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Member: rebeccanyc

CollectionsYour library (3,447), Currently reading (6), Read 2014 (85), Hope to read soon (620), Books to investigate (unowned) (8), African literature for theme read (59), Possible group reads (24), Favorites of recent years (277), Contained-Ins (9), Interrupted (11), Abandoned (3), Ex P (112), Read 2013 (110), Read 2012 (107), Read 2011 (97), Read 2010 (101), Read 2009 (87), Read 2008 (70), Read 2007 (incomplete list) (56), Read 2006 (incomplete list) (32), Give Away (21), All collections (3,483)

Reviews576 reviews

Tagsfiction (1,560), 20th century literature (947), [needs cover] (614), [photographs] (373), 21st century literature (363), US literature (351), [illustrations] (320), history (301), LT recommendation (268), mystery/crime (230) — see all tags

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Recommendations32 recommendations

About meMy 2014 reading logs, with comments

Club Read 2014   Fifth thread   Fourth thread   Third thread  Second thread  First thread

Earlier Reading
2013 Club Read: Sixth thread Fifth thread  Fourth thread  Third thread   Second thread   First thread   75 Books: Second thread   First thread
2012 Club Read: 4th thread 3rd thread 2nd thread 1st thread. 75 Books: 3rd thread 2nd thread 1st thread
2011 Club Read: 3rd thread 2nd thread 1st thread 75 Books: 2nd thread 1st thread
2010 Club Read: 2nd thread 1st thread 75 Books: 4th thread 3rd thread 2nd thread 1st thread
2009 Club Read 75 Books

