April 22, 2011


I have discovered something wonderful.


I learned a few weeks ago that I can simultaneously listen to a story whilst doing my job (shelving books) at the library. Earning money and reading at the same time! Can life get better!?! *dazed expression* The trouble with this voracious feat of multitasking is that it tends to turn my mind to mush after a while. >_> Four solid hours of carrying books and alphabetizing books and sorting books and shelving books and picking up books and thinking about books while listening to a story the entire while can mess with one's mind a bit. But I will triumph! I am a fiercely stubborn multitasker, and I will not desist until my mind is slipping like melted butter from my ears! (I'm sure you're grateful for that lovely visual.)

I have already consumed five books on the job thus far, and they are as follows:

Walk Two Moons
Sharon Creech

I liked this one. It was unusual and a sort of modern-classic. Surprising, funny, sad, and entertaining. It's the story of a girl (with an epic name, "Salamonca Tree Hittle", or "Sal" for short) whose mother has left her family. It's a story of the girl's wanting her back, and the story of her friend Phoebe Winterbottom, and the lunatic, and Sal's grandparents, and... it's hard to explain. It was a good story, well-written, clean, quoteable, full of good morals and interesting thoughts. Recommended.

A Wrinkle In Time
Madeline L'Engle

This is a fantasy story about three children who find three strange, friendly old ladies living in the woods, and that encounter leads to a world-jumping adventure of strangeness. The children battle to save a brainwashed alternate world of rythmn and fact controlled by an evil, mysterious source of blackness. Didn't like this book so very much. Perhaps because it was meant for younger readers... anyhow, I found it to be rather slow and dull. Plus, the protagonist bugged me, and it is difficult to enjoy a tale when you are constantly wanting to give the protagonist a hearty smack.

The Hunchback of Notre Dame
Victor Hugo

Was a whopping 17.5 hours long. *eyes cross* But I made it through. And I really liked it. The book was nothing like the movie (which I've not seen but know enough about); it was instead one of those basically-everyone-dies-at-the-end kind of books. Quite depressing, but I liked it... then again, I have morbid tastes. >_> I'm not quite sure what the moral of the story was meant to be; perhaps "Regardless of who you are and however innocent you are, you're still in danger of getting hanged." Or maybe, "Desert your friends, and you might not get hanged." Or perhaps the ever-encouraging, "If you're guilty, they'll hang you. If you're innocent, they'll probably hang you anyway." Or even the extremely uplifting, "Be a complete jerk and you might not get hanged." It's a very wholesome and inspiring book, as you can see.

Angie Sage

I did not enjoy this book, the first installment of the Septimus Heap series. It seemed to be an immense and shameless rip-off of the Harry Potter series (the correlations between the characters, plot, and setting were ridiculously and numerous). Oh, and Harry Potter was not the only book to suffer idea plagiarism; in Magyk there was also a magic ring (conveniently found by someone lost in dark tunnel) as well as a White Witch. :| I jest not.

The book is rather slow-paced; not very exciting or memorable. There were a few redemptive qualities - funny scenes or the occasional worthy line, but all in all I found it rather cliche and dull. Perhaps because, like A Wrinkle in Time, it's meant for younger readers.

The Cricket in Times Square
George Selden

I read this one just today. Unlike Magyk, which was a whopping 13 hours long, this little tale was only about 3. I finished it easily in one work shift. It was cute, more like a short story or a fable than an actual novel, telling of a little cricket from Connecticut who accidently ends up in New York and becomes the pet of a newsboy. Not particularly exciting or fast paced tale, but it's endearing and had a nice little moral.

- - -

And because this post just wouldn't be complete without a list, here is how I rank these five books, from most favorite to least:

1. Walk Two Moons
2. The Hunchback of Notre Dame
3. The Cricket of Times Square
4. A Wrinkle in Time
5. Magyk

That's all,


Miss Eyebright said...

Alright, I have to tell you that you have my dream job at the moment. I have applied at my local library several times, but still haven't got it, so I am planning on volunteering there A LOT, in the hopes that when another opening comes up, I might be considered more. :) Unfortunately, they just went through budget cuts, so I doubt that will be happening soon...

Anyway, listening to books while shelving is a GREAT idea! And I understand 100% about the brain mush thing. But, a great perk is that you can pick out the new books and read them first. ;)

Thanks for sharing such a great book list!

Faye said...

Yes, very lovely visual. My BFF works at a library.
I'm glad you found a fun way to pass the time at work.
I'm cheering for you to triumph over multi-tasking!

Jake said...

Fantastic! :)

I rather liked both Magyk and A Wrinkle in Time. ^_^ But to each his (or her!) own.

Jake said...

However, it comes to my mind several audiobooks that I have heard of: there is a Lord of the Rings dramatized version, though I have not yet gotten a-hold of it (and a Narnia drama as well! which is epic), The Keepers of Elenath audiobook, as well as numerous others I cannot recall. The availability of such audio books may depend on the manner you obtain them, though.

Jake said...

Also (I hope I'm not a bother O_o), I just remembered that the Redwall audiobooks are AMAZING. :) They are not dramatized, but there are different actors for different characters, and the narrative is read by Brian Jacques himself.

whisper said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
whisper said...

Miss Eyebright: Best of luck with obtaining this job! I hope indeed that your library will soon find a place for you on its staff. :) Thanks for dropping by!

Faye - Thankyouthankyou! *bows* And hurrah for your librarian-friend!

Jake - Indeed, to each his own! o_O I suppose this is one of the few areas in which we must differ.

I ought to try to get my hands on a Keepers of Elenath audiobook; I've been meaning to get around to reading it.

(you are in no way whatsoever being a bother. >_> ) These Redwall audiobooks you describe sound wonderful! The only ones I've heard were done by a single narrator, who did a rather strange job with some of the voices. o_O I'll seek out this different one performed by the late great author himself!


Jake said...

*nod* They are epic! I used to spend many a night listening to them.

whisper said...

*nods* Indeed! Sounds like good memories. :)