Meme: And the memes continue!

Posted 8 June, 2009 by Li in Meme / 0 Comments

Ten books you became utterly lost in
– Carlos Ruiz Zafon’s The Shadow of the Wind
– J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings
– Jane Austen’s Persuasion
– Andromeda Romano-Lax’s The Spanish Bow
– E.M. Forster’s A Room With a View
– Ian McEwan’s Atonement
– Markus Zusak’s The Book Thief
– Patrick Rothfuss’s The Name of the Wind
– Brandon Sanderson’s Elantris
– Robert Ludlum’s The Bourne Ultimatum

Nine books that you would give to an alien civilisation who were curious about human storytelling culture[s]
– The Bible
– Jane Austen’s Sense and Sensibility
– J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings
– Collection of William Shakespeare’s works
– Collection of Hans Christian Anderson’s works
– Collection of Brothers Grimm works
– Collection of Russian Fairy Tales
– Federico Garcia Lorca’s collection of poetry
Aesop’s Fables

Eight books that left you wondering if you were missing the point
– Miriam Toews’s A Complicated Kindness
– Charles Dickens’s Great Expectations
– Thomas Hardy’s Far From the Madding Crowd
– Emily Bronte’s Wuthering Heights
– Cervantes’s Don Quixote
– Franz Kafka’s Metamorphosis
– John Locke’s Second Treatise
– Henrik Ibsen’s A Doll’s House

Seven non-fiction books that engaged you as much as really good fiction might
– Orlando Figes’s The Whisperers
– David Remnick’s Lenin’s Tomb: The Last Days of the Soviet Empire
– Margaret MacMillan’s Paris 1919: Six Months That Changed the World
– Jane Dunn’s Mary and Elizabeth: Cousins, Rivals, Queens
– Vasily Grossman’s A Writer at War: Vasily Grossman With the Red Army
– Andrew Cohen’s While Canada Slept: How Canada Lost Its Place In the World
– Strobe Talbott’s The Russia Hand: A Memoir of Presidential Diplomacy

Six fictional characters you wouldn’t kick out of bed
– Eomer (LOTR)
– Faramir (LOTR)
– Mr. Henry Tilney (Northanger Abbey)
– Mr. John Thornton (North and South)
– Mr. John Rokesmith (Our Mutual Friend)
– Captain Frederick Wentworth (Persuasion)


Five heavy / cerebral works of literature that are worth the effort
– Fyodor Dostoevsky’s Crime and Punishment
– Charles Dickens’s Our Mutual Friend
– Leo Tolstoy’s War and Peace
– Plato’s Republic
– Pope Benedict XVI’s Deus Caritas Est

Four short stories you think everyone should read
Can’t answer this section, I don’t read short stories *blushes*


Three things from books (images, ideas, characters) that really snagged your imagination.
– Middle Earth (LOTR)
– Cemetery of Forgotten Books (The Shadow of the Wind)
– The magic system in the Abhorsen trilogy


Two genres that are in danger of taking over your shelves
– Fantasy (a la Tolkien, Williams, Ruckley, etc.)
– Classics (a la Austen, Gaskell, Russian authors, etc.)


One literary series that was completely satisfying from page one to page done
– J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings

Meme: Musing Mondays, Teaser Tuesdays

Posted 8 June, 2009 by Li in Meme / 2 Comments

Today’s MUSING MONDAYS post is about reading time…

Do you have a set reading time (before bed, perhaps)? Do you read more at night or during the day? Is there a day of the week, perhaps, that you set aside to catch up on reading?

Just One More Page

I usually read at night (especially during the school year) because no one can bother me at that point and it’s very quiet so I can sink into what I’m reading more easily. I guess you can say that I read more at night than during the day but since my summer vacation started, I’ve been covering quite a bit during the day. I usually read every night, partly to keep me sane from other things (lately, however, reading my novels have been steering me away from practising my Russian more fully, lol *blushes*)

And since I’m going to be busy 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: “It felt as natural as breathing to be drawing again. Turning the pages without thinking, stopping only to pour a little India ink into a small dish and refill the pen.” – p. 118, Hunting and Gathering by Anna Gavalda

Review: Our Mutual Friend (1998)

Posted 5 June, 2009 by Li in Books, Entertainment / 4 Comments

Our Mutual Friend
By: Charles Dickens

I had read Dickens’s Great Expectations back in November/December and wasn’t thoroughly impressed by it; it was okay but I found myself trudging through a good part of the novel. I figured after a while that I probably wasn’t in the right headspace at this time to read Dickens and decided to come back to his works later on. However, I watched the 1998 BBC adaptation of Our Mutual Friend recently and absolutely fell in love with the story so I decided to check the book out as well. And I rather enjoyed it.

Read More

Meme: Booking Through Thursday

Posted 4 June, 2009 by Li in Meme / 7 Comments

“This can be a quick one. Don’t take too long to think about it. Fifteen books you’ve read that will always stick with you. First fifteen you can recall in no more than 15 minutes.”

