LisaMorr reads 1001 books or dies trying ;)

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LisaMorr reads 1001 books or dies trying ;)

1LisaMorr
Editado: Maio 23, 2020, 2:23pm

I've recently updated my 1001 spreadsheet I'm pretty sure I've read 93 of the 1001; that's conservative though - I did have some others on the list marked as read, but I'm doubting my memory a bit since I read 1984 last year, thinking it was going to be a re-read, and after making my way through it discovered there's no way I had read it before!

So, I've gone through the list and taken a few off that I'm not 100% sure I've read; I may find out once I get into them that I did read them, and that's OK.

Books read from the combined lists:
1. The Sea
2. 2666
3. Cloud Atlas
4. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time
5. Never Let Me Go
6. The Book of Illusions
7. The Blind Assassin
8. The Reader
9. The Secret History
10. The Crow Road
11. Remains of the Day
12. Foucault's Pendulum
13. The New York Trilogy
14. Watchmen
15. Love in the Time of Cholera
16. The Handmaid's Tale
17. The Wasp Factory
18. A Pale View of Hills
19. A Confederacy of Dunces
20. The Name of the Rose
21. If On A Winter's Night a Traveler
22. The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy
23. Delta of Venus
24. The Shining
25. Interview with the Vampire
26. Fear of Flying
27. Surfacing
28. 2001: A Space Odyssey
29. Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?
30. Wide Sargasso Sea
31. A Clockwork Orange
32. No One Writes to the Colonel
33. To Kill a Mockingbird
34. The Tin Drum
35. Things Fall Apart
36. The Once and Future King
37. The Lord of the Rings
38. Lolita
39. Casino Royale
40. The Old Man and the Sea
41. Foundation
42. The Catcher in the Rye
43. I, Robot
44. Nineteen Eighty-four
45. The Plague
46. Animal Farm
47. Pippi Longstocking
48. The Little Prince
49. The Outsider
50. For Whom the Bell Tolls
51. The Grapes of Wrath
52. Rebecca
53. Of Mice and Men
54. Their Eyes Were Watching God
55. The Hobbit
56. Gone with the Wind
57. Man's Fate
58. Brave New World
59. A Farewell to Arms
60. Orlando
61. Lady Chatterley's Lover
62. Mrs. Dalloway
63. The Great Gatsby
64. Siddhartha
65. The Age of Innocence
66. Ethan Frome
67. Heart of Darkness
68. Timbuktu
69. The Player of Games
70. The Long Dark Tea Time of the Soul
71. Shikasta
72. The World According to Garp
73. The Collector
74. The War of the Worlds
75. The Time Machine
76. The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes
77. The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
78. Erewhon
79. Little Women
80. Alice's Adventures in Wonderland
81. Madame Bovary
82. The Scarlet Letter
83. David Copperfield
84. Wuthering Heights
85. Jane Eyre
86. Vanity Fair
87. The Red and the Black
88. Pride and Prejudice
89. The Yellow Wallpaper
90. The Monk
91. Candide
92. Aesop's Fables
93. Don Quixote
94. A Short History of Tractors in Ukrainian
95. The Master and Margarita
96. Treasure Island
97. The Return of the Soldier
98. Life and Death of Harriett Frean
99. Memento Mori
100. Summer Will Show
101. The White Tiger
102. I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings
103. Castle Rackrent
104. Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit
105. The Optimist's Daughter
106. The Mysteries of Udolpho
107. The Passion of New Eve
108. Summer
109. Kristin Lavransdatter
110. Crash
111. The Forsyte Saga
112. Dirk Gently's Holistic Detective Agency
113. A Room with a View
114. Autumn of the Patriarch
115. The Thirty-Nine Steps
116. The Pursuit of Love
117. Love in a Cold Climate
118. Lord of the Flies
119. The Turn of the Screw
120. The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle
121. The Fall of the House of Usher
122. The Pit and the Pendulum
123. The Purloined Letter
124. Invisible Cities
125. Pilgrimage
126. The Garden of the Finzi-Continis
127. In Cold Blood
128. Crossfire

2LisaMorr
Jan 30, 2016, 6:50pm

Looking at my progress over the last several years - I've read 33 since 2008; the most I've read in any year in the time frame was 7, so my modest goal in 2016 is 10.

