Challenge: 50 Books discussion

2010 > Cathy of PA 50 Book Challenge

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message 1: by Cathy (new)

Cathy Here we go 2010.....tracking by month to keep up with the pace.

January begun:

1. Addition by Toni Jordan
2. The Physick Book of Deliverance Dane by Elizabeth

I will also be including my audiobook that was begun over the holidays, but is extremely long(36 discs) with a good portion being completed in 2010, well soon to be completed this year.

I only made it to 35 books last year, but did not have this group's challenge to spur me onto greater heights in personal literature.

Avid PA reader

message 2: by Megan (new)

Megan | 3 comments I read The Physick Book of Deliverance Dane last year. What did you think about it? I found that at times it was a little bit boring and the story at times was a little too lengthy!

message 3: by Cathy (new)

Cathy I was somewhat disappointed with this book, too. I thought it was interesting that the author had a vested interest in creating this story because of her researched "Salem" lineage. I thought the story meandered abit and could have been better written with a greater opportunity to connect to readers.

Actually, last January I read a similar-themed book that my sister recommended that was abit shorter and more enjoyable. It was called "The Shape of Mercy" by Susan Meissner.

message 4: by Cathy (new)

Cathy 3. World Without End (Audiobook) by Ken Follett

Good story, but the longest audiobook I've ever done...45 1/2 hours. The narrator John Lee was great.

4. My Lobotomy: A Memoir by Howard Dully and Charles Fleming

Not great writing, but a disturbing journey of a misunderstood, unloved twelve-year old boy who received a transorbital("ice-pick") lobotomy and his life-long search for understanding and peace.

The last chapter recreates his NPR interview of Nov. 2005 in detail. After completing the book I went to and found and listened to the complete recording under 'My Lobotomy': Howard Dully's Journey.

Fascinating and disturbing memoir.

message 5: by Cathy (new)

Cathy 5. Dreams of My Russian Summers by Andrei Makine

message 6: by Cathy (new)

Cathy 6. A Lesson Before Dying by Ernest J. Gaines

In honor of Martin Luther King Day I will be reading several books by above African-American author this month. Loved the above classic and will now begin "The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman". This one was made into a pretty good movie in the 70's(I'm showing my age) starring Cecily Tyson as the main character. Does anyone remember seeing the movie way back when or do you have any comments on books written by Ernest J. Gaines?

message 7: by Cathy (last edited Jan 18, 2010 03:52PM) (new)

message 8: by Cathy (new)

Cathy 8. Digging to America by Anne Tyler....audiobook

Light, but enjoyable story for the car ride to work.

message 9: by Cathy (new)

Cathy 9.In My Father's House by Ernest J. Gaines....Third by this author. Enjoyed this one more than book #7. Actually, preferred the 1970's movie to book #7(very unusual). I loved "A Lesson Before Dying".

It was nice to read several books by the author and I hope to get one more in before the close of 2010.

message 10: by Cathy (new)

Cathy 10. A Curse Dark as Gold by Elizabeth C. Bunce

message 11: by Cathy (new)

Cathy 11. Prayers for Sale by Sandra Dallas. I had not read anything by this author and probably would not had chosen to if not the selection of my bookclub. I was pleasantly surprised by a tale of a frienship of an older woman of a high-country mining town during the Great Depression with that of a young, lonely newcomer to her community.

A special friendship develops between the two women through their mutual interest in quilting and the older women's ability to retell or weave stories of her life sewn together like the quilts. Her lifetime of stories provide the tapestry of the book and Nit, the younger woman, being young and curious has an ear and heart for the stories that envelop her into this new harsh mountain community and lifestyle. The stories provide healing for both women..... "Quilts are like lives. They're made up of a lot a little pieces."

A cozy read for this winter season.

message 12: by Cathy (new)

Cathy 12. The Unit byNinni Holmqvist. Engaging, quick read of a dystopian society. Well-written, somewhat disturbing, and I think it would make a great movie!

message 15: by Cathy (last edited Feb 10, 2010 01:30PM) (new)

Cathy 15.Cutting for Stone byAbraham Verghese.

An audio book can be engaging and interesting while on your commute to work. A well-written epic novel as this is is then taken into your home to further enjoy the wonders of a superb and riveting first novel. To lie awake as you would with a grand book well past the midnight hour on the eve of another snowstorm listening with continued absorption until the story closes says much for the caliper of this novel.

This is a well-developed novel full of characters of the most memorable and remarkable sort. Alot of the story is under a framework of medicine and surgery , but is so much more a story of wonder, misery, and redemption. A novel that never fails you and reaches deeply into your heart and mind and remains with you beyond the closing of the book, or in this case an unrivaled, well-narrated audio experience. Truely loved this one and I will now go and purchase this novel for a permanent place on my bookshelf.

message 18: by Cathy (last edited Feb 20, 2010 06:46PM) (new)

Cathy 18. Rooftops of Tehran: A Novel byMahbod Seraji.

