Thursday, May 13, 2010
The truth is, I haven't had much to say. I've had a hell of a time trying to locate the first book on the list. The thought didn't occur to me that I wouldn't be able to find any of the books...they ARE Pulitzer Prize winners, right?
So since March I've been treading my way through the second book on the list, Booth Tarkington's The Magnificent Ambersons. And when I say "treading", I mean it. It's May and I'm still only halfway through. Everything that I've read about Tarkington raves about him (or her...I'm not sure, is Booth a male or female name?) and I haven't been able to figure that out yet.
The language that Tarkington uses is beautiful. It's not one of those oh-my-gosh-i-cant-wait-to-get-through-this-paragraph description. He's good. Just not as amazing as I expected. I keep waiting for that moment in the book where somebody thought, "Wow, this thing deserves some type of award! Pulitzer it is!," but so far, I'm confused.
I guess I'll just have to get to the end to figure it out. If the library will even let me renew more times than I have already...that reminds me. When is it due back?
Tuesday, March 2, 2010
I love to read. I have loved to read since I was a kid. When I was in elementary school, I used to get in trouble for reading chapter books during class.
I love to spend the first 30 minutes after buying a small electronic device reading its manual.
I read a particularly fascinating article in Highlights magazine not too long ago. And the magazine that AARP puts out once had a very insightful article on how to save money while traveling.
Sometimes, I like to pretend I'm the main character in a novel I'm reading and that I have their special powers, or their cool clothes or I live in their city or their time period. I love any kind of quick-read book by Meg Cabot or Helen Fielding but I also love the kind of resounding literature that Mark Twain and J.D. Salinger wrote. William Shakespears and Tennessee Williams' plays also top my list of favorite reads.
If you go to a movie with me and I see that the movie was based on a book, you better believe I'm going to the library after that movie and checking out the book.
I am usually the first person my friends will ask about current events because they think I probably read an article about something somewhere. They're usually right.
I recently checked out four books from the library without considering when I would have time to read them. In order to finish them all and turn them back in on time, I've left one at home, one in my book bag, one at work and I keep one in my car for lengthy stoplights. That way, I'll always have something to read. And that's how I like it.
That part about reading the book in the car? I really do that. :)
Monday, March 1, 2010
I shall post it when I am not feeling lazy and actually am within arm's length of my jump drive.
Thursday, February 25, 2010
2009 Olive Kitteridge by Elizabeth Strout (Random House)
1981 A Confederacy of Dunces by the late John Kennedy Toole (a posthumous publication)
(Louisiana State U. Press)
1947 All the King's Men by Robert Penn Warren (Harcourt)
1917 (No Award)
In writing his 1904 will, which made provision for the establishment of the Pulitzer Prizes as an incentive to excellence, [Joseph] Pulitzer specified solely four awards in journalism, four in letters and drama, one for education, and four traveling scholarships. In letters, prizes were to go to an American novel, an original American play performed in New York, a book on the history of the United States, an American biography, and a history of public service by the press.
But, sensitive to the dynamic progression of his society, Pulitzer made provision for broad changes in the system of awards. He established an overseer advisory board and willed it "power in its discretion to suspend or to change any subject or subjects, substituting, however, others in their places, if in the judgment of the board such suspension, changes, or substitutions shall be conducive to the public good or rendered advisable by public necessities, or by reason of change of time." He also empowered the board to withhold any award where entries fell below its standards of excellence. The assignment of power to the board was such that it could also overrule the recommendations for awards made by the juries subsequently set up in each of the categories.
Since the inception of the prizes in 1917, the board, later renamed the Pulitzer Prize Board, has increased the number of awards to 21 and introduced poetry, music, and photography as subjects, while adhering to the spirit of the founder's will and its intent.
You may be wondering why I decided to take on the daunting task of reading all of the Pulitzer Prize-winning novels.
It first started fall semester of '09. I took a feature writing class in which my teacher had us reading a lot of the prize-winning articles so I was spending a lot of time at pulitzer.org. While I love to read, it was kind of hard to find a lot of the articles past 2002 and I'm not incredibly interested in reading them anyways.
That's when I started getting curious about the prize-winning novels. I checked them out. They date back to 1917! I think I counted somewhere around 90 novels.
The thought to challenge myself and read them all didn't creep into my mind until later. Even then, I wasn't sure I wanted to do it. Then, a couple of weeks ago, I finally decided to do it!
I'm so nervous about this journey, and I think it might be a long one. But here goes! I think by the end of this, the winners for 2010 and 2011 might already be announced...