Staci426 tries for 75 in 2009

Discussão75 Books Challenge for 2009

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Staci426 tries for 75 in 2009

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Editado: Jan 2, 2010, 12:28 am

I joined this group a while ago, then forgot about it. I've recently rediscovered it and have been having fun trying to get caught up on everyone's threads. I have been keeping track of what I've read so far this year, so I'll post my list up to date. I'm not sure if I can make it to 75, but I'm going to have fun trying :)

Books read so far:

1. Crystal Rain by Tobias S. Buckell (sci fi) ****
2. The Sea by John Banville (fiction) **1/2
3. Erewhon by Samuel Butler (fiction) ***1/2
4. Howard's End by E.M. E. M. Forster (fiction) *****
5. Alice's Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll (children's) ****
6. Through the Looking Glass by Lewis Carroll (children's) ****
7. Spin by Robert Charles Wilson (sci fi) *****
8. The Gypsy Morph (Genesis of Shannara by Terry Brooks (fantasy) ***1/2
9. Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury (sci fi) ****1/2
10. Journey to the Center of the Earth by Jules Verne (sci fi) ****1/2
11. Holiday in Death by J. D. Robb (mystery) ***
12. The Three Musketeers by Alexander Dumas (classics) *****
13. Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie (mystery) ****
14. The Awakening by Kate Chopin (fiction) ****
15. The Giver by Lois Lowry (YA sci fi) *****
16. Gathering Blue by Lois Lowry (YA sci fi) ****
17. The Golden Ass by Apuleius (fiction) **1/2
18. The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson (mystery) ****1/2
19. Orphans of Chaos by John C. Wright (fantasy) **1/2
20. Kushiel’s Mercy by Jacqueline Carey (fantasy) ****1/2
21. The Time Machine by H. G. Wells (sci fi) ****
22. War of the Worlds by H. G. Wells (sci fi) ***
23. King Solomon’s Mines by H. Rider Haggard (fiction) ***1/2
24. Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen (fiction) ****1/2
25. Death du Jour by Kathy Reichs (mystery) ****
26. The Invisible Man by H. G. Wells (sci fi) ***
27. The Castle of Otranto by Horace Walpole (fiction) ****
28. Shards of Honor by Lois McMaster Bujold (sci fi) ****
29. War for the Oaks by Emma Bull (fantasy) ***1/2
30. Possession by A. S. Byatt (fiction) ***
31. Gulliver’s Travels by Jonathan Swift (fiction) **
32. The Serpent’s Tale by Ariana Franklin (mystery) ****1/2
33. Fingersmith by Sarah Waters (historical fiction) ****1/2
34. Catch 22 by Joseph Heller (fiction) ***
35. Therese Raquin by Emile Zola (fiction) ****
36. Dying Inside by Robert Silverberg (sci fi) ****
37. The Age of Innocence by Edith Wharton (fiction) ****
38. Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets by J. K. Rowling (fantasy) ****
39. The Mummy Case by Elizabeth Peters (mystery) ***1/2
40. Castle Rackrent by Maria Edgeworth (fiction) **
41. Ivanhoe by Walter Scott (fiction) ****1/2
42. A Bold Fresh Piece of Humanity by Bill O'Reilly (non fiction) ****
43. Sourcery by Terry Pratchett (fantasy) ***
44. Barrayar by Lois McMaster Bujold (sci fi) ****
45. Agincourt by Bernard Cornwell (historical fiction) *** 1/2
46. The Warrior's Apprentice by Lois McMaster Bujold (sci fi) ***1/2
47. The Girl Who Played with Fire by Stieg Larsson (mystery) *****
48. Middlemarch by George Eliot (classics) ****
49. The Kreutzer Sonata by Leo Tolstoy (classics) ***
50. The Vor Game by Lois McMaster Bujold (sci fi) ***
51. The Children of Men by P. D. James (sci fi) *** 1/2
52. Uniform Justice by Donna Leon (mystery)***
53. Foundation by Isaac Asimov (sci fi) ***
54. Cetaganda by Lois McMaster Bujold (sci fi) ***
55. Here, There Be Dragons by James A. Owen (ya/fantasy) ***1/2
56. The City and the City by China Mieville (mystery/fantasy) ****
57. Old Man's War by John Scalzi (sci fi) ***1/2
58. To Ride Hell's Chasm by Janny Wurts fantasy *****
59. Grave Goods by Ariana Franklin (historical mystery) ****
60. Frankenstein by Mary Shelley (classic/horror) **
61. The Gathering Storm by Robert Jordan & Brandon Sanderson (fantasy) ****
62. The Forsyte Saga by John Galsworthy (classics) ****
63. The Brutal Telling by Louise Penny (mystery) ****1/2
64. The Best Christmas Pageant Ever by Barbara Robinson (childrens) ***1/2
65. Pompeii by Robert Harris (historical fiction) ***1/2
66. A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens (classics) ***1/2
67. Hercule Poirot's Christmas by Agatha Christie (mystery) ***1/2
68. The Water Babies by Charles Kingsley (childrens) ***
69. Primary Inversion by Catherine Asaro (science fiction) ***
70. Wyrd Sisters by Terry Pratchett (fantasy) ****

