Monday, July 28, 2008

RWA : Readers Wallowing in Abandonment

Many of my friendly romance bloggers and aspiring authors are coming together for a week of meeting, greeting, workshopping, author signing, sight seeing, and I'm sure partying at the RWA Conference (Romance Writers of America) this week in San Francisco. I have read many recent blog posts about who will be there (Meljean!!!!!), what to wear, what workshops to attend... basically all kinds of nervous and excited pre-conference jitters. I've left many happy, enthusiastic, non-envious, non-self-pitying comments on these posts. And I'm truly excited for my friends. Truly. I think the last few are packing their bags and heading to the airports as I type. Me? I will experience RWA vicariously through (hopefully) hourly twitter updates and frequent blog updates. I will also be doing the other non Reader Wallowing in Abandonment things like:

1. Clean out the garage as it will be demolished for our impending addition/renovation in a few short weeks.
2. Finish cleaning the basement to make room for storing everything from garage.
3. Get my teeth cleaned.
4. Take my 83 year old father-in-law to the dentist for the first time in probably over a decade. 
5. Pay the mortgage. 
6. Pay the balance of the architect bill. *faint*
7. Pay the good faith deposit to the contractor. *faints again*

Wow! I didn't realize how exciting my week was going to be. It's the picture perfect pity party! I feel so much better now. No wallowing whatsoever. :D

How about you? What are you up to this week?

Seriously, I sincerely hope all RWA attendees-readers, bloggers, aspiring authors, published authors, editors, agents, publishers, etc., all have a fun, fantastic, and safe trip!  :D

Friday, July 25, 2008

It's Christmas in July!

Today is July 25 which means there's only five months left to get your Christmas shopping done. You've got even less time to do your holiday shopping if you celebrate Hanukkah, since the first night of Hanukkah is December 21, 2008. Me? I don't usually start shopping until sometime early November. If I start shopping any earlier, I end up spending way too much money, because I just keep shopping until December 20 something.

I decided to do a little Christmas in July gift giving to some lucky readers on my blog. Today also happens to mark my one year anniversary of maintaining some degree of organization of my bookshelves, albeit virtual organization, on Shelfari. I have quite a few books on my shelves that have been generously given to me by a certain ARC fairy and as much as I'd love to read each and every book that she gives me, it's just not possible for me to get to them all. And I need to make room for the copious number of books I need want NEED (dammit) to buy next week. Check out this list of must haves for me:

7.29.08 My Wicked Enemy :: Carolyn Jewel
7.29.08 Cry Wolf (Book 1, Anna and Charles) : Patricia Briggs
7.29.08 Dare To Love : Jaci Burton (ebook)
7.29.08 Accidental Demon Slayer : Angie Fox
7.29.08 Before I Wake: Nightmare Chronicles : Kathryn Smith
7.29.08 Shades of Dark : Linnea Sinclair
7.29.08 Nightwalker: The First Dark Days : Jocelyn Drake
7.29.08 Countdown :: Michelle Maddox SHOMI
7.29.08 Deep Trouble :: Alison Kent (Wal-Mart exclusive) <-- how cool is that?!

What did I miss?

And then ...
8.02.08 Breaking Dawn (Book 4, Twilight Saga) : Stephenie Meyer (YA)

Then a few short days later . . . .
8.05.08 Acheron : Sherrilyn Kenyon
8.05.08 First Blood (Anthology) : Sizemore, McCarthy, Green, Brook
8.05.08 When Twilight Burns (Book 4) : Colleen Gleason
8.05.08 Kiss of Fury (Book 2, Dragonfire) : Deborah Cooke

I'm digressing.

The point is that today is Christmas in July and I'm giving away books!!! I am giving away five gently used paperbacks from my Shelfari prize shelf that can be found here: My Prize Shelf. A few of the books are gently used ARCs that have all been released by now. I am also giving one lucky reader a brand new paperback of their choice of any mass market paperback (essentially $7.99 or less) or comparable priced ebook (like Jaci Burton's Dare to Love . . .) that will be released next week. It does not have to be a book that I listed above--reader's choice. All you have to do is leave a comment below telling me when you start and finish your holiday shopping. Feel free to also let me know what you're buying at the bookstore next week. I will randomly choose one winner to receive the new paperback, and five others to receive one of the gently used books from my Prize Shelf. I will close the contest on Thursday, July 31, 2008 at midnight EST. Please be sure to leave your name in the comments.
Good luck!

