Friday, December 29, 2006

2006 in review

I am a little ashmed of my 2006 books in review list.

I only read 16 books this year. (this may be because I didn't start my list until August).

But, this year was better than last, coming in with only 10 books! That's just pitiful! 2007 will be a much better year!

Top 5 books read this year:

The Namesake -- Jhumpa Lahiri
Extremely Loud and Incrediably Close-- Johnathan Safron Foer
The Secret Histroy-- Donna Tarrt
Push -- Sapphaire
Prep -- Curtis Sittenfeld

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

not enough bite for me.....

Finished Man of My Dreams. Eh... it reminded me of The Girls Guide to Hunting and Fishing -- by Melissa Banks, which I enjoyed.

I couldn't quite decide of I sympathized with Hannah or of I was just annoyed by her. There were certain points where, me being a 26 year old woman, I could whole-heartedly relate and other points where I just wanted to roll my eyes and tell Hannah to wake up and quit being such a whinny little girl.

I didn't enjoy this book as I did Prep, though I times I thought that I was just reading a grown up version of Lee Fiora, but then I realized that Lee Fiora had more balls than Hannah. Maybe this is why I liked Prep better. I just plain enjoyed the characters more. I don't do well with characters where I am obviously supposed to sympathize with. Hannah just didn't have enough, ah.. bite for me.

I did however like the layout of the book up until the last section. I disliked that the book was wrapped up in a letter written to her therapist. It was too... cliché for me. Does every young woman in this world need a straight talking therapist?

Up next:

I feel like a lot of people I know have already read this and loved it.. guess I am getting on the bandwagon.

Saturday, December 16, 2006

More Sittenfeld....

Digging to America -- Finished. Not my new favorite or anything, but decent enough.

Next up:

I really enjoyed Prep, so I thought I might give Sittenfeld another a go!

Monday, December 11, 2006

Farsi vs. English -- intresting story lines

Digging to America is going well. I am about half-way through. I have a hard time relating to certain topics in the book, but others just seem to hit home. I have never been a big "baby" person personally. So for me, I get bored when that seems to be the topic at the time. But on the other hand, working with immigrant and refugees, I love the story line of the Iranians, especially the mother.

I do however like how the character development is going. Tyler does an excellent job at letting the reader get a glimpse into each characters world. It adds a lot of depth to the book.

So-far-so-good. It's keeping my attention for the moment.

Thursday, December 7, 2006

Next Up...

Finished The Secret History. Easily fits into my top favorites.

Next up:

Digging to America by Anne Tyler

Tuesday, December 5, 2006

The Secret History

Currently Reading:

I am almost finished with Donna Tartt's The Secret History. (About 75 pages to go). I have to say, I am quite surprised. This book is fascinating! I have never been one for mysteries much (though it isn't quite a mystery per-say, considering Tartt gives away the ending of the book within the first 20 pages or so) but honestly, this book is slowly working it's way in to my top 10. I am fascinated by the characters. The story line just keeps me tied in.

The book is big (560 pages or so) and wasn't sure how I would do with it. Obviously, I have blown my 10-day plan out of the water, but I am not worried. (I have a few short books coming my way soon.)

In this back of the copy I have, there is an interview with Tartt. I was not at all impressed. She seemed a bit stand-offish and some of her answers were, ah, a bit snotty. And she's a bit scary looking.. reminds me a bit of Flannery O'Connor. (I love O'Connor's works by the way, maybe this isn't a coincidence!)

I try not to judge a book by its author, if I can help it. Though being the English major I was, it just happens. Look what has happened with James Frey.... now (almost) everyone hates that book. (But I blame Oprah more than him on that one.... but that's me).. Okay enough on that subject for now!

This book reminds me a bit of "Prep", by Curtis Sittenfeld. A more elaborate, drugged up, evocative, sophisticated, version.

Anyhow, I recommend it.

Most Wanted

If anyone is feeling this generous this Holiday season here are the top 10 books that I desperatley want, but can't justify buying for myself. (And I will never get them off bookswapping because I am like, 95th on the waiting list)

1. What is the What -- Dave Eggers (I want this one badly!)

2. Windows on the World -- Frederic Beigbeder

3. A Piece of Cake -- Cupcake Brown

4. The Myth if You and Me -- Leah Stweart

5. Sweetness in the Belly -- Camilla Gibb

6. A Spot of Bother -- Mark Haddon

7. All Aunt Hagar's Children -- Edward P. Jones

8. John -- Cynthia Lennon

9. Burned Alive: A Victim of the Law of Men -- Souad

10. Mr. Muo's Travelling Couch -- Dai Sijie