Some Thoughts, and My 2011 Reading List

It’s already 2012 in my current time zone and, so far, nothing seems so different about 2012. Just like on birthdays, the actual movement of the clock from 11:59PM to 00:01AM wasn’t a noteworthy experience full of internal fireworks going BANG and making everything in my head rearrange itself somehow. Thank goodness – can you imagine how unpleasant that would have been?

I’ve never made New Year’s resolutions. I judge myself too harshly and obsess over things too easily – if I made resolutions, I’d feel horribly guilty if I broke them, and keeping them would turn into an unpleasant and burdensome chore that I’d learn to despise. So I make small resolutions, daily goals that I can write down in my planner and joyfully tick off at the end of the day.

I also don’t seem to go for introspection. I’ve realized lately that I have a lot of trouble with sitting and thinking. I know some people who consciously take time to think over their issues, to reach decisions, to make sense of what they’re doing. I don’t do this. It seems to happen on its own, in between reading and showering and going about my daily life. I often wonder what I’m missing and whether my insights are somehow less worthy because I didn’t put in the deliberate time to reach them. I think that’s why I don’t manage to write long pieces about my life very often. I get bored with only being able to experience what I experience and think what I think; I suppose that’s part of why I read so much.

My only real resolution for 2012 is to manage to read one hundred books or more. And now I present the list of books I read during 2011:

Reading List, 2011




  1. A Room With a View by E. M. Forster
  2. To the Lighthouse by Virgina Woolf
  3. The Autograph Man by Zadie Smith
  4. How the Elephant Got Its Trunk by Rudyard Kipling
  5. Mai: The Psychic Girl Perfect Collection (Volume 1) story by Kazuya Kudo, art by Ryoichi Ikegami [graphic novel]
  6. Mai: The Psychic Girl Perfect Collection (Volume 2) story by Kazuya Kudo, art by Ryoichi Ikegami [graphic novel]
  7. The Mill on the Floss by George Elliot
  8. The Cold War: A New History by John Lewis Gaddis
  9. Mai: The Psychic Girl Perfect Collection (Volume 3) story by Kazuya Kudo, art by Ryoichi Ikegami [graphic novel]
  10. The Loneliness of the Mind Reader by Dalit Orbach
  11. Henry IV Part I by William Shakespeare



  1. Maurice by E. M. Forster
  2. The Little Drummer Girl by John le Carré
  3. A Study in Scarlet by Arthur Conan Doyle
  4. The Sign of Four by Arthur Conan Doyle
  5. The Spy Who Came in From the Cold by John le Carré



  1. The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss [reread]
  2. The Wise Man’s Fear by Patrick Rothfuss
  3. The Portable Dorothy Parker by Dorothy Parker
  4. The Mystery of Grace by Charles de Lint
  5. Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen
  6. The Late Mrs. Dorothy Parker by Leslie Frewin



  1. The Professor of Desire by Philip Roth
  2. The Quest for le Carre ed. By Alan Bold
  3. The Faerie Queene, book VI by Edmund Spenser
  4. IT by Stephen King
  5. Utopia by Thomas More
  6. A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens
  7. The Tempest by William Shakespeare
  8. Muse and Reverie by Charles de Lint
  9. Overqualified by Joey Comeau



  1. Bad Love by Jonathan Kellerman
  2. Tortall and Other Lands: A Collection of Tales by Tamora Pierce
  3. Twisted by Jonathan Kellerman
  4. The House of Mirth by Edith Wharton
  5. Seventh Son by Orson Scott Card



  1. Brideshead Revisited by Evelyn Waugh
  2. Along for the Ride by Sarah Dessen
  3. The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams
  4. The Restaurant at the End of the Universe by Douglas Adams
  5. Life, the Universe and Everything by Douglas Adams
  6. So Long, and Thanks for All the Fish by Douglas Adams
  7. Young Zaphod Plays it Safe by Douglas Adams
  8. The Hug by David Grossman
  9. Mostly Harmless by Douglas Adams
  10. Neuland by Eshkol Nevo
  11. The Amazing Maurice and His Educated Rodents by Terry Pratchett



  1. The Adventures of Tom Sawyer by Mark Twain
  2. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J. K. Rowling [Reread]
  3. The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain
  4. The Locusts Have No King by Dawn Powel
  5. Pipelines by Etgar Keret
  6. Naamah’s Blessing by Jacqueline Carey



  1. Starting Out in the Evening by Brian Morton
  2. Watchmen by Alan Moore
  3. Embassytown by Charles Mieville
  4. The Conspiracy Club by Jonathan Kellerman
  5. I Shall Wear Midnight by Terry Pratchett
  6. Breakable You by Brian Morton



  1. Missing Kissinger by Etgar Keret
  2. Scott Pilgrim’s Precious Little Life by Bryan Lee O’Malley
  3. The Adventure of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain [Reread]
  4. Scott Pilgrim v. the World by Bryan Lee O’Malley
  5. Scott Pilgrim and the Infinite Sadness by Bryan Lee O’Malley
  6. Scott Pilgrim Gets it Together by Bryan Lee O’Malley
  7. Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen [Reread]



  1. Masfield Park by Jane Austen [Reread]
  2. Spuds by Karen Hesse
  1. Galilee by Clive Barker
  2. Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoevsky
  3. David Copperfield by Charles Dickens [Reread]
  4. The Collected Tales of A. E. Coppard by A. E. Coppard
  5. Wolf Moon by Charles de Lint



  1. Moby Dick by Herman Melville
  2. God’s Eyes a-Twinkle: An Anthology by T.F. Powys
  3. Middlemarch by George Eliot




  1. The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes by Arthur Conan Doyle
  2. Spindle’s End by Robin McKinley
  3. A Visit from the Goon Squad by Jennifer Egan
  4. Fairest by Gail Carson Levine
  5. The Dylanist by Brian Morton
  6. Conrad’s Fate by Diana Wynne Jones
  7. The Pinhoe Egg by Diana Wynne Jones





6 thoughts on “Some Thoughts, and My 2011 Reading List

  1. Erin M says:


    How did you read Moby Dick AND Middlemarch and do NaNoWriMo AND schoolwork and . . ?


    Also, it looks like we read several of the same books this year! (Er, last year for you now.)

    Happy new year, Ilana! I hope 2012 is wonderful for you.

  2. Leslie says:

    Your reading list puts me to shame!!! You probably read more in one month than I do in the year! I’m quite inspired by that, actually. You must have incredible time management… 🙂 Happy New Year!

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