Friday, January 01, 2010

Rabbit, rabbit, Good Luck in the New Year!

I posted my rabbit, rabbit last night before I went out to toast it, and I have no idea what happened to it. So, here it is, in its tardiness.

So, since I'm late, I might as well linger here, and admit that the end of this holiday season is a relief this year. There have been some melancholy facts of life that seem strangely juxtaposed onto this year's biggest party season, reminding me that nothing stays the same forever. I've been more exhausted this week than I have been for a long time, probably fighting off a cold and certainly not getting enough exercise. I've had really weird dreams.

I don't have enough umph to actually write a review for the very last book I managed to finish this year, but I will say a few words about That Old Cape Magic, by Richard Russo. This novel focuses on Jack Griffin and his unhappy childhood with his selfish, snobby, and unfullfilled parents. It's a very thoughtful look at how our parents shape our lives, and how hard it can be to get over past hurts and get on with one's life. I recommend it, which I'm sure is about the most predictable thing I will say this year.

These are the books I've managed to finish this year, most of which I've written a lot more about.

1. The Book of the Unknown: Tales of the Thirty-Six, by Jonathan Keats
2. The Reader, by Bernhard Schlink
3. Making Money, by Terry Pratchett
4. The Secret History, by Donna Tartt
5. The Beet Queen by Louise Erdich
6. Four Spirits, by Sena Jeter Naslund
7. American Rust, by Philipp Meyer
8. Gilead, by Marilynne Robinson
9. Wicked, by Gregory Maguire
10. The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao, Junot Diaz
11. The Stone Diaries, by Carol Shields
12. Gentlemen of the Road, by Michael Chabon
13. The Falls, by Joyce Carol Oates
14. The Women, by T.C. Boyle
15. The White Tiger, by Aravind Adiga
16. A Long Way Down, by Nick Hornby
17. Vineland, by Thomas Pynchon
18. The Secret Garden, by Frances Hodgson Burnett
19. The Truth, by Terry Pratchett
20. My Mistress's Sparrow Is Dead, Jeffrey Eugenides, ed.
21. Deer Hunting with Jesus, by Joe Bageant
22. The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, by Stieg Larsson
23. The Book of Lost Things, by John Connolly]
24. Fool (a novel), by Christopher Moore
25. A Reliable Wife, by Robert Goolrick
26. The Collector, by John Fowles
27. We Were the Mulvaneys, by Joyce Carol Oates
28. That Old Cape Magic, by Richard Russo

I've been reading Brief Interviews with Hideous Men, by David Foster Wallace, for a long time now, and finding some parts to be very difficult. It is more than apparent why he was often compared to Thomas Pynchon.

In other news, I gained weight his year and I did it the old fashioned way: I earned it.


Doug said...

You hide the extra ounces well, I'm sure. Best to the whole family in 2010. It sounds like you're having an '09ish beginning.

Hey, it just occurred to me, we've lived all the way through Arthur C. Clarke.

actonbell said...

Heh, someone just pointed that out to me, Doug. I'm not sure I've ever read anything by Arthur C. Clarke. I've neglected so much.

Jocelyn said...

Well, I can one-up you: I lost weight and regained most of it this year, so I can play both sides of that issue.

I love that you track your reading; just tonight, I was wishing I noted each book I read, along with a few reactions, just so, in future years, I can look back and remember.

Oh, and guess which book I'm due to start in about ten minutes here? The new Russo. I'm SOOO glad you recommend it!

TLP said...

No one else can see the weight. Must be all of two ounces.