andraste: The reason half the internet imagines me as Patrick Stewart. (Default)
Apparently I am in a memeish mood this week. Slightly altering the syntax.

What we have here is the top 106 books most often marked as "unread" by LibraryThing’s users. As in, they sit on the shelf to make you look smart or well-rounded. Bold the ones you've read, italicise the ones you own but haven't read, underline the ones you started but didn't finish.

Marvel at the works of literature that I have yet to experience! )

So: read twenty-five, started but didn't finish two (one of which is the highly episodic Canterbury Tales) and own-but-have-not-read three. That leaves about seventy I have had no contact with outside BBC costume drama. For increased meme interactivity: feel free to tell me which of these I should read.
andraste: The reason half the internet imagines me as Patrick Stewart. (Default)
Bushranged from [livejournal.com profile] astrogirl2. This is a list of the books most often tagged 'unread' on LibraryThing, that is books that people own but have not read. Bold the ones you've read, italicize the ones you started but didn't finish.

Can I just add that I am never, ever reading any Thomas Hardy again? )

So the only books on the list to have defeated me so far are The Silmarilion and Oliver Twist. I blame all the interchangeable elves in the first case; I think I got distracted by another book part way through Oliver and never got around to finishing it. We did extracts from The Canterbury Tales at university, but I have never actually read that from cover to cover.

The only ones that I own but have not read are Anansi Boys - my mother borrowed it - and Sense and Sensibility. Oh, and I think I may have a copy of The Iliad somewhere.
andraste: The reason half the internet imagines me as Patrick Stewart. (Business Associates)
I have a new desk with a new computer, and a new mouse. I mention this because the mouse has UST printed on it in big letters. This may be why I chose this desk in the first place ...

Anyway, I digress. Yesterday I killed a lot of time at work by converting the old MSWorks database listing every book I read between the ages of 14 and 22 into a text file. (I no longer have access to any software that will read the file as intended, but by opening it in Notepad and deleting the resulting gobbledegook, I've at least preserved the contents.) It makes for fascinating reading on it own account ...

- I'm surprised to find that I was over my Anne McCaffrey phase before I turned fourteen, because there's only one Pern book on the list. Also amazed that I'd read all of Cynthia Voight's Tillerman cycle by then, barring The Runner which my mother didn't let me have until that year. I was a precocious wee thing.

- My records are impressive but incomplete. There are at least half a dozen books I know I read during the relevant time period that aren't recorded. Most of these are Anne Rice - I read her novels furtively, mostly in the early mornings before the rest of the family was awake, because I knew my parents wouldn't approve. Apparently I was so paranoid I didn't put them in the database at the time. Memnoch the Devil appears in its proper place, because by then I'd moved away to university. And after that I stopped reading Anne Rice.

- Speaking of Anne Rice: gracious, I read a lot of awful books in my teens. Terry Brooks! David Eddings! R.A. Salvatore! Dragonlance! (No offense to anyone who loves the above series. I still have a huge crush on Raistlin Majere myself.) I refuse to lump Robert Jordan in with the rest of the bad fantasy. His books were not terrible last I checked, merely interminable.

- I also read many excellent books of many genres. Tim Winton, Tad Williams, Dianna Wynne Jones, and all the Terry Pratchett, Aiden Chambers and Barbara Hambly I could lay hands on.

- After The Lord of the Rings, Barbara Hambly's Windrose Chronicles are my most-reread books. There is a reason the Fourth Doctor is my favourite, clearly.

- Science fiction is definitely more of an adult passion for me than fantasy, probably because a lot of the sf I read early in my teens didn't click for me. (I never took to Andre Norton, for instance.) In the gap between Year 12 and uni I read Julian May's Saga of the Exiles, and after that I never looked back.

- I still have an intense aversion to the books I had to read for school and hated - chiefly The Chocolate War, Sons and Lovers and The Mayor of Casterbridge. And yet for some unknown reason I read Beyond the Chocolate War voluntarily. I've avoided D.H. Lawrence and Thomas Hardy like the plague, though.

