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50 Book Challenge 2015 Part 2

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Southeastdweller Thu 05-Feb-15 06:48:13

Thread two of the 50 Book Challenge for this year.

The idea is to read 50 books (or more!) in 2015.

Previous thread here

iamdivergent Thu 05-Feb-15 07:00:58

checking in - still reading book 7 the book thief

antimatter Thu 05-Feb-15 07:15:21

Listening to my book no.6 this year - The Dark Road by Ma Jian.
After listening to Red Dust by the same author I wanted to get read more of his books. The only other on Audible was The Dark Road.

Feeling very, very upset by what is the main topic of this book and what was was (is still?) happening under the name One Child policy in China.

Book for not fainthearted. But very well written, not really a diary, I feel like I am listening to a Chinese peasant woman who although uneducated is not stupid by all means and is telling us story of her child bearing years.

mcsquigg Thu 05-Feb-15 08:43:29

No 5 - Defending Jacob. This is the story of a District Attorney investigating the murder of a teenager in his home town but discovers that the prime suspect is his own teenage son. It was an ok read, didn't grab me totally and I was glad to get it finished and move on.

MyIronLung Thu 05-Feb-15 09:16:43

Book 7: Ark by Stephen Baxter.

noddyholder Thu 05-Feb-15 09:27:41

Book 6 The book of lost and found Lucy Foley

Sootgremlin Thu 05-Feb-15 10:16:32

Checking in. Just picked up my Macfarlanes from the library smile

BsshBosh Thu 05-Feb-15 10:45:15

EleanorRugby I read Bone Clocks last year and loved it. Here's my review:

"Fifteen year old Holly runs away from home, a privileged Cambridge undergraduate leads a double life, a war correspondent is torn between family and work, an author is determined to take revenge on his harshest critic, a battle erupts between two species of immortals, a seventy-five year old Holly lives with her two orphaned grandchildren in a world devastated by climate change and human greed... Interweaving each story is a fantasy sub-plot (involving those immortals) that connects the characters together. The narrative stretches from 1984 to 2043 and travels between Britain, South & North America, Iceland, Australia, Shanghai, Ireland and Iraq.

"This was an exquisite, quite emotional read. Mitchell is a terrific storyteller and his prose is so detailed and well-written, you want to wallow in it. I was so deflated when the book ended as I wanted it to go on with more stories."

BsshBosh Thu 05-Feb-15 10:50:21

flowers for the new thread southeast.

I'm currently reading book 10, Linda Grant's Upstairs at the Party about student life in the early 1970s in Northern England. Really enjoying it so far. Loving the varied characters and their idealisms.

MollyMaDurga Thu 05-Feb-15 10:50:36

Eleanor I read it too, was not as impressed though. He explores the same themes as he did in Jacob de Zoet and Cloud Atlas but imho not as effectively. The story drags a bit, flounders here and there and is at times a bit boring. Parts of it though are great, and really show his mastery. Overall though, disappointing, because it is also so good in parts.

RemusLupinsBiggestGroupie Thu 05-Feb-15 11:00:09

Book 17 - 'Longbourn' by Jo Baker
I detested it. Mostly it was boring and, at times, it was absolutely bloody ridiculous (Mr Hill, for those who have read it, and Mr Bennet, and Wickham). I won't say any more, because I know lots of people liked it, but I thought it was almost as bad as, 'And the Mountains Echoed' which, as anybody who read the threads last year will probably remember, I thought was astonishingly awful.

Book 18 - 'The Man Who Was Thursday' by GK Chesterton
I picked this up at random in the library, because I half recognised the title, but knew nothing about it. It was very odd indeed. I enjoyed the chase across Europe and the inevitable unmaskings, but I thought the ending was dreadful. Has anybody read it? Would be very interested to know your thoughts, if so.

BsshBosh Thu 05-Feb-15 11:01:11

Molly that's interesting. I'd not read Cloud Atlas or de Zoet before Bone Clocks so I had nothing to compare it to. But others here who had read these previous works didn't rate Bone Clocks as highly as I did.

GetHappy Thu 05-Feb-15 11:02:33

feel really behind. have just finished reading number 2.
The Curious Incident of the dog in the night time

good book, has you lol in parts, definitely recommend. also, doing a theatre tour this year

Provencalroseparadox Thu 05-Feb-15 11:11:08

Haven't posted for a while so here's my current list:

1. Life by Keith Richards
Only for the musos. Oh so dull.

2. The Hobbit by JRR Tolkein
Decided to read after watching the last film. Enjoyed but, as suspected, the film takes a lot of liberties.

3. The King's Curse by Philippa Gregory
Really enjoyed this novel based on the life of Margaret Pole.

4. The Book of You by Claire Kendal
Easy read but still a disturbing book about a stalker. Enjoyed but it's very very creepy. Ending a bit naff.

5. The Constant Princess by Philippa Gregory
Tudored myself out with this one. Enjoyable but a bit silly, especially the clear nods to modern day thinking.

6. We Were Liars by E. Lockhart
Enjoyably typical YA novel. I didn't anticipate the twist but somehow it didn't shock me.

7. The Soul of Discretion by Susan Hill
Despite my carping about the Simon Serrailler series last year I really enjoyed this book. It's a horrible subject matter though - pedophilia and child abuse rings. The family stuff fascinates as always.

8. Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy by John Le Carre
Hadn't read this before and thoroughly enjoyed it, although I had worked out both the mole and the ending long before it happened. Would like to watch the Gary Oldman film now.

9. The Mime Order by Samantha Shannon
Sequel to The Bone Season which I really enjoyed. Yes it's yet another YA dystopian novel but it's fast-paced and I love the relationship between the heroine Paige and her ex-captor Warden. Very very enjoyable with a great ending. Looking forward to the rest of the series.

