Month in Review

June and July in Review

Smileys For BlogThis is my first “month in review” post of the year. I really need to get back to doing these at the end of each month.

Books Read in June and July

Yvain ou le Chevalier au Lion (Yvain, the Knight of the Lion) by ChrΓ©tien de Troyes – πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

The Once and Future King by T.H. White – πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ (I will be doing a review of this book soon)

Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, Pearl, and Sir Orfeo by J.R.R. Tolkien – πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

Ginger Pye by Eleanor Estes – πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

Locomotive by Brian Floca (Illustration samples are below. This is the most fantastic picture book I think I’ve ever read. If you are a train enthusiast or want to prove to your scoffing friend that children’s literature is art, check out/buy this book.)Β Β – πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

Β 

Reading Plans For August

Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel (I’m currently half way through it)

The Book of Unknown Americans by Cristina Henriquez

The Secret History by Donna Tartt (for a buddy-read with Masanobu @ All the Pretty Books; we’re beginning August 19)

Praise of Folly by Erasmus

I doubt I’ll get through all of these, but this is what I’m hoping to read in the next month or so.

Month in Review

November in Review

Smileys For BlogThis was definitely a slow reading month for me. I only completedΒ and reviewed two books:

Death Comes for the Archbishop by Willa Cather – πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

Julie of the Wolves by Jean Craighead George – πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

 

December Reading Plans

This portion of my “Month in Review” posts are always a joke. I hardly every get to the books I plan to read. I blame Kierkegaard. πŸ˜›

Anyway, here are the books I sincerely think I will finish and reviewΒ in December:

Commonplace by Christina Rossetti (An obscure novella by a well-known poet)

La NausΓ©e (The Nausea) by Jean-Paul Sartre

The Once and Future King by T.H. White (It’s about time I finished it.)

 

Month in Review

October in Review

Smileys For BlogAs you know, last month, I departed considerably from my October TBR. But although I did not read any Halloweed-themed works, I am happy with the books I read. Without further ado, here’s what I read:

The Neverending Story by Michael Ende – πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

Baby by Patricia Machlachlan – πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ (A beautiful but heartrending book. If you have ever experienced the death of a child I warn you that this may be unbearably painful to read.)

Life Together by Dietrich Bonhoeffer – πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

Practice in Christianity by Anti-Climacus (pseudonym of Soren Kierkegaard) – πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

I Believe in the Holy Spirit, Vol II by Yves Congar- πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

Hard Times by Charles Dickens – πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

Note #1: If you are interested in reading my reactions to the Christian works I read, feel free to follow me on Goodreads. I do not review them on this blog but I do try to write a full review of each book on Goodreads.

Note #2: I sometimesΒ give 5 star reviews for books that I later decide should have received 4 stars. Therefore, smiley face ratings on this blog are not always consistent with my ratings on Goodreads. In general, if I give a book 4 or 5 stars/smiley faces, I highly recommend it. In contrast, I hardly ever change my mind about 2 or 3 star books.

November Plans

Death Comes for the Archbishop by Willa Cather (currently reading and loving)

La NausΓ©e by Jean-Paul Sartre

Dietrich Bonhoeffer: A Biography by Eberhard Bethge (It’s massive, so I doubt I will finish it in November).

Perelandra by C.S. Lewis (I should have read this one last month for the Dead Writer’s Society, but I didn’t.)

To the Lighthouse by Virginia Woolf

 

Month in Review

September in Review

Smileys For BlogSeptember Reads

In September I read 6 books. Two of them were in French. I have plans to read at least one French work each month.

Mere Christianity by C.S. LewisΒ (a reread)- πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

A Wizard of Earthsea by Ursula K. Le Guin (Book 1 of the Earthsea Cycle; I will review this book if I decide to continue with the series) – πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

L’Annonce Faite A MarieΒ (The Annunciation to Mary) by Paul Claudel – πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson (I will try to review this soon) – πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

Courrier SudΒ (Southern Mail) by Antoine de Saint-ExupΓ©ry – πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

The Neverending Story by Michael Ende (Fantastic! Review is forthcoming) – πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

 

Plans For October

Baby by Sarah McLachlan

The Final Empire by Brandon Sanderson (Book 1 of the Mistborn trilogy; it will probably take me a couple of months to read.)

Jacob’s Room by Virginia Woolf

Some short stories by Edgar Allan Poe and Roald Dahl in honor of Halloween (which I actually don’t care much about. I just like creepy stories.)

Le Morte D’Arthur by Sir Thomas Mallory (for a read-along hosted by Jean @ Howling Frog Books. The read-along ends mid-December, so I have time).

Julie of the Wolves by Jean Craighead George (for the Newbery Medal Challenge)

Vol de Nuit (Night Flight) by Antoine de Saint-ExupΓ©ry

Notice how my reading plans change from month to month even though I don’t normally read all (or sometimes any) of the books I have planned. Any TBR I post is extremely tentative. It’s definitely not binding. It’sΒ merely a reminder that I either own or have borrowed books I have yet to read. I am alsoΒ saying that there are certain books that I am currently excited to read.

