SarahMichigan (sarahmichigan) wrote in 50_in_09,

Books 49 & 50

Having finished 50 books by the end of October actually feels kind of liberating- like I'm done with an "assignment" and the rest is gravy. Maybe I'll just read complete brain candy for the rest of 2009! Probably not, though...

Book #49 was "Dry," a memoir of recovering from alcoholism by Augusten Burroughs. He's most famous for "Running With Scissors" which I have not read. I have read his "Unexpected Side Effects" which I liked a lot, and I knew I'd like "Dry." It only took me two days to finish. It reads much more like a novel (and a disclaimer at the beginning says that people and events are combined and that some scenes are imaginative recreations), and a very satisfying one. He's very funny but the book also made me cry.

Book #50 was "A Confederacy of Dunces" by John Kennedy Toole. This book was utterly ridiculous, but I loved it. I listened to it as a book on CD, and the reader did a phenomenal job. I thought it was an interesting coincidence that I was listening to this at the same time I was reading "Dry" and Burroughs references the main character from "Dunces" briefly in his book. The main character, Ignatius Riley, is an over-educated under-motivated bumbler who lives off his mother most of the time and goes from job to job at other times, wreaking havoc everywhere he goes. Meanwhile, he tries on a few different political causes, trying to impress his friend from college, a radical "minx" named Myrna. It's sad that the author killed himself thinking he was a failure, since the book went on to be published and awarded a Pulitzer posthumously.

1. King Solomon's Mines [fiction]- H. Rider Haggard (unabridged book on CD)
2. The Private Life of Plants [non-fiction]- David Attenborough
3. Anna Karenina [fiction]-  Leo Tolstoy
4. The Forever War [fiction]- Joe Haldeman
5. Negotiating with the Dead: A writer on writing [non-fiction]- Margaret Atwood
6. Best of Technology Writing 2007 [non-fiction]- ed. Steven Levy
7. July's People [fiction]- Nadine Gordimer
8. The Best American Science and Nature Writing 2005 [non-fiction]- various authors, ed.  Jonathan Weiner
9. The Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes [fiction/short stories]- Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
10. Foxfire: Confessions of a Girl Gang [fiction]- Joyce Carol Oates
11. Dead Witch Walking [fiction]- Kim Harrison (unabridged book on CD)
12. The Mineral Palace [fiction]- Heidi Julavits
13. Death by Black Hole: And Other Cosmic Quandaries [non-fiction]- Neil deGrasse Tyson
14. Titan [fiction]- John Varley (unabridged book on CD).
15. Health at Every Size: The Surprising Truth About Your Weight [non-fiction]- Linda Bacon Ph.D
16. The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay [fiction]- Michael Chabon
17. The Return of Sherlock Holmes [fiction]-  Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
18. Stardance [fiction]- Spider and Jeanne Robinson
19. Indian Killer [fiction]- Sherman Alexie
20. Between, Georgia [fiction]- Joshilyn Jackson
21. The Color of Water: A Black Man's Tribute to his White Mother [non-fiction]- James McBride
22. The Art of Happiness: A handbook for living [non-fiction]- Dalai Lama and Howard Cutler
23. Wizard [fiction]- John Varley (unabridged book on CD)
24. Middlesex [fiction]- Jeffrey Eugenides (unabridged book on CD)
25. The Twentieth Century: A People's History [non-fiction]- Howard Zinn
26. Little Brother [fiction]- Cory Doctorow
27. Stars in my Pocket Like Grains of Sand [fiction]- Samuel R. Delany
28. The Bingo Palace [fiction]- Louise Erdrich
29. Broken Angels [fiction]- Richard K. Morgan (unabridged book on CD)
30. Futureland [fiction/short stories]- Walter Mosley
31. The Interesting Narrative of Olaudah Equiano [non-fiction/memoir] - Olaudah Equiano
32. Daughter of Fortune [fiction]- Isabel Allende
33. The Family: The Secret Fundamentalism at the Heart of American Power [non-fiction]- Jeff Sharlet
34. Rabit, Run [fiction]- John Updike

35. The Spiral Staircase: My Climb Out of Darkness [non-fiction]- Karen Armstrong
36. Demon [fiction]- John Varley (unabridged book on CD)
37. A Fire Upon the Deep [fiction]- Vernor Vinge

38. Groundswell: Winning in a World Transformed by Social Technologies [non-fiction]- Charlene Li and Josh BernoffBook
39. Kingdom of Cages [fiction]- Sarah Zettel
40. The Reader [fiction]- Bernhard Schlink (unabridged book on CD)
41. The Worst Hard Time: The Untold Story of Those Who Survived the Great American Dustbowl [non-fiction]- Timothy Egan (unabridged book on CD)
42. Proust and the Squid: The Story and Science of the Reading Brain [non-fiction]- Maryanne Wolf
43. The Franchise Affair [fiction]- Josephine Tey
44. Me and the Fat Man [fiction]- Julie Myerson
45. The Gate to Women's Country [fiction]- Sheri Tepper
46. The Good, The Bad, and the Undead [fiction]- Kim Harrison (unabridged book on CD)

47. The Other [fiction]- Thomas Tryon
48. Towelhead [fiction]- Alicia Erian

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