I've read one this year so far - No One Writes to the Colonel.

3streamsong
Jan 31, 2016, 11:29am

Welcome and gotcha starred, Lisa!

I love reading the reviews by those whipping through the list, but I'm always happy when people join who are more on my casual reading level!

4LisaMorr
Jan 31, 2016, 12:17pm

>3 streamsong: Thanks for the welcome!

5paruline
Fev 3, 2016, 11:38am

Good to see you here!

6paruline
Editado: Fev 3, 2016, 11:40am

Esta mensagem foi removida pelo seu autor.

7paruline
Editado: Fev 3, 2016, 11:41am

Esta mensagem foi removida pelo seu autor.

8LisaMorr
Fev 3, 2016, 2:22pm

>5 paruline: Thanks!

9LisaMorr
Mar 17, 2016, 11:22am

#94 A Short History of Tractors in Ukrainian
I enjoyed this one - a quick and easy read. I identified more with the narrator than I expected to, so some parts were more painful than funny for me. That being said, I enjoyed learning about the history of the family in Ukraine and the development and resolution of the family crisis in the UK.

10LisaMorr
Abr 10, 2016, 6:16pm

#95 The Master and Margarita
I guess I get why this is on the list, but it didn't really do that much for me. I read the Burgin and O'Connor translation, which is supposed to be pretty good, and it included annotations by Bulgakov's biographer, Proffer. The annotations were very helpful in understanding the context. I thought the novel within the novel about Pontius Pilate was really interesting.

11LisaMorr
Jun 17, 2016, 5:55pm

I did a re-read of Aesop's Fables in May. I was pretty sure I had read these as a kid, but decided to pull my Easton Press version off the shelf and just check. And I would say that I was very familiar with the great majority of the 100 fables in my edition, although some were new.

I don't think I ever read about who Aesop was, so I found the preface and introductory information enlightening.

I also pulled Arabian Nights off the shelf thinking it might be a re-read (but I was less sure of this one and never put it on my read pile), and while we all know about Aladdin and the lamp, it was clear as soon I started this tome that I hadn't read it before. So, that's what I'm dipping into now.

12LisaMorr
Jun 19, 2016, 3:33pm

I've been reading Counterfeit Unrealities by Philip K. Dick, a collection of 4 novellas including Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?. Thought I had read this before, but I don't remember it. I have seen Blade Runner many times and the novella is different enough that I think I would've remembered it.

Hopefully I won't have too many more false positives on my list!

13LisaMorr
Jul 16, 2016, 2:16pm

#96 Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson

Can't believed I missed this one growing up. What a good swash-buckling tale! Long John Silver was not what I expected.

14Jan_1
Jul 17, 2016, 1:57pm

I love Treasure Island, one of my favourite books as a kid and still love re-reading it.

15LisaMorr
Jul 26, 2016, 1:31pm

>14 Jan_1: Really happy to have finally discovered what a fun book it was.

16LisaMorr
Editado: Set 24, 2016, 4:04pm

#97 The Return of the Soldier by Rebecca West

A beautifully written short novel, The Return of the Soldier tells the story of a soldier returning from war with shellshock - he doesn't remember his wife and instead can only think of the girl he was in love with when he was young. It can't end well.

17LisaMorr
Editado: Set 24, 2016, 4:05pm

#98 Life and Death of Harriett Frean by May Sinclair

An interesting study on Victorian mores covering the life of Harriett Frean from birth to death; Harriett's self-sacrifice actually ends up hurting several people's lives, rather than just her own. I can see how it made the 1001 list - not saying that I enjoyed it though!

