I recently had the opportunity to spend an hour in the science fiction bookshop and came home with a pile of books, among them a whole series by Robin Hobb – the Rain Wilds Chronicles. Now I can’t stop reading. This series is just as unputdownable as the ones I’ve read before. I am putting off household tasks, skimping on sleep, choosing the quickest dinners I can cook, saying no to the kids, so that I can go back to reading. I’ve come to realize I need to ration my reading so that other parts of my life don’t get completely neglected.

One of the things that I really like about Robin Hobb’s writing is her ability to hint at things to come and to build up anticipation. She builds it up gradually and subtly. She may start by just mentioning an idea or a concept in an aside, or perhaps a person who hasn’t been mentioned for a while. Then later she discreetly brings up the same idea from another angle. And you know it’s going to lead to something big, and you know it’s getting closer, and even though you have no idea what it is, you’re biting your nails while you’re waiting to get there.