Friday, November 29, 2013

The Call of the Wild ~ Jack London

A couple of weeks ago, I participated in the Classics Spin #4, in which I made a list of 20 books from my Classics Club list and then was supposed to read whatever book had the number that the challenge facilitators chose.  I was hoping for #1, Persuasion, but They chose #10, which for me meant The Call of the Wild, also known as the shortest book on my whole list (except, MAYBE, for The Giver).  So I finished it in no time and then read Persuasion as well (review to come), giving my completion rate a nice boost.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

The Absolutely True Story of a Part-Time Indian ~ Sherman Alexie

I have somehow gotten horribly behind on book reviews again.  As in eight books behind.  Oops.  But never fear, fair bloggers.  I took the whole week off from work for Thanksgiving (!!!!!) so I should have no problem accomplishing my various goals of sewing double-sided place mats (CHECK), sewing pillowcases, hand making all of my Christmas cards, cooking vast amounts of food, reading at least one more book, hanging out with a friend who's visiting for four days, and writing eight blog posts (soon to be seven!).  Right?  Right!  I'm obviously not over-stretching myself at all!

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Allegiant ~ Veronica Roth

This post has spoilers for Allegiant, the third book in a trilogy.  If you don't want have most of the series spoiled, I suggest you read my posts about Divergent or Insurgent instead. 

I'm a little embarrassed to say how dorkily excited I got for Allegiant, the third book in the Divergent series.  But yeah - I had the release date on my iPhone reminders and while I managed to hold off on the day of the release date, I got it the weekend after, despite the fact that that was the weekend of the Texas Book Festival, where I had already bought a pile of books.  And then yes, I read Allegiant first even though it in no way promised to be the best of the lot.  What can I say?  I have a weakness for strong female leads...

Sunday, November 17, 2013

The Song of Achilles ~ Madeline Miller

The majority of my experience related to Greek myths is as follows: in 9th grade, I was supposed to read The Odyssey for my English class.  Evaluation included class discussions and an in-class essay.  In a mind-blowingly stupid move, I did not read the book or even go for the Spark Notes.  I repeat, I had to complete an IN-CLASS essay.  I have no idea what I was thinking.  So the day to write the essay came and I sat down and stared at the  essay prompts and wracked my brain for details from all those class discussions that I hadn't participated in. And nothing came.  Finally, after about 10 minutes of panic, I went to the front of the classroom, told the teacher I hadn't read the book, and asked if I could complete it that night for a two letter grade penalty.  She agreed and I spent that afternoon and evening in the company of an audiobook and a friend who had some knowledge of the epic poem.  I have no idea what that essay was about but I got the C and somehow did NOT learn my lesson (though I was at least better prepared for future in-class essays about books I hadn't read and never had to resort to those measures again).

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Classics Spin #4

I haven't read anything from my Classics Club list in a while so when I saw that the moderators were hosting a spin, I figured that it was meant to be.  I'm taking the whole week of Thanksgiving off of work (!!!) so I will definitely have time to read a classic then.  The way that it works is I make a list of twenty books from my list that I haven't read yet and post it on my blog.  Then, next week, they will choose a random number and I'm supposed to read that book by January.  Not too bad right?  Conveniently, when I took my list and removed all of the titles that I've read as well as those that I don't actually own yet, I had exactly twenty left.

Monday, November 11, 2013

The Financial Lives of the Poets ~ Jess Walter

The winner of the signed copy of Beautiful Ruins is ... (drumroll please) ... KAYLEIGH at Nylon Admiral!  Yay for her! Kayleigh, you can e-mail me at jlmarck AT gmail DOT com with your address and I will get it out to you.  I give you due warning: since you live on the other side of the world, I WILL be shipping it as cheaply as possible, so it might take a while to get there.

In addition to Beautiful Ruins, I picked up (and got signed) a copy of The Financial Lives of the Poets at the Texas Book Festival.  Ever since I read Beautiful Ruins, I've been meaning to read more by Jess Walter, so this was the perfect excuse to finally make that happen.  And it did not disappoint.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Texas Book Festival + GIVEAWAY

I'm a week late on this but what else is new??  I'm just glad I'm posting at al.  October 26-27, the Texas Book Festival was held in downtown Austin and it was fantastic!  I put my life on hold for the weekend and attended two days of talks, readings, and literary silliness, and it was great.  Oh, and I bought like a thousand books over the two days.  AND the Penguin Book Truck was there, which I was pretty excited about, as well as lots of vendors and authors and all sorts of fun stuff, like book club t-shirts and crazy Republicans picketing outside the Capitol (where a lot of the sessions were held).  I also had ice cream for lunch, because why not.