March Update

9   books reviewed in March.
37  books reviewed in total.
964 books to go.

Another month gone and we are now a quarter of the way through the year.  Here in the Southern hemisphere we are heading into our colder months.  So instead of sitting out on the back porch or lounging at the beach getting our daily fix of vitamin D with a good book, we will be snuggling near a heater or fire, with our hot beverage of choice getting lost with some of our favourite authors.  Ahhhh, both blissful scenarios indeed.

We had four new reviewers contribute this month.  Sweetp reviewed both Middlesex, an intriguing tale of a hermaphrodite and the Sci-fi classic The War of the Worlds.  Hayley reviewed Oscar Wilde’s eerie The Picture of Dorian Gray, where a young man discovers that a painting of him ages and allows him to stay young.  Ange, of Tall, Short and Tiny gave us the review of Possesion, a time-crossing mystery with some romance thrown in.  And Beth from Beth’s List Love   gave us the last review of the month; Fateless, the story of a Jewish teen during World War 2.

Our co-editor Ms. Oh Waily has been very busy this month.  She gave us three reviews for three very different books;  the post-apocalyptic The Day of the Triffids, the satirical A Confederacy of Dunces with the main character she describes as “medievalist, crazy man” and our first foray into Russian literature with Tolstoy’s The Death of Ivan Ilyich.  And finally, inspirationalreads was impressed by the short tale of a french silkworm merchant’s travels to Japan in Silk.

This months list suggestions has been inspired by Beth’s List Love, who has undertaken an Around the World reading challenge; 52 books from or based in 52 different countries.  We have broken it up into the different continents and found some from the list for each.


  • The Poisonwood Bible – Barbara Kingsolver (Congo)
  • Slow Man – J.M. Coetzee (South Africa)
  • Petals of Blood – Ngugi Wa Thiong’o (Kenya)
  • Nervous Conditions – Tsitsi Dangarembga (Zimbabwe)
  • Arrow of God – Chinua Achebe (Nigeria)
  • Things Fall Apart – Chinua Achebe (Nigeria)
  • Islands – Dan Sleigh (South Africa)
  • July’s People – Nadine Gordimer (South Africa)

The Americas

  • Disapearance – David Dabydeen (Guyana)
  • The Feast of the Goat – Mario Vargos Llosa (Peru)
  • Unless – Carol Shields (Canada)
  • Labyrinths – Jorg Luis Borges (Argentina)
  • Love in the Time of Cholera – Gabriel García Márquez (Colombia)
  • The House of the Spirits – Isabel Allende (Chile)
  •  Tent of Miracles – Jorge Amado (Brazil)
  • The Devil and Miss Prym – Paulo Coelho (Brazil)
  • Delta of Venus – Anaïs Nin (Cuba)
  • Like Water for Chocolate – Laura Esquivel (Mexico)
  • Jazz – Toni Morrison (USA)
  • The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn – Mark Twain (USA)


  • Wild Swans – Jung Chang (China)
  • Rashomon – Akutagawa Ryunosuke (Japan)
  • Kafka on the Shore – Haruki Murakami (Japan)
  • The Sea of Fertility – Yukio Mishima (Japan)
  • Memoirs of a Geisha – William Golden (Japan)
  • The Sea of Fertility – Yukio Mishima (Japan)
  • The God of Small Things – Arundhati Roy (India)
  • Small Remedies – Shashi Deshpande (India)
  • A Suitable Boy – Vikram Seth (India)
  •  Midnight’s Children – Salman Rushdie (India)
  • Land – Park Kyong-ni (South Korea)


  • The Colour – Rose Tremain (New Zealand)
  • Faces in the Water – Janet Frame (New Zealand)
  • The Garden Party – Katherine Mansfield (New Zealand)
  • Voss – Patrick White (Australia)
  • The Living and the Dead – Patrick White (Australia)
  • Under the Skin – Michel Faber (Australia)


  • Broken April – Ismail Kadare (Albania)
  • Old Masters – Thomas Bernhard (Austria)
  • The Sorrow of Belgium – Hugo Claus (Belgium)
  • As If I Am Not There – Slavenka Drakulic (Croatia)
  • Smilla’s Sense of Snow – Peter Høeg (Denmark)
  • The Summer Book – Tove Jansson (Finland)
  • Platform – Michael Houellebecq (France)
  •  Fateless – Imre Kertész (Hungary)
  • Chaireas and Kallirhoe – Chariton (Greece)
  • If On a Winter’s Night a Traveler – Italo Calvino (Italy)
  • Hunger – Knut Hamsun (Norway)
  • The Double – José Saramago (Portugal)
  • The People of Hemsö – August Strindberg (Sweden)
  • Julie; or, the New Eloise – Jean-Jacques Rousseau (Switzerland)
  • The Hour of the Star – Clarice Lispector (Ukraine)
  • The Monk – M.G. Lewis (England)
  • Trainspotting – Irvine Welsh (Scotland)
  • The Talk of the Town – Ardal O’Hanlon (Ireland)

Again, if you feel we have left out a book of particular note, please let us know.  We would love to see more entries for Australasia/Oceania (being Kiwis ourselves) and some from smaller countries as well.

Looking forward to seeing what reviews April brings us.  Happy reading!


One thought on “March Update

  1. Beth Parks Aronson April 2, 2012 / 4:30 am

    Glad to have inspired this list! I love the 52 countries challenge for getting me out of my England/Canada/US rut. I have discovered remarkable authors in my world tours for the last 2 years.

    I just finished the Thousand and One Nights and am about to start an Oceania read: Faces in the Water. I should have a review for the latter in a few days, and the other just went up.

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