October 7th, 2007

lindisfarne gospels

Adventures in Ministry

So, today was the first day of my new confirmation class. Three Middle School boys. Ought to be an interesting class.

Today, we went through how the Bible is organized and what the contents consist of -- the better to start them on a program of regular Bible reading.

Anyway, as I was explaining what-all the Writings were about, a mentioned that the Song of Songs was an epithalamium. Blank stares. An erotic love poem written for a royal wedding. Instant attention!

Except that I then had trouble getting them to pay attention to the rest of the lesson, since they all wanted to read Song of Songs.

Oh, well, anything that gets them to crack the covers of the book . . .

Bah, bah, meme sheep

These are the top 106 books most often marked as "unread" by LibraryThing's users. Bold what you have read, italicize those you started but couldn't finish, and strike through what you couldn't stand. Add an asterisk to those you've read more than once. Underline those on your to-read list.

Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell
Anna Karenina
Crime and Punishment
Catch-22 [saw the movie]
One Hundred Years of Solitude
Wuthering Heights
The Silmarillion*
Life of Pi : a novel
The Name of the Rose*
Don Quixote [read an adaptation]
Moby-Dick [but read an adaptation]
Ulysses [have heard it argued over for years; not interested]
The Odyssey
Pride and Prejudice
Jane Eyre
A Tale of Two Cities [read an adaptation]
The Brothers Karamazov
Guns, Germs, and Steel: the fates of human societies
War and Peace
Vanity Fair
The Time Traveler's Wife
The Iliad
The Blind Assassin
The Kite Runner
Mrs. Dalloway
Great Expectations
American Gods
Atlas Shrugged
Reading Lolita in Tehran: a memoir in books
Memoirs of a Geisha
Wicked: the life and times of the wicked witch of the West
The Canterbury Tales
The Historian: a novel
A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man
Love in the Time of Cholera
Brave New World
The Fountainhead
Foucault's Pendulum*
The Count of Monte Cristo [read an adaptation]
A Clockwork Orange
Anansi Boys
The Once and Future King*
The Grapes of Wrath
The Poisonwood Bible: a novel
Angels & Demons
The Inferno
The Satanic Verses
Sense and Sensibility
The Picture of Dorian Gray [saw the movie]
Mansfield Park
One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest [saw the movie]
To the Lighthouse
Tess of the D'Urbervilles
Oliver Twist [saw the musical]
Gulliver's Travels [read an adaptation]
Les Misérables
The Corrections
The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time
The Prince*
The Sound and the Fury
Angela's Ashes : A Memoir
The God of Small Things
A People's History of the United States: 1492-present
A Confederacy of Dunces
A Short History of Nearly Everything
The Unbearable Lightness of Being
Beloved [never in a million years]
The Scarlet Letter
Eats, Shoots & Leaves
The Mists of Avalon
Oryx and Crake: a novel
Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed
Cloud Atlas
The Confusion
Northanger Abbey
The Catcher in the Rye
On the Road
The Hunchback of Notre Dame
Freakonomics: a Rogue Economist Explores the Hidden Side of Everything
Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance: an Inquiry into Values*
The Aeneid [read summaries]
Watership Down*
Gravity's Rainbow
The Hobbit*
White Teeth
Treasure Island [read an adaptation]
David Copperfield
The Three Musketeers

What I notice from this list are two things: first of all, the shaky state of my early education in literature, undergone back when all standards were faltering in the face of the Boomer tidal wave; and secondly, the large number of classics I know primarily through abridgements and Classics Illustrated Comic Books.