Read in March 2010

1. Little Mother Meg, by Ethel Turner
Australian children's classic! Well, it made me happy and it's not saccharine at all. Props to you, Ethel.

2. The Power of One, by Bryce Courtenay
This is a fat novel which I thought was an autobiography, about a boy growing up in South Africa in the thirties and forties. It's not fine literature, but it's a rich, enjoyable story. Pretty gritty in parts, but optimistic overall.

3. Jane Eyre, by Charlotte Brontë
I read this aloud with my friends on the floor above me. Gothic novels can be so strange and ridiculous, but it makes them juicy, you know? True for this one. And Jane is a lovely and compelling narrator.

4. The Communist Manifesto, by Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels
Assigned reading; surprise, surprise. It didn't blow me away, but I like the feeling of getting important thought like this straight from the horse's mouth.

5. Anthology of Modern Chinese Poetry, ed. and trans. by Michelle Yeh
A stunning collection of twentieth-century poets. There are dozens of poets represented in the volume, and I didn't love all of them, of course, but there are some real jewels, and as a whole, the anthology somehow has a unified flavor. You'll see what I mean if you read it.

6. Chalice, by Robin McKinley
I definitely liked this better than Beauty, the only other of her books I've read, but the central conflict didn't feel very...urgent to me.

If you've read any of these, what did you think? Been reading anything excellent lately?


bookbutterfly (Jacqueline the Nerdette) 4/09/2010 6:31 PM  

Ooh, Jane Eyre! Have you read this one before? Oh, and if you haven't already, watch the new movie! It's amazing, and so beautiful. :)

I still have yet to read Chalice, but I haven't even read Beauty yet! Everyone keeps telling me to, and I would love to just have this one time where I could just sit down and read all of Robin McKinley's books, like in one summer or something. :)

cuileann 4/09/2010 6:33 PM  

bookbutterfly - No, it was my first time reading it! And OH my goodness, I love the new adaptation. Love, love, love.

Inkgirl 4/09/2010 6:56 PM  

A lot of Sylvia Plath and a good dose of Revolutionary Road and The Awakening, the first of which made me cry, but other than that, not much. I do wish I had more time to read. Oh, and I read another Jodi Picoult after the urging of a friend. I once appreciated her earlier works, but I think that, now, she's trying too hard to play to the crowd with unnecessary drama, titillation, and all.

(Though, having taunted a kid with Aspergers in elementary school myself, it made me feel a bit ashamed, and was a bit eye opening.)

spider 4/09/2010 7:25 PM  

Of those, I've read Chalice, which was good, but I preferred Spindle's End, and The Communist Manifesto, which I read for one of my classes last year. It was dull, but at least it's short.

I also just finished Cross My Heart and Hope to Spy yesterday. It rocked.

cuileann 4/09/2010 11:44 PM  

Inkgirl - Mmm, all on my to-read list. (I've read The Bell Jar but none of her poetry!) Jodi Picoult...I haven't touched her myself, but that fits with what my father thought of her books.

spider - I shall give Spindle's End a try. I still believe there is a Robin McKinley fan in me somewhere. Re: the Gallagher Girl books, oh man, I know. SO much fun. I envy you having the next one ahead of you! (I think the second's my favorite.)

Erin 4/10/2010 9:23 AM  

I'm reading Franny and Zooey by J.D. Salinger and it's SOSOSOGOOD.

bookbutterfly (Jacqueline the Nerdette) 4/10/2010 10:57 AM  

Oh goodness, what a treat to read it for the first time! And aloud, too! How fun! I really want to watch that new adaptation. I heard they're making a new one, and I actually reeeaaallly don't want them to. The Ruth Wilson/Toby Stephens one can't be beaten!

cuileann 4/10/2010 12:46 PM  

Erin - Ah, I read that when I was...fifteen? and was like, What is this even about? Could probably use a reread if you like it that much.

bookbutterfly - You're probably the third person to say that. :) Yeah, definitely not. The 2006 is simply...gorgeous. It really inspires my eye.

geekspawn 4/11/2010 7:00 PM  

I don't like Spindle's End all that much. It was okay, but the plot felt basically nonexistent.

cuileann 4/11/2010 7:10 PM  

geekspawn - Hmm. What Robin McKinley would you recommend?

geekspawn 4/11/2010 7:51 PM  

I liked Beauty, but I never actually even finished any of her other books.

cuileann 4/12/2010 11:10 AM  

geekspawn - Whereas Beauty is the only other of hers that I've read, and I didn't like it that much...haha.

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