Yeah, I know it’s Wednesday when I’m posting this, but Thursday’s not so far off, and many of you will be reading this on Thursday, so it’s good enough. (The truth is I’m beat by a long day at work, so it’s a perfect day for a list post.)
A while back Danielle posted a list of books she’d wanted to read this year but hadn’t gotten to, and that’s what I propose to do for myself, create a list of this year’s “failures,” or, to be more positive about it, books I’m “saving” for next year. The first six books on the list are classics I’d hoped read this year but didn’t, and the later ones are challenge books I didn’t get to or simply ones I keep longing to read but can’t quite manage.
- Anne Bronte’s The Tenant of Wildfell Hall. I want to read more of the Brontes, Anne and the others. I’ve read Jane Eyre, Wuthering Heights, and Villette, but there are more Bronte novels than these, and as I love the 19C novel so much, I need to get to them.
- Virginia Woolf’s Night and Day. I read The Voyage Out, Woolf’s first novel, earlier this year, and Night and Day is her second one, and so a logical next step. Eventually I’d like to read everything she’s written.
- Gertrude Stein’s Three Lives. I’ve had this book on my shelves for ages. I’m fascinated and intrigued by Stein and want to read more of her work, and I think Three Lives is one of her more accessible books. Still, I keep putting it off.
- Balzac’s Cousin Bette. Another 19C novel I’d like to get to. I’ve read no Balzac, and I don’t think that’s a good thing!
- William James’s The Varieties of Religious Experience. I can’t decide if this is a book I’ll love or one I’ll be bored by, which perhaps explains my failure to read it thus far. I think I’ll like it, as everything I’ve heard about James intrigues me, and I like reading about religious subjects, but I’m not entirely sure. Perhaps next year …
- James Hogg’s Private Memoirs and Confessions of a Justified Sinner. Doesn’t the title sound so interesting? Or perhaps it’s just me that thinks so …
- I committed to Kate’s Reading Across Borders challenge and pledged to read five books for it, specifically, books in translation from countries outside Europe. I’ve managed to read four so far (So Long a Letter, Love in a Fallen City, Aunt Julia and the Scriptwriter, and Palace Walk), but I’m having trouble getting to the fifth. I do have a month left in this year, so there’s still a chance I can complete it. I’m thinking Jorge Luis Borges’s Labyrinths might be a good choice.
- I also hoped to read a science book this year, either Brian Greene’s Fabric of the Cosmos or Bill Bryson’s A Short History of Nearly Everything. My desire to read science varies, though, and I never got the urge right around the time I felt I could begin a new book, so it didn’t happen. I’m interested in science, but these books are big ones and will be large time commitment.
- I have a whole list of Janet Malcolm books I’d like to read. There’s her Reading Chekhov: A Critical Journey, or The Silent Woman: Sylvia Plath and Ted Hughes, or her latest one, Two Lives: Gertrude and Alice. I think Malcolm is an author I’d really like, if only I would actually pick up one of her books.
- I have never read a Margaret Atwood novel. This is a crying shame, I’m sure. I keep saying I’m going to do it …
- Samuel Beckett’s Molloy. I believe I listed this as a choice for the Reading from the Stacks challenge I participated in last winter, and it was the one book I didn’t get to. I still haven’t gotten to it, obviously.
- Any novel by Colette, although most likely Cheri or The Ripening Seed. I read a biography of her not too long ago and thought she was a fascinating person, but I’ve read very little of her own writing, except for My Mother’s House and Sido, which I thought a wonderful book.
- Boccaccio’s Decameron. Since I wrote yesterday about books with multiple stories and plots, I have this book on my mind, with its 100 stories. It’s another book I’m not sure if I’ll love or be bored by. No way to know but to give it a try, right?