Sunday Salon – A New Year Begins

I hope your holidays were filled with joy and that you and yours have a wonderful 2010.  I’ve noticed that many bloggers have come up with reading plans for the new year. I haven’t really set goals but, along with completing my challenges,  there are a few things I would like to accomplish over the next twelve months. 

1)  Read my own books.  I have somehow collected many piles of unread books having every intention to read them in a timely fashion.  It hasn’t happened, so I have a plan.  Because I usually read three or four books at a time one of the books I am reading at any given moment will be “random read” from my personal TBR piles. 

2) Reread classics and favorite books I read as a child and young adult.  I have compiled a list of  these books from other bloggers and added some of my own. 

3) Have the courage to write about books I have abandoned and my reasons for abandoning them. 

4) Read more  picture books, poetry and plays. 

This week I was lucky enough to pick up a copy of Wolf Hall at the library.  I am loving it, think it is one of the best books I have read in years, and am grumbling at not having discovered Hilary Mantel before now.  It is a long and complicated novel, yet it is a joy to read.  As yet I have not found one unnecessary word. 

How simple it would be, if he were allowed to reach down and shake some straight answers out of Norris.  But it’s not simple; this is what the world and the cardinal conspire to teach him.  Christ, he thinks, by my age I ought to know.  You don’t get on by being original.  You don’t get on by being bright.  You don’t get on by being strong.  You get on by being a subtle crook; somehow he thinks that’s what Norris is, and he feels an irrational dislike taking root, and he tries to dismiss it, because he prefers his dislikes rational, but after all, these circumstances are extreme, the cardinal in the mud, the humiliating tussle to get him back in the saddle, the talking, talking on the barge, and worse, the talking, talking on his knees, as if Wolsey’s unraveling, in a great unweaving of scarlet thread that might lead you back into a scarlet labyrinth, with a dying monster at its heart.  From page 49. 

Have a wonderful reading week and if you would like more information about Sunday Salon you can find it here.

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29 Comments

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29 responses to “Sunday Salon – A New Year Begins

  1. Wonderful goals! Happy new year!

  2. Lu

    For some reason no other mention of Wolf Hall has made me want to read it, but this one has! Can’t wait to know what you think when you finish :)

  3. I, also, love to read children’s book. I joined a great group last week that is attempting to read all the books in the new book 1001 Children’s Books You Must Read Before You Grow Up. We’re starting with The BFG. Join us if you would like to. Very low key.

    http://au.groups.yahoo.com/group/1001childrensbooksyoumustread/

  4. Eva

    I haven’t done a post on my reading goals, because I’m trying the less structured approach…but I have my goals in my head secretly, so I might end up posting about them anyway. ;) hehe

    Yours sound like a recipe for a wonderful reading year!

  5. A lot of bloggers have been resolving to read more books they already own. That’s definitely a great resolution for cutting down book clutter.

    I’ve got my Christmas haul to get through so that should keep me busy for awhile.

    • EL Fay – I will read more of my own books in 2010. Then I will sort and cull so I can fit all my books onto my bookshelves. Happy reading!

  6. I hear you Gavin. I could go at least a year without buying a single book, OR renting from the library. But I know how that goes! I’ll look forward to your discussion of Wolf Hall. I’m slightly intimidated…

  7. I’m a huge Mantel fan. If you are up for another doorstopper of a book by her, I highly recommend A Place of Greater Safety. Otherwise, I liked Fludd by her, too. I like pretty much anything by her (though I’ve only read three of her books). I hope 2010 goes well for you!

    • Aarti – Thanks for your comments! I have “A Place of Greater Safety” on my TBR list but will have to wait a bit, take a break from doorstoppers!

  8. I am glad you are enjoying Wolf Hall. I have a copy and am looking forward to reading it at some point. I wish you luck with your goals this year, Gavin! Have a great week.

  9. I agree with Lu, the excerpt from the book does make me want to pick up Wolf Hall! Good luck with all your goals.

  10. We share some common goals – in fact, I’ve seen many bloggers resolving to read their own books this year! I was surprised to discover that I didn’t have a single reread in 2009, but this year I will make time for some old favorites, too.

    I received Wolf Hall for Christmas, and returned the barely-started, non-renewable copy to the library. Look forward to spending some time with it this winter. Good luck with your plans.

  11. I like #3. I think I need to strive for its corollary: the courage to abandon books I’m not enjoying. It’s so rare that I do that, but it would save me a lot of time that could be put to better use (and better books).

    • Fyrefly – So true, there are too many good books out there to struggle through something you aren’t enjoying. I find the hardest books to let go are the ones I think I “should” be enjoying. I’ve decided to give up “should”!

      • Probably wise, but easier said than done, at least for me! I have the hardest time giving up books I paid real money for. If I mooched it, or got it for a dollar at the library sale, it’s not a big deal if I don’t finish, but if I actually bought it full price? I’m bound and determined to get my money’s worth.

  12. Ti

    I have a feeling Wolf Hall will end up on my book club list for this year. My one group chooses books this month, and the new group that I am starting chooses books in February for the entire year so chances are good ;)

  13. So many people are raving about Wolf Hall. I suppose I’ll be one of the Last People in the Universe to read it, but from what you say, it’s worth the wait!

    • Rhapsody – I think people either love or hate Wolf Hall. I am really loving it. Thanks for your comment and have a great week.

  14. Man, I REALLY want to read Wolf Hall, and your post was just one more log on the fire. This sudden desire overtook me a few weeks ago, even though I’d been reading reviews of it (obviously) for months before. I think I’m just in the exact right mood for pre-Elizabethan England right now. Or maybe I want some genuinely excitingly-written historical fiction, to make up for Undset. In any case, you’re tempting me!

  15. Emily – Between “The Children’s Book” and “Wolf Hall” I have completely cleared KL from my mind. I’ve never read Mantel before and really her novel is one of the best I’ve read in years. I can’t wait to see what my favorite bloggers think of it.

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