In January this year, I started reading seriously again. I'd been reading books but without focus and felt that I hadn't really found anything to inspire me. This changed when quite by chance I took out "Dusty Answer" by Rosamund Lehmann from the library. I loved it and eagerly returned to find as many other books by her as possible, and reserved the rest; I read Rosamund Lehmann voraciously throughout January. But where next? I noticed that the copies I had had all been published by Virago, an imprint I'd come across when I'd discovered the works of Antonia White, a few years back. I reread the description of the imprint, and the desire to promote women's fiction, and realised that this was exactly what I needed to get myself reading more widely. It was easy enough to look along the library shelves and in charity shops for familiar green covers, and I discovered Elizabeth Taylor, Molly Keane, Winifred Holtby, and a whole host of others. I felt that I had finally got out of a stagnant reading pattern and was acquainting myself with books which were really worth reading.
As a fairly recent blogger, I admire the ability of bloggers to set themselves challenges. My challenge is so big that I've decided to set up a separate blog from my regular http://cardigangirlverity.blogspot.com. Verity's Virago Venture is a challenge I have set myself to read my way through the Virago Modern Classics and blog about them as I go. I've got a head start, I probably won't reread all of the ones that I've read before, but I will write about them in due course, but even if I read 1 VMC a week, it could take me up to 10 years to complete this challenge.
I can't afford to buy all of the titles, but I'll be on the look out for cheap charity shop copies, and hoping that my library can supply me with the rest. If anyone has spare, unwanted or duplicate Virago books that they would like to donate, then that would be wonderful. And if I end up with spares/duplicates then I will run some giveaways on the blog.
Some of the original green paperbacks have been printed; I'm hoping that I'll be able to note in each blog entry where I can find it out, the publishing history of the title, and include pictures.