Q3 Reporting

Given the lateness of this quarterly report, I only have 2 months in which to complete my A Century of Books challenge for the year. The last time I did ACOB it took me about 18 months, but this time around I am determined to finish the century by the end of the the year.  Although I have been making good progress, I realized this month that I needed to reapply myself to reading off the ACOB list and cut down on non-ACOB reading.

19 to go with two months left. Should not be a problem. I am already thinking of next year’s reading resolutions.

19teens

Completed last quarter.

1920s

With 1927 done, I am now finished with the 1920s.

1927 – Leadon Hill by Richmal Crompton

1930s

With these three, I have now also finished the 1930s. The Road to Wigan Pier was fascinating (and depressing) and the Old Man’s Birthday was a lot of fun. Untouchable was also fascinating and depressing, but a little tedious.

1935 – Untouchable by Mulk Raj Annand
1936 – The Old Man’s Birthday by Richmal Crompton
1937 – The Road to Wigan Pier by George Orwell

1940s

Nevil Shute must have been a fast writer because Landfall is a World War II story published in 1940. The Wescott was also a World War II but, as far as I could tell/remember Two Serious Ladies was not. The Bowles also did not seem like a book that could have been written in the 1940s. Salacious enough to have been written in the 1960s.

1940 – Landfall by Nevil Shute
1943 – Two Serious Ladies by Jane Bowles
1945 – Apartment in Athens by Glenway Wescott

1950s

The Waugh seemed slightly antiquated. Ernesto was a bit of historical fiction so it didn’t necessarily feel like the 1950s (then again it may have been written earlier and only published in 1953). The Sarton feels of its time–academics and the Red Scare.

1952 – Men at Arms by Evelyn Waugh
1953 – Ernesto by Umberto Saba
1955 – Faithful are the Wounds by May Sarton

1960s

I really kind of enjoyed the creepiness of The Room Upstairs. The Wallace Stegner was amazingly good and definitely felt like California in the 1960s (not something I know first hand mind you). And I’ve now finished this decade as well.

1964 – Dancing Lessons for the Advanced in Age by Bohumil Hrabal
1966 – The Room Upstairs by Monica Dickens
1967 – All the Live Little Things by Wallace Stegner
1968 – A Very Private Life by Michael Frayn

1970s

The Bainbridge felt very much like the 1970s. Williams’s take on ancient Rome did not.

1972 – Augustus by John Williams
1978 – Injury Time by Beryl Bainbridge

1980s

Highly wrought, hyper-emotional, intellectual soap opera. Very Murdoch. (I loved it despite all.)

1983 – The Philosopher’s Pupil by Iris Murdoch

1990s

Finally made some progress on the 1990s. None of these felt like they were published in the same decade. None of them could be more 1990s than the Crichton. An interesting romp through an air accident investigation that had characters so much out of central casting it was painful.

1991 – City of the Mind by Penelope Lively
1992 – Black Dogs by Ian McEwan

1995 – The Blue Flower by Penelope Fitzgerald
1996 – Airframe by Michael Crichton

2000s

I really, really enjoyed The Man in the Wooden Hat, but I also loved The Road Home which definitely felt more of its time.

2005 – Poisonville by Massimo Carlotto
2007 – The Road Home by Rose Tremain
2008 – Anathem by Neal Stephenson
2009 – The Man in the Wooden Hat by Jane Gardam

20teens

Four completely different and satisfying reads. The one that really mesmerized me was Open City. Dense and fascinating with tons of cultural/intellectual references that don’t seem forced or pretentious.

2011 – Open City by Teju Cole
2013 – Harvest by Jim Crace
2016 – Hot Milk by Deborah Levy
2018 – West by Carys Davies

The Whole Century So Far

1919 –  Free Air by Sinclair Lewis

1920 – Happy House by Jane D. Abbott
1921 – Vera by Elizabeth von Arnim
1922 – A Son at the Front by Edith Wharton
1923 – Peter West by D.E. Stevenson

1924 – The Unlit Lamp by Radclyffe Hall
1925 – Rex by E.F. Benson
1926 – Marazan by Nevil Shute
1927 – Leadon Hill by Richmal Crompton
1928 – Quicksand by Nella Larsen

