Saturday, October 24, 2009

I'm plugging along with Aaron.

D.H. Lawrence is watching me. He's saying, "Get with it already!"

Well, I am working on it, Mr. Lawrence. I'm enjoying the bit that I've read so far. I'm not very far, admittedly-- I keep reading before bed and then falling asleep mid-sentence. As for book #2, The Abbot C by Georges Bataille, I did a little detective work. The Connecticut state-wide library catalog indicated that only one library had a copy. I IMd a reference librarian there to see if the book was in English as it was first published in French in 1950. Alas, their copy was in French, but she did a more comprehensive search and found some libraries in Connecticut that had the translation. It was an awesome online reference transaction and I requested the book through interlibrary loan. (My library schooling is showing-- "online reference transaction.") I'll lend it to Emily since it's tricky to track down.

While I'm enjoying these European writers, I look forward to book #3, William Faulkner's Absalom, Absalom!. Its original publication date is 1936 and it takes place here in the States. My senior year, my English teacher recommended Absalom, Absalom! to me but I never got around to it. Well, William Faulkner, here I come!


More About Aaron's Rod

I finished the book today!  Aaron really doesn’t like women very much, huh?  Not only did he leave his wife and little girls to go off on his adventures, he and his companions spend an inordinate amount of time discussing our ulterior motives.  Apparently, it’s our main goal in life to get men to subject themselves to us.  Who knew?

The kind of open-ended ending was pretty cool.  I was wondering how Lawrence would wrap it up.  

Next up for me: Absalom, Absalom by William Faulkner.  (The Abbot C is book #2, but not available at my library, so I’ll come back to that one soon.)

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Hello. And Aaron's Rod.

Hello.  I am SO excited to start this project!  It is going to be a big undertaking, but I think we are up to the task!  There are so many books that I have always wanted to read, and this is going to be a great way to knock off some of the very best ones.  I can't wait.

I do feel very underqualified to talk about such great works of literature (and also to contribute to this blog created by my English-major, librarian sister).  These books have been discussed by minds much much greater than mine.  So I'm absolutely not going to be adding to the scholarship on this literature.  I don't have anything to add that someone much smarter hasn't already thought of and said!

What I can offer, though, is armchair thoughts on the books from someone who 1) hasn't read a whole lot of great books and 2) doesn't have a lot of time!

So.  I'm about 2/3 of the way done with Aaron's Rod now.  As I read, I have been asking myself whether the book is worth reading and am I glad that I am reading it.  So far Aaron's Rod is absolutely worth reading.  I think this is the first D.H. Lawrence book I have ever read and it's really good so far.  I like that his characters don't really take themselves too seriously.  When I read in the introduction (by a D.H. Lawrence scholar) that the book was about Europe's reaction to World War I, I thought to myself, "Oh no, this is going to be very sad, drawn-out, and boring."  But so far it really isn't at all.  I see how the characters are exploring what it means to live in postwar Europe.  Thankfully, they are doing so in an entertaining way.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Book 1: Aaron's Rod by D.H. Lawrence

Emily got her copy of Lawrence's Aaron's Rod yesterday and mine came in through interlibrary loan today, so we are off! Mike is going to try and read the 1001 books and he'll probably read the copies Emily gets. So far, Em is slogging through the introduction and I'm itching to open my copy.


Monday, October 12, 2009

The 1001 Books Project

The goal: Read one thousand one books before we die.
The rule book: 1001 Books You Must Read Before You Die, published in 2006 by Universe and edited by Peter Boxall.
The players: Emily, Michael, and Marissa
The method: We're going to read through the list alphabetically starting with Aaron's Rod by D.H. Lawrence.

More info soon!