Sunday, March 8, 2009

TSS Books Read This Week


Sunday Salon may be found here.

Not the best reading week, only one book completed, so I threw in my first reading challenges update for the year.

The Gargoyle**** by Andrew Davidson

I really enjoyed this story about a burn victim who is befriended during his long hospital stay by another patient who's gone home but continues to visit in between her manic sessions of sculpting gargoyles from stone. She tells him stories about having met him in a previous life that are fascinating. The story takes hold of you and doesn't let you go. Highly recommended.

I am currently reading The Sum of Our Years by Isabel Allende, a memoir in epistolary form to her beloved daughter Paula, now deceased. I listened to her interviewed by Book Club Girl and
Isabel is an exuberant, intelligent and a delightful person to listen to.

I have started The Monsters of Templeton by Lauren Groff. My first book by this author.

I am also working my way (slowly) through Ulysses by James Joyce. Pray for me.

Little Bee by Chris Cleave is forthcoming from LibrayThing Early Reviewers. It is set in Nigeria and I can't wait to read and review it.

Reading Challenge updates: as of March 1/09

New Authors - 30/50
Library - 19/50
War Through the Generations - 5/5 completed*
Art History - 2/6
New Classics - 3/6 ended Jan.31, 2009 - incomplete (joined very late)
E W's New Classics - 14/100...ongoing
Man Booker Prize - 11/41...ongoing
Jewish Literature - 4/4 completed*
Latin America - 2/4
Lost in Translation - 6/6 completed*
Themed - 2/4-6 with music reference in title
Martel-Harper - 1/2
Canada Reads - 2/5 ended Feb.15, 2009 - incomplete (library books not available in time)
2nd Canadian Books - 13/13 completed* + bonus 8 books
Orange Prize - 5/17 winners, 6/71 shorlist, 18/170 longlist...ongoing
What's In a Name - 5/6
18th & 19th Century Women Writers - 2/4
What an Animal - 6/6 completed* + 9 bonus books
Whitcoulls - 0/4
German - 0/6-12
Pulitzer Project - 9/82...ongoing
TBR - 5/12
Chunkster - 4/6
Well Seasoned - 3/3 completed* + 14 bonus books
Nine in 09 - 1/9
Giller Prize - 4/15 winners, 8/74 shortlist...ongoing
Costa Awards - 6/38 winners, 3/shortlist...ongoing
Dewey - 1/5
Diversity - 6/12
LibrayThing Authors - 1/5
Numbers Challenge - 2/5
Book Awards - 6/10
London 2012 - 16/202
Nobels - 1/5
Notable Books - 32...ongoing
Classics - 2/4
Cultures - 6/21
Colourful - 0/9, joined March 1
Through the Seasons - 0/16, joined March 1
Orbis Terrarum-starts March 1, 10 books from 10 countries
1% Well Read - starts March 1, 13 books, 135 read to date
Compass Points - starts March 1, 4 books
Oprah Picks - 30 read of 61 owned
Pages read - 9,000

The Year of Readers for Camel Book Charity - 31 books read to date, sponsor needed

I welcome recommendations of good literary fiction at any time. If you know one that fits any of my reading challenges I'd be glad to consider it.

How's your week going?

17 comments:

  1. That's an awful lot of challenges. You are brave. I bought The Gargoyle at the beginning of the year, but I haven't got around to reading it yet. I have heard mixed reviews about it, so I am glad to hear you like it.

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  2. Wow. You have a lot of challenges on your plate. I can barely get through a few! :)

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  3. I loved the Gargoyle too. After listening to the interview with Isabel Allende, I added Paula and The Sum of Our Years to my wish list. I hope this week is a great reading week for you.

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  4. I haven't read The Gargoyle yet but I've been hearing some great reviews about it this weekend.I enjoyed The Monsters of Templeton and can't wait to know what you think of it.

    Have a great week!

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  5. I'm surprised to see how many challenges even exist. It's impressive to see how much time and effort you put into your reading. I, quite frankly, have little time as it is to read. To do so in an organized manner? That's where the problem arises...

    Still, good luck with your reads. I have a feeling I'll need to read "Ulysses" sometime in the near future... Is it a really difficult read?

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  6. It looks like you are making good progress on your challenges, Sandra. I haven't taken a close look at my own progress. I'm know I'm doing well in some, but not in others. There's still time yet though!

    I am looking forward to reading The Gargoyle this year. I've heard such great things about it. The Monsters of Templeton is another one I really want to read.

    I hope you have a great week!

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  7. You are brave - Ulysses and all those challenges - good luck! The Gargoyle was one of my favourite books of last year and I was quite taken by The Monsters of Templeton too. The Allende is definitely on my wishlist.

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  8. Oh I put The Gargoyle on my TBR list after reading a review of it in Bookmarks. I have heard many mixed reviews; I'm glad to hear that you enjoyed it!

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  9. btw, I'm so impressed with all of your reading challenges and organizational skills with them! *gasp* how in the world do you do it?

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  10. WOW I think you should take a prize of some sort for participating in so many amazing challenges!!You're reading list impressive!
    Kudos!

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  11. *Scrapgirl,Mari, christina, everyone:
    Thank you but please don't be impressed. I should put a person information post up for those who ask. I am disabled and confined at home so my only activity, besides blogging, is reading. I have the luxury of reading time that the rest of you don't have, and a good thing you don't really.

    *bermudaonion: I was only half way through the book by the time of the interview, but wasn't that a treat? I own a copy of Paula which I have yet to read too. If you don't mind a used book I can send you mine when I'm done with them. You may want lovely new ones, or hardcover but just let me know if you do want them.

    N. Vassillis: I don't often write reviews of non ARCs but I will do a mini review just for you for Monsters when I'm finished.

    An Anonymous Child: Thank you, and no Ulysses is not a really difficult read. I am 59 now and have no problem keeping track of who's speaking (a common complaint about this book) or what the language means. In my thirties I simply was bored by his playing with words so much instead driving the story forward. I think it's a good experience but I'm not at all convinced it's the best book ever as so many claim. Mind you I may feel different about it after the payoff-the climax and ending. I'll post about it when I'm done-and hope that none of my readers are Joyce experts. lol

    *Literary Feline,fleurfisher:
    : Thank you. We seem to read many of the same books, I must have good taste. :)

    Rebachin: Thank you so much but don't be too impressed (see frist note). And I'm delighted to have a new follower. Welcome.

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  12. I'm envious of your challenges list. You go! I have The Gargoyle on my TBR list.

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  13. That is a lot of challenges!

    I loved The Gargoyle and Monsters of Templeton.

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  14. Congrats on completing the WWII challenge! I've officially completed it as well, but I plan to keep on reading related books for the rest of the year. Good luck with the rest of the challenges!

    --Anna
    Diary of an Eccentric

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  15. I have this on my list for this year too, but for the past month I've been thinking of not going on with it, after having read an excerpt of the first chapter and finding something I didn't like. But that was being rather closed-minded of me, of course.

    Now that you're recommending it Sandra, I guess I'll put it back on queue.

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  16. Hey there, new follower to your blog here. Just thought I would say hello and share some love for The Gargoyle. I have a review for it here if you're interested.

    Happy Reading!

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  17. It's been a while since I read The Gargoyle, but I remember I really loved it. I need to check and see if Andrew Davidson has written anything else. I would love to read more if they are as good as this one.

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