Sunday, July 5, 2009

Sunday Salon 13 - 2009 Mid-Year Thoughts


Kafka on the Shore
A Short History of Tractors in Ukrainian
The Glass Castle
A Huge Accomplishment: Middlemarch - George Eliot

My Favorite Review (Self Interview): Twilight - Stephenie Meyer
Miles from Nowhere

10,729 Pages
31 books
My goals this year were a little different--read 24,00 pages and 40 books from the TBR stack. 16 of the 31 are from the TBR stack (acquired before 12/31/08) and 10,729 pages. Not great on either count. But, I'm not stressing and I'm having fun. So, I'm OK with the goals not quite being met.

My Current Challenges (this will make you feel good):
Orbis Terranum hosted by Bethany (2/9)
Non-fiction Five (hosted here) (1/5)
Classics Challenge hosted by Me (2/7)
Arthurian Challenge hosted by Becky (0/5)

Finished challenge:
Once Upon a Time 3 hosted by Carl

And what the heck, Some New Ones:

The Southern Reading Challenge hosted by Maggie
The GLBT Challenge hosted by Amanda
The Canadian Book Challenge hosted by Book Mine Set (John Mutford)

As you can see, I've gone kind of lax this year with the challenges. I'm absolutely, 110% OK with that--having fun, right? And reading!! I'd love some suggestions for the GLBT and Canadian Book Challenge if you've got them. Of course I'll be reading Atwood for the Canadian and Fingersmith for the GLBT.

WHEW! What is on your top 10 (or 8) list for the midway point? If you had to say: "Trish! Read this book now" what would that book be?

**I'm headed out of town and will be trying to schedule this post. I'm sure the formatting is going to hate me--if it's all muddled, forgive me and I'll fix it on Sunday/Monday. boo!


Amanda said...

Hey! We both have Woman in White on our best of the year lists. :) I love this format with all the pictures and stuff. I think you're doing great for the year.

farmlanebooks said...

Great selection! I loved Fun Home and Kafka on the Shore. I'm going to have to get a copy of The Glass Castle soon though. I keep seeing it mentioned!

Megan said...

I haven't read any of your faves for the year, but I've got a few on my TBR pile (and a few on my enormous wish list!). My own favorite read of the year is probably The Well and the Mine by Gin Phillips. So that would probably be the one book I'd say, "read now!" And it happens that it would totally fit for the Southern Reading Challenge, too... ;-)

ANovelMenagerie said...

love love love the glass castle. it's one of my favorites.


Laura said...

It's kinda neat that 3 of your favorites are from our book club! I HAVE to recommend Emily of New Moon for the Canadian challenge, even though you're probably really tired of hearing me talk about it! :)

claire said...

Trish, I recommend Still Life with June by Darren Greer for GLBT! And that's hitting two birds with one stone because it's Canadian. :D

Other Canadian suggestions:

Whimsical: Stunt by Claudia Dey.
Serene: Barnacle Love by Anthony De Sa.
Intense: DeNiro's Game by Rawi Hage.
Enchanting: Away by Jane Urquhart.
Pleasant: Larry's Party by Carol Shields.
Nostalgic: Ten Thousand Lovers by Edeet Ravel.
Adventurous: The Law of Dreams by Peter Behrens.

Scrap girl said...

I would have to say Twilight is still my favourite book ever!

Rebecca :) said...

I couldn't get through The Woman in White but I am keeping it on the shelf to try again at another time. Sometimes I think my mood predicts if I can get into some stories or not (although others I can clearly identify as never going to like.)

I read The Glass Castle last fall and LOVED it. And I think you were one of the bloggers who got me hooked on reading Kafka on the Shore (although I have not read it yet). I am getting ready to read Murakami's Norwegian Wood for the Take a Chance Challenge. Have you read that one yet?

Other books I loved this year were A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini, Shattered Reality by Kimberly Cheryl, and Secret Daughter by June Cross.

JoAnn said...

Another mention of The Woman in White today! I can't wait to read it his fall! Middlemarch is a huge accomplishment - maybe I'll get through it someday.

Nymeth said...

I loved all the books you listed that I've read, so I'm thinking I should read the others - which are 3, 4 and 7.

