Prospect Park West

So I'm reading this book called Prospect Park West. It's about a bunch of unsatisfied mom's in Park Slope. I was thinking it would be satirical look at the neighborhood because really it could use a good laugh but no, it's not. These are the most pathetic women I have ever read. They are not even a bit sympathetic. If one thing that it does do right is depict what many of the people who live in Park Slope are like. Self-centered, egotistical and entitled but other then that it's not worth the read. It makes me sad. If you ever feel the need to see what my customers are like. Just read a chapter and you'll get the gist.

Stuff Melissa Read/Sort-of Read/Bought/Acquired

Well, as usual I have evidence that I have a serious shopping problem.
Books purchased:
The Devil's Dictionary by Ambrose Bierce
The Film Club by David Gilmour
Vanessa and Virginia by Susan Sellers
The Angel's Game by Carols Ruiz Zafon
Over Sea, Under Stone by Susan Cooper
Elsewhere by Gabrielle Zevin
The Mysterious Benedict Society by Trenton Lee Stewart
Books purchased in the 50% clearance sale:
Under Western Eyes by Joseph Conrad
Crome Yellow by Aldous Huxley
The Damnation of Theron Ware by Harold Frederic
The Enormous Room by e.e. cummings
The Master of Ballantrae by Robert Louis Stevenson
The Knight of Maison-Rouge by Alexandre Dumas
The White Company and Sir Nigel by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
The Darling by Russell Banks
On Grief and Reason by Joseph Brodsky
Books received from publishers and the BN editors:
Of Bees and Mist by Erick Setiawan
The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson
The Pickup by Nadine Gordimer
And no, I haven't read even close to this many books.

Operation Feel Good: Month 1

Posted here because Kate told me to and I do what Kate tells me to do.  I know my place!

All right, here's my super-cool book project.  It's called Operation Feel Good About Going to the Library Again but (of course) I will call it Operation Feel Good for short because that makes it sound mysterious and racy.  It involves using the 30+ reading guides I've obsessively bought over the years and the huge stacks of books that I own but haven't read.  So each month I will pick a reading guide and pile up the books that I own that are in the book and try to make my way through them.  Some months (like this one) I'll have too many books to finish so the extra will go back into the stacks while some months I'll find that I don't own that many of the recommended and I'll be free to read those books I own that I'm sure won't be in any guide (Christopher Pike and trashy romance novels).

Sound good?  TLDR?  Yeah.  In any event this month I'll be reading books recommended by the Bloomsbury Good Read Guide:  100 Must-Read Classic Novels.

Wives and Daughters, Elizabeth Gaskell
Middlemarch, George Eliot
Wuthering Heights, Emily Bronte
My Antonia, Willa Cather
Death Comes for the Archbishop, Willa Cather
Oliver Twist, Charles Dickens
Notes from the Underground, Fyodor Dostoevsky
The Three Musketeers, Alexandre Dumas
A Room with a View, E.M. Forster
Lady Chatterley's Lover, D.H. Lawrence
A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man, James Joyce
Dubliners, James Joyce
The Metamorphosis and Other Stories, Franz Kafka
East of Eden, John Steinbeck
Candide, Voltaire
Vanity Fair, William Makepeace Thackeray
The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, Mark Twain
The Way We Live Now, Anthony Trollop

Now obviously I won't read all of these in a month (honestly I'll be impressed if I get to the second Cather book) but I'll read what I can and at the end of the month I'll talk about the books I did read and critique this particular guide.  

