In honor of her 100th TBR Thursday post, FictionFan created the 100 Book Tag. Since it was published on my birthday, I have taken as a sign that I should also complete it. ;-)
My 100th book is The Ice Princess – which, ironically, is there because of a review by FictionFan many moons ago! (I follow other book blogs, really!)
Open your current book to page 100 (or randomly, if you don’t have page numbers on your e-reader) and quote a few sentences that you like.
I took your letter to Friend Wife, who was cooking the family dinner, and, having read it, she laid it absently down on a large sheet of fly-paper, so I shall have to answer it from memory.
I’ve been working my way through A Life in Letters – a collection of letters written by P.G. Wodehouse – for quite some time now. Every page is a gem, as to be expected!
When you are 100, what author(s) do you know you will still be re-reading regularly? (This should be an easy one for those of you who are already over 100…)
This is a hard one. Obviously Wodehouse and also Agatha Christie, plus L.M. Montgomery and Louisa May Alcott. It’s really impossible to go wrong picking up any of their books.
Post #100 looks like a review for The Little Women Letters by Gabrielle Donnelly. I gave it 3/5 and had mixed feelings about it. I said –
Negatives can basically be expressed in one word: feminism. B O R I N G stereotypical feminism. Mom’s speeches frequently sound like they were lifted from a pamphlet on how to be a Modern Supportive Mother; she’s constantly going on about how women have to continue to fight for their equality, blah blah blah. And to me, it just detracts from the story, not the part where these young women are learning to be independent and unique parts of society, but the part where the speeches just sound so canned, as though the whole book as been written around them.
And I think that the reason that it is so distracting is because it just doesn’t fit with the flow of the story, or the lives that these young women are living. Because yes, they’re independent and intelligent and all of that, but they also are essentially feminine in their attitudes (in a good way). They love their family and all three want to be in loving, secure, happy relationships with a special person. All three of the girls learn lessons about the importance of self-sacrifice, not because “you’re a woman so you have to make sacrifices for your man” but because “you love someone, and sometimes that means gladly sacrificing something you want so they can have what they want.” But instead of letting their actions tell that story–which they do–the author insists on inserting these random speeches from Mom that grate on my nerves.
And yes, I still agree with my thoughts. Mostly, I get frustrated when I read books where it feels like the author is saying what she thinks she’s expected to say (in this instance, boring feminist rants that are pointless) instead of what she actually believes/feels is right. The story itself was done well, but it felt like Donnelly was scared to write a book about happy women ending up happily married unless she stressed the fact that her characters were also feminists.
Name a book you love that has less than 100 pages. Why do you love it?
This is a hard one because I don’t really read a lot of short stories or novellas. So instead I turned to my shelf of children’s books – and then it became harder for a different reason – which to choose?!
But I think that my top two favorites (at least at this exact moment) are The Big Orange Splot by Daniel Pinkwater and Black and White by David MacCauley. I highly recommend both.
The Big Orange Splot is incredibly colorful and happy, about a man who lives on a street where all the houses are the same… until one day, when a bird drops a can of paint on the man’s roof. It’s a really fantastic story about thinking independently and being yourself.
Black and White is super creative, telling four stories at the same time. Of course, they are four separate stories – or are they? They pictures are fantastic, and trying to figure out how the tales weave together is a large part of the book’s charm.
If someone gave you £100, what would be the five books you would rush to buy? (Should there be any change, please consider contributing it to the FictionFan Home for Unwanted Chocolate…)
OH MY GOSH this actually just happened to me! My birthday was Thursday, so the husband turned me loose in my favorite book store with a generous stipend. That is actually going to be covered in my next post!!!
What book do you expect to be reading 100 days from now?
It’s hard to say how far along I will be, but my best guess is probably The Wind is Not a River by Brian Payton, recommended by Lady Fancifull’s review back in July 2015.
The GoodReads blurb says:
The Wind Is Not a River is Brian Payton’s gripping tale of survival and an epic love story in which a husband and wife—separated by the only battle of World War II to take place on American soil—fight to reunite in Alaska’s starkly beautiful Aleutian Islands.
Following the death of his younger brother in Europe, journalist John Easley is determined to find meaning in his loss. Leaving behind his beloved wife, Helen, he heads north to investigate the Japanese invasion of Alaska’s Aleutian Islands, a story censored by the U.S. government.
While John is accompanying a crew on a bombing run, his plane is shot down over the island of Attu. He survives only to find himself exposed to a harsh and unforgiving wilderness, known as “the birthplace of winds.” There, John must battle the elements, starvation, and his own remorse while evading discovery by the Japanese.
Alone at home, Helen struggles with the burden of her husband’s disappearance. Caught in extraordinary circumstances, in this new world of the missing, she is forced to reimagine who she is—and what she is capable of doing. Somehow, she must find John and bring him home, a quest that takes her into the farthest reaches of the war, beyond the safety of everything she knows.
I’m actually quite interested in the bits of World War II that happened in Alaska, so I’ve had my eye on this book for a while.
Looking at The Guardian’s list of “The 100 greatest novels of all time”, how many have you read? Of the ones you haven’t, which ones would you most like to read? And which will you never read?
I’ve actually only managed to read 18 of the books on this list – mostly the children’s books, although I do have a few on the TBR, like Three Men a Boat by Jerome K. Jerome and Don Quixote which I have started probably a half dozen times. I’ve also read about a half of Wuthering Heights before giving up. I realized the only way that I would consider the ending happy is if the plague came and killed every single character because I hated all of them passionately. I hate a similar experience with Jane Eyre, so it’s possible that the Bronte sisters just aren’t for me. (But I’ve seen the Wishbone episodes, so that counts, right??)
On the whole, while I understand that a lot of books are considered “classics” or “must reads,” I’m really only into reading books that have characters I like and then at least some of them get happy endings. Life is too short for me to spend wading through hundreds of pages of depression.
Free Question – Create a 100 themed question of your own choice and answer it.
My question is – what book do you wish you had a hundred copies of so you could give them out to random people?
I think for this one I would probably go with The Hiding Place by Corrie ten Boom. The story is excellent – and true – and while at times sad and difficult, ultimately full of hope.
Hopefully some of you will participate in this happy Book Tag – and thanks again, FictionFan, for thinking of it!! :-)