My Giveaway + Announcements

*My first foray into an Author Interview with Andrew Xia Fukuda is up! (Should I do more?)
*My first manga review for Natsume Yuujinchou V.1 - please let me know what you think

Friday, October 8, 2010

Dewey's Readathon: My Booklist

So, I'm going to participate in this for the first time!

Priority Book List (aka I will finish them this readathon EVEN IF IT KILLS ME *_*):
Coeur de Jade, lame du dragon : Tome 1 - Le secret des masques par Kristoff Valla (trans. Jade Heart, The Dragon's Blade: Book 1 - The Secret of the Masks)
La prochaine fois par Marc Levy (trans. Next Time)

Other French Language Long Narratives:
La traversée du continent par Michel Tremblay (The Crossing of the Continent)
Les liaisons dangereuses par Pierre Choderlos de Laclos (Dangerous Liaisons)
The Sky Crawlers par Hiroshi Mori (A Japanese-to-French translated novel)
La Trêve par Primo Levi (The Truce - An Italian-to-French translated memoir)

Short French Language fictive works:
Contes par Charles Perrault ([Fairy] Tales)
Boys Next Door par Kaori Yuki (manga)
Kaine par Kaori Yuki (manga)
Neji par Kaori Yuki (manga)
The Royal Doll Orchestra - Tome 1 + 2 par Kaori Yuki (manga)

English Novels:
A Reluctant Cinderella by Alison Bond
Agnes Grey by Anne Bronte
Other possible netgalleys I've received from publishers, etc.

The plan for this readathon is for me to read as much of my french novels as possible. The English novels are really just there for a placeholder in case I actually finish all these books before the 24 hours period (not likely, but you never know). Or, if, you know, I hit a certain point in my readathon wherein I start thinking I CAN'T READ ANOTHER DAMN FRENCH WORD, I have other options open to me, like the healing sight of the English word and its soothing presence of comprehensibility, or something.

Also, I may possible cheat on this 24 hour readathon, because well, this weekend the weather happens to be nice, and considering I've been living over a week of dreary rain, I fully intend on being out in the warm sun as much as possible. That would most evidently cut down on my reading time, so I may start before dawn and basically squeeze in reading time when it's dark out. Also, I intend on reading literally 24 hours, even if it isn't consecutive. Which means, let say I read for 3 hours and then took an hour's break - I won't count that one hour and consider what I've read as 3 hours in the 24 hours readathon scheme.

I will probably update this post with my reading updates on this readathon journey, so as not to bother those who have me on their feeds or google reader with a bombardment of spam.

Anyhow, is anyone else participating in this readathon? Are there any other participants planning on reading in their non-native tongue? I'd love to hear from everyone and good luck to all the participants! =D

Update 1

So it's Hour 11 in this readathon and I think I'm going to have to take back what I said about reading literally 24 hours and just count whatever I read during this 24 hour period as what I'll end up with for the challenge.

I've finished my copy of La prochaine fois, which took me 2 hours and 41 minutes, not counting all the loooooong breaks I took in between reading this. (It got to a point wherein I basically welcomed distractions from my roommates. This book! So mind-numbing!) It was such a slow read for me, considering its tiny page number. (less than 300 pages) I'm not understanding the great popularity of this Marc Levy author? The Eternal Tragic Love romance mostly induced eye-rolling reactions the whole time I spent reading this book (I do like reincarnation stories, but the way it was handled here was just so CHEESY and ughhhhhh), and I suspect if I let my brain think harder about the roles of women in this book, I'd be enraged. (Women are manipulative evil crones! Unless they're your love interest-in which case she will sigh and pine away at hero's awesomeness and then waste tragically away and die in your arms as the narrative continues to focus about how this is so Tragic For Our Male Hero! The faaaaaaaail, and the whole treatment of justifying cheating fiancee's actions, blaaaaaaaaaaaaah) But as such, I'm more mildly annoyed than anything and try not to think too much about it while I was reading. Ah well, this was a book a friend lent me, so at least I can 1) finally return it 2) honestly say I've finally given Marc Levy a shot (and will probably never read anything else by him) and 3) practiced my french.

Was 50 minutes into reading Coeur de Jade and I've reached a point wherein I'm reading the words and not even understand what it's saying. Probably because it's like, 12 am as I write this. Also this being an action thriller, a lot of the fight scenes require that mental visualization thing that I've never been really good at, and it being in french just sucks out all my brain effort into this gooey mush.

Haha, so basically out of the 11 hours so far I only spent about 4 hours reading. Honestly the rest of the time I spent either eating or hanging around outside because YAY FINALLY GOOD WEATHER.

Will now go back to see if I can read Coeur de Jade but if now I'll pop open my Perrault's fairy tale collection or the manga I have lying around.

