Friday, January 13, 2012

Autumn Lingers

I went to my edit page to finish a post I started last week and stumbled instead on this half edited file of photos from last October.  It might be a bit "off season", but I say it's never too late, or too early, for anything spooky or autumny, my favorite time of year.  So, here ya go.  Look back and reminisce or look forward and cackle madly in anticipation.

And autumn truly is lingering here, now that I mention it.  We've had no snow to speak of and the autumn leaves are still dry and crackly all over the flower beds and gardens.  Although we've had the cold, the rest of winter appears to have been delayed elsewhere.  Will it ever make an appearance?  Or will we just skip straight on through to the first spring flowers of violets and crocus?  Time will tell....














Friday, January 06, 2012

Books Read 2011




Yeah, I know, don't blame everyone for wandering away.  Can't expect everyone to wait around forever when I don't bother posting.  Well, it wasn't a matter of not bothering, it was a matter of being .... okay, okay, I'll admit it. I've been seeing other websites. There, I said it.  Facebook.  Tumblr.  There might have been others.  And just a very busy, very traveling sort of year (again) and all my good intentions to blog always ended up being that last little thing I didn't have time to finish at the end of a day.  Maybe blogging more frequently can be a New Year's resolution of sorts?

So, my reading habits of 2011.  For the first time in years, I did not meet my challenge.  Granted, I didn't actually set a specific goal.  I just assumed that I would continue to meet the challenge I set years ago of 50 books a year, about one a week plus a couple of busy weeks off for good measure.  Between travel, family, and working on other goals, reading took a back burner.  In fact, there were a half dozen or so nights when I didn't read before turning off the light, something I can't remember ever happening in past years!

But a goal is simply a tool, not a master, and I feel no disappointment over having read less books this past year.   Okay, maybe a squidge of disappointment, as there are so many books I've been wanting to read or reread and there's just never enough time. 

Another thing I didn't keep up as well this year is my recording of what I read.  In fact, I'm not completely sure I remembered to write down every book I did read.  And, as you can see below, my monthly listing deteriorated into a sort of seasonal free for all.  With no further ado -


Behemoth by Scott Westerfeld
Under the Green Hill by Laura Sullivan
The Elegance of the Hedgehog by Muriel Barbery
Confessions of a Pagan Nun by Kate Horsley


Angela's Ashes by Frank McCourt
Something From the Nightside by Simon R. Green
The Goblin Wood by Hilari Bell
Dreams Underfoot by Charles de Lint


The French Gardener by Santa Montefiore
Fragile Eternity by Melissa Marr
The Help by Kathryn Stockett

April through September

Radiant Shadows by Melissa Marr
Skinny Bitch by Rory Freedom
The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
Murder in the Latin Quarter by Cara Black
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson
Swan for the Money by Donna Andrews
Murder in the Palais Royal by Cara Black
Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins
Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins
A Game of Thrones by George R. R. Martin
Widdershins by Charles de Lint
Dead Reckoning by Charlaine Harris
The Heart of Faerie Oracle by Wendy Froud
A Clash of Kings by George R. R. Martin
A Storm of Swords by George R. R. Martin
A Feast for Crows by George R. R. Martin


Changes by Jim Butcher
Pride and Prejudice and Zombies by Seth Grahame-Smith

November and December

Ghost Story by Jim Butcher
Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare
Side Jobs by Jim Butcher
The Wood Wife by Terri Windling
Shakespeare's Landlord by Charlaine Harris
Goliath by Scott Westerfeld

Thirty five (35) books in all.  Although anyone who has read G.R.R. Martin would probably allow me to count each of his books as two or three books worth of words.

This year seemed to be a lot about series - some old, some new, reading until I reached the last book or until I'm forced to sit and wait for the author to construct the next section of the bridge into his/her character's story.   There was a lot of YA books, lots of fantasy and not a small amount of steampunk. 

One thing I notice is that I didn't manage to read a single classic all year.  I try to read several a year and there were a number of titles that I'd actually been planning to get to specifically.  I did manage to add a fair number of new classic books to my home library.  I don't really know why I never ended up reading any of them.  I think between series and book club choices, there just never seemed to be the right moment.

I also didn't reread any books this year.  That was totally about no time.  I was determined to reread Harry Potter, all seven of 'em, before the last movie came out.  Didn't happen.

And I only managed to read two nonfiction books, one a short diet and health book and the other about faery cards, nothing ponderous or philosophical.  (although The Elegance of the Hedgehog might count towards the latter.)

A Place of Her Own by J. Christensen

Next post - my favorite reads of the year.