My reading list

books, e-books, Kindle, reading

I find myself excitingly overwhelmed with the shear amount of new books I have either in print or on my shiny new Kindle. I had a £50 gift voucher of which I spent on some great classics, including (in no particular order):

Nineteen eighty-four
George Orwell – 2004 – Fiction
Catch-22
Joseph Heller – 2011 – Fiction

Dark alchemy: magical tales from masters of modern fantasy
His Dark Materials Trilogy: Northern Lights, the Subtle Knife, the Amber ...
Phillip Pullman – 2011
The time traveler's wife
A Christmas carol and other Christmas books
Charles DickensRobert Douglas-Fairhurst – 2006 – Fiction

In fact, I have started with “The Time Traveler’s Wife” as I have seen the film, which proved to be interesting. I am already finding though, that Henry and Clare’s story in the novel is much more fascinating. Niffeneger really brings to life her characters in the novel, compared to the film which seems to lose an element of that. The film always seemed as though it could have been better.

“Dark Alchemy” includes a number of shor stories by authors including Garth Nix, Eoin Colfer and Neil Gaiman. I’ll more than likely read a couple of short stories at a time, in order. I saw this book on sale in Blackwell’s bookshop on the university campus, fascinated by the preface and knowing of Neil Gaiman in particular. Gaiman wrote the episode “The Doctor’s Wife“, the fourth episode in the latest (sixth) Doctor Who series.

I am spoilt for choice among “Catch 22”, “Nineteen Eighty-Four” and “His Dark Materials Trilogy”. More likely I will move onto “Nineteen Eighty-Four”. I am fascinated to hear about this character, Big Brother.

For Christmas I was bought:

Brilliant Book of Doctor Who 2012
Tbc – 2011
The Quantum Universe: Everything that Can Happen Does Happen
Brian CoxJeff Forshaw – 2011 – Science
The Doctors: Who's Who: The Story Behind Every Face of the Iconic Time Lord
I am also reading “The Quantum Universe” which I say is presented very clearly by Cox & Forshaw, in what is quite an intimidating subject for many. I highly recommend it to those who want to get a grasp of the subject.  Where I do have foreknowledge of the subject and a high-level mathematical background, I have been able to read through the first four chapters of it very quickly. The authors do break down the few equations that are in the book – the formulae used are not to an exceptionally high level of mathematics. I’d say the book is made accessible to those whom have no great mathematical background. The book does nicely guide the reader through the ‘weirdness’ of quantum theory. I think it does highlight however the necessity of how mathematics is so important to physics, as much as the subject is very well explained.
The “Brilliant Book of Doctor Who 2012” is effectively an annual of the latest series of the show. I wasn’t sure what to make of it at first, but it is really packed with some great content. What I look forward to reading is that by the guest writers.
Being a fan of classic Doctor Who, as well as the revived series, I am curious to read “The Doctors: Who’s Who”. I have read mixed reviews of this on Amazon, so we’ll see.
I am still to finish:
Moab Is My Washpot
Stephen Fry – 2004 – Biography & Autobiography

Stephen Fry really admires me as a character – hence why I bought this, his first autobiography. I did find myself rather hooked to this book, although I never managed to finish it. Fry talks about the first twenty years of his life, which for him was a great struggle. I have my own “baggage”. This past year for me has been a very difficult one after losing my father and coping with an emotional turmoil of it all. After reading about the book some years ago and knowing of Fry’s many struggles, I came across this again at a time I was going through many of my own. I somehow found it inspirational and felt better reading it, although somehow I never got back to it.

In fact, once I was one third the way through I knew I should buy his second autobiography:

The Fry Chronicles
Stephen Fry – 2010 – Biography & Autobiography
So, I have a lot of reading ahead of me. And I haven’t even started on e-books yet….
As I said in my last post, I have a shiny new Kindle, the latest Kindle 4. I am really enjoying it at the moment as it lets me subscribe to newspapers, as well as store journal articles and download e-books. In fact, I am rarely parted with it. I shall comment about newspaper subscriptions in another post and possibly journal articles as well. Here, I shall talk about e-books.
Since I received my Kindle on Christmas morning, I have been fascinated by how many e-books are freely available. It is so very easy to download an e-book from Amazon’s Whispernet. I didn’t realise this, but many classics are completely, 100% free (and legal!). I have the Complete Works of Charles Dickens, the Complete Sherlock Holmes Collection, Thomas Hardy’s Complete Fiction – plus so many more. Over the holidays, I was fascinated by the film “Dorian Gray“, a portrayal of Oscar Wilde’s novel, “A Portrait of Dorian Gray”. I have the e-book, so I look forward to reading that at some point. I have many classics I look forward to devouring, but for now, in advance of the film “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo“, I bought the e-book for only £2.70. I have heard great reviews of the Millennium Series. I doubt I’ll be able to read the book before I likely see the film, but at least I should see what the book is like, to read on perhaps to the rest of the series. I also have my eyes on the Inheritance Cycle series by Chris Paolini but I have more than plenty to keep me occupied for the next few months at least.

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