Tuesday, September 14, 2010
My Blogiversary and a Giveaway!
Just for fun, I thought I'd look back over the past year and compile a few stats about some of the books I reviewed (sadly, I haven't reviewed every single book I've read. That would leave less time for reading). Anyway:
Blog entries: 93
Books reviewed: 74
Contemporary fiction: 18
Juvenile books: 9
Young adult books: 4
Short story collections: 5
Books in translation: 7
Books by nonwhite writers: 4
Books by men: 33
Books by women: 37
Note: these stats don't always add up evenly because books may fall under two categories or have multiple authors, i.e., short story collections. Anyway, I thought it was quite interesting -- my split between male and female authors was pretty even. I'm definitely going to try and read more world lit and books in translation, and books by nonwhite authors. Of course, since I'm trying to read lots of classics, most of the authors are dead white males. But I suppose that can't be helped.
Book Blogger Appreciation Week, I'm giving away a book! Since this blog is all about sharing my favorite books, I'm giving away a paperback copy of one of my favorite books reviewed in the past year. If you'd like to be entered in the drawing, please choose a book from the list below and leave a comment. Tell me what you liked about the review or why the book interests you. Each title has links to my original review for your reading pleasure. The drawing ends Friday at 3 p.m, Central Standard Time. All eligible applicants will be entered into a drawing, and the winner will be chosen at random. One entry per person, and be sure and leave your email address so I can contact you! The paperback book (I'll select the edition) will be mailed worldwide from The Book Depository. Here are your choices, in no particular order:
NOTE: The book giveaway is now over. Thanks for all the entries and comments!
1. Daddy Long-Legs and Dear Enemy by Jean Webster (Penguin Classics edition). Charming epistolary fiction, and an unappreciated classic. The book that inspired this blog.
2. Bleak House by Charles Dickens. It's long, it's complicated, there are far too many unbelievable coincidences -- it's Dickens!! What's not to like?
Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day. A joy and a delight, and my first Persephone Classic.
4. Fingersmith by Sarah Waters. A twisty-turny Dickensian page turner. Wowza. I've never read a 500-page book so quickly.
5. My Family and Other Animals by Gerald Durrell. A delightful true story of a quirky family of British expats living in Greece, told from the point of view of the youngest child.
6. A Very Long Engagement by Sebastien Japrisot. A French bestseller about the horrors of WWI and a disabled woman's search for her missing fiance. Brilliant, and beautifully adapted into film. So worth reading.
The Painted Veil by W. Somerset Maugham. Kitty Fane is the bored wife of bacteriologist Walter Fane, who decides to take his adulterous wife to a remote village in China during a cholera outbreak in the 1920s. Sound promising? Well, it's Maugham, so it's tragic, but fascinating. Kitty is one of my favorite trainwreck heroines.
8. Roald Dahl's Book of Ghost Stories. Particularly appropriate this time of year, especially for those signed up for the RIP Challenge.
The Apprentice: My Life in the Kitchen by Jacques Pepin. A great food memoir -- with recipes.
10. The Belly of Paris by Emile Zola. A French classic AND great food writing!
11. When You Reach Me by Rebecca Stead. The 2009 Newbery Award winner. I couldn't put it down, and it made me bawl like a little kid. I loved it.
12. Three Men in a Boat by Jerome K. Jerome. Imagine if Bertie Wooster and his two equally clueless friends went on a pleasure trip down the Thames, but instead of Jeeves they brought a fox terrier. Lots of digressions and silly observations about life. It's hilarious, and it never ceases to amaze me that this book was written 100 years ago. One of the funniest things I've ever read.