Books: Reading List Update

Posted 3 June, 2009 by Li in Books / 0 Comments

Okay, so since my summer vacation began, I’ve been tackling my TBR list. Of course, while I’m reading through it, I’m also adding more books to the list xD But anyways…here’s the current status of my TBR list (because this list covers my TBR list from January; I’ve also taken out all the books I read last month from the list so it’s a lot cleaner, lol):

  • Christopher Andrew & Vasili Mitrokhin’s The Mitrokhin Archive II: The KGB and the World
  • David Anthony Durham’s Acacia
  • Greg Keyes’s The Born Queen
  • The Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien
  • Byron Ayanoglu’s Crete on the Half Shell
  • Douglas Adams’s The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy: A Trilogy of Four
  • Anna Gavalda’s Hunting and Gathering
  • Brian Ruckley’s Bloodheir
  • Benedict Anderson’s Imagined Communities
  • Sylvia Plath’s The Bell Jar
  • J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Legend of Sigurd and Gudrun
  • Cathy Yardley’s Turning Japanese
  • Giles Tremlett’s Ghosts of Spain: Travels Through a Country’s Hidden Past
  • Anthony Capella’s The Various Flavours of Coffee
  • David Rotenberg’s Shanghai
  • Charles Dickens’s Our Mutual Friend
  • Chris Evans’s A Darkness Forged in Fire
  • Elizabeth Gaskall’s Wives and Daughters
  • Elizabeth Gaskall’s Cranford

So right now I have 19 books on my TBR list (5 nonfiction, 5 fantasy/sci-fi, 9 fiction), a sure sign that I must definitely stay away from the bookstore for a very long time *blushes* On top of that, I’m also planning on re-reading some of my books again (another incentive to stay away from the bookstore for now), probably in July though, such as my yearly re-reading of LOTR, Atonement, the other Jane Austen books I haven’t gotten around to yet, etc. 🙂 How I tackle the TBR list however will really depend on which book I feel like reading, lol (as it’s always been xD).

But no rush, really; I guess I’m just posting this because my TBR list has gotten longer than usual *blushes*

Meme: Musing Mondays, Teaser Tuesdays

Posted 1 June, 2009 by Li in Meme / 2 Comments

Okay, I’m on time this week, LOL:

Today’s MUSING MONDAYS post is about sticking with it…

How much time (or how many pages) do you give a book that you aren’t really enjoying before you’ll set it aside? If you’re reading it for a book group discussion, or for review, will you give it more of a chance then, say, a book you’re reading for your own interest? Why, or why not?

Just One More Page

I try to stick it out, slog it through even if I don’t really enjoy the book so much or if the book is going real slow and whatnot (Jurado’s God’s Spy and Toews’s A Complicated Kindness comes to mind). I would especially stick it out if I’m read a book for a group discussion (though I’ve never really participated in a group discussion before—does discussions in English class count? xD If so, I can name a couple of books I had to slog through). I guess my general rule with books is just to stick through it no matter; I don’t really like leaving books unfinished and whatnot, no matter how much I dislike it and no matter whether it’s for personal reading or for a discussion.

I’m also doing this meme today because I dunno if I’ll be logging on tomorrow:

TEASER TUESDAYS asks you to:
– Grab your current read
– Open to a random page
– Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
– Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

Should Be Reading

My teaser for this week: “A distant siren broke the silence of the night. From somewhere in the direction of the Mausoleum of Augustus a blue light flashed down on the alley, like some mutant Christmas decoration newly escaped from the tree.” – p. 262, The Garden of Evil by David Hewson.

Meme: Booking Through Thursdays

Posted 29 May, 2009 by Li in Meme / 0 Comments

Am a bit late this week but here we go…

Is there a book that you wish you could “unread”? One that you disliked so thoroughly you wish you could just forget that you ever read it?

Booking Through Thursday

Oh gosh, hmm, books I wish I could “unread”…well, one book that comes to mind from recent reads is Juan Gomez-Jurado’s book God’s Spy. I read reviews whereby people thoroughly enjoyed the suspense of the novel but I didn’t find it very suspenseful. I thought the characters were annoying and had no sympathy for them even after their “dark pasts” were revealed. I also found that certain plot elements were also introduced too late in the novel that I didn’t care about it so much at that point. So yeah, I wish I could unread that book 🙁

Memes: And yet another meme…

Posted 24 May, 2009 by Li in Meme / 3 Comments

Because I’m in a book meme kind of mood…also got this meme from book_memes:

1. What’s the funniest book you’ve ever read?
It’s funny (no pun intended) but I was looking at my bookshelf recently and realized that I didn’t own very many books that were laugh-out-loud. Two books that come to mind that were hilarious to me were Stephen Clarke’s A Year in the Merde (his description of his time in Paris was just lol) and Helen Fielding’s Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason (there was this one scene in particular that had me laughing out loud).

