Can't resist a good challenge.

Thursday, December 31, 2009

Quick Guide Rehab for 2010

I'm working on a new format for my Quick Guide for 2010. Hopefully, it will be a little more useful and easier to update than the 2009 Guide.

More to come.

Sunday, December 27, 2009

The 42 (Sci-Fi) Challenge 2010

***Challenge ended. See my wrap-up post here.***

Dates: 1 January to 3 December 2010
Hosted by: Becky of Becky's Book Reviews

Guidelines:
  • Read, watch, or listen to (and possibly review) at least 42 science fiction items.
  • Keep an ongoing list of your items on the challenge blog or on your on website.
  • You can link to your reviews or not; and reviews are not required in order to participate.
See my wrap-up post here.
See my personal challenge blog here.
See the challenge announcement page here.
See the challenge blog here.
See my challenge blog posts here.

MY LIST:
  1. Avatar (2009; film)
  2. The Beast from 20,000 Fathoms (1953; film)
  3. Contact. Carl Sagan (1985; novel; 432 pages)
  4. Deja Vu (2006; film)
  5. Doctor Who (David Tennant): "Planet of the Ood" (2008; TV series)
  6. Doctor Who (David Tennant): "Partners in Crime" (2008; TV series)
  7. Eureka: "Founder's Day" (2010; TV series)
  8. Eureka: "A New World" (2010; TV series)
  9. Eureka: "All the Rage" (2010; TV series)
  10. Eureka: "Crossing Over" (2010; TV series)
  11. Eureka: "Momstrosity" (2010; TV series)
  12. Eureka: "Stoned" (2010; TV series)
  13. Eureka: "The Ex-Files" (2010; TV series)
  14. Eureka: "I'll Be Seeing You" (2010; TV series)
  15. Eureka: "O Little Town" (2010; TV series)
  16. Five Million Miles to Earth (1967; film)
  17. Forbidden Planet (1956; film)
  18. The Forgotten (2004; film)
  19. Operation Terror (1962; novel)
  20. Panic in Year Zero! (1962; film)
  21. Star Trek (2009; film)
  22. Star Trek: Generations (1994; film)
  23. Star Trek: The Next Generation: "Family" (1990; TV series)
  24. Star Trek: The Next Generation: "Future Imperfect" (1990; TV series)
  25. Star Trek: The Next Generation: "Reunion" (1990; TV series)
  26. Star Trek: The Next Generation: "I Borg" (1992; TV series)
  27. Star Trek: The Next Generation: "The Inner Light" (1992; TV series)
  28. Star Trek: The Next Generation: "Relics" (1992; TV series)
  29. Star Trek: The Next Generation: "Homeward" (1993; TV series)
  30. Star Trek: The Next Generation: "Sub Rosa" (1993-94; TV series)
  31. Star Trek: The Next Generation: "Emergence" (1994; TV series)
  32. Star Trek: The Next Generation: "Eye of the Beholder" (1994; TV series)
  33. Star Trek: The Next Generation: "Genesis" (1994; TV series)
  34. Star Trek: The Next Generation: "Journey's End" (1994; TV series)
  35. Space Cowboys (2000; film)
  36. The Island of Dr. Moreau. H.G. Wells (1895; novel; 245 pages)
  37. X the Unknown (1956; film)
  38. These Are the Damned (1962; film)

The Typically British Reading Challenge 2010

***Challenge completed. See my wrap-up post here.***

Dates:
1 January to 31 December 2010
Hosted by: Book Chick City

Guidelines:
  • The challenge is to read a set number of fiction books by British authors.
  • Challenge begins January 1, 2010. Anyone can join. You don't need a blog to participate.
  • You don't have to make a list of books to read - just choose as you go. Or, if you do make a list, it can be changed at any time.
  • Crossovers with other challenges are allowed.
  • There will be a place to link your reviews, but reviews aren't mandatory.
Levels of Participation:
  1. "Put the Kettle On" - Read 2 books
  2. "Gordon Bennett" - Read 4 books
  3. "Bob's Your Uncle" - Read 6 books
  4. "Cream Crackered" - Read 8 books

See my original post about the challenge here.
See my wrap-up post here.
See the challenge announcement page here.
See the challenge review page here.

I'm signing up for Level 4 ("Cream Crackered") - read 8 books.

