Month: September 2015

Apparently I’m practically psychic

So here’s the shortlist of books for the Man Booker Prize:

Marlon James (Jamaica); A Brief History of Seven Killings <– I chose this one
Tom McCarthy (UK); Satin Island
Chigozie Obioma (Nigeria); The Fishermen <– and this one
Sunjeev Sahota (UK); The Year of the Runaways
Anne Tyler (US); A Spool of Blue Thread <– and this one
Hanya Yanagihara (US); A Little Life <– and this one

Now I don't want to gloat or anything, but yesterday I chose four books that would be on the list, and they are all on there. Additionally, I chose three books that I didn't think would make it, and they aren't on it.

While I refrained from making a judgement on the six remaining books on the original longlist, I would say I'm still a winner because I knew enough to know what I didn't know. And it still all worked out fine in the end.

I think it says a lot about my life right now that this is one of the most exciting things to happen to me this week. Someone send help.

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Top Ten books on my fall TBR

I missed last week’s Top Ten Tuesday, whoops. My sanity was more important at the moment. This week, however, TTT is a good excuse for me to procrastinate and pretend like not everyone wants everything from me at every moment!

This week from Broke and Bookish it is top ten books on my TBR for the fall and I like this category because it is pretty close to what I will actually be able to accomplish until mid-December. I read 30-some books over the summer and that just isn’t happening now.

I chose books that are really on my TBR, not ones that are necessarily being published soon, although I have some of those. I guess I have two main themes, which are Creepy Books and also Wow I Really Need to Read This ARC books.

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Super-quick shortlist prediction

Tomorrow is the shortlist announcement for the Man Booker Prize and while I haven’t read half of them, I decided I would try to make predictions anyway because I own half of them, and that qualifies me in some way, right? I’ve been skimming through the book jackets, and let me tell you there is some interesting stuff in there (*please someone understand the Buffy reference*).

So here are the longlist books:

Bill Clegg (US) – Did You Ever Have a Family – read, no!
Anne Enright (Ireland) – The Green Road – read, nah
Marlon James (Jamaica) – A Brief History of Seven Killings shortlist
Laila Lalami (US) – The Moor’s Account
Tom McCarthy (UK) – Satin Island
Chigozie Obioma (Nigeria) – The Fishermen read, shortlist
Andrew O’Hagan (UK) – The Illuminations
Marilynne Robinson (US) – Lila reading, meh
Anuradha Roy (India) – Sleeping on Jupiter
Sunjeev Sahota (UK) – The Year of the Runaways
Anna Smaill (New Zealand) – The Chimes
Anne Tyler (US) – A Spool of Blue Thread read, shortlist
Hanya Yanagihara (US) – A Little Life reading, shortlist

I’ve read four and am in the process of reading two others. And I own two others. I want to read The Chimes so bad but it’s not really available in the States so I’d have to get it through a third-party seller on Amazon or something.

So of the ones I have read, I would say The Fishermen is in my number one spot. The Green Road and A Spool of Blue Thread were so similar to one another that I can’t say I’d pick one over the other. They were both really well written but if I had to chose I guess I would pick A Spool of Blue Thread because there was a tenderness towards the end that was quite touching. So far I’m not seeing Lila as a contender. A lot of people seem to like Did You Ever Have A Family and I don’t understand that.

Not having read most of these it’s a little difficult to pick, but I chose based on my own impressions, along with knowing that there are 5 books that I either don’t own yet or just haven’t gotten to experience in the least measure. So I picked four, and if I am correct on one or two of them I’ll be satisfied.

On classifying a book as a “classic”

I was messing around the other day on Goodreads, making some shelves, organizing my digital book life, avoiding life and responsibilities in general, when I decided to make a “classics” shelf. I quickly realized that defining a classic is a really difficult thing to do. I say that I have read a lot of them, and I own a lot, too, but what does that even mean? So I set about trying to define this for myself. You may not agree with my choices, but hey, the definition of a canon is problematic and changing, so this is my canon, not yours.

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Top ten characters I didn’t click with

This week from Broke and Bookish is on the top ten characters I didn’t click with, which is interesting because I try not to judge characters just because I don’t like them. But I think I can do this.

1) Sam from The Casualties. This character was one of the main reasons I didn’t like this book as well as I wanted to. He’s passive and yet makes some decisions that make no sense at all. I can understand a rude character, a broken character, a character who is lacking in all empathy and awareness of others. But a character who is just there and lets things happen to them with no regard one way or another?

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