7 Deadly Sins (of Reading) Meme

Who can resist a sinful reading meme?

GREED – What is your most inexpensive book?
-At the moment I believe this would be “Thirteenth Night” by Alan Gordon, bought from a library sale for either a quarter or fifty cents. Shakespeare, and Jesters running the world, and murderous mystery, oh my!
thirteenth_night

It seems strange that it’s the cheapest instead of most expensive work, which I am not sure about in my collection, but what springs to mind is “The Illustrated Encyclopaedia of Arthurian Legends” edited by Roman Coghlan. It’s gorgeous and out-of-print and I felt guilty, although I’m sure it wasn’t that much bought second-hand….but it made me feel a lot greedier than buying things at library sales!
arthurian_legends


WRATH – What author do you have a love/hate relationship with?

-Definitely Alison Weir. I find her such a good source-finder, and her writing does have a wonderfully engaging quality so she’s fun to read, but then she goes and twists all the evidence around so her books always find people guilty or innocent depending on the current trend, and sometimes she even SAYS in there that this was a common thing with no meaning, but then she proceeds to find meaning in it anyway, and I’m sure it influences a lot of people, including my mother, and it is Frustrating. *glares*

GLUTTONY – What book have you devoured over and over with no shame?
-I find this question rather bemusing as it has never occurred to me to have shame over rereading books…I get it over rewatching TV sometimes? I suppose the book I’ve probably read the most over the years is “The Ordinary Princess” by M.M. Kaye-it is my springtime book and one of the most delightful novellas ever, where the king’s advisers have committee meetings and the princess’s animal friends aren’t anthropomorphized at all. It’s also probably the one I’ve read to other people the most, so there’s that. And if that makes me a glutton, then so be it-NO SHAME! YOU SHOULD READ IT! In the springtime, at any rate…
ordinary princess

SLOTH – What book have you neglected reading due to laziness?
-This would be Otto von Bismarck’s autobiography in volumes which I started and found very amusing, but am too lazy to get back into. His iron fist allowed him to write too much without tiring his hand, apparently. Also Proust.


PRIDE – What book do you talk most about to sound like an intellectual reader?

-I really don’t think I do this outside of research papers. o.O I remember in high school I did it with having read “Ivanhoe” for fun and enjoyed it.

LUST – What attributes do you find attractive in male or female characters?
-Dark, curly/unruly hair of the longish variety and an accent, preferably Irish. Also, intense stares. Yeah. In males, specifically.


ENVY – What book would you most like to receive as a gift?

-WHY MUST I PICK? That’s just ridiculously hard. Which I suppose makes me very envious since I’d like people to just hand me a lot of books as gifts. I shall say that the rare, out-of-print Barbara Helen Berger books like “Animalia” and “When the Sun Rose” would be particularly special.
Animalia

So, how about all the guilty readers out there? What are your seven deadly sins?

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Top 10 Books I was forced to read:

This is a meme from The Broke and the Bookish: http://brokeandbookish.blogspot.com/

I no particular order, these are books I was assigned to read in school and that I loved.

 

 

1. Lion of Ireland by Morgan Llewelyn (undergrad)

lionofireland

-This tale of Brian Boru is both accurate enough that I could read it for an Irish history course, and so moving and glorious that I often reread parts.

2. Idylls of the King by Sir Alfred Tennyson (high school)

-I love Arthurian lore and am a fan of Tennyson’s verse.

3. Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen (high school)

-This not only captured my attention for witty and romantic reasons, but was often read aloud in excerpts during class.  (Mr. Collins’ proposal was coerced out of my future fiance when he fell asleep and dropped out of his desk in class.  Although I had no interest in him at the time, I do treasure that memory now.)

4. Sir Gawain and the Green Knight (undergrad)

GreenKnight

-Again-I adore Arthurian lore, and this legend in particular has a special place in my imagination as mixing decapitation and romance so colorfully.

5. Candide by Voltaire (undergrad)

-We don’t know what you’re doing with your monks, indeed!

6. Canterbury Tales by Chaucer (high school and undergrad)

canterbury

-Ah, elegance, raunchiness, and insults wrapped up with a sarcastically pious bow.  Who can resist that present?

7. Caucasia by Danzy Senna (graduate school)

-This novel really hits on so many racial and coming-of-age notes, it’s remarkable.  Plus, it’s secretly a version of “The Juniper Tree.”

8. The Importance of Being Earnest by Oscar Wilde (high school)

earnest

-*begins to eat muffins*

9. King Lear by Shakespeare (high school)

-This is my favorite Shakespeare tragedy.  Have you READ the jester’s insults?  They are his absolute best, which is saying a lot.  Plus, fake madness.  I love a good fake madness, and in here it beats Hamlet’s.

10. Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead by Tom Stoppard (high school)

rosandguil

-Now, if we came from back there, and it is morning, than the sun would be over there.  And if the sun is really over there, then…it’s the afternoon.

 

Any thoughts, additions, or objections?

Top Ten Favorite Secondary Characters

Yoinked from: http://hardcoversandheroines.com/2013/08/26/top-ten-favorite-secondary-characters/

 

1. Will from “His Dark Materials” by Philip Pullman  (I say anyone not in all books of a series can be considered secondary, if you’re wondering.)

