Saturday, January 01, 2011

2010 in books (and more)

( above: me wearing my spectacular traditional Austrian hat in Innsbruck this summer)

A few favourite books and book moments of 2010:

I can't tell you how many books I read. I read every morning on the subway and average about 5 books a week. During holidays, that can inflate or deflate. I probably average about 100-125 books a year in all genres. Though I don't blog about every one ( because who has time? ), I try to read one non-fiction ( biography, memoir, history, literary criticism ) a month.

Lifelong dreams inspired by books that came true: A Trip to Vienna, inspired by my childhood ( and adult love) of Vienna Prelude. I traveled from coast-to-coast for work and my favourite re-visits were Victoria, BC, Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island and, of course, St. John's, Newfoundland.

I also had the privilege of attending the TD Canadian Children's Lit Awards at the CARLU (where Arthur Slade won for The Hunchback Assignments). Arthur Slade also wrote the single best author blog entry I read this year and we crashed his signing at Chapters

Once upon a time, I was a judge for the Stephen Leacock Award for Humour ( here in beloved Canada), and I knew if I put my mind to it, I could read and judge things again. So, when the call for INSPYs judges was sent out, I jumped at it! I was so fortunate to read for the Historical Fiction Category of the INSPYs ---and a fabulous book won!

-A Stranger in Mayfair by Charles Finch
-Silent in the Grave by Deanna Raybourn
-What Angels Fear by C.S. Harris
-Where Serpents Sleep by C.S. Harris
-A Royal Pain by Rhys Bowen
-The Keeper of Secrets by Judith Cutler

SERIES I GOT HOOKED ON: Victoria Thompson's Gaslight Mysteries, Elizabeth Peters' Amelia Peabody series, C.S. Harris's Sebastian St. Cyr series, Alexander McCall Smith's Isabel Dalhousie series.

-She Walks in Beauty by Siri Mitchell
-Her Mother's Hope by Francine Rivers
-The Bridegrooms by Alison Pittman
-While We're Far Apart by Lynn Austin
-Hear No Evil by Matthew Paul Turner
-Courting Morrow Little by Laura Frantz

General Market:
-The Help by Kathryn Stockett
-Garden Spells by Sarah Addison Allen
-Emily of Deep Valley by Maud Hart Lovelace
-Venetia by Georgette Heyer
-Black Sheep by Georgette Heyer
-Scout, Atticus and Boo by Mary McDonough Murphy
-The Last Dickens by Matthew Pearl
-The Book of Negroes by Lawrence Hill
-The Piano Teacher by Janice K. Lee
-Friends, Lovers, Chocolate by Alexander McCall Smith
-Come, Thou Tortoise by Jessica Grant

-Smith by Leon Garfield
-The Dream Thief by Catherine Webb
-The Dark Deeps by Arthur Slade
-Bright Young Things by Anna Godbersen
-Sloppy Firsts by Megan McCafferty

Favourite Book of 2010: The Dream Thief by Catherine Webb (unsurprisingly)

This was not a fantastic year for film; but there were a few stand-outs.

My favourite film of the year, is the King's Speech
followed closely by How to Train Your Dragon
I also enjoyed the return to vintage Disney with Tangled
As a Canadian, I enjoyed the Trotsky

Television was a bust this year; but I still watch House ( though it jumped the shark, in my opinion) and Republic of Doyle ( new season starts next week)

I watched Small Island this year and the 39 Steps, on the BBC front, as was the new series of Foyle's War. In media, my favourite offering of 2010 was the BBC Sherlock ( I adore it so much )


Unknown said...

I'm going to do my best to re-read Vienna Prelude this month. :) And I LOVED Small Island, need to rewatch that one. But BBC Sherlock was the icing on the cake for British productions for the year. :)

Kailana said...

I want to watch BBC things... I wish we had that channel! I must see what I have to do to get that channel and look into it. I must look into your list in more detail and see what I want to read off it. :)

Rachel said...

most of the bbc I watch comes first from Masterpiece Theatre ( which is shown on PBS here in Canada). I get BBC Canada and America and find neither that interesting.

Otherwise, I invest in BBC miniseries: especially adaptations of some of my favourite books. I have a well-rounded collection because I have been collecting for years.

I usually watch for pre-order sales on amazon, or, wait 'til some show up used and order from an amazon marketplace seller.

I have rarely been disappointed with anything BBC, ITV, Acorn or Granada has produced.

The BBC sherlock was the best I saw this year.

I just finished watching the 2002 Forsyte Saga: very long and poignant and with some dashing looking actors.

Kailana said...

Don't give me any idea. I have a hard enough time narrowing down my wish list as it is. :)