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Thursday, April 10, 2014

What We're Reading ... Thursday?

Well guys, I decided to give you a break from posts about pregnancy and baby stuff. Because as much as I love those topics (and apparently can't talk about anything else these days!) I think maybe I need to remember that there are other things to talk about too. (Shocking!!)

I thought maybe we could talk about what we're reading. The books I'm currently reading are not exactly my new favorites. Actually, I'm pretty annoyed with both of them.

I'm almost done with The Sun Also Rises...

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and I'm 1/3 of the way through the audiobook of Crime and Punishment (best part of my commute).

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Have you read either of these? I find them both frustrating for different reasons. The Sun Also Rises is only my second Hemingway book, after A Moveable Feast. I loved Feast, but Sun isn't much like it. My main beef with Crime and Punishment is that I don't like any of the characters. Actually, I'd take that a step further and say I can't even stand any of them. Obnoxious group of people. (Come to think of it, I think that's the same reason I don't like Sun.)

I hope you're reading something you like better than I like these! Any recommendations for my next read after these? I'm thinking something light and enjoyable that I can read while nursing... time for some Jane Austen re-reads, maybe?

Thank you Jessica for hosting!

13 comments:

  1. I think I only got nagged into reading "The Sun also Rises" because I had a friend who went to Spain and wouldn't stop talking about it. I think "A Farewell to Arms" is much more of a pleasant read, certainly more sincere with less bravado. Hemingway's prose comes close to lovely in that one; otherwise he's just sort of bleak. Also, with TSAR I was reading it at the same time as "The Great Gatsby" and Evelyn Waugh's "Vile Bodies", and on a bit of a kick with depraved and depressed characters in the 1920's.

    I read "Crime and Punishment" in high school, and while I enjoy Dostoevsky's style in general, that one's no bowl of cherries either. It provides a fascinating analysis of the human mind in contemplating crime, and the downward spiral when one embarks on a life of sin. It also shows the real-life repercussions of subscribing to Nietzsche's ├╝bermensch theory in considering oneself to be above the law and lower populace. I think if you consider it as a character study it becomes fascinating...and there is redemption at the end, so it's not all gore and psychological torture etc.

    For cheerier recommendations, I've recently read:
    "The Elegance of the Hedgehog", by Muriel Barbery, which is a sweet story about a Paris concierge
    "Chocolate: The Consuming Passion" by Sandra Boynton (very short, very silly, very wise. Also, it has hippo cartoons)
    "A Confederacy of Dunces" by John Kennedy Toole is a wickedly funny satire about a Don Quixote in 1960's New Orleans
    "My Antonia" by Willa Cather is amazing.

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    1. Aw, Kathryn, this is great! Thanks for the recommendations! The only one of those I've read is My Antonia and I loved it, so I'm going to keep the others in mind for my next reads. You da best.

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    2. Funny you should mention "A Moveable Feast"...I just got it from the library two days ago :P

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  2. Oh goodness. Crime and Punishment is one of ... (ahem) my favorite books. I can't stand any of the characters either. They're either weird or... Raskolnikov. But it's the psychological and spiritual aspects of the book that are brilliant. Up until the end of the book it really really annoyed me, but the epilogue, in my opinion, makes up for it. In fact, the last paragraph makes up for the rest of the horrid, horrid, nasty, ew other four hundred pages. :) It's good. And then after those last few sentences, the rest of the book takes on a whole new light. (I love stories of salvation and slow grace.) Blessings!

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    1. Thanks for defending Crime and Punishment—I really appreciate knowing that this book IS worth sticking with to the bitter end. :P I'm looking forward to that epilogue!

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    2. I have to agree that the epilogue makes up all of the difference.

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  3. Just wanted to chime in and say I love your phrase "salvation and slow grace." That's exactly why I thought plodding through Sigrid Undset's Kristen Lavransdatter and Master of Hestviken were worth it! (Still haven't managed to finish C&P yet though...4th time's a charm, maybe?

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    1. Yes, that's such a beautiful phrase!

      I absolutely loved the Kristin Lavransdatter trilogy. I actually read them on our honeymoon (well the first one anyway) and at one point I got so mad at Kristin for being an idiot that I threw the book across the room. I think Frank had second thoughts about marrying me for a minute!

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  4. Have you read Louis de Wohl?

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  5. I'm sorry you are not enjoying either of those books very much. They are actually two of my favorites. I've been trying to get Paul to read Crime and Punishment forever because I think he would actually like it, but he usually gives up after about 10 pages in and goes back to reading one of his business books.

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    1. Well, I have to say, Crime and Punishment is getting a lot more interesting, and I'm starting to enjoy it. But I'm still somewhat frustrated with Sun. Why is Brett Ashley so annoying?? :P

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  6. SO I haven't read either but I will definitely add them to my obnoxious list of books to read!! I shall give both a try though; from the sounds of it they deserve it! I am currently reading Jane Eyre, and its beginning to grow on me. ♥

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  7. Ha! I LOVE it when someone else says they really aren't liking the books they're reading. I've started Crime and Punishment, but just haven't ever been able to get past the second chapter. :/ I read The Sun Also Rises years and years ago and liked the writing style, but couldn't stand the characters.

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