About my libraryBooks Read in 2014
* means the book was a favorite read

87. The Power and the Glory by Graham Greene
86. The Captain's Daughter by Alexander Pushkin*
85. The Edge of the Storm by Agustin Yáñez*
84. Love in a Bottle by Antal Szerb
83. The Spectre of Alexander Wolf by Gaito Gazdaznov
82. The Dead Girls by Jorge Ibargüengoitia*
81. The Burning of the World: A Memoir of 1914 by Béla Zombory-Moldován
80. The Wild Ass's Skin by Honoré de Balzac
79. The Sleepwalkers: How Europe Went to War in 1914 by Christopher Clark
78. The Women's War by Alexandre Dumas*
77. The Mongolian Conspiracy by Rafael Bernal
76. Ninety-Three by Victor Hugo
75. What the Robin Knows: How Birds Reveal the Secrets of the Natural World by Jon Young
74. The Charterhouse of Parma by Stendhal*
73. The President by Miguel Angel Asturias
72. Land of Love and Drowning by Tiphanie Yanique
71. Stories by Anton Chekhov
70. Off Side by Manuel Vázquez Montalbán
69. Lucky Us by Amy Bloom*
68. The Mad and the Bad by Jean-Patrick Manchette
67. Pedro Páramo by Juan Rulfo*
66. Come Along with Me by Shirley Jackson
65. Slip of the Knife by Denise Mina
64. Angelica's Smile by Andrea Camilleri
63. The Treasure by Selma Lagerlöf*
62. One Day of Life by Manlio Argueta
61. Journey by Moonlight by Antal Szerb*
60. A Replacement Life by Boris Fishman
59. Reading Chekhov: A Critical Journey by Janet Malcolm
58. Invisible Cities by Italo Calvino
57. The Songlines by Bruce Chatwin
56. Forty-One False Starts: Essays on Artists and Writers by Janet Malcolm*
55. Terra Nullius: A Journey through No One's Land by Sven Lindquist
54. The White Rock: An Exploration of the Inca Heartland by Hugh Thomson*
53. Troubled Daughters, Twisted Wives edited by Sarah Weinman
52. Murder in the Central Committee by Manuel Vázquez Montalban
51. Time Present and Time Past by Deirdre Madden
50. The Forbidden Kingdom by Jan Jacob Slauerhoff
49. In Patagonia by Bruce Chatwin*
48. Deep History: The Architecture of Past and Present edited by Andrew Shryock and Daniel Lord Smail
47. American Innovations by Rivka Galchen
46. If on a Winter's Night a Traveler by Italo Calvino
45. Autonauts of the Cosmoroute by Julio Cortázar and Carol Dunlop*
44. Middle Passage by Charles Johnson*
43. The Reconstruction of Nations: Poland, Ukraine, Lithuania, Belarus, 1569-1999 by Timothy Snyder
42. The Bird's Nest by Shirley Jackson*
41. The Quality of Mercy by Barry Unsworth
40. Money by Émile Zola
39. The Worst Journey in the World by Apsley Cherry-Garrard*
38. Death in Venice and Other Tales by Thomas Mann
37. Southern Seas by Manuel Vázquez Montalbán
36. The Black Sheep by Honoré de Balzac
35. Sacred Hunger by Barry Unsworth*
34. Journey to a War by W. H. Auden & Christopher Isherwood
33. Neanderthal Man by Svante Pääbo*
32. Oliver VII by Antal Szerb*
31. Hunting Season by Andrea Camilleri
30. Captains of the Sands by Jorge Amado
29. The Sundial by Shirley Jackson*
28. The Saga of Gösta Berling by Selma Lagerlöf
27. The Angst-Ridden Executive by Manuel Vázquez Montalbán
26. The Queen's Necklace by Alexandre Dumas
25. Mastermind: How To Think Like Sherlock Holmes by Maria Konnikova
24. Tattoo by Manuel Vázquez Montalbán
23. The Interpreters by Wole Soyinka
22. Dragnet Nation: A Quest for Privacy, Security, and Freedom in a World of Relentless Surveillance by Julia Angwin
21. Boy Snow Bird by Helen Oyeyemi
20. The Pendragon Legend by Antal Szerb*
19. Landscapes of Fear by Yi-Fu Tuan
18. Home Is the Sailor by Jorge Amado
17. The Queen's Necklace by Antal Szerb*
16. Arrow of God by Chinua Achebe*
15. No Longer at Ease by Chinua Achebe
14. Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe*
13. The Human Comedy: Selected Stories by Honoré de Balzac
12. The Wine-Dark Sea by Leonardo Sciascia
11. The Beast Within by Émile Zola*
10. Tent of Miracles by Jorge Amado
9. New Grub Street by George Gissing
8. The War That Ended Peace: The Road to 1914 by Margaret MacMillan
7. The Radiance of the King by Camara Laye
6. The Dead Hour by Denise Mina
5. Autobiography of a Corpse by Sigizmund Krzhizhanovsky
4. Field of Blood by Denise Mina
3. Forest of a Thousand Daemons: A Hunter's Saga by D. O. Fagunwa
2. Showdown by Jorge Amado*
1. The Road through the Wall by Shirley Jackson

