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So Many Books, So Little Time: A Year of Passionate Reading (2003)

de Sara Nelson

MembresRessenyesPopularitatValoració mitjanaMencions
1,4537912,947 (3.44)125
The well-known publishing correspondent and self-described "readaholic" chronicles a year spent reading-and the surprises it brought. In early 2002, Sara Nelson-editor, reporter, reviewer, mother, daughter, wife, and compulsive reader-set out to chronicle a year's worth of reading, to explore how the world of books and words intermingled with children, marriage, friends, and the rest of the "real" world. She had a system all set up: fifty-two weeks, fifty-two books . . . and it all fell apart the first week. That's when she discovered that books chose her as much as she chose them, and the rewards and frustrations they brought were nothing she could plan for: "In reading, as in life, even if you know what you're doing, you really kind of don't." From Solzhenitsyn to Laura Zigman, Catherine M. to Captain Underpants, this is the captivating result. It is a personal memoir filled with wit, charm, insight, infectious enthusiasm-and observations on everything from Public Books (the ones we pretend we're reading), lending trauma and the idiosyncrasies of sex scenes ("The mingling of bodies and emotions and fluids is one thing. But reading about it: now that's personal") to revenge books, hype, the stresses of recommendation (What does it mean when someone you like hates the book you love?), the odd reasons we pick up a book in the first place, and how to put it down if we don't like it ("The literary equivalent of a bar mitzvah, the moment at which you look at yourself and announce: Today I am an adult."). Throughout, So Many Books, So Little Time is pure delight-a work at once funny, wise, and rueful: enough to make a passionate reader out of anybody.… (més)
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Es mostren 1-5 de 79 (següent | mostra-les totes)
The premise of So Many Books, So Little Time is simple. Nelson has set out to read a book a week. Fifty-two books in fifty-two weeks. To some people that is a herculean task. To others, it might be child's play. It all depends on the book...and the reader, for that matter. Only Nelson's plan falls apart in the very first week. Her first book is a bust. So is the next one. And the next one. So Many Books, So Little Time turns out to be a memoir about books read, books skimmed, and books skipped (a total of 266 titles if you are curious).
Disclaimer: I am about to have so many meltdowns about this book and for various reasons. Please excuse my childish temper tantrums.
Rant #1: even the dust jacket states that Nelson chronicles a year's worth of reading in So Many Books, So Little Time. Indeed, there is a section at the end of the book called "What I Actually Did Read" and it lists twenty-one books. Even what she planned to read is vague (she lists twenty-three books by name). What happened to the fifty-two? The Heartburn (March 22) and the Bird By Bird (April 6) chapters were how I thought the entire book would read. I was really looking forward to that. Here's the weird thing. In the appendix of books actually read, Heartburn and Bird By Bird are not mentioned. And if you look a little closer she only read nineteen books, reread another, and skimmed another. Again I ask, what happened to fifty-two?
Rant #2: I didn't understand her freaking out when someone didn't share her opinion about a book. What is the big deal if you disagree? That is what makes books and people interesting. Imagine how boring a book club would be if everyone had the same opinion about a book?
Rant #3: Nelson will reread a book if she loved it. With so many books and so little time I move on from a reread unless I don't remember the plot or it doesn't take that much time. Why spend so time on something you already know?
Rant #4: What was her deal with Mitch Albom? I honestly feel she was a little jealous of his relationship with a mentor. Tuesdays with Morrie was not just an "All I Really Needed to Know" kindergarten lesson. It was about human (re)connection with a person who was dying; squeezing out as much time as possible with someone. Also, what was her deal with making excuses about reading Mary Higgins Clarke? It was if she was embarrassed to read something non-academic. Everybody needs some fun now and again.
Rant #5: The chapter on Anthony Bourdain was less about Kitchen Confidential and more about Nelson's personal feelings towards the man. I found myself asking what was the point exactly? Maybe I am a little sensitive because the man committed suicide since the publication of So Many Books...
All is all, I felt So Many Books, So Little Time was an opportunity for Nelson to rattle off all the books she has either read, partially read, read and given up on, or only skimmed. In the end I found myself finishing just to see what books we had in common (202). ( )
  SeriousGrace | Nov 26, 2023 |
Just about any book about books or reading is a fabulous book, right? The only reason I didn't go with a 5-star rating is because I didn't get many titles to add to my list of books to find and read.
A passage I liked:
... what's in a book is only part of what matters, in the right circumstances and with the right history, just about any book can take you where you need to go, even if you could never have found that place on a map.
Also:
When things go right in my life, I read. When things go wrong, I read more. Frustrated with work, bored with my marriage, annoyed at my kid or my friends, I escape into books. ( )
  ReadMeAnother | Aug 9, 2022 |
I enjoyed parts of this book but enjoyment was hindered somewhat by the fact I didn't recognise a lot of the titles & the inherant American-ness of it was a bit overwhelming at times. Also, what the heck is wrong with a good paperback?!
  leah152 | Dec 4, 2021 |
accounts of reading to a plan
  ritaer | Jul 12, 2021 |
I borrowed this from UH Main Campus via a request. It was not particularly good.

See my note on it in my blog:

[http://gypsylibrarian.blogspot.com/2007/06/booknote-so-many-books-so-little-time.html] ( )
  bloodravenlib | Aug 17, 2020 |
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To Charles Nelson, 1917-1990, who didn't know what he was getting himself into when he taught me to read all those years ago and to Charley Yoshimura, who lives with the result, every day
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(Clica-hi per mostrar-ho. Compte: pot anticipar-te quin és el desenllaç de l'obra.)
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Wikipedia en anglès (1)

The well-known publishing correspondent and self-described "readaholic" chronicles a year spent reading-and the surprises it brought. In early 2002, Sara Nelson-editor, reporter, reviewer, mother, daughter, wife, and compulsive reader-set out to chronicle a year's worth of reading, to explore how the world of books and words intermingled with children, marriage, friends, and the rest of the "real" world. She had a system all set up: fifty-two weeks, fifty-two books . . . and it all fell apart the first week. That's when she discovered that books chose her as much as she chose them, and the rewards and frustrations they brought were nothing she could plan for: "In reading, as in life, even if you know what you're doing, you really kind of don't." From Solzhenitsyn to Laura Zigman, Catherine M. to Captain Underpants, this is the captivating result. It is a personal memoir filled with wit, charm, insight, infectious enthusiasm-and observations on everything from Public Books (the ones we pretend we're reading), lending trauma and the idiosyncrasies of sex scenes ("The mingling of bodies and emotions and fluids is one thing. But reading about it: now that's personal") to revenge books, hype, the stresses of recommendation (What does it mean when someone you like hates the book you love?), the odd reasons we pick up a book in the first place, and how to put it down if we don't like it ("The literary equivalent of a bar mitzvah, the moment at which you look at yourself and announce: Today I am an adult."). Throughout, So Many Books, So Little Time is pure delight-a work at once funny, wise, and rueful: enough to make a passionate reader out of anybody.

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