Works in Progress

October 3, 2008 at 8:31 pm 4 comments

I’ve been a little busy — not so busy, though, that it’s kept me from buying six books in two weeks, and starting reading three of them. Here’s what you can expect in the upcoming weeks, as well as a few tidbits about my purchases recently:

* Arthur & George by Julian Barnes — I picked this up for 1 euro at Charlie Byrne’s in Galway, which I viewed as fate, since a friend and I had just been talking about it. It’s about Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and George Edalji, and since it was shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize, I’m guessing it’s pretty decent.

* Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince by J.K. Rowling — I couldn’t resist picking this up at some bargain-basement/thrift store in Galway, especially with a two and a half hour train ride ahead of me. I won’t review this one, but I’m loving the chance to read it again and pick up on all the stuff I missed earlier. I am kind of glad I waited on Harry Potter until most of the buzz was over…it’s giving me the chance to read it without getting caught up in the frenzy and judge objectively how good the series is and how likely it is to last.

* The Blind Assassin by Margaret Atwood — I am deeply in love with Margaret Atwood. Actually, I kind of want to be her. She is one of the most versitile and original writers, and when she finds her stride, everything that comes from her pen is so beautifully written and so true that I can hardly tear myself away. This book is getting a review once I finish it, and once I find the time. Oh, and by the way, read Oryx and Crake if you like dystopian novels, and The Robber Bride if you don’t. Also, The Edible Woman was my favorite Atwood for a long time, and even though it’s her first novel, it’s well worth reading.

* The Romance of the Forest by Anne Radcliffe — The Gothic novel that spawned all other Gothic novels! Radcliffe was so popular in her day, and she was enough of an influence on literature that Jane Austen felt the need to take the piss out of her (heh — pardon my Irish) in Northanger Abbey. Can’t wait to start this one!

* Chocolat by Jonanne Harris — I won’t review this one, I don’t think, since I’ve already read it, but I would recommend it, even to people who have seen the movie. It’s different from the movie, but it’s really fun and better-written; even though I loved the film, the book is better. I’m a big fan of Joanne Harris, especially Gentlemen and Players, but this one comes a close second.

* Christmas Books by Charles Dickens — Okay, this one is just bragging, but I was so freaking excited…I found an edition of this book at the Temple Bar Book Market for six euro, and was excited enough just to find an old copy of a Dickens book. Then I opened the cover, and read this: “Xmas 1903 / To Dear James / with best wishes / MOC”. The copyright date is 1894, the condition is beautiful, and I was so thrilled I couldn’t stop from grinning as I paid the lady running the stall. She probably thought I was crazy, but then most people here do, so I’m not worried about it.

* Great Expectations by Charles Dickens. As read by Hugh Laurie — I found this set of 3 CDs tucked away in the corner of the Classics section of Hodges Figgis, and I grabbed it like it was a gold nugget. And I suppose it is, even though I’m sure millions of copies are out there, this was the first I had seen, and I didn’t even know it existed. It was also the last one on the shelf, so for all I know, it could have been a direct gift from God, dropped there to reward me for actually going through with this crazy-ass idea to move to another country and get a master’s. Then again, if it was a heavenly gift, I suppose it wouldn’t have had an ISBN or, ya know, a price tag on it…anyway, I cannot WAIT to listen to this, and it might actually inspire an entry on Great Expectations, so be looking for that! Note: There is a an audio version of this on iTunes, but not read by Hugh Laurie, so I don’t know if it’s worth it.

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Entry filed under: Collections and Lists, News.

Take Me Away Welcome to the Club

4 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Kim  |  October 4, 2008 at 5:27 am

    Who is MOC? Seriously though, when I come visit, serious book shopping will ensue. =]

    Reply
  • 2. KT  |  October 4, 2008 at 3:51 pm

    I don’t know! My guess is that it’s someone O’Connell or O’Connor, because that’s usually how they’d write the initials for that last name, but it could be, like, Miranda Olivia Conroy or something. I bet whoever they are, though, they were Irish rather than British.

    Reply
  • 3. Kim  |  October 4, 2008 at 7:36 pm

    Oh…well that’s still kinda cool though. =]

    Reply
  • 4. KT  |  October 16, 2008 at 9:37 am

    What do you mean, that’s still kinda cool? It was always amazingly cool. Um. I don’t get it.

    Reply

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