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Books read in 2008

First time I've posted one of these, I think. I used to keep a reading log by scribbling the author, title, and (usually) a grade on a calendar the day I finished the book, then last year got most of these entered into a spreadsheet and moved the continuing log to a spiral notebook. Looks like I made a first attempt at a book log in 1996 and abandoned it, then hit on this system in 1999 and have used it since.

Generally these are books read for the first time--I don't record re-reads, unless I forgot that I'd read it before until somewhere in the re-read. Mostly. The other reason for not recording re-reads is that often those are not a full read-through--I go for favorite bits, or a certain scene, or whatever the mood needs. Grades are wholly subjective and, I'm sure, inconsistent. Sometimes a book that is really a "not for me" book will get an A and a note to not read that author again, other times it will be a D and the same note. I'm not enough of a self-analyst to know why. All comments about how I do this are not absolutes, and are subject to change at my whim...

I'm always reading, so the gaps in dates represent re-reads. Fill 'em in by guessing at titles by Bujold, Lee & Miller, Sayers, Nora Roberts, Balogh, and many others--and often the gap means I'm stressed and needing comfort reads, not new stuff.

Now let's see how bad the formatting looks if I just paste 3 columns from the Excel file in here. 119 entries, but note that I put novellas and short stories from anthologies as separate entries.

