The Vegetarian: A Novel by Han Kang
When Yeong-hye suddenly decides to become a vegetarian (technically, vegan) and stop sleeping because of recurring nightmares, her husband doesn’t know what to think. Being vegetarian in South Korea is still uncommon, and her increasingly unsound behaviour drives her husband to acts of sexual sadism. An indelible South Korean novel about shame and desire, written in three acts. I read the first two acts in one go.
Forensics: The Anatomy of Crime by Val McDermid
Crime writer Val McDermid combines research, interviews with professionals and her own experience in this non-fiction book about the fascinating science of forensics. I went to the fantastic exhibition with the same name at the Wellcome Collection last year, but I didn’t get round to buying the book until now.
Cat’s Eye by Margaret Atwood
During a trip to her hometown, painter Elaine reflects on her teenage years and an abusive friendship which has haunted her for 40 years. A stream of conciousness novel exploring the unreliable nature of memory and the ever-changing nature of identity. My colleague surprise lent me this one. I’ve never read Atwood before so I’m really excited to read it.
The Idiot Brain: What Your Head Is Really Up To by Dean Burnett
Neuroscientist Dean Burnett explores the human brain and its imperfections. In this non-fiction book, he explains why our brains are seemingly sabotaging our lives in the most bizarre ways. I’ve got a ticket for a talk with Dean Burnett and Robin Ince about this book in May, so I figured I’d read it before then.
A is for Arsenic: The Poisons of Agatha Christie by Kathryn Harkup
Poison was Agatha Christie’s preferred murder method to kill off her characters, and the deadly substances were carefully chosen. This non-fiction book, written by research chemist Kathryn Harkup, celebrates Christie’s extensive chemical knowledge and use of science in her work. I’m deliberately taking my time reading this one.
Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides
Growing up in 70s Michigan, the narrator Calliope Stephanides has a unique family secret; having been born with both male and female genitalia. An inter-sex, family saga covering three generations of a Greek immigrant family in America. This novel has been in my to-read pile for ages so it’s about time I finally read it.
How about you? What are you currently reading?