Give me books, fruit, french wine and fine weather and a little music out of doors. --John Keats

Friday, August 13, 2010

Still reading . . .

I feel like Titian's Sisyphus, but with more clothes on
It has been nearly three weeks since I started reading Anna Karenina. Of course, I took a break to read The Help earlier this month, and now I am reading We Were The Mulvaneys instead (more on that another time), but I am not accustomed to spending more than one week reading a book. I am finding it frustrating. Recently I jokingly mentioned to someone that I don't do well on projects which take more than a week to complete, but maybe there was more truth to that than I realized.

It has happened a time or two in the past, of course. I think it took me years to finish reading Under the Tuscan Sun. (If it wasn't literally years, it sure felt like it). I spent weeks on The Historian; I still can't figure out what the deal was with that book, because it had a great story and was well-written, and yet it felt like a slog.

However, I read both of those books before I started blogging. I think this blog may be the source of my frustration with spending so long on Anna Karenina. I have Blog Itch, and I need to scratch it, but it is taking me too long to read this book!

I am really enjoying the story, I am entirely convinced that it will be worth the time I spend, and I have absolutely no plans to abandon the book, but I have partially resorted to a solution I have never tried before. I have downloaded audio readings of the first three parts of Anna Karenina from LibriVox.

I feel like I am cheating! I fully and completely admit that I have done this so I can finish the book faster. For me, actual eyeball reading is faster than listening to an audio book, but I haven't yet figured out how to read while I am washing dishes or running or cooking supper. After spending two weeks reading 100 pages, I happily find that through the magic of LibriVox I have been boosted ahead to page 310 in just the past few days. But, ugh, nearly 500 pages to go, and LibriVox does not have complete readings past page 360. Maybe some kind souls will jump out there and volunteer time and voice so that I can listen to the rest of this book.


Jessica said...

I find this sometimes with long projects too. I do have Anna Karenina on my shelf and I do mean to get round to in within the next few months but its quite hard to get the motivation. Sometimes I find that reading an easier book alongside helps so I then read one chapter a day of the 'hard longer book' and then concentrate on the easier book the rest of the time. But either way I look forward to seeing what you think once Anna Karenina is all over.

Coffee and a Book Chick said...

I haven't read Anna Karenina, and I think it's because I'm just scared to pick it up...I love classics, though, so I really need to get over my fear! Sometimes I like a book that I can't just zip right through and tells a story, so maybe I'll be okay with this one? I'm scared, though!! :)

Rachel said...

I really enjoyed Anna Karenina and surprisingly read it quite quickly. I hope you finish it soon! :)

Kathy said...

Jess--I normally prefer to concentrate on one book at a time, but I think with AK I definitely need to follow your suggestion and squeeze in some fast reads here and there.

Natalie (and Jess too!)--don't let me scare you about this book. Maybe it will go by quickly for you like it did for Rachel! When you do get around to picking it up, you won't regret it.

Rachel--do you have a superpower? ;)