Reading Tally for 2016

Happy New Year!

Many people are looking back at the year we leave behind and I figured that it would be appropriate to do here since keeping track of what I read in 2016 was what eventually began this blog. It started as simply seeing how many books and graphic novels I would read in a year since I had actual time to devote to recreational reading rather than articles or required reading while I was in college.

You will find below the total number of novels, nonfiction books, and graphic novels I read in 2016 as well as the amount of pages and what I read each month. The type of book is listed before the title and the authors are in parentheses.

I look forward to what 2017 has to offer and have some very exciting reviews and editorials planned.

As always, thanks for reading!

Novels (Nov): 41

Graphic Novels (GN): 38

Non-Fiction (NF): 5

Total Books: 46

Overall Total: 84

Page Total : 24,866

Continue reading “Reading Tally for 2016”

Catch-22 – Review

Catch-22 by Joseph Heller

Published in 1961

Pages: 463

Genre: Satire, black comedy

“It was love at first sight.”

This is most likely not what many would expect to be the first line in a book about a group of American bombardiers in World War II; then again, this isn’t just any book about a group of American bombardiers. Chances are high that popular culture has probably imprinted the title of Joseph Heller’s 1961 novel, Catch-22, in our collective minds. Focusing on John Yossarian, an American Captain on an island in war-torn Italy who tries his hardest to stay out of the air, it is a tale of lust, violence, convoluted sentences, repetitive exchanges of dialogue, and long winded paragraphs.

Continue reading “Catch-22 – Review”

On the Subject of Literary Elitism

Picture, if you will, an English major or a literary critic. Go ahead, I’ll wait.

Hipster Barista.jpg
For the record, I’m not okay with how much I look like this guy.

I’m sure there is some difference between what you and I saw, but for the sake of my argument let’s say we both imagined a person who reads the “classics” and looks down on the smut and “lesser forms” of “written art” that are “prevalent” in today’s “society.” Someone who also uses “big words” and apparently doesn’t know how to “use” quotation “marks” correctly.

Is that what you pictured? Not that last part about quotation marks? Fair enough. Unfortunately, there is a stereotype of snobbish behavior attributed to those who study or critique literature. While this stereotype may be well deserved for some, I believe there are some exceptions out there like myself. Brace yourselves; here come the big paragraphs of my opinions. Continue reading “On the Subject of Literary Elitism”

The Light Fantastic – Review

The Light Fantastic by Terry Pratchett

Published in 1986

Pages: 241

Genre: Fantasy, satire

“The sun rose slowly, as if it wasn’t sure it was worth all the effort.”

Light on the Discworld crawls at its own pace through space and when the crimson gleam of a red star invades, panic swells among the populace. The Light Fantastic, the second novel in Terry Pratchett’s Discworld series, continues the adventures of Rincewind and Twoflower as they try to save the Disc and, since they live on it, their own lives. Cultists, wizards, headhunters and Twoflower’s enchanted Luggage all chase them as Rincewind flees from his prophesied involvement in saving the world. Continue reading “The Light Fantastic – Review”

J. R. R. Tolkien: A Biography – Review

J. R. R. Tolkien: A Biography, by Humphrey Carpenter

Published in 1977

Pages: 287

Genre: Non-fiction, biography

“It is mid-morning on a spring day in 1967.”

So begins Humphrey Carpenter’s J. R. R. Tolkien: A Biography, a look at the man behind one of the most popular fantasy series ever written. What follows is an in-depth study of Tolkien’s life from his birth in South Africa to his death in his beloved English countryside. J. R. R. Tolkien: A Biography gives an extraordinary amount of context that explains not only the style in which Tolkien’s stories were written, but the genesis of a brilliant man and the beliefs that shaped him. Continue reading “J. R. R. Tolkien: A Biography – Review”

Song of Solomon – Review

Song of Solomon by Toni Morrison

Published in 1977

Pages: 337

Genre: African-American Literature

“The North Carolina Mutual Life Insurance agent promised to fly from Mercy to the other side of Lake Superior at three o’clock.”

Song of Solomon follows Macon “Milkman” Dead III in his quest to find identification in a world still very divided by skin color. From Milkman’s birth to his open-ended fate, the book chronicles a family whose roots lie farther south than their home in Michigan. When he is told that there may be gold in them thar hills…I mean, hidden in a cave, that his father and aunt found when they were young, Milkman sets off on a journey that leads him closer to himself than he thought was possible. Continue reading “Song of Solomon – Review”