18LisaMorr
Editado: Set 24, 2016, 4:05pm

#99 Memento Mori by Muriel Spark

Several senior citizens start receiving ominous phone calls - "Remember you must die."; Muriel Spark's novel than proceeds to describe each of these folks and what their lives are like. Each has a different set-up, either living alone, in a government hospital/nursing home ward, private nursing home, hotel or with their significant other. They have interconnected lives - some were servants to others, others had affairs, secrets abound. I've read one other by Spark (Loitering with Intent), which I liked a lot more, but this novel was unique in its treatment of senior citizens.

19streamsong
Set 5, 2016, 1:01pm

I think Return of the Soldier will be one of my favorite reads of the year. What did you think?

20LisaMorr
Set 10, 2016, 5:04pm

>19 streamsong: I need to add some comments here, but in a nutshell, it was hauntingly beautiful and very sad.

21LisaMorr
Editado: Set 24, 2016, 4:06pm

#100 Summer Will Show by Sylvia Townsend Warner

I started this in August as part of All Virago/All August. I thought I would be able to blaze right through it, but it dragged on. I just didn't like the writing and the main character was not very likeable. I was committed to finish it though. I actually went and checked out the entry in the 1001 book and it gave me some information on the plot that made me think, "That's interesting, I'll have to finish it now." Some would say spoilers!

But anyway, this is about an English woman, one of the landed gentry, taking care of her estate and her two children while her husband is in France with his mistress. After her children die (no spoiler - it's on the back cover!), she doesn't have a purpose in life and so journeys to France to get her husband back. She falls in love with her husband's mistress as the revolution of 1848 gets under way in France.

As I mentioned, I didn't like the writing, it was very slow going, but I decided to finish it for the plot. It was interesting to see how the main character changes her views on the revolution as the novel progressed.

22paruline
Set 19, 2016, 11:59am

Congrats on reaching 100!

23LisaMorr
Set 19, 2016, 1:53pm

24LisaMorr
Editado: Mar 21, 2017, 11:37am

#101 The White Tiger by Aravind Adiga

Well written and I blazed right through it. A very sad depiction of what it takes to move up from the bottom rung in India.

25LisaMorr
Editado: Mar 21, 2017, 11:51am

#102 I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou

This is a different one from many on the list as a memoir/autobiography. It covers a number of pivotal moments as Maya grows up in Arkansas, St. Louis and San Francisco, which include, of course, racism. Very good book.

26LisaMorr
Mar 21, 2017, 11:27am

#103 Castle Rackrent by Maria Edgeworth

I finished Castle Rackrent on Friday. Published in 1800, it's described in the introduction as one of the most famous unread novels in English.

Also from the introduction, 'combining the subtle wit of the French tale, the Gaelic cadences of Irish oral tradition, and Gothic intrigue over property and inheritance, Castle Rackrent has gathered a dazzling array of firsts - the first regional novel, the first socio-historical novel, the first Irish novel, the first Big House novel, the first saga novel.'

How all this could fit in 114 pages, which includes a preface and a glossary by the author, is pretty amazing. But on reflection I guess it does! I read this along with the glossary and explanatory notes - the glossary was so much more than a glossary, taking 3 pages to explain the Irish lamentation for the dead, a couple of pages on Fairy Mounts and explaining well and truly what a raking pot of tea is (raised eyebrows...). It's about four inhabitants of the Castle Rackrent, Sir Patrick, Sir Murtagh, Sir Kit and Sir Conolly and how the run their estate.

I picked this up ostensibly to fit in a short 1001 book that also met the March RandomCAT and I'm so glad I did!

27LisaMorr
Abr 21, 2017, 11:36am

#104 Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit by Jeanette Winterson

This novel which has been described as semi-autobiographical (Winterson says in the Introduction, "Is Oranges an autobiographical novel? No not at all and yes of course."), tells the story of young Jeanette who is adopted by an English Pentecostal family. Jeanette believes she will grow up to become a missionary and writes sermons and preaches. She also falls in love with a young girl and her mother and other members of the church pray to get the demons out.

