Monday, January 24, 2011

What I've been reading (and Bloggiesta wrap-up)

In my last reading update, two weeks ago, I had just finished reading the fantastic novella, Sukkwan Island, by David Vann, and was just starting on his new novel, Caribou Island. Well, I have since finished Caribou Island, and while I think I liked Sukkwan Island a little bit more, it was still a very well-written, dark, compelling story. Kind of like a "car crash" novel. Because even though I knew what was coming, I couldn't look away, and had to keep reading. Expect reviews of both later this week.

I really felt like I needed a break from the darkness of these two stories, so we ended up watching a light romantic comedy, the evening I finished reading the novel, to clear my mind, as it were. Then I started on Norwegian Wood by Haruki Murakami. I first read this several years ago but with the movie out now I want to have the story fresh in my mind. Especially if I'm going to try to watch it in Japanese! I'm planning to see it next week, so wish me luck!

This past weekend I didn't read much since it was Bloggiesta, which kept me busy, but last night I did pull out the new manga edition of Hagakure: The Code of the Samurai which came out earlier this month from Kodansha International. Such a different perspective on the world, but quite fascinating.

I'm also quite eager to start The Fates Will Find Their Way by Hannnah Pittard. I've been hearing great things about it so I think I'll juggle both it and Norwegian Wood this coming week. One is a paper copy, the other is on my e-reader, so that should cover every possible reading situation.

As for Bloggiesta, when I posted my Bloggiesta To-Do List, I knew I'd never get all of it done, and I was quite right. I also ended up having a bit of a House-iesta too as I tackled some furniture re-arranging and other things around here that had long needed doing, and it felt really good to get some of that stuff done as well. The time I could spend on the computer was mostly dedicated to working on the Haruki Murakami Reading Challenge blog. Here's what I accomplished:

*Checked all 400+ links on the sign-up post. (This took forever!)
*Added active blogs to the blogroll in the sidebar.
*Commented on many of the blogs that had an introduction post.
*Added Google Translate tool to the blog.
*Made a 'Read more' button with paw prints, and added it to the template. (Isn't it cute?)
*Wrote a blog post answering some questions regarding the challenge.

Not on the blog, but necessary all the same, I also:
*Re-arranged some folders in Google Reader.

Regarding the mini-challenges, I didn't really get a chance to complete any during the actual Bloggiesta, but I do plan to organize my books, set up a Google Form, and tackle my incredibly messy inbox before very long. Although I did remember to backup my blog. That's something, right? Plus I have been seriously thinking about a blogging schedule and my blogging goals for the coming year. If only Bloggiesta were longer! A week would be good, don't you think?

So even though I still have a good portion of the list still to tackle, I'm pretty happy with what I did manage to get done this weekend. And that list isn't going away. I'll be working on the rest of it over the next little while. I hope everyone who took part in this Bloggiesta had a productive weekend.

It's Monday, What are you reading? is hosted by Sheila at Book Journey.

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  1. Love that comparison: car crash ;) I still have to read those two books, but I'm a bit wary now... will I feel depressed after reading them? :s
    I am really curious what you will think of the movie! I haven't seen it myself (but plan to sometime soon).
    Do you read manga often, by the way?
    "The Fates.." sounds like an interesting read btw, I'll add it to my tbr list.
    I only just checked the Challenge blog, and wow, so many participants!! What an enormous task it must've been to check all of those links :s
    (And the pawprints are indeed very cute!)

  2. Yes pleasssse, a whole week of bloggiesta! Or even a month! :) Like you I didn't spend all free moments on my blog but went to watch a Japanese foddie movie (Chef of Souh Polar) with Mr Gnoe at a friend's house, where we had sushi & sake & miso soup as well :))

    I think you had a very productive weekend!
    And I love the 'read more' paw prints :)

  3. I agree too, paw prints are so~ cute!^^

  4. Caribou Island sounds so good. I love your thoughts on it here!

    Housietsa.... LOL....there's a weekend challenge I should sign up for :D

  5. There's a Norwegian Wood movie? That sounds fantastic!

  6. I really need to tidy up my Google Reader. I did last year, but I don't like it anymore... One of these days I will settle down to the task. I have a hard enough time reading the blogs on the reader nowadays...


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