Sunday, 6 March 2011

World Night and catching up

I was not a book giver for World Book Day but I was a book receiver. The lecturer from my book reading course was giving away Seamus Heaney's Selected Poetry which was a welcome surprise. I had a great time in front of the TV last night enjoying all the programmes dedicated to it. I fell like the BBC has really spoiled us with all the bookish programmes on lately, some of which I still need to catch up on.

This year so far has been a funny one with regards to my reading habits. I seem to be reading really really slowly and I haven't really brought any books since around January which was not intentional. The books I am selecting to read so far this year have tended to be either classics or if they are contemporary, quite hard going which require a slower reading pace. Am also getting into cooking and baking again so I have been checking out a lot of cookery books out of the library, I can do reviews on these?

These are the books I am currently reading and my progress with them. When I have finished these I think I am going to read a few light a fluffy reads to give my brain a rest.

War & Peace – according to my kindle I am exactly 50% of the way through. I no longer need to refer to my printed family tree as all the characters are firmly rooted in my brain. Its a novel that seems to get better as it goes on and is one I am really enjoying.

Gone with the Wind – I only have around 250 pages to go and boy is it enjoyable. I have to admit that I wasn't sure on this one to begin with but for me the novel turned a corner when the War started and now I can't put it down.

Jane Eyre – I started this yesterday and am reading this as part of a readalong hosted by sheistoofondofbooks and finished off chapter nine today. When I was younger I began to watch the film but I turned it off when she reached adulthood as I found it boring after that, I 'm hoping the book doesn't have the same fate!

I hope everyone else's year is going OK so far. I have some serious catch-up to do with regards to reviews so I best get my head down.

Posted by Jess


  1. I had to study Seamus Heaney at uni and while he will never be one of my faves his poems can very much be appreciated.

  2. Wow, that is some heavy reading for sure! And all at the same time too lol. Good on ya!

    I find comic books good after reading heavy classics. Gives my brain a rest :p

    Have a great week!

  3. What a great reading collection! I'm also reading W&P. Gone With the Wind and Jane Eyre are my favorite novels, and I'd LOVE a copy of Seamus Heaney's poetry; he's so innovative with lines.

    The first 100 or so pages of GWTW are pretty slow, for a first reader. BUT, once you've read the whole book, the contrast of those first 100, with all that's to come after them, adds to the book's brilliance, I think. Reading them, knowing everything else, makes them more meaningful.

    Mitchell wrote the last three chapters first, and the first chapter last. I find that intriguing. She was a reporter, so was a effect-to-cause thinker, rather than a cause-to-effect thinker. She wrote how it turned out, then sought to write how Scarlett got to that point.

    The 'beginning' is Scarlett as a shiny new penny, before the rusting.

  4. I love Jane Eyre and enjoyed W&P when I read it last year. It's a big step when you stop referring to the names of who's who in the front of the book!

  5. I loved Gone with the Wind so it is good to see that you are enjoying it. War and Peace is a book that scares me so I find your comments reassuring. I look forward to seeing what you think when you've finished it. hopefully you'll be able to persuade me to pick it up.

  6. Bookmarc - I will look at them at some point, I have to admit that I would have prefered a novel though!

    Toni - I know, I need a graphic novel or something for afterwards.

    Jillian - I think the first section was so kind of idealistic in a way. These people all swanning around having BBQs and being nice to their slaves, I did think eh I thought this was meant to be a bit more gritty. It soon proved to be however just that, perhaps I should reread the first chapter after finishing it.

    Stacy - yes I thought I was going to be forever holding that dam family tree, I am terrible with names in books normally let along something like W&P!

    Jackie - its a long read but it isn't a slog if that makes sense. It kind of becomes a page turner the more you read but either way I will feel like Ive conquered a mountain when I'm finished!

  7. I've been a bit suspicious as to all the BBC book programs lately - there's been loads, but I'm not complaining.

    War & Peace is on my list. I've also been reading slowly lately, and so I've been avoiding heavier stuff and sticking to shorter works.

    I LOVE Jane Eyre. Hope you enjoy it. You should read Wide Sargasso Sea by Jean Rhyss when your done!


  8. I was a giver (Cloud Atlas) with my 10 year old daughter,and it was a great experience, but never met another giver, which was a shame.
    I love Seamus Heaney and it was one of my giver choices,as an alternative to the David Mitchell book, are you going to write a post on the poetry.

  9. 50% on W&P, great job! I hope you love Jane Eyer too.

  10. It is nice to cleanse your classical palate with easier reads here and there. Just finished a YA one that does just that -- will try to post about it this weekend, Keturah and Lord Death.
    Jane Eyre is a favorite of mine (looking forward to the new movie) and I do so want to read Gone with the Wind.

  11. Fantastic selections - tough reads I'd imagine though! I'd be reading slow too:) I loved Jane Eyre - I think I need to pick up some of the classics again myself...thanks so much for sharing.

  12. Very impressive reading list... I've also been reading slowly recently and am a bit behind on reviews.

    What I like so much about the reviews on Park Benches & Bookends is that they are always readable, brief and to the point, but obviously well thought out and critical. And you read great stuff! Keep it up!

  13. Little Interpretations - I think the kindle has made the BBC think theres some sort of reading craze hense the programmes. who knows maybe their right?

    parrish lantern - I'm not a great reader of poetry so although I will read them I dont think I'm wualified to talk about them on the blog.

    Avid Reader - I feel I should celebrate when I finally finish it LOL

    Georgia Girls - I had better love Jane Eyre as I think I wont be popular if I dont LOL

    Cathy - no problem ;) I am craving newer fiction now though but its great to read classics.

    Marieke - thats very kind of you, thank you!