An emotionally felt story of deep friendship and young love during a tumultuous time of brewing revolution in Iran. I easily connected with the characters and felt the pain and grief they encountered, while also rejoicing in the true degree of friendship and love in these well-written characters. Universal themes in a faraway setting.

message 22: by Cathy (last edited Mar 19, 2010 05:18PM) (new)

Cathy 22. Impossible by Nancy Werlin.
23. Haiku: A Novel byAndrew Vachss.

message 24: by Cathy (new)

Cathy Weather is getting nice and I'm slowing down a bit now that winter has passed. It took me awhile to finish this one.... Lark and Termite by Jayne Anne Phillips. (Number 25 and still counting.)

message 25: by Cathy (last edited Apr 10, 2010 05:21PM) (new)

message 36: by Cathy (new)

Cathy This is it I have read 50 in 2010...yipee!!!!! Of course, I will keep can I not. There are all kinds of addicts. I guess there are worst things than book addicts.

49. The Shipping News by Annie Proulx

The Shipping News by Annie Proulx

50. The Ghost Orchid by Carol Goodman

The Ghost Orchid by Carol Goodman (audiobook).

message 37: by Connie (new)

Connie (conniebury) | 197 comments Congrats Cathy! You are on course for 100 :-)

message 39: by Rose (new)

Rose (obsessedreader9) | 215 comments Oh, I loved Mister Pip! Anyone who has savored Great Expectations should appreciate this unique little book (although there is some grisly violence at certain points).


message 40: by Cathy (new)

Cathy 52. The Swan Thieves by Elizabeth Kostova

The Swan Thieves by Elizabeth Kostova.

Just finished this on audio. It was abit lengthy, but an interesting mystery that unfolds that involves love, obsession, and lots of painting. The actor Treat Willliams, a very recognizable voice, reads as one of the main characters in this novel. If there was a 3 and a half star rating it would fall about here, not quite a full-four book, but definitely worth a second glance.

message 41: by Shawn (new)

Shawn | 153 comments Congrats on 50+!

message 43: by Cathy (new)

Cathy 54. Brooklyn by Colm Tóibín

Brooklyn by Colm Tóibín (audiobook)

message 44: by Cathy (new)

Cathy 55. Major Pettigrew's Last Stand by Helen Simonson
Major Pettigrew's Last Stand by Helen Simonson

56. City of Thieves by David Benioff
City of Thieves by David Benioff. This is my favorite book of the summer. I did it on audiobook and loved it.

57. The Blackwater Lightship by Colm Tóibín
The Blackwater Lightship by Colm Tóibín

58. Once Upon a Day by Lisa Tucker

Once Upon a Day by Lisa Tucker. Picked this one out at the library and was pleasantly surprised.

59. While I Was Gone by Sue Miller
While I Was Gone by Sue Miller

60. If the Dead Rise Not (Bernard Gunther, #6) by Philip Kerr
If the Dead Rise Not by Philip Kerr

message 45: by Rose (new)

Rose (obsessedreader9) | 215 comments The Swan Thieves is the best book I've read yet this year.


message 46: by Cathy (new)

Cathy Obsessedreader wrote: "The Swan Thieves is the best book I've read yet this year.


I read it one audiobook and gave it four stars. One of the main readers on the audio was the actor Treat Williams. That was kind of cool since his voice is so recognizable.

My favorites this year were: Cutting for Stone, The Help, and City of Thieves.

message 48: by Rose (new)

Rose (obsessedreader9) | 215 comments Cathy, I agree that The Help and Cutting For Stone were both excellent books. I was disappointed in City of Thieves, however. Halfway through, I anticipated the ending and was really hoping it wouldn't be that trite.


message 50: by Cathy (new)

Cathy 65. Blame A Novel by Michelle Huneven Blame: A Novel by Michelle Huneven

66. The Scent of Rain and Lightning by Nancy Pickard The Scent of Rain and Lightning by Nancy Pickard

67. Mr. Peanut by Adam Ross Mr. Peanut by Adam Ross

68. This Is Where I Leave You by Jonathan Tropper This Is Where I Leave You by Jonathan Tropper

Tropper's novel was the best of this lot. It was a funny and insightful look at a dysfunctional family as they sat shiva for their deceased father/husband.

Pickard's novel was a 3 1/2 read filled with the unveiling of long ago secrets of murder in small-town America. A good read filled with suspense that keeps you going until the mystery is solved.

"Mr. Peanut" had a good premise with a mediocre execution. I found this one confusing at times.

"Blame" I completed on audio. There are better narrations and books for audio out there. An average read with a decent twist at the end, but the story felt a bit drawn out at times.

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