Monday, July 21, 2008

No more free visits with Dr. Horrible! ;)

Did everyone else succumb to the hype and watch Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog last week? I was a bit late to join the bandwagon, but did manage to watch Act I & II on Friday and then miraculously remembered to catch Act III last night before it was removed from free viewing. No worries if you missed it, though, because it is now available as an iTunes download. But now you'll have to pay $3.99 for your Doctor's visit. lol ha ha! ;p 

For those of you watched Dr. Horibble already, I want to know what drove you to watch it in the first place? And don't just say because Joss Whedon is a genius. Tell me why. 

For me, it was pure curiosity as to what was so great about it to create such an enormous buzz on the internet. And honestly, when I watched the first two Acts, I thought, 'Okay, this is cute. It's got this black comedy component with a bit of adorableness, combined with a well produced musical score,' but I wasn't blown away.  The tone kind of reminded me of "The Little Shop of Horrors," gone superhero style. Yes? By Act III, I was really digging it. I didn't realize Neil Patrick Harris could sing, let alone Broadway style. And Felicia Day? Totally won my heart. Her look, her acting, her voice. All wonderful. 

What did you like best about Dr. Horrible? Besides when Captain Hammer says, "The hammer is my penis." 

I think for me it was the musical score and orchestration. I loved the music, the lyrics, and the delivery of each song. I believe it is Joss' fiance, Maurissa Tancharoen who wrote the music with Jed Whedon and I think they did a outstanding job of it. My favorite song was the poignant song that Felicia Day sang to Dr. Horrible in the laundromat in Act II at the 7:50 mark. "Here's a story of a girl... Who grew up lost and lonely..." Totally tugged at my heartstrings. 

Was there anything you didn't like about Dr. Horrible? 

There was something I noticed almost right from the start that stuck in the back of my mind and bothered me about this production. I first noticed it during one of the first scenes in which Dr. Horrible was singing-- when he was in the laundromat? Everyone there was white. He's in a city laundromat and everyone is white? Then he proceeds to walk down the street and everyone is white. At one time we see the back of a woman's head and she has black hair, but there was no way to tell if she was nonwhite. Then it isn't until Act III when we finally see nonwhite actors; Maurissa Tancharoen herself, who is Asian, plays one of the groupies and then there are two or three black people as walk ons later in the act. I know this is a low (no?) budget production, and all the actors were probably friends and family who weren't even paid, but still it bothered me.  Anyone else? 

All in all, I enjoyed watching Dr. Horrible and look forward to future productions by Mutant Enemy Productions. The idea of a web series is fun and ingenious, and I especially like the Broadway Musical feel that Dr. Horrible's Sing Along Blog had. I wonder what's up next and how soon before we see new web series by other production companies? It should be interesting. :)

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

TBR Review: Mr. Perfect by Linda Howard

Published: 2000

Mr. Perfect is a contemporary romantic suspense story by author Linda Howard. The heroine, Jaine Bright, goes out for dinner and drinks with three of her colleagues every Friday night to unwind after the long workweek. Jaine, Luna, Marci, and T.J. each work in different departments within a rather large company and are also very different women in personality as well as lifestyle. Jaine is single; Luna is in a hot and cold dating relationship with a superstar athlete; Marci is living with a younger boyfriend who is essentially her boy toy; and T.J. is married, but unsure if her marriage is still solid. During one of their Friday nights out, the three friends have some fun and make a list of eight requirements for their "Mr. Perfect." What starts out as a joke between friends soon gets out of hand when the list goes public and the nation has fun with it. Family members, husbands, and boyfriends aren't thrilled with the list or the exposure and relationships are put to the test. Then the situation quickly goes from unpleasant to horrific when someone starts stalking the four women and one of them is murdered. As the murder mystery unravels and the women fear for their lives, Jaine and her detective neighbor, Sam Donovan, fall for each other.

