Tuesday, 27 March 2007

100 reads

This post stolen from the lovely Jo....

Look at the list of books below.
*Bold/colour the ones you’ve read
*Italicize the ones you want to read - I've also put a little * next to these ones
*leave blank the ones that you aren’t interested in.
If you are reading this, tag your it!

1.The Da Vinci Code (Dan Brown)
2.Pride and Prejudice (Jane Austen)
3.To Kill A Mockingbird (Harper Lee)
4. Gone With The Wind (Margaret Mitchell)
5. The Lord of the Rings: Return of the King (Tolkien)*
6. The Lord of the Rings: Fellowship of the Ring (Tolkien)*
7. The Lord of the Rings: Two Towers (Tolkien)*
8. Anne of Green Gables (L.M. Montgomery)
9. Outlander (Diana Gabaldon)
10.A Fine Balance (Rohinton Mistry)
11.Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (Rowling)
12.Angels and Demons (Dan Brown)
13.Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (Rowling)
14. A Prayer for Owen Meany (John Irving)*
15. Memoirs of a Geisha (Arthur Golden)
16.Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone (Rowling)
17. Fall on Your Knees (Ann-Marie MacDonald)
18. The Stand (Stephen King)*
19. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (Rowling)
20. Jane Eyre (Charlotte Bronte)
21. The Hobbit (Tolkien)
22. The Catcher in the Rye (J.D. Salinger)
23. Little Women (Louisa May Alcott)
24. The Lovely Bones (Alice Sebold)*
25. Life of Pi (Yann Martel)*
26. The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy (Douglas Adams)*
27. Wuthering Heights (Emily Bronte)
28. The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe (C. S. Lewis)
29. East of Eden (John Steinbeck)*
30. Tuesdays with Morrie (Mitch Albom)
31. Dune (Frank Herbert)*
32. The Notebook (Nicholas Sparks)*
33. Atlas Shrugged (Ayn Rand)
34. 1984 (Orwell)
35. The Mists of Avalon (Marion Zimmer Bradley)
36. The Pillars of the Earth (Ken Follett)
37. The Power of One (Bryce Courtenay)
38. I Know This Much is True (Wally Lamb)
39. The Red Tent (Anita Diamant)
40. The Alchemist (Paulo Coelho)
41. The Clan of the Cave Bear (Jean M. Auel)*
42. The Kite Runner (Khaled Hosseini)
43. Confessions of a Shopaholic (Sophie Kinsella)
44. The Five People You Meet In Heaven (Mitch Albom)
45. Bible (All of it) {most of it}
46. Anna Karenina (Tolstoy)*
47. The Count of Monte Cristo (Alexandre Dumas)
48. Angela’s Ashes (Frank McCourt)
49. The Grapes of Wrath (John Steinbeck)*
50. She’s Come Undone (Wally Lamb)*
51. The Poisonwood Bible (Barbara Kingsolver)*
52. A Tale of Two Cities (Dickens)
53. Ender’s Game (Orson Scott Card)
54. Great Expectations (Dickens)
55. The Great Gatsby (Fitzgerald)*
56. The Stone Angel (Margaret Laurence)
57. Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (Rowling)
58. The Thorn Birds (Colleen McCullough)*
59. The Handmaid’s Tale (Margaret Atwood)
60. The Time Traveller’s Wife (Audrew Niffenegger)
61. Crime and Punishment (Fyodor Dostoyevsky)*
62. The Fountainhead (Ayn Rand)
63. War and Peace (Tolsoy)*
64. Interview With The Vampire (Anne Rice)
65. Fifth Business (Robertson Davis)
66. One Hundred Years Of Solitude (Gabriel Garcia Marquez)
67. The Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants (Ann Brashares)
68. Catch-22 (Joseph Heller)*
69. Les Miserables (Hugo) In French!
70. The Little Prince (Antoine de Saint-Exupery) In French!
71. Bridget Jones’ Diary (Fielding)
72. Love in the Time of Cholera (Marquez)
73. Shogun (James Clavell)
74. The English Patient (Michael Ondaatje)*
75. The Secret Garden (Frances Hodgson Burnett)
76. The Summer Tree (Guy Gavriel Kay)
77. A Tree Grows in Brooklyn (Betty Smith)
78. The World According To Garp (John Irving)
79. The Diviners (Margaret Laurence)
80. Charlotte’s Web (E.B. White)
81. Not Wanted On The Voyage (Timothy Findley)
82. Of Mice And Men (Steinbeck)
83. Rebecca (Daphne DuMaurier)
84. Wizard’s First Rule (Terry Goodkind)
85. Emma (Jane Austen)
86. Watership Down (Richard Adams)
87. Brave New World (Aldous Huxley)
88. The Stone Diaries (Carol Shields)
89. Blindness (Jose Saramago)
90. Kane and Abel (Jeffrey Archer)
91. In The Skin Of A Lion (Ondaatje)
92. Lord of the Flies (Golding)
93. The Good Earth (Pearl S. Buck)*
94. The Secret Life of Bees (Sue Monk Kidd)
95. The Bourne Identity (Robert Ludlum)
96. The Outsiders (S.E. Hinton)
97. White Oleander (Janet Fitch)
98. A Woman of Substance (Barbara Taylor Bradford)
99. The Celestine Prophecy (James Redfield)
100.Ulysses (James Joyce)*

