Challenge: 50 Books discussion

144 views
Finish Line 2009! > Molly's Marathon - 2009

Comments Showing 1-44 of 44 (44 new)    post a comment »
dateDown arrow    newest »

message 1: by Molly (new)

Molly | 330 comments I managed about half of the goal last year - lets see if I can improve upon that! I will give my rating after each book and a link to read my detailed thoughts for those curious.

#1. The Story of Edgar Sawtelle, D. Wroblewski****
I enjoyed this very much - would recommend for dog lovers who enjoy a little mystery with their tragedy. Warning - SPOILERS in my review here:
http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/27...


message 2: by Molly (last edited Jan 09, 2010 05:24PM) (new)

Molly | 330 comments This will be my overall list for my own records that I will edit as I go - I will post comments individually.

JANUARY:
1. The Story of Edgar Sawtelle A Novel**** (576 pgs.)
2. Anna Karenina*** (817 pgs.)

FEBRUARY:
3. Dewey The Small-Town Library Cat Who Touched the World*** (277 pgs.)
4. The Good, the Bad, & the Ugly New England Patriots Heart-Pounding, Jaw-Dropping, and Gut-Wrenching Moments from New England Patriots History** (192 pgs.)
5. The Handmaid's Tale***** (395 pgs.)

MARCH:
6. In the Woods** (431 pgs.)
7. Suite Française**** (416 pgs.)
8. The Book of Lost Things***** (339 pgs.)

APRIL:
9. The Bell Jar**** (216 pgs.)
10. Perfume The Story of a Murderer** (272 pgs.)

MAY:
11. The Devil in the White City Murder, Magic, and Madness at the Fair that Changed America*** (447 pgs.)
12. As I Lay Dying*** (250 pgs.)
13. Galapagos***** (295 pgs.)

JUNE:
14. The Time Traveler's Wife**** (518 pgs.)
15. Notes from a Small Island*** (352 pgs.)

JULY:
16. Shelf Monkey*** (264 pgs.)
17. Three Day Road**** (354 pgs.)
18. Bleachers** (163 pgs.)

AUGUST:
19. The Wordy Shipmates*** (audio ~ 7 1/2 hrs. or 255 pgs.)
20. Little Women**** (380 pgs. - in really teeny print on longer than standard pages!)

SEPTEMBER:
21. The Help***** (464 pgs.)
22. The Innocent Man Murder and Injustice in a Small Town*** (360 pgs.)
23. Getting Mother's Body A Novel*** (272 pgs.)

OCTOBER:
24. Rebecca.Roman**** (357 pgs.)

NOVEMBER:
25. A Tree Grows In Brooklyn**** (430 pgs.)
26. The Man Who Made Vermeers Unvarnishing the Legend of Master Forger Han van Meegeren*** (255 pgs.)
27. The Graveyard Book*** (307 pgs.)
28. Are You There Vodka? It's Me, Chelsea*** (264 pgs.)

DECEMBER:
29. Gravedigger's Daughter, The*** (582 pgs.)
30. Three Men in a Boat: To Say Nothing of the Dog**** (192 pgs.)

Summary of my year in reading here:
http://thebumblesblog.blogspot.com/20...


message 3: by Molly (new)

Molly | 330 comments #2 - "Anna Karenina" - Leo Tolstoy***
I liked the book - just cannot possibly get the full impact that it must have had when it was originally released. The political and social commentary often went over my head and made my eyes glaze over. I enjoyed the character development and the writing skill to make the oridinary so interesting. Plus, impressive to write a book about adultery with no steamy physical love scenes. Emotion is what Tolstoy conveys best.


message 4: by Molly (new)

Molly | 330 comments #3 - "Dewey: The Small-Town Library Cat Who Touched The World" - Vicki Myron w/Bret Witter***
Sweet kitty - librarian with a personal life from hell - idyllic midwest town. Quick and easy read.


message 5: by Molly (new)

Molly | 330 comments #4 - "The Good, the Bad, & the Ugly New England Patriots Heart-Pounding, Jaw-Dropping, and Gut-Wrenching Moments from New England Patriots History" - Sean Glennon**
Thought I would be getting an in-depth lesson in the history of the Pats. Didn't learn too much and is written as a fan book than impartial facts. Quick and fun but not what I had expected so I was disappointed.


message 6: by Aprile (new)

Aprile (aprileb) Molly wrote: "#2 - "Anna Karenina" - Leo Tolstoy***
I liked the book - just cannot possibly get the full impact that it must have had when it was originally released. The political and social commentary often ..."


I liked that book a lot too :)


message 7: by Molly (new)

Molly | 330 comments Aprile wrote: "Molly wrote: "#2 - "Anna Karenina" - Leo Tolstoy***
I liked the book - just cannot possibly get the full impact that it must have had when it was originally released. The political and social com..."


I wouldn't have read it without it being on the discussion list for the Constant Reader group. I think I got a lot more out of it because of that.


message 8: by Molly (new)

Molly | 330 comments #5 - "The Handmaid's Tale" - Margaret Atwood*****
I loved this book. Couldn't put it down. A cautionary tale of the precarious balance between the life we have now with human rights and how quickly it can disappear with the actions of fanatics. Women really get the short end of the stick in the world of this book, so as a woman, the impact for me was very strong and the story haunts me.


message 9: by Molly (new)

Molly | 330 comments #6 - "In The Woods" - Tana French**
This book was extremely disappointing. I found the narrator to be annoying, his actions not very believable and the ending to be not that surprising or shocking.


message 10: by Melanie (new)

Melanie | 487 comments Hi Molly,
Have you read anything else by Margaret Atwood? She's one of my favorites.


message 11: by Molly (new)

Molly | 330 comments Melanie wrote: "Hi Molly,
Have you read anything else by Margaret Atwood? She's one of my favorites."


No I haven't - but a friend of mine suggested that I check out "The Edible Woman," "Lady Oracle," and "Cat's Eye." Have you read any of those? Which other of her books would you recommend? I did thoroughly enjoy "The Handmaid's Tale."


message 12: by Melanie (last edited Mar 11, 2009 05:26PM) (new)

Melanie | 487 comments I like most of her stuff - I really liked The Blind Assassin and The Robber Bride. Since you liked Handmaid's Tale, you would probably enjoy Oryx and Crake which has the same dystopian feel.


message 13: by Molly (new)

Molly | 330 comments #7 - "Suite Francaise" - Irene Nemirovsky****
I really loved this book and wish we could have experienced the full result of the author's vision. A beautiful portrayal of varying castes of citizens during the WWII invasion and occupation of France and their emotions toward and experiences with each other and their Nazi rulers.


message 14: by Nancy (new)

Nancy (nancybartellsbcglobalnet) Molly, I loved that book too. Her "Fire in The Blood" is also excellent. Nancy


message 15: by Molly (new)

Molly | 330 comments Nancy wrote: "Molly, I loved that book too. Her "Fire in The Blood" is also excellent. Nancy"

Oh - another one that was found long after her death! At least this one seems to have been found completed. Just imagine how beautiful these works would have been if they were the final drafts!



message 16: by Molly (new)

Molly | 330 comments #8 - "The Book of Lost Things" - John Connolly*****
This book was just delicious fun. A coming of age in a fantasy world of fairy tales gone all wrong. More Brothers Grimm than Mother Goose - with moments of The Princess Bride and Monty Python mixed in for good measure. Read it!!!


message 17: by Molly (new)

Molly | 330 comments #9 - "The Bell Jar" - Sylvia Plath****
This book was great. I expected it to be more dark and sad than I found it to be. A very effective story of what it is like to be trapped inside yourself when the world expects something different from you that you can't provide. Traumatic tale of depression and suicidal thoughts, but with humor and hope.


message 18: by Aprile (new)

Aprile (aprileb) I love The Bell Jar


message 19: by Molly (new)

Molly | 330 comments Aprile wrote: "I love The Bell Jar"

I was really surprised by it. Glad I finally dusted it off the shelf.




message 20: by Sue (new)

Sue Slayton | 27 comments Molly wrote: "Aprile wrote: "I love The Bell Jar"

I was really surprised by it. Glad I finally dusted it off the shelf.

