Wednesday, December 31, 2014

This Looks Like Fun!

I plan on applying other challenges to this list for next year, to see the full list go here.

Chunkster Reading Challenge for 2015!

Buttons!!I will be participating in the Chunkster Reading Challenge for 2015 (books must be more than 450 pages), and I read one book for this challenge last year. This upcoming year I hope to be able to read more and plan on using some of the books from my other challenges to apply to this one. I don't have a list of books, but once I have finished a book that applies to this challenge I will review it on my blog. To see all of the rules click here.

Monday, December 29, 2014

Classic Club Survey - Part V

 Here are the last answers to the classic club survey.

42. Classic you are NOT GOING TO MAKE HAPPEN next year?

I probably won't be able to finish a either Heart of Darkness nor want to start reading Lord Jim (assuming Joseph Conrad's writing style is the same for both books).

43. Favorite thing about being a member of the Classics Club?

I love reading the reviews, classic spins, read challenges, and other events

44. List Five fellow clubbers whose blogs you frequent. What makes you love their blogs?

There are a few that I read off and on. Mostly I either am interested in the books they read and what to see their reviews, or I also enjoy the reading challenges they host. These are not in any particular order.

Adam - Roof Beam Reader

Brona - Brona's Book

Sam - Tiny Library

Fanda - Fanda

Marianne - Common Placing Books

45. Favorite post you’ve read by a fellow clubber?

I haven't kept track but perhaps I should.

46. If you’ve ever participated in a readalong on a classic, tell about the experience? If you’ve participated in more than one, what’s the very best experience? the best title you’ve completed? a fond memory? a good friend made?

I really liked doing a read along for To Kill A Mockingbird, it was really interesting and quite a bit of fun. Although this book isn't on my classic club list. I also enjoy readalongs or readathons where everyone picks their own pick or has the same theme, this way you can see all of the different books other people are reading. You never know when you might find a new author or another good book to read.

47. If you could appeal for a readalong with others for any classic title, which title would you name? Why?

Well I can think of a few, but if I ever hosted one it would have simple rules such as you have a year to finish it (no matter what the length), have a monthly check in, and review of the book once they have finished. This way to get more people involved who met want to participate but couldn't due to time contstraints (there have been times where I wanted to participate in a readalong but couldn't because the dates didn't work for me or they were only given a month to read a big book. Anyways, my picks would be Grapes of Wrath, War and Peace and Ivanhoe. I like cultural and historical type books (not textbook though), and with Grapes of Wrath I think you can compare somethings from the time frame to know so it would just be to get people thinking more. Maybe I should do one, would anyone be interested in joining if I made a readalong for any of those books for next year?

48. How long have you been reading classic literature?

Not counting when I was a kid, as I only read a few, then I would say almost three years.

49. Share up to five posts you’ve written that tell a bit about your reading story. Reviews, journal entries, posts on novels you loved or didn’t love, lists, etc.
Why I Read The Classics
Emma Review
Pride and Prejudice Review
Oliver Twist Review
Ivanhoe Review

50. Question you wish was on this questionnaire? (Ask and answer it!)

If you have a book that is not a keeper, than what do you do with it? I give mine to friends who I think will enjoy it, donate to local library, used bookstore, non-profit organization or church library. I always hope that even if a book might not be my cup of tea, that someone else will enjoy it.

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Classic Club Survey - Part IV

Here is part four of my answers for the Classic Club Survey.

Favorite memory with a classic? 
I don't really have one, but I guess with all books the first time reading a book and meeting the characters and the word they live in.

32. Classic author you’ve read the most works by? 
I think this is a tie between Laura Ingalls Wilder and L.M. Montgomery.

33. Classic author who has the most works on your club list? 
C.S. Lewis

34. Classic author you own the most books by?
Anthony Trollope

35. Classic title(s) that didn’t make it to your club list that you wish you’d included? (Or, since many people edit their lists as they go, which titles have you added since initially posting your club list?)
I haven't added any new books or changed my original list. I would keep my list the way it is otherwise I might never challenge myself on this task of reading all 67 of them.

36. If you could explore one author’s literary career from first publication to last — meaning you have never read this author and want to explore him or her by reading what s/he wrote in order of publication — who would you explore? Obviously this should be an author you haven’t yet read, since you can’t do this experiment on an author you’re already familiar with. :) Or, which author’s work you are familiar with might it have been fun to approach this way? 
This depends on if the author wrote like a series of books compared to just regular books that didn't have anything to do with each other. I would rather read Sir Walter Scott or Zola in order of publication. If there is a new author and I know their book is part of a series I usually always start from the first book. 

