Challenge: 50 Books discussion

Finish Line 2011 > Badlydone's 50 (or rather 43) for 2011

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message 1: by Badlydone (new)

Badlydone So, I failed to finish the 50-book challenge in 2010 -only made it to 42. My goal for 2011 is to read 43 books, one more than last year. It may not happen as I plan on reading some "heavy" books this year - but it is worth a shot. Good luck to all doing this challenge!

message 2: by Badlydone (last edited Feb 01, 2011 06:51PM) (new)

Badlydone Cartoon History of the Universe I, Vol. 1-7 From the Big Bang to Alexander the Great by Larry Gonick

1) The Cartoon History of the Universe I, Vol. 1-7: From the Big Bang to Alexander the Great by Larry Gonick

What a great start to the year - one of the best books I have read! This book is the first in a series of graphic novels (or rather graphic non-fiction) that traces the history of the workd. The book is very well-written and filled with dry humor - every page brought a smile. THe book covers the Big Bang, dinosaurs, early man, the dawn of civilization, and specific civilizations including Sumeria, Egypt, and Assyria and puts in historical perspective events occuring in the Bible. Gonick does a wonderful job of summarizing history - well worth a read! Five Stars.

message 3: by Badlydone (new)

Badlydone Much Ado About Nothing by William Shakespeare

2) Much Ado About Nothing by William Shakespeare (finished January 16)

On hearing that David Tennant (my favorite actor) and Catherine Tate are going to be starring in a West End staging of Much Ado About Nothing, I decided to re-read this play. One of my favorite comedies by the Bard - and David Tennant seems perfect for the role of Benedick! I live on the wrong side of the pond and am keeping my fingers crossed that there will be a television version as with Hamlet!

message 4: by Badlydone (new)

Badlydone Frederica by Georgette Heyer

3) Frederica by Georgette Heyer (finished January 25)

Another great Heyer Regency Romance! Frederica is a charming young lady who seeks to introduce her beautiful sister to the London social scene so that she (the sister) can make a good match. To this end, she seeks the help of a distant cousin, the Marquis of Alverstoke, a wealthy but notorious rake.

Frederica is a very spirited, lively young woman whom one can't help but like. As for the hero, I could not get him out of my mind for several days :-) Adding to the great cast of characters are Frederica's two young brothers, Felix and Jessamy with their misadventures. If you are a fan of well-written period fiction and enjoy a light romance, Frederica is the book for you!

message 5: by Badlydone (new)

Badlydone One Essential Writings on Nonduality by Jerry Katz

4) One: Essential Writings on Nonduality by Jerry Katz (finished January 31)

This is a collection of essays on nonduality edited by Jerry Katz. The first part contains essays from several religious traditions including Hinduism, Christianity, Sufi Islam, Judaism, Buddhism, Taoism, and Native American Sprituality. The second part contains writing on nonduality from different perspectives - Art, Psychotherapy, Cinema, and Education. One essay that really echoed with me analyzed the film "The Matrix" from a nondual perspective. A very well-chosen and varied collection indeed.

message 6: by Badlydone (new)

Badlydone Strip Jack (Inspector Rebus, #4) by Ian Rankin

5) Strip Jack by Ian Rankin (finished February 9)

This is the fourth book in the Inspector Rebus series by Ian Rankin. Gregor Jack, MP for Midlothian is involved in a brothel scandal. Rebus has a strong feeling that Jack was being framed, but does not know how to go about proving it. Soon, Jack's rich and permissive wife is found murdered and suspects abound.

While the book does well with regards to the development of Rebus' character, it was not up to the same standard as some of the other earlier and later Rebus novels. I personally felt that there were too many distracting subplots. However, just the presence of Rebus makes it worth a read!

message 7: by Badlydone (last edited Feb 18, 2011 09:49AM) (new)

Badlydone Alice's Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Caroll

6) Alice's Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll (finished February 11)

I had read this book as a child a long, long time ago, and decided to make this my first read on my new Kindle - a decision I'm very happy with! I was transported into the magical world of Alice and did not want to return. But besides being one of the greatest nonsensical fantasy books ever written, I was so impressed by the logic involved in Carroll's writing this time around. Some of the arguments made by the Mad Hatter, the March Hare, and the Cheshire Cat made perfect sense provided you accept their premises!

