Reading Multiple Books at Once

I didn’t really get into reading until 2007, which is quite a shame as I missed several years of life where I could have been reading great books. When I did get into it, I liked to try and have two books on the go at once. At the time, I always had one Doctor Who book and one non-Doctor Who book. Since there are so many Doctor Who novels, I thought this was a good way to read them without neglecting all other literature. The problem I had was that when I was reading two books at once, I’d always end up favouring one over the other. Having two books on the go almost always meant that one got neglected, so I decided to stick to a one book at a time. Until now.

These days, I actually have three books on the go. I have one physical book (The Poe Shadow by Matthew Pearl), one e-book on my Kindle (Anno Dracula by Kim Newman) and one e-book on my Nintendo 3DS (Les Miserables by Victor Hugo) and I really like it. What excites me is that they’re all set within the 19th century (even if one is supposed to be an alternate history) and two of them deal with events in France. Les Miseables is, of course, a story which documents the lives of several unfortunate people living in France who’s circumstances always seem to hold them back. One part of the book is a detailed account of the Battle of Waterloo and features Napoleon Bonaparte as a character. The Poe Shadow, meanwhile, features a lawyer who wishes to investigate the death of Edgar Allen Poe and so goes to France to track down the real life version of C. Auguste Dupin (a detective in Edgar Allen Poe’s work) and the novel includes other members of the Bonaparte family. Meanwhile, Anno Dracula features several characters from the Sherlock Holmes stories and, of course, Sherlock Holmes draws heavily from C. Auguste Dupin (to the extent that he mentions it himself.)

By reading three books at once, I’m made aware of the things that connect them all. I love stories from the nineteenth century (or which are just set during it) and there’s a level of enjoyment which I’m getting from reading which I wouldn’t get under other circumstances.

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