Tuesday, May 06, 2008

I'm not going to join any more challenges

but if I was going to, I think that this one, the 1% read challenge, would be really interesting.

And even though I'm not going to join, if I were, my choices would be...

Cryptonomicon – Neal Stephenson
Wild Swans – Jung Chang
If On a Winter’s Night a Traveler – Italo Calvino
Casino Royale – Ian Fleming
The Maltese Falcon – Dashiell Hammett
Lady Chatterley’s Lover – D.H. Lawrence
The Forsyte Saga – John Galsworthy
The House of Mirth – Edith Wharton
The Awakening – Kate Chopin
Bleak House – Charles Dickens

The Woman in White – Wilkie Collins
A Tale of Two Cities – Charles Dickens
Madame Bovary – Gustave Flaubert
North and South – Elizabeth Gaskell

(I did a quick tally of the books from the list and it looks like I've read exactly 5%. And if I I tally up the books I've started and won't finish, it's almost 2%.)

Monday, May 05, 2008

I’ve been splitting my time between a couple of books recently, reading The Twisted Citadel (for reviewing purposes) and The Scarlet Pimpernel. I’m enjoying them both a great deal, although they’re nothing alike. The Twisted Citadel is a dark fantasy novel, with legacies of power, winged warriors, and an evil menace that is perfect in its creation, while The Scarlet Pimpernel is about the French Revolution and a group of Englishmen who saved French aristocrats from the guillotine.

I picked up The Scarlet Pimpernel after a few years of avoiding it (and I can’t remember why I was avoiding it) and am very glad I did. I’ve been reading a lot of swashbuckling, sword-wearing, death-before-dishonor novels lately and everyone was suggesting The Scarlet Pimpernel as a book I’d enjoy reading.

I also just finished Birds of a Feather, the second Maisie Dobbs novel. Quite a good read, and even though I’d figured out who the “bad guy” was, I enjoyed the entire novel. Set in England fifteen years (or so) after the end of World War I, I was startled to come across a reference to Baroness (Emma) Orczy and her participation in The Order of the White Feather, a theme that features heavily in Birds of a Feather.

I knew about the practice of passing out a white feather to men who weren’t in uniform (during WWI), but I hadn’t realized there was an actual order of women…

And although I have no time to read (which has never stopped me before!), these books all sound very interesting:

A Kiss Before the Apocalypse by Thomas E. Sniegoski
A Magic of Twilight by S.L. Farrell
Black Ships by Jo Graham
Bring Down the Sun by Judith Tarr

Fallen by Tim Lebbon
Gladiatrix by Russell Whitfield
Grimspace by Ann Aguirre
Heart of Light by Sarah A. Hoyt
Ink Exchange by Melissa Marr
Madapple by Christina Meldrum
Midnight Never Come by Marie Brennan
Mind the Gap
and Poison Ink by Christopher Golden
Soul by Tobsha Learner
The Queen’s Bastard by C.E. Murphy
Waking Brigid by Francis Clark

and, a non-science-fiction/fantasy novel, Mistress of the Revolution by Catherine Delors