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Day 3: Everything is Illuminated

January 3, 2010

I finished Gatsby yesterday evening, and as I suffered through the ending, the plot–which I had long forgotten after reading it 5 years ago–started to come back to me. I still love the book, and I’m glad that I read it again. But the ending makes me uncomfortable. I think it’s the idea of dying alone, of ignorant betrayal and selfishness that made me want to stop reading before I had come to the final pages. I wasn’t able to actually feel for Tom or Daisy or Gatsby–none of them ever showed qualities that were remotely normal or human. But agonizing over Nick’s attempt to pay some sort of honor to Jay Gatzby is heartbreaking. That and I’m a sucker for a love story (you’re reading the blog of a hopeless romantic) and every relationship in this plot ends in death or doom. Note to self:  stop halfway through next time.

After finishing The Great Gatsby, I dug around my house to find a book I had not yet read. I bought several books online but they shouldn’t get here for another week or so and I am attempting to not spend any more money until they arrive and I have finished them (And a sidenote here: I love the library, but I feel that books are an investment that I am willing to make. I know I can easily read 99 books this year without a single cost to myself…well, except the inevitable late fee…but I hope when I graduate from college within the next year and a half and move into a tiny apartment of my own, I will have a substancial library to keep me company. It sounds silly but nothing makes me feel more at home than being surrounded by books).

Anyways, I found a book that I had bought from a used book store a year or so ago but never got the chance to read: Everything is Illuminated by Jonathan Safran Foer. I read another novel of his a few years ago, Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, which I had enjoyed so I figured this would be a good read (that and my friend, Nasia, had recommended it). So far, so good.

So far, I’m 3 days in and almost 2 books deep. I do not expect that I will be able to keep up this pace once I return to school and classes start. But I’m beginning to actually form a list of books as more people hear about this little project of mine. I keep getting recommendations, and I’m attempting to keep them all straight and read at least one book from everyone’s list of “Books That You Absolutely, Positvely Must Read.”

The Tally (expect this from every post where I actually make progress).
Days Left: 362
Books Read: 1!

Cheers, Christine

2 Comments leave one →
  1. January 3, 2010 9:08 pm

    I’m not quite sure as to what you’ve already read but I remember how much I loved “The Canterbury Tales” by Chaucer and either the “Illiad” or “The Odyssey” by Homer. I do totally agree with you about books though I do so feel like I’d rather invest in a new copy then check one out from the library! That and I am absolutely terrable about returning books so it’s better in the long run if I avoid the late fees and just buy the book!

    • Christine permalink*
      January 4, 2010 11:34 am

      “Illiad” and “Odyssey” are two of my favorite classics–I read them for a class in college that I took on a whim about Greek Civilization and they were two of the most interesting things I’ve read at school. And I totally agree with you…I probably end up paying more in late fees than I would for the book itself!

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