Some of the ones I have left alone, I just haven't heard of...a couple of the titles look appealing, but I think I shall have a look at them first.

So, how many have you read?

Thursday, 8 March 2007

Making it like home

Well, I've most deffinately moved in here....

and today I managed put up a few shelves, moved in some furniture; even managed to hang a picture or two.

As you can see, It's far from finished yet... I still have to move in all my books...gotta install the cooker and the suchlike.. but it's looking more homely already....
I have to say.. I do like it here.

All those of you who have been popping in and leaving comments, you will notice that I have linked you as book club members. We dont have a set book every month.. but hey.. we potter about talking books and general chit-chat.. what is that if not a book club?.. Anyway.. any suggestions for a name for us?

Let me know if there's any links you'd like me to stick on the ole notice board.

...all this hard work deserves some wine.. dont you think?


For Le Laquet

My lovely (and patient) shoe-lovin', Swansea sister....

Who mentioned that she could do with some pointers to the directions of some good books...
It's been a little while, so, forgive my slowness sis!

Here are some of the books I've enjoyed recently:
Kafka on the shore - Haruki Murakami
Shipwrecked Sailor - Gabriel Garcia Marquez
The Horrific sufferings of the mind reading monster Hercules Barefoot His wonderful love and his terrible hatred - Carl-Johan Vallgren
Midsummer night's dream - ole shakey
Slaughterhouse 5 - Kurt Vonnegut
A moveable feast - Hemmingway
Children of men - P D James
Perfume - Patrick Suskind
Careful what you wish for - Alexandra Potter
All the Anita Blake Vampire hunter novels - Laurell K Hamilton
The secret of crickley hall - James Herbert
The observations - Jane Harris
The testament of Gideon Mack - James Robertson
The Historian - Elizabeth Kostova

I'd also highly reccommend The Time Traveller's wife by Audrey Niffenegger, The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini (excellent book) and Chart Throb by Ben Elton

Hope theres some in there that you havent read and do fancy.


Book Club meeting

A surprisingly uneventful meeting....

We didnt get banned from anywhere, which was a good start for us (!) and our chat was mostly... umm.. sortof.....well, partly about books. We did have a good catch-up with what's going on in each other's lives.....

we got around to the books eventually.

And we had a new member...a teeny tiny and very cute, adorable new member who is the daughter of G (a member who has been with us from the start).

I stand by the marks I gave last months books.

I did eventually finish the Gideon Mack book and it seems that I was the only one that liked it in our group; every one else preferred The Observations.

This months choices look like this:

The Interpretation of a Murder by Jed Rubenfield
The woman in white by Wilkie Collins.

Both look pretty good and I have a feeling my MIR may like the Jed Rubenfield choice.

I did a lot of bookwhoring yesterday...more on that later. But suffice to say, No more books till next months book club choices....

At least I'm not going to run out of books!

Monday, 5 March 2007

Playing catch-up...Last months book choices

Last month, I was the one responsible for choosing our reading matter....

I wasn't however, responsible for getting us banned from Charlie's Chowder House. That would have been my good mate, Maria.

I'll not go into full details.. lets just say that men's bathrooms were involved and an irrate chowder house owner.....

