Saturday, January 9, 2010

Twilight, Fahrenheit 451 and a couple more challenges.

Twilight (Twilight, #1) Twilight by Stephenie Meyer

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Okay, I'm going to say up front, I couldn't put this down and read it over a 24hr period. All I can say is even though in many parts the writing and especially dialogue was so bad I had to groan I just had to know what was going to happen next, and yes, I am going to get my hands on the next book soon.

Fahrenheit 451 Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Wow, I loved this book. Wonderful story, great writing and characters and makes you think even after you've finished reading. Ticks the boxes for me in every way.

The main character is Guy Montag whose job is to burn books. Set in the future where a constant flow of noise and "entertainment" keep people occupied and prevent to much thought or even feeling, books are banned because they are the source of unhappiness. I can't help thinking how much more relevent this is today with the massive amount of noise and entertainment we subject our senses too. The trivial can so easily drown out the meaningful in our lives. in this world even the art of conversation is dying, people talk but not about anything important, they exist in a kind of half-life, lots of experience, very little meaning.

Guy Montag has his life turned upside down in an encounter with a young girl who sees and listens, who talks and thinks, who feels and soon he can no longer go along with the status quo and he risks everything for books, but it isn't about the books. I love this quote from Faber a retired English professor "Books were only one type of receptacle where we stored a lot of things we were afraid we might forget. There is nothing magical in them at all. The magic is only in what books say, how they stitched the patches of the universe together into one garment for us"

What's in a name Challenge

This is a fun and unique challenge. So here's how it works: Between January 1 and December 31, 2010, read one book in each of the following categories:

1. A book with a food in the title: Clockwork Orange, Grapes of Wrath, The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society
2. A book with a body of water in the title: A River Runs through It, Sense and Sensibility and Sea Monsters, The Lake House
3. A book with a title (queen, president) in the title: The Murder of King Tut, The Count of Monte Cristo, Lady Susan
4. A book with a plant in the title: A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, Wind in the Willows, The Name of the Rose
5. A book with a place name (city, country) in the title: Out of Africa; London; Between, Georgia
6. A book with a music term in the title: Song of Solomon, Ragtime, The Piano Teacher

The book titles are just suggestions, you can read whatever book you want to fit the category.

The Chunkster Challenge

Definition of a Chunkster:

  • A chunkster is 450 pages or more of ADULT literature (fiction or nonfiction) ... A chunkster should be a challenge.
  • If you read large type books your book will need to be 525 pages or more ... The average large type book is 10-15% longer or more so I think that was a fair estimate.
The Rules:
  • No Audio books in the chunkster. It just doesn't seem right. Words on paper for this one folks.
  • No e-Books allowed - we are reading traditional, fat books for this challenge.
  • Short Stories and Essay collections will not be counted.
  • Books may crossover with other challenges
  • Anyone may join. If you don't have a blog, just leave me a comment on this post with your progress (and to let me know you are playing)
  • You don't need to list your books ahead of time.
  • Once you pick a level, that's're committed to that level!
You must pick a level of participation (thanks again to Dana for the humor in these categories!):

  1. The Chubby Chunkster - this option is for the reader who has a couple of large tomes on their TBR list, but really doesn't want to commit to much more than that. 3 books is all you need to finish this challenge.
  2. Do These Books Make my Butt Look Big? - this option is for the slightly heavier reader who wants to commit to 4 Chunksters over the next twelve months.
  3. Mor-book-ly Obese - This is for the truly out of control chunkster. For this level of challenge you must commit to 6 or more chunksters OR three tomes of 750 pages or more. You know you want to.....go on and give in to your cravings.

I'll go with Do these books make my butt look big.


Beth F said...

Welcome to the What's in a Name Challenge. So glad you decided to join.

Mousey said...

Fahrenheit 451 is one of my favourite books. We studied it at high school and its fascinating to see the parallels in Bradbury's fictional society to our current one.
Good luck with your challenges Mel :)