Short Stories:

The Yellow Wallpaper by Charlotte Perkins Gilman ****
The Garden Party by Katherine Mansfield ****
The Purloined Letter by Edgar Allan Poe ****1/2

Did Not Finish

Snow by Orhan Pamuk (fiction)
A Voyage Long and Strange by Tony Horwitz (non fiction)
The Traveler by John Twelve Hawks (fantasy)
Fathers and Sons by Ivan Turgenev (fiction)
Cat’s Cradle by Kurt Vonnegut (fiction)
The Black Dahlia by James Ellroy (mystery)
Suite Francaise by Irene Nemirovsky (fiction)
The Pox Party by M. T. Anderson (YA)
The Braided World by Kay Kenyon (sci fi)
1984 by George Orwell (sci fi)
The Secret History by Donna Tartt (fiction)
Under Sea, Over Stone by Susan Cooper (ya fantasy)
The Inheritance of Loss by Kiran Desai (fiction)

Currently Reading:

The Once and Future King by T. H. White (fantasy)

Ago 22, 2009, 8:02 pm

Welcome! You have a very interesting list of books there. I'm glad to see I'm not the only person who gave up on Snow. I really tried, but just couldn't do it.

Ago 23, 2009, 3:46 am

Welcome to the group!

Ago 23, 2009, 3:43 pm

Thanks for the welcome!

tloeffler: Yeah, I really couldn't get into Snow. I didn't care about any of the characters and found the story very slow going and somewhat boring. Also, I was listening to an audio version and the reader's accent wasn't working for me.

Ago 23, 2009, 6:06 pm

Wow, great list! I think our reading tastes overlap a little - I also enjoy reading classics and I'm trying to get to all the ones I somehow missed. And I also like good mysteries, preferably cozy ones.



Ago 24, 2009, 12:11 am

Thanks, Angela! I've been rediscovering the classics through the 1001 Books You Must Read Before You Die. I've come across some great books that I never would have read if not for that book. I count mystery as my third favorite genre, behing fantasy and historical fiction (even though I haven't really read a lot of either of those genres this year). I like myseries that are set either in a different time period or a different location other than the US.

Ago 24, 2009, 11:27 am

Great! I will look forward to seeing what you read in the next few months! :D

Ago 24, 2009, 12:24 pm

Oops - forgot to mention that I also have 1001 Books You Must Read Before You Die, and I use it in a similar way. It's a guide to help me find more interesting books. I'm trying not to force myself to read something on the list just because I 'should' - what fun would that be? :D But I have gotten some great reading suggestions.

Ago 24, 2009, 12:53 pm

I think everyone has their own way of looking at the 1001 books. My personal way of looking at it is that I do want to at least give each book a try, but I'm not going to force myself to finish the book if I'm not enjoying it. So far, the majority of the ones I've read have been enjoyable.