This novel had an interesting structure - each chapter was named from a book of the old testament, in order starting from Genesis. There were also two other stories being told within the main story of Jeanette - one about Sir Perceval as he searched for the holy grail and another about a young woman who became a wizard's apprentice.

28amaryann21
Abr 21, 2017, 1:06pm

I love Jeanette Winterson! I'm intentionally holding back on reading all her books because I need to have some to look forward to!

29amerynth
Abr 21, 2017, 11:32pm

If you liked "Oranges" and want to delve any further into the "is this autobiographical or not" Why be happy when you can be normal? is definitely worth a read.

30LisaMorr
Abr 23, 2017, 8:07am

>28 amaryann21: This was my first Winterson, and I'm definitely looking forward to more. In fact, I just picked up Sexing the Cherry yesterday.
>29 amerynth: Thanks for the recommendation - I will definitely be on the lookout for that!

31LisaMorr
Ago 10, 2017, 9:48am

#105 The Optimist's Daughter by Eudora Welty

It's about a young (well, youngish, I'm not sure of her age) widow who comes home when her 70+ year-old father tells her he needs to see the doctor for trouble with his eyes. Her widowed father married a woman not much older than her when he was 70, and the new wife and the daughter don't get along. I found the new wife to be horrid and pretty much wanted to smack her. Well, the father goes in for eye surgery and the remainder of the book has the daughter exploring her parent's life together as well as her own short-lived marriage. I didn't find it very satisfying.

32LisaMorr
Ago 10, 2017, 5:28pm

#106 The Mysteries of Udolpho by Ann Radcliffe

What a tome - and in my view just too many words! For what it's worth, I do now understand about all the mysteries of Udolpho... This is a gothic story of a young woman who loses both her parents and comes under the guardianship of her aunt who is not very nice. Her aunt marries someone even less nice who eventually takes his new wife and her niece to live in a castle/fortress in the Italian countryside where he tries very hard to get the women in his life to sign over their assets. Ann Radcliffe would start every chapter with a quote from a poem or Shakespeare and she would also include a variety of sonnets within the novel - something like, she walked along and the scenery was so beautiful she put to pen to paper and came up with the following verses. I have to say after the first few, I ritually was skipping those sonnets...

33M1nks
Ago 10, 2017, 7:06pm

I skipped them too :-) Bless that fast forward button!

34MartinBodek
Ago 11, 2017, 1:46pm

A perfectly alternate title for this monstrosity would have been "Kitchen Sink," because everything was stuffed into it - but I got nothing out of it.

35luvamystery65
Ago 11, 2017, 3:57pm

>34 MartinBodek: Indeed!

Thanks for reading Udolpho with me Lisa.

36LisaMorr
Ago 19, 2017, 2:24pm

#107 The Passion of New Eve by Angela Carter

I guess you can describe this as a futuristic dystopian novel. Evelyn, an Englishman visiting New York City, gets caught up in the violent break-up of that city and escapes, driving across the country to the desert. There he is kidnapped by a militant feminist group that turns him into a woman, the perfect woman. Now, as Eve, she escapes that group only to be kidnapped by Zero and his band of seven wives, to become wife #8. They make a pilgrimage to the home of legendary Hollywood star Tristessa. Eve and Tristessa then escape, only to be captured by a band of young militant boys who are bound for California to fight in the civil war there. Just a little too surreal, too weird for me - I didn't enjoy it.

37LisaMorr
Ago 19, 2017, 2:26pm

>33 M1nks: Glad I'm not the only one - sort of feels like cheating, but I just couldn't take it!
>34 MartinBodek: Kitchen sink is a good description.
>35 luvamystery65: Glad we got through it together!

38LisaMorr
Nov 29, 2017, 8:50am

#108 Summer by Edith Wharton

At 205 pages, it was a quick read - a beautifully written novella about a young woman adopted by a family living in a poor New England town, who has a love affair with an educated young man from the big city; you know it can't end well for her!

