How many books have you read since 2007? I have read 881, though that number is probably a bit low. Over the years I am sure I’ve read a few books that I forgot to list, but thanks to my siblings being VERY competitive readers, I started keeping a spreadsheet of all the books I read, beginning in about February of 2007. There were a few books I read in 2007 that I wish I had added, because I can’t recall the names of the authors or the exact book titles to find them again. But, almost all the books I have read since then are on my spreadsheet. I almost never quit a book partway through, either, so if it is on the list I read all of it. Here are the books I read in those first months I was recording my reading:
Saving Nature’s Legacy: Protecting and Restoring Biodiversity, by Reed F. Noss and Allen Y. Cooperrider
Brown Fairy Book, by Andrew Lang
Gray Fairy Book, by Andrew Lang
Rose Fairy Book, by Andrew Lang
Red Fairy Book, by Andrew Lang
Yellow Fairy Book, by Andrew Lang
Green Fairy Book, by Andrew Lang
Dancing at the Dead Sea, by Alanna Mitchell
Crimson Fairy Book, by Andrew Lang
The Andrew Lang books are one of the absolute best fairy tale collections, ever. He compiled 12 of these books, published between 1889 and 1910, and includes a total of 437 tales drawing from many cultures and countries. Even if you like fairy tales and have read a lot, there are probably fairy tales in this collection that will be new to you. Wikipedia now has lists of all the stories in each book – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Andrew_Lang%27s_Fairy_Books – but of course reading the books id a lot more fun than just reading the titles. This series has been criticized for being edited for children, so that the stories are tamer than the originals, but this means these are good books to read aloud with your kids, or kids you’ve borrowed for this purpose, a story a night.
If you like books about travel and interesting natural places, the book about the Dead Sea was also very good. Mitchell provides a great, well-balanced perspective on this fascinating body of water and its natural and social contexts. I just wish I had written down the rest of the books I had checked out from the library in Richmond Beach, because the rest of these were library books, and they lived on a shelf with several others I really enjoyed, that I unfortunately had already returned when I started making my spreadsheet.
After these books I decided to finish a Bible I had been working on, one that was literally falling apart. I would read a book or two, and then put them in the paper recycling bin, because they really weren’t attached to their spine any longer by then. It may seem like a strange way to read a book, but the advantage is that you always know where you left off, because the next page is on the front of the remaining book fragment. I often rescue books from the trash or the dingy corners of thrift stores that are in such bad shape, so I can read and recycle them. The Bible I read in 2007 was already missing the cover and most of its table of contents and other intro pages, but it did still have its very long preface, It was a translation done by scholarly Jewish people, and since when I was a Christian I was in particular a Seventh Day Adventist, I appreciated the scholarly aspects a lot. But, nowhere on the remaining pages I had when I found this sad book was there a title that would suggest the name of the translation.
I’d already read the King James Version and the New English Translation, and a few others, including one older version on Project Gutenberg, so I found the comparisons interesting. The version I read in 2007 talked about the provenance of the various verses, pointing out where bits of older texts were spliced together, and where older oral histories were garbled over time to become the text that gets translated and re-translated as The Bible. If you like reading religious texts for their historical and archaeological/literary value, this version would be a great one to read, but again, I don’t know what it is called.