Tying loose ends

So, 2015 is coming to an end but, apparently, my ‘to read’ list is not following the trend (when is it, really?…).

So, before I start any new books, in the new year, I made a promise to myself to finish the ones I’ve already started.

And, if you’re any curious as to what they are, I’ll leave you to the daunting task of imagining yourselves as serial-readers, such as me, with such a task at hands.

 

  • David Copperfield – Charles Dickens

Dickens is always a go to option, when in doubt of what to read next. His books are complex, complete, terribly well-written and with enthralling stories.

David Copperfield is somewhat of a Candide of the 19th century, or sort of the original FML.

Little Davy started off his life on an ill-fated hour of an ill-fated day. But I’ll leave you to the first paragraphs:

‘WHETHER I shall turn out to be the hero of my own life, or whether that station will be held by anybody else, these pages must show. To begin my life with the beginning of my life, I record that I was born (as I have been informed and believe) on a Friday, at twelve o’clock at night. It was remarked that the clock began to strike, and I began to cry, simultaneously.

In consideration of the day and hour of my birth, it was declared by the day and by some sage women in the neighbourhood who had taken a lively interest in me several months before there was any possibility of our becoming personally acquainted, first, that I was destined to be unlucky in life; and secondly, that I was privileged to see ghosts and spirits; both these gifts inevitably attaching, as they believed, to all unlucky infants of either gender born towards the small hours on a Friday night.’

 

  • Howl’s moving castle – Diana Wynne Jones

Yes, you read it. This is the original book from where Miyazaky-sensei built the masterpiece (aren’t all of his movies masterpieces?) you all know so well.

Diana Wynne Jones has created a marvelous, colourful world, filled to the brim with detail that perfectly complements the viewing of the film.

If you’ve enjoyed it, take a little while to travel through the world of Ingary through Jones’ eyes.

 

  • The colour of magic – Terry Pratchett

Part of the never-ending Disworld series, Terry Pratchett show us his witty genious, while creating a whole world from scratch.

I’m not very far along this one, but I’m enjoying the dynamics of it. And I’m looking forward to all the others I still have waiting for me.

 

  • How to be a Victorian – Ruth Goodman

Being the History freak that I am (and especially focused on the Modern and Victorian era), and a crazy enthusiast for Social History, I find this book utterly delightful.

This is a true ‘how to’ guide to live as a true Victorian, guiding us through all the stages of the day, from the moment one wakes up to breakfast time, making way to personal hygiene practices and everything in between.

I get so excited about all of this that I feel the need to share every little detail with whomever is at hand (or on Facebook, I don’t care!).

 

  • King Charles II – Antonia Fraser

Having read Marie Antoinette’s and Louis XIV’s  biography by this very author, I knew I had to get my hand on the rest of her work.

Mrs. Fraser truly transports us to whatever time she is describing in a very effortless, light way even if she never loses focus of the historic reality.

Charles II, party animal extraordinaire, had a rough start in life but eventually became the King England was asking for. The Merry Monarch was desired by the majority and, despite his many personal flaws was, all in all, a cool guy.

 

  • The making of home – Judith Flanders

Yes, another History book, this time focusing on the development of the private space we know as ‘home’.

It’s amazing to see how the house went from a mere refuge from the daily grind to live up to the ‘man’s castle’ standards.

A very complete and thorough work that I find fascinating and cannot read without taking notes.

 

  • The book of the dead – John Loyd, John Mitchinson

From the dudes who wrote The book of general ignorance, another amazing book, full of trivia about famous people from history.

My need for constant discovery is beautifully satiated when I have this one as my companion.

 

So, as you may see for yourselves, I have a weak spot for History related books (I am an archaeologist, after all) and a tendency to start books without having finished the previous ones. But, ‘no regerts’, as the meme goes! My only regret is knowing I will never get to the bottom of my ever growing ‘to read’ list.

 

Oh, well…

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