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For the last few summers I’ve kept track of the number of books I’ve read, but there was never a set starting or ending date for “summer”. Just when my finals and responsibilities were done and I got to escape from the required literature of my major.

But I think I’ve found my official New Year of Books date (April 28) because nothing says an end to responsibilities and the beginning of the fluff books like an emergency ovarian cyst surgery. ☺

This post is either:
1) bragging
2) basic record keeping, or
3) sharing the fruits of my quite enjoyable labors.

Probably a little of all, and LATE besides.

{booklist, roughly in order}

Total: 56 read, 8 re-read

Notation Key: *=re-read book; (gn)=graphic novel; (ab)=audiobook; (cb)=children’s book, bolding=this book was so good! And made me think too!

1. Vampire Academy—Richelle Mead
2. Definitely Dead*—Charlaine Harris
3. All Together Dead—Charlaine Harris
4. Shalador’s Lady—Anne Bishop
5. Phoenix and Ashes*—Mercedes Lackey
6. Welcome to the Jungle—Jim Butcher
7. Mona Lisa Craving—Sunny
8. Mona Lisa Darkening—Sunny
9. Tangled Webs*—Anne Bishop
10. Serenity: Better Days (gn)—Joss Whedon
11. American Gods*—Neil Gaiman
12. Foundation—Mercedes Lackey
13. Wolverine: The End (gn)—????
14. 1802 (gn)—Neil Gaiman
15. Rules of Engagement—Elizabeth Moon
16. Grave Secret—Charlaine Harris
17. Backup*—Jim Butcher
18. The Looking Glass War—Frank Beddar
19. The Help—Kathryn Stockett
20. Ultimate Fantastic Four (gn)—???
21. Fantastic Four (gn)—J. Michael Straczynski(?)
22. The Dresden Files: Storm Front V. 1 (gn)—Jim Butcher
23. Marvel 1602: New World (gn)
24. The Lightning Thief (cb)—Rick Riodan [Percy Jackson and the Olympians]
25. The Sea of Monsters (cb)—Rick Riodan
26. The Titan’s Curse (cb)—Rick Riodan
27. The Battle of the Labyrinth (cb)—Rick Riodan
28. Cyrano de Bergerac (play)—Edmund Rostrand, trans. Hooker
29. The Machine Stops (ab)—E. M. Forster
30. Perdido Street Station—China Miéville
31. Animal Farm—George Orwell
32. Court Duel*—Sherwood Smith
33. Silver Borne—Patricia Briggs
34. Mona Lisa Blossoming*—Sunny
35. Mean Streets (only ½, but I count it anyway)—Jim Butcher et al.
36. Silver Borne*—yeah, reread this one FAST
37. Buffy the Vampire Hunter (gn)—Joss Whedon
38. By the Sword—F. Paul Wilson
39. Armageddon in Retrospect (ab)—Kurt Vonnegut
40. The Harlequin—Laurell K Hamilton
41. The Fantastic Four: Civil War (gn)—???
42. Blood Noir—Laurell K Hamilton
43. Cerulean Sins—Laurell K. Hamilton
44. Masques—Patricia Briggs
45. Romeo and Juliet (play)—Shakespeare
46. The Graveyard Book (cb?)—Neil Gaiman
47. Midnight Embrace—Amanda Ashley
48. Nameless—Sam Starbuck
49. Charitable Getting—Sam Starbuck
50. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (cb?)—J.K. Rowling
51. Los mercaderos del diablo (cb)—Juan Farias
52. Love Wins (ab)—Rob Bell
53. Paradise Regained—John Milton
54. Red Riding Hood—Sarah Blakley-Cartwright
55. Purgatorio (ab)—Dante Alighieri trans. Longfellow
56. Eirick the Red’s Saga (ab)—anonymous

Note: My numbering system is crazy, because I don’t count short stories read on their own, but I do count graphic novels which are probably about the same amount of text and content, and I count children’s chapter books, but not smaller children’s books, and I’m not counting fanfic at all (which kills my total, btw) because it’s hard to put it into neat packages.