1/1/08 Briggs, Patricia Dragon Bones A
1/2/08 Pierce, Tamora and Liebe, Timothy White Tiger 1-6 B-
1/2/08 Gilman, Laura Anne "Palimpsest" B-
1/4/08 Quick, Amanda Second Sight C
1/5/08 Miller, Linda Lael The Last Chance Café B-
1/9/08 Howard, Linda Up Close and Dangerous A-
1/10/08 Colwin, Laurie More Home Cooking A+
1/11/08 Polaccio, Patricia Mrs. Katz and Tush A
1/13/08 Bujold, Lois McMaster The Sharing Knife: Passage A
1/15/08 Miller, Linda Lael The Man from Stone Creek B
1/17/08 Hensperger, Beth Not Your Mother's Slow Cooker Cookbook C
1/17/08 Weisman, Alan The World Without Us B-
1/19/08 Roberts, Nora Blood Brothers B
1/19/08 McCaffrey, Anne and McCaffrey, Todd Dragon Harper D
2/1/08 Butcher, Jim Furies of Calderon B+
2/2/08 Abé, Shana The Smoke Theif B+
2/3/08 Gaffney, Patricia To Have and To Hold C
2/8/08 Lackey, Mercedes Reserved for the Cat B-
2/9/08 Chima, Cinda Williams The Wizard Heir A-
2/25/08 Selznick, Brian The Invention of Hugo Cabret B+
2/26/08 Kelly, Carla Miss Grimsley's Oxford Career C-
2/28/08 McCaffrey, Anne No One Noticed the Cat B
3/1/08 Beverley, Jo Lady Beware B-
3/2/08 DiCamillo, Kate The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane A
3/12/08 Russell, S. Thomas Under Enemy Colors A-
3/13/08 Schlitz, Laura Amy Good Masters! Sweet Ladies! Voices from a Medieval Village A
3/14/08 Lee, Sharon and Miller, Steve Dragon Tide A
3/15/08 Borchert, Don Free For All: Oddballs, Geeks, and Ganstas in the Public Library B
3/16/08 Allen, Sarah Addison Garden Spells A
3/18/08 Carr, Robyn Just Over the Mountain B+
3/19/08 Carr, Robyn Down By The River B+
3/27/08 Darcy, Claire Cecily C-
3/28/08 Harris, Charlaine Grave Sight A
3/28/08 Harris, Charlaine Grave Surprise A
4/5/08 Robb, J.D. Strangers in Death A-
4/7/08 Russell, Mary Doria Dreamers of the Day B
4/9/08 Harris, Charlaine An Ice Cold Grave A
4/10/08 Balogh, Mary Simply Perfect B+
4/19/08 Simonson, Sheila The Bar Sinister B-
4/20/08 Beverley, Jo "The Dragon and the Virgin Princess" in Dragon Lovers B-
5/2/08 Beverley, Jo A Lady's Secret A+
5/2/08 Brent, Madeleine Stranger at Wildings B
5/9/08 Owens, Robin D. Heart Mate C
5/11/08 Owens, Robin D. Heart Thief C+
5/12/08 Bourne, Joanna The Spymaster's Lady A+
5/17/08 Roberts, Nora The Hollow B-
5/19/08 Moon, Modean From This Day Forward -- SIM 739 C-
5/31/08 Meyer, Stephenie Twilight B
6/4/08 Gracie, Anne The Perfect Waltz B-
6/6/08 Riordan, Rick The Lightning Theif A-
6/7/08 Bishop, Toby Airs Beneath the Moon B
6/7/08 Riordan, Rick The Sea of Monsters B
6/9/08 Riordan, Rick The Titan's Curse B
6/12/08 Riordan, Rick The Battle of the Labyrinth B+
6/14/08 Enrights, Elizabeth The Saturdays B
6/19/08 Sfar, Joan The Rabbi's Cat B
6/20/08 Ingram, Jay The Barmaid's Brain and Other Strange Tales from Science B+
6/22/08 Lee, Elsie The Wicked Guardian A
6/24/08 Lee, Elsie An Eligible Connection A+
6/29/08 Lee, Elsie The Nabob's Widow A
7/1/08 Taubes, Gary Good Calories, Bad Calories A-
7/6/08 Ursu, Anne The Shadow Thieves B
7/11/08 Lee, Elsie Second Season B-
7/18/08 Ketchum, Richard M. Saratoga: Turning Point of America's Revolutionary War A
8/1/08 Riordan, Rick Big Red Tequila C-
8/2/08 Swendson, Shanna Enchanted, Inc. B-
8/3/08 McCaffrey, Anne "Ever the Twain" in A Gift of Dragons C
8/5/08 Swendson, Shanna Once Upon Stilettos B-
8/12/08 Flewelling, Lynn Shadows Return A-
8/14/08 Owens, Robin D. Heart Duel B-
8/15/08 Owens, Robin D. Heart Choice B-
8/16/08 Welch, Ronald Captain of Foot B
8/27/08 Lowell, Elizabeth Blue Smoke and Murder B+
8/31/08 Prineas, Sarah The Magic Thief Book One B+
9/1/08 Scalzi, John Old Man's War A
9/16/08 Metzger, Barbara Lord Heartless D
9/9/08 Lee, Rachel "A Soldier for All Seasons" in Holiday Heroes, Sil Rom Suspense 1487 B-
9/9/08 Mann, Catherine "Christmas at His Command" in Holiday Heroes, Sil Rom Suspense 1487 C
9/12/08 Lee, Rachel "I'll Be Home" in A Soldier's Christmas C+
9/13/08 Lee, Rachel "The Dream Marine" in The Heart's Command C
9/13/08 Lovelace, Merline "Undercover Operation" in The Heart's Command C
9/17/08 Lee, Rachel A Soldier's Homecoming C
9/20/08 Scalzi, John The Ghost Bridages A
9/21/08 Lee, Rachel The Catch of Conard County C-
9/24/08 Feehan, Christine Turbulent Sea B-
9/25/08 Andrews, Mary Kay Deep Dish C
9/28/08 McKenna, Lindsay "To Love and Protect" in The Heart's Command D
9/28/08 Lovelace, Merline "A Bridge for Christmas" in A Soldier's Christmas B
9/30/08 Mann, Catherine "The Wingman's Angel" in A Soldier's Christmas C+
10/2/08 Feehan, Christine Lair of the Lion C-
10/3/08 Farmer, Nancy The Ear, the Eye, and the Arm A
10/5/08 Bujold, Lois McMaster The Sharing Knife: Horizon A+
10/11/08 Alexie, Sherman The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian A
10/15/08 Lackey, Mercedes Foundation B
10/17/08 Feehan, Christine Dark Curse B
10/19/08 Roberts, Nora Tribute B+
10/20/08 Thomas, Sherry Delicious B
10/28/08 Durgin, Doranna Hidden Steel B
10/31/08 Zelazny, Roger A Night in the Lonesome October B+
11/3/08 Mallery, Susan Sweet Talk C
11/7/08 Bird, Jessica Leaping Hearts C
11/9/08 Stein, Garth The Art of Racing in the Rain A
11/15/08 Picoult, Jody My Sister's Keeper A
11/17/08 Feehan, Christine Wild Rain C
11/18/08 Roberts, Nora The Return of Rafe MacKade (SIM 631) B-
11/20/08 Shinn, Sharon Fortune and Fate A-
11/25/08 McKinley, Robin Chalice A-
11/30/08 Roberts, Nora The Pride of Jared MacKade (SSE 1000) B-
11/30/08 Roberts, Nora The Heart of Devin MacKade (SIM 697) B-
11/30/08 Roberts, Nora The Fall of Shane MacKade (SSE 1022) B
12/1/08 Mallery, Susan Sweet Spot B-
12/2/08 Breathed, Berkeley Pete & Pickles A
12/3/08 Hornby, Nick Slam C-
12/3/08 Mallery, Susan Sweet Trouble C-
12/17/08 Lee, Sharon and Miller, Steve "Shadow Partner" in Eidolon (chapbook) A
12/17/08 Lee, Sharon and Miller, Steve "Persistence" in Eidolon (chapbook) A
12/19/08 Owens, Robin D. Heart Quest B-
12/23/08 Owens, Robin D. Heart Dance B-
12/24/08 Gray, Nicholas Stuart Grimbold's Other World B


( 9 comments — Leave a comment )
Jan. 1st, 2009 11:50 pm (UTC)
Huh. I've read exactly two of the books on that list, both of them for the first time in 2008. (There are several that I aim to read, though.)
Jan. 2nd, 2009 01:39 am (UTC)
For volume the selection was heavy on the romance, with a good dose of YA fiction. The SF can be a little more toothsome, but my reading in general is light relaxation--the occasional non-fiction titles in there are anomalies.
Jan. 2nd, 2009 12:23 am (UTC)
I've read 12, but recognize many more that folks have talked about and that are in my TBR. I'm really good about cataloging my books, not so good about writing down when I read them and what I thought of them. I promised myself I'd do better this year. :) Maybe I'll just keep a running tab on LJ.

