So, I set this goal to read 50 books in a year for 2009. It wasn’t really a resolution, per se, but a goal and something I could do to exercise my brain and also grow spiritually (if I chose some books with that in mind) and professionally (once again, choosing books that would help me better my job performance).
So I thought I’d update you on my progress. Here’s the books I’ve read so far:
1. Full Circle by Davis Bunn: I picked this one up on some random shelf when visiting the library. It turned out to be a Christian fiction book, which I normally don’t like because the genre gets cliche and trite very fast, and this one was just OK.
2. The Lost Memoirs of Jane Austen by Syrie James: A strangely written book with a premise that Jane had some love affair that broke her heart that no one knows about. Written in Jane’s voice. Which wasn’t such a good idea, but the book was OK.
3. Revolutionary Road by Richard Yates: A story set in the 1950s angst-ridden, self-obsessed, re-evaluating period following WWII. There were a lot of words. More than necessary to get ideas and conversations across. I hated the lead characters. And then I cried at the end. It was a good, sobering, sad read, though depressing. I would say it’s a good book, but not one I’ll read again.
4. The Reader by Bernhard Schlick: It was translated from German and you could tell. The plotline involving an older woman having an affair with a 15-year-old guy was really disturbing to me. And that made it hard to read. Then, it just got all crazy and there were Nazis and war crimes and trials. At the end, I was depressed. It really is a good book, if you can stomach the affair (it’s just wrong for 30 year old woman to have an affair with a 15-year old!).
5. She’s Come Undone by Wally Lamb: I don’t know what I thought. It’s a coming of age story with so many crazy things that happen to this one girl. I liked the portrayal of how internalizing all the bad things that happen can tear us up. And how powerful words and abandonment can be, especially in a girl’s life. But I’m not sure Wally is the writer people consider him to be. I doubt I’ll read it again.
6. The Watsons, Lady Susan, and Sandition by Jane Austen: It was the only stuff she’d written that I hadn’t read. The Watsons and Sandition are unfinished because she died somewhere in the middle. Lady Susan is an early piece. It was unsatisfying reading stories that you knew you would never get to see resolved!
7. Second Glance by Jodi Picoult: It’s a ghost story, paranormal investigation, historical mystery, and a murder investigation. All in one book. Sometimes, I think Picoult is a little too in love with her words and her creation. She gets too flowery and her characters sometimes say things that no real person would ever put that way. But it was an easy read and a good story. And I stayed up until the middle of the night one Saturday to finish it. So that has to mean something!
8. Tried by War by James McPherson: It’s a big ol’ book detailing how Abraham Lincoln was the president responsible for creating the Commander in Chief’s duties as we know them. It was quite an education and I don’t know that I ever learned all of the generals’ names discussed in this book, well, you know except for Grant, Lee, and Rosencrans. And that last one is just because it was unusual. I’m glad I took this side trip into the world of non-fiction.
I am currently reading The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold. I think her name is Alice. . . I started this book years ago and never finished. I thought I’d give it another try.
Books on the list for sure:
Crazy Love by Francis Chan
Team of Rivals (maybe)
Riding in Cars with Boys
We Were the Mulvaneys
You guys should give me some suggestions in the comments section. And hurry, I’m going to need to decide my next book soon!