Tuesday, 1 January 2019

Complete List of Reads: Total 62 Books

Criticism is not the only way to write about literature and reading experiences. When I began my journey with 52 books reading challenge I decided, that I am not going to play a literary critic. I wanted to concentrate on the thoughts the books provoked and positive notions that I picked on the book while reading. Every single one of these books had something to give for a reader and I had a privilege to read great literature through 2018. There is a place for criticism too in the world and I believe writers and creatives can get that from other sources. Criticism and cynicism are a quick way to look smart and well read. To concentrate on praising is often connected with naivete and lack of knowledge. To praise is to show that you as a reader actually enjoyed what you read no matter how others took the book. In a way you become fragile, someone can take out the carpet by showing how the work you enjoyed is in fact unreal or cliche and what you thought is wonderful and touching becomes shameful. But who is to say what is authentic and worth experiencing? It might just be that what the author is writing is a new opening that only few can sense. Maybe it is not the experience of majority and that is why the work gets the badge of unreal.

It is known that there are gatekeepers in the cultural world, not every work gets published and the reason might not be in the quality but the resonance with the current pattern of speech and acting. Books can challenge and change our thinking if we don't grow a thick cover between us and the world. Through reading these books I have moved forward in my life and found new ways of thinking. Even the books I didn't cherish that much taught me something. It is worth pondering why a certain work doesn't speak to you. In this pile of 62 books (I went over the goal with 10 books) there were works that people seemed to enjoy a lot according to social media. But I myself struggled to read the same appraised works. Not because they were not any good, but because my own background and current situation. This is something to acknowledge personally. Then there were works that took a place in my heart and spoke directly on issues that have been going on in my own mind. The situations described were familiar and thoughts relatable or the author gave something to chew and process forward, a new way of thinking and seeing. It is old fashioned to think that there is a number of books that work for all, classics that everyone everywhere would enjoy and find important. Sure some works last time better, but we can't know which ones.

What happens next year has an influence on how we see the past works. A book that has laid forgotten might have a new relevance. Some classics shone brighter than others in 2018. Our lives are not the same and the books we need to read are not the same either. During a stressful period of time there is a need to read a book that gives an escape. Then one day we need a challenge and turn into that over complicated book that opens up in a a new clear way like never before. Book I love today might be a book that I can't understand after ten years. That is why I needed to focus on writing about what the books had to give to me in 2018. The conclusions tell about this year, discussions we have had and my personal life at the moment. Instead of lifting up books that everyone should read, personal reading experiences might lead us to the tracks of finding literature that has meaning to us in our life's. Like minded bookstagrammers have given me plenty of excellent recommendations. Books form families over periods of time, discussions we people can't have together because we are separated by time and distance.

I read this thought provoking article from the New York Review of Books by Tim Sparks. Is Literary Glory Worth Chasing? (27.10.2018). Sparks introduces Giacomo Leopardi's thoughts about what affects on the critique the work gets in it's time and in which terms it is possible to earn appreciation for your work. Check the article from here: https://www.nybooks.com/daily/2018/11/27/is-literary-glory-worth-chasing/

Below you can find the complete list of books I read in my free time this year. These are not in the same order I read these because I had to edit the list from various lists, books that I blogged about, books that I only introduced on Instagram and books I just read and wrote to my notebook. 2018 was a wonderful year what comes to reading and finding new favorite authors. It was also exciting to find paths from book to another and read both new releases and old classics I had never heard before. I am positive that 2019 will be equally wonderful, my must read lists guarantee that there will be no empty moments coming.