The Elsie Lees sound like something I may want to check out!
Jan. 2nd, 2009 01:49 am (UTC)
I'm a little surprised that we don't have more overlap, as I'm getting lots of recommendations from places where you hang out, too. :)

Some sort of paper log seems to be necessary for me, because I don't always have access to the computer when I finish a book. If I don't write it down immediately, I tend to forget it completely.

I really liked the Elsie Lee Regencies--there's still one I haven't gotten hold of (Prior Betrothal) that I hope PaperBackSwap will come up with. If only she had written more!
Jan. 2nd, 2009 03:16 am (UTC)
I have about 10 more or so in my TBR and a couple I've started, but not finished yet. I counted each of the Mann/Lee/Lovelace anthologies only once in my 12 and a few of the potential overlap didn't happen because they were spy stories and I don't like those, so I've been holding out on the Bourne for example and the Beverley, but those would otherwise be authors I would read.

Quite a number of the authors you listed (Roberts, Howard, LL Miller, etc.) I used to read, but don't any longer. I don't like Howard's suspense books and the one LL Miller I tried had a ghost in it, which nixed that right away. I do have 2 or 3 of the McKade books in my TBR, but again the only Roberts I tried in ages was a woowoo tale (Enchanted), which didn't just not appeal, it actively repelled me.

I haven't gotten the new Lee/Miller chapbook yet. I'm keeping that for March for the convention as a belated b-day present to myself. :)

I don't read paranormals which takes care of the Briggs, who sounds like an author I would enjoy, if she wrote a different subject matter.

Robyn Carr made me so mad when I read book 3, I think, of the Virgin River series, I was literally spitting and immensely glad I checked it out of the online library and didn't pay any money for it. It was doubly disappointing because I have one of her old books which I enjoyed a lot. Right now I can't remember for sure what got me so riled up, but I get a really negative reaction when I hear Carr's name, so it must have been something significant. :)

It will be fun to see if we overlap more this year!
Jan. 2nd, 2009 01:02 am (UTC)
So, are you going to read the rest of Enright's Melendy books? Those were childhood favorites of mine, and I still love them.

And what did you think of the MacKades, who are my favorites of Nora's oeuvre?
Jan. 2nd, 2009 01:57 am (UTC)
I do plan to read the rest of the Melendy books, and have a reminder on my library account to get another one next time I'm in the mood. Though I'm not sure they have them all.

The MacKades weren't among my favorites of Nora's, and I think these are some I read when they first came out (back when I read almost every book in a number of category romance lines) but they didn't stick with me at all. My notes column (which I didn't paste in the log as most books don't have comments) says "middling Roberts".

The Chesapeake books are among my favorites, though if I were home and could go stare at the 3 shelves of keeper Roberts (not counting the JD Robb's) I'd add in some more. Oh, the McGregor books, some of them. And the Cordinia books. And the triplets, the dancer, the actress, and the horse-breeder/mom--O'Hurleys, that's it. MacKades for some reason didn't strike a chord.
Jan. 2nd, 2009 03:34 am (UTC)
I'd be very surprised if even the smallest library didn't have a complete set of Enright, if only because she won the Newbery for Thimble Summer (an early work, and not up to the standards of either the Melendys or the Gone-Away Lake books IMHO).

An interesting assessment of the MacKade books. One of the reasons I like Nora as well as I do is at its best in those stories -- Nora is really good at writing books with supernatural elements without making the protagonists vampires or werewolves or whatever themselves (the reason her Morrigan trilogy bombed as badly as it did was because she did make the heros and heroines supernatural beings, IMHO). Oddly enough, though, in spite of the ghost, I'm not overly fond of the Chesapeake books. I like her two Irish trilogies better, and the Three Sisters Island books (in spite of, or maybe because of, the heroines being witches), and the Key books. And the new trilogy (the Seven). Oh, and the Stanislaskis -- esp. Waiting for Nick.

But not the flower books particularly, or most of her early work, or most of the MacGregors (Ian's story in The MacGregor Grooms is an exception). Or the Dream trilogy. Or the O'Hurleys [g].

So we seem to be at polar opposites on that score. Interesting.
Jan. 2nd, 2009 04:20 am (UTC)
I too am surprised that we only have 6 books in common, & 3 of them you lent me! Looking for Prior Betrothal also, if I find it, I'll lend.
( 9 comments — Leave a comment )


Nancy Barber

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