Ago 24, 2009, 12:59 pm

I finished a book over the weekend:

42. A Bold Fresh Piece of Humanity by Bill O'Reilly (non fiction) ****

I decided to take a break from listening to Middlemarch to listen to this quick book, it was only about 7 hours. My boyfriend is a big fan of the Factor and I've started watching it with him sometimes. O'Reilly has been mentioning this book a lot lately, so I figured I'd give it a try. I really enjoyed the audio format. It was read by O'Reilly and he read it in a way that sounded like he was sitting there with you telling you his story, not like he was reading it off a page. This was basically a memoir of his childhood & early career about how he got to be where he is today, with a little historical, political and cultural references thrown in along the way. This has encouraged me to want to check out more of his books.

Ago 24, 2009, 2:00 pm

#10: I will give that one a try. Thanks for the recommendation!

Ago 24, 2009, 8:57 pm

#9 - I agree. There are too many good books out there and not enough time to read them all, so why force yourself to keep going if you dislike it? Sometimes it's hard for me to give up on a book though...perfectionism, maybe? I'm trying to work on that. :)

Ago 28, 2009, 12:17 am

43. Sourcery by Terry Pratchett (fantasy) ***

I listened to an audio version of this on my iPod. I'm a big fan of Pratchett's Discworld series and have read quite a few of the books in no particular order. I was starting to get to the point where I couldn't remember which ones I had read (most of them were before I started keeping track of my reading), so I decided to start over again from the beginning. This one is number 5 and wasn't one of my favorites. This one featured the wizards and the Unseen University. It was still enjoyable and had quite of few chuckle out loud moments for me, but the wizards aren't my favorite characters in the series. Next in line will be Wyrd Sisters, but I don't like to read series back to back, so my next iPod audio book will probably be the third Harry Potter.

Ago 28, 2009, 12:22 am

I was listening to a second audio book on my computer, Middlemarch, but my copy from the library expired before I could finish it, so I had to put that one on hold. I was really enjoying it so far too. I had to get on the waiting list to check it out again, so I probably won't be able to get back to it for at least another month. I started a new one, Agincourt by Bernard Cornwell. I was in the mood for a good historical fiction book and I saw some good reviews of this one in the group, so thought I would give it a try. So far seems pretty good, but haven't gotten too far into it yet.

Set 1, 2009, 12:09 am

44. Barrayar by Lois McMaster Bujold (sci fi) ****

I read this book in ebook format on my cell phone. This was the second book chronologically in the Miles Vorkosigan series, however it was not published in that order. This book takes off right where the first one, Shards of Honor ends. These first two books tell the story of Miles' parents, Aral and Cordelia. This book focusses mainly on Cordelia and her struggles to keep her unborn son alive amidst the backdrop of assassination attempts on her husband, the Imperial Regent, and a civil war. Bujold has created great characters and a great story. This second book is a bit better than the first and I've been told the series only gets better from here, once Miles is introduced. I really enjoyed this one and look forward to reading the rest of this series.

Set 1, 2009, 11:36 am

DNF The Secret History by Donna Tartt (fiction)

I started listening to this in audio format read by the author. I picked this because it was on the 1001 list and so far the story seems interesting. I will definitely come back to this in print form, but I cannot finish listening to it. I do not like Donna Tartt's voice at all as a reader. She has been using some annoying accents for some of the characters, and her normal voice is just not working for me. Not sure when I'll be able to get to a printed version, but do hope to soon.

Set 1, 2009, 11:40 am

#16: I enjoyed The Secret History when I read it a couple of years ago so I hope you give it another shot.

Isn't it amazing how the reader of a book can make or break your enjoyment? I have found this to be the case with my audiobooks anyway.

Set 1, 2009, 5:02 pm

I second that, Stasia. I also have had to give up on an audiobook because of the reader, but I have also listened all the way through some books that I didn't care for, but they sounded so good!

Set 3, 2009, 6:39 pm

Yes, audio book readers are a very important part of the book. I have given up on quite a few because I didn't like the reader. And like tloeffler said, I have continued listening to a book just because I was really enjoying the reader, but not so much the story.

And yes, alcottacre, I will definitely get back to The Secret History at some point in the future when I can find a print version.