2. Inigo Montoya from “The Princess Bride” by William Goldman (This one’s a little iffy, as it’s really an ensemble cast, but…dammit, I love him and I am taking this chance to declare it!)

3. Rob Anybody from the Tiffany Aching series by Terry Pratchett.

4. Maddie from “Fever” by Lauren DeStefano (She is by far my favorite character overall.  I desperately want her to wind up in charge of everything.  This is my head-cannon.)

5. Thorin from “The Hobbit” by J.R.R. Tolkein (The primary reason why I detest the old cartoon version is their horrid characterization of Thorin.)

6. The Jester from “King Lear” by Shakespeare (He has, by far, the best and most brilliant insults of all the bard’s works.  And THAT, my friends, is saying something!)

7. The Persian from “Phantom of the Opera” by Gaston Leroux (WHY does he not show up in more movie versions??  He is wonderful!)

8. Puddleglum from “Silver Chair” by C.S. Lewis (You TELL that witch, you beautiful pessimist!)

9. Calcifer from “Howl’s Moving Castle” by Diana Wynne Jones (I want him to run my house!)

10. Gollum in everything by J.R.R. Tolkein (I know I already did something from “Hobbit”, but this counts as separate since it covers “Lord of the Rings,” too.  The sneaky creature stole my love from “Riddles in the Dark”.)

 

Who are yours?

Lords of the Rings AND Other Things

In a recent birthday discussion about activities with the Lord of the Rings cast, in literary figures and then in actors, several things became clear.

1. If a magic school the equivalent of Hogwarts began in Middle Earth, its founders would be:

-Elrond for Ravenclaw

-Boromir for Gryffindor

-Samwise for Hufflepuff

-Saruman for Slytherin

2. When visiting a haunted house with a LOTR character, you should take Aragorn.  He’d totally have your back.

3. When on a whale-watching boat, the person to hang out with is Sean Bean.  He has the ability to engage in and enjoy shipboard merriment while simultaneously being aware of the environment and on alert for sightings, even if the other passengers include pranksters.

4. If one had to babysit with someone that someone should be Elrond or Hugo Weaving-can you see the expression on his face when they overhear things he hadn’t wished them to or started running the wrong way?

5. If one of the cast had to be your wedding planner, it should be Andy Serkis.  He’s got directing experience and the ability to make incredibly stressful, going-wrong things laughable.  If it had to be a character, your wedding planner is Faramir. 

6. If one of the cast were to give the first speech at your wedding, it should be Boromir.  He gives short, sweet speeches and appreciates the real life of the party.  Moreover, he’s good at directing everyone else to partake more in the merriment.

7. If one of the cast were stalking you, it should be Billy Boyd.  If one must have a stalker they should be a soulful Scottish singer.

8. The funniest charades partner would be Dominic Monaghan.

 

Other things have candidates.  For instance

-When going to a haunted house  with the actors, would it be more fun to go with Elijah Wood (reassuringly goofy, but into it) or Liv Tyler (loving the fear, but reassuringly on the brink of laughter)?

-Would the best character stalker be Pippin (hilarious and bearing food) or Legolas (most soothing stalker ever and pretty)?

-Would you rather play charades with Haldir (swishy, painstaking, and interpretive dancey) or Legolas (earnest, stiff, and hilariously helpless at guessing)?

-Who would you most like to maintain an allegedly fancy garden with?  Ian McKellan (“Good work, now let’s knock off and have some iced beverages in our hats”) or Liv Tyler (“All paths lead to beautiful”)?  In characters, would you partner with Elrond (who guarantees both serene learning and a flourishing garden) or Samwise Gamgee (who guarantees growing things and agreement to your plans)?

-Who’d make the best college roommate?  Frodo (quiet, reader, good for dancing at parties and rooting-for-you advice on crushes) or Faramir (quiet, reader, good for hiking and giving perspective on parental issues)?  Or acting-wise, Ian McKellan  or Liv Tyler?

-Who would you like to host a dinner party with?  Gimli (most enthusiastic foodie, good for rousing the carousing) or Bilbo (best thinker of food choices and used to putting up with the worst of manners)?  Ian McKellan or Elijah Wood?

-Would your favorite Middle Earth designer (if all of them became adept for an epic designing show) be Faramir (Symbols, shininess, whites, and blues) or Eomer (Soft cloth, warmth, golds, and burgundies)?

-Who would you most like to bake cupcakes with?  Theoden (coziness, inept comedy, and victory announcements) or Samwise (earnest, peaceful, and up for most of the work)? Or Elijah Wood (goofy, messy, and everything-licking good) or Liv Tyler (calm, sweet partier)?

-Who would you like to ride a roller coaster by?  Galadriel (twinkle-in-her-eye) or Faramir (the light on the horizon is EVERYWHERE)? 

-Who would you most like to read your tarot cards?  Galadriel “(I see things that are, things that were, and some things that have not yet come to pass”) or Bilbo (“This is the most fascinating thing I learned from the elves, let me ponder, hmm”)?  Or Hugo Weaving or Sala?

-Whose self-help book would you most like to read?  Faramir’s “Resisting Rings to find Happiness” or Theodon’s “Getting out of the Ring in your Head”?

 

Feel free to weigh in with votes, other options, or more questions! 

(For example, ones with too many candidates to put here were With whom would you visit the zoo?  Who’d be the best partner in a non-dangerous but tricksy maze?  And so on!)