Books I've read in 2008 - I didn't really keep count but I can remember the ones I really liked. I think early in the year, somewhere in January I got a few of Jodi Piccoult's books - among them Second Glance, Vanishing Acts and Nineteen Minutes. Vanishing Acts was the first of her books that I read and I had borrowed it from my daughter in law. After that I got two other books. One thing I really liked about her is that in her books there are always two sides of a story. For example in Vanishing Acts she tells the story from the perspective of the child who was stolen from her mother. The kidnapper is her own father but there is a reason for the kidnapping, if you can call it that. The mother at that time was a serious drunk and neglected the child, who at that time was only four years old. She herself did not remember the time before her father took her. All she remembered was planting a lemon tree, with somebody she thought was her father. Anyway the first one got me interested and I bought two others - both of which kept me glued to the pages until I had finished them. Yes, I definitely liked Jodi Piccoult but I wanted a change after reading her so went on to some chick lit - mainly Jill Mansell who was a fun read. She's funny and outrageous, and I enjoy her characters and her style of writing. Then came another round of Nora Roberts -too many to count actually. I've always liked Nora Roberts' books, whether she's writing romance, family stories or murder stories, they're all enjoyable. I think I should keep track and maybe one of these days I can actually remember the number of books by Nora Roberts that I've read. However I think I have read at least 20 books by her in the past year, the latest being The Pagan Stone. Right now I can say that I've finished her trilogy - the Blood Brothers series as well as the vampire series. Then there are the fairly serious readings on Prophet Mohamed - one by Tariq Ramadan and the other by Rogerson. Two new writers introduced by my daughter Shasha are Stephanie Meyers (Twilight, New Moon, Breaking Dawn and one more I can't remember) and Elizabeth Berg - Open HOuse, The Year of Pleasures and The Art of Mending. I found Stepahnie Meyers okay only - nothing to shout about, although my other daughter Sarah seem to love Edward Cullen the handsome young vampire who is the main male character. I think I preferred LJ Smith who also wrote about vampires, werewolves shapshifters and witches. Fantasy stuff that Shasha my older girl enjoys. In fact I had been reading her books - the LJ Smith as well as other books in the fantasy range written by Diana Wynn Jones and Anne Rice etc. Shasha of course has gone on to mythology and other fantasy books. But I really liked Elizabeth Berg - her people are very real and the issues worth thinking about. The Year of Pleasures especially made me think - what would I do if my husband passes away? Would I be able to cope without him?
There were also a number of Indian writers - Jhumpa Lahiri's the Namesake and Interpreter of Maladies for one and The Inheritance of Loss by Kiran Desai. The much touted White Tiger was a fairly recent read and hilarious reading. His is a dry humour, poking fun at himself as well as India in general. Anyone who have not read this is recommended to.
These are books I had read about a month ago - A Prisoner of Birth by Jeffery Archer; Where or When by Anita Shreve; 1421 by Gavin Menzies as well as 1435, also by the same author; The Heirs of Prophet Mohammed by Barnaby Rogerson; The Independence of Miss Mary Bennet by Colleen Mc Cullough, The White Tiger by Aravind Adiga; Minx by Julia Quinn and still reading - The Other Boleyn Girl by Philippa Gregory. Yes, quite a mix right? I'm not ashamed to say that I do read the romances especially historical ones and I also love chick lit. I find some of them so hilariously funny and witty. I enjoy re reading any of the Austens as well as Bronte and even Shakespeare. Some of them I must have read more than 2o times but still enjoy them. I find Charles Dicken a bit of a bore unfortunately, except for Great Expectations and A Tale of Two cities. These I have enjoyed and can enjoy again if there's nothing else to read. My dear husband calls it "revising", when he sees me re-reading these books. But that is the wonderful thing about good books - you always find something else to interest you whenever you re read that book. I can read Pride and Prejudice any number of times and not find it boring. I'll still smile at Mrs Bennet's shallowness or Mr Bennet's sarcastic remarks.