Month in Review

August in Review

Smileys For BlogThis has been a very different reading month from the ones preceding it. Most of the books and essays I read were by one author: J.R.R. Tolkien. Although I read The Lord of the Rings a few years ago, I have only just discovered his genius. I love how Tolkien wove medieval myths and legends into his fantasy works. His research as a professor appeals to me because my research interest as an undergraduate was medieval French hagiography, particularly miracle and passion plays. I also did an internship with a couple professors who were studying the lives of Saints Barlaam and Josaphat. The story of Saint Josaphat was a Christian version of the story of the Buddha. I became fascinated by the proliferation of certain parables and myths during the Middle Ages. For example, there is a parable in the Barlaam and Josaphat stories that was well-known throughout the 13th and 14th centuries and was includedΒ in plenty of different stories. I often hear people say that Tolkien’s fantasy worksΒ were completely original, and later fantasy writers just copied him. They say this because they are ignorant of the older myths that influenced The Lord of the Rings. I don’t think good fantasy is ever completely original. That, I believe, is it’s strength. In the coming week I will explain further what I mean. Suffice it to say that Tolkien’s writing has captured my intellect and imagination. He was a myth-maker, and I won’t quit until I have read everything he wrote about Middle-Earth and the history of the NΓΊmenΓ³reans. There may be quite a few posts about J.R.R. Tolkien’s essays and stories in the coming months.

Here is a list of theΒ books I read in August.

On Fairy Stories by J.R.R. Tolkien – πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

A Grief Observed by C.S. Lewis (A rating of this book is not appropriate.)

The Murder of Roger Ackroyd by Agatha Christie – πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

A Man for All Seasons by Robert Bolt Β – πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

Beowulf: The Monsters and the Critics by J.R.R. Tolkien – πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

Two Towers by J.R.R. Tolkien (LOTR Vol. 2) Β – πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

The Return of the King by J.R.R. Tolkien (LOTR Vol. 3) – πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ (I didn’t want The Lord of the Rings to end)

Note: I will review The Lord of the Rings in one post but I may also makeΒ smaller reflection posts about the characters and themes in the trilogy, so stay tuned…

 

Books I Plan to Read in September

La Fortune des RougonΒ by Emile Zola (I gaveΒ up on Five Weeks in a Balloon by Jules Verne because it was boring and way too racist for my liking.)

The Silmarillion by J.R.R Tolkien (I’ve been told that this book is super dense, so I will have to read it very carefully.)

Trinity by Leon Uris (Not a classic. I borrowed this book from my father, and I’ve wanted to read it for the last few years.)

The Epic of GilgameshΒ 

 

Month in Review

July in Review

Smileys For BlogI read some spectacular books in July.

Books Read in July

The Cuckoo’s Calling by Robert Galbraith – πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

The Call of the Wild by Jack London – πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

Crispin: The Cross of Lead by Avi – πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

Moby-Dick; or, The Whale by Herman Melville – πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ (Hands down the greatest book I’ve read this year and definitely one of my favorite books of all time)

A Year Down Yonder by Richard Peck – πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

The Murder of Roger Ackroyd by Agatha Christie (Review is forthcoming) – πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

Away Off Shore: Nantucket Island and Its People, 1602-1890 by Nathaniel Philbrick (Review is forthcoming) – πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

A Man For All Seasons by Robert Bolt (Review is forthcoming) – πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

 

Reading Plans For August

In the Heart of the Sea: The Tragedy of the Whaleship Essex by Nathaniel Philbrick

Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel (for Modern Detour)

Cinq Semaines En BallonΒ (Five Weeks in a Balloon) by Jules Verne

The Once and Future King by T.H. White

The Odyssey by Homer (a reread)

Month in Review

June in Review

I read 6 books in June. My favorite read was The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien. I’m quite a bit behind in Moby-Dick, but I am confident that I will finish it by the end of July.Β Below is the complete list of books I read in June:

Girl With aΒ Pearl Earring by Tracy ChevalierΒ (read for Modern Detour but not yet reviewed)- πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien – πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

The Maltese Falcon by Dashiell Hammett – πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

Saint Joan by George Bernard Shaw – πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

The View from Saturday by E.L. Konigsburg – πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

Frankenstein by Mary Shelley – πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

 

So, what will I be reading in July? I posted last week that my summer will be adventure-themed. Therefore, there will be some books from that list on my July TBR.

Moby-Dick by Herman Melville (to finish for the read-along hosted by Adam @ Roof Beam Reader)

The Cuckoo’s Calling by Robert Galbraith (a.k.a. J.K. Rowling)

Cinq Semaines En BallonΒ (Five Weeks in a Balloon)Β by Jules Verne

A Man for All Seasons by Robert Bolt

A Year Down Yonder by Richard Peck

The Fellowship of the Ring by J.R.R. Tolkien (to finish for the read-along hosted by Robert @ 101 Books)

The Old Man and the SeaΒ by Ernest HemingwayΒ (for a JulyΒ read-along hosted by Hamlette @ The Edge of the Precipice)

Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson