Wednesday, December 31, 2008

2008 in review - what I read

2008 is drawing to a close, and as is traditional it's a very dull New Year's Eve here, with the big festivities consisting of putting a dent in all the Christmas cookies and candy, and watching an episode or two of Mystery Science Theater 3000. 

However, in keeping with the year-end mindset, here's the list of books I read this year:

Phallic Frenzy: Ken Russell and His Films - Joseph Lanza
The Maltese Falcon - Dashiell Hammett
The Shipping News - Annie Proulx *
Wyrd Sisters - Terry Pratchett
The Painted Veil - Somerset Maugham *
The Terror - Dan Simmons
Casino Royale - Ian Fleming
Courtesan - Diane Haeger **
Passion - Judith Morgan **
In the Time of the Butterflies - Julia Alvarez
Rogue Male - Geoffrey Household
Marathon Man - William Goldman
Duma Key - Stephen King
Then We Came to the End - Joshua Ferris
Madame Bovary - Gustave Flaubert
Men at Arms - Terry Pratchett
Stick - Elmore Leonard **
The Thrall's Tale - Judith Lindbergh **
The Stand - Stephen King *
Catching the Big Fish: Meditation, Consciousness, and Creativity - David Lynch
To Kill a Mockingbird - Harper Lee *
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone - J. K. Rowling *
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets - J. K. Rowling *
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban - J. K. Rowling *
A Moveable Feast - Ernest Hemingway *
Witches Abroad - Terry Pratchett
A Tan and Sandy Silence - John D. MacDonald
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire - J. K. Rowling *
A Game of Thrones - George R. R. Martin *
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix - J. K. Rowling *
A Clash of Kings - George R. R. Martin *
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince - J. K. Rowling *
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows - J. K. Rowling
The Moonstone - Wilkie Collins **
A Storm of Swords - George R. R. Martin *
A Feast for Crows - George R. R. Martin
Shatterday - Harlan Ellison
Talk Talk - T. C. Boyle
We Have Always Lived in the Castle - Shirley Jackson
Wideacre - Philippa Gregory **
The Truth - Terry Pratchett
Michael Tolliver Lives - Armistead Maupin
The Preservationist - David Maine *
Loving Frank - Nancy Horan **
Clandestine - James Ellroy
The Nature of Monsters - Clare Clark
The Falls - Joyce Carol Oates
The Pillars of the Earth - Ken Follett
Sick Puppy - Carl Hiaasen
Something Wicked This Way Comes - Ray Bradbury *
The Tea Rose - Jennifer Donnelly *
The Crimson Petal and the White - Michel Faber *
The Road - Cormac McCarthy 
Zombies of the Gene Pool - Sharyn McCrumb **
Hogfather - Terry Pratchett
My Lady of Cleves - Margaret Campbell Barnes **
Lonesome Dove - Larry McMurtry *
A Stir of Echoes - Richard Matheson

* = re-read
** = unfinished

58 titles for the year, which isn't nearly as impressive as it seems. Lots of re-reads this year, mostly because I was heavily occupied with writing my mystery MS. I have a harder time explaining the number of books that, for whatever reason (failed to click, I was distracted by something shiny) didn't work for me and were unfinished.

Overall I'm pleased with what I read. Terry Pratchett's Discworld books continue to be a joy. Duma Key was a fine return to form for Stephen King. Phallic Frenzy and Catching the Big Fish were intriguing peeks into the minds of two of my favorite movie directors. The Harry Potter and Song of Ice and Fire series hold up to being re-read. And there were plenty of new discoveries: The Terror, The Road, A Stir of Echoes, The Falls, The Nature of Monsters, and The Pillars of the Earth. 

I'm hoping for 2009 to make more of a dent in the To-Be-Read shelves, which are ridiculously full even by my standards. So far the first book to be finished in 2009 is Anne Enright's The Gathering - so far I like it but I'm not entirely sure I like where it's heading. Time will tell.

1 comment:

  1. Hey Kelly - I've been reading this regularly, and noticed that you don't have many comments. So I decided to remedy that. I chose this post not because I came even close to reading this many books last year, but because I wanted to mention a few in particular. I just read The Road for the first time about 2 months ago and loved it even though it wasn't a particularly FUN time. Stir of Echoes is great; read that after seeing the movie and liking it. Duma Key is one where I agree completely with your assessments - I love pretty much everything The Man writes but this was my favorite one of his in quite a while. And finally, I just picked up The Terror yesterday as I've heard nothing but good things about it. However, I am currently reading what may be one of the ultimate guilty pleasures (for my warped sensibilities, anyway): The Dirt. Yes, it's the story of Motley Crue. I am laughing quite hard at picturing your face reading that sentence. Anyway, love the blog, lady - keep it up!