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Saturday, July 19, 2008

June 2008 Reading List

June was a great month for reading. I read twelve books, five of which were from the library. These days, since it costs more to keep my gas tank full, I'm trying to check out more library books. This means I have to read more and faster to get through them and still be able to read some of what I own.

The asterisks following each entry indicates on a 5-point scale how I liked it.

1. "Bonk" by Mary Roach (***)
2. "Enchantment" by Orson Scott Card (**)
3. "A Great and Terrible Beauty" by Libba Bray (****)
4. "The Outcast" by Sadie Jones (****)
5. "Are You There God, It's Me. Kevin." by Kevin Keck (*)
6. "New Moon" by Stephenie Meyer (**)
7. "Rebel Angels" by Libba Bray (****)
8. "Biblioholism" by Tom Raabe (*****)
9. "Dreamers of the Day" by Mary Doria Russell (****)
10. "Year of Wonders" by Geraldine Brooks (***)
11. "Sabriel" by Garth Nix (***)
12. "Eclipse" by Stephenie Meyer (***)

I'm six books into July so far. I've been reading a couple short youth books to get my numbers up. I didn't much reading done on vacation.

The weather in Anchorage is unusually cool for this time in July - by about 10 degrees. It's also wetter than usual. More like August weather. I'm triply glad I got a dose of heat and sun while in Seattle.


At 5:47 AM, Blogger K2 said...

Hi Linda-- Thanks for reading my book, even though you only gave it one star. :-( No worries though. I was actually hoping you could help me out with something. In looking over your list of authors, it makes perfect sense to me why my book might not be your cup of tea. I didn't give it the title that it has (in the publishing world, writers actually have very little power over such things) and I think the title is actually pretty misleading. Did you find that to be the case? Good luck with your own writing. Best, Kevin Keck

At 9:42 AM, Blogger Linda said...

Kevin - Hopefully you'll check this again and be able to read my response!

Of course you know how mortified I am that you found this. However, I am happy to answer your question: yes, I would have to say the title is misleading. I was expecting more of a "Traveling Mercies" (Anne Lamott), or "Take This Bread" by Sara Miles kind of book. One where a pot-smoking, partying, sexually aware, well-read,"thinking"-person, wild-child would take a step closer towards "faith" (however that may be defined). Lord knows we need more people like that at church.

Despite what you may have found in my library to suggest otherwise, I have a pretty strong stomach for all things literary. There were things I really enjoyed in your book. I loved the dialogue between you and the youth group members. My shirt to see more of that honest discussion.

In any case, I am gratified I bought your book new so you'll get a royalty from it. As far as my own writing - despite the odds of ever finding someone to publish my stuff, the thought of someone giving my work one star paralyzes me. You think a joint would help that?

Best of luck!!! -Linda

At 6:31 PM, Blogger K2 said...

Hi Linda-- thanks for your kind response. And don't worry about the one star. I've been pretty butchered on this book by some reviewers, though some have really liked it. There has been no middle road though, which is kind of interesting. Also interestingly, my first book was very sexually graphic, but it was universally loved. That really makes no sense to me.

I deliberately didn't make my own epiphany so obvious at the end because I didn't want to seem as if I were preaching. And I think that might have flown a little better with a different title (which I begged for, by the way-- no dice. I also begged for a different cover, and in fact had the former art director for Beverly Hills 90210 do a mock up-- no dice again. Oh well.)

Thanks for reading.

At 7:06 PM, Blogger Unknown said...

Linda, can you give me a brief review and synopsis of biblioholism? Why did it get five stars?

At 7:58 PM, Blogger Linda said...

epeevie: What I loved about much of "Biblioholism" is how it felt like a camera had been tracking my book-reading and book-buying obsession over the past several years. Unlike Basbanes books about bibliophiles ("Patience and Fortitude" and "A Gentle Madness"*), which seem more interested in obsessively collecting rare texts and tomes, and less concerned about actually reading them, Raabe's book hits much closer to home. It is about all books: new and used; genre, literary, and nonfiction. It is tongue-in-cheek, sarcastic, but never too far from the truth. That other people could feel about books and reading the way I do is always a bit of a delightful surprise to me. And, unlike other books about books I've read, "Biblioholism" isn't consumed with "title dropping" (as versus the function of "name dropping" in upper eschelon social circles). Very unpretentious.

I hope that helps. Have you read it? Did you have a different opinion?

(* "A Gentle Madness" has to be one of the best descriptions of bibliophilia I've ever heard; an irresistable title.)

At 6:41 AM, Blogger Unknown said...

No, I haven't read it. I didn't even really know what the word meant. I was curious because it was the only book you gave five stars to. There is a lot of overlap in our reading personalities (although you are a much more prolific book owner and reader than I am), and I figured I might want to check it out.

And now you have piqued my interest.


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