Jaine has recently moved into her first ever house and is having difficulty getting along with her single male neighbor, Sam Donovan. At first she suspects Sam is an alcoholic drug dealer based on his appearances and the hours he keeps. They set off each other's tempers so quickly and easily, yet despite the hostile tension between them, there is this undeniable heat and attraction between them as well. It isn't until Jaine finds out that Sam is a cop that she backs off a bit, reevaluates her hostility toward him, and attempts some civility.

The bickering that went back and forth between Jaine and Sam was quite entertaining and I found myself looking forward to the scenes they were in together just for their fast paced and heated dialogue. The shift from hot tempered bickering to playful banter was smooth and natural. I adored the way Sam was the one to keep his cool and the way he would try to kiss or touch Jaine when her temper would flare up. I think in one instance he even had to hide his laughter over her short fuse, which was very endearing. Although the author was able to accurately portray Sam as a sexy, irresistible cop next door, I wasn't convinced why Jaine was so sexually intimate with him at the drop of a hat. The first time they make out, she's practically humping him in her driveway! It just seemed way too fast and furious for someone who couldn't stand him just two days before. No matter how hot the cop is. ***Spoiler*** Sam also asks Jaine to marry him during sex and it was either the first or second time they were together. She has been engaged three times in the past to three different guys and she says yes to Sam now? That was too unrealistic to me. ***End Spoiler***

Ms. Howard did a great job at introducing the friends and establishing their inter-relationships right from the beginning when the women were in the restaurant making The List. She was also effective at portraying the relationships of Jaine's three friends with their respective partners in a fulfilling way that didn't detract from the romance between Jaine and Sam, and in fact contributed to the quality of the story. ***Spoiler*** One of my favorite scenes in the book is between secondary character Luna and her boyfriend Shamal when he came to her apartment to work things out between them. I thought their relationship was a goner and that scene just totally tugged at my heart. Which, of course, set me up for a dramatic shock and sorrow. ***End Spoiler***

The murder mystery was a bit predictable, but was integral at increasing the tension of the story and most importantly at keeping Sam involved in Jaine's life. The murder plot started out interesting, but once I figured out who the murderer was, that portion of the story started to fall flat for me. And I don't think it was because I figured out the murderere early, but because the murderer's profile was overboard for me with way too many creepy oddities. ***Spoiler*** I would have been more content with the murderer being some troubled loner who was constantly reminded by his mother that he would never be "Mr. Perfect," then have all those other wacky characteristics. It just seemed like the author tried to hard to make him scary and demented where a troubled loner would have worked just as well and have not come across as too unbelievable.***End Spoiler***

The story is a nice blend of romance, friendship, and how a little fun between friends can get out of hand and impact relationships. I liked it well enough, my favorite components being the relationships between the girlfriends and the bicker-turned-banter between Jaine and Sam. What didn't work for me was the murderer's extra wacky profile and the unrealistic pacing of from initial sexual intimacy to being in love to getting married.


Blueberries, Braces and a Birthday!

Maria is at sleep away camp this week, so I'm trying to plan special mommy-daughter things to do with Anna every day so this week is a little special for her, too. Monday we went to see the Kit Kittredge movie. So many of the girls in the theater brought their doll with them to watch the film, including us. It was very cute and the movie was very good. 

Yesterday, Anna and I went blueberry picking at a local farm. [ And yes, for all you wise crackers, there are farms in NJ... its not just all the industry and dockyards you see from the plane at Liberty Airport, a.k.a Newark Airport or from watching The Sopranos. We are the Garden State after all. Um, gee. Defensive much? lol ;) ]We picked about 4 lbs. of blueberries in about 45 minutes. We would have stayed longer to get enough berries for homemade jam, but it got really hot and we started melting. Hopefully we won't eat them all right out of the fridge before I have time to make a yummy treat out of them. I'm thinking homemade blueberry ice cream or a blueberry tart with vanilla ice cream. 

Here are a few shots of my Anna in the blueberry field.  Can you see the bushes loaded with blueberries? The branches were literally sagging to the ground with ripened fruit. 