Books Read in 2013
* means the book was a favorite read

110. The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas*
109. The Adventures and Misadventures of Maqroll by Álvaro Mutis*
108. 1941: The Year That Keeps Returning by Slavko Goldstein*
107. The Red Road by Denise Mina
106. The Unknown Masterpiece by Honoré de Balzac
105. Open Door by Iosi Havilio
104. Scars by Juan José Saer
103. Deep Rivers by José Maria Arguedas
102. The Missing Year of Juan Salvatierra by Pedro Mairal
101. The Masterpiece by Émile Zola
100. Treasure Hunt by Andrea Camilleri
99. Backlands: The Canudos Campaign by Euclides da Cunha
98. Maíra by Darcy Ribeiro
97. The Penguin Book of Ghost Stories: From Elizabeth Gaskell to Ambrose Bierce edited by Michael Newton
96. Gods and Beasts by Denise Mina
95. The Hare by César Aira
94. Freud by Jonathan Lear
93. Where There's Love, There's Hate by Adolfo Bioy Casares and Silvina Ocampo*
92. A House in the Country by José Donoso*
91. The African by J.-M. G. Le Clézio*
90. The End of the Wasp Season by Denise Mina
89. Aunt Julia and the Scriptwriter by Mario Vargas Llosa*
88. Resolution by Denise Mina
87. A Dead Man's Memoir (A Theatrical Novel) by Mihkail Bulgakov
86. The Broken Road: From the Iron Gates to Mount Athos by Patrick Leigh Fermor
85. Oil on Water by Helon Habila
84. Exile by Denise Mina
83. La Reine Margot by Alexandre Dumas
82. Case Closed by Patrik Ouředník
81. Garnethill by Denise Mina
80. Midnight in Peking: How the Murder of a Young Englishwoman Haunted the Last Days of Old China by Paul French
79. Blue White Red by Alain Mabanckou
78. Still Midnight by Denise Mina
77. L'Amour by Marguerite Duras
76. Onitsha by J. M. G. le Clezio*
75. Breaking the Maya Code by Michael D. Coe
74. Red Spectres: Russian Gothic Tales from the Twentieth Century selected and translated by Muireann Maguire
73. 419 by Will Ferguson
72. Rue du Retour by Abdellatif Laâbi
71. Broken Glass by Alain Mabanckou
70. The Laughing Man by Victor Hugo*
69. The Bridge of Beyond by Simone Schwarz-Bart*
68. Morality Play by Barry Unsworth*
67. Where'd You Go, Bernadette? by Maria Semple
66. The Bottom of the Jar by Abdellatif Laâbi
65. Memoirs of a Porcupine by Alain Mabanckou*
64. Archangel: Fiction by Andrea Barrett
63. Xala by Sembène Ousmane
62. Murther & Walking Spirits by Robertson Davies
61. Kristin Lavransdatter by Sigrid Undset
60. Dersu the Trapper by V. K. Arseniev*
59. Lost Girls: An Unsolved American Mystery by Robert Koker
58. Who Owns the Future? by Jaron Lanier
57. The Bloody Chamber and Other Stories by Angela Carter
56. The Examined Life: How We Lose and Find Ourselves by Stephen Grosz
55. Ambiguous Adventure by Cheikh Hamidou Kane
54. The Lost Art of Finding Our Way by John Edward Huth
53. Hangsaman by Shirley Jackson
52. The Greenlanders by Jane Smiley*
51. The Belly of Paris by Émile Zola
50. The Seven Solitudes of Lorsa Lopez by Sony Lab'ou Tansi
49. A Child of All Nations by Pramoedya Ananta Toer
48. Stalin: The Court of the Red Tsar by Simon Sebag Montefiore
47. The Riddle of the Labyrinth: The Quest to Crack an Ancient Code by Margalit Fox
46. Reticence by Jean-Philippe Toussaint
45. Jude the Obscure by Thomas Hardy
44. This Earth of Mankind by Pramoedya Ananta Toer
43. Sister Bernadette's Barking Dog: The Quirky History and Lost Art of Diagramming Sentences by Kitty Burns Florey*
42. Lucifer Unemployed by Aleksander Wat
41. The Conquest of Plassans/A Priest in the House by Émile Zola
40. Surrender on Demand by Varian Fry*
39. The Sorrow of War by Bảo Ninh*
38. Transit by Anna Seghers*
37. Slammerkin by Emma Donaghue
36. The Dance of the Seagull by Andrea Camilleri
35. Alien Hearts by Guy de Maupassant
34. To Say Nothing of the Dog: or How We Found the Bishop's Bird Stump at Last by Connie Willis*
33. Astragal by Albertine Sarrazin*
32. The Sin of Father Mouret by Émile Zola
31. An Armenian Sketchbook by Vassily Grossman*
30. Dead Souls by Nikolai Gogol*
29. Pieces of Light: How the New Science of Memory Illuminates the Stories we Tell about Our Pasts by Charles Fernyhough
28. Three Men in a Boat by Jerome K. Jerome
27. The Necklace and Other Tales by Guy de Maupassant*
26. Smile As They Bow by Nu Nu Yi
25. The Issa Valley by Czeslaw Milosz*
24. It Was a Long Time Ago, and It Never Happened Anyway: Russia and the Communist Past by David Satter
23. The Day of the Owl by Leonardo Sciascia
22. To Each His Own by Leonardo Sciascia*
21. Equal Danger by Leonardo Sciascia
20. War and War by László Krasznahorkai*
19. The Opportune Moment, 1855 by Patrik Ouřednik*
18. The Orientalist: Solving the Mystery of a Strange and Dangerous Life by Tom Reiss*
17. Laughable Loves by Milan Kundera
16. A Harlot High and Low by Honoré de Balzac
15. News from Heaven by Jennifer Haigh
14. Lost Illusions by Honoré de Balzac*
13. Jonathan Wild by Henry Fielding
12. The City Builder by George Konrád
11. Young Stalin by Simon Sebag Montefiore*
10. Old Man Goriot by Honoré de Balzac
9. The Ladies' Paradise by Émile Zola
8. Explosion in a Cathedral by Alejo Carpentier*
7. Doomsday Book by Connie Willis
6. Bring Up the Bodies by Hilary Mantel*
5. My Century by Alexsander Wat*
4. Kornél Esti by Dezsõ Kosztolányi
3. The Toilers of the Sea by Victor Hugo*
2. The Black Count: Glory, Revolution, Betrayal and the Real Count of Monte Cristo by Tom Reiss*
1. Pot Luck by Emile Zola

