Friday, December 31, 2010

RIP 2010

Overly knotty language repels me. If I don’t understand a beginning stanza, I will often just amble off to something easier. I can be a fickle squirrel who avoids the nuts that are hardest to crack.

Nevertheless, there is something to be said for immediacy. A between-the-eyes blam of an opening line can be a sign of authorial confidence, and for me that’s as good a reason as any to bond with a book—or, well, portions of a book. It doesn’t even have to be a blam that brings my random scanning to a pause—it’s often a whisper.

I don’t harbor any guilt about the philosophy of Just Flipping Around—they’re only books, after all, and I can do what I want with them. But I have noticed, in conversations with friends of mine over the years, that a lot of people cling to a Clean Your Plate approach to the printed word. If these erstwhile valedictorians don’t dutifully read a book straight through, they feel they are doing something wrong.
Jeff Gordinier, Link

Happy New Year!

This is a post dedicated to the poor pitiful books that I did not finish in 2010.

Not all of them are poor and/or pitiful. I just didn't finish them. I'm really not one for putting certain books or authors down. If I can't get past a few chapters in a book, then it's just not the book for me. Someone else might get more out of it than I. But life is short, and I can't waste it on what doesn't work for me.

Or maybe I'm just lazy. No...I know I'm lazy. Lethargic is my middle name.

Books not finished in 2010:

Adulthood Rites, Octavia Butler
Infinite Jest, David Foster Wallace -- too infinite
Anthropology of an American Girl, Hilary Hamann -- I know! I even wrote a post about it.
Remarkable Creatures, Tracy Chevalier
The Queen of the Damned, Anne Rice -- surprising letdown from first 2 books
Neuromancer, William Gibson -- I'm going to try this one again next year...
The Dispossessed, Ursula LeGuin -- I'll also be trying this one again...
Dune, Frank Herbert -- Ditto. Seeing a pattern?

Here's to a more prosperous and committed 2011.

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