Bout of Books 15: Sign-up Post

Bout of Books

It’s almost time for the next Bout of Books week-long read-a-thon.  This will be my fifth time participating, and I’m excited to jump-start 2016’s reading!  The BoB team always hosts great games, chats and giveaways all through the week, and the community is so open and supportive.  The fun starts January 4, 2016!

Here’s the official announcement:


 

The Bout of Books read-a-thon is organized by Amanda @ On a Book Bender and Kelly @ Reading the Paranormal. It is a week long read-a-thon that begins 12:01am Monday, January 4th and runs through Sunday, January 10th in whatever time zone you are in. Bout of Books is low-pressure. There are challenges, giveaways, and a grand prize, but all of these are completely optional. For all Bout of Books 15 information and updates, be sure to visit the Bout of Books blog. – From the Bout of Books team


 

To get involved, head to the official sign-up post.

I’ll have my base camp & goals up first thing on the 4th.  I’ve got a stack of books I’m itching to dive into!

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The Classics Club, Revisited

The Classics ClubMy original list for The Classics Club was posted on March 31, 2015, with a goal date of 2018.  However, as I’ve been away from blogging from almost a year and am just returning, I’ve decided to start fresh with a new list today, January 1, 2016, submit my updated list to The Classics Club, and set my new goal date to January 1, 2021.

In selecting my classics list, I have chosen a (largely arbitrary) 50-year cut-off age for each book’s original publication date, so each book on my list must be from 1966 or before.  I’m aiming to read and review (fully or briefly) 50 titles during that time span, but I’m listing more than 50 here, as I’m not yet certain which books I want to cut from my line-up.  I expect my list to morph a ridiculous number of times, as I can never leave well enough alone.

This is my current roster.  Please let me know if there are any here that you either love or loathe!

2016 reading note:  I have bolded the titles that I know, as of today, I will be reading in the coming year.

  1. Assis, Machado de – Epitaph of a Small Winner (1880)
  2. Balzac, Honoré de – Cousin Bette (1846)
  3. Barnes, Djuna – Nightwood (1936)
  4. Bennett, Arnold – The Old Wives’ Tale (1908)
  5. Brontë, Charlotte – Villette (1853)
  6. Brooks, Gwendolyn – Maud Martha (1953)
  7. Buck, Pearl S. – Living Reed (1963)
  8. Cabell, James Branch – Jurgen (1919)
  9. Camus, Albert – The Plague (1947)
  10. Carson, Rachel – Under the Sea Wind (1941)
  11. Cather, Willa – O Pioneers! (1913)
  12. Collins, Wilkie – The Woman in White (1860)
  13. Comyns, Barbara – Sisters by a River (1947)
  14. Dumas, Alexandre – The Black Tulip (1850)
  15. Durrell, Lawrence – Justine (The Alexandria Quartet #1) – 1957
  16. Eliot, George – Middlemarch (1872)
  17. Ellison, Ralph – Invisible Man (1952)
  18. Faulkner, William – As I Lay Dying (1930)
  19. Ferber, Edna – So Big (1924)
  20. Finney, Jack – The Body Snatchers (1955)
  21. Fothergill, Jessie – The First Violin (1877)
  22. Gaskell, Elizabeth – Cranford (1851)
  23. Gautier, Théophile – Mademoiselle de Maupin (1835)
  24. Gibbons, Stella – Cold Comfort Farm (1932)
  25. Grau, Shirley Ann- The Keepers of the House (1964)
  26. Graves, Robert – I, Claudius (1934)
  27. Highsmith, Patricia – Strangers on a Train (1958)
  28. Jackson, Shirley – Hangsaman (1951)
  29. Jackson, Shirley – The Bird’s Nest (1954)
  30. Jackson, Shirley – The Sundial (1958)
  31. Kafka, Franz – The Trial (1925)
  32. Kaye-Smith, Sheila – Joanna Godden (1921)
  33. Keun, Irmgard – The Artificial Silk Girl (1932)
  34. Laclos, Pierre Choderlos de – Dangerous Liaisons (1782)
  35. Laforet, Carmen – Nada (1944)
  36. Lagerlöf, Selma – The Saga of Gösta Berling (1891)
  37. Laxness, Halldór – Independent People (1934)
  38. Lee, C.Y. – The Flower Drum Song (1957)
  39. Lessing, Doris – The Golden Notebook (1962)
  40. Lewis, Sinclair – Elmer Gantry (1927)
  41. London, Jack – The Star Rover (1915)
  42. Mahfouz, Naguib – Cairo Modern (1945)
  43. Maurier, Daphne du – Rebecca (1938)
  44. McCullers, Carson – The Heart is a Lonely Hunter (1940)
  45. Murdoch, Iris – The Bell       (1958)
  46. Nabokov, Vladimir – Pale Fire (1962)
  47. Porter, Katherine Anne – Pale Horse, Pale Rider (3 novellas, 1939)
  48. Powell, Dawn – The Locusts Have No King (1948)
  49. Pushkin, Alexander – Eugene Onegin (1833)
  50. Rhys, Jean – Good Morning, Midnight (1939)
  51. Sabatini, Rafael – Scaramouche (1921)
  52. Sackville-West, Vita – All Passion Spent (1931)
  53. Salinger, J. D. – Franny and Zooey (1955 & 1957, together in 1961)
  54. Southworth, E.D.E.N. – The Hidden Hand (1859)
  55. Spark, Muriel – The Comforters (1957)
  56. Stone, Irving – Lust for Life (1934)
  57. Swift, Jonathan – Gulliver’s Travels (1726)
  58. Tanizaki, Jun’ichiro – Naomi (1924)
  59. Tanizaki, Jun’ichiro – The Makioka Sisters (1943)
  60. Undset, Sigrid – The Wreath (Kristin Lavransdatter #1) (1920)
  61. Vesaas, Tarjei – The Ice Palace (1963)
  62. Webb, Mary – Precious Bane (1924)
  63. West, Nathanael – Miss Lonelyhearts (1933)
  64. West, Rebecca – The Fountain Overflows (1956)
  65. Wilder, Thornton – The Ides of March (1948)
  66. Wodehouse, P. G. – The Code of the Woosters (1938)
  67. Woolf, Virginia – Orlando (1928)
  68. Xueqin, Cao – The Golden Days (The Story of the Stone #1) (1760)
  69. Yourcenar, Marguerite – Memoirs of Hadrian (1951)
  70. Zola, Émile – The Belly of Paris (1873)