To see which books I read in earlier years, please go to my library and look for collections labeled "Read in 2011," etc.

GroupsAfrican/African American Literature, All Books Africa, And Other Stories, Author Theme Reads, Biographies, Memoirs and Autobiographies, Board for Extreme Thing Advances, Booker Prize, Bug Collectors, Club Read 2009, Club Read 2010show all groups

Favorite authorsChinua Achebe, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, Jorge Amado, W. H. Auden, Beryl Bainbridge, Honoré de Balzac, Amy Bloom, Mikhail Bulgakov, Andrea Camilleri, Bonnie Jo Campbell, Alejo Carpentier, John le Carré, Sarah Caudwell, Anton Chekhov, Barbara Comyns, Albert Cossery, Robertson Davies, Jennifer Egan, Anne Fadiman, J. G. Farrell, Patrick Leigh Fermor, Paula Fox, Mavis Gallant, Jaimy Gordon, Vassili Grossman, Shirley Hazzard, A. E. Housman, Shirley Jackson, Jill Lepore, Mario Vargas Llosa, Janet Malcolm, Thomas Mann, Hilary Mantel, Czesław Miłosz, Alice Munro, Alvaro Mutis, Flannery O'Connor, David Peace, Edith Pearlman, Andrey Platonov, Joseph Roth, Philip Roth, James Salter, Luc Sante, José Saramago, Leonardo Sciascia, Victor Serge, Vikram Seth, Jane Smiley, Rebecca Solnit, Vladimir Sorokin, Antal Szerb, Ngũgĩ wa Thiong'o, Leo Tolstoy, Honor Tracy, Barbara W. Tuchman, Magdalena Tulli, Sylvia Townsend Warner, William Butler Yeats, Émile Zola (Shared favorites)


Favorite bookstoresBook Culture, Crawford-Doyle Booksellers, Posman Books, St. Mark's Bookshop (New York City), The Corner Bookstore, The Harvard Coop

Favorite publishersArchipelago Books, NYRB Classics

Account typepublic, lifetime

URLs /profile/rebeccanyc (profile)
/catalog/rebeccanyc (library)

Member sinceJul 14, 2006

Currently readingLost Classics: Writers on Books Loved and Lost, Overlooked, Under-read, Unavailable, Stolen, Extinct, or Otherwise Out of Commission by Michael Ondaatje
Forests: The Shadow of Civilization by Robert Pogue Harrison
Sherlock Holmes: The Complete Novels and Stories, Volume I by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
A Book of Luminous Things: An International Anthology of Poetry by Czesław Miłosz
The Violent Land by Jorge Amado
show all (6)