Today, I took her to the orthodontist to get her braces put on. See? Something special every day. Okay, so this one isn't her favorite outing so far this week. Not mine either. Now both my girls will have braces for the next year and my monthly payment to the orthodontist is now $310 and that's even after the deductible. *cry*  I did get her a happy meal and a $1 sundae on the way home, though. That's special! :) 

I would love to post a picture of her with her new braces-she looks quite adorable, but still won't let me take a picture of her. When we got home, she checked herself out in the mirror and turned to me with a small smile and said, "I'm pretty." Isn't that so sweet? It really made my day. She is a big worrier (I mean, big!), and I imagine braces are a tough thing for a young one to handle. They can be uncomfortable and obviously there's this whole thing about appearances. So to hear her say something so positive about herself in a situation like this was music to my ears.  

This afternoon I am baking my father in law a birthday cake. He is 83 years old today! Isn't that awesome? [Remind me how awesome that is the next time I complain about turning ffff fffforty later this fall, k?] He was a teenager in the Philippines during World War II and hid from the Japanese in the mountains with his parents and 10 brothers and sisters, along with several cousins. It was there in the forest, when he and one of his brothers decided to take a days walk to a village to try to buy some sugar for their mother, that he stepped on a Japanese land mine that exploded and imbedded shrapnel in his eyes for a few weeks before he got medical attention and rendering him legally blind. The stories of what he and his family did to survive are simultaneously heart wrenching and uplifting. The reverence he still holds for the United States forces for coming to rescue the Philippines from Japan during that time are inspiring. It is no wonder, really, that thirty or so years later he immigrated to the US with his wife and only child (my husband) and wholeheartedly embraced becoming an American citizen. My mother in law passed away about a year and a half ago and so due to his near blindness and a debilitating stroke he had in 2000, my father in law now lives with us so we can take care of him. While I know he is happy to be with us, I also know he misses his wife terribly (she died the day before their 45th wedding anniversary), so I'm trying to make this birthday a sweet day for him. Figuratively and literally. 

I think his favorite graham cracker cake with the whipped cream and banana filling will do the trick! :D 

Friday, July 11, 2008

Happy Hour!!!

This week was one of those weeks when I didn't realize how stressed out I was until it was over and now I feel this tremendous need to get some release.  I'm celebrating a major milestone on big project I've been working on for the last year with a pitcher of watermelon martinis!  ... and then when the kids are finally asleep... well... ;) 

Watermelon Lemonade Martinis

4 lb. of watermelon
16 oz. of lemonade

1. Cut watermelon flesh from the rind and into chunks.
2. Puree watermelon in blender until smooth.
3. Use a fine mesh sieve and strain watermelon juice into a large glass pitcher. 
4. Add lemonade to pitcher and stir.  
At this point, you can serve the watermelon lemonade to the kids in glasses filled with ice. 
5. Fill a glass with ice. 
6. Add a shot of vodka to ice.
7. Fill glass to top with watermelon lemonade.

Enjoy! :) 

About Me!

Today is my 'About Me' spotlight day on the new Desert Island Keeper (DIK) blog! Stop by and visit me there and find out about some of my reading habits, my favorite heroes and heriones, and what I'd want with me if I got stranded on a desert island!

Thursday, July 3, 2008

What's Your reading personality?

I found this quiz at The Book Binge.  
I am the Eclectic Reader:

You read for entertainment but also to expand your mind. You're open to new ideas and new writers, and are not wedded to a particular genre or limited range of authors.

I suppose there is some truth to that. I honestly expected to get the Serial Reader because I am a self proclaimed series junkie.  If I start a series, I feel strongly compelled to read ALL the books and IN ORDER.  There are a few series that I'm going to try to break from. Emphasize try.  Feehan's Carpathian Series is one--I love the books, but they are getting a bit repetitiv. I'm waiting for Dimitri and Skyler's story...  Then there is Kenyon's Dark Hunters.  I might try to make the break after Acheron.  Or maybe Stryker's book.  Oh wait! I really want to read Nick's story.  I hope he doesn't get killed off before he's redeemed and gets to live happily ever after... And we won't even discuss the crack that is the Black Dagger Brotherhood. See?  I'm just too easily addicted.  

