princess genevieve

jeudi, juin 15, 2006

Summer Reading

I've decided that lately I've been reading too many candy books. You know, the kinds of books you can read in a day, and they're like reading a tv show? Entertaining, yet mindless. Fun to read, yet not enriching.

So far this week, I've read four books. (A Good Yarn, by Debbie Macomber; Magic Lessons, by Justine Larbalestier; Burning the Map, by Laura Caldwell; Digging to America, by Anne Tyler) None of them were difficult reads. One had especially large print. Two of them made me to think a bit. I don't think I learned any new vocabulary words, unless you count the Australian slang I learned from Magic Lessons. (which, yeah, should count, right?)

I've been inspired by looking at a local high school's summer reading list. I'd like to compose my own summer reading list. Anyone have any suggestions for quality reading over the summer? I might start with the books on their summer reading list I've never read, but I'd like to add more to that. Anything is fine - your favorite book ever, your favorite book from high school or college, a book you read recently and thought was great. I read mostly fiction but if there's a nonfiction book you loved, toss that in too. I also read lots of YA and children's books so you don't need to shy away from those, either.

(and if your favorite book falls into the brain candy category, mention that too. I'm not giving up on those!)


At 6/15/2006 11:49 AM, Anonymous rebeccah said...

I have printed out Time Magazine's All-Time 100 Novels, which according to the Time Lit Critics, are the best English-language novels from 1923 to present. I disagree with some (Portnoy's Complaint is vile) but I'm trying to get through the ones I've missed.

At 6/15/2006 12:26 PM, Blogger Genevieve said...

thanks, Rebeccah. I looked through the list - there's a lot on there I haven't read, and some I haven't read since high school. That seems like one good starting point!

At 6/15/2006 2:26 PM, Blogger Amie said...

I guess some of these can be considered brain candy, but they are all very good.

The Time Traveler's Wife (can't remember author, I envy the brain that came up with this story!)

Abduction by Robin Cook (I couldn't put this one down)

A Tangled Web by L.M Montgomery (she weaves so many characters into this story)

At 6/15/2006 2:30 PM, Blogger Genevieve said...

Thanks, Amie! I have read (& loved) the Time Traveler's Wife but not the other two. (gasp, something by LM Montgomery that I haven't read yet!) I bet my dad has the Robin Cook book.

At 6/15/2006 2:32 PM, Blogger Amie said...

Yes, its one of her best!

Also, Abduction, is unlike Robin Cook's usual medical fiction. Totally different, yet facinating.

At 6/15/2006 8:28 PM, Anonymous katie said...

Hmmm... I have a short memory for novels, even good ones. Anything by Madeline L'Engle makes me happy, especially A Ring of Endless Light.

The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down is a non-fiction but often narrative book about the Hmong and American health care that is amazing.

At 6/15/2006 10:26 PM, Blogger Paisley said...

For a librarian, I don't read as many books as I think I should - too busy knitting!
I've just finished Year of Wonders by Geraldine Brooks (who just won the Pulitzer Prize for March) which was an interesting read (but not too challenging).
Anything by Stephen Fry I find worth reading just to enjoy the wonderful way that he has with stringing words together to make the English language sound really beautiful.
For more heavyweight material with an Australian slant, look out for anything by Peter Carey. Eg. Oscar and Lucinda, True History of the Kelly Gang, Illywacker.
Then there's the Billabong books (Australia's fictional equivalent to the Little House series) by Mary Grant Bruce (not sure whether they're available in the US).
That lot ought to keep you going for a while.

At 6/15/2006 11:45 PM, Anonymous Anonyme said...

I may sound too Oprah book club, but:
Poisonwood Bible
Catch-22 (IF you haven't already read)
Memoirs of a Geisha (ditto)
Songs in Ordinary Time
Country of the Pointed Firs
Cats Eye
I am Charlotte Simmons)
Black (Christopher Whitcomb... dc mystery fluff)
AND Prep (Fluff(esque))

I have a rule when I go to the library, "one fluff, one classic, and one non-fiction or autobiography"

At 6/16/2006 9:50 AM, Blogger Reuss said...

If you enjoyed the Time Traveller's Wife, you would probably enjoy "Ursula Under" (can't remember the author, I'm afraid). Recently I also loved "Never Let Me Go" (I think?) by Kazuo Ishiguro (sp?). In a more YA/kid's vein, the Bartimaeus trilogy by Jonathan Stroud is excellent, as is the His Dark Materials trilogy by Phillip Pullman.

On a more lifelong-loves, I re-read "The Life and Loves of a She-Devil" by Fay Weldon all the time, it's fabulous, and "A Prayer for Owen Meany" and "The World According to Garp" by John Irving. I also really loved the Cornish Trilogy by Robertson Davies.

At 6/16/2006 9:55 AM, Blogger Molly said...

I recently read "Never Let Me Go" and it was a decent read. Also I recommend "The History of Love" and my all time favorite book "The Power of One" by Bryce Courtenay. I'm sure I have mentioned all of those over email. I'll keep you posted if I find anything else especially engaging. I haven't had a book to read that I couldn't put down in quite some time!

At 6/16/2006 12:47 PM, Blogger Genevieve said...

Wow, you guys are great with the suggestions! Katie, I too love Madeleine L'Engle. A Ring of Endless Light was one of my favorites, too. I should check and see if she's got anything new I haven't read yet. Jayne gave me the Sprit Catches you a few years ago for my birthday or Christmas, cna't remember which, and I thought it was great, too.

Paisley, I also loved Year of Wonders, althoguh I thought the ending was a bit of a cop-out. Sort of like she got tired of the story and just ended it quite weirdly, I thought. I am on the waiting list at the library for March. I have not read Peter Carey or Stephen Fry so I will check those out. and I will definitely check out the Billabong books! I loved the Little house books so it would be cool to see the Australian version - if it's not available here I'll find some way to get them.

Anon, thanks for the long list. I've read some, but not all, so great additions. I have a similar library rule - one fluff, one travel memoire, one from the reading list section (the public school section) but lately I haven't been following it!

Reuss, thanks for your tips. I've read the John Irving books but not the others. Onto the list they go.

Molly, I have not read your picks. I had already put the History of Love onto my library hold list per your email, but I'll add the others too.

Thanks, kids! This ought to keep me occupied all summer!

At 6/17/2006 7:11 PM, Anonymous jayne said...

I recoomend Saving Fish From Drowning by Amy Tan (it's not her usual Asian-American experience book...this is fiction and really interesting), The Woman at the Washington Zoo by Majorie Williams, and Tell Them I Didn't Cry...I can't remember who wrote it...


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