Monday, December 24, 2007

1001 Books Challenge - 2008

So my goal for the 1001 Books challenge is to try and read two titles per month. And in an attempt to not ensure my RRHB goes completely mad with the stacks of books consistently piling up on our shelves, I'm going to try and read the titles that I've already got in-house. So here's my list for the year:

1. War and Peace by Tolstoy
Having been assigned by my creative writing teacher in a manner of speaking, the claim that it's the most "romantic" book ever written is at stake. At 1448 pages, it'll be almost impossible to get through. Good thing I've got 11 days off starting today.

2. Invisble Man by Ralph Ellison
I should have read this novel during my undergraduate American fiction class, but I never got around to it. I've had the novel on various bookshelves over the years and I think it's about time I actually read the damn book.

3. The Good Soldier by Ford Madox Ford
Having read the first sentence about a dozen times over the past three years, I have to say it's still one of the best I've ever read. That doesn't mean I've actually found my way to the end of the book.

4. Blonde by Joyce Carol Oates
Something fun for the upcoming year.

5. Schooling by Heather McGowan
See #4.

6. The Sea by John Banville
Another book I've had on my TBR pile for quite some time.

7. Drop City by T. Coraghessan Boyle
I picked up a copy of this at a used book store in Stratford, and although I'd never heard of T. Coraghessan Boyle before the 1001 Books list, the fact that part of the novel is set on a commune has me utterly intrigued. Who doesn't love a good commune story?

8. Islands by Dan Sleigh
Ever since I heard our family story that my great-great grandfather went off to the Boer War and never returned, I've been curious about South Africa. It's on my list of countries where I would spend two months if I got the chance to tour the world, if only to find out if the story is true, and this epic novel seems a good place to start.

9. July's People by Nadine Gordimer
Speaking of South Africa, another novel that's been on my TBR pile for years, I've already half-finished it twice. This is the year to get to the last page.

10. Under the Volcano by Malcolm Lowry
Recommended by Kath as one of the greatest novels of all time (at least I think that's what she said), I brought a lovely copy home from work, and it's going on the list.

11. Master and Margarita by Mikhail Bulgakov
Another "as recommended by" -- it's a friend's favourite novel.

12. Sense and Sensibility by Jane Austen
Continuing my love affair with Austen, I am so happy that I've still got novels of hers to read.

13. Middlemarch by George Eliot
Another giant classic. Enough said.

14. Austerlitz by W. G. Sebald
I have a copy. It's on a shelf. That's pretty much why it's on the list.

15. Philip Roth: The Plot Against America or American Pastoral
Both are on my 1001 Books shelf, so I'm not sure which one I'll choose, but I'm happy to try and read either one.

16. Ulysses by James Joyce
We'll see if I actually get through this one. We'll see.

17. The Talented Mr. Ripley by Patricia Highsmith
I recently re-watched the movie version (it was on TMN and I wasn't feeling well) and was surprised at how much I actually enjoyed it. I'm sure the book will be even better.

18. Sometimes a Great Notion by Ken Kesey
This book goes in the same category as The Good Soldier. I've stopped and started a dozen times since first picking it up in high school.

19. The Secret History by Donna Tartt
Emma at work recommends this one. Hence, it's on the list.

20. The Quiet American by Graham Greene
This is for my 1001 Books club.

21. The Age of Innocence by Edith Wharton
Who doesn't love a good Wharton (it took my fancy; see below)

22. Hunger by Knut Hamsun
The fancy struck me.

23. Brideshead Revisited by Evelyn Waugh
Again, the fancy struck me.

24. A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens
Because it was just that time of year.

25. Choke by Chuck Palahniuk
Because there's a movie.

And that leaves a few more titles to be determined over the next few months if something simply takes my fancy.

The running tally: 161

1 comment:

Sycorax Pine said...

I have had the same goal of 2 books from the "1001 Books" list a month for the past year or so! It seemed like a good (and reasonable number) for the project of finishing the whole list in the next several decades. :) I am afraid I am not very strict with myself about it, though - this year I have only read 2 so far.

My Boy is Ten

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