Update 2: Hour 12

Mid-Event Survey:
1. What are you reading right now?
- I'm on Contes de Perrault.
2. How many books have you read so far?
- Well, I finished Marc Levy's La prochaine fois, was in the middle of reading Coeur de Jade until I decided to drop it for something lighter. Hopefully I'll get back to finishing it before this readathon is over.
3. What book are you most looking forward to for the second half of the Read-a-thon?
- Honestly if I manage to finish Coeur de Jade by the end of this I'll be quite content.
4. Did you have to make any special arrangements to free up your whole day?
- ... Actually I... kinda allowed myself distractions? Ironically this Saturday was the first sign of nice weather in a week and I couldn't say no to going out to the park. Also the first book I trudged through was such a painfully slow read that everytime someone knocked on my door I'd be like 'Why yes, dear roomate, come in and tell me more about distraction things! Anything if it means I don't have to read this book!' So... yeah. 8D ^^;;;;;;;
5. Have you had many interruptions? How did you deal with those?
- Kind of covered it in #4 but basically I just let them happen. When I found out today was going to be good weather though I did make an attempt to read before the start time to make up for the time I knew I was going to spend outside, but I didn't get far due to not liking my book, etc.
6. What surprises you most about the Read-a-thon, so far?
- Actually, I was surprised to hear that there is a French Readathon? I didn't know and if I did, I probably would have registered for that one instead. But oh well. Also the whole cheerleading business is very nice. I didn't expect it so when I saw all the nice comments on this post I was real happy. =d
7. Do you have any suggestions for how to improve the Read-a-thon next year?
- lol not really? It's been good so far.
8. What would you do differently, as a Reader or a Cheerleader, if you were to do this again next year?
- Choose less novels, more short stories.
9. Are you getting tired yet?
- sooooooooooo tired. I'm thinking of napping a little after this meme.
10. Do you have any tips for other Readers or Cheerleaders, something you think is working well for you that others may not have discovered?
- haha actually I think I'm really not in the position of giving others advice this time around? Perhaps when I'm a more "seasoned" readathon-er, I'll have something to contribute here.

Update 3: Hour 23

The final stretch. I finished Coeur de Jade about an hour ago, so I got everything I wanted finished on my Priority List! Yay!

At first I thought of using the time left (besides taking the time to shower/eat/daily necessity things) to just finish off my Contes collection or maybe start a manga, but at around Hour 19 there was a Non-fiction challenge and I thought I'd crack open my copy of La Trêve. Man, I forgot how eloquent Primo Levi was. Thoughtful, and humble with his select word choice and cuts through all flowery language and is deeply moving. This is the kind of book I'd like to read through slowly.

Anyhow, meme:

1. Have you ever read a memoir/true story (Or book 'based on true events'?)
-I've read a couple, both for an outside of class.

2. If so, what was the title/author?
- Si c'est un homme by Primo Levi was the most recent one that comes to mind (I read this for class). It was about the author's experience in a concentration camp. I loved it so much I bought the sequel to it on my own time. For non-class readings, there was a time when I scoured my library for every Genghis Kan biography available. I especially liked the ones that focused on his years as Temujin. I read Rape of Nanking about two years ago and am still haunted by that book till this day.

3. What what it about?
-lol kind of answered this already in #2

4. Did you like it? Would you recommend it?
-See #2

5. How many have you read?
- *shrugs* I think I read memoirs about once every one or two years? I'm usually more of the documenting historical events non0fiction reader.

6. Why or what made you want to read it?
-For Si c'est un homme, well, it was for class. I can't quite explain my fascination with Genghis Khan. Like all conquerors he committed terrible atrocities, but he had like, this grand vision, the way he thought about himself and his place in the world and I was just lured in by his story. I mean, you know how some people are like, fascinated by Napoleon (my dad is one of those people, lol) or Alexander the Great or something? Genghis Khan was that kind of person for me. Also I read The Rape of Nanking because it was the summer and I found a copy lying around my house.

7. What was the saddest/scariest one you read?
The Rape of Nanking for sure. EVERYONE, READ IT.

8. Did it have a 'happy ending'?
- No

9. When choosing a memoir/true story, do you look for a certain kind? ( i.e. historical diary, inspirational like The Freedom Writer's Diary, Christian, non Christian)
- Not particularly. With memoirs I mostly go by recommendations from others.


Jan von Harz said...

Hey just stopping by to tell you I am rooting for you during the read-a-thon. I will be checking in throughout the 24 hours with words of encouragement.

yuan said...

@Jan von Harz

Thanks! That's so sweet. C'est gentil. =D

Julie said...

Good luck on the readathon! I will NOT be reading in anything other than my native tongue, because I wouldn't understand enough of any of it to make sense! You're a brave brave soul!

Julie @ Knitting and Sundries

Meredith said...

I miss reading in French; it's been too long since my French 6 class and the time I've lived in Europe!

Remember, C.S. Lewis said, "We read to know that we are not alone," and today all of all days, we stand together. Have a joyous and blessed time!

Amanda said...

I hope you have a great readathon!

PS - if you turn off word verification for the day, the cheerleaders will love you forever.

Anonymous said...

Sending you happy thoughts for readathon! Looks like you have such a good variety of reads, so I hope you're off to a great start. Bonne chance! (I HOPE that is good luck in French, right?) :)

-- Anna (another of your cheerleaders!)

Cass said...

Let books be your dining table,
And you shall be full of delights
Let them be your mattress
And you shall sleep restful nights.

Jan von Harz said...

Hour 11

Your stamina is dazzling.
Your fortitude hot stuff.
You are a mighty Reader, and you’re tough, tough, tough.

Hope you are enjoying the read-a-thon.

Julie said...

Since you are reading away the day for the readathon, I’m sending you a quote for your encouragement:

There are two motives for reading a book; one, that you enjoy it; the other, that you can boast about it.
~ Bertrand Russell ~

Jan von Harz said...


Hang in there you are doing great!

Anonymous said...

Je voudrais lire en francais! I need to buy a reader and just work at it! You might like this little video, it's cute!