What I'm reading

So lately I have been reading alot of ARC.  I think of one of the advantages of working in a store in New York is that publishers send a lot of ARC or they sent just as many to IC but the managers grab most of them before they hit the table, which I know they do.  Anyway, we get a lot of ARC's.  Most ot the books I have read, I would probably never pick up on my own, especially if I had to buy it but it's free so I gave them a chance.  The first one was so uninteresting that I don't even remember the title and have no idea if it's even out yet.  The secone one was an historical fiction about a Priest Artist and an nun he married.  I think it was called the "The Miracles of Prato".  It was ok but a little dry.  I do however wouldn't mind going to Italy to see the famous frescos mentioned in the book.  I just finished an ARC for "Resistance" by Owen Sheers.  It is an alternative history novel.  It takes place in WW2 but in this history the Germans succeeded in invading Great Britain and are winning the the war.  The story revolves around a group of Welsh farmers that live in a valley and awake one morning to find all of their husbands had left them to join the resistance.  They are now left to run all of their farms and hope their husbands come back.  In the meantime, a group of German soldiers come to their valley on a secret mission and get stuck their when a harsh winter basically snows them in.  They both realize that if they are going to survive they are going to have to work together.  It started out pretty dry but got better as it went on.  So far it was the best ARC I have read.  Now I am reading "The Strain" by Guillermo Del Toro and Chuck Hogan.  Yes, the same Guillermo Del Toro of Pan's Labrynth and Hellboy fame.  I love him.  I just started yesterday so I'm not too far in but so far I am intrigued.  It's about a vampire invasion and it's a first book of a triliogy so I'll more to look forward to when I'm done.  I'm super excited ot read more of it. 

So that's what I am reading.  What are you reading?

Stuff Melissa's Trying to Read

Books Bought:
Sex with the Queen by Eleanor Herman
The Hapsburgs by Andrew Wheatcroft
Three Bags Full by Leonie Swann
A Power Governments Cannot Contain by Howard Zinn
The End of Poverty by Jeffrey Sachs
The Finish Rich Dictionary by David Bach
The Superfoods Rx Diet
Drood by Dan Simmons
Rabbit Run by John Updike
Kristin Lavransdattir by Sigrid Undsett

Books Received:
Sag Harbor by Colson Whitehead (ARC for BNBC First Look)

Books Read:
Sex with the Queen
The Hapsburgs
Silas Marner
Three Bags Full
Harry: A History

Books I'm working on:
Mistress of the Monarchy
Shakespeare: The Invention of the Human
Death Comes for the Archbishop
The Mysteries of Udolpho
The Post-American World
The Shock Doctrine
Sag Harbor
A Fortunate Age
(the last First Look book - all the characters are so whiny I hate them all)

*caveat: this is only the books I remember; I'm sure there are more that I can't remember

I think Paul McD would be a good addition :)

Stuff I've Been Reading

Stuff I've bought:

Endless pages of academic articles from the campus copier
Three Bags Full

Stuff I've Read:
The first 20 pages of Three Bags Full (I'm loving it so far!)
A few chapters in The Sag, Wasow and Bender 2004 text book on Syntactic Theory
Ameka and Levinson 2007
Buring 2000
Foley 1997, Chapter 6
Casagrande and Hale 1967 (I had to present this)
Jackendoff 1983 chapter 9
A bunch of stuff on logic and semantic priming and mental models and sentence processing and visual word recognition and spoken word recognition

Hey, another month, another installment of Stuff I've been Reading. I think that you might have noticed that I seem to be a might busy with school work. Its crazy. I like it, I'm not complaining. Its just midterms are next week so everyone is incredibly stressed out. Including me. I've got some more reading to do this evening, but right now I'm watching Rome and destressing a little.

In the stuff in the list above, I just quickly want to mention the Casagrande and Hale. It was on the Semantic Relationships found in folk definitions of the Native American language 'o'odam. ( the ' is a glottal stop. Also, it may be spelled wrong.) This article was incredibly brief, really just a sketch but incredibly interesting. I enjoyed it. They analzyed a bunch of definitions for common things and described the different kinds of relationships used to make up the definitions. Really interesting, I think.

Foley, chapter 6 was also interesting. It was on a typology on family relationships in the world's languages.

I've also been reading a bunch of interesting stuff about sentence processing and formulaic language. Loves it.

So, consider this one of those things on facebook. Tag, You're it! What have you been reading.

Also, would anyone mind if I emailed Paul McD. and invite him to join our little online group?

Three Bags Full - done!

I finished TBF this morning - I keep thinking "this is so cute" even though it got a little metaphysical at times (and morbidly funny).  I won't say more until I know others have finished (I have to lend my copy to Kat, too).

Also - I feel sort of dumb because I just realized that the numbered list of Dramatis Ovae in the front corresponds to the numbered sheep outlines on the front cover.  You would thnk that was obvious, but ... no.

Sheepy Names

Can I just say that I really love all the sheeps' names?  Especially Miss Maple, as the smart sheep who's determined to solve the murder. :)

I'm about half-way through the book right now.
  • Current Mood
    blah blah