Tuesday, September 28, 2010

The Novel 100 list

I have had a request for the complete list of the books that I am reading. I have decided to type it up for all of you, but please note that this list is not mine it can be found in "The Novel 100: a ranking of the greatest novels of all time" By Daniel S. Burt. This book is helpful for reading through the books, as it gives you the background behind why Burt chose them, and also a bit about the books themselves.

1) Don Quixote- Miguel Cervantes
2) War and Peace- Leo Tolstoy
3) Ulysses- James Joyce
4) In search of Lost Time- Marcel Proust
5) The Brothers Karamazov- Feyodor Dostoyovsky
6) Moby Dick- Herman Melville
7) Madame Bovary-Gustave Flaubert
8) Middlemarch- George Eliot
9) The Magic Mountain- Thomas Mann
10) The Tale of Genji- Murasaki Shikibu
11) Emma-Jane Austen
12) Bleak House-Charles Dickens
13) Anna Karenina-Leo Tolstoy
14) Adventures of Huckleberry Finn-Mark Twain
15) Tom Jones-Henry Fielding
16) Great Expectations-Charles Dickens
17) Absalom, absalom-William Faulkner
18) The Ambassadors-Henry James
19) One Hundred Years of Solitude-Gabriel Marcia Marquez
20) The Great Gatsby- F. Scott Fitzgerald
21) To the Lighthouse- Virgina Woolf
22) Crime and Punishment- Fyodor Dostoyevsky
23) The Sound and the Fury- William Faulkner
24) Vanity Fair-William Makepeace Thackeray
25) Invisible Man- Ralph Ellison
26) Finnegans Wake-James Joyce
27) The man without Qualities-Robert Musil
28) Gravity's Rainbow- Thomas Pynchon
29) The Portrait of a Lady- Henry James
30) A woman in Love- D. H. Lawrence
31) The REd and the Black- Stendhal
32) Tristram Shandy- Laurence Sterne
33) Dead Souls-Nikolai Gogol
34) TEss of D'Ubervilles- Thomas Hardy
35) Buddenbrooks- Thomas Mann
36) Le Pere Goriot- Honore de Balzac
37) A portrait of an Artist as a Young Man- James Joyce
38) Wuthering Heights- Emily Bronte
39) The Tin Drum-Gunter Grass
40) Molloy, Malone, Dies the Unnameable- Samuel Beckett
41) Pride and Prejudice- Jane Austen
42) The Scarlet Letter- Nathaniel Hawthorne
43) Fathers and Sons- Ivan Turgenev
44) Nostromo- Joseph Conrad
45) Beloved- Toni Morrison
46) An American Tragedy- Theodore Dreiser
47) Lolita- Vladimir Nabokov
48) The Golden Notebook- Doris Lessing
49) Clarissa- Samuel Richardson
50) Dream of the Red Chamber- Cao Xueqin
51) The Trial- Franz Kafka
52) Jane Eyre- Charlotte Bronte
53) The Red Badge of Courage- Stephen Crane
54) The Grapes of Wrath- John Steinbeck
55) Petersburg- Andrey Bely
56) Things Fall Apart- Chinua Achebe
57) the Princess of Cleves-Madame de Lafayette
58) The Stranger- Albert Camus
59) My Antonia- Willa Cather
60) The Counterfeiters-Andre Gide
61) The Age of Innocence- Edith Wharton
62) The Good Soldier- Ford Madox Ford
63) The Awakening- Kate Chopin
64) A Passage to India- E.M. Forester
65) Herzog- Saul Bellow
66) Germinal- Emile Zola
67) Call it Sleep- Henry Roth
68) USA Trilogy- John Dos Passos
69) Hunger- Knut Hamsun
70) BErlin Alexanderplatz- Alfred Doblin
71) Cities of Salt- Abd Al Rahman Munif
72) The Death of Artemio Cruz- Carlos Fuentes
73) A Farewell to Arms- Ernest Hemingway
74) Bridgeshead Revisited-Evelyn Waugh
75) The Last chronicle of Barset- Anthony Trollope
76) The Pickwick Papers- Charles Dickinson
77) Robinson Crusoe- Daniel Dafoe
78) The sorrows of Young Werther- Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
79) Candide- Voltaire
80) Native Son- Richard Wright
81) Under the Volcano- Malcolm Lowry
82) Oblomov- Ivan Goncharov
83) Their eyes WEre Watching God- Zora Neal Hurston
84) Waverley- Sir Walter Scott
85) Snow Country- Kawabata Yasunari
86) Nineteen Eighty-four-George Orwell
87) The Betrothed- Allesandro Manzoni
88) The last of the Mohican- James Fenimore Cooper
89) Uncle Tom's Cabin-Harriet Beecher Stowe
90) Les Miserables- Victor Hugo
91) On the Road- Jack Kerouac
92) Frankenstein-Mary Shelley
93) The Leopard-Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa
94) The Catcher in the Rye- JD Salinger
95) The Woman in White- Wilkie Collins
96) The Good Soldier Svejk- Jaroslav Hasek
97) DRacula- Bram Stoker
98) The Three Musketeers- Alexandre Dumas
99) The Hounds of Baskerville-Arthur Conan Doyle
100) Gone wiht the Wind-Margaret Mitchell