Deal Me In 2016: Sign-up Post

DMI logo

As I re-start the heart of my ailing little blog, the first post I wanted to go live for 2016 is my sign-up post for the coming year’s version of one of the most rewarding challenges I’ve participated in in the past:  The Deal Me In Short Story Reading Challenge, hosted as always by Jay at Bibliophilopolis.  I discovered so many wonderful new-to-me authors through this challenge in previous years, and the story-loving bloggers who participate are simply great folks.  So I’m ready to jump in from the top this year!

I’m going to go for a full deck of 52 stories, although I may not discuss them on a regular schedule.  If I don’t get a post up each week, I’ll bundle them every other week or so.

This year, I will be reading Korean short stories in English translation, selections from the gargantuan (as in “put on a weight belt to lift safely”) collection of weird fiction titled, appropriately, The Weird, and a bunch of contemporary authors I’ve been wanting to read something by but have simply never gotten around to doing so.

Here’s my roster, which I will be be tracking on its own page at the top of the blog:


SPADES – stories from The Weird, edited by Jeff VanderMeer and Ann VanderMeer, part 1:
A. Casting the Runes – M. R. James (1911)
2. The Hell Screen – Ryunosuke Akutagawa (1918)
3. White Rabbits – Leonora Carrington (1941)
4. The Crowd – Ray Bradbury (1943)
5. The Summer People – Shirley Jackson (1950)
6. Axolotl – Julio Cortázar (1956)
7. My Mother – Jamaica Kincaid (1978)
8. The New Rays – M. John Harrison (1982)
9. Bloodchild – Octavia E. Butler (1984)
10. The Boy in the Tree – Elizabeth Hand (1989)
J. Family – Joyce Carol Oates (1989)
Q. The End of the Garden – Michael Ajvaz (1991)
K. The Dark – Karen Joy Fowler (1991)

HEARTS – more stories from The Weird, part 2:
A. The Ice Man – Haruki Murakami (1991)
2. The Snow Pavilion – Angela Carter (1995)
3. Details – China Miéville (2001)
4. The Genius of Assassins – Michael Cisco (2002)
5. Feeders and Eaters – Neal Gaiman (2002)
6. The Cage – Jeff VanderMeer (2002)
7. The Beautiful Gelreesh – Jeffrey Ford
8. The Town Manager -Thomas Ligotti (2001)
9. Flat Diane – Daniel Abraham (2004)
10. Singing My Sister Down – Margo Lanagan (2005)
J. The Forrest – Laird Barron (2007)
Q. Dust Enforcer – Reza Negarestani (2008)
K. Saving the Gleeful Horse – K. J. Bishop (2010)

CLUBSstories from Korean Literature in Translation’s “All Modern Korean Literature in Translation Online” Project:
A. Cho Se-hui – Knifeblade
2. Cho Se-hui – City of Machines
3. Ch’oe Yun – The Flower with Thirteen Fragrances
4. Kim Young-ha – The Man Who Sold His Shadow
5. Kim Young-ha – The Suit
6. Lee Mun-yol – The Old Hatter
7. Lee Mun-yol – Winter That Year
8. Oh Jung-hee – Evening Game
9. Oh Jung-hee – Garden of My Childhood
10. Park Wan-so – Butterfly Illusion
J. Park Wan-so – Dried Flowers
Q. Shin Kyung-sook – The Vacant House on the Plain
K. Yi Sang – Phantom Illusion

DIAMONDS – stories highlighted in the online archives of Electric Literature’s Recommended Reading by authors I’ve heard of and/or shelved but have never read anything by:
A. Mack! – Colin Winnette
2. The Swan as Metaphor for Love – Amelia Gray
3. Secret Stream – Héctor Tobar
4. The Sacred Family – Rachel Kushner
5. The Bodyguard – Tom Cho
6. Athena Magazine – César Aira
7. Of the Fountain – Kathleen Winter
8. Where We Must Be – Laura Van den Berg
9. The Unbitten Elbow – Sigizmund Krzhizhanovsky
10. Girl and Giraffe – Lydia Millet
J. The Doctor and the Rabbi – Aimee Bender
Q. Bettering Myself – Ottessa Moshfegh
K. Recovery – Helen DeWitt

 

Read the Gamut Will Be Back Next Week

I’m planning on re-launching on January 1st, 2016.  I’m in the process of overhauling some things at the moment and getting myself back in a blogging groove (and re-acquainting myself with WordPress.)

I’ll be posting some general goals for 2016, as well as sign-up posts at that time for a challenge or two and the Bout of Books Read-a-Thon that starts January 4th.  I’ll also be making the rounds to visit everyone’s blogs during the first week of the year, and I look forward to catching up with you all very soon!

On Hiatus

As is probably obvious, this blog is on (unintentional) hiatus, due to both technical and health-related issues. I’ll be back as soon as I can and will try to play another round of catch-up before the next computer and/or body implosion.

Happy reading to all!