1. Love Story - Erich Segal 2. The Imperfectionists - Tom Rachman 3. Freedom - Jonathan Franzen 4. Einstein's Dreams - Alan Lightman 5. Whose Body? - Dorothy Sayers 6. Clouds of Witness - Dorothy Sayers 7. Murder Must Advertise - Dorothy Sayers 8. Gaudy Night - Dorothy Sayers 9. The Reluctant Widow - Georgette Heyer 10. White Teeth - Zadie Smith 11. A Room with a View - E.M. Forster 12. The Wedding Girl - Madeleine Wickham 13. The Hunger Games - Suzanne Collins 14. Catching Fire - Suzanne Collins 15. Mockingjay - Suzanne Collins 16. The Demon's Surrender - Sarah Rees Brennan 17. Howards End - E.M. Forster 18. Sisterhood Everlasting - Ann Brashares 19. Hex Hall - Rachel Hawkins 20. Demonglass - Rachel Hawkins 21. In Cold Blood - Truman Capote 22. State of Wonder - Ann Patchett 23. Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim - David Sedaris 24. Troy - Adele Geras 25. A Tangled Web - L.M. Montgomery 26. Lock and Key - Sarah Dessen 27. Jacob Have I Loved - Katherine Paterson 28. Me Talk Pretty One Day - David Sedaris 29. Kilmeny of the Orchard - L.M. Montgomery 30. Wolf Hall - Hilary Mantel 31. Blue Nights - Joan Didion 32. The Secret Adversary - Agatha Christie 33. The Secret of Chimneys - Agatha Christie 34. Divergent - Veronica Roth 35. Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? - Mindy Kaling
1. Truth & Beauty: A Friendship - Ann Patchett 2. Rilla of Ingleside - L.M. Montgomery 3. Someone Like You - Sarah Dessen 4. Restless - William Boyd 5. Ex Libris: Confessions of a Common Reader - Anne Fadiman 6. Lady of Quality - Georgette Heyer 7. Arabella - Georgette Heyer 8. These Old Shades - Georgette Heyer 9. Devil's Cub - Georgette Heyer 10. Venetia - Georgette Heyer 11. Frederica - Georgette Heyer 12. Black Sheep - Georgette Heyer 13. Faro's Daughter - Georgette Heyer 14. The Changeover - Margaret Mahy 15. The Grand Sophy - Georgette Heyer 16. Cotillion- Georgette Heyer 17. Twenties Girl - Sophie Kinsella 18. Behold, Here's Poison - Georgette Heyer 19. The Nonesuch - Georgette Heyer 20. Staring at the Sun - Julian Barnes 21. The Demon's Covenant - Sarah Rees Brennan 22. The House of Mirth - Edith Wharton 23. Death in the Stocks - Georgette Heyer 24. They Found Him Dead - Georgette Heyer 25. The Convenient Marriage - Georgette Heyer 26. No Wind of Blame - Georgette Heyer 27. Nothing to be Frightened Of - Julian Barnes 28. Special Topics in Calamity Physics - Marisha Pessl 29. False Colours - Georgette Heyer 30. Duplicate Death - Georgette Heyer 31. The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie - Alan Bradley 32. Beauty - Robin McKinley 33. The Big Sleep - Raymond Chandler 34. Beauvallet - Georgette Heyer 35. The Corinthian - Georgette Heyer 36. The Masqueraders - Georgette Heyer 37. Angels and Ages - Adam Gopnik 38. Envious Casca - Georgette Heyer 39. How to Be Good - Nick Hornby 40. Charity Girl - Georgette Heyer 41. Paris to the Moon - Adam Gopnik 42. Detection Unlimited - Georgette Heyer 43. Passenger to Frankfurt - Agatha Christie 44. A Room of One's Own - Virginia Woolf 45. The Hours - Michael Cunningham
I'd never read a historical romance novel before last week; I'm not sure I even knew they existed. But then a friend lent me four Georgette Heyer novels and now I love her and her books and am left wondering where this week has gone. Has anyone read her?
Apparently she's written something close to forty novels, and I can't vouch for all of them, but I highly, highly recommend the ones I have read: Lady of Quality (great), Arabella (fantastic), These Old Shades (great), Devil's Cub (fantastic). They're mostly set in the Regency period. There is witty, charming dialogue, great settings and details, stylish writing, characters I fell in love with, and many passages that made me laugh aloud. I don't know what characters in romance novels are usually like (I've never read any) but Heyer's heorines are intelligent, capable, funny, relatable and not at all in danger of losing their heads to heroes. And the men are by turns wry, tempestuous, funny and dashing, and I would dearly love to meet two of them in real life (Robert Beaumaris and Vidal). And I love the insults that are hurled; I would very much like to go around calling people I don't like coxcombs.
