Tags: books

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Bathing with Books

My brand-new, autographed copy of Shannon Butcher's No Control --the one I brought back with me from Polaris-- hopped in the shower with me. I guess it got lonely sitting on the shelf over there by itself, and wondered if it could make the leap through the shower curtain into the bathtub. The answer is yes, it can.

Fortunately, only the top edge got wet (albeit very wet), and it's still readable. I'm just annoyed because it's new and it's a signed copy. Likely the book knew this would annoy me and is now snickering.
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The Big Read

Alright, fine, aurillia. You have me playing your dirty game. I'm filling out your book meme. Are you happy now?

The Big Read reckons that the average adult has only read 6 of the top 100 books they've printed.

1) Look at the list and bold those you have read.
2) Italicize those you intend to read. (Almost all of these are books I own)
3) Underline the books you LOVE.
4) Reprint this list in your own LJ so we can try and track down these people who've read 6 and force books upon them ;-)

(I'm putting a * by books I never finished.)

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Against the Grain

I'm always a little wary about reading and reviewing something really popular. I read Neil Gaiman's American Gods a little while ago, and despite really wanting to like it, my reaction to the book was a resounding "meh." However, the book was written by NEIL FREAKING GAIMAN who has been elevated from major author to rock star status, with the rabid fanbase to match. So I posted my thoughts about the book he'd written, fully expecting to be slammed for my opinion.

When you write a review about something that ridiculously popular, people who would otherwise never have looked at what you have to say will come check it out. Brand familiarity, I guess. By the next day, I had a ton of responses to my review (yes, I know, a ton is a weight measurement. These were heavy comments), and I was pleasantly surprised that not a single person told me I was an idiot. People disagreed with me, but they were polite about it, and most of the American Gods fans said something to the effect of "oh, that's too bad." Needless to say, I had to ask them to turn down the hostility.

What was more surprising was that the vast majority of commenters agreed with me. I'm not fooling myself in thinking that mine is the most popular opinion out there, but after all the rave reviews I'd read, it was nice to know that my dissenting voice wasn't entirely alone. I expect the agreeing voices were the most common comments I got because they were relieved to find they weren't the only ones underwhelmed by all the hype surrounding the book, which was pretty much the same thing I felt reading their responses. So we all patted each other on the back and validated each others' opinions and it was a lovely thing.

(For the record, I think Neil Gaiman is brilliant, funny, and charming. I love the concepts behind his books. His method of narration just doesn't draw me in, though, and I'm always left aware that I'm sitting there reading a book. I thoroughly enjoy his blog, though.)

So the moral of the story is... uh, I don't actually know. I don't think I really have a point. The whole thing came to mind mostly because I just finished with Stephenie Meyer's Twilight, the fanbase of which rivals Potterdom for insane loyalty. People seem to either really love or really hate the book, and I apparently lost my head and thought "oooh, there aren't enough opinions about that book floating around already!" The response so far has been similar to my Gaiman review. A few people politely disagree, but the majority think my points are bang on.

Strangely, I didn't have a single person disagree with my critique of the romance novel Fabio wrote. I can't imagine why.
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dark woods

Adventures in Twilight

No, that's not twilight as in dusk, it's Twilight as in the ridiculously popular YA novel.

Lately, I've been bombarded with talk about the novel from a billion different sources. People raving about the wonders of the book, people ranting about how terrible it is, people theorizing on why it's become so insanely popular. It's come from enough sources that I've come to the conclusion that I have to read this thing, if for no other reason than for me to know what I'm talking about next time the subject comes up. (Now watch, by the time I make it through the book, the whole thing will be "so over" and I'll be behind the times again. Go me!)

Sarah also has decided she's got to read Twilight for similar reasons (and also because she pretty much gloms anything with fangs). Since we'd both decided to read it, we thought "hey, we'll read it together and compare opinions, and stick up a double review." (Cuz, in case I haven't pimped it out enough, we put up book reviews on genrereviews...) Sarah already had her copy, so I thought I'll just pick one up at the library, since I had to go return some books anyway, and we'd be all set.

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