1929 – The Bride’s House by Dawn Powell

1930 – Journey’s End by R.C. Sherriff and Vernon Bartlett
1931 – Mystery in the Channel by Freeman Wills Crofts
1932 – Invitation to the Waltz by Rosamond Lehmann
1933 – High Rising by Angela Thirkell
1934 – The 12:30 from Croydon by Freeman Wills Crofts
1935 – Untouchable by Mulk Raj Annand
1936 – The Old Man’s Birthday by Richmal Crompton
1937 – The Road to Wigan Pier by George Orwell
1938 – Brighton Rock by Graham Greene

1939 – The Confidential Agent by Graham Greene

1940 – Landfall by Nevil Shute
1943 – Two Serious Ladies by Jane Bowles
1944 – The Friendly Young Ladies by Mary Renault
1945 – Apartment in Athens by Glenway Wescott
1948 – Catalina by W. Somerset Maugham
1949 – Prairie Avenue by Arthur Meeker

1950 – Brat Farrar by Josephine Tey
1952 – Men at Arms by Evelyn Waugh
1953 – Ernesto by Umberto Saba
1954 – Slide Rule by Nevil Shute
1955 – Faithful are the Wounds by May Sarton
1956 – The Hunters by James Salter
1959 – Passage of Arms by Eric Ambler

1960 – Butcher’s Crossing by John Williams
1961 – The Chateau by William Maxwell

1962 – Morte D’urban by J.F. Powers
1963 – A Day in Late September by Merle Miller
1964 – Dancing Lessons for the Advanced in Age by Bohumil Hrabal
1965 – My Dog Tulip by J.R. Ackerley
1966 – The Room Upstairs by Monica Dickens
1967 – All the Live Little Things by Wallace Stegner
1968 – A Very Private Life by Michael Frayn
1969 – Fat City by Leonard Gardner

1971 – Not to Disturb by Muriel Spark
1972 – Augustus by John Williams
1973 – Other Men’s Daughters by Robert Stern
1974 – Doctor Frigo by Eric Ambler
1975 – The Odd Angry Shot by William Nagle

1976 – Agent in Place by Helen MacInnes
1978 – Injury Time by Beryl Bainbridge

1980 – Recovering by May Sarton
1982 – A Pale View of the Hills by Kazuo Ishiguro
1983 – The Philosopher’s Pupil by Iris Murdoch
1985 – The Tenth Man by Graham Greene
1986 – To the Land of Cattails by Aharon Appelfeld

1987 – In the Country of Last Things by Paul Auster
1988 – Beirut, Beirut by Sonallah Ibrahim
1989 – Damascus Nights by Rafik Schami

1990 – The Boss Dog by M.F.K. Fisher
1991 – City of the Mind by Penelope Lively
1992 – Black Dogs by Ian McEwan

1993 – Saving Agnes by Rachel Cusk
1995 – The Blue Flower by Penelope Fitzgerald
1996 – Airframe by Michael Crichton

2000 – The Goodbye Kiss by Massimo Carlotto
2002 – My Lover’s Lover by Maggie O’Farrell
2003 – Oracle Night by Paul Auster
2005 – Poisonville by Massimo Carlotto

2006 – In the Country of Men by Hisham Matar
2007 – The Road Home by Rose Tremain
2008 – Anathem by Neal Stephenson
2009 – The Man in the Wooden Hat by Jane Gardam

2011 – Open City by Teju Cole
2012 – The Flame Alphabet by Ben Marcus
2013 – Harvest by Jim Crace
2014 – The Golden Age by Joan London
2015 – Skyfaring by Mark Vanhoenacker
2016 – Hot Milk by Deborah Levy
2017 – When the English Fall by David Williams
2018 – West by Carys Davies

3 thoughts on “Q3 Reporting

  1. Simon T November 6, 2018 / 11:10 am

    Well done, and I wish you luck for the remainder! I believe you can do it! I’m (sorry) going to be sauntering into the finish, with only eight books left to read.

    I always forget Two Serious Ladies was so early. Definitely feels like it belongs with Muriel Spark et al in the second half of the 20th century.

    Like

  2. Geoff W November 13, 2018 / 12:39 pm

    I 100% thought Two Serious Ladies was published in the 60s or 70s. One of my old bosses gave it to me and I did not realize it was that old. That’s insane.

    Like

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