39LisaMorr
Out 4, 2018, 5:38pm

I haven't had a very good reading year so far in general and that goes for 1001 books as well. I've been focusing on series this year, and picked two 1001 series to include: The Forsyte Saga and Kristin Lavransdatter.

I have read the first book of The Forsyte Saga, The Man of Property, as well as The Wreath, part 1 of the Kristin Lavransdatter trilogy. I'm sure I'll finish both by the end of the year, for a wholly underwhelming 2 1001 books for the year...

40luvamystery65
Out 4, 2018, 8:58pm

Thanks for joining me on the Forstye Saga read. I'll pick it up again in November. I wanted to read Kristin Lavransdatter, but I never found the time. I did read Don Quixote this year, so there is that!

41DeltaQueen50
Out 5, 2018, 1:21pm

Hi Lisa, I am dropping a star here and look forward to following along. I really enjoyed Kristin Lavransdatter when I read it earlier this year. I was less fond of The Forsythe Saga, probably because I didn't care for many of the characters.

42LisaMorr
Out 5, 2018, 4:49pm

>40 luvamystery65: You did well with Don Quixote, congrats on that one Ro! I'll pick Forsyte up again in November with you, we can finish together - I think from the group read thread, we're at the same place?

>41 DeltaQueen50: Thanks Judy for stopping by - I have also enjoyed Kristin Lavransdatter more than The Forsyte Saga so far for the same reasons (although Kristin annoys me sometimes with her decisions...). I have to say I've found both to be much easier to read than I expected! I'm about halfway through The Wife and will see if I can get through it and The Cross this month.

43LisaMorr
Out 22, 2018, 4:01pm

#109 Kristin Lavransdatter by Sigrid Undset

Well, the last 1001 book I completed was short, this one is longish at 1149 pages. Three separate books actually, The Wreath, The Wife and The Cross.

Sigrid Undset brought Norway in the middle ages to life with this trilogy focused on Kristin Lavransdatter's girlhood, marriage and old age. It was beautifully written and reminded me very much of a trip two years ago to the fjords of Norway. I learned a lot about this period in Norway from the standpoint of religion and politics - but also about day-to-day life and customs. Kristin is a very stubborn, passionate and religious woman who holds grudges, and these qualities make for a very interesting life.

I highly recommend it - in the Tiina Nunnally translation (an example of the difference between the Archer and Nunnally translations is given in the introduction of The Cross) - it went much quicker than I expected.

44amerynth
Out 22, 2018, 8:50pm

I appreciate the review of Kristin Lavransdatter as I've been considering it for a while. Sounds like it will be up my alley based on your description.

45Alireza.Asheri
Out 23, 2018, 3:32am

I read a book every week and every two weeks, but I do not think I can read 1001 books before my death, I also need to read specialized books on polyethylene and the field of work.http://fa.parsethylene-kish.com

46LisaMorr
Out 23, 2018, 8:47am

>44 amerynth: You're welcome - enjoy it!

47LisaMorr
Out 23, 2018, 4:17pm

#110 Crash by J. G. Ballard

I just realized that I finished this book last year in December while I was on vacation and never included it here. Or maybe because I wanted to forget it...

I'm sorry, but this was just completely messed up. Just yuk in every way. But I slogged through it, and not proud to say that I finished every word. It's about some very weird people who get off on car crashes, both watching them and even more so being involved in them. I'll say no more except that I'm certainly glad to be done with this one (and that it was short).

48LisaMorr
Nov 29, 2018, 11:45am

#111 The Forsyte Saga by John Galsworthy

I finished off The Forsyte Saga yesterday. Very well done and overall I really liked it. The version I read included the three books (A Man of Property, In Chancery and To Let) along with two short interludes between the books. I must admit that in parts of In Chancery and To Let I skipped ahead to see what was going to happen (quite exciting in a soap opera way...) - but then I went back and read every bit that I skipped. I'm not sure what that says about me, but I just felt more comfortable knowing the ending and was able to then leisurely enjoy the descriptive writing. I don't do that with every book, but felt the need here.

