On today’s top 10 Tuesday, from The Broke and the Bookish, is top ten books that I picked up/started reading on a whim, rather than researching first or reading based on a recommendation.
1. Title: Maisie Dobbs
Author: Jacqueline Winspear
Reason to include: Ah, Maisie- happy little surprise, beautiful encounter. I’m so engrossed in these books now and working my way through them.
2. Title: An Officer and a Spy
Author: Robert Harris
Reason to include: I knew this was historical fiction and the title sounded really interesting. This book didn’t disappoint!
3. Title: The Dress Shop of Dreams
Author: Menna van Praag
Reason to include: I know, I know. You’re not supposed to judge a book by its cover, but I saw this book and was immediately interested in it.
4. Title: Luncheon of the Boating Party
Author: Susan Vreeland
Reason to include: I knew this was about Renoir and his painting: Luncheon at the Boating Party. That’s all that I knew about it. This ended up being a captivating read about the creation of Renoir’s masterpiece and the people who populated it.
5. Title: The Spy Who Came in from the Cold
Author: John LeCarre
Reason to include: This is a book whose title has been in the background of my mind. I didn’t know what the book was about, but when I saw it, I decided to find out.
6. Title: Stardust
Author: Neil Gaiman
Reason to include: This is a modern fairytale, infused heavily with the elements of fantasy and magic. I didn’t know what the story was about before reading it.
7. Title: Empire Girls
Authors: Suzanne Hayes and Loretta Nyhan
Reason to include: I was intrigued by this title and the cover art. I knew that it was about girls in the 1920s, but that’s all that I knew. I found myself caring about these characters and the journey and friendship that developed.
8. Title: Jerusalem: The Biography
Author: Simon Sebag Montefiore
Reason to include: This book jumped out to me from the bookshelf. I’d not heard of it before, but it proved to be an in-depth examination of Jerusalem from ancient Jewish history to present day.
9. Title: The American West
Author: Dee Brown
Reason to include: I was in the history section of the bookstore, my most visited section. When I saw this book, I was drawn to it. I live in Ireland, but I’m American and much of my heritage played out on the western frontier.
10. Title: Notes from Underground
Author: Fyodor Dostdevsky
Reason to include: This was the first of the Russian classics that I read. After reading a history of Russia, I decided to read one of the classics and this is one that I randomly picked up. It was thought-provoking and engaging.