Thursday, January 03, 2013

My Reading List: A Year in Review

I'm not sure I can remember every book I read this year, but I thought I would give a short review of some of them.  I should start off by saying that I really have loved reading the classics this year, and hope to read many more in 2013.  Even though I had a fairly good education, I didn't read most of the classics in school.  At one point I considered majoring in english, but ended up reading weird books instead of classics.  My high school class read "Alice in Wonderland".  That was tedious for me.  When I started college, I signed up for "literature of the absurd".  What was I thinking?  We ended up reading Alive in Wonderland again!  Sigh..  We also read some really weird stuff, including Kafka.  Anyway, so now I am playing catch up trying to read the books I missed out on in college.  I love that I can get most classics for free on my Kindle!

Unbroken:  This is a great book about a WW2  POW who suffered greatly in the concentration camps.  It's always amazing to read about the resiliency of the human spirit.  It's not a classic, but I loved it.  5 thumbs up for this book!

Great Expectations:  I had a hard time with this book at first.  The plot, for me, was all over the place, and I couldn't seem to make any connections in the story.  My neighbor in America is an english teacher, so I sought her advice, and she encouraged me to stick with it to the end.  I didn't have "great expectations, but I stuck with it, and I'm glad I did because I ended up loving the book.  I give this 4 thumbs up.

Emma:  This book kind of put a barrier in the way of my reading.  I have been on a kick to finish what I start, so I was bound and determined to finish this book before starting another.  But I disliked it so much that I found it hard to pick up.  My "teacher neighbor" insinuated that I missed the irony in the story line.  I guess so, but for me it just drug on and on.  Pages and pages of idiotic dialog.  It took me forever to finish this book, and I don't think I could bring myself to ever read it again.  Sorry Jane Austen.

Jane Eyre:  Now this was a great book!  This is moved to my "favorite books" list. I'm not sure it would be my absolute favorite, but it is right up there!  On a 5 thumb scale, I would have to give it 5 thumbs with a pinky finger to boot!  :)

Dracula:  I really wanted to read this in October so that I could finish at Halloween.  But Emma held me hostage that month, so I never got around to reading it until December.  I loved this book!  It was quite surprising to me that it was so graphic (in a violence way).  It was written in 1897, and I guess I thought that this kind of novel wouldn't be socially acceptable in that time period.  But it is really a love story at heart, and written very well.  I think that I have been well educated in "draculanomics" :) because I knew all about vampires before reading this book.  That may have helped me when reading it, because sometimes it was a little vague.  I must say that the ending was a little abrupt for me.  For that reason only, I only give it 4 1/2 thumbs up.  :)

Right now, at the advice of my neighbor, I am reading Wuthering Heights.  So far I like this book, so I have high expectations for it.  I have a whole list of classics in my reading queue, but I'm not sure what I will read next.  Any suggestions?


Vid said...

I hated how they never explained how Johnathan Harker escaped from Dracula's castle at the beginning.

Maxi said...

Know what you mean about the struggle to stick with a book you don't like, D.

May 2013 be a blessed year ~ Maxi

Rummuser said...

Excellent choice and I vote for all of them with you.

shackman said...

Dracula was great - ditto Frankenstein. Last week I read 3 mysteries - first time I had the time to read in a while so I spent my time with Kate Shugak, Doc Ford and my pal Harry Dresden. mNot quite classics yet but who knows.....

Maria Perry Mohan said...

'Great Expectations is a great favourite of mine, as you might say if you were that way inclined. Remember how Joe Gargery talks?

Nene said...

If you haven't read The Book Thief yet, it is a must for reading - one of my favorites! Here's some others I have read that I really liked: The Christmas Sweater, Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet, The Help, The Forgotten Garden, The Education of Little Tree, Mrs. Aris Goes to Paris (an old one, don't know if you can find it-a very quick read). If you want a classic - my favorite classic is Les Miserables! Hang in there if you read it cause Victor Hugo was being paid by the word I think. :0) He has some profound thoughts and quotes in there. I've read it 3 times and have decided the next time I read it I'll read it with a highlighter. :0P

Delirious said...

@Vid: I thought he scaled the wall to get out, just like he did to go to the Count's room. Yea, it was vague though.

@Shackman: I do want to read FRankenstein soon. THanks for reminding me!

@Maria: Yes, I LOVE the way he talked! I'm reading Wuthering Heights now, but the "cockney" in that book is a little harder for me to understand. It still makes it more interesting. :)

@Nene: I can't remember if I have read Les Miserables before. Now that I've seen movies of it, I can't remember if I read it. Maybe I'll read that next. So my queue so far is Les Miserables, and Frankenstein. :)

Amber said...

I loved Dracula, I could believe such a classic could be a page turner! LOL I read Sense & Sensibility as a teenager and it was a page turner too, so give Jane Austen a second chance. Also, I just really love Charles Dickens, his books can be hard sometimes, but the stories are sooo good that it is worth it. I really liked David Copperfield. Also, and I haven't read these books since, but in High School I really loved Crime & Punishment and Dante's Inferno.