Leave a comment


I've been working on getting the next Reading Globally theme ready. I was sidetracked by Stefan Zweig, who is too early to count, but when do you want me to open the thread?
Thanks for the link to your thread. I was totally baffled that I couldn't see it. Turns out that I had somehow clicked the "ignore" button!!! How that happened is a mystery. Only thing I can think of is that it happened when I was browsing with my smart phone. Sometimes weird things happen. At any rate, it explains why I couldn't see your thread. It literally wasn't there!
Hi Rebecca,

I saw your review of If on a winter's night a traveler — maybe it was through Connections. Anyway, delightful review. I'm glad you enjoyed it. The first chapter really is a tour de force. I first tried to read the book several decades ago and was stupefied by what was happening. Eventually, with a bit more background about postmodernism, etc., I read it through and found myself chuckling quite often, although the shtick of incorrectly bound books got a bit old. But still . . .

I couldn't find your thread, but I wanted to acknowledge your review. Thumbed!
hi rebecca!

i often see your reviews in various threads that i read and am interested in your take on things, so i thought i'd just keep track of what you're reading this way. =)

i read small changes a long time ago, too, and almost didn't remember what it was when you said it. i almost always enjoy marge piercy and her take on things. lost in translation i was less excited about. which was surprising because i usually like those kind of stories...
hi Rebecca,
thanks for dropping by. I think your remark may have cropped in conversation somewhere, or maybe I misattributed it, but I remember lqarling when I read it. Mantel's book is really good. I'm still thinking about Marat stretching his arm across the podium like some ghastly revenant...

I'm not so active as I used to be in LT: real life is more than full enough.

I hope you're well!
hugs Murr
Rebecca, thank you so much for your kind comment! I'm also impressed (and very happy) to see so much overlap in our libraries, so I've just sent you a friend request. Thanks as well for inviting me to join Club Read 2013. I just did, and I'll try to get a thread set up very soon. I love the interaction among members on your thread -- as well as the books you have been reading. I can also see the group will be very dangerous for my already overburdened tbr list! (A good problem to have. :) )
Hi Rebecca - you asked awhile back about The Yellow Birds about the Iraq war. I totally blanked but just realized I put it on my top ten of all time list.

I have six translations of The Iliad which I think is a good sample of the more recent translations. I looked through them and I think the translation by Robert Fagles might be the best for what you are looking for. It is a verse translation done in a nice literary style with about 15 pages of notes and a pronunciation glossary. It is available in many editions, paperback, hardback, audio book and kindle. I have the Penguin paperback which is a well made book. The audio is abridged which I would not recommend. I don't read Greek so I cannot personally attest to the accuracy but Fagles has received awards for his translations and I would expect it to be accurate. I hope you enjoy the book.
Hello again. I just wanted to say how much I enjoyed your review of An Armenian Sketchbook.
Hello Rebecca,
I wanted to make sure that you knew how much I am enjoying being a member of the Club Read 2013 group. I think you do a very good job of coming up with interesting topics and questions that make me think, entertain me and elicit some very interesting responses from other members. I am sure you have a very busy life and I appreciate the contribution of time and thought you put into into being the administrator of the group. I feel inspired to do something more than just make a list of the books I read. Thank you.
Rebecca - just noticed you have Prayerbook Hebrew: The Easy Way. You haven't studied Hebrew, have you? It would be nice to have an LT friend with that level of masochism.
I enjoyed your review of Citizens, myself and a lot of other people. I studied the French Revolution some in college and I have always found it to be a fascinating topic. Schama does a good job of proving that the standard analysis for the cause of the revolution is wrong. The nobility were as much the cause of the social explosion as were the other classes on the scene. I just bought volume two of Schama's History of Britain. I hope it is written as well as Citizens.
I like the point you picked up on about the revolution not being preordained. History is much too complex, with too many variables to be explained by systems or grand designs. Books like Schama's are a big reason I like to read history.
Nice review of The Kill. Have purchased and started The Fortune of the Rougets as a result and am really pleased. (Will read The Kill afterward.) Thanks!
Wonderful review of Citizens! Schama is one of the last Men of Letters of our time, IMO. Citizens is a treat I have yet to indulge in, myself - but I can't recommend highly enough Landscape and Memory and Rembrandt's Eyes, if you're in the mood for more Schama... :)
read your review of Citizens and gave it a big thumb up! Nicely written. I have a copy which is, unfortunately, collecting dust on my shelf. Perhaps I'll have to bring it up into a more obvious viewing spot which could encourage reading. I do have a bunch of books started already so it will be a while, but your review reminded me I have the book, and I do want to read it. Thanks.
Good to see a review of Victor Serge's memoirs - I have the OUP hardback but I couldn't resist the new edition of this one - it briefly made the Guardian Bookshop (mail order from our liberal quality newspaper) top 10 as that's how I heard of the reprint.
Happy New Year to you. Just wanted to say "thank you" for your wonderful review of Scholem Aleichem's Wandering Stars. I came across it in the Reading Globally - eastern Europe thread. It's fitting as I'm reading Agnon right now and have been thinking about reading SA sooner rather than later. This looks like an excellent read. Thanks.