Just starting Polly Morland's Risk Wise: Nine Everyday Adventures which I am realy looking forward to as I loved her book on the nature of courage The Society of Timid Souls.

bibliomania Thu 05-Feb-15 11:14:30

Bssh, that's on my list too - I'm pretty familiar with the University she's talking about, although not in the same era.

Currently partway through three books:
- The Curse of Babylon by Richard Blake book (historical fiction: good violent fun)
- the Creation of Anne Boleyn by Susan Bolo (feminist cultural historian considers the way AB has been presented through the eras. Enjoying this - only a few pages in but she's put the boot into Starkey)
- Wild by Cheryl Strayed. Also enjoying it. I love a bit of backpacker misery.

Besides those I have another 13 books out of the library, and another couple of books I'd like to re-read. If only I didn't need to sleep or work, there would be some much reading time!

whippetwoman Thu 05-Feb-15 11:49:52

I went on a bit of a book-buying spree with some birthday money yesterday. I now have a zillion Kindle books to read.
I must not buy any more books!!

9. Alone in the Classroom - Elizabeth Hay

I enjoyed the high quality of the descriptive writing in this novel, it really was very impressive, but I found it lost focus a little bit towards the end. I'm not sure it quite knew what it wanted to be, a murder mystery (which is what it seems initially, a family history, which it ends up being or something else entirely. It's set in Canada (the author is Canadian) and starts with the murder of a young girl, but the novel jumps back and forth in time, concentrating on three women from a family. One, the narrator, who takes the novel into the present, her aunt, who is the main focus of the novel, and her mother. Definitely different and interesting, looking at the changing lives of women over the generations and the things that link them and shape them.

frogletsmum Thu 05-Feb-15 12:07:59

Checking in for new thread smile

6. The Miniaturist. 17 year old Nella is married off to an older man in 17th C Amsterdam, finds life in his house claustrophobic and full of mystery. She is given a perfect replica of the house as a wedding present and commissions objects to put in it from a mysterious miniaturist, but the objects seem to start foretelling tragic events. Found it an easy read, very strong on atmosphere and character. The title though is a bit misleading as the miniaturist remains on the edge of the story, more of a device to increase the tension as Nella's world starts to unravel. I also felt that the magic/supernatural elements to the story weren't really developed and didn't seem to fit comfortably with the realism of the world of rich Dutch merchants. Despite those niggles, I found it very enjoyable - would recommend.

bookwormbeagle (from previous thread) - I've got the same problem with Overdrive books from library. Can't see how to read them on a Kindle so am just reading on my phone. Anyone got any suggestions?

Thanks to this thread yesterday bought 3 for the Kindle: The Bone Clocks, All the Light we Cannot See, and Ammonites and Leaping Fish (memoir by Penelope Lively). Need more reading hours in the day.

Sootgremlin Thu 05-Feb-15 12:38:40

frogletsmum I can't work out overdrive on the kindle either, been reading it in browser on Ipad but find it a little unwieldy and slow to navigate compared to the Kindle app.

MyIronLung Thu 05-Feb-15 12:48:39

Can you not just side load them from a computer on to the kindle? I've not tried this yet as I have so many books to read already!

bookwormbeagle Thu 05-Feb-15 13:01:14

Hi Froglet and Gremlin smile

I've re-read the help pages on the overdrive website and have discovered that Kindle books are currently only available to borrow in the US.

You can search and select different libraries, worldwide, but can only borrow from them if you have a valid library card (I tried a random Californian one to see if there was a way round it! grin).

However there are literally thousands of ebooks in other formats that can be downloaded and read on your PC/smartphone (not sure re tablets) so it's still a fantastic service given that they are free after all.

bookwormbeagle Thu 05-Feb-15 13:04:24

Myiron, I've not tried that (am not skilled with computers) but as I've got a really early version of the kindle I don't have it linked to my laptop. Just buy on amazon and download by wifi.

If anybody works out how to do this though I'd be interested to know!

MollyMaDurga Thu 05-Feb-15 13:13:25

BsshBosh In that case you're in for a treat.. I take it you will read Cloud Atlas and Jacob de Zoet now?

I am so slowthis year, busy.. Started another non fiction yesterday to read beside by quite stodgy History of Scotland.
Dan Jones' the Plantagenets, narrative history and so far very good! Has anybody read him? I've got his next instalment - of the Tudors - as well, that will keep me busy for a while.

whippetwoman Thu 05-Feb-15 13:19:48

Ooops, that should be number 10. for Alone in the Classroom, not number 9!

I have a sleep-deprived brain atm.

I need to read Bring up the Bodies now but I keep putting it off. I'm not sure why.

ClashCityRocker Thu 05-Feb-15 13:29:56

Book 14 - To Kill A Mockingbird

I somehow managed to avoid this at school (did Lord Of The Flies instead) and picked it up with a feeling of 'well, this is something everyone says I ought to have read' expecting it to be, well, a bit dull.

I was entranced almost immediately. The Deep South mid-thirties setting is richly detailed and the characters are engaging. Harper Lee does an excellent job of narrating from a child's viewpoint as she struggles to make sense of the injustices of the world around her. I couldn't put this book down. It's one of those books I'll wish I could read for the first time again.

I've given up on Wolf Hall. It's bloody dull and I just can't get in to it.

Currently reading The Green Mile in the bath and The Book Thief on the kindle.

frogletsmum Thu 05-Feb-15 13:31:03

Myiron, thanks for the suggestion. Will give it a try.

Bookworm, my Kindle is pretty ancient too but I'm not sure if it makes a difference? I use the Kindle app on my phone quite a lot which works fine. Overdrive is fantastic, I only discovered it recently and was ridiculously excited about it blush

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