Basically, since last week. on the print front, I haven’t done jack. I haven’t touched Tortilla Flat (by John Steinbeck)  in something like three weeks and A Short History of Byzantium (by John Julius Norwich) has likewise been languishing. I’m tired. Maybe it’s allergies. Maybe it’s the allocation of my discretionary time that previously went to reading that is now going to exercising. Maybe I’m in a slump. I’m not certain; but if I don’t get some reading time in this week-end, I fear I may actually go insane! 

Look at that! Does anybody remember the last time anything on this list even moved, much less got read? Sigh. Well, the summer’s oyung yet…

  1. The Little Book (by Selden Edwards) – Mount TBR
  2. Netherland (by Joseph O’Neill) – Mount TBR
  3. Atonement (by Ian McEwan) – Mount TBR
  4. Emma (by Jane Austen) – Back to the Classics; Mount TBR
  5. The Royal Road to Fotheringhay (by Jean Plaidy) – Mount TBR
  6. Pest Control (by Bill Hughes) – What’s in a Name? Challenge #5
  7. The Religion (by Tim Willocks) – Mount TBR
  8. The Time Traveler’s Wife (by Audrey Neffenegger) – Mount TBR
  9. The Age of Innocence (by Edith Wharton)
  10. Sea of Poppies (by Amitav Ghosh)


I had a couple of false starts this week: I began listening to Packing for Mars: The Curious Science of Life in the Void (by Mary Roach; narrated by Sandra Burr) and couldn’t make it past the first CD. It’s a non-fiction book about all the technical and pragmatic considerations that must be made for astronauts who spend any amount of time in space. The narrator just destroyed the book: She was so neutral that she bordered on monotone; gave no shape to the text (she just moved from one section to the next without indicating that she had realized that the topic had changed) and; she read all the footnotes (introducing each with the word “note” and ending each with the word(s) “end-note”) without regard to the flow of the narrative. Also, a sense of humor might have helped. The book has a faintly quirky feel to it; but it’s pretty much buried in the narrator’s interpretative style. One day I may get back to the book… in print; but for now I’ve got a gazillion other titles lined up. I had picked the audio up only because I was interested in joining an online discussion about it; but I’ve got to move on.

I then started listening to The Eleventh Plague (by Jeff Hirsch; narrated by Dan Bittner.) It’s a YA title that actually sounded promising. I then somehow managed to delete it from my iTunes and iPod. I think I meant to delete Pinned (by Alfred C. Martino; narrated by Mark Shanahan) when I decided I didn’t want to participate in the SYNC listening program; but deleted The Eleventh Hour instead 😦

Anyway, purchased and dnloaded A Discovery of Witches (by Deborah Harkness; narrated by Jennifer Ikeda) and the story’s very interesting. It’s about a witch who inadvertently calls up a spell-bound book from the stacks at the Bodleian library… The narrator has a nice voice; but her pronunciations are suspect (She pronounces Magdalene as “MAG-duh-lin” instead of “Maud-lyn.” Now I wonder what else she may be mis-pronouncing; but I’m too lazy to go check the OED every
time a suspect word pops up.) and her accents aren’t great; but I’ll finish the audio barring any mishap. That said, Il’l probably read the upcoming sequel in print.

  1. Vacation (by Matthew Costello; narrated by Peter Macon)
  2. The Bone House (by Brian Freeman; narrated by Joe Barrett) – Thriller/Suspense
  3. Silent Scream (by Karen Rose; narrated by Marguerite Gavin) – Thriller/Suspense
  4. My Dog Tulip (by J.R. Ackerley; narrated by Ralph Cosham) – Biography/Memoir
  5. The 4% Universe (by Richard Penak; narrated by Ray Porter) – Non-Fiction
  6. My Korean Deli (by Ben Ryder Howe; narrated by Bronson Pinchot) – Non-Fiction
  7. The 13-1/2 Lives of Captain Bluebear (by Walter Moers; narrated by Bronson Pinchot) – Fantasy
  8. Rumo and His Miraculous Adventures (by Walter Moers; narrated by Bronson Pinchot) – Fantasy
  9. Wolf Hall (by Hillary Mantel; narrated by Simon Slater)
  10. Passage to Power (by Robert Caro; narrated by Grover Gardner)

BTW, I am seriously thinking about moving this feature over to my regular blog. I love the ease of tumblr, but the feature may get more attention over on the blogger site. I still haven’t decided, so if you have an opinion, please do share!


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