Wednesday, November 25, 2009

What's on my nightstand

I've been having trouble keeping up my reading pace these past several months. Is it just that I do not have the right books on my nightstand?

New Stories from the South 2008 - ZZ Packer, ed.
The Hunger Games - Suzanne Collins
The White Queen - Philippa Gregory
Something Incredibly Wonderful Happened: Frank Oppenheimer and the World He Made Us - K.C. Cole
That Old Cape Magic - Richard Russo
The Heart of a Child - Patti Brady
Firefly Lane - Kristen Hannah

I'm about half-way through the Russo book. I tried to start both the Collins and Gregory books, respectively too depressing and not my favorite English time period. The others I haven't started.

What are YOU reading that I should be reading? :-)

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Babs' Five Favorite Reads of All-time (so far)

The beautiful thing about favorite reads is that they do not have to be anything but that; they don't have to be best-sellers or classics or award winners. Just favorites

Little Women by Louisa May Alcott - I received this as a gift, in beautiful hard copy, the Christmas after I turned 10. I love this book! It's lost its dust jacket along the way, but I still have the same copy, from my Aunt Ruth in 1983.

Gone with the Wind by Margaret Mitchell - I wanted to be Scarlett O'Hara when I was growing up. And I always thought Vivien Leigh and my Aunt Kim shared a resemblance, so I thought it could be in the family. ;-)

Inferno by Dante Alighieri - An utterly, fascinating, amazing read. When I was a child, I dreamed of reading it in the original Italian, on the opposite page from the English in my copy.

The Fountainhead by Ayn Rand - Yeah for Howard Roark! Introduced me to the objectivist philosophy - happiness as moral purpose - being the facet I liked the most. ;-)

Don Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes - Hilarious and idealistic - "One man, scorned and covered with scars still strove with his last ounce of courage to reach the unreachable stars; and the world was better for this." One of my favorite quotes of all time, and seriously, brings a tear to my eye every time I read it.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

My June Reads

Hmmm . . . I may not have logged all of my books last month, but this is what I have:

Julie and Julia: 365 Days, 524 Recipes, 1 Tiny Apartment Kitchen by Julie Powell
Bento Box in the Heartland: My Japanese Girlhood in Whitebread America by Linda Furiya
Alice Waters and Chez Panisse by Thomas McNamee
My Life in France by Julia Child
Lost on Planet China: One Man's Attempt to Understand the World's Most Mystifying Nation by J. Maarten Troost
Same Kind of Different As Me: A Modern-Day Slave, an International Art Dealer, and the Unlikely Woman Who Bound Them Together by Ron Hall & Dencer Moore
The Book of Lost Things by John Connolly

7 books, 2192 pages

That's 55 books through June, so I am still on pace for 100 by the end of the year.

Sunday, May 31, 2009

My May Reads

The White Tiger by Aravind Adiga
*My Invented Country: A Memoir by Isabel Allende
*Pride and Prejudice and Zombies by Jane Austen and Seth Grahame-Smith
The Last Summer (of You & Me) by Ann Brashares
*The Host by Stephenie Meyer
The Idiot Girl and the Flaming Tantrum of Death: Reflections on Revenge, Germophobia, and Laser Hair Removal by Laurie Notaro
*City of Refuge by Tom Piazza
Look Again by Lisa Scottoline
*The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaeffer
The True Naomi Story by Alayne Silver
*Olive Kitteridge by Elizabeth Strout
The Geography of Bliss: One Grump's Search for the Happiest Places in the World by Eric Weiner (368)

12 books, 4,096 pages

I highly recommend the books I've asterisked; although some of them I own on Kindle and don't have to loan - sorry!

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Interesting . . .

Penguin to Publish Vladimir Nabokov's Last Work

The Telegraph reports that Penguin will publish Lolita author Vladimir Nabokov's last book. The book is called The Original of Laura. It's a novel that Nabokov wanted destroyed when he died. His death wish will not be granted as the novel will be in bookstores in November.
Kirschbaum said she and Stefan McGrath, the managing director of Penguin Classics, sealed the deal after a three-day stay at Dimitri Nabakov's home in Montreaux, Switzerland. It was brokered by Andrew Wylie, the New York-based literary agent known as 'The Jackal'.

Kirschbaum said: "It was important that we meet because it was a big acquisition, and it was quite emotional for Dimitri because it was a big decision to publish, which took him decades."

The Original of Laura returns to territory that Nabokov explored in his previous novels Mary, Lolita and Ada – the yearning to recapture young love.

It is narrated by a man who fell obsessively in love with a girl when young, but is now unhappily married to a promiscuous wife.

Kirschbaum, who described the book as both dark and comic, said: "In this novel he is also very interested in psychology and in what it means to hate yourself and want to disappear."
The book was written on a series of 138 index cards. Penguin will publish the cards as well as a text transcipt. Penguin Classics will reissue Nabokov's backlist when The Original of Laura is released.


