Saturday, July 03, 2010

No Time To Read

I have never really understood when people say they haven't time to read. For me, reading is like breathing. A necessary part of life. Without something to read I feel adrift and deprived. I read every single day - thrillers, chick-lit, mysteries, romances, biographies, magazines and newspapers. I re-read old favourites. And re-read and re-read and re-read - some are on my regular annual reading list, some I read every couple of years. The staff at the local library know me by name, the lady who looks after the book department at Big W knows my face and is usually keen to recommend something new or suggest something that she thinks I'll like. Yes, she has an idea of what I like. I'm not sure if that says something about how good she is at her job or how often I'm there, or maybe a little bit of both.
I never really understood it until I hit June. You might have noticed that my reading list hasn't been updated for some time. I've been busy knitting and I really haven't mastered that well enough to be able to read at the same time - I can barely manage to cope with having the tv on while I'm knitting! I've also been working my head off and any spare time I've had has been spent wrangling the kids, sorting meals, trying to keep the washing pile contained in the laundry and of course digging up bricks, pulling out plants and ripping down rock walls. And reading in bed proved pointless - I was so exhausted by the time I fell into bed each night that I kept falling asleep with my book in my hand and clunking myself if the head.
Despite that I have snuck in the odd bit of reading but each book has taken far longer to get through than normal. I finally read a book that I picked up at a second-hand store ages ago. I also hit Chantalle's suggestion, The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo, which I really enjoyed so I followed it up with the rest of the Millennium Trilogy. And I've just borrowed Lunch in Paris from a friend and can't wait to get into that. Thank goodness we've hit school holidays and, while I'll still be working a couple of days each week, things will slow down a wee bit. Which means I'll be finding some time to hit the couch with a book.
On a semi-related note, our state newspaper published a list of the top 100 books as voted by its readers this week. I've read about 40 of the 100 which I thought wasn't a bad effort but I was a bit annoyed that the first three on the list are each a series of books. The Twilight Saga, all the Harry Potter's and the Millennium Trilogy all count as one book each whereas, by my reckoning, there are 14 books in that lot. Here's the whole list, with what I've read hightlighted in blue. How many have you read?

Top 100 List
1 The Twilight Saga, Stephenie Meyer
2 Harry Potter 1-7, J.K. Rowling
3 The Millennium Trilogy,Stieg Larsson
4 To Kill a Mockingbird, Harper Lee
5 The Lovely Bones, Alice Sebold
6 Pride and Prejudice, Jane Austen
7 My Sister's Keeper, Jodi Picoult
8 Sookie Stackhouse, Charlaine Harris
9 The Time Traveler's Wife, Audrey Niffenegger
10 The Book Thief, Markus Zusak

11 Lunch in Paris, Elizabeth Bard
12 The Kite Runner, Khaled Hosseini
13 Memoirs of a Geisha, Arthur Golden

14 61 Hours, Lee Child
15 Dragon Haven, Robin Hobb
16 Vampire Academy, Richelle Mead
17 The Silent Sea, Clive Cussler
18 Mao's Last Dancer, Li Cunxin
19 The Lord of the Rings, J.R.R. Tolkien
20 Tuscan Rose, Belinda Alexandra
21 The Power of One, Bryce Courtenay
22 The Notebook, Nicholas Sparks
23 The Pacific, Hugh Ambrose
24 Ransom, David Malouf
25 Jane Eyre, Charlotte Bronte
26 Dear John, Nicholas Sparks
27 Magician, Raymond E. Feist
28 The Catcher in the Rye, J.D. Salinger
29 House Rules, Jodi Picoult
30 Wuthering Heights, Emily Bronte
31 A Thousand Splendid Suns, Khaled Hosseini
32 Marley & Me, John Grogan
33 Pride and Prejudice and Zombies: Dawn of the Dreadfuls, Jane Austen & Steve
34 Breath, Tim Winton
35 The Bronze Horseman, Paullina Simons
36 Cloudstreet, Tim Winton
37 The People's Train, Thomas Keneally
38 Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, Lewis Carroll
39 Truth, Peter Temple
40 Little Women, Louisa May Alcott
41 Eat, Pray, Love, Elizabeth Gilbert
42 The Host, Stephenie Meyer
43 The Da Vinci Code, Dan Brown

