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2014 50 Book Challenge - Page 62

post #916 of 2050
The spread sheet download is only $5.33 US. Quite the bargain.

I've read 121 of the combined 1306 for 9.3% and 100 of the 2012 for an even 10%.

There are quite a few shorter reads that will allow me to catch up...

59. True Blue 2009 David Baldacci

I am invoking my right not to write up a shitty book. That is all.
post #917 of 2050
I am at 13.7 % on the combined (for 3 editions only) and a healthy 16.4 % of the original list from 2006. Can not afford the spreadsheet considering the huge expense of all my other habits.
post #918 of 2050
I am going to catch you... It's just a question of when...smile.gif
post #919 of 2050
Your Baldacci strategy is not speeding up things.

I will pay more attention to the LIST in the second half of the season. But I have a strange obsession with completing all stuff written by some writers that caught my fancy recently: Swedish crime by Trenter and Sjowall / Wahloo; the Lord Peter Whimsey mysteries by Dorothy L Sayers and the grandmaster of American fiction Philip Roth.

You should try Sjowall / Wahloo. Classic police procedurals with a very Swedish feel to them.

Who will be the next American to get the Nobel? It should be Roth or DeLillo. I reckon both have a good chance.
post #920 of 2050
It was an outrage that Norman Mailer never got the Nobel Prize by the way. I read almost all of his stuff when I was in my 20s. A kind of flawed diamond but an unbelievably good writer and a fascinating ugly personality.
post #921 of 2050
Depends if you're going for quality or quantity.

3 of the last 5 list books I picked up were awful (Pastoralia, Emigrants, and Everything is Illuminated). If they don't grab me in 30-40 pgs I turn them back in.
post #922 of 2050

Everything is Illuminated was fucking awful.

 

So bad.

post #923 of 2050
Quote:
Originally Posted by LonerMatt View Post

Everything is Illuminated was fucking awful.

So bad.

Haven't read it. Will save til last. Too busy with work here, I am afraid of slowing down. Had planned to keep a pace of 10 per month this year.

Your pace is still furious Steve, I thought you would also slow down after starting a new job? Or is the job allowing you to read a lot while working, Head of Vigilant Monitoring of nuclear power station control room?
post #924 of 2050
Haven't started it yet. frown.gif

My employer needs a signed contract and they haven't gotten it.

So I read. And read.

There's a 2950 and a 3400 page book on the 2012 list. I plan on reading THEM last.

I don't have much attention span past 500 pages. Learned that with War and Peace.

60. Deliver us From Evil David Baldacci 2010.

Ick. That is all.
post #925 of 2050
Quote:
Originally Posted by LonerMatt View Post

1. The Undivided pt 1

2. The Undivided pt 2

3. No Country for Old Men

4. The Difference Engine

5. Wake in Fright

6. The River of Doubt

7. The Pearl

8. Crytonomicon

9. Shot in the Dark

10. Malcolm X - Biography

11. Final Empire

12. The Quiet American.

13. Habibi

14. The Invisible Man

15. Tender is the Night

16. Guardians of the West

17. King of the Murgos

18. Demon lord of Khandar

19. Sorcress of Darshiva

20. Seeress of Kell

21. Once We Were Warriors

22. Winter of our Discontent

23. Othello

 

24. A Scanner Darkly

 

Phillip K Dick is a writer that I find, often, a bit overblown. While DO Androids Dream of Electric Sheep is amazing, and still one of the most intruiging and beautiful books I've read, very little else of his has ever really excited me. Man in a High Castle was pretty poorly dated, and A Scanner Darkly was severely disappointing.

 

A very incoherent story that doesn't really seem to head anywhere (meandering pointlessly and boringly through about only 4 locations) there are no major revelations, nor are any of the complications brought on by the main character's use/abuse of drugs particularly exciting or engaging. The author notes that this is a book about nothing, and I think that such a statement says it all: there isn't really anything in this book - it's not Sci-Fi'y enough to be interesting in that respect, not really introspective enough to create introspection in readers, not really overt enough to encourage interest in drug culture, or the pretty substantial anti-government slant.

 

It's a bland mess of ideas lumped together joylessly.

post #926 of 2050
Clockwise counting 40/50: Kazuo Ishiguro - The Remains of the Day (1989)

Booker prize winner 1989 and maybe regarded as Ishiguro's finest work. The story is the reminiscences of Mr Stevens, the elderly butler of a grand English mansion, Darlington Hall. In the 1950s, the English aristocracy can no longer afford to keep their lavish living standard with full sets of servants and the changed life conditions have had a profound impact on Stevens and his dignity. The novel's main themes are manners, dignity and suppressed love. There is also a political undertone as the extreme rightist views of some parts of the aristocracy was hopelessly out of touch with the social realities of the time.

I see many parallels and similarities between this novel and Ishiguro's earlier An Artist of the Floating World. Both are very good but between the two I may slightly prefer An Artist. One more to tick off from the List.
post #927 of 2050
61. Sula Toni Morrison 1982

LIST

Pulitzer Prize winner. Story of two young black women coming of age in the 20s and 30s. A study in contrasts- one stays in town and bears children. The other leaves for 10 years, then returns to shake up the small town. She steals her friend's husband just to do it, and beds every other man in town that she can. The one man she grows to love leaves her.

Rich prose; well written. A good read- but if you've read one book by Toni Morrison, you've read them all.
post #928 of 2050
Clockwise counting 41/50: Paul Auster - Winter Journal (2012)

64-year old New Yorker Auster writes another autobiographical book with a focus on body and aging. He is a good writer and parts of this book is enjoyable and interesting reading but much of it appears to be a bit too personal and with little interest as either literature or gossip. We get long lists of events in Auster's life such as complete descriptions of 21 flats and houses he has lived in from the time of his birth until the present day. Some of that stuff becomes boring. The good parts are instead in the small stories that describe his various family relationships, good and bad.
post #929 of 2050
62. Cain Jose Saramago 2011

LIST

A satire of the Old Testament from Cain's point of view. I especially enjoyed the book because I was brought up in a "God -fearing" family and used to think the Bible was true in the literal sense. The book reminded me of how ridiculous the whole thing is and was. (Hope I'm not offending anyone).

Read It- it's great.
post #930 of 2050
63. One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich 1963 Alexander Solzhenitsyn

Chronicles a day in the life of a prisoner in a work camp in Siberia in 1951. Not as depressing as one might expect.

I wouldn't read it unless you are ball-and-chained to The List.
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