I must be thinking about The Wizard of Oz which I watched with my daughter for the first time (hers, not mine) last week. It was a bit nightmare inducing.
I am not usually a Saturday poster, but this is the first time I've been alone in days and days. I love my family, but I'm a true introvert so it's nice to be able to finish my own thoughts in my head for a few moments uninterrupted.
I began 2008 with a couple of goals. I must be afraid of failure, since I never mentioned the main one and only do so now since I have accomplished it. I've only kept track of what I've read since 2003 and each year I've finished more books, but the past couple of years I seemed to hit a plateau and was not able to break 80. So, my goal this year, which was also a goal of 2007 which I did not accomplish, was to read 80 books. One of the books was quite short, more of an article, so I felt I must read 81 to keep myself honest. And I have done it! I have finished 83 books, and I may get to 85. I know many of you read much more than this, but I am really thrilled. The other goal involves this list that I wrote late last year. Funny, it looks just the same outside now! I didn't do quite as well with accomplishing this goal. For the fiction list I've read Cranford, A Fine Balance, Shirley Jackson, and I am reading Elizabeth Taylor now. From the nonfiction list I read Fast Food Nation, and part of Maximum City but put it aside. It was really heavy on modern day India's crime and mafia and I just lost interest.
Christmas. All my lovely books have arrived but sadly our camera was left in Iowa so I will share those when it arrives. One bookish and sad thing that happened on Christmas had to do with my niece. She is 15, not really sure what she's interested in, her only idea for earning money is to marry a rich husband and she hates books. HATES THEM. She was so vehement about this, I wonder if it's just to be contrary, 'you all want me to like books but I won't, so there.' It's really quite sad. I looked through her books in her room and she had some good ones. I suggested Twilight -too long. It's not even that maybe I could buy her some books that she'd like, it's that she wouldn't even bother to try them. I even asked her if I read to her if she'd listen, and she said yes. So maybe it's worth it to read to your teenagers - I don't know. I can understand that the books she is required to read in school are boring and uninteresting to her. I just wish she'd read something, comics, magazines, trashy fiction, whatever. Sigh.
This post is sort of wordy already, but I ought to try to review something before I am interrupted!
Many, many thanks are due to Cath for writing this review of Susan Hill's The Various Haunts of Men. Something about it peaked my interest and I bought it almost immediately. The cover says that it is 'A Simon Serrailler Mystery' which I found a little odd since he seems like a secondary character in this book. The Various Haunts of Men is much more novel than it is a mystery, and that I don't mind at all. The story takes place in the small British town of Lafferton. We get to know various residents of Lafferton, about their history and their lives, and oh! someone has disappeared! and we learn more about Lafferton and oh! someone else has disappeared! Perhaps these disappearances are related. Perhaps we should investigate. If you're looking for a page-turning who-done-it complete with gore this isn't it. If you like a character driven novel in which a murder mystery happens to be taking place - this may be the book for you. I have to say that I really, really liked this. I loved Hill's writing, I loved the small town, and what made this book stand out in my mind is that the people I was getting to know - they were the ones who disappeared. Often it seems someone has been murdered (in murder mystery books) and since we don't 'know' them we don't feel affected by it. In this sort of book, we feel the loss of the characters. I did figure out the perpetrator in this book fairly early on, but that didn't diminish my enjoyment of the book. I'd be interested to know if anyone else has read any from this series. As for me, I've already ordered the second one.