And Trish! I know of a book you should read NOW! And it's a book you already own - aren't I nice? :P Fingersmith by Sarah Waters. You saw it coming, didn't you? :P

Eva said...

I am WAY too lazy to keep count of page numbers! I tried it this year, and I think I managed through February before I just stopped caring.

The Woman in White is awesome; of course, Wilkie Collins in general is awesome.

Diane said...

I'd like to try Kafka on the Shore. I just finished After Dark by this author; it was good.

J.S. Peyton said...

I'm so happy to hear you liked FUN HOME and WOMAN IN WHITE! I read both of those last year and I absolutely loved them both. I'll have to keep my eye out for your review.

If you haven't already, I'd recommend reading The Moonstone, another Collins book. The Woman in White is better, but The Moonstone is very close second!

Trish said...

*Amanda - The formatting was a pain in the butt, so I don't know if I'll do this for the year in review. Woman in White was a great book--glad you liked it too.

*Farmlanebooks - Glass Castle was a really great book--I hope you're able to read it soon!

*Megan - I haven't heard of The Well and the Mine, but I'll definitely have to look it up! Especially since you say it fits well with Southern Reading Challenge.

*NovelMenagerie - Wasn't The Glass Castle great? It's one that I'll continue to rave about for a while.

*Laura - Well, if you pick up the Emily books I'll have to borrow at least one for the challenge. And I love that so many of our book club picks are ones that we all enjoyed!

*Claire - Wow--thanks for all the suggestions! And I love how you have them broken down into different categories. :) I also have Yellowknife coming to me, so that will go on the list as well.

*Scrap girl - LOL! I didn't LOVE Twilight, but I had a lot of fun writing the review.

*Rebecca - My mood definitely dictates what I like as well. Woman in White was a little tough but worth it fi you can get back to it. I haven't read Norwegian Wood, but I have Wind-up Bird Chronicles on my list for this year's challenge.

*JoAnn - Woman in White was definitely an easier read than Middlemarch. Definitely read it--it's a great classic pick.

*Nymeth - *Sigh* Should I read Possession or Fingersmith first? :) Out of the ones you haven't read I think you'd really like Boy's Life. Both of the others I think you'd like as well--they're all so different.

*Eva - I'm a nerd--I keep all of this in a spreadsheet for easy calculating. :) I wish I would have kept track in grad school though. Seems like some weeks I was reading 1000+ pages.

*Diane - I haven't read any of Murakami's other works, so I can't compare, but Kafka was really good--strange but good.

*JS Peyton - I read Moonstone first and really liked it as well. Not as much as Woman in White, so I'm glad I read it first and didn't have anything to compare it to.

Lisa said...

Man, I can't even remember what I read to tell you. I loved Patricia Brigg's newest, but that's not really your style. LOVED A Homemade Life by Wizenberg and Wintergirls.

Just finished Boy's Life, as you know. I'm going to review it before I reread yours.

Nadia said...

I always get lost on your blog. ( In a good way) I start reading and think up lots of comments but by the time I pause long enough to write a comment I'm in a post you did like 3 months ago... keep up the good work. I love to see what your up to. I think you've inspired me to reread Tom Sawyer. I loved it the first time, so why not the second :)

Melody said...

Great post, Trish!
It's great reading everyone's mid-year reviews...I've been adding a few books onto my wishlist along with this process, LOL! Guess I've to do mine too. :P

violetcrush said...

You've read some really good books. The Glass Castle is one of my all time fav's. I'm waiting for her next book to release.

infiniteshelf said...

Great post! :D
I have Watchmen on my "Best of 2009" list, too. It was surprising since it was my first trip into this genre!

Jess said...

I have had two 5 stars since January -- The Divorce Party by Laura Dave and The Spellman Files by Lisa Lutz. Fantastic job so far this year -- keep up the great work!

damnedconjuror said...

I write down the name, title, year published, page number, rating and I have a colour-coded key for if the book is from the library, my own or if I burrowed it from someone. I have it all nicely stored on an Excel spreadsheet. Also, I have a back-up too.

I still need to read The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao.

My highest rated books so far are The Unfolding of Language by Guy Deutscher and Flat Earth News by Nick Davies.

samantha.1020 said...

I just finished The Glass Castle and am glad that I finally got around to reading it. It was definitely worth it although it made me sad at times. Looks like you've read some good books this year so far.

