Monday, December 17, 2007

Winter time reading - and a challenge

Yesterday was a snow day here in Toronto. Is there anything better than snuggling in a nice warm blanket, watching some Sesame Street and reading books? Nope - I didn't think so!

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I've decided to take part in a reading challenge for 2008. As I've mentioned before, I buy books. A lot of books. Although I may purchase these books, it doesn't necessarily mean I get around to reading every book on my shelf. Things come up, life intervenes, some other more interesting book comes along, or sometimes I just don't feel like reading what I have lined up. As a result I have a number of books that have languished for years and years, being dragged off the shelf, taken on countless vacations, stuffed in purses and backpacks, re-shelved, and then pulled out to start the cycle all over again, and yet somehow they still don't get read.

To help clear this backlog, I've decided to join the To Be Read Challenge 2008. the premise is simple - you pick 12 books (and up to 12 alternates) that have been on your "to be read" list for more than six months. Starting on January 1, 2008 you can begin reading any of the titles on your list, in any order. The goal is to read 12 titles in total and clear them from your "to-be-read pile".

With a drum roll and some fanfare, and in no particular order, here is my list:

1) The Mists of Avalon - Marion Zimmer Bradley

Sisters in the Wilderness - Charlotte Gray

3) The Corrections - Jonathan Franzen

Bitch - Elizabeth Wurtzel

5) 100 Years of Solitude - Gabriel Garcia Marquez

Tipping the Velvet - Sarah Waters

7) Sophie's World - Jostein Gaarder

Possession - A. S. Byatt

9) Watership Down - Richard Adams

The Historian - Elizabeth Kostova

11) Niccolo Rising - Dorothy Dunnett

Ahab's Wife - Sena Jeter Naslund

Alternates List:

Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell - Susanna Clarke

Alias Grace - Margaret Atwood
Love in the Time of Cholera - Gabriel Garcia Marquez

I Am Charlotte Simmons - Tom Wolfe

The Tipping Point - Malcolm Gladwell

So those are my titles. Anyone want to play along?


flutter said...

Ok love in the time of cholera is so amazing....

cinnamon gurl said...

Ooh, I've read four of those! I loved 100 Years of Solitude the most. It's in my top five books of all time.

I may play along, mostly because this is a great way for me to remember which books I want to read when I'm in a position to acquire them (ie the library or a used book store).

nomotherearth said...

Omigod! The Mists of Avalon is my Favourite Book of All Time! The boys are named after knights of the Round Table too..

You can skip Jonathan Strange - veeeery long and not worth the time and trouble when all is said and done. The ending sucked. But it wasn't terrible.

SciFi Dad said...

I really want to know what you think of Sophie's World. I thought it was so incredible that I went out and got Maya and read it in one sitting.

Anonymous said...

Mists of Avalon has always been one of my favorites, too.

I have a book list collecting dust around here...why it's not in my wallet next to my library card is a mystery I pondered just yesterday as I struggled to find one book for myself to add to the pile of thirty for the kids.

I'm horrible at commitment, so I'll never say whether I'm playing along or not. But I should. I really should. Oh, OK, you twisted my arm. If I can find the list.

Mac and Cheese said...

I'd love to play along, but I know myself too well to think that I'll knock off all 12.

caramama said...

I am totally in! I do the same thing! I was just thinking about all the books I have in stacks waiting to be read that I just don't get to and how I need to stop buying and reading new books until I read some of the older ones.

I'll come up with a list this weekend after I inventory.

Love your booklist. I have Mists of Avalon on my stack, also, but it seems so long that it might take 6 months to read!

bubandpie said...

Be prepared for the fact that The Historian will take awhile to read. I liked it, but it took me months to finish it. (That, admittedly, is on my one-chapter-before-bed schedule.)

kgirl said...

I LOVED Sisters in the Wilderness, but I have a bit of a pioneer fetish. Bitch is pretty good, and I would move Gabriel Garcia Marques to the must-read list.

Suz said...

It took me forever to get through the Corrections, mainly because it really didn't grab my attention. I couldn't really ever get into it. Good luck! It sounds like a fun project!

painted maypole said...

hmmm... i may play along, too. let me think on it...

100 years of solitude is one of my favorite books.

ewe are here said...

Amazing list! I hope you find the time to complete your challenge.

I've only read two, Watership Down (many years ago), and The Tipping Point.

Aliki2006 said...

Oooh, Watership Down--a favorite of mine! I read The Tipping Point, too and liked it. And Love in the Time of Cholera is amazing...

Magpie said...

I may need to do this. I've new books from Christmas, and there are books from LAST Christmas that are still unread. This is a good kick in the pants.


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