Bookshelf Travelling in Insane Times

Bookshelf Travelling in Insane Times is a meme which was started by Judith at Reader in the Wilderness and it has turned out to be a really useful tour around my own books, often books that I’ve forgotten that I had even bought and haven’t got around to reading. However this week my shelf is almost full of books that I’ve already read, in fact some of my favourite books reside on this shelf and I really like all the authors. Click the photo to enlarge it.


I loved Olivia Manning’s Balkan trilogy Fortunes of War and went on to read her Levant trilogy too. You can read what I thought about Fortunes of War here. I see that I read it back in 2010 in my very early blogging days – how time flies.

Men Do Not Weep by Beverly Nichols is one of only two books on this shelf that I haven’t read, apparently it’s a political book which was published in 1941 so it should be interesting. He’s better known for the books that he wrote based on his life, buying houses and making them into homes for himself with especial interest in planning the garden. There’s quite a lot of snooty wit involved in his writing. The series which begins with Down the Garden Path is a good place to start if you’re interested in reading his books. It was first published in 1932 so it’s a real blast from the past, for me these are real comfort reads. You can see my thoughts on some of his books here.

Pied Piper by Nevil Shute is the other book that I haven’t got around to reading yet. I think it’s the fact that it’s a very old paperback that has put me off from reading it. Having just read the blurb again it sounds like it’s right up my street. The setting is France in 1940.

John Howard, a retired country solicitor, holidaying in the Jura mountains, is persuaded to escort two English children home to safety.

Helped by the stubbornness and the patience of old age, hindered by the addition of another five waifs and strays, he makes his way across a crumbling and defeated France.

Have any of you read this one, if so tell me what you thought of it?

10 thoughts on “Bookshelf Travelling in Insane Times

  1. I read Pied Piper in January, it was my first book of the year and a great way to start off. I think I read the whole thing in a single day, I loved it. I also loved The Balkan Trilogy and The Levant Trilogy, though I wanted to throw something at Guy Pringle!

    And I love your collection of Beverley Nichols, I haven’t read him yet but keep hearing about him on the blogosphere. Might have to track down Sunlight on the Lawn for Simon’s 1956 Club in October!

    • Karen K,
      I’m going to begin reading Pied Piper tonight. I know exactly what you mean about Guy Pringle! I enjoyed watching the TV series.

      Thanks for reminding me about the 1956 Club in October, I’ll have to see what I have that fits the bill.

  2. Pied Piper is one of the books on my list for this week’s Classics Club Spin, so if I get that one we can compare thoughts. It does sound good.

  3. I want to read Olivia Manning’s Balkan Trilogy but have not gotten any of the books yet. I recently purchased A Town Like Alice by Shute and that will be only my second book by him.

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