One of the reviews says "I've read her books to ragged shreds" and that is exactly how I feel. I read Devil's Cub yesterday and I've already reread my favourite passages five times (and not just because I'm insane). So even though my finals start two weeks from today (four of six exams are worth one hundred percent of my grade), this week was worth it. But I am trying to exercise more willpower than I have to prevent myself from reading any more books before April 26.
Postcript: I bought my own copies of Arabella and Devil's Cub, as well as Venetia and The Grand Sophy. Venetia was very good, and I am saving The Grand Sophy for a study break over the next two weeks.
We were all sitting in the pub, trying to remember to breathe, as if we could will our team to victory, when Crosby scored and Canada won 3-2 in overtime against the US. It was pandemonium: leaping to my feet and screaming and hugging my friends and managing to bang my knee and pure joy.
Last time we won gold in men's hockey in 2002 I wrote an awful poem to celebrate. This time there was swearing and cheers and hilarious comments like this from my friend, after Danny Heatley (a Canadian player) laid a weak hit: "Yeah, Heatley, ease into it, like an old man into a bathtub. Asshole."
There are still people outside honking and cheering and celebrating. I can't stop smiling. What a fantastic day.
Happy birthday, musamea!!! I hope you're having a fantastic day.
I just came back from Reading Week, which was lovely and full of seeing friends and manicures and watching bad movies (Valentine's Day, you were just as bad as I thought you'd be) and seeing Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street at my favourite theatre. I'm always happy to go home.
I read most of L.M. Montgomery's books for the first time when I was between 10-12 and they're the books that have shaped my life the most. Especially the Emily trilogy: if I could be anyone in the world, real or fictional, I would be Emily, because of how deeply I love and understand her. I didn't read Rilla of Ingleside until last week, though, because it's the last of the Anne books and I didn't want to have read everything she's written, I wanted to have something left. So many people whose reading taste I trust have told me it's one of their favourites of all the Anne books, though, so I finally bought and read it and promptly fell in love with it. I laughed and cried and wondered how I could have waited so long to read this. Most of Montgomery's books are insular and don't mention the world events going on when they're set but Rilla of Ingleside isn't like that; it's all about the home front during the First World War.
There are some things that meant so much to me when I was younger which aren't nearly as good as I remember them being (there was a time when I thought She's All That was the greatest movie ever made). But L.M. Montgomery's books aren't like that for me. I've read them more times than any other books and they stand up to those repeated readings. I love them just as much now as I did when I was younger and I'm so grateful for that.
1. The Namesake - Jhumpa Lahiri 2. The Magician's Book: A Skeptic's Adventures in Narnia - Laura Miller 3. Sloppy Firsts - Megan McCafferty 4. About a Boy - Nick Hornby 5. Arthur & George - Julian Barnes 6. Memoirs of a Geisha - Arthur Golden 7. The Last Olympian - Rick Riordan 8. The Virgin's Lover - Philippa Gregory 9. The Yiddish Policemen's Union - Michael Chabon 10. Northanger Abbey - Jane Austen 11. Run - Ann Patchett 12. The Demon's Lexicon - Sarah Rees Brennan 13. Sacred - Dennis Lehane 14. Murder in Mesopotamia - Agatha Christie 15. Hercule Poirot's Christmas - Agatha Christie 16. Death on the Nile - Agatha Christie 17. On Beauty - Zadie Smith 18. The Hollow - Agatha Christie 19. The End of the Alphabet - C.S. Richardson 20. The Mystery of the Blue Train - Agatha Christie 21. Gods Behaving Badly - Marie Phillips 22. Cat Among the Pigeons - Agatha Christie 23. A Complicated Kindness - Miriam Toews 24. The Path of Minor Planets - Andrew Sean Greer 25. The A.B.C. Murders - Agatha Christie 26. The Moving Finger - Agatha Christie 27. The English Patient - Michael Ondaatje 28. Mansfield Park - Jane Austen 29. When You Are Engulfed in Flames - David Sedaris 30. Unaccustomed Earth - Jhumpa Lahiri 31. Her Fearful Symmetry - Audrey Niffenegger 32. Talking It Over - Julian Barnes 33. The Shipping News - Annie Proulx
If you like Keats, doomed love affairs, female characters whom you want to befriend, and/or good movies, please go see Bright Star. I loved it. And if you cry while walking home at night in the rain, then we are the same.
(I like law school and living in Toronto so far. I liked it more when I found out that this one girl (who already seemed nice and everything) wrote her English Honours thesis on John Keats and Fanny Brawne!)
