|Myshkin and The Faerie Queen.|
The new year has got off to a truly wonderful start: it's been quiet, peaceful, fairly productive, and generally lovely. And I'm finally reading To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee - about half way through and it is absolutely marvellous. This time last year I was reading Pickwick Papers and hating every minute of it. Not a good start, but this year has started very well. Really love this book.
So, yesterday I was thinking about the year ahead, but I do always like to have a look at the month ahead, too.
Firstly, I want to start The Faerie Queen. This is for The Narrative Poem Challenge, for which I've signed up for four. This, published in the 1590s, is quite possibly one of the most intimidating books I know (more so now I've glanced over the synopsis on Wikipedia and looked at the list of major characters), so I need some kind of action plan! As I have four narrative poems to read, and as I wanted to re-start The Canterbury Tales in spring, I would like to read The Faerie Queen over the next three months. There are six books, plus the 'Mutability' cantos, and of the six books there are twelve cantos within each. That is a grand total of seventy two cantos. The first day of spring, early this year, is the 20th March, exactly seventy seven days from today. So, that makes things fairly simple - a canto a day! That is not unreasonable at all, and that, therefore, is my plan.
This month I would like also to start Eugénie Grandet by Honoré de Balzac. I'm actually embarrassed that I haven't read a single thing by Balzac, and I wanted to read this for the Books on France challenge (along with five others). I'm eager to start because, as I've said before, I think it's unforgivable that I've read no Balzac!
I'm also really looking forward to starting Katherine's Turn of the Century Salon, which I'll be writing more about in a few days. I want to start with, as I've said before, Parades End by Ford Maddox Ford.
Also, I'm hoping in the next few days for a delivery of a few more Zola books, and as soon as they come, I will be starting the fourth of the 'Rougon Macquart' cycle - The Conquest of the Plassans. I cannot wait for these books to arrive! Should be here by Monday, I think. Earlier though, surely...
And, on the theme of challenges, I also want to read two books from my 100 Greatest or Ought to Have Read pile, though I've not decided which yet. Life of Pi ought to be one of them, I think, because everyone's talking about it right now. Then, a Penguin Great - which, I don't know. But one of them, anyway! Lastly, Barsetshire Towers by Anthony Trollope for my Major Works Challenge.
Quite a list, but I'm feeling particularly ambitious as Saturday is The Classic Club readathon! Again, I'll write more in a few days, and I don't want to plan my reading right now for that, so I'll pick the books nearer the time. At the moment, I don't want to go for the full twenty four hours as I'm trying to sort my sleep patterns out, but I will aim for at least twelve, if not eighteen. I'm really looking forward to it, and part of the fun is the anticipation and the planning, hence I want to leave it for a few days before I pick my books. For now, I'll enjoy contemplating what I may read!
And, for now, I'm going to go make some lunch and read To Kill a Mockingbird. Can't tell you how much I'm enjoying it! I hope everyone's first book of 2013 is just as good!