"



I don't know if you've heard the unfortunate news that Sylvia Plath's son recently committed suicide. Very sad, and it was also mentioned in the news that his stepmother had committed suicide when he was younger.



message 21: by Molly (new)

Molly | 330 comments Sue wrote: "I don't know if you've heard the unfortunate news that Sylvia Plath's son..."

Oh I did hear that, right as I was beginning to read her book. I didn't know about his stepmother until after I had finished and went looking for more info. on the family. I feel badly for her daughter who is the last relation standing - it's a wonder she doesn't cave in from the tragedy.


message 22: by Molly (new)

Molly | 330 comments #10 - "Perfume: The Story of a Murderer" - Patrick Suskind**

Well, I reached the 10 Books mark which makes me happy - but I was not happy with this book. It was like a speed bump for me. One big exhaustive list of all things perfume - very little action. And when there was it was pretty bizarre.


message 23: by Aprile (new)

Aprile (aprileb) YAY 10 books!!!!!!!!!


message 24: by Mary Todd (new)

Mary Todd (marytodd) | 924 comments a whiff of lovely aroma for your first ten!


message 25: by Molly (new)

Molly | 330 comments #11 - "The Devil in the White City Murder, Magic, and Madness at the Fair that Changed America" - Erik Larson***

Very neat non-fiction book about the head architect who created Chicago's World Fair in the late 1800's and a psychopath serial killer picking off the vulnerable young women who flocked to the city because of it.


message 26: by Molly (new)

Molly | 330 comments #12 - "As I Lay Dyin" - William Faulkner***

What can I say? A great classic by one of my 2 favorite writers. This was a re-read - hadn't read it in probably 20 years and didn't remember the fun journey all that well (thought it seems odd to describe a book about the transportation of a corpse "fun"). So glad I gave myself the refresher. However, I still hold "The Sound & The Fury" up as his best - and my favorite. But this was quite a funny little book.


message 27: by Molly (new)

Molly | 330 comments #13 - "Galapagos" - Kurt Vonnegut*****

Back to back re-reads for me while waiting for my next selection to become available from the library. I hadn't visited Vonnegut in probably 10 years and shouldn't have waited this long to hang out on the Galapagos islands to have a good laugh about what us big brained humans did to try and make ourselves extinct.


message 28: by Molly (new)

Molly | 330 comments #14 - "The Time Travelers Wife" - Audrey Niffenegger****

Highly recommended by many - enjoyed by me. Don't dwell on the time travel parameters but rather focus instead on the effects that the time travel has on the main characters. This is a tale of these soul mates using their love to the core of each other to try and persevere throughout their destiny. It isn't mushy - I swear.


message 29: by Molly (new)

Molly | 330 comments #15 - "Notes From A Small Island" - Bill Bryson***

A funny book about the author's stroll across Britain before moving back to the States after 20 years. People from or familiar with Britain would find this much more humorous than I did since a lot of it was over my head.


message 30: by Molly (new)

Molly | 330 comments #16 - "Shelf Monkey" - Corey Redekop***

Entertaining, humorous and quick read told in the epistolary style about a bibliophile who finds a group of friends who burn unworthy books - and take things just a little too far trying to stand up to the dumbing down of society.


message 31: by Molly (new)

Molly | 330 comments #17 - "Three Day Road" - Joseph Boyden****

Historical fiction set in World War I from the perspective of a Canadian Cree Indian soldier in France comingled with the way of his ancestors as seen through his Aunt back home in the bush. Very moving with excellent writing.