37. How many rereads are on your club list? If none, why? If some, which are you most looking forward to, or did you most enjoy?
I really tried to limit myself on this and have only three. Out of the Grapes of Wrath, The Outsiders, and Treasure Island I am looking most forward to the last book. I vaguely remember Treasure Island but remember I liked it as a kid and it had a lot of adventure, so it will basically be like reading it for the first time. I have the Outsiders basically memorized and read the Grapes of Wrath within the past five years so I remember quite a bit of that as well. 

38. Has there been a classic title you simply could not finish?
I have tried three times and after one more attempt I am going to give up on Heart of Darkness. Also Great Expectations, although this wasn't on my classic club list.

39. Has there been a classic title you expected to dislike and ended up loving? 
Jane Eyre, not completely done but more than halfway.

40.Five things you’re looking forward to next year in classic literature? 

Read more books on my list, participate more and finish reading Spin List books, challenge myself to War and Peace, pick at least four books on my list that I am somewhat dreading and read them (if I end up not liking them than at least they are out of the way), complete reading challenges I have signed up for next year.

41. Classic you are DEFINITELY GOING TO MAKE HAPPEN next year?

War and Peace

Saturday, December 27, 2014

Classic Club Survey - Part III

 I have previously answered 20 questions but forth by the Classics club in previous posts. Here are my answers to the next ten questions:

21. Which title by one of the five you’ve listed above most excites you and why? 
This was a close one but I would have to say The Memoirs of Gluckel Hameln, just because of the history aspect and insight into someones daily life in the 1690's.

22. Have you read a classic you disliked on first read that you tried again and respected, appreciated, or even ended up loving? (This could be with the club or before it.) 

Nope, but I have read a few books which I thought I would absolutely not like and ended up liking it.

23.Which classic character can’t you get out of your head? 

Off the top of my head I can think of several: Emma Woodhouse, Laura Ingalls Wilder, Mr. Darcy, Anne Shirley, Hermoine Granger, Harry Potter, Ponyboy Curtis, and Scout.

24. Which classic character most reminds you of yourself? 
Probably a mix between Laura Ingalls Wilder, Hermione Granger, and Anne Shirley.

25.Which classic character do you most wish you could be like? 
I have never really thought of that and can't immediately think of an answer right now.

26.Which classic character reminds you of your best friend?
 I have not a clue

27.If a sudden announcement was made that 500 more pages had been discovered after the original “THE END” on a classic title you read and loved, which title would you most want to keep reading? Or, would you avoid the augmented manuscript in favor of the original? Why? 

There are so many books that I would have wanted to keep reading after "the end." I guess it depends on what is in the extra 500 pages, does it have more background information and ties of questions never answered or give more insight into a character and their thoughts? Or if the book was more of a mystery at the end as to what really happened, does it answer those questions? If the extra pages didn't answer any of these to add anything extra I don't think I would want to read it then.

 28. Favorite children’s classic? 
How can you only pick one? I think book wise it would be Laura Ingalls Wilder as I enjoyed the Anne of Green Gables miniseries better than the books.

29. Who recommended your first classic? 
I can't really remember but assume it would have been my sister or an elementary teacher.

30. Whose advice do you always take when it comes to literature. (Recommends the right editions, suggests great titles, etc.) 
No one really, some people might suggest a book and I look into it, to see if I think I would like it or not. I have had it were sometimes then I enjoyed the book and other times I didn't.

Friday, December 26, 2014

Classic Club Survey - Part II

 Yesterday I posted my answers to the first 10 questions of the classic club survey. So here are my answers for the next 10 questions:

11. Classic that inspired you? or scared you? made you cry? made you angry? 
hmm... The Outsiders, Oliver Twist, Ivanhoe, and Grapes of Wrath.

12. Longest classic you’ve read? Longest classic left on your club list? 
 The longest book I have read so far for the Classic Club I think is Ivanhoe with more than 500 pages. I assume the longest book left on my list would be War and Peace with approximately 1200-1300 pages.

13. Oldest classic you’ve read? Oldest classic left on your club list?
So far the oldest book that I have completed has been Pride and Prejudice, but the oldest on my list is The Republic written in 380 BC.

14. Favorite biography about a classic author you’ve read — or, the biography on a classic author you most want to read, if any? None

15. Which classic do you think EVERYONE should read? Why? 
See my answers to question 11. Sometimes I like books that make you think or give you a broader view of various issues on things, course that means you don't have to agree with what an author wrote but just think more about your own opinion and see what others think.

