Nov 9, 2014

Quickly, and Always Expressively

Just wanted to write a quick note, especially since the daily entries thing has pretty much gone out the window.

I'm more than halfway through The Virgin Suicides by Jeffrey Eugenides. Again, the weekend is prime TV-watching time. Now that Doctor Who and Downton Abbey are both done until their Christmas specials next month, I've subbed in The Newsroom which just came back tonight. Of course, The Walking Dead and The X Factor remain for the rest of the month.

I'm still on only 5 or 6 shows a week, but unfortunately I still rely on the sound of TV to fall asleep at night -- which is something I plan to rectify as a New Year's Resolution. I'm usually pretty good with resolutions when they are reasonable; I'm more likely to be successful at "read more, watch TV less" than "give up carbs" or something. More on that in December.

So far, I like Eugenides' writing style. He's a bit sarcastic and very on-point with all the mendacity of suburban life. I'll say this too: I've never seen the movie, but I keep picturing Kirsten Dunst as Lux. Don't tell me if that's who she played. I don't even know anyone else who was in it; I just remember knowing she did it with Sofia Coppola directing and that's how they met before doing Marie Antoinette. 

I'm hoping to be done in the next day but tomorrow is jam-packed. I hope I can get it done and have a review up by Tuesday night. Happy reading!

Nov 6, 2014

No One Talks in Aphorisms, or Why Lord Henry Should Have Died

WARNING: The following post contains spoilers for "The Picture of Dorian Gray." If you are somehow so culturally devoid (or having lived under a rock) you don't know the story of Dorian Gray and would like to remain unspoiled, you should recuse yourself immediately. If however, you've read the tome, are familiar with Dorian's end, or don't fancy reading it at some point in your life (a true mistake IMHO) you may read on. Yes, I'm aware how odd the tone of this is.

Even without having gotten to the fourth chapter, I knew Basil would come to a sticky (or perhaps pointy?) end. I'm sorry for that. He was too curious after all, having gone to visit Dorian one last time. "What a schmuck," I said to myself after he followed Dorian home once he saw him in the street. He should have just taken the uninterrupted wait at Dorian's as a sign to leave and never look back. He would have gone to Paris, become some celebrated painter for a time, then got addicted to absinthe or opium and died in an alley or bathhouse. But the poor sod, the poor lovesick idiot, he just had to chase after Dorian after seeing him on the street. Some people can't leave well-enough alone.

On that cliché bombshell, let's talk about Lord Henry Wotton, or Harry as he was called so frequently. I detest people like Lord Henry, so I refuse to refer to him as such a jovial nickname. Not to mention, if someone was a lord or a person of the peerage, would they let even their friends call them by a nickname, even back then? I'm not sure I suppose John Fitzgerald Kennedy was "Jack" to friends and family, but probably not once he was President of the United States. Be that as it may...

Nov 3, 2014

Sticking To The Plan - It's Not NaNo

Normally around this time (the month of November) I would either be lamenting not starting a NaNoWriMo novel, not being good at doing NaNoWriMo, or not following through on something I've started (probably earlier in the autumn or possibly over the summer). Oddly, I've not done any of those things so far and that's because lately I finish things I start. 

Now I know what you're thinking, especially if you've known me personally for a number of years: That's not possible, Jennifer. You NEVER finish things you start. You never finished karate lessons, tap lessons, viola lessons, learning Mandarin, learning to code, learning how to edit in Final Cut Pro, cleaning your apartment, cleaning your room, ad infinitum. And you'd be right. Except now, it's NOT TRUE.

Nov 2, 2014

Yes, I Have Started Reading - An Update

Seems I've already slacked off in the "one entry a day" department. Have no fear-- I am reading.

Yesterday I had a terrible night's sleep, followed by a five-hour bridal shower afternoon (including a carpool). By the time I returned home, I took a nap and then got to watch two of my shows I'm allowed which both air on Saturday evenings. Today/tonight is similar, except I've a meeting in the middle of the day and three shows to watch later. It looks like my weekends will be for distractions instead of reading (at least until Doctor Who ends for the series).

Oct 31, 2014

The "Read Like Rory" List - A Comprehensive Construction

Here is a comprehensive list of all the "Read Like Rory" books, i.e. any books or stories that were read, seen, mentioned, quoted, or otherwise referenced in the series Gilmore Girls. This list is complete, unlike other sites' lists, because I've cross referenced it with the Gilmore Girls Wikia (which is not 100% complete), the actual episodes, and the original list provided by The WB in "Rory's Book Club" (a now defunct webpage). For your convenience, the whole list is there (including what I couldn't download yet or find in my personal library) with clear labels as to what I won't be reading and what I would like to read, even if I know the story already. As previously stated, there is absolutely NO WAY I will be reading 300+ books in one month, but it's a jumping off point to becoming well-read. You can also use this list as a Table of Contents, since I will also link to post(s) regarding a book/story here.

Oct 29, 2014

The Announcement and The Challenge

[Adapted from my Facebook post - syndicated to G+ and Twitter.]

It's time to announce the November project!

After doing a full rewatch of Gilmore Girls earlier this month I realized how ridiculously well-read Rory is. Upon further research, it seems the Internet agrees with me. I used to think I was well-read. I mean, I'd read for pleasure, for school, in my spare time, and whenever I got a chance I would go to the local library and spend hours in there. The librarians knew me. But that was when I was a kid. I'd say that after my YA obsession died down a few years ago, so did my reading ability.

Nowadays, it takes me weeks to finish a book -- even smaller ones. All I read are strongly popular books, books written by author friends, and debut novel galleys. I don't like this. I shouldn't be reading a book so I can catch up with a TV show or because a movie is coming out of a book I haven't read. I should read because I want to. Because I love it. I live even closer to the library now and 99% of the time I go in there it's to buy a soda or get change for the bus.

Oct 16, 2014

Changing Directions - I'm Becoming a Book Blog

I don't read nearly as often as I should. By "should" I mean "as is recommended" or "should due to the sheer amount of books I have in my possession or in my TBR pile." TBR means "to be read" by the way, in case you're not of the book-club-going, book-a-thon-reading, too-many-books-so-little-time variety like the rest of us.

I'm turning this into a proper book blog. I had one, sort of: my Tumblr "Officially Obsessed" had a bunch of updates and reviews and reading progress notes. It didn't smack of "this girl is well-read" and the obscene amount of Instagram pictures of food prepared at a bevy of exotic restaurants probably has something to do with that. The fact that I've never reviewed a book of actual substance may also have had a say.

How do I begin? How do I become "well-read?" Find me five years ago and I was under the impression I was well-read. After all, I was reading Shakespeare at 10 years old and attempting Dostoyevsky at 11 years old (we won't discuss the results). However, there were a few years of no books there before Harry Potter brought me back to The Land of The Readers and into the YA cult. I do often tell people "I watch more TV per hours in the day than the average person is awake hours in the day." So how does a TV addict start reading again?