Set 6, 2009, 1:35 pm

45. Agincourt by Bernard Cornwell (historical fiction) ***1/2

I listened to an excellent audio version of this novel. The reader did a very good job on this one. This was the story of the battle of Agincourt in 1415 where King Henry V of England beats the French with his outnumbered army consisting mostly of archers. The story is told from the perspective of Nick Hook, an archer from the English country who becomes outlawed after hitting a priest and being condemned to death. He runs away to France where he survives the battle of Soissons, then makes his way back to England where he ends up in the service of Sir John Cornwell. Then eventually makes his way to the battle of Agincourt. I liked the character of Sir John and of course Nick was a great character as well. This was a fast paced, action packed story with some grisly battle scenes. Overall, an enjoyable read.

Set 10, 2009, 9:03 am

46. The Warrior's Apprentice by Lois McMaster Bujold (sci fi) ***1/2

This is the third book in the series, the first featuring the main character of Miles. This was actually a reread for me which is something I normally don't do. Another group that I'm in is reading the series in order, so I figured I'd give this one another try and I'm glad that I did. I enjoyed it more this second time around. I think it was helpful to have read the first two books before this one. I still think I enjoyed those first two books a little bit more than this one, but I'm looking forward to continuing on with the series to see what else Miles gets himself into.

Set 12, 2009, 3:04 pm

47. The Girl Who Played With Fire by Stieg Larsson (mystery) *****

Wow! This book was great. I did not want to stop listening. I stayed up until 2 am trying to get this finished last night, but I had to force myself to stop & go to bed and I finished it today. This is the second in the Millenium Series, and I actually think I liked this one better than the first. In this one Lisbeth Salander is wanted for murder and journalist, Bloomkvist (not sure of spellings, listened to the audio version), tried to clear her name. We learn a lot about Lisbeth in this one. I think she is one of the most interesting characters I've come accross in reading. It's a shame that the author died before he could write more. I'll be eargerly awaiting the third book.

It works out perfectly that I just got a notice that my hold on the audio of Middlemarch just became available at the library, so now I will be able to finish that one. I'm looking forward to it.

Set 23, 2009, 10:39 pm

48. Middlemarch by George Eliot (classics) ****

I'm so glad to have read this book. This was the story of the English country town of Middlemarch in the early 1800s. We get to peek in on the lives of various members of the town. The story deals with love & marraige, the disillusionment of marraige, the roles of men & women of the time, the new advancements of the time and so much more. I decided to give it a try since it was on the 1001 books list and I had heard some good things about it. I haven't really read a lot from this time period, but I will definitely be trying more by Eliot. Althogh this was quite long, I listened to the audio version which was over 30 hours, it was quite entertaining. I really liked Eliot's writing style and the way she made you feel like you were part of the community of Middlemarch.

Set 25, 2009, 12:09 am

#23: I love Middlemarch!

Set 27, 2009, 11:00 pm

#24 Yes, I was pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoyed Middlemarch. I look forward to discovering more of Eliot's work.

Set 27, 2009, 11:10 pm

49. The Kreutzer Sonata by Leo Tolstoy (classics) ***

I can't believe how long it took me to finish this book. It was the story of a man who tells a group of strangers on a train in Russia of how he came to kill his wife. I picked it to read through emails because it was a short one off the 1001 list. It only had 43 parts, but it took me almost two months to finish it. I think I would have enjoyed it more if I had not read it in the broken up email format. I didn't read the emails every day and I felt as though I kept missing something. I could have easily finished this in one or two sittings and gotten much more from it I think. I'm not sure what it was about this one that didn't work in this format for me. I have tried and enjoyed several other books this way. Hopefully the next one will be better, I'm going to start Frankenstein next.

Set 28, 2009, 12:35 pm

I have heard so many people rave about Middlemarch, so I cannot wait to try it!
I just discovered dailylit as well, from this forum of course, and I'm reading Dracula that way. So far, so good. I can see how some books would not work well in that format, though.

Out 4, 2009, 9:41 pm

50. The Vor Game by Lois McMaster Bujold (sci fi) ***

This was the fourth book in the Miles Vorkosigan series. I listened to the audio version, it was a good recording, but I thought the story was just OK. Nothing really stood out for me. I still think that I like the first 2 books of the series featuring Miles' parents best. I think I will put this series on hold for a bit. Normally I don't read books in a series so close together like I've been doing with this one. Maybe I will pick it up again in a few months.