Don Quixote review

The first novel in Daniel S. Burt's book was Don Quixote. The only thing I knew about the book before reading it was that it is a parody about knights.

While reading the book I remembered fondly my very first university level paper I ever wrote on Chilvaric love. This paper was wrote for my first year history class, before I even really knew how to write a proper essay. I never understood the idea at the time, but was interested in the topic having spent much of my youth following the anti dating movement popular in Christian circles at the time. I see now that I used the idea of "courting" as a way to opt out of real life (and unfortunately in the process missed out on a whole skill set necessary for relationships with the opposite sex). That, however, is somewhat besides the point.

What pray tell is chivalric love? In my history paper I wrote all about knights with their chaste love of their ladies. Knights in the 15th century roamed the earth providing the world with good deeds done in the names of their ladies. They also composed poems on their behalf, but other than that, had little to no actual contact with the ladies they were enamored with.

Don Quixote paradoies this to the extreme, in that he has never even seen the lady of his affections...but only heard people talking about her. Armed shoddily with homemade armor, a scrawny horse named Rocinante and a humorous and simpleminded page named Sancho Don Quixote sets out into the world in search of adventures. What he finds are several humorous and painful interactions with people who can't believe that "knights errant" exist outside of the novels. Some of these encounters are interesting while others moves slowly and are harder to follow. The people Don Quixote meets generally find him humorous and try to stop his percieved madness by talking him out of his insane venture. Despite that, by the end of the 2nd part of his "history", he has fans who are disappointed when he renounces chilvary and all of knight errantry.

I can't say I took much from the novel except for the notion that following your dreams (no matter how bizarre) brings joy not only to you, but others around you. Despite that fact, the journey is hardly, if ever an easy one.

I did find one quote that I liked:

"Everything beautiful is lovable, but I cannot grasp why, simply, because it is loved, the thing loved for its beauty is obliged to love the one who loves it"

Unrequited love is a sad situation, but cannot be blamed on just the beloved. They are no more obliged to love someone simply because they are loved by them.

Does the novel deserve the title of number one book of all time? Not in my books, although I understand what it was for it's time. The author of "The Novel 100", Daniel S. Burt, makes very certain that people know his list is his personal idea of the greatest novels, and that other people can feel free to differ with him. In fact, he encourages it.

Book two on the list is War and Peace which I have already read (and recently at that). For more information on what I think about that book please read my review in my blog magic-and-mystery.blogspot.com Book three on the list is Ulysses by James Joyce. I am not really looking forward to reading this one, but perhaps it will suprise me! I am aiming to read each of these books in about 3 weeks. I have had some requests to post the booklist, which I will attempt to do even though I have to enter all 100 books by hand. Happy reading folks.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010


Today is the last fun day of our trip. Tomorrow we make the 8 hour trek back home, which will be very sad. :( There will be no pictures with this blog as I left my camera in the car by accident when we picked up our bags to check in. If you are reading this on facebook you can check out my blog at www.magic-and-mystery.blogspot.com

We arrived in Seattle at 11 today and had a few ordeals to start with. I took a few wrong turns when we got to the city and circled for about half an hour. We could tell we were in the right neighbourhood, but we couldn't find the cross street we needed. Thankfully, the circling was done safely with no close calls or near accidents. When we arrived in the parking lot, we wound through 8 floors trying to find a spot and then took the elevator down to street level. This pops you out completely kitty corner to the hotel so we had a hard time figuring out where we were supposed to go. At least when we checked in the hotel people were jovial and very happy to see us. I made a fool of myself spilling all our escapades to them.

