Thursday, October 11, 2007

Book Meme

Rebecca James tagged me for this delightful book meme, so here goes:

Total number of books

Well, the numbers are somewhat shrinking, as I'm trying to utilize our local library more and more often. Of course that means that I end up on the wait line as number 237 of 309 holds for such morsels as Eat, Pray, Love (see Anno's book meme answers), so sometimes I'm impatient. Between my husband and me, we've collected far, far more books than any human beings should. Our favorite activity as a family is to sit around our living room reading harmoniously.

Last book read

Well, I'm still reading it, but my current book is Nightswimming by our very own Rebecca James. And I'm absolutely loving it so far! And I'd highly recommend jumping here and ordering yourself a copy. And no, that's not why she tagged me. ;-) I'm sure she had no idea I would embarrass her like this.

Last book bought

The Art of the Short Story, by Dana Gioia and R.S. Gwynn

5 meaningful books:

Bury Me Standing by Isabel Fonseca - I'm not sure why this book appeals to me so strongly, but it does. Isabel Fonseca writes beautifully and openly about the Roma/Gypsy culture and she is so incredibly thoughtful in her observations. She writes about Roma communities in various parts of the world, and I was absolutely fascinated from start to finish. I'm not a huge nonfiction reader, but I've read this book several times.

A Wrinkle in Time by the late, and very much lamented, Madeleine L'Engle - When I was a terribly misunderstood and miserable third grader, my school librarian kept me distracted with wonderful books. I probably spent as much of my free time during the day either reading in the library or following Mrs. Liss around like a lost puppy. One of the first books she found for me was A Wrinkle in Time. I think finding Meg and realizing there were other confused girls out there gave me strength that I needed at that time. And it's also just such a darned good book!

Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte - I came back to this book last year while teaching a section of British Literature. I've decided it must be the greatest love story of all time. I think I'm going to have to read it every couple of years, as I do Pride and Prejudice and Emma. The thing about Jane Eyre is that it's really such a modern book in its own way, and Jane is just a perfect heroine for all time.

Operating Instructions by Anne Lamott - I never thought I'd have two nonfiction books on this list. I read Anne Lamott's story of her son's birth and her best friend's horrific battle with breast cancer in the throws of hormones after giving birth to my son. I have to admit it doesn't wow me as much when I read it now, but it was the perfect book for that perfect time. And it is extraordinarily well-written, as all of her books are, and anyone who is pregnant should probably read it. ;-) How's that for my being bossy and imperious?

Okay, I have to cheat for the last one - I'm going to list authors, rather than books, and I'm not even going to mention specific books - Charlaine Harris (her Sookie Stackhouse series, in this case), Jasper Fforde and Janet Evanovich. These are my "big three" of laughter and just plain fun reading. They gave me the courage to break away from my literary style as a writer (which was never a good fit for me) and move on to the more humorous style that I write in today. They are my "go-to's" for holiday reading and they are better than m&m's. I don't love every single one of their books, but when they're at their best they never fail to make me smile.

Alright... my turn to tag... and I tag Luisa of Novembrance, Goofball of Goofballsworld, Jami of Not THAT different, Carol from Northwest Ladybug, Soccer Mom in Denial - and anyone else who would find this fun! Several others whom I would have tagged have already been... tagged!


anno said...

Meg was one of my favorite childhood heroines, too, and for very much the same reasons. Gave me hope, she did.

What a great list! Reminds me, it's time to re-read Pride & Prejudice!

Rebecca said...

I think it's time to reread Jane Eyre! Have you read Villette? I think you'd enjoy it.*blush*...

Goofball said...

oh my gosh, you tagged me....and I am so illiterate compared to you all!

Give me a couple of days to get me thinking, ok?

Jami said...

How many books? How the hell am I supposed to know that? Probably over a couple of thousand. No, really! You can start counting here.
And I did another book meme about a year ago, so I'm declaring myself to be technically exempt. (Yeah, I know - I'm lazy, too.) Oh, that meme is here.

Erica said...

I am also a Meg fan! My 6th grade teacher read it to us at the end of our busy days and this was when I fell in love with reading aloud and being read to.

And I have given Operating Instructions as a gift to no less than 20 women. Seriously. If you are in my life and you get pregnant you can count on getting this book from me.

Thanks for sharing. My wheels are spinning!

Lapa said...




Please, add it to your favourites.

soccer mom in denial said...

Alright I'm usually meme adverse but this one I was excited to read and very honored to be tagged. I do love books.

I will do it within the week.

Anonymous said...

During the past three years, my book collection has been overwhelmed with everything parenting. And I have a stack of even more to review! My current list of reads is...monochromatic.

Hey, I'd love an invite to The Buzz. You can e-mail me at admin (at)!

anno said...

Also, I've got to second your recommendation of Nightswimming. Great characterization of those early days of motherhood and of a relationship where expectations are not entirely shared.

Um, Rebecca, what can we do to goad you along to the end of your next manuscript?

Betsy said...

I loved Meg too!

And it seems like Eat, Pray, Love is topping everybody's list. It sounds fabulous-- I definitely want to read that one.

On another topic, I tried "I'm a Little Teapot" out at the kindergarten on Thursday and they LOVED it! Thanks again for the help! :-)

Avery Gray said...

Oh, I'm with you on "A Wrinkle in Time" and "Jane Eyre". Fantastic books, both.

painted maypole said...

golly, it's all about books in the blogosphere of late, isn't it? enjoyed reading this!

Fourier Analyst said...

Anno tagged me and I'll be playing this week, even though I am totally embarassed and feeling even more inadequate as I read the lovely selections everyone else writes about.(sigh) I hope you'll still visit even if you are completely disappointed in me. Love your selections and glad to report I have even read a few, back in the day when I was still reading books...!

Goofball said...

I played...check it out. I share FA's feeling though!!