As you know, I've recently joined Shoutlife and finally set up my MySpace page. Then yesterday I got an invite to join a group called Shelfari. It's an online social group for book lovers.
OK, of all of the possible groups to join, that one makes the most sense to me, because I am a total bibliophiole. The problem, of course, is that one can only belong to so many online groups before one becomes socially dysfunctional in real life.
I'm not a super social person to begin with, which will surprise most people that know me. That's because I'm in social situations so infrequently that by then I've built up quite a bit of social energy that I need to expend. I can talk and socialize for an hour or so, like the Energizer bunny, and then I need to go and recharge. Alone.
In any event, the Shelfari thing got me thinking about how many books I've read this year. A few years ago, I set a goal to read 6 books in a year. I read more than 40 that year, and I was totally astounded, because to be honest, I didn't realize how many books I actually do read in a year. Ever since, I've kept a list.
Usually, my list is heavily laden with classics, but this year I made an attempt to read some pop fiction as well. I'm always hesitant to buy a book of the shelf because it might be well written but too erotic, or it might just be a stinker. And then there are the review books I'm glad I didn't spend money on.
So far in 2007, I've read 39 books, many for the second or third (or sixth or seventh time, as is the case with Winter of Our Discontent). There were some really good books that I'd recommend reading, including anything by John Steinbeck, CS Lewis, Bill Bryson, Amy Tan, Donald Miller, or Erik Larson; Experiencing God; The Book of Bright Ideas; The True Confessions of Charlotte Doyle. I was surprised by Forget About It; the summary made it seem a bit too MTV for me, but it was really funny and a clever plot.
Anyway, here's the list so far in the order I finished them, with the most recent book I finished at the top:
Left to Tell, by Immaculee Ilibagiza
The Summons, by John Grisham
Bleachers, by John Grisham
Iron Thunder, by Avi
The True Confessions of Charlotte Doyle, by Avi
I'm A Stranger Here Myself, by Bill Bryson
Extra Virgin, by Annie Hawes
Me and Mr Darcy, by Alexandra Potter
Forget About It, by Carice Crane
Into The Wild, by Jon Krakauer
Cold Sassy Tree, by Olive Ann Burns
Happiness Sold Separately, by Lottie Winston
Travels with Charley, by John Steinbeck
Namesake, by Jhumpa Lahiri
Wicked, by Gregory McGuire
Katz on Dogs, by Jon Katz
The Great Divorce, by CS Lewis
Experiencing God, by Henry Blackaby and Claude King
The Winter of Our Discontent, by John Steinbeck
The Little Lady Agency, by Hester Browne
Doesn't She Look Natural, by Angela Hunt
The Book of Bright Ideas, by Sandra Kring
The Memory Keeper's Daughter, by Kim Edwards
Saving Fish From Drowning, by Amy Tan
The Traitor's Gate, by Avi
The Razor's Edge, by Somerset Maugham
Under The Banner of Heaven, by Jon Krakauer
The Remains of The Day, by Kazuo Ishiguro
Under The Overpass, by Mike Yankoski
Tribulation House, by Chris Well
Roaring Lambs, by Bob Briner
Searching for God Knows What, by Donald Miller
Larkspur Dreams, by Anita Higman and Janice Thompson
Me, Myself and Bob, by Phil Vischer
It Happened One Spring, by Gary Chapman and Catherine Palmer
The Dogs of Bedlam Farm, by Jon Katz
A Dog Year, by Jon Katz
Thunderstruck, by Erik Larson
JesusLand, by Julia Schoens
Velvet Elvis, by Rob Bell