30 Days of Books

Saturday June 11, 2011

Day 30 - An Author that you will read ANYTHING they put out.

I have a few of these.  Some are elsewhere on this list and some are not.  Ray Bradbury is one.  Milan Kundera is another.  Jeanette Winterson, John Connolly, Sarah Langan, Robert Sawyer,  David Sedaris, Laurie Notaro, Jon Stewart, Wayne Dyer (hokey but good).



And that concludes my 30 (+) days of books.  I want to thank Mollie over at OK in UK once again for sending me the list and I want to encourage you to do this.  It's fun and makes you remember why you read so much in the first place.



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Friday June 10, 2011

Day 29 - An Author that you hate or just won't read.

I have two of these.  The first is one that my friends from Borders in Chandler will understand.

Nora Roberts is a bitch.

Seriously.  How many books can a person churn out?  We used to have so many Nora Roberts books that we had to store them in the back room.

The second is for a similar reason but not because I have to work with them.

James Patterson is a whore.
I refuse to believe that anyone can write a book a month.  And if they do they have to suck.  Additionally, the fact that SOMEONE ELSE is actually writing the books (their names appear in small print) and tacking "BY JAMES PATTERSON" onto the cover in big letters infuriates me.  He simply whores his name out and these actual (probably perfectly talented writers) get no credit for it.






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Thursday June 9, 2011

Day 28 - A Book you wish you never read

Life is too short.  I seriously cannot come up with one.  And here's why.

Several years ago, I went to my then boss at the bookstore and said, do  you ever feel guilty when you don't finish a book because you just can't get into it?

And his answer was something like, "Around here, we spend a LOT of time reading.  There is no point in wasting that time in your life if you just aren't enjoying it.  Reading is supposed to be enjoyable.  If it isn't PUT THE BOOK DOWN."

So I have NO ANSWER for this one.

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Tuesday June 7, 2011

I have a TON of catching up to do!

Day 27 - A book you would write if you have unlimited resources

Once the below book was written, I would sit down and write an alternate season 6, where the ending has SOMETHING TO DO with the rest of the story.  No.  I am not still bitter a year later (I am).

Day 26 - Book you wish would be written

I would love the writers of Lost who were there in the first 5 seasons to sit down with fans and write out the answers to the top 5,000 questions and mysteries from the first 5 seasons of the show.   It won't ever happen because of the shitty "it's was a character story" attitude of the producers, but it's what I want.





Day 25 - Favorite Biographical/Autobiographical book

And really funny too...


Day 24 - The original was "A book you found out later the author lied about" but there is really only a small handful and the big one appears elsewhere so I am changing this one to :

A book you thought was laugh out loud funny

If you have never heard the story of what the people in Holland tell their children about Santa Claus, (or Sinter Klaus) you need to read this.  You will have a new story to scare your kids with.




Day 23 - Favorite Romance Novel

I have literally NEVER read a book that would be considered a romance-genre type book.  No Nora Roberts or pictures of Fabio and nothing with the Highlander (why is the romance audience obsessed with this Highlander).  I have never even read any of those vampire-romances that all the kids seem to be into.

But I have read this:



This is the most beautifully written book I have ever read.  And the gender of the narrator is never revealed.  It is haunting and romantic and painful.  I LOVED this book.

From the Author's web page:

Written on the body is a secret code only visible in certain lights: the accumulations of a lifetime gather there. In places the palimpsest is so heavily worked that the letters feel like Braille. I like to keep my body rolled up away from prying eyes, never unfold too much, or tell the whole story. I didn't know that Louise would have reading hands. She has translated me into her own book.


It's a simple story; love found, love lost, love found again - maybe. The unnamed narrator falls for a married woman called Louise. Louise leaves her husband but when she finds she has cancer, she leaves her new lover too. Written on the Body is a journey of self-discovery made through the metaphors of desire and disease.
Sounds romantic, right?



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Friday June 3, 2011

Day 22 - Favorite Series

I have not read very many series.  I get bored with the same characters and places.  I never got into Harry Potter or Twilight or Lord of the Rings. 

Right now I just started the Game of Thrones series so we will see about that one.

So I am calling my favorite series a repeat of yesterday:




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Thursday June 2, 2011

Day 21 - A guilty pleasure



I admit it.  I loved Flowers in the Attic.  And I didn't read it as a prepubescent girl who giggled at the incest parts.  NO.  I read this as a full fledged adult in my mid-twenties.