Out 4, 2009, 10:00 pm

51. The Children of Men by P. D. James (sci fi) *** 1/2

This was another audio book. It was very quick moving for me. It was set in the not too distant future, 2021, in an England that is ruled by Xan, who calls himself the Warden. The world has become sterile, the last child was born 25 years ago, and there is a hopelessness in the world knowing that there is no one to carry on in the future. The story is told from Theo's point of view. He is the former advisor & cousin to the Warden. I've been wanting to read this ever since I saw the movie a few years ago. I finally came across this audio version. I don't really remember much about the movie, but the book was pretty different which is usually the case. I think that I actually enjoyed the movie a tiny bit more than the book. I did enjoy the book and am glad to have finally read it.

Out 12, 2009, 4:57 pm

52. Uniform Justice by Donna Leon (mystery) ***

This is a mystery series set in Venice featuring Commissario Guido Brunetti. In this installment, the son of a former politician is found hanged in the bathroom at the military academy he attends, an apparant suicide. However, Brunetti is not so sure. This is the first book I've read in this series and is actually number 12. I don't really feel as though I was missing any thing by starting in the middle of the series. Brunetti is an interesting character and I enjoyed the Venetian setting. I will definitely try some more books in this series. I did have one small quibble though. I listened to the audio version and the reader chose to give everyone Italian accents. He did an Ok job with the accents, but I personally don't think that was necessary in a book that takes place in Italy and where you can assume that the majority of the characters are Italian. Overall an enjoyable read.

I also reacently started and gave up on Over Sea, Under Stone by Susan Cooper. I'm not really sure what it was about this that bothered me, but I just could not finish. I think that I would have enjoyed this much more if I had read it first as a kid.

Out 13, 2009, 1:00 pm

Sorry you did not enjoy Over Sea, Under Stone more. We are doing a group read of the series, and it has continued to improve with every book, IMHO. I hope you give it another chance somewhere down along the line.

Out 15, 2009, 10:20 am

Yeah, I'm not sure what it was about this book that wasn't really grabbing me. I know a lot of the people here on LT really like this series. And I've heard the books get better further in to the series. I might give it another try somewhere along the line, maybe in print format rather than audio for the next try.

Out 15, 2009, 10:35 am

53. Foundation by Isaac Asimov (sci fi) ***

This is a classic work of science fiction. I chose to read it as it's on the 1001 list of books to read. Plus, I've been wanting to read more of the classics in sci fi. This tells the story of the creation & rise of the Foundation, a group of scholars sent to live on a distant planet in the empire whose original purpose was to write the great Encyclopedia Galactica, after Hari Seldon is able to predict the fate of the empire for the next thousands of years through his psychohistory. But the true purpose of the Foundation becomes known later in the story. I thought this was interesting. I'll probably read at least one more in the series. I did not feel much connection to any of the characters I think because the story kept jumping ahead in time so you didn't really get to spend much time with any of them. Overall, I'm glad to have finally read this.

Out 18, 2009, 6:58 pm

54. Cetaganda by Lois McMaster Bujold (sci fi) ****

Well, I was originally planning on taking a break from this series, but decided to go ahead and read this one which is number 5. I'm glad I read it. I really enjoyed this book compared to the last two books. I liked the interaction between Miles & his cousin Ivan in this one. It was also a more satisfying story for me over all compared to the last two as well. So, now I'll probably be continuing on with the series.

Nov 8, 2009, 9:01 pm

55. Here, There Be Dragons by James A. Owen (ya/fantasy) ***1/2

I finally finished a book. Seems like it's been forever. This was a fun, quick young adult fantasy which is exactly what I needed right now in between all of the other things I'm currently working on. This featured a lot of references to literature, myths & legends. It tells the story of three men who become the caretakers of the Imaginarium Goegraphica, an atlas of all the lands that ever existed, who travel to the Archipelego of Dreams to help that land find it's rightful king. There was a fun little surprise at the end. This is definitely a book written for kids, but it was still enjoyable for me as an adult.