MY READING LIST (subject to change):
  1. The Raphael Affair. Iain Pears [see review]
  2. The Island of Dr. Moreau. H.G. Wells [see review]
  3. The Brontes Went to Woolworths. Rachel Ferguson [see review]
  4. Heresy. S.J. Parris [Review to come]
  5. The Inheritance. Simon Tolkien [see review]
  6. Cards on the Table. Agatha Christie [see review]
  7. Animal Farm. George Orwell [Review to come]
  8. The Thirty-nine Steps. John Buchan [see review]

Other Possibilities:
According to Mark. Penelope Lively
Afternoon of a Good Woman. Nina Bawden
All Passion Spent. Vita Sackville-West
The Ballad of Peckham Rye. Muriel Spark
The Black Prince.
Iris Murdoch
The Camomile Lawn.
Mary Wesley
Circles of Deceit. Nina Bawden
The Comforters.
Muriel Spark
Consequences.
Penelope Lively
The Driver's Seat. Muriel Spark
Family Album. Penelope Lively
Family Money. Nina Bawden
The Finishing School. Muriel Spark
The Go-Between. L.P. Hartley
The Heat of the Day. Elizabeth Bowen
Heat Wave. Penelope Lively
Judgment Day. Penelope Lively
Jumping the Queue. Mary Wesley
The Mandelbaum Gate. Muriel Spark
The Moonstone. Wilkie Collins
Mrs. Palfrey at the Claremont. Elizabeth Taylor
Murder Must Advertise. Dorothy L. Sayers
The Public Image. Muriel Spark
The Road to Lichfield. Penelope Lively
The Sea, The Sea. Iris Murdoch
Treasures of Time. Penelope Lively
The Virgin in the Garden. A.S. Byatt
Symposium. Muriel Spark
In Chancery (Forstye Saga, book 2). John Galsworthy
To Let (Forsyte Saga, book 3). John Galsworthy
Mrs. McGinty's Dead. Agatha Christie
The Secret Adversary. Agatha Christie
Good Morning, Midnight. Jean Rhys
The Years. Virginia Woolf
The Children's Book. A.S. Byatt
Afternoon Men. Anthony Powell
Travels With My Aunt. Graham Greene
Party Going. Henry Green

Sunday, December 20, 2009

The 2010 Bibliophilic Books Challenge

**Challenge completed. See my wrap-up post here.**

Dates:
1 January to 31 December 2010
Hosted by: Lesley of A Life in Books

Guidelines:
  • Read a set number of books that focus on books or reading.
  • Books can be fiction or nonfiction.
  • Only books read during the challenge will count.
  • Re-reads and crossovers with other challenges are allowed.
  • No need to make a list of books to read.
  • You can change your mind on any particular book selection throughout the challenge.
Levels of Participation:
  • Bookworm: Read three books
  • Litlover: Read six books
  • Bibliomaniac: Read twelve books
See my original post about the challenge here.
See my wrap-up post here.
See the challenge announcement page here.
See the list of reviews here.

I'm signing up at the Bookworm level (three books), but hope to do better than that.

MY READING LIST:
  1. The Anthologist. Nicholson Baker [See Review]
  2. People of the Book. Geraldine Brooks [Review to come]
  3. The Forgotten Garden. Kate Morton [See Review]
  4. The Egypt Game. Zilpha Keatley Snyder [See Review]
  5. The Inheritance. Simon Tolkien [See Review]

OTHER POSSIBLE CHOICES:
  • Fiction:
    The Book of Air and Shadows. Michael Gruber
    The Book of Lost Things. John Connolly
    The Bookwoman's Last Fling. John Dunning
    The Dante Club. Matthew Pearl
    Ex-Libris. Ross King
    The Geographer's Library. Jon Fasman
    Inkheart. Cornelia Funke
    The Last Dickens. Matthew Pearl
    The Secret of Lost Things. Sheridan Hay
    Sign of the Book. John Dunning

  • Nonfiction:
    A Gentle Madness. Nicholas A. Basbanes
    A Passion for Books. Harold Rabinowitz
    Book Row. Marvin Mondlin
    Ex Libris: Confessions of a Common Reader. Anne Fadiman
    Library: An Unquiet History. Matthew Battles
    The Library at Night. Alberto Manguel
    Old and Rare: Thirty Years in the Book Business. Leona Rostenberg and Madeleine B. Stern
    Old Books, Rare Friends. Madeleine B. Stern and Leona Rostenberg
    Sisters of the Sinai. Janet Martin Soskice
    Slightly Chipped: Footnotes in Booklore. Lawrence Goldstone
    The Yellow-Lighted Bookshop. Lewis Buzbee

Monday, December 14, 2009

The Art History Reading Challenge

***Challenge ended. See my wrap-up post here.***

Dates: 1 January to 31 December 2010
Hosted by: Nomadreader

Guidelines:
  • Read at least 3 books about art in 2010
  • Books can be either fiction or nonfiction, and can be from any genre (historical fiction, graphic novels, etc.)
  • Young adult and children's books are allowed
  • Crossovers with other challenges are allowed
  • You can make your list of books in advance or choose as you go

Levels of Participation:
  • Curious - Read at least 3 books about art, either fiction or nonfiction
  • Fascinated - Read at least 6 books about art, either fiction or nonfiction
  • Enamored - Read at least 9 books about art, either fiction or nonfiction
  • Utterly enchanted - Read at least 12 books about art, either fiction or nonfiction
I'm signing up for the "Fascinated" level (at least 6 books).

See my original post about the challenge here.
See my wrap-up post here.
See the challenge announcement page here.
See the LibraryThing discussion group here.

