ANNOUNCEMENT: New Meme - Book Beginnings on Friday. This is a new meme that I have decided to start entitled Book Beginnings on Friday. I hope that you all join in.
At this stage I do not have a button for this meme, being someone that is very technologically challenged. If there is anyone out there that wants to participate in this meme and has the skills to make a button, I would really appreciate it :-)
Book Beginnings on Friday is a meme hosted by Becky at Page Turners. Anyone can participate; just share the opening sentence of your current read, making sure that you include the title and author so others know what you're reading. If you like, share with everyone why you do, or do not, like the sentence.
Thank you to Rose City Reader for giving me the idea for this meme. On Rose City Reader you will find 'Opening Sentences of the Day' so please have a look at this wonderful blog for further opportunities to share opening sentences.
The Portrait of A Lady by Henry James
"Under certain circumstances there are few hours in life more agreeable that the hour dedicated to the ceremony known as afternoon tea".
I think this is a really really wonderful way to start a book. It pulls me in straight away, and I couldn't agree with it more!
Place a link to your Book Beginnings on Friday post in the Mr Linky below or alternatively leave a comment.
This week I will participating in Booking Through Thursday from 18 March 2010 and 25 March 2010.
Which do you prefer? Lurid, fruity prose, awash in imagery and sensuous textures and colors? Or straight-forward, clean, simple prose?
Definitely lurid, fruit prose, awash with imagery and sensuous textures and colours. I love language that I get lost in, language that is totally descriptive and full of depth. That's not to say that simple, straight forward language can't create the same quality story that sensuous writing can, but for me it is usually that more descriptive style of writing that really pulls me into the story.
Books and authors that come to mind as demonstrating the style that I like are books by Isabel Allende, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier, The Lacuna by Barbara Kingsolver and I am sure that there are many many more. I like the language itself to form part of the story if that makes sense, and for me, the more simple straight forward writing can't do that in the way that more sensual language can.
25 March 2010 - coming soon
Here are the guidelines: Grab your current read Open to a random page Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!) Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!
The Portrait of a Lady by Henry James
"These words were uttered with a breadth of candour that was like the embrace of strong arms - that was like the fragrance straight in her face, and by his clean, breathing lips, of she knew not what strange gardens, what charged airs. She would have given her little finger at that moment to feel strongly and simply the impulse to answer: 'Lord Warburton, it's impossible for me to do better in this wonderful world, I think, than commit myself, very gratefully, to your loyalty'.
I absolutely love reading old books like this, and so far this one is wonderful.
Book Beginnings on Friday:
Sorry for the shameless advertising, but I also wanted to let people know about a new meme I am hosting called Book Beginnings on Friday, the aim of which is to share the first sentence of your current read with everyone. You can see Week 1's post by clicking here and Week 2's post by clicking here. Check it out this Friday.
- Lights Camera Blog Action (Fridays) because I love learning all about other bloggers out there,
- A Blast from the Past (Sundays) because I love reliving books from the past, and
- Book Beginnings on Friday (Fridays) because I have a thing for the first line of books and I like reading the first lines that other people post.
I will post about book and blog related issues like I did in the Thoughtful Thursday posts, but only when they occur to me, not every Thursday. If I read a short story, I will review it in the normal course of things and not for a special feature. Similarly, if I feel like telling you all about a wonderful author I have discovered, then I will, but not every second Tuesday.
I have decided that I need to go back to basics a little bit more, and focus that little bit more on my reading than on my blogging.
I might reinstitute these features at a later stage, but for now I will say goodbye to them. I hope that no one is too disappointed, but I suspect that it is mainly me that will feel any effect of these missing features :-)
I can’t really remember what made me started reading Treasure Island. I vaguely remember just having a flick through the various ebook options on the application I use (Stanza) and seeing this one and deciding to read it.
The narrator, Jim Hawkins, is a young boy who lives in a Village Inn run by his parents. His life becomes adventuresome when an old Pirate, Billy Bones, comes to lodge with them. Through very odd circumstances, Billy Bones suffers a stroke after receiving the Black Spot, and Jim Hawkins and his mother come into possession of a treasure map and are hotly pursued by Pirates until the Pirates are scared off by the coming of some townspeople. Jim Hawkins gives the map to Squire Trelawney and Dr Livesy, and they all then plan a big trip to Treasure Island in search of the treasure.
A ship is bought and Trelawney hires Captain Smollett and Long John Silver as cook. Long John then hires the rest of the crew. Despite some early signs that should have lead to suspicion, the ship sets sail for the Island. Unfortunately, Jim uncovers a plot to mutiny after the treasure is bought onto the ship.
The rest of the story details how the crew split into two, and end up stranded on Treasure Island fighting for life and treasure.
I really wish that I had enjoyed Treasure Island more than I did. I think what put me off was mostly the language that was used. Sometimes it’s difficult to get through to the story when the language is so old fashioned and dense, and this was one of those books for me. The language took something away from the adventure from me. I spent too much time focusing on what I was reading, which prevented me from really getting into it.
Something I did find interesting was this idea of honesty and loyalty that was so prominent throughout the story. At one stage Jim Hawkins is held captive by the enemy pirates and he gives his word to Silver that he will not attempt to escape. Then, despite being given the perfect opportunity to escape, he does not because he has given his word not to. This type of loyalty is totally foreign to me – I find it difficult to comprehend why someone would not escape captivity other than because they promised their captor not to? What do you owe your captor? Why would your word mean more to you than the opportunity to take flight when faced with death? Something similar that puzzled me was this – why did Jim seem so set in keeping his word to Silver when he happily broke his word to his own friends by abandoning them in the first place?
There is more to Treasure Island that what I have discussed here, but I think that this is the kind of book that you have to read yourself to know what you will get out of it.
What kind of read is it?
A challenging read, but a shorter one than you might expect.
Do I recommend it?
Not really to be honest.
Do I recommend that you buy it?
No, just get it from the library or a friend, unless you are a collector of classics.
It's Monday, what are you reading? is now hosted by Sheila at One Person's Journey Through a World of Books. It is a chance for us to share with other book bloggers what we have just finished reading, what we are currently reading and what we are reading next.
A Blast From the Past is a meme for people to review a book that they read before they started blogging. It doesn't have to be a favourite, it might be that you didn't enjoy it. It is about sharing a book from your past with others.
The Hobbit by JRR Tolkien
I love love love anything Tolkien. I read The Hobbit as a child in primary school. I borrowed a beautiful copy from the school library that had lovely big illustrations. As an adult I made sure that I purchased the same copy that I read back then in primary school. I knew that I wanted to own it and that I wanted to own that copy with the beautiful illustrations.
I don't even really know what to say about this book. Its Tolkien. Does that say it all? I love the adventure. I love that although it is fantasy, it feels like history. I love how rich the characters are. I love how rich the countryside is. I love how rich the story is. I love everything about it.
I want to be able to say more, but I feel like this book is beyond words for me. I hope that if you haven't tried reading this book, you do now.
Please join in by leaving a comment or leaving a link to your own Blast from the Past in the Mr Linky below.