 

2. What’s the scariest book you’ve ever read?
This is a difficult question to answer because I don’t think I’ve come across a book that was really scary. I will mention that the scariest moment that I’ve ever come across while reading was the chapter in Tolkien’s The Fellowship of the Ring where Gandalf is reading the last entries from this log in Balin’s tomb…I read it late at night and I remember getting chills when I read those passages xD

 

3. What’s the most difficult book you’ve ever read?
For fiction and in terms of getting through it because of boredom (and in terms of memory), it’d probably be Miriam Toews’s A Complicated Kindness. I thought it’d be interesting but it did not capture my interest whatsoever.
In terms of non-fiction, it would be Locke’s Second Treatise (and not necessarily because of boredom); if it wasn’t for my prof’s lectures, I would not understand a single word Locke was talking about. The Essential Works of Lenin was also difficult to get through, especially with all the economics involved.

 

4. What’s the most shocking book you’ve ever read?
I remember reading through…gosh, I can’t remember if it was The Permanent Purge or some other book, about the Stalinist Purges of the 1930s for my independent research paper and I had to stop researching for a while to re-orient myself; the experience that Soviet citizens went through during that time was just unbelievable…the fear, the NKVD, etc. It was intense, I had to give myself breaks before I could continue reading.
As for fiction…I don’t read a lot of crime thrillers often but Jurado’s God’s Spy was a lot more disturbing than I thought it would be (not to mention I didn’t like the book for other reasons, but anywyas). It reminded me why I didn’t read a lot of crime thrillers, lol.

 

5. What book made you cry more than any other?
I don’t cry very often from books and movies and stuff but I remember Nicholas Sparks’s A Walk to Remember got me all teary when I was in high school. As for more recently, the ending of Markus Zusak’s The Book Thief got me all choked up and sad.

 

6. What book gave you nightmares or bad dreams?
It didn’t give me nightmares or bad dreams but reading Joseph Heller’s Catch-22 recently left me with very intense dreams, lol.

 

7. What book inspired you to change your life?
I only book I can think of is Paulo Coelho’s The Alchemist. I read it for the first time in Grade 12 (the book was a gift from my chaplaincy teacher) and it was wondering, very life-affirming. I re-read the book every now and then to remind me that there is hope, that achieving your dreams is possible (even the more out-there ones ;)).

 

8. What’s the most romantic book you’ve ever read?
Jane Austen’s Persuasion. The idea of getting a second chance in love, of experiencing a love that’s constant and steadfast regardless of distance and of the past and of family…it’s just really romantic. And the letter that Wentworth wrote to Anne? Oh how I wish I were Anne 😉

 

9. What’s the most adventure-filled book you’ve ever read?
Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings was certainly adventure-filled. Tad Williams’s Memory, Sorrow and Thorn trilogy was also adventure-filled; all the places mentioned in the map were practically visited over the course of three (or four, depending on whether you got the trade or the mass paperback) books.

 

10. What book carried you off into a land of imagination more than any other?
Hands down, The Lord of the Rings really got me into the fantasy genre and opened my mind to the possibilities of where imagination can take you. It really felt like I was in Middle Earth whenever I read the books, like it’s a real place you can go to and hang out and stuff.

Meme: Just Another Book Meme

Posted 24 May, 2009 by Li in Meme / 0 Comments

First off, just wanted to comment that I changed the layout here on WordPress…felt like changing it and this one’s pretty clean and organized. 🙂

But moving on…meme time! Got it from the book_memes community at livejournal 🙂

 

1. Name the book that has most made you want to visit a particular location.
Reading Carols Ruiz Zafon’s The Shadow of the Wind makes me want to visit Barcelona now. in the past, Spain wasn’t exactly at the top of my list of places to visit but after reading it (and The Spanish Bow by Andromeda Romano-Lax just reinforced the notion), I want to visit Spain, there’s a lot more history and culture in that country than I’ve always thought.

 

2. Which author’s fictional world would you most like to live in?
Middle Earth! 😀 Walk in the streets of Minas Tirith, ride with the Rohirrim, try to catch a glimpse of the elves, hang out with the hobbits…it’d be awesome 😀

 

3. If you were off on an adventure, which five literary characters would you want to take with you?
Good question…
– Aragorn from LOTR (for protection, hehe; he knows what to do in the country, after all)
– Eomer from LOTR (also from protection…plus Arwen’s already claimed Aragorn and I need some eye candy in this group *loves Eomer anyways*)
– JonMarc Vahanian from Chronicles of the Necromancer (for his resourceful and a dose wise ass-ness, lol)
– Fermín Romero de Torres from The Shadow of the Wind (because he’d make a great sidekick and has the best lines—he and Vahanian would probably clash a bit, but whatever)
– Azhure from The Axis trilogy (because she’s tough and level-headed. Not to mention I need a girl in the group so it’s not too lonely xD)

 

4. Name three books that you would take with you if you were suddenly uprooted from all your stuff.
The Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien (counts as one, lol)
Persuasion by Jane Austen
The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon

 

5. You find yourself alone in a strange, potentially hostile place. Pick a literary character who would fill the ‘?’ in ‘WW?D’.
Okay, after scratching my head and wondering what this question meant, I finally understand it: “What would Aragorn do?” 😀