Saturday, September 25, 2010

State of the Blog, Part One: The Lists

I love fall, with that back-to-school snap in the air that always fills me with energy.  I am invigorated by autumn and always feel like I can accomplish a thousand things before the end of the year.  With that in mind, let's see how much I've accomplished so far.

This is the first of my quarterly blog assessment posts.  This first part addresses the book lists. Part Two, coming soon, will take a look at the author lists.  Part Three will deal with the challenges I joined this year.

My List of Lists is over in the right-side column. These are Prize Winners, Must Reads, and other lists of books I have read or intend to read for some reason or another. Also in the right-side column is a list of my favorite authors. I add to both lists from time to time.

So far in 2010, I have read a total of 28 books from my various book lists. That is better progress than I would have guessed, but I am still daunted by the number of books on my TBR shelves. I should spend more time reading and less time playing with my lists.

THE LISTS


1899 Top 100
Books read so far: 7/100
Books read in 2010: one, The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexander Dumas
Books I hope to read in 2010: one more, either:
  1. The Moonstone by Willkie Collins, or
  2. Quo Vadis by Henryk Sienkiewicz
Books on my TBR shelf: 16

All-TIME Top 100
Books read so far: 75 and 2/3 of 100
Books read in 2010: 2 and 1/3
  1. The Big Sleep by Raymond Chandler
  2. Play It As It Lays by Joan Didion (reviewed here)
  3. The Two Towers by J. R. R. Tolkien (one-third of The Lord of the Rings)
Books I hope to read in 2010: no more
Books on my TBR shelf: 14

Anthony Burgess
Books read so far: 28/99
Books read in 2010: 2
  1. A Single Man by Christopher Isherwood (reviewed here)
  2. Titus Groan by Mervin Peake (reviewed here)
Books I hope to read in 2010: one more (The Mosquito Coast by Paul Theroux)
Books on my TBR shelf: 20

BBC's Big Read
Books read so far: 57 and 2/3 of 100
Books read in 2010: 5 and 1/3 (wow!)
  1. Black Beauty by Anna Sewell
  2. Gormenghast by Mervyn Peake (reviewed here)
  3. Cold Comfort Farm by Stella Gibbons (reviewed here)
  4. The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexander Dumas
  5. The Two Towers by J. R. R. Tolkien (one-third of The Lord of the Rings)
  6. Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier (reviewed here)
Books I hope to read in 2010: no more, but I'm on a roll, so who knows
Books on my TBR shelf: 7

Book Club
Books read so far: 18/18
Books read in 2010: 3
  1. The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao by Junot Diaz
  2. The Red Tent  by Anita Diamant
  3. Small Island by Andrea Levy (reviewed here)
Books I hope to read in 2010: one more (but I don't yet know what it will be)
Books on my TBR shelf: none

College Board
Books read so far: 76/101
Books read in 2010: one (Beowulf, translated by Seamus Heaney)
Books I hope to read in 2010: one more (The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath)
Books on my TBR shelf: 18

Costa Book of the Year
Books read so far: 6/24
Books read in 2010: 3
  1. The Secret Scripture by Sebastian Barry
  2. Beowulf, translated by Seamus Heaney 
  3. Small Island by Andrea Levy  (reviewed here)
Books I hope to read in 2010: no more
Books on my TBR shelf: one

Easton Press
Books read so far: 57/100
Books read in 2010: 2
  1. The Pilgrim's Progress by John Bunyan
  2. The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexander Dumas 
Books I hope to read in 2010: no more
Books on my TBR shelf: 32

Edgar Award
Books read so far: 8/56
Books read in 2010: 3
  1. New Orleans Mourning by Julie Smith
  2. Citizen Vince by Jess Walter (reviewed here
  3. Down River by John Hart
Books I hope to read in 2010: no more, I don't think
Books on my TBR shelf: 4

Erica Jong
Books read so far: 32/100
Books read in 2010: 3
  1. Cold Comfort Farm by Stella Gibbon (reviewed here)
  2. Play It As It Lays by Joan Didion (reviewed here
  3. Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier (reviewed here)
Books I hope to read in 2010: 3 more, if I'm lucky
  1. Orlando by Virginia Woolf
  2. The Autobiography of Alice B. Toklas by Gertrude Stein
  3. The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath
Books on my TBR shelf: 22

French Connection
Books read so far: 46/112 (and counting -- there are more books to add to the list)
Books read in 2010: 4
  1. The Flaneur: A Stroll Through the Paradoxes of Paris by Edmund White (reviewed here
  2. L'Affaire by Diane Johnson
  3. My Life in France by Julia Child (reviewed here)
  4. The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexander Dumas  
Books I hope to read in 2010: one more (The Autobiography of Alice B. Toklas by Gertrude Stein
Books on my TBR shelf: 25

Books read so far: I don't keep track, because I delete them after I read them
Books read in 2010: same
Books I hope to read in 2010: 13 more (I'll be busy)
  1. The Night Gardener by George Pelecanos
  2. The Art of Disappearing by Ivy Pochoda
  3. The Evolution of Shadows by Jason Quinn Malott
  4. Soldiers in Hiding by Richard Wiley
  5. Jumptown: The Golden Years of Portland Jazz 1942-1957 by Robert Dietsche
  6. Another Way the River Has: Taut True Tales from the Northwest by Robin Cody   
  7. An Architectural Guidebook to Portland by Bart King 
  8. The Lost Summer of Louisa May Alcott by Kelly O'Connor McNees
  9. A Geography of Secrets by Fredrick Reuss  
  10. To the Woods: Sinking Roots, Living Lightly, and Finding True Home by Evelyn Searle Hess 
  11. 42 States of Grace by Maureen Hovenkotter
Books on my TBR shelf: 11

