For a month and a half I toiled away at Level 1 of The Grand Idiocy, traipsing through various galaxies, times, and parallel universes with Arthur Dent, occasionally heading off the Avonlea, Fairyland, and hanging out with alien teenagers on our own planet. I got lost on a road to Middlemarch, but pulled back halfway through. The thing is…it took some time. Level 2 took a week!
The reason for the differences? Points!
The goal is to get to 100 points and to have killed a series. A total of six Hitchhiker’s books were read to complete the series. (I had read the first book before, but decided to re-read it to start off the series). You get 5 points for each book you’ve read plus 10 x however many books are in a series that is killed. (Thus: 85 points for Hitchhiker’s; 5 points for the remaining books; a total of 105, because somewhere along the way, I forgot how to add). For level 2, I read the 9th book in The Black Jewels collection to kill that mofo. 95 points off the bat. Only 1 book additional to read in order to move to level 3.
The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy Books 1 – 5 by Douglas Adams
In a word…excellent. Wickedly quippy. Effortlessly flippant. Laugh-out-loud funny. Surprisingly biting. Offhandedly irreverent. One hell of a ride. Read these books!
“The ships hung in the sky in much the same way that bricks don’t.” – Douglas Adams The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy
The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy Book 6 by Eoin Colfer
In a word…gawd-awful. In all the ways that Adams’ stories are brilliant, Colfer’s story is forced, unfunny, and taxing. Too much time spent on people we don’t care about, and won’t care about. The asides, which always delightful, were distracting. The characters not entirely recognizable, most specifically, Arthur Dent. It felt like someone trying to be someone else, which it was. In the end, it felt like a commercial venture, and not a creative one.
I Am Number Four by Pittacus Lore
This story of an alien boy is something I picked up to read the last month of December, before jumping into the serial killer challenge in January. However, an exhausting work schedule prevented me from reading much of it, so it became the first book I read for the serial killer challenge. It’s a straight-forward, three-star read. A good enough book to pass the time, but not a series I have to read RIGHT NOW! I’m interested enough in seeing all those numbers come together.
The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making by Catherynne M. Valente
Similar in tone to Douglas Adam’s, actually. It’s unromantic in its approach to children, which I found surprisingly refreshing. It’s fun, and it’s great to see a girl featured in an adventure story. Also, I found the ending surprising and satisfying. A well-told story, and I’m looking forward to the remainder of the series.
Anne of Green Gables by LM Montgomery
I’m not sure if there is a girl of my generation who didn’t absolutely fall for the Canadian Miniseries staring Megan Follows as Anne Shirley (BTW that “e” is most important!). A friend gave me this book when I was younger, I think I was 10 or so? I tried to read it, but my modern-self wasn’t ready for literature, yet. So, picking it up again, I found the world of Avonlea on Prince Edward Island charming as though enveloped by a handmade quilt. Coming of age stories are often regulated to boys, and that’s fine, because they’re quite good (see Boyhood for example). Yet, as a girl, who watched these miniseries and relates to the book from that time frame, I really loved Anne’s story. Once I complete the book series, I’m buying the whole damn thing on DVD!
This book is the definition of, “meh”. I wrote a more thoughtful review of it here on Goodreads.
Dune Messiah by Frank Herbert
When I read Dune many years ago it felt like a perfect book to me. So perfect I made a conscious decision not to read the rest of the series, because I didn’t want it to change how I felt about the first book. Having read Dune Messiah now, I’m excited to read the rest of the series. There is something hypnotizing about Herbert’s writing. I feel as though I’m on spice when I read it. For those who need a lot of action in their Sci Fi, this isn’t the book for you. It’s all psychological, philosophical, metaphysical and intrigue. I friggin’ loved it!
Now…on to level three, but I think I’m going to hop down that bunny trail leading back to Middlemarch first.