- On the other hand, I still have nothing but warm feelings for Lord of the Flies, To Kill a Mockingbird and Cloudstreet. Score three for the English curriculum. I also appreciate the many books that various teachers recommended to me when they saw how much I loved reading - that's how I was introduced to Aiden Chambers, and how I became the only person in class to read the sequels to My Brother Jack.

- Most of my favourite books from school, though, were 'liberated' from the English storeroom rather than studied. There were stacks of class copies just sitting there gathering dust, because they were considered impossibly advanced for modern students. Because I was the principal's daughter I just took whatever I wanted. That's how I was introduced to 1984, The Great Gatsby and An Imaginary Life, among others.

- I never did get around to reading the last few Dorothy Sayers Whimsey books - the ones with Harriet Vane in them, that is. I think I was saving them up! Time to correct the oversight next time I go to the library.

- The best thing about not being a grad student any more (you know, other than not being quite literally insane from stress) is how much more fiction reading I get done. I read fewer novels during my undergrad years, but still respectable numbers. Sometime towards the end of 2002 I stopped keeping records, before starting up again in late 2005. Reconstructing from memory, I think I read no more than a couple of dozen books while between databases.

- Now that I have two new bookshelves installed in my flat and my collection is slowly but steadily migrating from my parents' place to mine, I need to do some serious rereading. Time to find out if the books that were awesome when I was fourteen are still awesome.
andraste: The reason half the internet imagines me as Patrick Stewart. (Attracted to Shiny Objects)
So everyone has been talking about this list of books, which I thought good in some parts but bewildering in others. So I decided I would make my own! It's a top twenty-one, because I found it impossible to get to thirty without going all the way to fifty. (If you see what I mean - if I'd chosen any more, there would have been too many that would make the cut.)

I think everyone should do this, so I can see what great works of literature I have missed.

No Thomas Hardy here ... )
andraste: The reason half the internet imagines me as Patrick Stewart. (Old School)
In recent months, I've started working my way through the gigantic back catalogue of Doctor Who novels. I'm almost out of new TV episodes (well, in relative terms) and given how much I've been enjoying the audios I thought I'd give the other spin off medium a try. Mostly I've enjoyed the journey thus far, with some notable exceptions. I've decided to log the books here largely for my own benefit, but I imagine other fans might find my notes interesting, too. I'm reading all the different series and all the different Doctors at once - I hope to go through the New Adventures and the BBC Eighth Doctor Adventures in order, but with the rest there's no particular pattern.

I was pleasantly surprised at how easy these books were to find here in Melbourne. There are only a handful that aren't available at a library somewhere in the city.

The first nine books I read ... )
andraste: The reason half the internet imagines me as Patrick Stewart. (Default)
I am in possession of the internet again, albeit only for the weekend! Hooray for parental computers!

Anyway, so that this post is more than me doing a happy dance over my temporary return to the wonderful world of cyberspace, I am in need of your aid. After several years of not reading very much for RL reasons (or at lest not very much fiction printed between actual cardboard covers) in the last few months I've been devouring reading material. Thus I find myself in need of recommendations.

It's not that I don't have plenty of books sitting around waiting to be read, mind you. I just have the attention span of a gnat at the moment *g*. Anything over three hundred pages or so seems like far too much work. So: what short books, potentially available at an Australian library, should I be reading?

Science fiction and fantasy are my usual genres of choice (although please no multi-volume epics) but I'll read just about anything. I seem to be having a mystery phase at present (mystery series recs more than welcome, since individual books usually stand alone.)

I'm not a big romance reader - that's not uninformed snobbery; I read plenty as a teen, but I find most of the genre (at least as handled outside fanfiction and manga) unsatisfying. I could write an essay about why, but in brief, we all know my favourite 'ships include Charles Xavier/Erik Lensherr, Londo Mollari/G'Kar and Jack Bristow/Irina Derevko. Find me a romance novel where the leads argue about politics and then try to kill each other and I'll certainly give it a shot *g*.

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