1) I wrote my last final exam as an undergrad last Wednesday. It's so strange to think that it's over.
2) It snowed today and yesterday. It is the end of April and in normal cities, you expect showers or flowers. But I'm trying not to rise to the bait of the crazy weather, because I leave for Europe in three days. I'm going with two friends on the typical post-graduation tour. We're going to Spain, France, Germany and Ireland and I'm really excited to meet people and mangle languages and get lost and eat and eat. Also, to visit the Louvre properly this time, armed with the knowledge gleaned from a couple Art History courses (I have added specific museums to the list of places I want to go based on their collections of artists I love, like Friedrich and David). If anyone wants a postcard, please let me know.
3) I still have to hand in my final copy of my honours thesis. There does not seem to be enough time for the things I need to do before I go, so of course I would visit my favourite political blogs tonight. Let it never be said I didn't learn effective time management skills by this point.
I am almost entirely sure I'm going to law school this fall. However, I'm not sure where to go. I've been accepted at five schools and have narrowed (slightly) the choices to three: the University of Toronto, Columbia and New York University (NYU). I've visited all three schools and, in my opinion, they're all great. I don't think I can make a bad decision - I think I'd be happy at any of them - but I'm kind of afraid of not making the right one.
So, I turn to you, f-list, for advice. Here are the respective advantages: Toronto: - the most important academic advantage is that I REALLY want to study Canadian constitutional law, and obviously there's a lot more of that in Canada than in the US (plus, the U of T has a really strong constitutional program, anyway) - I can still take interesting courses in international law and do international human rights internships - I have a lot of family in Toronto, and I'd like to spend more time with them - I have a few friends going to the U of T next year, including one of my closest friends, so we could live together - It's easier to go from Canada to the US with a JD degree than it is to go the other way - Tuition is half the price of NYU and Columbia
NYU: - has the strongest international law program in North America, by most accounts (including amazing internship opportunities and faculty), and I also really want to study international law - has exchange programs with schools like Oxford and Paris II - by virtue of being in New York, I'll get opportunities I wouldn't get in Toronto - for example, the UN is there - there's lots of options for working closely with faculty on current cases or even co-authoring articles - New York's an awesome place to live - however, it doesn't have a campus, it's just a collection of buildings
Columbia: - a really strong all-around program, plus I love the campus - all the New York-specific advantages NYU has: location, opportunity, etc. - it gave me a really good feeling when I visited
Half of me thinks U of T (which is generally considered the best law school in Canada) is the best and most sensible option, while the other half wonders whether the opportunity to go to Columbia or NYU is too good to pass up. I was talking to one of my professors about it, and he told me about a conversation he had with his own professor about where he should go for his Ph.D. His professor said, "You can't really do what you want at Oxford, so it seems like you should go to Essex, except for one thing: if you don't go to Oxford, will you wonder what would have happened if you had for the rest of your life?" My professor went to Oxford, realized they had no one there for his political theory interests, and eventually got his Ph.D. elsewhere.
I don't know. It's a little scary for me, trying to peer into a foggy crystal ball and decide where I would be happiest. I'd appreciate any thoughts anyone has to offer.
1. Persuasion - Jane Austen 2. Artemis Fowl - Eoin Colfer 3. 1984 - George Orwell 4. A Reading Diary: A Passionate Reader's Reflections on a Year of Books - Alberto Manguel 5. Remember Me? - Sophie Kinsella 6. Lock & Key - Sarah Dessen 7. Twilight - Stephenie Meyer 8. New Moon - Stephenie Meyer 9. Eclipse - Stephenie Meyer 10. Shelf Monkey - Corey Redekop 11. Nomad's Hotel: Travels in Time and Space - Cees Nooteboom 12. Sense and Sensibility - Jane Austen 13. Eat, Pray, Love - Elizabeth Gilbert 14. Howl's Moving Castle - Diana Wynne Jones 15. Darkness, Take My Hand - Dennis Lehane 16. Prayers for Rain - Dennis Lehane 17. Avalon High - Meg Cabot 18. Cross Channel - Julian Barnes (short stories) 19. Franny and Zooey - J.D. Salinger 20. Weep Not, Child - Ngugi wa Thiongo 21. Dangerous Liaisons - Choderlos de Laclos 22. The Last Summer (of You and Me) - Ann Brashares 23. The Boleyn Inheritance - Philippa Gregory 24. Kabul in Winter: Life Without Peace in Afghanistan - Ann Jones 25. A Great and Terrible Beauty -Libba Bray 26. Prep - Curtis Sittenfeldd