My appalling hangover yesterday was interrupted by the arrival of a courier bearing a box of books from a certain huge publisher (initials H.C.). Which would be cool if I didn't know that this publisher's representative on earth (or at least in Ireland) always packs these boxes with the sort of books that I actively loathe, even if the publisher is currently publishing lots of books I would like. And so there is now a large box in my sitting room filled with lots of books about serial killers and religious conspiracies and some schmaltzy family sagas. There are also several of those horrible, horrible abused child memoirs, which I consider to be basically porn for people who enjoy other people's misery - the detail seems to be there purely for a weird sort of non-sexual titillation (just how bad can his mother be? How long did she leave him locked up in a cupboard? How many times a day did she beat him?).
So yes, it was a big box of crap, and it's yet another addition to the piles of terrible books that are threatening to take over my house. I know that I'm lucky to get lots of free books, but just think - for every new Sarah Waters novel, there are about 20 Da Vinci Code rip-offs. And of course, then there are the ostentatiously-clever-but-really-kind-of-hollow-and-unpleasant-look-i've-been-in-mcsweeney's novels, which are the sort of thing I might have read and been impressed by in the days before I got sent 20 new books a month and became a lot more intolerant of sub-standard, over-stylised emotionally dead writing.
And now I have to go and read the new Joanna Trollope (whom I hate as well, although Lord knows no one could accuse of her of being ostentatiously clever or over-stylised). Oh woe is me!