Oh! And remember the review I did of Lisa Renee Jones' first novel in her Harlequin Nocturne White Knights series? The one I gave a C+ to barely six weeks ago? The one in which I said I probably wasn't going to pick up the rest of the series?  Wellllll... I took advantage of eharlequin's 30% Spice novels to buy Megan Hart's Dirty and Broken, but needed to buy a few more books to make the free shipping. (I'm not the only one who does this, I'm sure). So the second and third books in Lisa's White Knights series were discounted a few bucks, so I caved and bought them.  I was still like two bucks shy of the free shipping mark, so I also bought Sex, Straight Up and Nightcap by Kathleen O'Reilly. I would have completed that 'series' with Shaken and Stirred, but it was sold out. I'll have to find that somewhere else. See? Total series junkie.  

So what kind of reader personality are you?  

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

How Many Popular Books Have YOU Read?

I got the idea for this post from Kristie(J) who got the idea from Naida who got the idea from J. Kaye, who... yeah, like that! 

Below is a list of the The 100 Most Popular Books on The Library Thing.  While I don't necessarily regard The Library Thing as the expert in what books I should have read or be reading, it does look like a fair representation of some classic and some modern must reads.  I do raise an eyebrow and roll my eyes over the Oprah picks, though. Only because I wonder if those novels would be as popular or held with such high esteem if someone who is high in the media eye wasn't promoting the novel? Not that the works would not be worthy... just, well, would they? 

Books in BOLD are those that I've read at some time in my life.  
Books in BLUE are those that I actually sit on my bookshelf, yet unread by me. 
Books in RED are those that appeal to me and I hope to read in the not too distant future.  