Booking Through Thursday

Here we go, 15 books:

  • The Lord of the Rings by J.R.R Tolkien
  • Persuasion by Jane Austen
  • The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho
  • The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon
  • Atonement by Ian McEwan
  • Sense and Sensibility by Jane Austen
  • North and South by Elizabeth Gaskall
  • A Room With a View by E.M. Forster
  • Fathers and Sons by Ivan Turgenev
  • Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
  • Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen
  • Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte
  • Veronika Decides to Die by Paulo Coelho
  • Ocean Sea by Alessandro Baricco
  • The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde

Meme: Another book meme =D

Posted 3 June, 2009 by Li in Meme / 2 Comments

1. Which book has been on your shelves the longest?
Hmm, I believe it’s my Carmen Sandiego books (Colour Me Criminal, The Cocoa Commotion, Take the Mummy and Run and Hasta La Vista Blarney!); I learned a lot from those books =D


2. What is your current read, your last read and the book you’ll read next?
Last read: David Hewson’s The Garden of Evil
Current read: Bram Stoker’s Dracula, Elizabeth Kostova’s The Historian (re-read)
Next read: Toss-up between Sylvia Plath’s The Bell Jar and Anna Gavalda’s Hunting and Gathering. Or maybe Dickens’s Our Mutual Friend. Hmm, too many books on my to-read list xD


3. What book did everyone like and you hated?
I heard wonderful things about Maguire’s Wicked but I dunno, I thought it was okay, nothing spectacular. I’m also currently re-reading Kostova’s The Historian to see if my opinion will change; I love the research and the history but I found the writing and the plot rather dry and way too drawn out…maybe a second read will change my mind?


4. Which book do you keep telling yourself you’ll read, but you probably won’t?
Rodgers’s The Safeguard of the Sea and Coelho’s The Zahir

5. Which book are you saving for “retirement?”
Life’s too short; got to read as much as you can now 😉


6. Last page: read it first or wait till the end?
I try to wait until the end, however there’s been an occasion where I have flipped to the end to see what the last line says *blushes*


7. Acknowledgements: waste of ink and paper or interesting aside?
Interesting aside, though I’ve only bothered to read them in a few books…


8. Which book character would you switch places with?
Good question; maybe Anne Elliot from Persuasion (if only to have a man like Captain Wentworth write a letter like that to me—you guys know what letter I’m talking about ;)) or maybe Eowyn from LOTR…a little bit frightful given that it was the War of the Ring at the time but I’d trade places with someone on Middle Earth to get a chance to live there…save for like, the orcs and the Haradrim, of course 🙂


9. Do you have a book that reminds you of something specific in your life (a person, a place, a time)?
LOTR and Williams’s Memory, Sorrow and Thorn trilogy remind me of my high school years 🙂


10. Name a book you acquired in some interesting way.
I got The Complete Works of William Shakespeare at a book sale at university for cheap…its cover is leather and it was published in 1923. Has to be the greatest buy I’ve ever had book-wise 😀


11. Have you ever given away a book for a special reason to a special person?
Not that I can think of…


12. Which book has been with you to the most places?
Again, none that I can think of…


13. Any “required reading” you hated in high school that wasn’t so bad ten years later?
Ehh, haven’t re-read all of the books I’ve read in high school. One story I do have is that I read Pride and Prejudice in Grade 11 and didn’t think much of the book at the time (had to write an ISU essay on the book, that’s why—it was my favourite from the batch that year though). I decided to re-read it again when I was in first year university (especially with the movie coming out and everything) and fell in love with it completely. So it was more of a meh to yay reaction rather from hate to okay kind of thing.


14. What is the strangest item you’ve ever found in a book?
Um, I don’t know?


15. Used or brand new?
New please *blushes*


16. Stephen King: Literary genius or opiate of the masses?
Don’t really have an opinion on this one, I don’t read his stuff.


17. Have you ever seen a movie you liked better than the book?
Good question, movies and adaptations have their own merits from the books. I’ve seen a number of adaptations that were pretty horrid renditions of the book but I can’t really think of a movie adaptation that was better than the book…oh wait, actually, from what I heard of the book, I prefer the movie adaptation of The Painted Veil 🙂


18. Conversely, which book should NEVER have been introduced to celluloid?
Eragon—five seconds into the movie my brother and I already started poking fun at it. That was not good; it totally destroyed whatever interest I had in the books to begin with (and I did read the first book).


19. Have you ever read a book that’s made you hungry, cookbooks being excluded from this question?
Frances Mayes’s A Year in the World; makes me wish I could travel to all those places and eat all that food she mentioned throughout 🙂


20. Who is the person whose book advice you’ll always take?
I listen to everyone on my LJ list and my friends in RL (who read a lot of books) and make a decision about particular recommendations from there 🙂