Here's the thing though.  The mother was bad and evil and selfish and mean.  We all get that.  But will someone please explain to me why the hell this is classified in the HORROR section?  If this is horror than the Lifetime Movie Network is filled with snuff films. 

I loved this book so much I went on to read three of the four follow ups (which include two prequels).



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Wednesday June 1, 2011

Day 20 - A book you would recommend to an ignorant, racist/closed minded person.

Is it wrong that the only person I can think of is Sarah Palin?

I want her to read this:

I am about 98% sure that Sarah Palin has no idea what communism is ACTUALLY about, other than Ronald Reagan said it's bad.  In fact, I want all the Tea Partiers to read it. 

Now I realize that they won't be able to follow it, so I will let them off the hook and recommend this instead:




I can't get the pics to line up becaue Blogger is stupid.

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Tuesday May 31, 2011

Day 19 - A book that changed your mind about a particular subject

I wish I could say that this one was easy and it came right to me but it didn't.

I used to work in a mall.  So every day at break time I went to the food court and ate.  Most days I also ate there BEFORE my shift and sometimes after.  I lived alone and so I ate fast food most nights for dinner because it's really no fun to cook for yourself.  And when I didn't eat out, I ate a ton of frozen and processed crap.

Then I read this:



It is no exaggeration when I say that I literally ate NO FAST FOOD from places like McDonalds, Wendy's or Taco Bell for 4 years.  The book turned me off to that crap and turned me on to cooking real food, which also led me to become pretty knowledgeable about processed crap food. 

As an epilogue, I have to admit that when I got pregnant, my only cravings were for Peanut Butter, Baked Potatoes and McDonald's Big and Tasty.  And I ate A LOT of them.  And I still do.  For some reason the gross-out and loathing for the industry just didn't stick.  But I do cook a lot more now so I figure in moderation it isn't too bad.

p.s.  Yes.  I skipped a day.  But no one will notice.

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Sunday May 29, 2011
Days 17 and 18

Day 18 - A book you love that you can't find on shelves anymore

There are probably a ton of these but there is only one that I actually looked for a long time and couldn't find (they recently re-released it).

First though, I would like to tell you a creepy story about this book:

When I was in 11th grade, my refusal to simply show up to classes like a normal high schooler made my school decide to put me into an after school program for bad kids.  I went to school from 3-5:30 instead and took one subject per day rather than the college-level classes I WAS taking in normal school, which I was in no way struggling with in the first place.  But whatever...rules are rules right?

I suppose my new English teacher was trying to find books that would appeal to us asshole rebels.  So the class was reading "Looking for Mr. Goodbar".  Here is the very mild version of a quick synopsis, which does not even begin to touch on the pornographic nature of the book from GoodReads.com:
Now, because this wasn't an odd enough book to be teaching in a high school english class, the teacher read it out loud.  Even the sex parts. I can not read the penthouse letters without hearing his voice to this day.



For years I tried to find this book and couldn't because I wanted to read it as an adult and see if it still seemed so wrong without the middle-aged teacher reading about overt lust and thrashing-around sex but couldn't find it. I DID however see the movie with Richard Gere and it was indeed too fucking weird for a high school english class.  I was SERIOUSLY glad he didnt make us watch the movie.


Day 17 - A book turned movie and completely desecrated

I have a lot of little cheats.  For this one I am taking a book that I REALLY enjoyed  and that I thought had HUGE potential when I found out they were doing it, but that was made into a HORRIBLE TV SHOW (rather than movie), which completely threw out all the interesting parts of the book.



I still highly recommend the book to anyone who doesn't REALLY like science fiction but kind of likes science because the book is full of fascinating quantum theory and readable enough for me (I might as well be retarded when it comes to that stuff).

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Friday, May 27, 2011

Day 16 - Favorite Book turned movie

I felt like I needed to use one that I enjoyed both the book AND the movie.  I also wanted to use one where I read the book first and the movie didn't totally disappoint me (like Memoirs of a Geisha did).  Those are few and far between but this one I loved both.




I have read every book Carrie Fisher has put out.  She's fucking hilarious.  They are written as fiction but you can almost taste the autobiographical undertones throughout (HELLO?  The crazy daughter of a movie queen?).  I sincerely hope they make a movie of the somewhat follow-up "The Best Awful" because that book was even more fun to read than Postcards.