Before reading this one, I had started and made it about halfway throught The Inheritance of Loss by Kiran Desai. I just could not get into this one. I never really felt like I knew where the story was going, and I did not care for the writing style. So, yet another one to add to the list of books I have not finished this year.

I have a few other books that I've been working on for awhile now. An audio version of The Forsyte Saga by John Galsworthy. It's over 42 hours long and I'm only on part 11, but I am enjoying it so far. I've also been reading Frankenstein by Mary Shelley via dailylit, I'm about half way finished with that one. I'm almost finished with Old Man's War by John Scalzi which so far has been a quick, fun sci fi read. And I'm a little over half way finished with To Ride Hell's Chasm which so far is a great stand alone fantasy novel by Janny Wurts. That one has been taking me a long time to finish, but so far the time spent has been well worth it.

Nov 9, 2009, 12:59 am

Wow! You have been busy. Some very nice reads mentioned there.

Nov 11, 2009, 10:03 pm

Yes, I have really been enjoying most of those books so far, especially To Ride Hell's Chasm.

In between all those other books, I threw in a quick audio which was pretty good:

56. The City and the City by China Mieville ****

This was an interesting book, very fast paced. I'm not really sure what genre it would be classified under. It was basically a murder mystery story but with some fantasy undertones to it. The story is told in first person through Inspector Tyador Borlu of the Extreme Crime Squad who is trying to solve the murder of a yound woman which turns into more than expected. But I think the main characters in this book are the cities, Beszel & Ul Qoma. Mieville has created a very interesting world here. This was my first book by Mieville & I will be looking for more.

Nov 20, 2009, 5:21 pm

Finished an ebook I've been working on for a little bit:

57. Old Man's War by John Scalzi (sci fi) ***1/2

This was a quick enjoyable military science fiction story. It's sometime in the future and on Earth once you turn 75 you can sign up for the Colonial Defence Forces (CDF) an army that helps protect the people who are leaving Earth to colonize space from the aliens who want the same space. Nobody knows exactly how they turn 75 year olds into soldiers, but a lot of people join up to see how it goes. I had two slight issues with the book, the first was that, even before they were soldiers, I had a hard time thinking of any of the characters as 75 year olds. I'm not exactly sure what it was that made me feel that way, but it just never really clicked in my head that most of these people were 75 or older. And number two, the aliens seemed a bit cartoonish is some places. But overall, an enjoyable read, will look for the next in the series.

Nov 26, 2009, 10:37 am

58. To Ride Hell's Chasm by Janny Wurts (fantasy) *****

I finally finished this book, it took me quite a while, over two months, but it was well worth the time. This was an excellent stand alone fantasy. Princess Anja has disappeared on the eve of her betrothal and the king has entrusted Mykkael, his captain of the lower garrison to find and protect her. Mykkael is a foreigner who is not trusted by anyone in the kingdom and some suspect that he has something to do with Anja's disappearance. This story is much more than your typical fantasy quest. The characters of Mykkael & Anja are fascinating. (I would love to see a prequel telling us about Mykkael's history). There were also six other important characters in this book, a team of beautiful horses. These animals were depicted expertly by the author & not treated as just a horse. The writing is very good, you must read every word on the page. It's not a fast easy read, but the time spent is not in vain. I highly reccomend this book.

Nov 27, 2009, 10:01 pm

59. Grave Goods by Ariana Franklin (historical mystery) ****

This was a quick audio book. This is the third book in the Mistress of the Art of Death series set in 12th century England. This time, King Henry send Adelia to Glastonbury to determine if some bones that were found are those of King Arthur & Guenivere. This was another enjoyable addition to the series. I enjoyed the King Arthur angle in this one.

Nov 28, 2009, 4:29 am

I have not read any of Wurts' books yet. Sounds like To Ride Hell's Chasm may be a good place to start since it is a stand alone. Thanks for the recommendation!

Dez 5, 2009, 11:42 am

Yes, this was my first book by Wurts also. I think it is a good starting place. I will be looking forward to trying more of her books.