1. Lidia Yuknavitch: The Book of Joan
2. Carmen Maria Machado: Her Body and Other Parties
3. Franz Kafka: Kootut kertomukset (complete short stories)
4. Cheryl Strayed: Wild. From Lost to Found on The Pacific Crest Trail (Villi vaellus)
5. Truman Capote: In Cold Blood (Kylmäverisesti)
6. Françoise Sagan: Bonjour Tristesse (Tervetuloa ikävä)
7. Leo Tolstoy: Anna Karenina
8. Alice Walker: The Color Purple (Häivähdys purppuraa)
9. Susan Sontag: Stories
10. Albert Camus: L'étranger (Sivullinen)
11. Donna Tartt: The Secret History
12. Saara Turunen: Sivuhenkilö
13. Leena Parkkinen: Säädyllinen ainesosa
14. Sylvia Plath: The Bell Jar (Lasikellon alla)
15. Ray Bradbury: Fahrenheit 451
16. Julian Barnes: The Only Story
17. Anna Gavalda: Fendre l´armure (Lohikäärmetatutointi ja muita pintanaarmuja)
18. Leena Krohn: Kadotus
19. Peter Kimani: Dance of the Jakaranda
20. Sara Stridsberg: Drömfakulteten (Unelmien tiedekunta) and Valeria Solanas: SCUM 21. Manifesto (SCUM manifesti)
22. Anton Chekhov's Short Stories
23. Tove Jansson: Dockskåpet (Nukkekaappi)
24. Tove Jansson: Sommarboken (Kesäkirja)
25. Karen Blixen: Den afrikanske farm (Eurooppalaisena Afrikassa)
26.- 28. Anton Chekhov: Sakhalin Island (Sahalin)
29. F. Scott Fitzgerald: The Great Gatsby (Kultahattu)
30. Michael Ondaatje: The English Patient (Englantilainen potilas)
31. Anil's Ghost (Anilin haamu)
32. Sara Stridsberg: Beckomberga. Ode till min familj (Niin raskas on rakkaus)
33. Tuula Karjalainen: Tove Jansson. Tee työtä ja rakasta.
34. Violette Leduc: La Bâtarde (Äpärä)
35. Rupert Thomson: Never Anyone But You
36. Lauren Elkin: Flâneuse. Women Walk the City in Paris, New York, Tokyo, Venice and London.
37. Jean Rhys: After Leaving Mr Mackenzie (Herra Mckenzien jälkeen)
38. Nefertiti Malaty: Ei äitimateriaalia
39. Hannu Rajaniemi: Summerland (Kesämaa)
40. Eeva Turunen: Neiti U muistelee niin sanottua ihmissuhdehistoriaansa
41. Martha Gellhorn: The Face of War
42. Truman Capote: Breakfast at Tiffany's (Aamiainen Tiffanyllä)
43. Ossi Nyman: Röyhkeys
44. Anne Garréta: Sphinx (Sfinksi)
45. John Steinbeck: Of Mice and Men (Hiiriä ja ihmisiä)
46. Elif Shafak: Three Daughters of Eve (Eevan kolme tytärtä)
47. Jenny Offil: Dept. of Speculation (Syvien pohdintojen jaosto)
48. Danielle Lazarin: Back Talk. Stories.
49. Anilda Ibrahimo: Rosso come una sposa (Punainen morsian)
50. Henriika Tavi: Tellervo
51. Tara Westover: Educated (Opintiellä)
52. Roland Barthes: La chambre claire (Valoisa huone)
53. Susan Sontag. On Photography (Valokuvauksesta)
54. Silvia Hosseini: Pölyn ylistys
55. Sapfo: Iltatähti, häälaulu
56. Eeva Lennon: Eeva Lennon, Lontoo
57. Anna Kortelainen: Hyvä Sara! Sara Hildénin kolme elämää
58. Sisko Savonlahti: Ehkä tänä kesänä kaikki muuttuu
59. Pentti Holappa. Ystävän muotokuva
60. Mirkka Lappalainen: Pohjoisen noidat. Oikeus ja totuus 1600-luvun Ruotsissa ja Suomessa
61. Audre Lorde: Your Silence Will Not Protect You
62. Marja Tuominen and Mervi Löfgren (edit.): Lappi palaa sodasta. Mielen hiljainen jälleenrakennus


  1. Niin hyvin sanottu. Hienoa Sannu! Mielenkiintoisia kirjoja, toi Anna Gavaldan kirja on itseltä jääny lukematta ja se pitää kyllä laittaa lukulistalle, koska muista Gavaldan kirjoista oon pitäny paljon. Innolla odotan myös sun tänä vuoden lukukokemuksia ja kirjainspiraatioita 😊

    1. Kiitos Anu! Anna Gavaldan kirjat menevät kyllä aina ytimeen. Ilmaisu on mukavan tiivistettyä, mutta silti täynnä elämän sävyjä. Paksut kirjapinkat odottavat lukijaansa tänäkin vuonna ja koitan käydä läpi myös uutuuslistoja jahka muilta kiireiltä kerkiän.


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