 
* * *
 
Reading Commentary

--Charlaine Harris, Laurell K. Hamilton and Sunny I read for the sex, but the sex (literary! LITERARY!) was not that great this summer.

--Two other things that were not that great: Midnight Embrace (it was a gift, so I finished it, dammit, but now I need to write a realistic, creepy vampire romance to get the irrational crawling feeling of a sickeningly cheesy romance novel off my skin) and Red Riding Hood (I hated it, but I paid €10 for it, so I read it, dammit. This book doesn’t even inspire me. Just makes me want to set things on fire. Books are supposed to be LESS shallow than their movies, even the novelizations…)

--Neil Gaiman. Read him. Just…read him. American Gods (in addition to being the focus of my senior seminar paper) was one of the two things (the other is Supernatural) that convinced me that maybe my life was worth writing about. Which, folk had been telling me that for a while (more in another post) but those two things make me go “Hell, yeah, that’s my life, and yes it WAS interesting.”

--CLASSICS: which I define as “Anything public domain and/or required for a lit major”. I used to never read these during the summer. Not because I don’t love them, but because I read enough of that during the school year, thank you, and I needed paranormal romance novel and fluff fantasy to balance out my humors. This year, knowing I NEVER HAVE TO GO BACK, MWHAHAHH, I actually read and adored a lot. They’re not to everyone’s taste, but there’s something epic the consistent human emotions and desires contained there-in. I like experiencing different literary styles. And iambic pentameter is pretty nice to listen to while walking (thank you librivox.org for hours and hours of audiobooks!)

--The Help: I wasn’t excited by the back (I read very little normal fiction; it’s a tragic apathy, or maybe just the fact that I would rather watch things explode…) but it was a gift so I read it. In two days, staying up way too late, and I either cried, or I came damn close to crying. Which doesn’t happen a lot.

--Sam Starbuck: one of the great tragedies of my reading life is that I’ve burned through most of his fanfic masterlist that I’m willing to read (the little that remains I either don't want to spoil myself or I don't think it will make sense if I read the fanfic before watching/reading the original media. Though let me say that a few series are on my future reading list because of his work...).
 

Date: 2011-04-29 03:02 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] justmmy.livejournal.com
--Charlaine Harris, Laurell K. Hamilton and Sunny I read for the sex, but the sex (literary! LITERARY!) was not that great this summer.
I adore you <3

Dude, ovarian cyst surgery! D:
I actually have a friend who just recently had some complications from a cyst. They didn't remove it... just told her 'yea, it could pop any day now. here's some aleve.' -__-;

I keep seeing these lists everywhere and I just... I don't get them. Is there a master list and you're supposed to read everything on it, or do you just make a list for yourself and set out to read everything?

Date: 2011-04-29 03:21 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] brosedshield.livejournal.com
Haha. This is just the list of books I actually read this year. I don't have a list of books I WANT to read, per se. Or, if I do, it's a strictly mental slush pile of authors, genre, and titles that I've heard good, interesting, or pertinent things about.

Like "EVERYTHING BY NEIL GAIMAN" is on my "to-read" mental list, and "Paradiso" (because now I've read 2/3 of the Divine Comedy and I want bragging rights) and "Titus Andronicus" because it's Shakespeare and I love him (and it's got death, rape and catastrophe in it), and the latest Anne Bishop book because that series owns a chunk of my soul and I'm not even that ashamed. But I also MIGHT pick up something about the architect Gaudi, because someone should write fanfic about him being an alien, and whichever new paranormal romance has the most intriguing cover when I get back to the library, and "Trace" when Sam Starbuck finishes writing it. And at least the first book in the His Dark Materials series because I've heard interesting things and want to judge for myself. "The Court of the Air", because I read half of it this summer and then lost momentum and then had to return it to the libary...

