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Booking Through Thursday: National Book Week

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It’s National Book Week. The rules: Grab the closest book to you. Go to page 56. Copy the 5th sentence as your status

(We’ve done something similar to this before, but it’s always fun, so … why not?)

I didn’t even have time to close my eyes.

(Twilight, by Stephenie Meyer)

Maybe fitting, in a way. Several years back, I’d been noticing some facebook posts and other general “chatter” around about something called “Twilight.” I had the presence of mind to ask friends, and found out a bit about it. I later accompanied a friend to see the first film while it was in theatres, but basically gave it no further thought.

I was a Popular Culture major in undergrad, though, so something about the Twilight stuff followed me, until I decided I really ought to “give in” and just read the thing–then, whatever I thought of it, I’d at least be coming at it from actually having given it a chance, from actually having read it, rather than jumping on any bandwagon yay or nay but uninformed.

I wound up buying a mass-market paperback edition just before heading with my mom to a hospital for the weekend, right before I lost my grandmother.

I wound up further continuing with the 2nd and 3rd books (and whether I triggered it or it was simply fortuitous timing, all but had a “book club” going on at work for the series–I started out a book and a half ahead of most of the others reading, but they all finished the series while I was early in book 3). I ultimately listened to the 4th/final book as an audiobook.

A few weeks ago, a local Half-Price Books had a stack of the full-size editions for $1/apiece. Me being the sorta book person I am (I like when books in a series look like they belong together and ARE the same series), I forked over the $1 to snag this copy, so I have the first 2 books in “full size” paperback, and the 3rd in hardback (though I’d probably “trade” the hardback for a paperback, given opportunity).

Back to my original statement: this is fitting. I first started reading the book as I lost my grandmother. And this post/prompt comes along the day after the funeral for another lost loved one.

Of course, all this rambling is mainly to pad out this post. I missed the last few weeks of Booking Through Thursday, but each of those were long enough to be their own posts (at least for today, if you look at my homepage Comic Reviews by Walt the first four posts should be this one as well as the three “catch-up” posts).

Booking Through Thursday [catch-up]: Anticipation

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What’s the last book you were really EXCITED to read?

And, were you excited about it in advance? Or did the excitement bloom while you were reading it?

Are there any books you’re excited about right NOW?

Probably The Perks of Being a Wallflower. At least, I was excited enough to finally purchase the thing, 9 years after having first read it. I’m pretty sure this was my third time through. (Oops…I seem to have left that out of a prior post…)

I had never heard of the book until a friend handed me a copy to borrow back in 2001. This time through, it was in advance as I knew I wanted to RE-read it.

Offhand, can’t say there are any books I’m particularly excited for right NOW. It’s been over 3 months since I purchased The Lost Hero, and while it’s a good book, it hasn’t engaged me as much as I’d hoped–I even took it on VACATION with me, and only read about 60/70 pages–I’m still only about 3/4 through, if that far. I’ve been easily and highly distracted with other stuff, though…and my sister suggested recently that one can’t read much AND have an active Netflix Streaming subscription–which WOULD tend to hold a lot of merit looking at my Netflixing this year.

I’m looking forward to whatever Grisham‘s next “main” novel is, and Brad Meltzer‘s. Probably even Stephen King‘s, though I have yet to get all that far into Under the Dome; I enjoyed Full Dark, No Stars as an audiobook.

Comics-wise, I’m looking forward to getting back into the Ultraverse comics. I’m currently gathering up what issues I own, and intend to track down those I don’t in order to attempt a personal reading project of starting with the June 1993-released issues and read the entire line in publication-order to simulate what the original experience would have been, following the entire line. (This journey is being chronicled in my Ultraverse Revisited blog). I’m also looking forward to the new TMNT comics from IDW, and DC ComicsRetroActive: 1990s – Superman issue.

Booking Through Thursday [catch-up]: Night Owl

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What’s the latest you’ve ever stayed up reading a book? Is staying up late reading a usual thing for you?

I’d have to say it was one night my junior year of college. I was taking a Sci-Fi/Fantasy Literature as Pop Culture course, and after the success of the first Lord of the Rings film, the professor decided to include the entire trilogy as part of the semester’s reading load.

I’d previously read Fellowship of the Ring in high school, and followed along this time. I kept up with the reading for The Two Towers. But by the time we got to Return of the King, I’d fallen a bit behind.

Then came the night before we were due to discuss the final part of the book. To that point, I’d never read the entire trilogy, and did not know how it ended. And I was determined 1. to NOT skip class that day and 2. to NOT have the ending SPOILED for me.

So I pulled an all-nighter, staying up to read something like half of the entire book in virtually one sitting.

I finished the book, and got to class on time. I even stayed awake for class.

The unfortunate thing of it all, though, was that in the end…it wasn’t worth it. I had FORCED the read, which took away the fun. I read out of obligation to the class, rather than simply being drawn into the thing.

Other than that time, I’ve stayed up til probably 2/3 in the morning at points, reading–I know I was up late finishing the 7th Harry Potter book, as people at work were already talking about it, and I didn’t want to get spoiled (again with the semi-forced reading, though–stuff only just with the release of the final movie finally made sense from scenes toward the end). I’ve also been up simply TO read at other points…comics, mainly. Probably for a couple of Grisham’s latest books, and likely also at least one of Brad Meltzer’s.

As I’ve gotten older, though, and work’s pressed in on me…and just lately, life in general–I haven’t really had much that’s been SO much a thing as to keep me up late.

I read as I find or make time, and that’s that. And when something DOES come along that’s compelling enough…well, I just wind up FINDING the time to read over other stuff.

Booking Through Thursday [catch-up]: Repeats

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What’s the first book that you ever read more than once? (I’m assuming there’s at least one.)

What book have you read the most times? And–how many?

I’m not sure, but I’d guess probably something in the vein of Patrick’s Dinosaurs or some other children’s book. Perhaps one of the Boxcar Children books, or maybe a Hardy Boys Casefiles, even.

I know for certain that I’ve read Dragons of Autumn Twilight at least 6-7 times all the way through, and have started it a couple other times. In addition, I’ve seen the animated movie adaptation, and read multiple comics adaptations AND a dramatized audiobook, as well.

I’ve read The Brothers’ War at least 3 times all the way through–the first book in the main Magic: The Gathering series. I’ve read Left Behind (the first/original) at least twice now, in addition to listening to the audiobook, listening to an audio drama, seeing the film, and reading the comic adaptation.

I’ve read the “Greensleeves” trilogy from the ORIGINAL Magic: the Gathering novels at least twice; I’ve read the Aliens: Earth Hive/Nightmare Asylum/Female War trilogy of novelizations at least twice each and pretty sure I’ve read Earth Hive at least one additional time (and I’ve since read the original comics the novels were based on, thanks to Dark Horse‘s Aliens Omnibus vol. 1).

And I’ve read The Death and Life of Superman at least 3 times, and I’ve started it a couple more (plus listened to the audio drama twice now).

…where comics are a whole different thing. I’ve read Batman: A Lonely Place of Dying a number of times; same for Batman: The Dark Knight Returns and Batman: A Death in the Family. I’ve read The Death of Superman more times than I can even remember. Honestly, as I sit here scanning my bookshelves, it’s an overwhelming prospect to try listing all the graphic novels/etc. that I’ve read multiple times.

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