16. Favorite edition of a classic you own, if any?  
I have some nice hardback issues of War and Peace, Pride and Prejudice, The Chronicles of Narnia, and Northanger Abbey.

17. Favorite movie adaption of a classic? 
The extended version of the Outsiders, Emma with Romola Garai and Jonny Lee Miller (plays on US version of Elementary), and Pride and Prejudice with Colin Firth.

18. Classic which hasn’t been adapted yet (that you know of) which you very much wish would be adapted to film. I can't think of one at the moment.

19. Least favorite classic? Why? Heart of Darkness, see part I for my answer as to why

20. Name five authors you haven’t read yet whom you cannot wait to read
Thomas Hardy, Gluckel of Hameln, Thomas Paine, Louisa May Alcott, James Fenimore Cooper

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Classic Club Survey - Part I

 Here are the first ten answers to the Classic Club Survey, I am doing this in five parts.

  1. Share a link to your club list:
  2. When did you join The Classics Club? How many titles have you read for the club?  Aug. 2012,  finished eight, and currently reading three. I know slow going lately.:)
  3. What are you currently reading? The Age of Innocence, Sense and Sensibility, Jane Eyre.
  4. What did you just finish reading and what did you think of it? The last book I finished wasn't on the classic club list, but the last official club book I finished was Emma and I loved it.
  5. What are you reading next? Why? After finishing the three books I am currently reading, I will probably go back and finish Germinal (I am only a few chapters in).
  6. Best book you’ve read so far with the club, and why? Emma, Oliver Twist,  and Ivanhoe. See my reviews.
  7. Book you most anticipate (or, anticipated) on your club list? There are so many left on my list, so this answer will have quite a list (which include rereads and will not count ones I have already read for the club). The Outsiders, North and South, Wives and Daughters, Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, Treasure Island, Kidnapped, Little Women, The Memoirs of Gluckel of Hameln, War and Peace, Little Dorritt, Larkrise to Candleford, and The Adventures of Tom Sawyer.
  8. Book on your club list you’ve been avoiding, if any? Why? Actually not a book but a particular author Joseph Conrad. I have been trying to read Heart of Darkness and other short stories but cannot get into it. I have tried multiple times, so I will try one more time, the style of writing is really hard to get into and follow. I also have Lord Jim on my list as well.
  9. First classic you ever read? I think it would be Little House on the Prairie series as a kid, but for the classic club it was Pat of Silverbush by LM Montgomery.
  10. Toughest classic you ever read. So far, which I haven't finished either is Heart of Darkness and War and Peace. As previously stated I can't get into and do not care for the style of writing for Heart of Darkness, in regards to War and Peace it is because of the multiple names for the same person it gets really confusing. I am going to give Heart of Darkness one more time, and in regards to War and Peace I am going to make a cheat sheet of the names as other than that I liked the story of War and Peace (of course I wasn't even a quarter the way through).

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Classics Club Check In - Dec. 2014

 I haven't finished a book on my classics club list in quite awhile, however I have been reading several of them. I am more than halfway on Jane Eyre, halfway through Sense and Sensibility, and not even a quarter of the way through The Age of Innocence (which I am having a hard time getting into). I think I will be starting over on Persuasion as I was almost halfway, but I haven't read it in awhile, so I have forgotten most of the characters. How is your reading going?

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Monday, December 22, 2014

It's Monday, What Are You Reading? 12/22/14

I haven't posted for a week or two, but since my last post I completed the Conrete Blonde by Michael Connelly, and my semi-review is here. Today I will be reading a variety of books, just depending on what book I am in the mood for, The Age of Innocence by Edith Wharton, The Red and Black by Stendhal, or Demons by Dostoyevsky. I have only started reading The Age of Innocence and around 30 pages or so, it is slow going and just meh right now. So what are you reading today?

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Sunday, December 21, 2014

English Paper Piecing

A few years ago I started doing English Paper Piecing and quickly became addictive, I am sure like most people. Unfortunately, I had to put most crafts aside for quite awhile, but lately have slowly been getting back to them. I have picked up my english paper piecing again, and am making a very scrappy table runner/quilt (I haven't made up my mind yet which one). This project uses 3/4" hexagons. As a Christmas gift I ended up giving a friend her own starter English Paper Piecing kit and showed her how easy it was. I think she enjoyed it.

