What shall I read on my holidays?

At this time of year, I always have the same dilemma – what books to take on holiday? I usually go for paperbacks for space/weight reasons, but this year I suspect I may have to break that rule. I've just ordered The Rule Book by Rob Kitchin from Amazon (as a result of enjoying his excellent blog From the Blue House), which seems to be a hardback. And via Twitter and the lovely Transworld account, I think I may be lucky enough to be in line for a copy of Joel Theorin's second novel, The Darkest Room, in which case that is going in my suitcase as well.

I've recently purchased paperbacks (phew!) by Michael Robotham– The Night Ferry and Shatter – on the basis of blog reviews and online discussion. I've also just received Katharine Howell's second novel, The Darkest Hour, thanks to the kind offices of CrimeFiction Reader (It's a Crime) and the publisher, Macmillan.

This is not going to keep me going for the whole duration, so any further suggestions, particularly of translated fiction, are very welcome – so long as suitable for holiday reading.

10 thoughts on “What shall I read on my holidays?

  1. Maxine have you read the Marek Krajewski , K.O.Dahl, Boris Akunin, Leif Davidsen or John Lawton and Lawrence Block [the last two untranslated of course] ? I can’t remember if you have.
    I have read so many authors on your recommendation that it is like taking coals to Newcastle for me to advise you, but those authors are all good. None of them even Krajewski are as dark as The Sinner;o). So suitable for holiday reading.
    I have been privileged to be sent a copy of Rob Kitchin’s book via the good offices of Declan Burke. I think Dec is convinced I am really Salman Rushdie and will provide a good blurb. I am looking forward to reading Rob’s novel a good serial killer will be light relief after The Sinner, you did warn me!! :o)

  2. Of course the real question is what makes good holiday reading? Light? Dark? Long? Short?
    A fairly light and fairly short but (for me) highly amusing read is Jincey Willet’s THE WRITING CLASS. It’s probably not quite crime fiction (or translated) but there is a mystery and loads of interesting characters. I loved the sense of humour of the main character who is a writer who had one great novel and now teaches at an adult evening college and is…disgruntled about it. Kerrie didn’t like it quite so much as I did but I get a sense from your reviews and blog that you and I have a more similar sense of humour so I think you would like it and it’s a year or so old now so should be available in paperback.
    I seem to like to read thrillers while I am on hols so I’d probably recommend THE FIFTH VILE by Michael Palmer (who writes like Robin Cook without the constant sermon-giving, wooden dialogue and pompousness) or how about GOD’S SPY by Juan Gomez-Jurado (at least it counts as translated) which is a marvellously conspiracy-theory laden tale that takes place in the Vatican.

  3. Oh and I should have asked where you are going. And I am shocked and offended that you would query my intentions – of course I am not asking as a prelude to arranging the book-napping of your copy of the second Theorin novel.

  4. Forgot, enjoy your holiday and have a good rest from the exhaustion of London’s transport system.

  5. Unless you should have an unread Indridason on your shelf, I am not sure I can recommend any translated. I checked a good Norwegian and Danish author, but none of them has hit the English market yet. I will review them when they do, of course.
    What about Ann Cleeves, The Crow Trap? I would really like to hear what you think about Vera Stanhope.
    Enjoy your holiday!

  6. Thanks for all the suggestions (especially Henry 😉 ).
    Berndadette, I totally forgot to write in my post, sorry, that I also purchased The Calling by Inger Ashe Wolfe for my hols, purely on the basis of your excellent review. http://reactionstoreading.wordpress.com/2009/07/07/review-the-calling-by-inger-ash-wolfe/
    Thank you (especially as it turns out to be a quite small paperback).
    Also thanks for reminding me of Michael Palmer – I read all his books as each one came out up to a few years ago, but in those days did not log, so have forgotten which I’ve read. If the one you recommend is a newish one, I won’t have read it, so will check out.
    I am off to the USA, but am too ashamed to say where in public!
    Thanks all for your lovely comments. I am not going just yet so expect one or two more posts before I depart.
    Norman – I have at least one by all of your suggestions on my stack (and have read The Serbian Dane by Leif Davidsen on Karen Meek’s recommendation).
    Dorte – yes, I’ve read all of Indridason so far in English, sadly. (the next one will be out in the autumn so will look forward to it then). However, The Crow Trap is a great suggestion as I have that on my shelf, and it too is a PB.

  7. Might you be heading to Las Vegas or Disneyworld/Land? My parents (minus us children who are in any case adult) went to both Vegas and Florida, include Mouseland, on their US trip last year and had a blast, so I don’t think there’s anywhere too humiliating to confess to!
    Not sure how much translated crime I can recommend since I read in the wrong language, but have you read the anthology Crimini edited by de Cataldo? Well worth a look. (And it’s paperback…)
    The art-theft series by Iain Pears (in English) would make for great holiday reading – just look for the artwork in the title. (Giotto’s Hand, The Bernini Bust etc.) And you won’t go too far wrong if you read them in the wrong order.
    My strategy for holiday reading is usually to find the longest thing going, since I read so fast. At least you’ll have access to bookshops in the US. Have a good trip!

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