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Thursday, May 26, 2011

Day 15 - Favorite Book Dealing with a Foreign Culture


Me love you long time, Arthur Golden
Until I read House of Leaves, this was my favorite book.  It is magnificently written and so vivid that you feel like you LIVE in early 20th century Japan.  It was hard to believe that a male author could be so fully inside a woman's head.  Then the movie came along and sucked. It was probably the most disappointed I had even been by a book-turned movie EVER.

Funny story:

I had an ex boyfriend who was interested in reading anything I said I liked and so he borrowed this book.  We broke up before he could finish it.  A couple of months later he "returned" it.  But I soon realized that he did not return my original First Edition (hardcover) Memoirs of a Geisha (which I had gotten in the bargain bin) but instead had tracked down a hardcover with the original cover (this was after the movie tie-in came out) and spent $23.00 on one so that he could keep mine because he wanted to have MINE.

I love this book.

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Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Day 14 - A book that should be required reading in College and/or high school:

History is written by the winners, right?  Well what you learned for the last 12 years is not always totally accurate.  And so my choice for this one is a tie.

AND





















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Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Day 13 - Favorite Childhood Book



I feel a lot like Ferdinand.  I just want to be left alone and because ONE TIME I sit on a bee and run around like my ass is on fire, people expect me to do great things.  But no.  I just want to sit under my favorite cork tree, smell the flowers and be left the fuck alone!

I LOVE Ferdinand. 

If you don't know the story of Ferdinand, you can see the Disney cartoon version from 1938 here:

http://youtu.be/HJqOb6a2UQc

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Monday, May 23, 2011

Day 12 - A book so emotionally draining that you either couldn't finish it or had to set it aside for a bit.

 (I wish this was an option in real life)

This is seriously one of the best books I have ever read. Seriously. I am oh, so grateful that I finished it. But it's tough. The subject matter is tremendously disturbing, unless you find pre-pubescent boys dressing up like little girls and turning tricks at truck stops "easy to read".

I was devastated when I found out that JT Leroy sold the movie rights to this and then came out in public (he/she was a "recluse" which was apparently all a stunt) because the idea that it was a real autobiographical novel added power to it. Still a fucking fantastically powerful read. And who could resist the title?
Thanks, amazon
The Heart is Deceitful Above All Things by JT LeRoy

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Sunday, May 22, 2011

Posted by Selena

Day 11 - The Book that Made You Fall in Love with Reading

In 10th grade, I had the best English teacher on earth who pushed me to find a book that I loved. I found the Martian Chronicles. I am not a sci-fi nerd and I don't generally enjoy space themed crap but I LOVED this book because of it's short stories that linked together and then the magical and severely emotionally powerful writing of Bradbury.


The Martian Chronicles by Ray Bradbury

Thank you, Mr. Casamento...It is becaus of this book that I went on to become so promiscuous with books.

Fom Wikipedia:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Martian_Chronicles
The Martian Chronicles is a 1950 science fiction short story collection by Ray Bradbury that chronicles the colonization of Mars by humans fleeing from a troubled and eventually atomically devastated Earth, and the conflict between aboriginal Martians and the new colonists. The book lies somewhere between a short story collection and an episodic novel, containing stories Bradbury originally published in the late 1940s in science fiction magazines. For publication, the stories were loosely woven together with a series of short, interstitial vignettes.
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Saturday, May 21, 2011

Posted by Selena

Day 10 - The First Novel You Remember Reading

 I know I read this and I know I loved it at the time but I will be damned if I can tell you anything about it.



I also know I read it in fourth grade because that was the year the Catholic school I went to since preschool closed and it was a pretty traumatic time.

The fact that I read this in fourth grade just reinforced the feeling that I need to send my kid to private school because apparently this book is meant for kids in "early middle school" which I take to mean 6th or 7th grade.

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May 20, 2011


Day 9 - A book you've read more than once:

My copy is underlined, dog eared, highlighted, starred and has comments in most of the margins. I LOVE Kundera's stark scenes and philosophical look at the human condition.



Bing Shopping's description:

"A young woman in love with a man torn between his love for her and his incorrigible womanizing; one of his mistresses and her humbly faithful lover -- these are the two couples whose story is told in this masterful novel. In a world in which lives are shaped by irrevocable choices and by fortuitous events, a world in which everything occurs but once, existence seems to lose its substance, its weight. Hence, we feel "the unbearable lightness of being" not only as the consequence of our pristine actions but also in the public sphere, and the two inevitably intertwine."
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Thursday, May 19, 2011

Day 8 - An Unpopular book that SHOULD be a bestseller:
I don't even need to comment on this one. All parents should own this to pull out on those particularly "fun" evenings where the kid just will not fucking go to sleep.