James Tait Black Memorial Prize
Books read so far: 8/96
Books read in 2010: one (The Secret Scripture by Sebastian Barry; for my Battle of the Prizes, British Version challenge)
Books I hope to read in 2010: 3
  1. G by John Berger; also for my Battle of the Prizes, British Version challenge
  2. Brazzaville Beach by William Boyd
  3. The Mosquito Coast by Paul Theroux
Books on my TBR shelf: 11


LT Early Reviewers

Books read so far: 27/30
Books read in 2010: 8
  1. A Single Man by Christopher Isherwood (reviewed here)
  2. Maimonides: and the Biblical Prophets by Israel Drazin
  3. Homer and Langley by E. L. Doctorow (reviewed here)
  4. The Wall in My Head: Words and Images from the Fall of the Iron Curtain, published by Words Without Borders Anthologies (reviewed here)
  5. Short Stories, Book I by Anton Chekhov (reviewed here)
  6. A Week in December by Sebastian Faulks (reviewed here
  7. Burmese Lessons: A True Love Story by Karen Connelly (reviewed here)
  8. Peaceful Places, Los Angeles by Laura Randall (reviewed here)
Books I hope to read in 2010: 2 more
  1. The New York Stories by Elizabeth Hardwick
  2. Beautiful Maria of My Soul by Oscar Hijuelos 
Books on my TBR shelf: 2

Man Booker Prize

Books read so far: 21/43
Books read in 2010: one (The White Tiger by Aravind Adiga)
Books I hope to read in 2010: 2 more (for my Battle of the Prizes, British Version challenge)
  1. G by John Berger 
  2. The Sea, the Sea by Iris Murdoch
Books on my TBR shelf: 15

MLA's 30
Books read so far: 22/30
Books read in 2010: 1 and 1/3
  1. (The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver
  2.  The Two Towers by J. R. R. Tolkien (one-third of The Lord of the Rings)
Books I hope to read in 2010: no more
Books on my TBR shelf: 4

Modern Library
Books read so far: all of them!
Books read in 2010: zero (finished this list a couple of years ago)
Books I hope to read in 2010: none
Books on my TBR shelf: zero

National Book Award

Books read so far: 26/64
Books read in 2010: zero
Books I hope to Read in 2010: 2 (for the Battle of the Prizes, American Version challenge)
  1. Them by Joyce Carol Oates
  2. The Collected Stories of Katherine Anne Porter
Books on my TBR shelf: 13

NBCC Award
Books read so far: 16/34
Books read in 2010: one (The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao by Junot Diaz)
Books I hope to read in 2010: one more (Counterlife by Philip Roth)
Books on my TBR shelf: 11

Nobel Laureates
Authors read so far: 20/106
Books read in 2010: one (Beowulf, translated by Seamus Heaney)
Books I hope to read in 2010: one more (Kristin Lavransdatter by Sigrid Undset)
Books on my TBR shelf: 32 (but most by authors already read)

Observer's Top 100
Books read so far: 59/100
Books read in 2010: 3 and 1/3

  1. Pilgrim's Progress by John Bunyan
  2. The Big Sleep by Raymond Chandler 
  3. The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexander Dumas
  4. The Two Towers by J. R. R. Tolkien (one-third of The Lord of the Rings)
Books I hope to read in 2010: no more
Books on my TBR shelf: 18

Orange Prize
Books read so far: 3/14
Books read in 2010: 2
Books I hope to read in 2010:
  1. Small Island by Andrea Levy (reviewed here)
  2. The Idea of Perfection by Kate Grenville (reviewed here)
Books on my TBR shelf: 4

Oregon Books
Books read so far: 3/20
Books read in 2010: zero
Books I hope to read in 2010: maybe none
Books on my TBR shelf: 2

PEN/Faulkner

Books read so far: 7/30
Books read in 2010: zero
Books I hope to read in 2010: 2
  1. Soldiers in Hiding by Richard Wiley (also on my Guilt List)
  2. Seaview by Toby Olson
Books on my TBR shelf: 12

Pulitzer Prize
Books read so far: 40/85
Books read in 2010: one (The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao by Junot Diaz)
Books I hope to read in 2010: at least 2 (for the Battle of the Prizes Challenge) 
  1. The Collected Stories of Katherine Anne Porter
  2. Breathing Lessons by Anne Tyler
Books on my TBR shelf: 19

Radcliffe's Top 100
Books read so far: 88/100
Books read in 2010: 4 and 1/3
  1. Where Angels Fear to Tread by E.M. Forster (reviewed here)
  2. O Pioneers! by Willa Cather
  3. The War of the Worlds by H. G. Wells (reviewed here)  
  4. The Two Towers by J. R. R. Tolkien (one-third of The Lord of the Rings
  5. Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier (reviewed here
Books I hope to read in 2010: 2
  1. Orlando by Virginia Woolf
  2. The Autobiography of Alice B. Toklas by Gertrude Stein
Books on my TBR shelf: 8

RCR Top 10
Books read so far: 10/10 (it's my list)
Books read in 2010: one (Cold Comfort Farm by Stella Gibbon; reviewed  here)
Books I hope to Read in 2010: probably none -- one change this year is a big step already
Books on my TBR shelf: who knows?

Well-Stocked Bookcase
Books read so far: 35/60
Books read in 2010: zero
Books I hope to Read in 2010: 2
  1. The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath
  2. Them by Joyce Carol Oates
Books on my TBR shelf: 13


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