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2019 Old & New Classic Challenge > Leni's 2019 Old and New from the Shelf

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message 1: by Leni (last edited Jan 10, 2019 03:17AM) (new)

Leni Iversen (leniverse) | 1184 comments Old School Stories: (1280p.)

1. Alexander Pushkin - The Queen of Spades and Other Stories (300p.)
2. The Complete Folk & Fairy Tales of the Brothers Grimm (440p.)
3. Wu Cheng'en - The Journey to the West, Revised Edition, Volume 1 (540p.)


New School Stories: (395p.)

1. Angela Carter - Fireworks: Nine Profane Pieces (73p.)
2. Philip K. Dick's Electric Dreams: Volume 1 (225p.)
3. Octavia E. Butler - Unexpected Stories (97 p.)


Wildcard Non-Fiction (2691p.)

1. George Eliot: Essays and Leaves from a Notebook (382p.)
2. Primo Levi - The Periodic Table (195p.)
3. Simone de Beauvoir - Det annet kjønn (778p.)
4. The Autobiography of Malcolm X (501p.)
5. T.E. Lawrence - Seven Pillars of Wisdom (665p.)
6. Judith Butler - Gender Trouble: Feminism and the Subversion of Identity (170p.)


Alternates: (368p.)

1. Jack London - The God of His Fathers: Tales of the Klondyke (92p.)
2. Marmaduke William Pickthall - As Others See Us (276p.)


message 2: by Leni (last edited Dec 11, 2018 09:01AM) (new)

Leni Iversen (leniverse) | 1184 comments I must be a glutton for punishment and failure. I just can't resist. Let's just call this challenge a statement of intention, and see how it goes.

I have three reading resolutions for 2019:
1. Read (more) books that have been languishing unread on my shelves (or on my Kindle) for a while.
2. Read (more) non-fiction.
3. Read (more) short story collections.

2019, I dub thee 'Year of the Shelf'.

So here's what I'll do. My Wildcards will all be non-fiction books that I already own. I want to put together a good mix of biography, philosophy, history, science, and essays. Essays are the short stories of non-fiction, so that's like all my three resolutions in one.

Old School and New School have to have at least one short story collection each. Not sure about the rest. Don't think I want to read as many as 6 short story collections, and I'm not sure I even have three Old School collections.

My Alternates will be one non-fiction and one short story collection.


message 3: by Candi (new)

Candi (candih) | 743 comments I'm glad I'm not the only glutton for punishment, Leni. I can't resist a challenge, and I almost never complete one! I like the way you are setting this up. I would like to read more non-fiction this year, although I don't know that I really picked any for the challenges.

Good luck!


message 4: by Bob, Short Story Classics (new)

Bob | 4816 comments Mod
I like your resolutions and look forward to your list. Good Luck!!


message 5: by Kathleen (new)

Kathleen | 3668 comments What a great idea, Leni! I'm looking forward to your picks and your reviews. I'd particularly like to read more philosophy and essays.

Eliot's complete essays! Bet that will be good. The only collection I could find at my library was: A Writer's Notebook, 1854 1879, And Uncollected Writings, so I'll probably read that one. Apparently no one on earth (or Goodreads anyway) has read it yet, so hmmm...

Have fun planning!


message 6: by Leni (new)

Leni Iversen (leniverse) | 1184 comments Kathleen wrote: "What a great idea, Leni! I'm looking forward to your picks and your reviews. I'd particularly like to read more philosophy and essays.

Eliot's complete essays! Bet that will be good. The only col..."


Well, it's not all her essays, but she curated the collection herself and insisted that any other essays she wrote prior to 1859 should never be published again. I have the second edition from 1884. :D I can't really articulate how much I look forward to reading it. It's the oldest book I own.


message 7: by Leni (new)

Leni Iversen (leniverse) | 1184 comments Options for non-fiction:

The Second Sex - I read the first part during a buddy read a couple of years back, but I really want to finish the book, and read part one over again

I love Plato's dialogues, and have his complete borks, but haven't read them all. I actually haven't read Symposium which is one of the big ones.

The Life of Charlotte Brontë by Gaskell. I was considering doing a thing here, where I would read this biography as well as something else by Gaskell (probably Mary Barton) and something by Charlotte Brontë (I've only read Jane Eyre). I might still keep that idea for another year.

The Autobiography of Malcolm X - I'm keen on this one.

