Monday, March 3, 2008

Books of 2008 - February

I didn't read as much as I wanted to this month although I'm not sure why. Seems like I kept picking up books but not finishing them. Anyhow, I managed a dozen:

1. The Mission of Motherhoodby Sally Clarkson. Non-fiction. Really well written and very helpful.

2. Pamela by Samuel Richardson. Fiction. This book was written in 1740. It is as ridiculous now as it must have been then. Tedious but worth reading for the (unintentional) humor.

3. To-Do List by Sasha Cagen. Non-fiction. I love making lists and I enjoyed this book for the most part. I can't recommend it because of bad language and what I will euphemistically call "intimacy".

4. This Year You Write Your Novel by Walter Mosely. Non-fiction. Mr. Mosely's advice? Write every day. That's it. Sounds easy enough, right? Write every day.

5. The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald. Fiction. This is one of those "classics" that I somehow managed to miss in school. It was better than I thought it would be. Although I sure do wish I could strangle Tom and Daisy Buchanan (and their ilk)!

6. Alexander and the Wonderful, Marvelous, Excellent, Terrific 90 Days by Judith Viorst. Non-fiction. Memoir about three generations living under one roof for one summer. Very funny. Some unnecessary bad language.

7. Teaching Children by Diane Lopez. Non-fiction. Curriculum recommendations and ideas. Would be really good except for it is quite dated now. Lots of helpful lists. (Told you I like lists!)

8. Mansfield Park by Jane Austen. Fiction. This is only the second time I've read this all the way through. It's better than the recent movie, although that is faint praise. Actually I really liked this one on this read through. Fanny has grown on me as a heroine (once I could evict Billie Piper from my image of her!) but I'm afraid Edmund has not grown in my esteem at all. And how bad is it that I really like Henry Crawford? I must not be properly constructed.

9. A Room With A View by E.M. Forster. Fiction. This is another "classic" that I hadn't read before. This story engrossed me for about a day and a half. Now I'd really like to see the movie but it seems to be constantly checked out from our library. Who would think that such an old movie would be so popular?! A new version of this is going to be on PBS in a few months.

10. A Year With the Queen by Robert Hardman. Non-fiction. This is a companion book to a documentary. Excellent pictures and "behind the scenes" information on day to day life for the Royals. Have I mentioned I'm a major Anglophile / Royal Watcher?

11. House Hunting is Murder by Dorothy Taillon. Fiction. This is a book written by a lady that my in-laws used to live near. There's a decent premise here, but it could have used a good editor.

12. Simply Green Giving by Danny Seo. Non-fiction. Despite the fact that I am SO NOT a tree-hugger and I don't buy that whole "man made global warming" crock that Al Gore is dishing out, this book had several cute ideas and whether it saves the planet or not, I always enjoy a new way of looking at things or saving a few dollars.

So there you have it, twelve books in February!


Amy D said...

I have 2 questions:
#1 - How many pages did it take Mr. Mosely to tell his readers to write every day?

#2 - Do you think reading slow or reading fast is better for retention? I am reading a non-fiction book right now that I really want to absorb and remember, but I am taking it SO SLOWLY. When I read fiction I tend to read faster, and I wonder if I'm just making too much work out of my current non-fiction? lol What is your opinion?

Karen said...

Mr. Mosely wrote a very short book, Amy. :) Seriously, it had some good advice but the main idea was: just write.

I read everything at supersonic speed, according to my husband. I find fiction faster but not by much. If I really want to retain I have to take notes, so I keep a notebook handy. I can look back through my journal to see how much I really enjoyed a book by how many quotes I have from it.

Lulu said...

I completely agree with your feelings on mansfield park. I believe it was in November taht I read it and I feel the same way about the men. I could really care less about Edmund, but I did actually like Henry. It's definitely not my favorite of her works, but still good.

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