Friday, May 1, 2009

My April Reads

Another month in which I did not get in 10 books, but I have read 36 books this year in 4 months. So, I am averaging 9 per month right now, and at that pace, I will hit 100, which is the goal. If I actually get to take my 10-year anniversary trip in 10 days, I would expect my May reading to pick up. I've downloaded some "beach reads" to my new Kindle 2 - This Charming Man by Marian Keyes and The Host by Stephenie Meyer. Not sure what else I will be bringing with me . . .

Here are the April reads:

A Wild Sheep Chase by Haruki Murakami
The Beautiful Miscellaneous by Dominic Smith
The Monsters of Templeton by Lauren Groff
C'est La Vie: An American Woman Begins a New Live in Paris by Suzy Gershman
Bloodsucking Fiends by Christopher Moore
The Last Bridge by Teri Coyne
The Wednesday Letters by Jason F. Wright
Watchmen by Alan Moore

8 books, 2640 pages.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Japanese Anime Movies

I promised to post some links to some Hayao Miyazaki movies, My Neighbor Totoro and Spirited Away. I would say that Totoro is great for preschoolers, and Spirited Away is better suited to school age kids.

The only one that I haven't let my 8 yo watch is Princess Mononoke. It's pretty violent and downright strange. I think I once heard a joke about needing to smoke a little something along with this movie, if you know what I mean. . . Just noticed on IMDB that Neil Gaiman wrote the English screenplay!

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

My March Reads

Well, I fell off my 10-book pace this month, (March is always hectic) but I have a little lee-way on my 100 book goal. That is, if I read 10 books every month, I would be at 120 by year end. Here are my March reads:

Valeria's Last Stand by Marc Fitten
The Alchemist by Paulo Coehlo
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson
The Glass Castle: A Memoir by Jeannette Walls
Loving Frank by Nancy Horan
Heart and Soul by Maeve Binchy
Handle with Care by Jodi Picoult
Unaccustomed Earth by Jhumpa Lahiri

2,982 total pages

Thursday, February 26, 2009

February reads

I hit my 10-book per month quota with two days to spare, so here they are:

Forever Odd by Dean Koontz

Kitchen Confidential Updated Ed. :Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly by Anthony Bourdain

Dating Jesus: A Story of Fundamentalism, Feminism, and the American Girl by Susan Campbell

The Gifted Gabaldon Sisters by Lorraine Lopez

White Noise by Don DeLillo

Here's the Story: Surviving Marcia Brady and Finding My True Voice by Maureen McCormick

Gentlemen and Players by Joanne Harris

An Arsonist's Guide to Writers' Homes in New England by Brock Clarke

People of the Book by Geraldine Brooks

Ten Little Indians by Alexie Sherman

Page total: 3,871

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Some Bookish Links

Book Club For Boys has some suggestions for starting a boys' book club and some reading lists based on level. I thought Jen might be interested, I have hard time finding things for C (right now it's Captain Underpants and Goosebumps.)

Flashlight Worthy. I found this through Twitter (I should say they found me). They publish book lists on various topics on a frequent basis. And I love lists.

Anybody else found anything fun or interesting?

Sunday, February 1, 2009

On my way

In January, I read 10 books for a total of 4,109 pages.

The Elegance of the Hedgehog by Muriel Barbery
Thursday Next: First Among Sequels by Jasper Fforde
American Gods by Neil Gaiman
The Hour I First Believed by Wally Lamb
Harvesting the Heart by Jodi Picoult
The Tales of Beedle the Bard by JK Rowling
When You are Engulfed in Flames by David Sedaris
We Need To Talk About Kevin by Lionel Shriver
Slumdog Millionaire by Vikas Swarup
Chasing Harry Winston by Laura Weisberger

I've posted my reviews at LibraryThing and GoodReads.

One reading month down, 11 to go. Ten books down, 90 to go! :^)

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Reading goals for 2009

Well, actually, it should be "goal." I only one so far (on top of my annual one, which is to read 100 books per year - something that has not happened since I became a mother!). My new 2009 reading goal is to post a review for each book I read. I am currently doing this at LibraryThing, GoodReads and to a lesser degree Facebook. Yes, they are all the same review. Please, how much time do you think I have? :^)

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Yeah for Atlanta!

Atlanta is one of the country's most literate cities. :^) This year the following study:

rated it 6th overall. But Atlanta did not make the Top 10 for the booksellers category. It ranked 6th in Education Level. It didn't make the Top 10 in the internet resources category. It didn't make the Top 10 in the libraries category. It didn't make the Top 10 in the newspapers category. And it ranked 6.5 in the publications category. I didn't look at all the data closely enough to figure out how Atlanta ended up ranked 6th overall. Last in the overall rankings? El Paso, TX.

And here for some commentary . . .

I agree, it's interesting.