Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Bev's #bestreads2011

I don’t read many books, I admit it. When I come home at the end of the day my natural reflex is to change into comfy jammies and soak into the couch cushions watching tv. I think often about how much more intelligent I might be if I read more often and continuously buy books in hopes of rectifying this. I currently have… oh, at least twenty brand new books sitting and waiting patiently to be read. And so it is that my best reads list for 2011 is terribly short. All I can say is that I will be very consciously working on lengthening it for next year by reading at least the bulk of those previously mentioned patient books.

Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert
This book had the biggest impact on me of anything else that I read this year. It was so personally meaningful that I wrote a love letter- to the book- in the blank page between chapters. I was just so grateful to have found something I connected so deeply with. Both the story of this woman’s journey and the language she used to describe it were so significant to me that I’m incapable of listening to anyone complain about it. You should have heard how vehemently I defended the book when someone complained that they too could have a spiritual awakening if they were given a giant book advance and free reign to travel the world in search of themselves. It’s like an old friend that I can’t hear a negative thing about without jumping up to point out why I love it so.
Read the full review of Eat, Pray, Love

Bloodsucking Fiends by Christopher Moore
I bought this book for one simple, terribly shallow reason: I love vampires. And love stories about vampires? I’m on that like white on rice! (Save for Twilight- yeck!) But when I took it home and started reading I was surprised to find that in addition to it being a truly delightful story it was written by a man who has quickly become one of my favorite authors. There aren’t many authors like Christopher Moore out there- authors who use fantasy as a source for terribly humorous situations who also have the ability to make really endearing characters with very few words. What impresses me most about him is not only how terribly familiar the character quirks of his main characters are, but how he can make a minor character seem just as familiar and then pass them by like someone you’d see on the street. He can introduce, pull the plot point out of, and then dismiss a character within the space of a paragraph and make you feel like they’re just as fleshed out and real as the characters you follow throughout the whole story. I am a true Moore fan because of this book and that list I mentioned earlier has several of his tomes on it that I’m looking forward to reading- not the least of which are the two sequels to this story. ^_^

Crossed written by Garth Ennis and drawn by Jacen Burrows
I read this because my boyfriend highly recommended it to me. Every time he’d turn the page I’d hear him exclaim and then excitedly tell me what horrifc situation had been drawn. I’d heard so much about it before I even picked it up that I had no other choice but to read it. And I’m so glad I did. Not because the story was so life-changingly awesome but simply because it reintroduced me to a genre that I somehow lost sight of over the years: the graphic novel. There’s something about the format that is so brilliant it can’t be copied in any other form of media. The way that scenes unfold square by square, the short, clipped sentences that speak volumes, the way the characters are made fuller through subtle actions. I rediscovered a love of the genre because of this book, because it does all of that masterfully. The full two page spreads are also horrifically impressive and tend to sear themselves onto your brain like nothing else.
I just received the first three volumes of Neil Gaiman’s Sandman series for Christmas (which I’ve read so many positive reviews about that my expecations are pretty damned high going into it) and I can’t wait to read them. And I bought my boyfriend the sequel to this first book of the Crossed universe. Needless to say, I’ll be reading it after him.
Read the full review of Crossed

5 comments:

  1. So Eat Pray Love was really that good, huh? I've had it on my radar for a while, but was skeptical about whether it would be that good.

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  2. I really ought to read Eat, Pray, Love already. I've had a copy for two or three years now. Gilbert's TED Talk is my all-time favorite; I never even gave her a chance before it, but the lady has some excellent things to share.

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  3. I really liked Bloodsucking Fiends! The book was funny.

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  4. I've only read one of Christopher Moore's books, but he's an incredible talent. I'll have to add this one to the list.

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  5. It was that good for me because of where I was in my life when I read it, I don't know if it will translate as magically when you're just picking it up out of curiosity. I'd like to think that the language is good enough and her style of discussion is interesting enough that you'll enjoy on at least some level, though. needless to say, I recommend it.

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Thank you for your comment! I will love it and hug it and pet it and call it George. Or, you know, just read and reply to it. But still- you rock!