Thursday, June 19, 2008

Reading can be fun again!

In the past monthish I reread The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, and read The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime by Mark Haddon (recommended to me by Britt and Martha). These mark the first books I have read and completed purely for my own pleasure, the last before those being Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows last August.

I really loved the Curious Incident, and highly recommend it to anyone who hasn't read it yet! My only complaint is that I felt like the ending was rushed. But maybe it didn't bother other people, but it kinda annoys me when a book changes pace suddenly. I feel like I'm trotting along nicely for 3/4 of the book, and then BAM we start galloping! I'd rather gallop the entire way through, or just stay trotting. I'd really love to see a movie made of this book. It'd be such a challenging adaptation, but with a fantastic screenplay, a really creative director, lots of narration, and an uber-talented lead actor (someone of Haley Joel Osment or Freddie Highmore caliber), it could be a really amazing film.

So, I'm on a roll now, and I've decided that I should do some summer reading. Here's my list so far:
  • The Shack by William P. Young (recommended to me by Ari and Heather)
  • The Road Less Traveled by M. Scott Peck (recommended to me by Dr. Adam Saenz)
  • Symptomatic by Danzy Senna (recommended to me by the $2.99 shelf at Hastings)
  • The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho (recommended to me by Cara)
  • Siddhartha by Hermann Hesse (recommended to me by Cara and Nobel)
  • Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides (recommended to me by Cara and Pulitzer)
Honestly, this is probably a little ambitious. If I at least finish the first two, then I'll be satisfied, and hopefully I can get to the others. It's certainly doable, I mean, I pretty much tore through the Curious Incident, so assuming that these books are just as interesting, I could finish them all.

Does anyone have any other recommendations for me? Or anyone care to share their summer reading lists?

On a different note, I was looking up Pulitzer Prize winners, and I discover that the year I was born, the Fort Worth Star Telegram won a Pulitzer!

Fort Worth (Tex.) Star-Telegram
For reporting by Mark J. Thompson which revealed that nearly 250 U.S. servicemen had lost their lives as a result of a design problem in helicopters built by Bell Helicopter -a revelation which ultimately led the Army to ground almost 600 Huey helicopters pending their modification.

Pretty cool, huh? I have a lot of Fort Worth pride, more so than I realized. Monday, I went to a Rilo Kiley concert in Austin, and the opening band was like, "We love Austin! Dallas?" and made a negative sound with her guitar, which made everyone yell or boo. So I yelled, "Fort Worth!" which prompted the girl next to me to yell, "F- yeah, Fort Worth!" She then turned to me and said, "You just made my night! I love how we have so much pride, we're like the biggest small town. Every time I go to a show, I hear at least one person yell about Fort Worth, it's awesome." Indeed, it is.


if walled in climb up said...

Hehe, Fort Worth does have this way of changing your blood to purple. ; ) Even after living there only two years, I know in my heart that Ft. Worth will always be better than Dallas. And when people tell me they're moving to Dallas, I'm all, "And instead you could be moving to Ft. Worth, right?!!" What a fun experience at the concert!

Galveston or Padre sounds really fun. I think I'll have to play it by ear a bit and see what the work schedule allows...

Did you ever decide anything about Colorado? Gosh, I so wish I could go with you, but it's just not going to work with my work. : ( But I hope you can go and that you have a blast!

And I'm so glad you loved Curious Incident. I know you're planning to read The Alchemist, so maybe if you love that one, you could read another of Paul Coelho's books. Shawn is reading Viktoria Decides to Die. It sounds really psychological and he really likes it. Good luck on the reading list!

if walled in climb up said...

Ooops, the book by Paulo Coelho was Veronika Decides to Die. Here is a review:

When Paulo Coelho (The Alchemist) was a young man, his parents had him committed to mental hospitals three times because he wanted to be an artist--an unacceptable profession in Brazil at the time. During his numerous forced incarcerations he vowed to write some day about his experiences and the injustices of involuntary commitment. In this fable-like novel, Coelho makes good on his promise, with the creation of a fictional character named Veronika who decides to kill herself when faced with all that is wrong with the world and how powerless she feels to change anything. Although she survives her initial suicide attempt, she is committed to a mental hospital where she begins to wrestle with the meaning of mental illness and whether forced drugging should be inflicted on patients who don't fit into the narrow definition of "normal." The strength and tragedy of Veronika's fictional story was instrumental in passing new government regulations in Brazil that have made it more difficult to have a person involuntarily committed. Like any great storyteller, Coelho has used the realm of fiction to magically infiltrate and alter the realm of reality. --Gail Hudson

Ben said...

I can recommend The Yiddish Policemen's Union heartily so far. Admittedly, I'm not done reading it, but I think it's worthwhile.

crackers and cheese said...

I decided against Colorado. It would have been awesome, but no one could go, and I realized that I wouldn't have as much fun by myself. But now that means I'll be spending several days with loved ones in the DFW area!

Britt, I knew I recognized that author's name! Yeah, I looked at that book when Shawn bought it, it's been added to the list!

Ben, from what I read on amazon, that does sound like an interesting book! I'd be interested in reading a spoiler-free review when you finish it, if you have time.

Kat(i)e said...

Thank you for stopping by my blog. I am not much of a reader - have many good intentions but a short attention span and some dodgy eyesight - it took me till January this year to finish HP and the DH! However, in order to try and return the music favour I would suggest one book that I am trying to finish before the end of summer (excluding the Bible!): Wicked by Gregory Maguire. I am about half way and love it and the musical is pretty great too (if that's your kind of thing). Very political and funny too, you have probably heard of it, the prequel to The Wizard of Oz. Fabulous!