44 The Book of Emmett, Deborah Forster
45 Ice Station, Matthew Reilly
46 The Road, Cormac Macarthy
47 The Memory Keeper's Daughter, Kim Edwards
48 Persuasion, Jane Austen
49 Jessica, Bryce Courtenay
50 Atonement,Ian McEwan
51 Tuesdays with Morrie, Mitch Albom
52 The Pillars of the Earth, Ken Follet
53 The Alchemist, Paulo Coehlo
54 April Fool's Day, Bryce Courtenay
55 Life of Pi, Yann Martel
56 Angels & Demons, Dan Brown
57 The Pact, Jodi Picoult
58 The Five People You Meet in Heaven, Mitch Albom

59 Parrot and Olivier in America, Peter Carey
60 Always Looking Up, Michael J. Fox
61 Seven Ancient Wonders, Matthew Reilly
62 The Hobbit, J.R.R. Tolkien
63 Nineteen Minutes, Jodi Picoult
64 The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society, Mary Ann Shaffer & Annie Burrows
65 The Lost Symbol, Dan Brown
66 Solar, Ian McEwan
67 Fallen, Lauren Kate
68 The Historian, Elizabeth Kostova
69 P.S. I Love You, Cecila Ahern
70 The Chronicles of Narnia, C.S. Lewis

71 Obernewtyn, Isobelle Carmody
72 A Fortunate Life, A.B. Facey
73 Handle with Care, Jodi Picoult
74 Cross Stitch, Diana Gabaldon
75 Dirt Music, Tim Winton
76 It, Stephen King
77 Hourglass, Claudia Gray
78 Tully, Paullina Simons
79 The Mists of Avalon, Marion Zimmer Bradley
80 Shantaram: A Novel, Gregory David Roberts
81 The Princess Bride, William Goldman
82 Nineteen Eighty-Four, George Orwell
83 Requiem for a Species, Clive Hamilton
84 The Other Boleyn Girl, Philippa Gregory
85 Break No Bones, Kathy Reichs
86 Animal Farm, George Orwell
87 The Six Sacred Stones, Matthew Reilly
88 The Five Greatest Warriors, Matthew Reilly
89 Maralinga, Judy Nunn
90 Fight Club, Chuck Palahniuk
91 One for the Money, Janet Evanovich
92 Worst Case, James Patterson
93 Once in a Lifetime, Cathy Kelly
94 The Stand, Stephen King
95 Anybody Out There, Marian Keyes
96 The Secret, Rhonda Byrne
97 Temple, Matthew Reilly
98 All That Remains, Patricia Cornwall
99 The Slap, Christos Tsolkias
100 Interview with the Vampire, Anne Rice
PS: Don't forget to enter my giveaway. It's open till Thursday and you just have to leave a comment over at that post.

45 comments:

JustJen said...

Wow, sometimes we are so similar it's a bit scary! I too have been struggling lately to fit in my reading time. I'm in two bookgroups at the moment so I have deadlines to meet! My hubby thought it was pretty funny the other night when I fell asleep with the book on my face. I compared your list with mine, there were only 11 that I've read that you haven't, but there were 17 that you've read that I havn't so I guess that puts you in front (not that I'm trying to be competitive about it). Of those that I've read that you haven't I would recommend: Princess Bride (also one of my favourite movies of all time) and A Thousand Splendid Suns. I thought this was an amazing book, but very, very traumatic to read, I've never cried so much with a book! Happy reading in the holidays!

Chantalle said...

32/100 for me! Did try Twilight, but just couldn't handle the dreadful writing - I just wanted to get the red pen out!! Same with Dan Brown I'm afraid.
You MUST MUST MUST read The Princess Bride, Life of Pi, & Fight Club. And really, Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit are painfully slow in places, but you just have to!! I can't agree with Jen though - I found A Thousand Splendid Suns a real let down after the Kite Runner. I'd be interested to see what you think.
I am inspired to fill in a few gaps, just a soon as I finish the big pile of school holiday books waiting by my bed. Yikes!

Sarah said...

Only 7 for me, which is pretty poor. But I've read some of the Twilight books and Chronicles of Narnia, and I'm part way through Maralinga by Judy Nunn. I have The Lovely Bones and Tuscan Rose next to my bed ready to read.

I agree about reading every day. I didn't use to until I purposely started setting aside time to read every day (just before I go to bed).

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