Dar said...

Great selection of books Trish! I loved The Glass Castle as well. I think she may have a new book out. I keep forgetting to check it out. The Woman in White is on my shelf. I'd love to get to it this year but we'll see. I have so many favorite books that it's impossible to just say one but I would say Ethan Frome had to be one of my faves for 2009 so far this year.

Trish said...

*Lisa - I’ve heard a lot of good things about Wintergirls, but I think if I read her I’ll go with Speak first. I’m going to have to look up Patricia Brigg just to see what my style isn’t. :P
*Nadia - Can I tell you how much I love it when you come by here? I know reading isn’t everyone’s thing, so I really appreciate when you pop by to say hi. Yes Yes, read Tom Sawyer again! It was a lot of fun and great for the summer. Can I entice you with any reading challenges?? Ha!
*Melody - I don’t think I did a mid-year review last year, but it’s fun to look back and see how your progress is going and see where you need to go to meet your goals!

*Violetcrush - The Glass Castle really was a great book. Looks like Half-Broke Horses comes out in October!

*Infiniteshelf - Watchmen was a very different read for me but a great one. I think I like the memoir graphic novels a little better, but it was definitely an entertaining and memorable ride. Have you read any graphic novels since then?

*Jess - I haven’t heard of The Divorce Party or The Spellman Files but with 5 star ratings I’ll definitely be sure to look into them! I hope you have a great second half of the year.

*damnedconjuror - Goodness you are organized! I like how you keep track of whether the book was borrowed or one you own. I have a spreadsheet with all my personal books and then one for the books I read each year, but before my blogging started I don’t have any record of the books I’ve read but weren’t my own (which are few, but still…). Gotta love Excel!! Oscar Wao is an interesting one, that’s for sure. I haven’t heard of either of your top books for the year.

*Samantha - So glad you liked The Glass Castle! It was really sad at times but somehow it felt hopeful at the end. She’s coming out with a new book in October—looks like a novel based on her grandmother’s life.

*Dar - New book coming out in October. Just looked it up but the title is already escaping. Down Broke Horses? Broke Down Horses? :) Anyway, something like that. Woman in White is great, but rather lengthy. So glad Ethan Frome is on your top list so far as I *need* to read that one soon!

Lisa said...

In a word: werewolves.

But I find myself unable to remember your stance on Twilight, so I could be wrong.

Lisa said...

Also, WAY WAY WAY better than Twilight. ;)

John Mutford said...

I like when people multitask so I've come up with a partial list of books or authors you can read for both the Canadian Book Challenge and the GLBT challenge:

1. Bill Richardson
2. Douglas Coupland
3. Rick Mercer
4. Skim- by Mariko Tamaki and Jillian Tamaki
5. Douglas LePan
6. Arthur Motyer
7. Ann-Marie MacDonald
8. Douglas Gosse
9. Marie-Claire Blais
10. Nicole Brossard
11. Timothy Findley
12. Scott Symons
13. Connie Fife
14. Ivan Coyote

I'm sure there are many others, but these should help!

Michelle said...

I only have one thing to say... You are AMAZING!

Veens said...

jeez! wow! u have read really so many books!
i really don't know how to review Twilight myself :) I LOVED IT TOO! i stayed AWAY for the fear that i will hate it :D :D
but then I love it!


1/10 - OT'09!

Trish said...

*Lisa - Ah, werewolves. Hmmm. Don’t got much else to say! :P

*John Mutford - Thanks for all of the great suggestions! I was thinking about MacDonald for your challenge as I loved Fall on Your Knees, so I’m glad to hear I can double dip! I’ve been hearing great things about Skim lately as well. Thanks for hosting!

*Michelle - You’re funny. My numbers are pretty weak compared to soooo many of the others, but I feel pretty good about it.

*Veens - We’ll have to read the 3rd and 4th books at the same time so that we can interview each other for our reviews! It’s hard to interview yourself. :P

Bookfool said...

That was fun reading! I don't know how I missed your self-interview, but I just read it and it was such fun!

The two that I loved most -- just off the top of my head -- are Simon Van Booy's latest, Love Begins in Winter and Scared by Tom Davis. I'd shove both into your hands, if you were nearby.

dolcebellezza said...

Kafka for sure! I even loved him just as much the second time around!