The reverse of last week’s question:
Imagine that everything is going just swimmingly. The sun is shining, the birds are singing, and all’s right with the world. You’re practically bouncing from health and have money in your pocket. The kids are playing and laughing, the puppy is chewing in the cutest possible manner on an officially-sanctioned chew toy, and in between moments of laughter for pure joy, you pick up a book to read . . .
Funnily enough, my choice of book when I'm feeling really good is much the same as my choice when I'm miserable. This is not the time for taking on a huge reading challenge, or a book which risks spoiling the mood. My solution - and this is where things get a bit obsessive - is to have a pile of books saved up that I am particularly looking forward to. For Christmas I will need to have at least 4 or 5 such to feel really secure, though they can be interspersed if necessary with some relatively run-of-the-mill detective novels - a bit of Agatha Christie or Dorothy Sayers, perhaps. This Christmas I shall try to have a Margery Allingham in the pile, probably the next in the Dresden Files series, and perhaps something new that's been highly recommended. Oh, and the last of the Soldier Son trilogy by Robin Hobbs is a contender this year, if I can wait until then. A couple of good cookery books and a really beautiful gardening book make excellent additions. Then I can curl up with a cup of Imperial Spice tea and a small brown dog, and enjoy.