October: cultural plans and TBR

Over the past few weeks writing (and reading!) posts has fallen by the wayside, as life has intervened: not only work, but helping get my eldest ready for university, some minor health woes and a very lovely trip to Venice with my mum.

October is gearing up to be another busy month, but I’m determined to get my act together this month, catch up and write up what I have seen, watched and read over the last few weeks, as it keeps it fresh in my mind, as well as hopefully giving others some ideas and helping to progress my project overall (to experience books, art, film, TV, food and music) from all over the world – for every country that it is feasible for me to do so: progress to date is mapped here.

Current reads are:

  • Dust by Kenyan author Yvonne Adhiambo Owuor (2014 novel).
  • Testament of Youth by Vera Brittain (1932 memoir of living through the First World War).
  • The Vanishing Half by Brit Bennett (2020 – read to complement my reading of Nella Larsen’s 1929 novel Passing.
    • A Short History of Tractors in Ukrainian by Marina Lewycka (2006 novel that I’m not enjoying at all – it’s not funny and it’s faintly offensive but I’ve got so far through it I may as well finish).
  • Slaughterhouse Five by Kurt Vonnegut (1969).

Books on my TBR for October:

  • Blonde by Joyce Carol Oates (to read ahead of watching the new movie adaptation).
  • Austerlitz by W. G. Sebald.
  • Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson (my daughter is doing this for GCSE, and I’ve meant to read it for years).
  • Small Things Like These by Clare Keegan (Booker shortlist and for book club).
  • The Faraway Nearby by Rebecca Solnit.
  • Kibogo by Scholastique Mukasonga (a Rwandan author I have read and reviewed in the past, and I’ve kindly been sent a review copy of her newly published novel by the people at Archipelago).


  • A trip to the Baltic Film Festival in London.
  • A cinema trip to see the new Bowie movie, Moonage Daydream.
  • A trip to the Fourth Plinth in Trafalgar Square to see the new work by Malawi-born artist Samson Kambulu.

Join the Conversation


  1. I recently read Slaughterhouse Five, my review should be up shortly. I look forward to hear what you make of Small Things…, Opposite most people I didn’t love it. Despite living around the corner from Trafalgar Square, i haven’t seen the fourth plint recently. Must rectify that.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I love the Vera Brittain, I’ve read it multiple times. Looking forward to your thoughts on The Vanishing Half, too. I’m having a big reading catch-up, have had to cull the ones I’d kept to read as only missing a few days and it’s suddenly impossible!

    Liked by 1 person

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