Friday, December 28, 2012

2012: Part I


There's nothing like turning a page.

These are the books I read this year, or at least the ones I remember reading:

  1. Marie Antoinette: The Journey, Antonia Fraser : I majored in French and when it comes to French history, nothing interests me as much as the Palace of Versailles during the period leading up to the Revolution. In other words, Versailles from the moment Marie Antoinette first set foot in it until it fell to the revolutionaries. I actually learned very little about this period in college because the only history class I took ended right at the end of the Sun King's rule (Louis XIV, whose reign ended in 1715) and Marie Antoinette moved into the palace in 1770. So I took it upon myself to pick up this biography (on which Sofia Coppola's 2006 film Marie Antoinette is based) and learn about the Austrian Queen of France myself. She is now without a doubt one of my favorite historical icons. 
  2. Love in the Time of Cholera, Gabriel García Márquez: Well, this is a classic so you know it's going to be good. It's intense, but a very good read. Also, I don't want to grow old waiting for love. That's it.
  3. El Bosque de los Muertos (The Forest of the Dead): This was a book I picked up at my uncle's house and eventually gave back, so I can't remember the author. It was as heartbreaking as any account of the Holocaust is. It was short, too, so it was an easy read. It had some beautiful quotes, like the following, which really struck me and has turned out to be impossible to forget: "Stones are, sometimes, less insensitive than men." 
  4. Little Women, Louisa May Alcott: Ok, I tried to read this one, but the characters are so goody-two-shoes that they bored me. I know it's a good book, but I couldn't get through it. It wasn't the time. 
  5. American Psycho, Bret Easton Ellis: Wow. Just, wow. It gave me nightmares. I literally had to put it down a while before I went to sleep so I could sleep peacefully. It's one of those books that stays with you one way or another. I went to New York City shortly after reading it and I kept picturing Patrick Bateman everywhere. I had seen the movie before I read it and it had made me shiver, but not as much as the book did. I loved it in a very strange way. 
  6. The Snows of Kilimanjaro, Ernest Hemingway: I had never before read Hemingway so I decided to start with this collection of short stories. I liked his storytelling. It's easy to read and his characters are effectively and quickly introduced and developed. You become hooked right away, but are easily able to let them go when the story ends. I particularly enjoyed the stories about Nick. 
  7. Pride and Prejudice and Zombies: Dawn of the Dreadfuls, Steve Hockensmith: This book is the prequel to Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, which I think I read last year. I've never read Pride and Prejudice but I've been told it's basically the same except without the zombies. I loved Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, and Dawn of the Dreadful was an entertaining way to pass some time. A well-written light read.
  8. The Great Gatsby, F. Scott Fitzgerald: I re-read this one this year, thinking that the movie came out in December. I was disappointed to find out that it was moved to May, but then realized it comes out on my birthday weekend, so I figured "at least I get to read it once more before seeing the film!" I had liked it when I read it in high school but now that I'm older and more mature (though some might argue against that statement), I adored it. I think it might be my new favorite book, but I want to read it at least once more before I confirm that.
  9. The Hobbit, J.R.R. Tolkien: I read The Lord of the Rings a decade ago. I am a pretty huge fan of the books and the movies. So as the release of the first installment of The Hobbit's big screen rendition grew closer, I bought the book and finally read it. Yeah, for the first time. I was surprised at how easy it is to read (I didn't take into account that it is basically a children's book), specially since The Lord of the Rings is not easy to get through (at least not the first one). It's a wonderful fantasy book, there is no way not to love it unless you're a boring person who can't read. You get so attached to Middle Earth that you want to have a Lord of the Rings marathon as soon as you close the book. I can't wait to re-read the trilogy and see the next two Hobbit films. Yeah, I know, I'm a geek. 
Right now I'm working on Les Misérables which, believe it or not, I've never read. It's daunting and I haven't gotten past the first book, but it's not too hard to read, and it's actually not boring either. Hopefully I'll finish it by this time next year. I'll keep you posted!

'Til tomorrow, this has been a Fatiluzer rant!


  1. Yeii!!! Finally!
    Love the quote from "El bosque de los muertos" and I remembered our conversation about The Great Gatsby, today I'm starting Les Misérables obviously in Spanish and I decided that my next one will be Mr. Fitzgerald's book, my question would be: do you think is better to read an autor in their native language? I mean, would it be better the experience if I read it in english?

    I keep loving your posts, it really makes me feel closer to you! ♥

    1. Thank you for reading them! You're like the only one who does haha. As to your question: I do think it's best to read an author in the language he wrote his novel/essay/story in because you are reading the actual words that he or she chose and sometimes, in translations, the meaning of certain things can change. The Great Gatsby is actually very easy to read, so I would highly recommend you read it in English if you can. :)

      Again, thank you for reading my posts! Love you!