Hi, Rebecca - I see you're a Jaimy Gordon fan. I really enjoyed her new book, Lord of Misrule, so have ordered her earlier novel, Bogeywoman, whose protagonist is, I think, Ursie, the sister of Maggie from LoM. I may have to get She Drove without Stopping too, if BW is good. So many books ... - Tim Bazzett
I saw your reviews of Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy and The Honourable Schoolboy by John le Carré. You are right. The Smiley vs. Karla trilogy should be read in their right order. First, Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy, then The Honourable Schoolboy and last (but not the least) Smiley’s People.

Fortunately for me, I picked up Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy first. So I knew that it was the first part and read the rest of the books chronologically. I don’t read that many Spy Thrillers or Thrillers in general. But the Smiley vs. Karla trilogy was so good! It is so well written (which is something that cannot often be said about thrillers). In this trilogy my favorite is first of all, Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy. Secondly, Smiley’s People. And finally, The Honourable Schoolboy.
I have to agree with your review of 'To Kill a Mockingbird' (except that I love Atticus!) When I read the line from Scout, about Calpurnia knocking on the Radley's front door - 'She should have gone in around back' - I realised that even the 'liberal' whites had a fixed view of the blacks in the community, ie they should know their 'place'. On reading about the history of Alabama, it's obvious that Harper Lee was painting a comparatively rose-tinted view of the South.

Also, I wondered if the attack on his children would finally make Atticus snap, and show negative feelings - anger, guilt, frustration - for once. His naivety in assuming that Bob Ewell would seek an honourable, open revenge for being humiliated in court nearly cost him his children, and only the rare appearance of their elusive neighbour saved their lives. After finishing the book, I can only imagine Atticus' reaction!

And now I'm thinking about the book all over again! ;) A very thoughtful review of a classic novel, thanks.
Thanks for your response. I guess that I saw Vivien as a passive vehicle for her parents assimilation into english society -until she rebels. Her mother's own set of secrets seem more plausible as the idea of not telling is the way they all live and behave. I really enjoyed reading this book. In fact I saw Linda Grant at the International authors festival in Toronto in the fall. I was impressed by her contribution at the roundtable discussion.
Thanks for the comments
I just saw your note re: The Clothes on their Backs by Linda Grant. I thought that a pivotal moment that illustrated Vivien's helplessness ( cultivated by her parents ) was her acceptance of her mother's suggestion that she get an abortion after her husband died. Her mother deprived her of a connection to her marriage and perhaps a relationship with a child. Although Vivien might have decided to take that route, the author has her mother suggesting it first. I could see Vivien's rejection of her parent's way fo life and her attraction to her uncle and his telling of history, Just a few thoughts tonight.
Hello--I love your library! A good mix of things I know and things I don't. On one of the talk threads I saw you recommend "The Straight and Narrow Path"--I found a copy on Bookmooch and am looking forward to it.
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