message 32: by Molly (new)

Molly | 330 comments #18 - "Bleachers" - John Grisham**

Insufferable book about a washed up high school QB returning home to come to terms with his former coach who is dying from cancer, and his life without football.


message 33: by Molly (new)

Molly | 330 comments #19 - "The Wordy Shipmates" - Sarah Vowell*** (audio)

Puritan colonizing history lessons with a modern interpretation and pop culture comparisons.


message 34: by Molly (new)

Molly | 330 comments #20 - "Little Women" - Louisa May Alcott****

Children's classic tale of 4 unwealthy sisters of very different personalities growing up during and after the Civil War in New England. This was a re-read that I enjoyed very much.


message 35: by Molly (new)

Molly | 330 comments #21 - "The Help" - Kathryn Stockett*****

Tremendous book taking place in 1962 Mississippi focusing on 3 women (2 black maids and 1 white unwilling socialite and budding writer) who live very different lives but are bound together by their desire to share their story, shining a light on the good, bad and very ugly surrounding that point in civil rights history. Fictional debut covering many themes with excellent storytelling.


message 36: by Molly (new)

Molly | 330 comments #22 - "The Innocent Man: Murder & Injustice In A Small Town" - John Grisham***

Non-fictional accounting of what it was like for a wrongly convicted man to exist on Death Row.


message 37: by Molly (new)

Molly | 330 comments #23 - "Getting Mother's Body" - Suzan-Lori Parks***

The similarities to Faulkner's "As I Lay Dying" distracted me away from full enjoyment of this one which could have stood on its own. Quick read with humor via an updated twist on his classic.


message 38: by Molly (new)

Molly | 330 comments #24 - "Rebecca" - Daphne Du Maurier****

Classic suspense novel perfect for Halloween reading. The new wife is haunted by the dead wife and the secrets she learns only make things more and more sinister. Not to mention the surprise twists.


message 39: by Molly (new)

Molly | 330 comments #25 - "A Tree Grows In Brooklyn" - Betty Smith****

A young girl growing up in the early 1900's in Brooklyn has a love for books, life and family. The innocence of childhood protects her from the hardships of the time.


message 40: by Molly (last edited Nov 19, 2009 09:35AM) (new)

Molly | 330 comments #26 - "The Man Who Made Vermeers: Unvarnishing the Legend of Master Forger Han Van Meegeren" - Jonathan Lopez***

Non-fiction book about legendary forger who duped the world with his fake Vermeer paintings until his reality as a Nazi collaborator/sympathizer was discovered after WW2.


message 41: by Molly (new)

Molly | 330 comments #27 - "The Graveyard Book" - Neil Gaiman***

Young Adult Newberry winner about a boy being raised by ghosts in a graveyard to protect him from the man who murdered his family. Very engaging, fun and sometimes scary, with twists that at times were predictible and others, not so much.


message 42: by Molly (new)

Molly | 330 comments #28 - "Are You There Vodka? It's Me, Chelsea" - Chelsea Handler***

Fast, easy and fun - just as Chelsea describes herself in this humorous collection of essays laid out chronologically including 3rd grade fibs to improve her standing with classmates, the horror of sharing her boyfriend's privates with a dog and vactioning with her father.


message 43: by Molly (new)

Molly | 330 comments #29 - "The Gravedigger's Daughter" - Joyce Carol Oates***

Well this is not exactly the most uplifting story to read around the holidays - or ever for that matter. But the character development provided qualities of hope and strength to admire amongst all the tragedy life throws the main character's way. The story of the life of a young girl born into bad circumstances, making some poor choices, and ultimately learning to adapt and improve her footing.


message 44: by Molly (new)

Molly | 330 comments #30 - "Three Men In A Boat: To Say Nothing of the Dog" - Jerome K. Jerome****

Over 100 year old humor still made me laugh today. Must be the English. I finished this book the last week of December, just now realized I forgot to add it here. Final book of 2009.


back to top