Books Read

I can’t decide whether to make a list of books read for each year or just a huge master file. So I’ll just start with 2010 and see how easily bored I become with list making.

2011-12-31. Update

I decided to add to the list for 2011 rather than break it into two lists.

Books Read 2010

I should clarify to say that this is a list of books read for the first time in 2010–well, mostly. I love to reread books or just to step into the pages for a short visit with favorite characters. Sometimes I get involved in rereading entire long series of books. In some ways it’s as difficult to interest myself in a new book as it is to interest myself in a new person. Both require my concentration and energy, so they must be compelling in some way. If I reread the book from beginning to end, I included it; if I just dipped into it, I did not.

I felt that in 2010 I read comparatively few new books. When I list them all, my list is longer than I thought it would be. I’d already forgotten some of them! AJM bought an iPad this year and is now reading more light fiction as ebooks. I prefer bound paper books…but then I don’t read much light fiction.

  • 2010-01-01. Heat Wave. Not a great book but a very clever tie-in to Castle. I like the characters so can forgive much for a little fun.
  • 2010-01-09. My Life in France. Julia Child.
    Julia is an ESTJ, I think. I love how she attacks everything with gusto and is so straightforward and matter-of-fact. No apologies.
  • 2010-01-24. Un Lun Dun. China Mieville.
    Very slow in the first and second acts. More of an adult’s idea of what a children’s book should be than really a children’s book.
  • 2010-02-13. West from Home: Letters of Laura Ingalls Wilder, San Francisco 1915.
    I like reading books about places I’ve been–understand layout.
  • 2010-02-28. Where Angels Fear to Tread. E. M. Forster
    Would have appreciated the movie more had I read the book first. Like how the book expands my understanding.
  • 2010-04-01. Extra Virgin.
    (Reread for the umpteenth time.) I would like to find the sequel.
  • 2010-04-17. Predictably Irrational.
    DanAriely was my favorite speaker at #SXSWi 2010. This book on behavioral economics gave me a lot to think about.
  • 2010-05-07. Romancing Miss Bronte.
    A novel that wants to be a biography but has to imagine so much it can’t be called one.
  • 2010-05-30. Villette. Charlotte Bronte.
    (Reread) Didn’t engage me any more this reading than when I first read it 35 years ago. Really tried to pay attention this time, too.
  • 2010-06-11. The Nutmeg of Consolation.
    (Reread) The first book I read in the Aubrey/Maturin series but the second to last to acquire. One left to complete my set.
  • 2010-06-20. The Garden of Invention: Luther Burbank and the Business of Breeding Plants.
  • 2010-07-02. The Upside of Irrationality. Dan Ariely.
    I saw Dan Ariely at SXSWi 2010. Reading his books is just like talking with him. Insightful and interesting.
  • 2010-07-19. Totto-chan: The Little Girl at the Window. (Reread.)
  • 2010-07-28. Enchanted Temples of Taos: My Story of Rosario.
    In which I learn a lot about my mother’s side of the family.
  • 2010-08-23. The Secret Lives of Baba Segi’s Wives.
  • 2010-09-25. The Year of No Money in Tokyo.
    I was 1/3 of the way through before I discovered he wasn’t just another whiny white guy in Japan.
  • 2010-09-15. Selected Journals of L. M. Montgomery. Vol I.
  • 2010-09-30. Selected Journals of L. M. Montgomery. Vol II.
  • 2010-10-13. Selected Journals of L. M. Montgomery. Vol III.
  • 2010-10-28. Selected Journals of L. M. Montgomery. Vol IV.
  • 2010-11-24. The Ivington Diaries. Monty Don.
  • 2010-11-29. From My Grandmother’s Bedside.

Books Read in 2011

I will reiterate and say that this is a list of books read for the first time in 2011–well, mostly. If I reread the book from beginning to end, I included it; if I just dipped into it, I did not.

One of my resolutions for 2011 was to write something about every book I read. This started out well and then worked against me. Sometimes I hadn’t digested a book fully and hit a wall trying to write about it. As a result, I began to shy away from reading toward the end of 2011 because I was failing in my resolution. In the beginning of 2011, I had to move all our books around several times because we had the house painted. As a result, I got back into reading some science fiction and enjoyed it a lot.

  • 2011-01-21. Japanese Houses: Architecture and Interior.
    Mostly a picture book.
  • 2011-02-21. Shanghai Diary.
  • 2011-02-27. Old Man’s War.
  • 2011-02-28. The Ghost Brigades.
  • 2011-03-01. The Last Colony.
  • 2011-03-01. With Respect to the Japanese.
  • 2011-04-10. Beautiful Joe.
    I loved this book as a child. Possibly I read an abridged version. The original is disappointingly racist.
  • 2011-05-06. At Her Majesty’s Request: An African Princess in Victorian England.
  • 2011-05-??. Fuzzy Nation.
  • A Midwife’s Tale.
  • Shirley.
  • Vanity Fair.
  • Wild Swans.
  • 2011-11-??. Making Sense of Japanese: What the Textbooks Don’t Tell You
  • 2011-11-26. Balzac and the Little Chinese Seamstress.
    I found the movie more affecting.

I reread Wild Swans and Women of the Pleasure Quarters completely. Dabbled in Tales of Old Japan. Started but didn’t finish: The Morville Hours. Began and am still reading: The Silent Traveller in New York, A Little History of British Gardening; Retribution Falls.

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