As 2016 draws to a close, it is clear to me that I am not going to finish the other reading challenge I set for myself this year. For the ninth task, I had decided I would read Gravity’s Rainbow. I borrowed the audio version from the library and was stunned to discover it was thirty discs long. I worked my way through several discs before it was due back at the library. I would have renewed it, but another audiobook that I had on hold arrived at the same time.
I decided to borrow a hardback copy from another library. All 776 pages. It took me a while to find my place in this massive tome. I started to read but my eyes would cross. I gave up. I returned the book when it was due with no intention of checking it back out. That was a good thing because the library thought that I DIDN’T return it. I’m not sure if they ever found it. I certainly had no reason to steal it. I could not quite wrap my brain around this genre-bending novel.
I never found an alternative book for that task and so this challenge will remain unfinished. You can see which books I did successfully tackle in the list below.
- A book with “Blue” or any shade of Blue (Turquoise, Aquamarine, Navy, etc) in the title: Half-Resurrection Blues by Daniel José Older
- A book with “Red” or any shade of Red (Scarlet, Crimson, Burgandy, etc) in the title: The Red Tent by Anita Diamant
- A book with “Yellow” or any shade of Yellow (Gold, Lemon, Maize, etc.)in the title: The Yellow Wallpaper and Other Stories by Charlotte Perkins Gilman
- A book with “Green” or any shade of Green (Emerald, Lime, Jade, etc) in the title: The Green Man by Kingsley Amis
- A book with “Brown” or any shade of Brown (Tan, Chocolate, Beige, etc) in the title: Encyclopedia Brown, Boy Detective by Donald J. Sobol
- A book with “Black” or any shade of Black (Jet, Ebony, Charcoal, etc) in the title: The Black Prince by Iris Murdoch and The Black Dahlia by James Ellroy
- A book with “White” or any shade of White (Ivory, Eggshell, Cream, etc) in the title: The Woman in White by Wilkie Collins
- A book with any other color in the title (Purple, Orange, Silver, Pink, Magneta, etc.): Orange Buffalo by Grayson Queen and The Color Purple by Alice Walker
- A book with a word that implies color (Rainbow, Polka-dot, Plaid, Paisley, Stripe, etc.): Gravity’s Rainbow by Thomas Pynchon – DID NOT FINISH
Were there any books that you just couldn’t finish this year?