Friday, August 18, 2006

I know I know I know

Right, so I haven't been doing any reading lately. Not even an on line newspaper (although I have been reading the online version of TV Guide; does that count? Yeah, didn't think so).

I kinda feel bad about this, but at the same time, I just don't want to read. The urge isn't there, which is a problem.

I mean, not only am I completely failing the SRC (still on "The House of Mirth"), but I've got to have "Saturday" read before Tuesday's book club meeting.

However, I have received several new books from my boss-boss (a voracious reader, he decided to unload quite a few from his collections), including:

"The Professor and the Madman" by Simon Winchester. It's been on my list for a few years now, so I'm quite happy with this one.

"The Devil in White City" by Erik Larson. I already own this, so this one will go to my cousin for Christmas.

"Menace in Europe" by Claire Berlinksi...dunno. The title grabbed me.

"On History: and other essays" by Michael Oakeshott. I don't know if he wrote all of these, or collected them, but the name was familiar, so I stole it from my boss's hand.

"Europe: a history" by Norman Davis. I like history, and despite taking AP Euro History, remember very little. Except 1066 was when William conquered England and 1666 was the Great Fire of London.

and then...

"The Scarith of Scormello: a tale of Renaissance forgery" by Ingrid Rowland. Apparently based on facts from a case of forgery during the seventeen century.

"The Meaning of Treason" by Rebecca West. I grabbed this solely because I remember Pages Turned was reading her works.

"The Ice Museum: In Search of the Lost Land of Thule" by Joanna Kavenna. Grabbed this because I remember Collene from chasing ray mentioned...well, something about Thule.

The last two, "Infamous Scribblers: the Founding Fathers and the rowdy beginnings of American Journalism" by Eric Burns and "Fifth Street: Murderers, Cheetahs, and Binion's World Series of Poker" by James McManus, I picked solely because of my unholy love of Rory Gilmore. (Yes, tv. Evil thing, I know.)

Her character is/will be/wants to be a journalist, hence the first book. During an ep, she was at a poker game where somebody mentioned "fifth street". That's been bugging me for two years.

So that's the new haul, haven't read any of them yet, and probably won't for a while. I'm going out of town this weekend, so I'm hoping that I'll at least START "Saturday".

(Also, my uncle is in the hospital and it is/was pretty serious so that was..well, distracting. Much better now.)

Man, I hope I can kick this summer slump soon.

Monday, August 07, 2006

Back on track

(I hope!)

Right, so I left off at finishing "1984". Immediately after reading that, I started "Animal Farm", which, looking back, was something of a mistake.

"Animal Farm" was an incredibly quick and easy read, but so similar to "1984" that it was all I could do to finish the book. Again, rather a depressing book about life and dictatorships and never getting ahead and being lied to, but at least it was written in an interesting way; I can see why this book is usually assigned in High School English classes.

After that, I started and finished "Tam Lin", by Pamela Dean. I think I heard about this over at ChickLit, but I can't be sure. I know they had a discussion about it though a while back. I skimmed through it because I was hoping that someone else had already compiled all the literary reference that Dean threw in (someone did). If you don't know, Dean rewrote this (Scottish) ballad, setting it during the 70's in a college in Michigan. I have to be honest, while I figured out who "Tam Lin" was, as well as the Fairy Queen, I had no idea about Nick and Robin. That one took me by surprise.

Now, I've started "The House of Mirth" by Edith Wharton, but I'm only 5 chapters in. While I'm enjoying it, especially Lily, I'm getting a bit antsy for the "story" to start...which I think is the wrong mindset. From the bit I've read about this story (and it wasn't much because I didn't want to be spoiled for the ending), the whole story is part and parcel and I just need to keep reading. For some reason though, it's a bit difficult this time around.

Taking stock, since starting the SRC (and I've yet to update since "Sense and Sensibility"; the very first book!), I've read 4 of my 14 books. It would have been 5, had I been able to slog my way through the last half of "The Beautiful and the Damned"...

I knew going in that the odds of me actually meeting my self-imposed challenge were slim, but I really thought I'd have gotten up to at least 8 books read. I know that there's still a bit of time (23 days, right?), but I don't know that I can read 4 classical books (The House of Mirth, Crime and Punishment, The Awakening, and Bleak House) in that length of time.

Still, I'm so going to try.

Where did the time go?

I can't believe I haven't posted in 2 weeks!

That will be rectified tonight!