Welcome! I'm Melissa Gross, a dynamic and interactive teacher and speaker called to lead and encourage Christian women in their walk with the Lord through classes, workshops and retreats incorporating Bible study, devotionals, illustrated Bible journaling, paper crafting and mixed media projects that merge faith and art bringing God’s Word to life so you can find renewed excitement to dive into the Word, use your creative gifts, and apply the Truth as you draw closer to the Lord and serve Him in your everyday life. This site is where I share my everyday adventures, Bible Journaling pages, scrapbook layouts, handmade cards, and other crafty projects, as well as information on my upcoming workshops and events. I also post photos, ramble about books I'm reading, stuff I'm organizing, and other FUN bits & pieces of my wonderful life.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Reading Goals, Books Read List & The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo

One of my greatest passions is life is reading. I have always enjoyed reading. As far back as elementary school, I can remember reading in bed before falling asleep. I enjoy reading a variety of books and am most often reading two to four books at a time.

In 2010, I read a total of 90 books. I keep a list of the books I read, just something for my own record. The list includes all the books that I complete in a year, excluding children's picture story books that I read to the nieces and nephews when they are visiting (those could significantly increase the total!). You can see my list for 2010 and watch the 2011 list grow on this page of my blog (there's a link at the top of the page underneath the blog banner). I must note also that Robbie is an avid reader and completed 95 books in 2010, excluding the textbooks he read as he finished all except two courses for his MBA program (he'll finish up this spring). And we enjoyed three audio books together on our long road trip in the fall.

I also have a list of the current books I'm reading in my sidebar. Please know that the books I'm currently reading are not always ones I would recommend, obviously I can't come to that determination until after I've read the book. Most of the books I read are ones I choose myself, however I also read the books voted on by the book club I attend at our local library once a month as well as books that my niece or my sister or a friend might be reading or recommended. I am hoping to be more diligent this year about including book reviews of the books I complete. (On my Books Read page, I will include a link to my book review if I include one on the blog.)

My goal for 2011 is to read 100 books! For January, I plan to complete the Little House on the Prairie series by Laura Ingalls Wilder (I love these books!), to complete Blogging for Bliss that Cheri was kind enough to share in a Round Robin format (I'll be sending it on to the next reader in a couple of weeks), and at least begin George W. Bush's Decision Points.

The first book I completed for this year was the book club book for Januarys' meeting earlier this week - The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson. This is not a book I would have chosen for myself and am not sure that I would recommend it to many readers. It is a Swedish book and the original Swedish title was Men Who Hate Women because the book centers around men who assault and molest women. There are some pretty vulgar scenes and inappropriate language is scattered throughout the book. I personally didn't think the story centered all that much on the girl with the dragon tattoo, but I learned that this was intended to be a series of 10 books about her, thus the American publishers changed the title of the first book. (As a side note, the author died before the first book was published, so to-date there are only three books.) The storyline involving the solving of a 30+-years-old murder is intriguing, but is unfortunately tied into the theme of assault and molestation of women. Thus, this book is only for very mature readers. I have no interest in reading the additional books in the series.

How about you? Do you enjoy reading? I would love your book recommendations!

7 comments:

alexa said...

100 books is quite a challenge! I love reading too, but have found in recent years that I find it hard to read fiction. Not sure why ... Perhaps working in close proximity to a lot of people means that the events and characters in fiction seem less multi-dimensional than those in real life. I enjoy books on journalling, art-journalling, crafts and simplicity! Not a novel in sight ...

Frances said...

Thanks for your opinion on the The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. It has so much hype I considered reading it. I won't now. I value your opinion since we like the same books (generally speaking!) Keep blogging, I love to read it.

Love to you and Robbie,

Frances

Cheri said...

I read all three of "The Girl" series last summer. I have to agree that the subject matter was not really to my liking, but the story kept me quite engaged. However, not a series I would recommend to just anyone and a bit too much graphic detail for my taste.

Sue, a.k.a. midwestgirl said...

I love to read, too! I don't keep a list, but put my initials and the date on the inside cover of a book when I've finished reading it. I prefer to read history and biography, but have a few favorite fictions authors. I'd love to know what you think about the Blogging for Bliss book - sounds intriguing!

Stephanie Joanna said...

Thanks for your review Melissa. I have "Girl With The Dragon Tatoo" on my reading list for this year, but only because of all the hype and the fact that all my friends have read it. I didn't even know what the plot was ... now that I've read your review, I'm in no real rush to read it.

I finished An Object of Beauty by Steve Martin over the holidays. It's about the politics that go on behind-the-scenes in the art world and it follows the career/love life of one young aspiring art collector. It was very well written and I really enjoyed it (I'm a huge art fan) but there were some graphic love scenes so definitely only for older audiences!

Rachel B said...

Wow thats a lot of reading! Good luck with your goal :)

joel & ginny said...

I just found your blog through Stacy J's post today. I just finished a book called the Forbidden Garden and really enjoyed it. It reminded me of another book I read called the Thirteenth Tale. I liked them because they were not totally predictable like so many books, and the character was well done.