Dez 5, 2009, 11:52 am

60. Frankenstein by Mary Shelley (classic/horror) **

I read this via emails and found that it took forever to get through. It was only 84 parts, I thought it would be a quick read to cross off the 1001 books to read list, but it was a bit of a slog for me, thought it would never end. I'm not really sure what it was that I did not enjoy. I'm glad to have read it, I only knew the basics, that Frankenstein creates some type of monster, but never knew any of the details. One thing I was surprised to learn was how young Frankenstein was, I always pictured an old mad scientist type of figure. This was my second dailylit book that I did not enjoy so much. Hopefully the next one I pick will be better.

Dez 8, 2009, 5:04 pm

61. The Gathering Storm by Robert Jordan & Brandon Sanderson (fantasy) ****

This is book 12 in the Wheel of Time series. I've read the first eleven books and wasn't really planning on getting to this one for a little while yet. But then I saw that my library had an audio download version & that there was nobody on the waiting list, so I figured I'd give it a listen. I really enjoyed it. I read all of the other books in print format, but I think I actually enjoyed the audio version more. The plot moved along nicely and we got some good resolutions to some of the ongoing storylines. Oerall, a great installment in the series, can't wait to read the final two.

Dez 13, 2009, 5:33 pm

62. The Forsyte Saga by John Galsworthy (classics) ****

I finally finished listening to this, took two months, but it was quite a long audio book, 37 parts over 42 hours. I'm surprised at how much I enjoyed this. I didn't know anything about it prior to starting it, other than that it was on the 1001 books to read list. The story follows the Forsyte family, an upper middle class family in England from the 1880s to the 1920s. It shows the contrasts between the older & younger generations and the changing times with the turn of the century. I really enjoyed the writing and thought the characters were great. I think I liked the first of the three books the best and preferred the old Forsytes to the young. I also thought it was a good audio production, thought the reader did a great job.

Dez 13, 2009, 8:12 pm

The Forsyte Saga is one of those books that has been in the BlackHole forever. One of these days . . .

Dez 13, 2009, 8:55 pm

46 - Me too! I want to read it soon...

Dez 17, 2009, 10:52 pm

#46 & 47 Yes, I definitely reccomend it. But you have to be in the right mood I think, it is quite long.

Dez 17, 2009, 11:02 pm

63. The Brutal Telling by Louise Penny (mystery) ****1/2

This is book 5 in the Chief Inspector Armande Gamache mystery series. This was my first read in the series and it will not be the last. I've heard so many great things here on LT about these books, that I figured I should give it a try. My library only had book five available for audio download. I didn't feel lost without having read the first books. I thouroughly enjoyed this book, I love the characters, and especially love the town of Three Pines. That was one of the main draws to this series for me, the setting. I have a fondness for Quebec since I spent a semester there in college. I'm very glad to have discovered this series and will be looking forward to the rest of the books.

64. The Best Christmas Pageant Ever by Barbara Robinson (childrens) ***1/2

I also finished a quick children's audio book. I've been in the mood to listen to some holiday related audio books, this was one of the few that my library had available for download. It was a cute story about the horrible Herdman kids and what happens when they decide to go to Sunday school & take part in the Christmas pageant. This seems to be part of a series, since it was listed as book 1, I don't remember these from when I was a kid. It was a fun listen. I might even try to find more of the series.

Dez 18, 2009, 1:27 am

#49: I love the whole Three Pines series. IMHO, The Brutal Telling was the best of them, but still the others are very good.

Dez 18, 2009, 8:27 am

Heh. I've got a dissenting opinion over on my thread...8^}

I can see why folks like 'em. The author's style just didn't work for me. Maybe I need my mysteries a little grittier or something. Anyway, I'm glad you found a new series you like!

Dez 18, 2009, 2:25 pm

#51: I love being able to 'agree to disagree', Jim. I saw your dissenting opinion on your thread and will stick to my maxim: Not every book is for every body.

Dez 18, 2009, 6:29 pm

>49 staci426:: I read The Best Halloween Ever to my kids this Halloween. It also has the Herdman's in it - but it isn't quite as good as The Best Christmas Pageant Ever, in my opinion. I think Robinson has also written The Best School Year Ever.

Dez 20, 2009, 5:57 pm

#50 I've heard that about the series, but I still would like to read the rest.

