Tiptoeing on the line between 2008 and 2009, I’m tempted to reflect on the past twelve months as I would normally do. But this year, all I want to do is look ahead. There are so many things awaiting me, not only in terms of books, but in life as well (although I suppose literature and life are somewhat deeply intertwined).
Haven’t gotten round to gathering my thoughts on the books that I’ve finished reading. over the past few days. Carried a few loose sheets of paper with me, and scribbled haphazard notes as I went, but they’re not anything coherent. Will probably get around to posting final thoughts in early 2009, as I want to relax and spend time with friends/family before the new year comes.
I’ve got some delicious books in my immediate to-read list. There’s a Tolstoy, a Hemmingway and an Eliot, amongst others (which I’ve mentioned on this blog before). On Boxing Day, I managed to add another book to my to-read list. We passed through Port Apollo for lunch, and whilst strolling down the street, I glimpsed a copy of Nobel Prize winner, Gao Xingjian’s, Soul Mountain at a newagent’s – and I snapped it up immediately. As soon as I finish Tess of the D’Urbervilles, I’ll try to make progress on The Canterbury Tales. And tomorrow, tossing all my other TBR books aside, I’ll begin Anna Karenina, as planned. Then there’s A Fraction of the Whole, and Alias Grace, both of which I’m looking forward to reading.
I’d love to talk about my holiday, but I’ve decided to keep this blog and my regular blog separate entities, so I’ll finish off with a list of the best books I read this year. I was going to choose one, but it was much too hard. So, without further ado, my favourite books of 2008:
- Mrs Dalloway, Virginia Woolf: fresh, lyrical prose and ingenious use of stream-of-consciousness. My first Woolf.
- Possession, A S Byatt: intricate and well-paced plot, beautiful writing, marvellous characterisation. The level of verisimilitude is astounding.
- Les Miserables, Victor Hugo: a book of mammoth proportions; very touching portrayal of human nature.
- A Suitable Boy, Vikram Seth: thick slice of life novel, Austenian, insight into Indian culture. Extremely well-paced considering length.
If anyone can be bothered, I’d be interested in hearing what your favourite books of 2008 were. Although I’ve got plenty on my to-read list, I’m always willing to add a few more to the evergrowing pile.
P.S – I just decided to join Eva’s ‘World Citizen’ challenge, which will go perfectly with what I’m studying at uni next year. See ‘Reading Projects’ page for full list of titles.