On to the book choices.

The first book I read was The Observations by Jane Harris and I found it to be an okay book. I've read a lot worse, but I've read a lot better too. It had enough in it to intrigue me to reading til the end; which was, on the whole, satisfactory and the majority of the characters were like-able enough. On the whole, I think I'd give it a 6 out of 10.

I haven't yet finished the second book which is The testament of Gideon Mack by James Robertson. This one I think is by far a more superior book. The writing style is more pleasing, the story is interesting and although when I began the book, I didnt expect to like the character of Gideon, I actually do. I can't give a fair rating yet, as I have yet to finish the book...but, judging by what i've read so far, I'd give it an 8 out of 10.

Our next meeting is this wednesday, and I'll be sure to post the new choices.


Recent book whoring

Wednesday is typically a book whoring day....
It's when I have time to myself to browse contentedly in book shops, and then with my lovely new purchases nestled together in their carrier bags, I head off to my favourite coffee shop.

Last weeks purchases were:
Bel Canto - Ann Patchett
Extremely loud and incredibly close - Jonathen Safran Foer
Orhan Pamuk - Snow
Suite Francaise - Irene Nemirovsky
The mathematics of love - Emma Darwin
Ratcatcher - James McGee
The Swarm - Frank Shatzing.

I also picked up the last few books that I ordered through my local independant bookshop.
I've recently re-discovered my absolute delight in horror novels - my reading since I joined the book group being guided to less bloody paths - and having thoroughly enjoyed the Anita Blake vampire hunter books (thanks to the Peanut Queen) I orderd two more horror series: the books by Kim Harrison and the books by Kelley Armstrong.
The last books I picked up were:
For a few demons more - Kim Harrison
Stolen - Kelley Armstrong
Dimestore Magic -Kelley Armstrong.
Methinks I need a lot of wine and chocolate to go with this little lot...

Thursday, 1 March 2007


Here is a little story told to me more than ten years ago....

At the time, along with WHSmith's, there were two other main places to buy books from - two independant book stores. One was called Paperback Parade (now an outdoor persuits store) and the other was called Peter's bookshop (now just an empty building). Once a week, I would end up in one or another of these bookshops; if one didnt have the book i was looking for, I would happily toddle along to the other, possibly to WHSmiths or even the bookstall in the local market. There was lots of choice in - dare I say it? - the good ole days.

Of all these shops, my personal favourite was Peter's. The choice was always pretty good, the people working in the shop actually liked to read and could hold a good conversation about various books and authors. They would also remember their clientele and their reading preferences, keeping books under the counter til they could be collected, without even being asked.

One time - near Christmas, if memory serves, I was indulging my book loving self, spending ages merely browsing, every so often choosing something appealing, until I had an armload of books to take to the counter.
"Christmas presents?" The cashier asked (I'm afraid I dont remember her name, but I have a suspicion it might have been Mary)
"Yes." I said, smiling, "For me"
She laughed a little. "Those are the best kind."
We chatted for a little while and then she told me about a gentleman customer of hers who had been coming into the shop every week all year, and twice a week since the beginging of November. Every visit, he would purchase a £5 book token. (Books back then cost about a fiver each)
He had told Mary that his fiancee was a complete book worm and that he planned on presenting her with all these book tokens just before christmas so that she could come in to the shop and buy exactly what she wanted.
I had thought this the most wonderful and romantic gesture possible. I could think of nothing I would like more than to receive a surprise like that.

A couple of years later, I recounted this little story to my boyfriend, hoping that he would get the huge "hint hint".. but of course, it fell on deaf ears.
"Bit daft of him wasnt it?" he'd said. "why didnt he work out what he was going to spend on her, keep the money in the bank till the end of the year - he'd have the interest that way. He'd have saved himself all the journey's to the shop too."
I remember sighing...so much for romance...
My boyfriend continued, warming to his subject..."And if he'd given her money instead, she wouldnt be limited to just buying books." (he completely missed the point) "plus," he continued, unabated "If she got the tokens, or money after christmas, she could buy stuff in the January sales and get more for her money."
I remember him smiling, totally satisfied with himself.
His advice was practical, it had to be said... but as for as being romantic goes,
Casanova he was/is not.

I do think I may treat myself to that particular gift....