Lots of unlovable characters. My vote for the worst still goes to Irene I really couldn't forgive her in denying her son and Fleur the chance to be together; Young Jolyon gets second place for his role in this fiasco.

Eventually I will continue with the rest of The Forsyte Chronicles, but not just yet.

49LisaMorr
Nov 29, 2018, 2:31pm

1001 reading plans for December and 2019

So far, I've only completed two entries on the 1001 list this year - although they were both long.

In December I've got a few 1001 books in my plans - hoping to take advantage of vacation to check a few more off:
A Room with a View
Dirk Gently's Holistic Detective Agency
The Sorrow of Young Werther
The Good Soldier
The Autumn of the Patriarch

For 2019, I'd like to be able to complete 1 1001 book a month. I had a very limited 1001 goal for 2018, and I completed it; my focus this year was mainly on completing, catching up or at a minimum making some progress on all of the series I've got going (similar to last year's goal). I made more progress than last year by focusing on fewer series, but still not very much. In 2019, I still want to make some progress on series books, but I will focus even more on a smaller number of series, and allow more room for other books, like 1001 books.

I think I will use the various monthly challenges in the 2019 category challenge group to help me select; I do want to read these:
After the Death of Don Juan
The House of Mirth
The Well of Loneliness
The Birds Fall Down

And MAYBE Pilgrimage.

50LisaMorr
Dez 9, 2018, 2:21pm

#112 Dirk Gently's Holistic Detective Agency by Douglas Adams

I finished Dirk Gently's Holistic Detective Agency yesterday and it was pretty wild. Somehow Douglas Adams managed to create a time travel end-of-the-world mystery based on Samuel Taylor Colerige's The Rime of the Ancient Mariner. And it had a lot of funny bits of course. Well done!

51DeltaQueen50
Dez 10, 2018, 2:19am

>50 LisaMorr: Glad to hear that you enjoyed the Douglas Adams book, I am planning on reading it for next years SFFFKit in October as the theme is going to be humor and I think this one will fit nicely.

52LisaMorr
Dez 10, 2018, 3:53pm

>51 DeltaQueen50: It'll be a fun, quick read (not all 1001 books are like that...)!

53LisaMorr
Dez 16, 2018, 8:48pm

#113 A Room With a View by E. M. Forster

This 1001 book started out a bit too 'precious' for my taste, but it improved a bit and turned out all right. The first part of the book has Lucy touring Florence with her cousin (who acts as her chaperone) and has some interesting experiences with the other English tourists staying at the pension, as well as some English ex-pats. In the second part of the book, Lucy is back home in England where she runs into some of the folks she met in Florence and Rome. The book is both a romantic comedy and an expose of English society at the time.

54LisaMorr
Jan 3, 2019, 5:50pm

#114 Autumn of the Patriarch by Gabriel Garcia Marquez

Only 229 pages, yet it took me about a week (on vacation!) to read! Sentences would go on for pages, each chapter one long paragraph. It tells the story of the despot of an unnamed Caribbean island; how he managed to hold on to power for so long, seemingly dying at least twice and ruling for 100? years. Brutal depictions of torture; rape was depicted in an almost nonchalant way. Not quite my cup of tea - but another 1001 book crossed off the list...

55JayneCM
Jan 3, 2019, 7:21pm

>54 LisaMorr: I must admit to not liking graphic descriptions in novels. There is enough horror in the world already without reading more. And in many cases, the detail doesn't add to the novel; you could do just as well by using sparse description and letting the reader fill in the gaps.

56Yells
Editado: Jan 5, 2019, 1:29pm

I am reading One Hundred Years of Solitude and it feels like I have been reading it for years instead of days. The man writes well but uses 14 words instead of one. It's worth it in the end but it does take work to get there!

