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Monday, January 2, 2012

2011 in Review

For the first time since I started this blog I reached my goal of reading 52 books in 52 weeks! This year I have been going to school 3/4 time and working full time. Between school and the CLEP tests I took I got a total of 30 credits towards my degree so I had the study load of a full time student with a four year target to graduation. Something had to go so it was the blogging. I still have a list of the books I've read and will blog about them when I have time. In the mean time I would love it if you would friend me on www.goodreads.com where I am username wildpokerman or Roland Martinez in Nashua.

So for the year in review here are my nominations:

Best Book:

The Debt to Pleasure was my favorite book of the year. It's a novel written by a journalist, John Lanchester. The vocabulary and images were by far the most thought provoking in any book I have read. I filled up a notebook page and a half with words I had to look up but rather than detracting from the book, it added to the experience. I have another book of his on my shelf, IOU which is about the financial crisis, and I can't wait to read it.

Runners up are:

Full Dark No Stars-King still has it.
Dig Your Well Before You're Thirsty-A nice book for those of us who are stupid about networking.
The Happiness Project-Loved it and I learned to adore Gretchen Rubin
How to Read Literature Like a Professor-Loved it, like taking a lit class in your living room.
Zombie-Joyce Carol Oates had me cringing and grabbing my head at her vivid descriptions of murder and torture. Graphic as all hell and made me reconsider my stance that I'm fine with the kids picking up and reading any book in the house. I couldn't help but keep going back for more, even though I had to put it down frequently because it got too visceral and intense.
Wuthering Heights-Read it now if you haven't. You can't have lit cred unless you have read this book at least twice!

Worst Book:

Even the Stars Look Lonesome is the last autobiographical work of essays by Maya Angelou. The book starts out with her and her husband moving to a smaller house because the huge house they live in is just too much for them. The smaller house doesn't save their marriage so she leaves her economist husband (only a real bitch could hate an economist) and moves to a medium sized house in DC. She also tosses in a nice essay about how Oprah Winfrey is a guiding light of womanhood that was so cloying that it made me want to vomit. Then she follows this up with an essay about how Clarence Thomas was a good choice for Supreme Court Justice because he lived the black experience. She justifies this by stating that any Republican nominee would have voted the same way but someone with the experience of growing up black would at least have some sympathy to the black experience in America. I'm sorry Maya, but he has no sympathy and he's a sexual predator. I wish she would have died before she published this book of throwaways which serves only as a word of warning to artists of what can happen to your soul once you get a bit of money and fame. You become a regular sellout celebrity, and the ability to make the music dies in your dim, money tainted soul.

Runners up:

Anthem-Yes Ayn Rand and Rand Paul, you are both sad, empty people.
33 Million People in the Room-I need to learn that free on Amazon is not a good deal.
Come Monday-Girl porn featuring a poor Irish college student and her dominant professor. Arrgh girl porn, how I hate thee.
The McSweeney's Joke Book of Book Jokes-Every joke should be like a dick joke, if it's flaccid in the end, you're not telling it right.

So here's to making an achievement out of an arbitrary desire to do something I love to do! I'm excited to see what books 2012 brings on.

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Hey I appreciate you leaving your thoughts behind! Be well my friend.