Pam Webb

a writer's journey as a reader

Archive for the tag “Jeremy Irons”

Reading Round Up: October

The ability of freely reading after a long day of teaching and grading becomes an increasing struggle. Books are still a go to for defragmenting my brain, yet I find myself falling asleep way too soon as I relax while reading. It’s taking sooo much longer to get through my TBR stack. Sundays are becoming my reading days. And napping days. I do a bit of both.

Here are October’s highlights:

⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️
Realistic slice of how one neighborhood copes with diversity.

⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️
Overall, a thoughtful contemplation about what to do when the realization that life might be shorter than initially expected. While the foreign names and places were sometimes difficult to keep straight, the challenge of absorbing deep truths proved worthwhile.

NOTE: As much as I appreciate Jeremy Irons, I found the film adaptation so different from the novel I had to resort to my “the movie is the movie and the book is the book” philosophy. The book, of course, is so much better.

  • Reading Goal Update

Though my usual reading time is cut almost in half with my attention diverted to school again, I’ve managed to read past my yearly Goodreads goal of 101 books, and I am now at 121 titles for the year. Should I reach for 135 like I have previously? Ooh, that might be a challenge to consider…

oh, yes–please read me a story…

Over the past couple of years I’ve been fortunate to journey with some of the more elite and talented thespians of this age.  The likes of Jeremy Irons, Cherry Jones, Jessica Tandy, and Sissy Spacek have kept me company on my long travels and daily commute.  They have challenged me, enlightened me, and entertained me.  And I showed my appreciation by never interrupting them as they spoke.

“Read me a story.” These words are among the first requests we have as a child once we figure out language.  Somewhere between infancy and childhood the request to be read to drops to the wayside–maybe it’s seen as being rather babyish, since, after all we have learned to read books on our own. Yet, I never tire of having a book read to me.  I especially have learned that while I need to read, I’m not very good at juggling the reading of more than one book unless one of them is an audio book.  I am hooked on audio books.

Audiobook Collection

Audiobook Collection (Photo credit: C.O.D. Library)

I’ve been listening to audio books since they became available on cassettes all those years ago.  Sometimes the dratted tapes would fuss up and I’d lose part of the story. Aggravating. Then came CDs, (much better thank you–although occasional scratching causes blips and hiccups–so annoying).  Now there are websites, Ipods, and Playaways, where all that is needed are a set of headphones.

There is nothing like having a good story read out loud on a long, solitary car trip.  As I prepare for my trip I gleefully check out several audio books from my lovely neighborhood library and perch them on my passenger seat as my companions.  Most books play any from seven to fourteen hours. Great for those long hauls.  I’ve been known to stay in my car to listen to the last of the story even after arriving at my destination.

The downside to audio books is due to their very nature of interactive reading–once started as an audio book, it’s difficult to finish it by traditional eye-to-page.  I made that mistake with The Heart is a Lonely Hunter. Coming home I was about halfway through listening to the book and decided to finish reading it via my checked out library book. What better way to spend the remaining sunny summer afternoon?  However, as emotionally involved as I got with the story, due to the excellent voice of Cherry Jones, I couldn’t sufficiently feel the proper grief when * SPOILER ALERT* I read of Singer’s demise. It didn’t register at all.

Lately, I’ve taken to listening to audio books on my short commute to work.  It helps get more reading done, since I get tired of listening to music.  Except I have run into a bothersome problem. My last audio book still resonates with me and I am having a difficult time moving on to checking out my next selection.  How can I possibly find a better reading than what Jeremy Irons did in The Alchemist?  I may have to go back to listening to music for a while. I even tried to recapture the glorious reading by checking out both library copies which are wonderfully  illustrated.  Nope,  wasn’t the same thing as listening to Jeremy’s sonorous tones.  I may even be spoiled for the movie they keep saying will eventually be made.

What is your favorite audio book?  Is it just me, or is there really something about having someone read you a story?

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