many books I read?

One.  I read Elizabeth Peter’s book The Mummy Case since Miss Gwen gave me such a feeling of nostalgia for Amelia Peabody.  I think Amelia and Miss Gwen would both scold my for my lack of focus.

The other book that I started, and that I hope to pick up again today, is Ross Poldark by Winston Graham.  I will readily confess that I had never heard of this book until I started seeing ads for the new TV series.  According to several reviewers, it can assist with Downton Abbey withdrawal symptoms and it should appeal to those of us who love an enigmatic hero.  I also follow Laurel Ann Nattress (the editor of Jane Austen Made Me Do It, an anthology of Jane-inspired short stories with an entry from our friend Lauren Willig) on her blog and Twitter, and she was so enthused about the book and the TV series that she made me want to give them a try!  I haven’t watched any of the series yet, but I’m about a third of the way through the book, and I’m definitely enjoying it.  Ross has a decidedly North-and-South Mr. Thornton thing going on.  I approve of this.  Have any of you read the book, or any of the others in the Poldark series?  Are you watching it on PBS?  Can you tell me (without spoilers!) how you like it?

If Poldark is not on your radar, what are you reading on your summer vacations?

27 thoughts on “Vacation Reading

  1. I’ve been watching Poldark, and I’ve got my husband hooked as well. I’ve really enjoyed it so far. Not having read the book, this is my first introduction to it. I also watched Wolf Hall while it was running on Masterpiece. I’m curious to know how the love triangle will end. I agree that he does have some of Mr. Thorton about him.

  2. My “Summer Vacation” where I might be able to actually do some reading doesn’t come until September (when I get to go camping for a week, at a mountain lake… I’m totally going to be splitting my time between reading and writing and playing in the lake and biking down the trails like I did when I was a kid), so I am going to just sit here and take everybody else’s vacation reads to add to my list 🙂

  3. Mmm, yes, Poldark. It’s just continuing my love of Aidan Turner, which began years ago. It’s so addictively good! Amazing first series, can I have the new one already? I know they just started filming, but I need more!

  4. As I think I’ve mentioned before, I’ve been reading the Poldark series since the mid-1990s. I was a student in Edinburgh and haunted the charity (thrift) shops in search of fiction since I couldn’t afford new books and they seemed to be everywhere. And I fell in love with the characters, who still feel like real people to me, and with their world, which is incredibly detailed in its depiction.

    Without giving any major plot points away, they are an interesting series to read because the first one was published in 1945 and the last one in 2002 and there were some long stretches between the publication of the fourth and fifth books and the seventh and eighth books. The fifth book picks up almost immediately after the close of the fourth book but there’s a ten year book chronology gap between the seventh and eighth books. I love the first seven and like the last five, though the tenth and eleventh come the closest to the feel of the earlier books.

    As to the television series, the one from the 1970s is worth taking a look at as well. Some of the plot points meander from the original books but nearly every character either seems exactly as I pictured them or, in the case of Demelza, is so vividly realized that Demelza as I picture her and Angharad Rees’ Demelza exist in my mind almost simultaneously. The scenery in the current one is gorgeous, but very few of the characters feel right to me, though I’m planning to keep watching.

    • Someone who also saw the 1970’s version of Poldark (I did not) said she was disappointed that Demelza looks like a model.

      • In the current series she looks like a model, that is. 🙂 I can’t be trusted to operate my kindle keyboard properly and hit reply too soon.

      • I don’t think she looks like a model. She’s pretty, but it’s her acting that is amazing. Totally hired for talent not looks. Seriously, she deserves an Emmy.

      • I enjoy her, also. I did not see the original production and I haven’t read the books. I think she is fabulous.

      • Favorite book? I’m not sure I have one but I like books five, six and seven best. Ross and Demelza’s marriage goes through a fair amount of turbulence (and that is not really a spoiler because that’s true for much of the series), but there is also the deepening love between them. Book five also introduces my favorite Poldark male character and if the current series makes it that far, I will be very curious to see who they cast in that role.

        But there’s a certain glimmer to the first book, particularly when catching pilchards!

  5. I went away for an overnight trip and brought so much to read that it was ridiculous! I brought 5 paperbacks, a hardcover, and a fully loaded Kindle. Plus, I grabbed a magazine on the way out that had come in the mail. Seriously.

    I haven’t read Poldark, yet, but I want to now because of the show.I do like it but, as my daughter says, I feel a bit as if there were a first season to it and I have just started watching beginning with the second season-like I am missing some background information.

    I read Anna Lee Huber’s A Study in Death. I just finished Ever After by Jude Deveraux, because for me…Jude! I cannot get enough of her Montgomerys and Taggerts. She is my comfort read. On my Kindle I also just finished The Mayfair Affair-hooray for Teresa Grant! I totally cheated and read that before some of the earlier books in the series that I have in my waiting to be read collection.

    I have so many books waiting that I want to read next! A Desperate Fortune is one.

    • Paige, you and I have the same summer reading list. I’ve got ALH’s new release on my pile as well as A Desperate Fortune. I can’t believe it has taken me so long to get to them… Mayfair Affair was excellent, but Vienna Waltz and Imperial Scandal are my favorites of the series by far.

  6. My husband and I are watching Poldark and really loving it. We watched Wolf Hall as well.
    Have not read any of the Poldark books.
    Finished Karen White’s The Sound of Glass and an ARC of Grace Burrowes Tremaine’s True Love. Loved both.
    Plan to start Lauren’s book next weekend….:)

  7. Ashley, did my publisher send you an Advanced Readers Copy of my book THE SECRET LIFE OF ANNA BLANC? ( Not in bookstores until November 3rd) As a Bubblebath follower, I really want you to read it because it’s such a bubble bath read. It’s a historical mystery that’s romantic and funny, set in 1907 Los Angeles among the police matrons of the LAPD. It’s won contests, etc. Let me know if you got it, and if you didn’t, if you’d like a copy. Here’s the Goodread link so you can see some early reviews.

  8. My husband and I loved the original Poldark series, which has sorta spoiled us for this one since we know the plot. Which is probably why I am distracted by two things: I hate Ross’s hair, and we have started counting how many times the horse runs back and forth. It is a lovely production, great atmosphere and scenery.

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