MY READING LIST
  1. The Griffin and Sabine Trilogy. Nick Bantock [See Review]
  2. The Raphael Affair. Iain Pears [See Review]
  3. Quattrocento. James McKean [See Review]
  4. The Hypnotist. M.J. Rose [See Review]
  5. The Forgery of Venus. Michael Gruber
  6. Lydia Cassatt Reading the Morning Paper. Harriet Scott Chessman

LIST OF POSSIBILITIES
Art-Related Fiction
A Curious Earth: A Novel. Gerard Woodward
A Killer Collection (Collectible Mysteries, No.1). J.B. Stanley
Afterimage. Helen Humphreys
An Artist of the Floating World. Kazuo Ishiguro
Cat's Eye. Margaret Atwood
Chasing Cezanne. Peter Mayle
Coast Road. Barbara Delinsky
Death and Restoration. Iain Pears
Depths of Glory. Irving Stone
Feint of Art (Annie Kincaid Mysteries No.1). Hailey Lind
Girl in Hyacinth Blue. Susan Vreeland
Girl with a Pearl Earring. Tracy Chevalier
Headlong. Michael Frayn
I Am Madame X. Gioia Dilberto
Leonardo's Swans. Karen Essex
Luncheon of the Boating Party. Susan Vreeland
Lust for Life. Irving Stone
Lydia Cassatt Reading the Morning Paper. Harriet Scott Chessman
Modern Art: A Novel. Evenly Toynton
My Name Is Asher Lev. Chaim Potok
Pale as the Dead. Fiona Mountain
Quattrocento. James McKean
Seek My Face. John Updike
Stealing Athena. Karen Essex
Still Life. Louise Penny
Stone Virgin. Barry Unsworth
The Agony and the Ecstasy. Irving Stone
The Bone Vault. Linda Fairstein
The Brutal Art. Jesse Kellerman
The Calder Game. Blue Balliett
The Caves of Perigord. Martin Walker
The Cezanne Chase (Inspector Jack Oxby). Thomas Swan
The Chrysalis: A Novel. Heather Terrell
The DaVinci Deception. (Inspector Jack Oxby). Thomas Swan
The Danish Girl. David Ebershoff
The Final Faberge (Inspector Jack Oxby). Thomas Swan
The Forgery of Venus. Michael Gruber
The Illuminator. Brenda Rickman Vantrease
The Lady and the Unicorn. Tracy Chevalier
The Light Possessed. Alan Cheuse
The Light That Failed. Rudyard Kipling
The Lost Diaries of Frans Hals: A Novel. Michael Kernan
The Madonnas of Leningrad. Debra Dean
The Marble Faun. Nathaniel Hawthorne
The Matisse Stories. A.S. Byatt
The Mercury Visions of Louis Daguerre. Dominic Smith
The Moon and Sixpence. W. Somerset Maugham
The Mysterious Edge of the Heroic World. E.L. Konigsberg
The Needle in the Blood. Sarah Bower
The Painted Kiss. Elizabeth Hickey
The Painter from Shanghai. Jennifer Cody Epstein
The Painter. Will Davenport
The Raphael Affair. Iain Pears
The Second Mrs. Gioconda. E.L. Konigsberg
The Seventh Unicorn. Kelly Jones
The Underpainter. Jane Urquhart
The Wayward Muse. Elizabeth Hickey
The World to Come: A Novel. Dara Horn

Art-Related Nonfiction
Brunelleschi's Dome. Ross King
Sargent's Daughters: A Biography of a Painting
. Erica S. Hirshler
Strapless. Deborah Davis
The Judgment of Paris. Ross King
The Lost Painting. Jonathan Harr
The Story of the Armory Show. Milton W. Brown

Sunday, December 6, 2009

The Series Challenge Season Four

***Challenge ended. See my wrap-up post here.***

Dates: 1 December 2009 to 30 November 2010
Hosted by: Kathrin of Secret Dreamworld of a Bookaholic

Guidelines:
  • Pick a couple series you already started and now want to finish (meaning, you'll be all up to date with the series when it ends).
  • Read at least 4 books, more are also okay, of course!
  • Crossovers with other challenges are always okay.
  • Post your reviews on your blog or in the comments section of the challenge page, no matter how long. If you post the review on your blog, post a link to the review in the comments section so everyone else can check out your review.
  • Have fun!
See my original post about the challenge here.
See my wrap-up post here.
See the challenge announcement page here.

I'll be working on these series in 2010:
  • The Cliff Janeway series by John Dunning (2 books left to read)
  • The Mrs. Malory series by Hazel Holt (6 books left to read)
  • The Needlework (Betsy Devonshire) series by Monica Ferris (9 books left to read)
  • The Pendergast series by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child (7 books left to read)
MY READING LIST:
  1. Crewel Yule (Needlework/Betsy Devonshire series). Monica Ferris [see review]
  2. Mrs. Malory and Any Man's Death (Mrs. Malory series). Hazel Holt [Review to come]
  3. A Stitch in Time (Needlework/Betsy Devonshire series). Monica Ferris [Review to come]