My July Reading - remembering a fellow reader

Author: Anne

Date Published: Aug 1st 2018, 6:12pm

During the month of July our reviewer Bill Stilling died. Bill hadn’t reviewed for a while because of ill health but there are 66 of his reviews on the site. Bill particularly enjoyed thrillers, science fiction and adventure stories and he liked his books without gratuitous violence and with very little or no sex. He also had a tendency to prefer books by male writers. Favourite authors include Isaac Asimov, Alistair McLean, Robert Heinlein, Arthur C Clarke, Frederick Forsyth and Jack Higgins.

What Bill did in his later years, however, was to try and read some great classics because he felt that he might have missed out. His reviews include “To Kill a Mocking Bird”, “Gone with the Wind”, “Dracula”, “Vanity Fair” and “Moll Flanders” which are very different from his usual reading diet but which he appeared very much to enjoy. He was less keen on “Catch 22” and “Brideshead Revisited”. I don’t know if he ever finished his list but I do know that it kept on growing every time he thought of a new one or someone mentioned one he hadn’t thought of.

Bill introduced me to his choice of books from a very early age and the first I really remember reading of his is a collection of the Sherlock Holmes stories by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle which I read and reread and still enjoy today. He was happy to lend his books and to buy me the books I wanted. even if they were different from his choice. He used to like to discuss the books he read and I know that he told lots of people about how many books I read each year which he claimed to be amazed at, although I think he read a fair few himself. Bill thought reading was important and he thought it was important that those who wanted to had access to books. He used the library and also borrowed ebooks to read electronically. He enjoyed sharing his views in his reviews and blogs.

Bill was my father and I will miss him but every time I pick up a book it is part of his legacy. He helped to engender in me and to encourage a lifelong love of books which has enriched my life and expanded my horizons – I think that it did the same for him.




So sorry to hear about your dad this is a lovely way to honour and remember him