1. Harry Potter and the sorcerer's stone by J.K. Rowling (32,484)
2. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (Book 6) by J.K. Rowling (29,939)
3. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (Book 5) by J.K. Rowling (28,728)
4. Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (Book 2) by J.K. Rowling (27,926)
5. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (Book 3) by J.K. Rowling (27,643)
6. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (Book 4) by J.K. Rowling (27,641)
7. The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown (23,266)
8. The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien (21,325)
9. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (Book 7) by J.K. Rowling (20,485)
10. 1984 by George Orwell (19,735)
11. Pride and Prejudice (Bantam Classics) by Jane Austen (19,583)
12. The catcher in the rye by J.D. Salinger (19,082)
13. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee (17,586)
14. The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald (16,210)
15. The lord of the rings by J.R.R. Tolkien (15,483)
16. The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini (14,566)
17. Jane Eyre (Penguin Classics) by Charlotte Bronte (14,449)
18. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon (13,946)
19. Life of Pi by Yann Martel (13,272)
20. Animal Farm by George Orwell (13,091)
21. Angels & demons by Dan Brown (13,089)
22. Brave New World by Aldous Huxley (13,005)
23. Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte (12,777)
24. One Hundred Years of Solitude (Oprah's Book Club) by Gabriel Garcia Marquez (12,634)
25. The Fellowship of the Ring (The Lord of the Rings, Part 1) by J.R.R. Tolkien (12,276)
26. Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden (12,147)
27. The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger (11,976)
28. The Two Towers (The Lord of the Rings, Part 2) by J.R.R. Tolkien (11,512)
29. The Odyssey by Homer (11,483)
30. Catch-22 by Joseph Heller (11,392)
31. Slaughterhouse-five by Kurt Vonnegut (11,360)
32. Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoyevsky (11,257)
33. The return of the king : being the third part of The lord of the rings by J.R.R. Tolkien (11,082)
34. Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury (10,979)
35. American Gods: A Novel by Neil Gaiman (10,823)
36. The chronicles of Narnia by C. S. Lewis (10,603)
37. The hitchhiker's guide to the galaxy by Douglas Adams (10,537) 
38. Lord of the Flies by William Golding (10,435)
39. The lovely bones: a novel by Alice Sebold (10,125) 
40. Ender's Game (Ender, Book 1) by Orson Scott Card (10,092)
41. The Golden Compass (His Dark Materials, Book 1) by Philip Pullman (9,827)
42. Good Omens: The Nice and Accurate Prophecies of Agnes Nutter, Witch by Neil Gaiman (9,745)
43. Dune by Frank Herbert (9,671)
44. Emma by Jane Austen (9,610)
45. Frankenstein by Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley (9,598)
46. The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (Bantam Classics) by Mark Twain (9,593)
47. Anna Karenina (Oprah's Book Club) by Leo Tolstoy (9,433)
48. Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell by Susanna Clarke (9,413)
49. Middlesex: A Novel by Jeffrey Eugenides (9,343) - TBR Pile
50. Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West by Gregory Maguire (9,336)
51. Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov (9,274)
52. The Silmarillion by J.R.R. Tolkien (9,246)
53. The Iliad by Homer (9,153)
54. The Stranger by Albert Camus (9,084)
55. Sense and Sensibility (Penguin Classics) by Jane Austen (9,080)
56. Great Expectations (Penguin Classics) by Charles Dickens (9,027)
57. The Handmaid's Tale: A Novel by Margaret Atwood (8,960)
58. On the Road by Jack Kerouac (8,904)
59. Freakonomics [Revised and Expanded]: A Rogue Economist Explores the Hidden Side of Everything by Steven D. Levitt (8,813)
60. The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint Exupery - (8,764)
61. The lion, the witch and the wardrobe by C. S. Lewis (8,421)
62. A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L'Engle (8,417)
63. Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman (8,368)
64. The Grapes of Wrath (Centennial Edition) by John Steinbeck (8,255)
65. Little Women by Louisa May Alcott (8,214)
66. The Name of the Rose: including Postscript to the Name of the Rose by Umberto Eco (8,191)
67. The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne (8,169)
68. Moby Dick by Herman Melville (8,129)
69. The complete works by William Shakespeare (8,096) 
[The complete works? No. But I have read Romeo & Juliette, Julius Ceasar, MacBeth, Hamlet and I think, King Lear? Not bad, right?] 
70. Guns, Germs, and Steel: The Fates of Human Societies by Jared Diamond (7,843)
71. Me Talk Pretty One Day by David Sedaris (7,834)
72. The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver (7,829) 
73. Hamlet (Folger Shakespeare Library) by William Shakespeare (7,808)
74. Of Mice and Men (Penguin Great Books of the 20th Century) by John Steinbeck (7,807)
75. A Tale of Two Cities (Penguin Classics) by Charles Dickens (7,793)
76. The Alchemist (Plus) by Paulo Coelho (7,710)
77. The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath (7,648)
78. The Picture of Dorian Gray (Barnes & Noble Classics Series) (Barnes & Noble Classics) by Oscar Wilde (7,598)
79. The Elements of Style, Fourth Edition by William Strunk (7,569)
80. Love in the Time of Cholera by Gabriel Garcia Marquez (7,557)
81. The Subtle Knife (His Dark Materials, Book 2) by Philip Pullman (7,534)
82. Atonement: A Novel by Ian McEwan (7,530) TBR Pile
83. The Brothers Karamazov by Fyodor Dostoyevsky (7,512)
84. The Secret Life of Bees by Sue Monk Kidd (7,436)
85. Dracula by Bram Stoker (7,238)
86. Heart of Darkness (Dover Thrift Editions) by Joseph Conrad (7,153)
87. A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess (7,055)
88. Don Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra (7,052)
89. The amber spyglass by Philip Pullman (7,043)
90. A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man (Penguin Classics) by James Joyce (6,933)
91. The Unbearable Lightness of Being: A Novel (Perennial Classics) by Milan Kundera (6,901)
92. Siddhartha by Hermann Hesse (6,899)
93. Neuromancer by William Gibson (6,890)
94. The Canterbury Tales (Penguin Classics) by Geoffrey Chaucer (6,868)
95. Persuasion (Penguin Classics) by Jane Austen (6,862)
96. Anansi Boys by Neil Gaiman (6,841)
97. The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova (6,794)
98. Angela's Ashes: A Memoir by Frank McCourt (6,715)
99. A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius by Dave Eggers (6,708)
100. The Prince by Niccolo Machiavelli (6,697)

So I've only read 27 of the 100 novels listed, but I actually own 12 more that I haven't yet read, and would like to read 5 others.  Not bad for someone whose college studies were far from the liberal arts curriculum. Well, if I may say so myself, anyway.  Not that my college major should have anything to do with the books I read, but whatever. It was a killer time suck. That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

So, how does your reading history compare?