Monday, October 29, 2007

Reading Meme

Caroline tagged me with this a while ago and it's taken me until now to get to it. I'm too busy procrastinating drafting working on a paper to be delivered in mid-November. But I have been working through a few novels lately, so I thought I'd give you a taste of the variety of my reading lately.

First, here are the rules:
"Open the book you’re currently reading to page 161, and post the fifth sentence on the page, then think of 5 bloggers to tag."

OK. I read Kazuo Ishiguro's Never Let Me Go over the weekend, but I'm including it here to prove I do, on occasion, read books for adults. Though I must say, the premise of this novel is scarily like Nancy Farmer's The House of the Scorpion, published two years earlier as a children's novel. And, for what it's worth, I bought the Ishiguro novel used at Plato's Closet, a YA hangout if there ever was one.

Here's the fifth sentence on page 161:
"Well, she never got to make that decision because of what happened next."

Also in progress, Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm. This one's because I have a student working on an interesting honors thesis on female orphans in children's lit. Rebecca isn't technically an orphan--her mother's living--but she fits the template my student is working with so I'm re-reading the novel.

Page 161 only has four sentences, though, so here's the fourth:
"I wish you could take things easier, child; I am fearful for you sometimes."

(Side note on Rebecca: I'm reading an old paperback I picked up used, but it is one of several books available in the Charming Classics series, packaged along with a necklace. My student and I are amused at how many of the books she's writing about are available in this series: A Little Princess, The Secret Garden (the pendant is a key), Heidi, and Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm, at least--there are many more in the series, though.)

I'm also slowly working my way through Little, Big again. I first read this in college, when I had a chance to interview the author by phone (one of my first bylines). It's a lovely book, and I'm not quite sure why I'm going so slowly through it this time, but doing so makes much clearer to me all the intertextual references (to Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, especially) that I missed the first time through.

Page 161, sentence 5: "I mean," Doctor Drinkwater said, reappearing beside him, "that every Christmas seems to follow immediately after the last one; all the months that came between don't figure in."

Nick and I are also working our way through Daniel Pinkwater's Alan Mendelsohn, the Boy from Mars (in his Five Novels). We took a little break for the World Series, but we'll be getting back to it soon.

Page 161, sentence 5: "In Alan's case, they would be so grateful he wasn't there, they weren't likely to look into the matter."

Finally, also on my bedside (along with an ever-growing stack of New Yorker magazines) is Jane Yolen's Take Joy: A Writer's Guide to Loving the Craft. I haven't gotten very far with it yet, but I am enjoying dipping into it occasionally. Here's the fifth sentence on page 161:

"I responded: "Every time an editor wants to talk about plots and depth, they bring in the old onion." Now doesn't that make you want to read more?

As for tagging five more--Life in Scribbletown already did it, even before I did; if you're reading it here, feel free!

1 comment:

Claudia said...

Oh, we LOVE Daniel Pinkwater! Esp Artsy Smartsy Club.