The Periodic Table - More essays! Science essays!

Seven Pillars of Wisdom History/Religion? By Lawrence of Arabia! I also have his doctoral thesis Crusader Castles

Daughter Of Earth And Water: A Biography Of Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley - more biography!

The Moon's a Balloon - autobiography, maybe I shouldn't fill up on bios.

I have three works by Judith Butler on my Kindle, two of them seem to build on/reconsider the first - Gender Trouble: Feminism and the Subversion of Identity so that looks like the one to start with.

Hidden Figures: The Untold Story of the African American Women Who Helped Win the Space Race - a newer book, but dealing with history/race/gender

As Others See Us by a man with the amazing name Marmaduke William Pickthall - stories/essays about Egypt in the time leading up to WW1.

More philosophy? I've been meaning to read Nietzsche's Beyond Good and Evil and On the Genealogy of Morals

And I have spent years being intimidated by Heidegger. I have both an introductory text book on Heidegger and a translation of his Sein und Zeit. But I honestly don't think I can handle him in the same year as I make another attempt on The Second Sex.

Uh, maybe I should just stop there and try to narrow it down.


message 8: by Kathleen (new)

Kathleen | 3668 comments Oh my--Lawrence of Arabia. I've been thinking about that one for years and really must read it. And I did start Beyond Good and Evil recently, but decided I needed a little warming up to that one. All fascinating choices, Leni. Enjoy!


message 9: by Brina (new)

Brina I loved Queen of Spades and other stories. Enjoy!


message 10: by Leni (new)

Leni Iversen (leniverse) | 1184 comments I think I have made my non-fiction choices now. So difficult!

Now the question is what to do about my remaining old and new. More short stories? Maybe novels that are a bit episodic in nature? Something I meant to read in 2018? lol

The Spouse and I have talked about reading all four volumes of Journey to the West together, one per quarter. I might put the first one on this challenge: The Journey to the West, Revised Edition, Volume 1 by Wu Cheng'en

I've been meaning to read Le Morte d'Arthur by Thomas Malory for a couple of years, ever since I bought this gorgeous illustrated edition. But it's a proper doorstopper of a book, and I was going to avoid attempting too many of those.

There's The Once and Future King by T.H. White which I meant to read in 2018. That's a sort of multiple stories in one, so it fits my theme, sort of. And I accidentally bought one with a truly horrific cover so I need to read it and give it away to a charity shop. Also, my daughter wants to read it. So I think this is a good candidate.


message 11: by Bob, Short Story Classics (new)

Bob | 4816 comments Mod
Looks like you have some short stories on you list now, but you can never have to many. I hope to read The Once and Future King someday and you can use the cover for Bingo.


message 12: by Leni (new)

Leni Iversen (leniverse) | 1184 comments Bob wrote: "Looks like you have some short stories on you list now, but you can never have to many. I hope to read The Once and Future King someday and you can use the cover for Bingo."

LOL I interpreted the Bingo square as being a nice cover, but of course it's possible to choose a book because the cover is so ugly. XD


message 13: by Leni (new)

Leni Iversen (leniverse) | 1184 comments Turns out my Kindle contains books I don't remember downloading. So now I have added a Philip K. Dick collection and a novella+short story by Octavia Butler to my New School, and the complete Grimm fairy tales to my old school.

I now only need one more book for Old School. I was going to use The Island of the Mighty on the strength that it is Welsh mythology, even if it was published in 1972. But I had a look at the introduction and it is more like a retelling than simply a written account of oral myths. Rather, Walton says that she has "removed nothing but added a lot". So... I might just go with Journey to the West here, even if it isn't short stories. It is at least a physical book on my physical bookshelf.


message 14: by Bob, Short Story Classics (last edited Dec 19, 2018 12:45PM) (new)

Bob | 4816 comments Mod
Leni wrote: "Bob wrote: "Looks like you have some short stories on you list now, but you can never have to many. I hope to read The Once and Future King someday and you can use the cover for Bingo."

LOL I interpreted the Bingo square as being a nice cover, but of course it's possible to choose a book because the cover is so ugly. XD..."



One persons trash is another's art, eye of the beholder and all that.


message 15: by Aubrey (new)

Aubrey (korrick) | 2437 comments 'Gender Trouble' is a nice choice. Makes me think I should get around to reading that in 2019 myself.


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