What is your summer reading project?

Mine is Raymond Chandler and Dashiell Hammett. I picked up four Sam Spade books and five Phillip Marlowe. I had only read The Long Goodbye and The Continenetal Op before. I have read plenty of mysteries, but had not really gotten around to reading these. Just finished Farewell, My Lovely so I have plenty more to get through.

Mine is Paul Johnson’s “A History of the American People”. I started it over a month ago, and I just got to the Declaration of Independence this week. It’s going to be a loooong summer.

Tracking down the Judge Dee mysteries by Robert van Gulik. I’ve been on a mystery book kick this summer and a friend talked me into reading The Chinese Bell Murders and now I’m addicted.

Middlekauf’s The Glorious Revolution, Potter’s The Impending Crisis, Freedman’s Kennedy’s Wars, Winik’s April 1865–in prep for American History survey course, and for fun, am in middle of Carter’s The Emperor of Ocean Park. Next on list is Moby Dick; due for a re-read. Oh, am also bogged down in Caro’s lates LBJ, but even after 500 pages, it seems fresh whenever I gather the strength to pick it up and read.

I’m trying to read as much of Terry Pratchett as I can. Three down, twenty-something to go.

My summer reading project is to get a bunch of SF and fantasy novels from the library and read as many as possible. I’m currently on page 200 of Harry Turtledove’s Into the Darkness, which has, I regret to say, been decidedly mediocre so far.

I’ve read Into the Darkness and just to warn you… there are at least 4 more after that one. So if you don’t like it, don’t bother. Try Hyperion and The Fall of Hyperion by Dan Simmons… much more intelligent and literate science fiction than Turtledove.

I’ve just started the Obernewtyn series by Isobelle Carmody. Only 3 books to go…

Good choices, Tretiak. I have a few Chandler and Hammett anthologies and love them.

This summer I’m reading “The Fatal Shore,” an account of the colonization of Australia (my girlfriend is a descendant of a First Fleeter).

How’d you manage THAT?

As far as I know, the only Spade novel is The Maltese Falcon (although he does show up in a couple of short stories). Hammett’s first two novels, Red Harvest and The Dain Curse, feature the otherwise-nameless Continental Operative; The Glass Key has Ned Beaumont for a protagonist; and The Thin Man has Nick and Nora Charles.

…Me? I’m about halfway through Little Dorrit.

My project is not very ambitious or anything but it’s to read the Harry Potter books. It wasn’t my original intent however. I read the first one and got hooked and now I can’t stop reading them. They are surprisingly good for kid books.

OK, I haven’t read them so I guess I will plead stupidity on that comment. Four Dashiel Hammett books nonetheless. Just started Red Harvest.

“Real” books: Crowley’s Book 4, nearly finished. Parts i-iii were fun, but part iv took me forever to get through it was so dull. Next up is either The Taoist Classics translated by Thomas Cleary or the Long Discourses of the Buddha.
Manga: I just finished Maison Ikkoku. Reading Matendou Sonata right now. Very cheesy, but in a good way. Kamikaze Kaitou Jeanne is next on the list.

I’m reading books to counteract the dreck in the series of books which followed Clan of the Cave Bear by Jean Auel. This book I enjoyed. The second, The Valley of Horses, was moderately entertaining and the third, The Mammoth Hunters, was a romance novel set in prehistory. Blech. Too much sap to get to the interesting parts, which is reading about what life for early humans might have actually been like.

So I just finished The Seven Daughters of Eve: The Science That Reveals Our Genetic Ancestry by Oxford geneticist Bryan Sykes. In it, he explains how he came to the conclusion that 95% of modern Europeans are descended from one of seven “clan mothers” whose mitochrondrial DNA has come down to us through the ages. In addition to all the science, the book includes imagined biographies for each of the women. Also especially interesting is how Sykes figured out how the Polynesians explored the islands of the South Pacific orginating in the East, instead of South America, as suggested by Thor Heyerdahl in Kon-Tiki.

Next on the list is Dance of the Tiger and the sequel Singletusk, by Bjorn Kurten, which I’m told are much better works of fiction about the period than the Auel books are.

Ooo! I just finished the Seven Daughters of Eve - fascinating book! I still can’t conceptualize how 7 individual women ended up the mothers of most Europeans today, even though I undertood the logic of the book overall. Also, I hate the fact that the author can be both an accomplished writer and such an accessible writer.

I have also read Red Harvest - great book.

as for me, I have been reading oral histories of the Warhol/punk era, including:

  • High On Rebellion - a history of Max’s Kansas City, THE restaurant/club to go to in NYC in the late 60’s/ early 70’s

  • Please Kill Me - An Uncensored Oral History of Punk - edited by the guy who coined the phrase “punk” for the music

  • Edie - an oral history of the life and times of Edie Sedgwick, one of Andy Warhol’s superstars

  • From the Velvets to the Voidoids - NOT an oral history, but a thoughtful overview of the major bands and music of the punk era.

A friend loaned them to me and they have been really interesting.

The Collected Stories of Collette


Anam Cara - John O’Donoghue

Last summer I read all of John Irving’s novels, and I loved them, but it got kind of overwhelming.

This summer, since I’m working at a bookstore, I am writing down all the book suggestions I recieve and reading them. The list keeps getting longer, but I have no regrets - I’ve read several awesome books, most notably Atonement by Ian McEwan, The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold, The Human Stain by Philip Roth, and The Emperor of Ocean Park by Stephen Carter.

At the very beginning of the summer, I reread all of Michael Ondaatje’s novels, and two collections of his poetry. He is genius; Anil’s Ghost is a masterpiece.

I leave for a Wordsworth conference in England in two weeks, so I am reading a lot of Wordsworth and American transcendentalist writings right now - Thoreau and Emerson - plus I am reviewing all the standard English Romantic poets. No complaints there, as it’s my favorite literary time period.

Ive read/reading

Alverez’s study of suicide The Savage God
Bertrand Russell’s History Of Western Philosophy
Cowley et. al What If 2
Greg Cox’s Q Continuum Trilogy

I’m attempting to read the whole Brother Cadfael series by Ellis Peters–I’m really enjoying them, but I’m only on the 7th book, and there are 20, so I have to get cracking!

Orwell - 1984

That’s the only thing planned right now.