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May 18, 2011

A book that is hard to read

This could be taken two ways. But my selection for this one made me have to stop because it was seriously disgusting me, which I am sure is NOT the intention of the author:


First off, I want to let you know that I watched the movie. As bizarre and disturbing as the movie was, it was NO WHERE NEAR as fucked up as the book. It is NOT easy to upset my sensibilities but Bret Easton Ellis managed to completely destroy them. I squirmed and gagged and finally gave up because it was so graphic and twisted that I wanted to slit my own throat.

The writing is beautiful though and in some parts I was actually touched. Like this passage:
"My personality is sketchy and unformed, my heartlessness goes deep and is persistent. My conscience, my pity, my hopes disappeared a long time ago if they ever did exist. There are no more barriers to cross. All I have in common with the uncontrollable and the insane, the vicious and the evil, all the mayhem I have caused and my utter indifference toward it. I have no surpassed. I still, though, hold on to one single bleak truth: no one is safe, nothing is redeemed"
But Ellis's ability to capture this character's total depersonalization was too much for me.
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Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Day 06- A Book that makes you cry



Anyone familiar with John Irving knows about the emotional potency of his writing. Anyone who isn't familiar should be warned that he will make you cry.

This is a book in three parts and the first part is the subject of the movie "The Door in the Floor". This is the part of the book that I cry throughout. Because Ruth is 4 years old and lives in a house where her older brothers had died in a car crash and her mother never quite recovered. The emotional incapability of her mother is so palpable that it hurts to read. She ends up having an affair, which is also very emotionally charged and she just leaves one day, never to be seen again. And so this little girl is left somewhat bereft but very much loved and cared for by her father.

The second part of the book is also very satifying and as Ruth becomes a very successful writer she embarks on a book tour. While in Amsterdam she witnesses a murder and spends the rest of the book trying to find someone who will investigate.

In the third and last part, she is widowed and has a young son and falls in a deep love for the first time (which also makes me cry) with the detective who is working on the murder case. I am not telling if he solves the murder or not but I will say that there is a surprise at the end of the book and it isn't that he's the killer.

(Doing this list is making me want to go back and read all these books again from a different point in my life. Except Twilight. Fuck Twilight.)

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Monday, May 16, 2011

Day 05- A Non-fiction book that you were assigned in school that you actually enjoyed.


(I told Mollie that I was going to change this up a little because we both took offense to the idea that one could "actually" like nonfiction. So I added the part about the assignment.)



In Cold Blood by Truman Capote was assigned to me in my creative nonfiction class in college. I typically HATE true crime and hate gory murder scenes but this book transcended all that with fantastic character development of these two small-time crooks turned murderers of an entire small town family.

The reason I loved this book so much was that Capote took the time to humanize everyone in the story, from the killers to the family to the sheriff investigating the crime. No one was a small character and the story moves from the time before the crime right through to death row. Of course, after spending many hours interviewing one of the convicts, Capote develops a crush and so his interpretation of Perry Smith are much more emotional and you actually find yourself momentarily thinking that this guy isn't pure evil but just dealt a bad hand.

The movie version is good, but the book really must be read. It is a true American classic in every sense of the word.

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Sunday, May 15, 2011

Day 4 - A Book That Reminds You Of Home

This would have been much easier if I was still living AWAY from home in Arizona. But I am going to pick one and tell you why:



It isn't the theme of this book that makes me think of home. Honestly, I don't remember much of the story. It's the time when I was reading it.

I was an odd teenager. I was suffering from serious depression and dropped out of high school half way through my senior year. During that spring, I started this book. I would spend hours sitting in my parent's backyard or in my room reading this. I had a tough time concentrating and so I went and got the audio version hoping to listen AND read to absorb the story. I didn't know about audiobooks being abridged though and so I had to tough it out with the book.

Half way through, my parents split. My mother had a boyfriend and so she moved out and my father was thrown into his own private hell, which I could do nothing about because I knew that there was no words to help. I was stuck there and this book became my escape.

So that is my book that reminds me of home. My parents' home.

