I made a virtual version of album liner notes for my record. Because it’s one thing I’ve always loved about CDs and Vinyl records – being able to pore over the pages of lyrics while listening, or look at the photographs, see who the musicians are on each song, and read the little thank you notes. It’s something that’s less easy to do when you’re buying music digitally. 

You can listen to the album, investigate individual songs and read about the recording experience, or what inspired the song in some cases. There’s behind the scenes photos, and I’ll be adding even more videos over time too. Grab a cuppa and check it out as it is now. 

I made a virtual version of album liner notes for my record. Because it’s one thing I’ve always loved about CDs and Vinyl records – being able to pore over the pages of lyrics while listening, or look at the photographs, see who the musicians are on each song, and read the little thank you notes. It’s something that’s less easy to do when you’re buying music digitally. 

You can listen to the album, investigate individual songs and read about the recording experience, or what inspired the song in some cases. There’s behind the scenes photos, and I’ll be adding even more videos over time too. Grab a cuppa and check it out as it is now. 

Cross off what you’ve read (Average read is six)

Ah why not. These lists are always a bit odd and don’t really reflect what I do read.

Also “average is six” ? What? Is that completely made up? Who has averaged this out? What was their sample that gave them that average? 

But still, here goes nothing: 

Pride and Prejudice - Jane Austen
The Lord of the Rings - JRR Tolkien
Jane Eyre - Charlotte Bronte
Harry Potter series - JK Rowling
To Kill a Mockingbird - Harper Lee
The Bible - Council of Nicea
Wuthering Heights - Emily Bronte
Nineteen Eighty Four - George Orwell
His Dark Materials - Philip Pullman
Great Expectations - Charles Dickens
Little Women - Louisa M Alcott
Tess of the D’Urbervilles - Thomas Hardy
Catch 22 - Joseph Heller
Rebecca - Daphne Du Maurier (started it. Hated the main character so much I’ve stopped, bookmarked, and it makes me angry thinking about it. I just want to reach into the book and talk some sense to her.)
The Hobbit - JRR Tolkien
Birdsong - Sebastian Faulk
Catcher in the Rye - JD Salinger
The Time Traveller’s Wife - Audrey Niffenegger (in my bag. It’s next on my list)
Middlemarch - George Eliot
Gone With The Wind - Margaret Mitchell
The Great Gatsby - F Scott Fitzgerald
Bleak House - Charles Dickens
War and Peace - Leo Tolstoy
The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy - Douglas Adams
Brideshead Revisited - Evelyn Waugh (sitting in my to-read pile)
Crime and Punishment - Fyodor Dostoyevsky
Grapes of Wrath - John Steinbeck
Alice in Wonderland - Lewis Carroll
The Wind in the Willows - Kenneth Grahame
Anna Karenina - Leo Tolstoy
David Copperfield - Charles Dickens
Chronicles of Narnia - CS Lewis
Emma - Jane Austen
Persuasion - Jane Austen
The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe - CS Lewis  (why is this here as well as the Narnia series? )
The Kite Runner - Khaled Hosseini
Captain Corelli’s Mandolin - Louis De Bernieres
Memoirs of a Geisha - Arthur Golden
Winnie the Pooh - AA Milne
Animal Farm - George Orwell
The Da Vinci Code - Dan Brown
One Hundred Years of Solitude - Gabriel Garcia Marquez (it’s in the to-read stack right now)
A Prayer for Owen Meaney - John Irving
The Woman in White - Wilkie Collins
Anne of Green Gables - LM Montgomery
Far From The Madding Crowd - Thomas Hardy
The Handmaid’s Tale - Margaret Atwood
Lord of the Flies - William Golding
Atonement - Ian McEwan
Life of Pi - Yann Martel
Dune - Frank Herbert
Cold Comfort Farm - Stella Gibbons
Sense and Sensibility - Jane Austen
A Suitable Boy - Vikram Seth
The Shadow of the Wind - Carlos Ruiz Zafon
A Tale Of Two Cities - Charles Dickens
Brave New World - Aldous Huxley
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time - Mark Haddon
Love In The Time Of Cholera - Gabriel Garcia Marquez
Of Mice and Men - John Steinbeck
Lolita - Vladimir Nabokov
The Secret History - Donna Tartt
The Lovely Bones - Alice Sebold
Count of Monte Cristo - Alexandre Dumas
On The Road - Jack Kerouac
Jude the Obscure - Thomas Hardy
Bridget Jones’s Diary - Helen Fielding
Midnight’s Children - Salman Rushdie 
Moby Dick - Herman Melville
Oliver Twist - Charles Dickens
Dracula - Bram Stoker
The Secret Garden - Frances Hodgson Burnett
Notes From A Small Island - Bill Bryson
Ulysses - James Joyce 
The Bell Jar - Sylvia Plath
Swallows and Amazons - Arthur Ransome
Germinal - Emile Zola
Vanity Fair - William Makepeace Thackeray
Possession - AS Byatt
A Christmas Carol - Charles Dickens
Cloud Atlas - David Mitchell
The Color Purple - Alice Walker
The Remains of the Day - Kazuo Ishiguro
Madame Bovary - Gustave Flaubert
A Fine Balance - Rohinton Mistry
Charlotte’s Web - EB White
The Five People You Meet In Heaven - Mitch Albom
Adventures of Sherlock Holmes - Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
The Faraway Tree Collection - Enid Blyton
Heart of Darkness - Joseph Conrad
The Little Prince - Antoine De Saint-Exupery
The Wasp Factory - Iain Banks
Watership Down - Richard Adams
A Confederacy of Dunces - John Kennedy Toole (attempted)
A Town Like Alice - Nevil Shute
The Three Musketeers - Alexandre Dumas
Hamlet - William Shakespeare
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory - Roald Dahl
Les Miserables - Victor Hugo

It’s odd - there’s a lot on that list that I’ve not read, but I’ve read something else from the same author. Like, we had to study Steinbeck’s “The Pearl” when I was in Junior Cert, and I had to read Hardy’s tedioius “Mayor Of Casterbridge” for my Leaving Cert.

I always wonder where the list arises from - some “best seller” list? Or some voted list of “best books ever”? None of my favourites are on that list. Although I loved “Wuthering Heights” so much when I read it, I think it was surpassed in my favourites by her sister Anne’s “”Tenant of Wildfell Hall”.

I also got obsessed with Jeanette Winterson and Edmund White when I was a gay teen looking for representation anywhere, and I’ve read everything they’ve written, and every from Armistead Maupin and Poppy Z Brite as well. Those were the novels I read to see gay characters being represented, which I was far more interested in than just reading the classics or literary greats. 

Actually, the novels I refuse to get rid of are still the Winterson, White, Poppy Z Brite novels, along with newer favourites like Gwendoline Riley and Joey Comeau, and people like Gaiman and Pratchett. 

Should you have read all of these books? Does it really matter what you read as long as you read something? I dunno how I feel about that notion sometimes, as I imagine someone only reading Mills & Boon, or 50 Shades of Awful Prose, or something. But I find it hard to imagine someone only listening to one kind of music, or only reading one kind of book, or liking one particular genre of film.

What is good about these kinds of lists is that it gives people places to start if they’re looking for more books to read and have no idea where to begin. Though perhaps don’t go from reading Twilight to reading Ulysses.

(reblogged from r0ucarnage)

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