#51 Like alcottacre said, not everyone can agree on every book. The mystery/investigation part for me was not the main draw, the setting was. It brought back fond memories of being in Quebec when I was in college & hearing the quebecois swear words put a smile on my face.

#53 Yep, I found those others also. Did not read them yet though. What age range would you say they would be good for? I don't have any kids myself, but have a 7 year old niece who I was thinking might like them.

Dez 20, 2009, 6:03 pm

65. Pompeii by Robert Harris (historical) ***1/2

This was a quick audio book. Historical fiction that takes place during the 4 days leading up to the eruption of Mt. Vesuvius in Ancient Rome. It was told from the point of view of the new aquarius, an engineer in charge of the aqueduct is trying to find out what is happening to the water. I thought this was pretty good. Hadn't read anything that took place in this time period before.

Dez 20, 2009, 8:59 pm

>54 staci426: - I think that Robinson's books would be great read-alouds for your 7 year old niece. My third grade son just read his first (THe Best School Year Ever), but even my kindergartner likes to hear them read aloud.

Dez 21, 2009, 1:21 am

#55: That one looks like one I would like. Thanks for the recommendation!

Dez 21, 2009, 9:34 am

#56 Thanks porch_reader, I will definitely look into them for her then. She might even be able to read them herself, I'm pretty sure she's reading above her grade level.

#57 You're welcomoe, it was a quick entertaining read.

Dez 21, 2009, 9:38 am

66. A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens (classics) ****

This was another quick audio listen. Finished in an afternoon. Of course everyone is familiar with the story of Ebenezer Scrooge and the ghosts of Christmases past, prestent & yet to come. This was my first time actually reading this one and even though I knew the story, I still enjoyed listening to it. Perfect little diversion for this time of year.

Dez 26, 2009, 5:29 pm

67. Hercule Poirot's Christmas by Agatha Christie (mystery) ***1/2

This was a quick audio listen. An old invalid invites his family to spend the holidays, then turns up dead. All of the family members have a motive, but which one did it? Hercule Poirot happened to be in town, so comes along with the local police to help solve the crime. I really enjoy Christie's work, and this was no exception. Perfect time of year to listen to this one.

Dez 27, 2009, 5:16 pm

68. The Water Babies by Charles Kingsley (childrens) ***

This was an ok read. I read it in two parts first, through dailylit emails, then finished the second half in an audio version from Librivox. This was an odd little fairy tale. I had never heard of it before, but found it in the 1001 books to read list. I know there was a lot more to this than the basic story, but I wasn't really paying close attention, it wasn't really holoding my interest.

Dez 28, 2009, 1:23 am

I hope your next read is better for you!

Dez 29, 2009, 5:52 am

Hi staci426, just delurking to say I loved The Water Babies as a kid but I think it was solely down to the lovely the water colours that accompanied it, cant remember the story at all!

Editado: Jan 2, 2010, 12:20 am

#63 I think that the pictures would have been a nice addition to the story & would have given it a different feel. I'll have to keep an eye out for an actual print version. I probably would have enjoyed it more if I had first heard it as a kid.

Jan 2, 2010, 12:20 am

My last two books that I finished today, but am counting for 2009 since I had read most of them both during November & December & hadn't gotten any reading done this past week since i was sick.

69. Primary Inversion by Catherine Asaro (science fiction) ***

I listened to an audio version of this. One of the drawbacks for me was the reader of the book, she wasn't my favorite, but she wasn't that bad that I couldn't finish listening. I was also disappointed in the book itself too, but I'm not really sure why. This was the first book in the Skolian Empire Series that was published, but it isn't first chronologically. This was my second book in the series that I've read, the first one being Schism which I really enjoyed. Primary Inversion features the same main character, Soz, but now she's an exprienced jaggernaut who I found whiny & annoying. I think I might want to try the series in chronological order.

70. Wyrd Sisters by Terry Pratchett (fantasy) ****

I've been rereading the Discworld books in order, but this was actually the first time I read this one. I thought it was great, probably my favorite in the series up to this point. This one featured the witches trying to save the kingdom of Lancre from the evil duke without meddling. Also had a lot of Shakespear comparisons in this one. Thoroughly entertaining & as always with Pratchett, many laugh out loud moments. Great book to end the year with.