Saturday, November 24, 2007

20 reasons to extend my vacation at home

(as if I needed more.)

Since I'm doing the "From the Stacks" challenge and reading 5 books from my stack of "to reads" at home (meaning my apartment), well, "to reads" have been on my mind. I went through our (many, many) bookshelves at home and picked 5 "From the Stacks" challenge books from a few of them.

From the bookshelf in the sewing room:
Flaubert's Parrot (because my grandma loves, and I feel guilty for not ready any, Barnes)
American Gods (because apparently I have decided I think Neil Gaiman is a genius, despite the only books I've read by him being Coraline and Good Omens)
Portrait of a Lady (because I haven't read ANY James! Terrible.)
The Outsiders (because I didn't read it when I was little, but I claim to recognize references to it like, "Stay Gold, Ponyboy")
Tanglewreck (because I read a Winterson once and loved it, and then got this for Mom, thinking it was the perfect blend of good lit and YA lit, and haven't read it myself -- and I don't think she has either)

From the bookshelf in my room:
Hotel World (because "The Accidental" was surprisingly amazing)
Beowulf (because I am a fantasy nerd at heart and need to know the roots of it all)
Paddy Clarke Ha Ha Ha (because Casey says so)
Galatea 2.2 (because Caryl bought it for me years ago, or loaned it to me, or something, and I read "Plowing the Dark" and didn't much care for it, but I hear this one is much better, and plus he won a National Book Award last year)
I Cannot Tell a Lie, Exactly (oddly enough! because years ago, in my Diaryland days, I had internet friends, just like I do now, only weirder since it was like 1998, and one of them recommended this, and I bought it and have never read it)

From the bookshelf in my sister's room:
Tropic of Cancer (because I read excerpts of it for my continuing studies class about American writers in Paris, and found it really amazing)
Anna Karenina (because it's there)
House of Leaves (because Lucie loved it back in the day, and I started it and was curious but was too terrified by her descriptions of being terrified to continue it, and because I am a terrible hipster)
The Human Stain (because it's Roth)
pick one of any Nabokov (I don't know which to read, after Lolita, but I know I need to)

From the bookshelf in my mom's room:
Gilead (because it's supposed to be good, and it won something too, or she did)
Tess of the D'Urbervilles (because I have this sick fascination with women's downfalls in the 19th century, and because I really liked Jude the Obscure, and because I am a nerd)
Watership Down (because my mom says so. Also, I have my own copy of this, and it could easily have made it into the real From the Stacks challenge)
A Tree Grows in Brooklyn (because it's incredibly shameful that I started it a year ago, and put it down despite the fact that I was loving it. I also own a copy of this)
The Kite Runner (because apparently you are not a good American until you've read this)

And there are many runners-up:
Blindness (Saramago)
any number of forlorn Faulkner books
The Sun Also Rises (I know, I know, I'm sure I wouldn't like it, but I feel bad for never finishing it)
Ian McKellan's Black Dogs
Birdsong, by Faulks
The Reader (THREE copies!!)
Mason & Dixon AND Gravity's Rainbow
The Scarlet Pimpernel
A.B. Guthrie's Big Sky

(Those are only the ones I took the time to write down. And! I neglected to include the bookshelf in the living room. Ah, so many books, so little time...)


el super said...

ok i also have not read the outsides and i think you should read blindness cuz it has that creepy handmaid's tail feel to it but is better written and perhaps more philosophical.

el super said...

oh and i might be the only person in the country to be honest and say i didn't really care for the kite runner. i felt liek i was supposed to like it but i felt very meh about it. perhaps you will feel the same way. it's an easy quick read though

Emily said...

i'll let go your comment about blindness being better than handmaid's tale since i LOVE the latter so much. but good to know! i guess i will push that up on my reading list. as for the kite runner, you are not alone, but there are a lot of devotees, and i feel like i need to read that before i read his second book which casey LOVED.

Anonymous said...

Skip The Kiterunner and go straight to the second one. Life is short and reading lists are long.