It’s the first Saturday of the month, which means it’s time for another Six Degrees of Separation hosted by Kate of Books are my Favourite and Best. The idea is that Kate chooses a book to use as a starting point and then we have to link it to six other books of our choice to form a chain. A book doesn’t have to be connected to all of the others on the list – only to the one next to it in the chain.
The first book this month is Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden. I have never read it, but I know it is set in Japan.
Thinking about other books I’ve read that are also set in Japan, the first one to come to mind is Shogun by James Clavell, but I prefer to only link to books that I have actually reviewed on my blog. My next choice, then, is The Shogun’s Queen by Lesley Downer. I really enjoyed this novel about Atsu, wife of the Shogun Tokugawa Iesada.
The Shogun’s Queen was part of a quartet of novels, although I still haven’t read the other three in the series. Another quartet of novels I have started (but not finished) is Johan Theorin’s Öland Quartet, which begins with Echoes from the Dead.
These four crime novels are all set on the Swedish island of Öland, which is a very atmospheric setting, and each book takes place in a different season. The other two I have read are The Darkest Room and The Quarry. I don’t often read Scandinavian crime fiction, but apart from the Theorin books, another that I enjoyed was Burned by Norwegian author Thomas Enger.
The main character in Burned, Henning Juul, is a journalist. Journalism makes me think of a book I read recently and loved – Dear Mrs Bird by AJ Pearce, about a young woman who dreams of becoming a Lady War Correspondent but finds herself typing up letters for the problem page instead.
For my next link, I thought of other books I’ve read with ‘bird’ in the title and decided on Birdcage Walk by Helen Dunmore. This was Dunmore’s last novel before her death and although the story is set in England, the French Revolution is played out in the background.
I have read quite a few novels about the French Revolution so I had plenty of options for the last book in my chain. The one I’m going to choose is A Tale of Two Cities, which, so far, is my favourite Charles Dickens novel.
So, that’s my chain for this month! From Japan to France via Sweden, Norway and England. Have you read any of these books?
Next month, the starting point will be The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver, yet another book I haven’t read!