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Saturday, May 14, 2011

Day 3 - A book that Surprised You

I was not sure what to make of this book when I found it in the bargain bin. It appears to be a kids book with big pictures and humorous explanations of the head, but as I began to read it I realized that this is really a spoof of a kids book. Meant for adults with a bizarre sense of humor.



Take for example the treatise on ears called "Who is the lunatic who designed your ears?". It describes how ears were invented in 1911 and how the designer only had 2 days to design them so he was a little rushed. But he was also working on a tree fort, and so the ear was created in a late-night session wherein he just created ANYTHING to get the ear finished.

Other topics include:
  •  Political Affiliations Within the Body
  • The Great Swamp Mouth Hunt
  • Your Nose Hairs: the body's fallen angels
  • Reasons to Remove your Teeth and/or Tongue

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Friday, May 13, 2011

Day 2- A Book You Hate

Twilight.



Seriously.

And I know this is going to get me all kinds of hate reactions but screw you guys. I hated it.

I was working at Borders when the phenomenon that is "Twilight" happened. I was curious. What the hell was so great about this book? Why did people think this was so awesome? This has only happened one other time to me and that was with the DaVinci Code and when I read that I totally "got" why a gazillion people LOVED that book. It was cool and complicated. A page turner with smarts.

Twilight was a story about a girl and a vampire.

Yes. That's it. A girl who likes a sparkly dude who drinks blood.

I want to make it clear that I LIKE vampires. I once DATED a guy called Johnny Vampire (true story). I LOVED all of the Vampire Chronicles and think Lestat is one of the great vampires of all time. My hatred is not about the vampires.

The writing is mediocre at best. The story is predictable. And when the author came to one of the Borders stores to sign some books she was apparently a total cunt to everyone who worked there.

Twilight is a vampire story (and werewolf story too) for those who don't really like vampires. It's a teenage romance novel, not a horror novel. And I do LOVE me some good gory vampire horror.

So there. I hate Twilight. And I also hate that Pattinson guy and his doped up girlfriend. :-)

(as always the images come via google search. They aren't mine)
 
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Thursday, May 12, 2011

30 Days of Books!!!  Day 1.
My buddy Mollie over at Ok in UK is doing this and she got it from somewhere and I am stealing it from her.

Since I am a total book WHORE, I should have no problem with this, right?

DAY 1 - YOUR FAVORITE BOOK




This book is nothing short of a total mind fuck. It is terrifying in that psychological, you don't really KNOW why you're scared kind of way. Not to mention that the format of the book is all part of the story.

There are pages that are normal. But then there's this:





And this:




And even this:



The story itself is about a couple of different stories that connect...a house that has a bottomless room, a junkie who got his hands on the story and it's making him go crazy...a mother in a mental institution...It's a fantastically magnificent and involved book. It must be read to be understood as there is NO WAY I can do it justice.

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ALL IMAGES VIA GOOGLE.  NONE ARE MINE.
"Theresa was a quietly satisfied young teacher by day. But when the sun went down, her life was an endless, faceless whirl of bars and beds and men she'd never seen before and wouldn't see again. If she couldn't find love, she took chances on men who were better than no men at all. And learned, with each new night and each new nightmare, that finding her man was only the beginning."

4 comments:

  1. I hope you don't mind, I'm swiping this idea and doing a page on my blog. I love to read, and also, I'm trying out some of the books you discuss here! Thanks!
    www.thenotsospecialmother.com

    ReplyDelete
  2. I definitely agree with you on a few of these. V.C. Andrews, YES!Still one of the best series books out there.
    Go the F*CK to Sleep, Genius! I pulled that one out at a family party. It got passed around, and I let it be known that anyone who did not think it was funny was 'STUPID'.I still don't know if my great aunt really thought it was funny, or if she was afraid of me watching her from across the room making sure she was laughing.
    A Peoples History of the United States- what is crazy about this one, I bought a copy of this about 9 years ago because I was afraid I was going to start forgetting History stuff, as my kids were starting to learn it. So I figured it would be a little refresher book. It still has the faded Barnes&Noble receipt in it, on page 7. And that is where I left off. Sorry Kids, you are smarter than mom! (and they remind me every day)

    ReplyDelete
  3. I think I might steal this for my book blog. So fun!

    ReplyDelete
  4. Nice list. I'll definitely check these out on bookstore next week.

    ReplyDelete

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