57LisaMorr
Jan 5, 2019, 11:31am

>55 JayneCM: I think I used to like graphic descriptions more - I loved horror growing up; and while I still love the horror genre, I'm a bit more likely to skip over some of the really graphic bits...

>56 Yells: I read Love in the Time of Cholera a few years back and I remember really liking it; I'm generally OK with very descriptive writers, when it's worth it, as you say. I've also read Of Love and Other Demons and No One Writes to the Colonel and I don't remember them being too wordy. I have quite a few more Gabriel Garcia Marquez books on my shelves to read, and still looking forward to them, notwithstanding Autumn of the Patriarch!

58LisaMorr
Editado: Jan 13, 2019, 7:54pm

#115 The Thirty-Nine Steps by John Buchan

Bored Richard Hannay has already had enough of London, after returning from a life abroad. But then a neighbor drops by and Richard's life becomes very exciting, very fast. The coincidences are unbelievable at times in this espionage thriller as Richard becomes embroiled in trying to stop a secret plot to undermine the British war effort as Europe marches towards WW1. Still it was a fun ride as Richard races across Scotland by train, car and on foot as he tries to shake his pursuers and expose the plot.

59LisaMorr
Mar 11, 2019, 10:19am

#116 The Pursuit of Love by Nancy Mitford

Within a couple of pages of starting this novel by Nancy Mitford, I ran into a description of a child-hunt, where the narrator's Uncle Matthew would hold an actual child hunt with huge braying hounds chasing two little girls across the country-side; no this isn't The Hunger Games and the little girls loved it and the neighbors thought Uncle Matthew was crazy. Thus starts this novel which was absolutely delightful! Lots of laugh-out-loud moments, but it was also a bit wistful, following along the narrator's cousin in her pursuit of love.

60LisaMorr
Mar 11, 2019, 10:25am

#117 Love in a Cold Climate by Nancy Mitford

A companion novel to The Pursuit of Love, this novel has many of the same characters. It has the same narrator, and covers a period of time that overlap The Pursuit of Love. This time we follow the narrator's friend, the beautiful Polly (Leopoldina actually - her mother rather hoped she might marry royalty), and covers Polly growing up and her mother's efforts trying to marry her off. As with the previous novel, we get to see a lot of what pre-WWII London society was like. Another lovely novel that makes me a big Nancy Mitford fan.

61LisaMorr
Maio 24, 2019, 8:11pm

#118 Lord of the Flies by William Golding

Wow - what a read! I'm not exactly sure what I was expecting, but it wasn't really this. A beautifully written tale of a group of boys stranded on an island as a result of an airplane crash. With no adults around, they start to organize under a leader, Ralph, who gets them set on tasks like building shelters and most importantly keeping a fire going so that the smoke will be noticed and they will be rescued. Ralph's main competitor is Jack, who just wants to hunt the feral pigs on the island. The longer they are there, their civilized nature starts to fall apart and it gets pretty gruesome!

62LisaMorr
Set 13, 2019, 8:30pm

#119 The Turn of the Screw by Henry James

This started with a lot of promise - young woman starts a job as a governess at a country estate, sees ghosts and is very worried about her two young orphaned charges. It took way too long to read for a short novel, because it had too many words, if you know what I mean.

63JayneCM
Set 14, 2019, 2:13am

>62 LisaMorr: I haven't read any James for about 20 years! It will be interesting to read them all again.

64LisaMorr
Set 14, 2019, 3:00pm

>63 JayneCM: This was my first James novel - which one do you remember as your favorite?

65JayneCM
Set 15, 2019, 3:14am

>64 LisaMorr: Hmmm, from memory I am thinking Washington Square, but it has been a LOOONG time.
I am planning to read The Master first now. Looking on the internet, there is a list of novels and stories with Henry James as the subject, so may have to delve into these too.

