The list author says: "I have nothing fancy to add here. I go through stages of reading a lot and then slowing down. I used to love the days years ago when I devoted more time to my music and less time to a real job, and seemed to have so much more time to simply read. Sometimes it seemed the only way to get through a stack of books was to make a game out of it.. a challenge... how fast can you go? Then I made the mistake to get a real job :P and watch your free time for things like reading books go right out the window, along with your creativity. I went from reading 20-30 books a year to maybe 3. It was like an entirely different frame of mind. The headspace I needed to be in to read was gone... lost. Boy did it suck! A few years have gone by. I still work too much, but I give up some other things, like sleep, to get some reading done. I'm making a concerted effort once again, and it feels good. But I'm impatient. And when I have so many books, many of which I purchased years ago, and which still have not been read, waiting to be read... well, I need to challenge myself again. What am I interested in? Many many things. I find my way to books through a variety of channels. Movies, musicians, comedians, the odd trending topic I find myself lured to now and then, or returning to over and over... and then sometimes I try to give myself a bit of an education - perhaps one I missed out on a little back in school because I wasn't paying attention ;) A book is rarely enjoyed when it's forced upon you. I like to find my own way there. I suppose it's why I have two dozen books on my bedside table alone, so that when I finish one book, which to read next is still entirely up to me.
So below is the few titles I've encountered this year... and a few more I hope to get done before 11:59pm on December 31st.
"Another book I had sitting on my shelf for years. I needed something light-hearted and easy to read to help me get back into the groove of reading, but of course something still fun to read. This book reminded me why I've always loved Neil Gaiman's writing, going back to being a teenager and reading Sandman comics."
"I bought this on my travels last year in New York. I remember the pang of excitement as I walked to St Mark's Bookshop in East Village as they were staying open til 1am, specifically to be the first to offer Pynchon's latest. It became my traveling companion for the rest of my US Holiday... finally finished it this year!"
"I'm not vegetarian... yet. But I was familiar with Foer's fiction, and something drew me to this. I may be naive, but I'm happy to say that things don't "appear" to be this bad with (factory) farming in Australia, but it still made me start researching many of the products I do eat. So it has definitely made me more aware and conscious of what I put in my body."
"Flicking through a housemate's copy of Empire magazine I read an article on Winterbottom's adaptation of the book, and the hype/hoo-ha surrounding the violence. I like to follow the work of many directors so I made a mental note to see the film when it came out. But then I decided to read the book first. It reads as if it was made for the screen."
"Fascinating and completely absorbing book. I found my way to this through an old memory. 6-7 years ago I lived in a different part of town, and I remember my housemate at the time reading this. He would walk into the room at times and recount some of what he had read, and it stayed with me that long I had to search it out and read it myself."
"Here's a book I started years and years ago but never finished. So many moments were familiar. But I decided to take this with me on the plane when visiting friends in Malaysia a month or so back. My copy was so old it literally fell apart in my hands. I bought myself a new copy while in KL to finish it off."
"Spanish Civil War... the almost revolution, suppressed by those with their interests to look out for! I'm a slight history buff, if one can be so... slight, and a buff? Orwell's account of all this, when considering how close to the beginning of WWII it is, helps build a bigger picture for me as I slowly gather my understanding."
"I'm a massive fan of Hesse. Demian is one of my favourite books. This is the book I first took with me on my overseas travel last year, and got a 1/4 of the way through it before I bought Pynchon's Inherent Vice. Long passed due to wrap it up."
"This may have been the book that stumped me years ago and slowed the reading craze down... I found it a little slow going and "grey", but in the last 100 pages it has gained some momentum, and even thrown in a few laughs."