I loved this English Paper Piecing (EPP) quilt that I found on Paper Pieces. Isn't it just beautiful!?!

Robin's Nest Complete Piece Pack
EPP Quilt from Paper Pieces

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Holiday Snacks

Normally I do not ever make holiday candy/snacks, but was in the mood this year to do a little bit. It wasn't hard by any means. I ended up making mint chocolate and vanilla chocolate covered pretzels. I have found memories as a child in eating and helping make holiday candy/snacks such as chocolate covered pretzels, pies, dessert breads, homemade peanut butter fudge, etc. Here are a few pictures I took, enjoy!

The vanilla chocolate slowly melting

Friday, December 19, 2014

Bout of Books Read A Thon 12 Sign Up Post

Bout of Books

So I am joining the Bout of Books Readathon again, which I didn't due to well last time, so I hope to get more progress done this time. The event is Jan 5th through the eleventh. I am not quite sure what books I will be reading, perhaps one of these The Charterhouse of Parma or Le Morte D'Arthur or even other books. Below is more information about the event:

The Bout of Books read-a-thon is organized by Amanda @ On a Book Bender and Kelly @ Reading the Paranormal. It is a week long read-a-thon that begins 12:01am Monday, January 5th and runs through Sunday, January 11th in whatever time zone you are in. Bout of Books is low-pressure, and the only reading competition is between you and your usual number of books read in a week. There are challenges, giveaways, and a grand prize, but all of these are completely optional. For all Bout of Books 12 information and updates, be sure to visit the Bout of Books blog. - From the Bout of Books team

Sunday, December 14, 2014

2015 Literary Movement Reading Challenge - Sign Up Post

For this challenge I will be reading 12 books from the following themes for each month:

January        Medieval
                                   February      Renaissance
                                   March           Enlightenment
                                   April             Romanticism
                                   May              Transcendentalism
                                   June             Victorian
                                   July              Realism
                                   August         Naturalism
                                   September   Existentialism
                                   October        Modernism
                                   November    The Beat Generation or The Bloomsbury Group
                                   December    : Post-Modernism

If you would like to see the rules click here.

Jan. – Le Morte DArthur by Thomas Malory

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Feb. – The Book of the Courtier by Baldesio Castiglione

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March – Robinson Crusoe by Daniel Defoe

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Apr.  The Bostonian by Henry James
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May – Little Women by Louisa May Alcott

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June- Silas Marner by George Eliot

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July – The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain

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Aug – House of Mirth by Edith Wharton

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Sep. -  The Idiot by Dostoyevsky
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Oct – Sons and Lovers by DH Lawrence

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Nov. – To the Lighthouse by Virginia Woolf
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Dec. -  A Mercy by Toni Morrison

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2015 Series Enders Reading Challenge

 I am sure like any avid book reader, most people have a couple of books at the end of a series they need to finish. If so, join me in this reading challenge I found. I think this will be a fun way to see what other people are reading and also to challenge us to finally finish. To see all of the rules click here, now this is my list that I hope to complete next year. I will be doing level 1 since I only have four books on my list:

  • The End (A Series of Unfortunate Events #13) by Lemony Snicket

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  • The Keys to the Kingdom #7: Lord Sunday by Garth Nix
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  • Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by JK Rowling
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  • Among The Free (Shadow Children) by Margaret Peterson Haddix
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Saturday, December 13, 2014

2015 Birthday Month Reading Challenge - Main Post

 I have been seeing quite a few reading challenges and thought this one sounded interesting. Basically you will choose to read 12 books based on the month that the author was born. So, if I wanted to read a book by Jane Austen I would read it in the month of December, as she was born on December 16th, etc. To find out more information and to sign up click here. Here is my list which consists of some books that are part of other reading challenges.

Jan. - Marie-Henri Beyle AKA Stendhal - The Charterhouse of Parma

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Feb. - Charles Dickens - Barnaby Rudge

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March - James Patterson - Gone

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Apr. - Emile Zola - Germinal

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May -  Ian Fleming - Casino Royale

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June - Thomas Hardy - Far from the Maddening Crowd

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July - JK Rowling - Harry Potter and The Deathly Hallows

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Aug. - Sir Walter Scott - Waverley

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Sep. - Elizabeth Gaskell - Larkrise to Candleford

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Oct. - Nella Last - Nella Last's War: WWII Diaries of Housewife, 49

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Nov. - George Eliot - Felix Holt: the Radical

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Dec. - Jane Austen - Mansfield Park

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