66LisaMorr
Out 16, 2019, 5:44pm

#120 The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle by Haruki Murakami

Really enjoyed this trip into Murakami's world. A great example of magical realism where everything is normal, but not exactly. Starts off with Toru, a young, married man who currently works taking care of the home, getting a phone call from someone he doesn't know but who supposedly knows him. Then he goes off into the back alley to look for a lost cat. From here we explore the origins of Toru's marriage to Kumiko, Kumiko's family, things that happened during the Japanese invasion of Manchuria, and the puppet state of Manchukuo, the history of a bad luck house, what happens at the bottom of a well, and well, just a whole lot more! Another very good book by Murakami.

67LisaMorr
Out 19, 2019, 4:48pm

#121 The Fall of the House of Usher
#122 The Pit and the Pendulum
#123 The Purloined Letter
by Edgar Allan Poe

I was pretty sure I had read these before, even though I hadn't included them on my list, but now having read them, maybe not!

Three short stories by Poe, the first two would be considered horror and the third a mystery (it reminded me of Sherlock Holmes). They were good, but not amazing.

They are included in the volume, Tales of Mystery & Imagination, which I plan on finishing slowly with a tale or two before bed.

68LisaMorr
Jan 29, 2020, 4:42pm

#124 Invisible Cities by Italo Calvino

At 165 pages, it should've been a quicker read for me, but nothing really happens - Marco Polo just describes imaginary cities to Kublai Khan, and it turns out they are all Venice. Lots of beautiful imagery, but I would've liked more plot.

69BekkaJo
Jan 30, 2020, 7:10am

>68 LisaMorr: I'm about 12 pages in and finding it hard to get any motivation to read it. Which is infuriating - as you say, beautiful imagery.

70LisaMorr
Jan 30, 2020, 11:24am

>69 BekkaJo: At least it's short, and there were a few times where I chuckled at some of descriptions!

71LisaMorr
Editado: Mar 15, 2020, 1:53pm

#125 Pilgrimage by Dorothy Miller Richardson

Four books actually, and more than 2100 pages, of living inside Miriam Henderson's mind in this stream of consciousness work, encompassing 13 novels. I'm glad for the experience of reading this work, but it was not an easy or fast read. It was difficult to follow who was who and to actually understand at times what was happening. At the time of its publication (over several years), her critics didn't suspect it was based on the author's life. I had to read a lot of reference material to understand the actual events taking place - for example, Miriam's mother commits suicide at the end of the first book (as Dorothy Richardson's mother did), but it was not explicitly stated anywhere in the book. I do not know how you would infer this. Also, she has an affair with Hypo (actually H. G. Wells in real life) and supposedly gets pregnant and has a miscarriage (by reading the Wikipedia explanation) - I had no idea from the book that this had happened.

Full of excruciating detail of people, their clothes, houses, furniture, the London streets, and nature, it went very slowly, Still I was interested in what it was like for a single woman to live and work on her own in London in the early 1900s. To attend lectures, read, and learn and question others about philosophy, to travel to Switzerland, live with a Quaker family, fall in love and have men fall in love with her, and to always stay single and live as independently as possible.

72LisaMorr
Mar 31, 2020, 7:21pm

#126 The Garden of the Finzi-Continis by Giorgio Bassani

This short book takes place in Ferrara, Italy at the beginning of WWII and traces the Jewish narrator's relationship with the Finzi-Contini family, an aristocratic Jewish family with a big beautiful home within a very large walled estate. Very lyrical and bittersweet.

73LisaMorr
Maio 7, 2020, 11:31am

#127 In Cold Blood by Truman Capote

Fantastic read. Truman Capote did an amazing job bringing to life the real-life murder of a family of four in rural Kansas in 1959. Read like a novel.

74LisaMorr
Maio 23, 2020, 2:23pm

#128 Crossfire by Miyuki Miyabe

A different entry on the 1001 list, the novel is about a young woman who can start fires with her mind (and yes, in homage to Stephen King, the term 'firestarter' is referenced) and female arson investigator who is investigating a series of arson/homicides. A bit distant, but very good.