Yeah, I kind of just collect a list of books in my head and then when it's convenient to find and read them I do. :)

I have no idea if that answered your question or not.

In on other topics, cysts suck! Went to the emergency room the day before senior year Final Week thinking I had appendicitis and turns out I just had SOFTBALL SIZED cysts. And a twisted/dead ovary BECAUSE of the softball-sized cysts. There was a lot of draining and removing of organs his summer. *sigh*

Date: 2011-04-29 03:33 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] justmmy.livejournal.com
Like "EVERYTHING BY NEIL GAIMAN" is on my "to-read" mental list
Did I already mention how much I adore you? I think it bears repeating.

I've only read one thing by Anne Bishop but it was pretty cool. I liked the way she crafted the world of the story -- was very believable. You haven't read the His dark Materials series? Oh guurrrrrl, you are in for a treat! Haha! I haven't finished the last book yet *hangs head in shame* but I do love that series. The movie ruined it, but the books are fantastic. Again, I appreciate it when an author can craft a believable world that's so distinctly different from ours.

Holy crap, dude! D: *hugs and smishes and lovins* I'm so sorry to hear that. Jesus. You're doing okay now tho?

Date: 2011-04-29 03:42 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] brosedshield.livejournal.com
I'm doing great, now, actually, but I'm probably about due to go get an ultrasound and see if I'm getting cysts again. I'm just apparently a mutant who doesn't ever flush them out of her system (AND an idiot who ignores health warning signs, but in my defense, whoever thinks of CYSTS? I just thought I had weird intestine pains...)

Which book did you read by Anne Bishop? I somehow always enjoy reading her books, even when I'm thinking "Wow, I think you're a ridiculous character" the whole time. They fill a very specific reading niche for me, and I need them like I need trace amounts of certain minor vitamins: can go a lot time without, but sometimes I craaaaave.

Date: 2011-04-29 03:47 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] justmmy.livejournal.com
Haha! Best analogy EVER.

I read Sebastian. Though now that I think about it, I don't think I ever actually finished it. I think I got sidetracked with school or something and had to return it to the library only a few chapters shy of finishing.... damn, I should check it out again.

Well, I'm glad you're okay now. And I totally hear you, ignoring warning signs. My father beat it into me that unless I'm vomiting up my organs or my fever is making my brain boil, I'm not really sick. ;D

Date: 2011-04-29 03:57 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] brosedshield.livejournal.com
Haha, Sebastian! He thinks he's so much more of a badass than he is...

I've read the Ephemera series (probably a chunk of inspiration for Hell Shall Not Wash Us Away) and the Black Jewels Trilogy, and LOVE both worlds and giggle at all the characters. Except that all the guys in BJT are...awesome, scary and hot, so I'm actually more prone to sighing sadly.

I'm pretty willing to ADMIT that I'm sick, but, honestly, what is there to do about it? If I have a cold, I take cold meds. If I have pain, I take pain meds. If I'm throwing up or feverish I have permission to take it easy. Having fairly bad health insurance has trained me to think that reasons to get medical help are 1) MASSIVE INJURY 2) antibiotics or 3) pain so intense you either need to deal with an underlying cause or get a REALLY GOOD pain prescription.

Yup, though I guess #3 should have tipped me off a LITTLE sooner about the cysts. But my mom also had a similar attack of INTENSE PAIN and they didn't actually find anything wrong with her. I now think it was probably cysts bursting but still, they didn't notice. Ah, medicine. I love it but sometimes...

Date: 2011-04-29 04:02 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] justmmy.livejournal.com
Haha! I guess I should read more of these books, then.... I remember I enjoyed what I did read.

Sounds about right. :/

Jeez. Well... I'm glad you guys are both okay. *hugs*

Date: 2011-04-29 05:00 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] brosedshield.livejournal.com
Thanks! *hugs back* And let me know how you like the books if you read them!

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