Also truly enjoyed my first read on the Kindle and am very satisfied with the buy!

message 8: by Badlydone (last edited Feb 26, 2011 10:06AM) (new)

Badlydone The Convenient Marriage by Georgette Heyer

7) The Convenient Marriage by Georgette Heyer (finished February 19)

This is a Georgian (not Regency) romance by Georgette Heyer, featuring a young bride, Horatia Winwood, who has married the Earl of Rule so that her family can get out of the financial mess it is in, but soon desires more from the marriage than mere convenience.

This is the first Georgian romance by Heyer that I have read and it is as delightful as her Regency works. The powdered wigs, patches, highwaymen, and Macaronis are all artifacts from Georgian times that added flavor to the book.

The short, stammering, ordinary-looking Horry is a likeable heroine, and the Earl of Rule is, as a hero, more along the lines of Freddy Standen from Cotillion rather than a rake. A very good read!

message 9: by Badlydone (new)

Badlydone The Parent's Tao Te Ching Ancient Advice for Modern Parents A New Interpretation by William Martin

8) The Parent's Tao Te Ching: Ancient Advice for Modern Parents by WIlliam Martin (finished February 20)

As a general rule, I avoid books on parenting. I stocked up my shelves with (and actually read) various parenting books before my oldest son was born, but later found that they did little but take up valuable shelf space.

That said, this is the only book on parenting that I will wholeheartedly recommend to any parent, new or old. There are no specifics here - you will not learn how to discipline or how to become your child's confidante or any such thing. You are instead given a broader perspective on what it means to be a parent, using the ancient wisdom of the Tao as a guide.

The one message I took home from this book is that you cannot make your children do things you want them too - you probably cannot even teach them much. But what you can do successfully is model the behavior you want to see, guide them gently, and accept them to be separate beings and not your extensions.

The book has very short chapters and I now try to read a chapter everyday to keep the book's valuable lessons in mind as I go through another day of raising two wonderful and precious children.

message 10: by Badlydone (new)

Badlydone Regency Buck by Georgette Heyer

9) Regency Buck by Georgette Heyer (finished February 27)

This is Georgette Heyer's first Regency romance, and has seen its fair share of criticism - particularly of its hero, the fifth Earl of Worth, Julian Audley.

The beautiful heiress, Judith Taverner, and her brother Sir Peregrine, are on their way to London in search of their guardian, when they chance upon a aristocrat who gets entirely too familiar with the feisty Judith. They soon discover that this man is none other than the guardian they had come to meet.

In spite of all the criticism I have read about this novel, this is my favorite Heyer read so far for several reasons. The descriptions of the life and times in Regency England are very detailed and are a pleasure to read. The story features so many characters who were actually a part of history, such as Beau Brummell, the Duke of Clarence, Lord Alvanley and so many more! Beau Brummell, the arbiter of men's fashion in Regency times, has a significant part to play, and I found myself wanting more of him.

In addition, there is a mystery aspect to this book. Someone appears to be trying to kill Sir Peregrine, and there is more than one suspect. Also, the romantic tension between the hero and heroine is the best I have seen in a Heyer work.

All said, I thoroughly enjoyed this novel, and while I can understand all the criticism directed against Lord Worth, he will remain my favorite Heyer hero!

message 11: by Badlydone (new)

Badlydone Around the World in Eighty Days  by Jules Verne

10) Around the World in Eighty Days by Jules Verne (finished March 5)

11) Whose Body? (Lord Peter Wimsey Mysteries, #1) by Dorothy L. Sayers

Whose Body? by Dorothy L. Sayers (finished March 13)

message 12: by Badlydone (new)

Badlydone Georgette Heyer's Regency World by Jennifer Kloester
12) Georgette Heyer's Regency World by Jennifer Kloester (finished March 30)

Galahad at Blandings (A Blandings Story) by P.G. Wodehouse

13) Galahad at Blandings by P. G. Wodehouse (finished April 4)

message 13: by Badlydone (new)

Badlydone 14) THROUGH THE LOOKING GLASS by Lewis Carroll

Through the Looking Glass by Lewis Carroll (finished April 7)

15) Friday's Child by Georgette Heyer

Friday's Child by Georgette Heyer (finished April 15)

message 14: by Badlydone (new)

Badlydone 16) The Grand Sophy by Georgette Heyer
The Grand Sophy by Georgette Heyer (finished April 20)

17) Sin and Syntax How to Craft Wickedly Effective Prose by Constance Hale

Sin and Syntax: How to Craft Wickedly Effective Prose by Constance Hale (finished May 1)

18) The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde And Other Tales of Terror (Penguin Classics) by Robert Louis Stevenson
The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson (finished May 5)

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