The first stop on the map was the Pike Place Market. Thankfully it was much slower than the last time I was there. I took some pictures of the fish throwing, but some Market Spice tea, saw the original Starbucks but did not go in and then we headed on our way.

Lynette and I had lunch at a restraunt called McCormicks and Smicks. It was a fancy seafood restraunt that was reasonably priced. I had a salmon club sandwich and the BEST fries I have eaten in a long time (quite possibly my life). We headed to the Pioneer Square section of Seattle so I could go to the Mystery bookstore and a toy store I had visited the last time I was here. Then we made the extremely long trek to the monorail station and got on it to go to the Experience Music Project/Sci fi Museum. The ride is short, but enjoyable. We didn't have a lot of time to check out the exhibits but we did enjoy them. Then we headed back to the hotel to to officially check in and grab our stuff from the car. This turned out to be a bit of an ordeal.

We rested for a few minutes in the hotel, and headed to dinner. I chose the restaraunt off of my Urban Spoon app. The Wild Ginger is an asian fusion restaruant with lots of different choices. It turned out to be an excellent choice. We ordered some Satay's from their Satay bar and I had a 5 flavor beef dish which was excellent. The restaraunt was quite high end and Lynette and I felt underdressed. The atmosphere was extremely cool though and I would highly recommend it to anyone who is in Seattle looking for Asian food.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010


Today I got to sleep in. It took me awhile to fall asleep in my new digs, because it is HUGE...it feels safer somehow to be in a tiny little hotel room.

When I finally got ready I drove to Puyallup to pick up Lynette and go shopping. I was intent on finding a Ross Dress for Less and succeeded. I dropped a pretty penny there, but bought a cute little 60s style dress, a cook book and a sparkly hat. I also got to shop at a book store. I had a bit of trouble finding something I wanted but mostly because the prices weren't as cheap as I expected. Lynette and I found a store called Honey baked Ham and went to investigate only to discover it was a cafe and take out place. we had delicious sandwiches with banana peppers and chipotle mayo.

I dropped Lynette off at her hotel room and took the shuttle to the fair. It is conveniently located outside Lynette's hotel. I knew I needed to go to the fair because I had been hearing about it for years on the American stations we get in Canada. Sounded fun....and it was. First thing I did when I got there was check out the Mutton Bustin'. This odd sounding activity involves children under the age of 6 hanging onto sheep for dear life. Thankfully the arena is layered in thick mud so even when they fall off it doesn't hurt.

Next I rushed to get to Sinbad high dive show. It was definitely worth it! So much sillyness and some actual amazing feats. There was a silly character named Josephina (a man who carried a purse, pranced around the stage and generally acted silly). They did a lot of dives off the lowere platformss and then did a huge dive off the extremely high platform at the top.

Next I went wandering around the fair until it was time for a magic show. It turns out that it wasn't really a magic show so much as a comedy act. he showed us how to do most of his tricks. At the end the message was quite good. He talked about how his grandpa inspired him to follow his dreams. Once again magicandmystery went to magic show! The one I saw in Courtenay though was WAY better!

Lastly I decided to have the traditional fair dinner, a corn dog and curly fries. The corn dog company was apparently called crusty pups....sounds nasty but was quite good. So essentially, the Puyallup fair was everything that the commercial led me to believe it would be...and more!

Now I am ensconced on my couch watching the season premieres of NCIS and NCIS Los Angeles.

Monday, September 20, 2010


Today started out with breakfast at the Pig'nPancake...a cheesy breakfast joint in Seaside. Since we arrived late yesterday we shopped a little on the boardwalk...I bought some bath salts and that was about it! I did however find a board game called Mr. Bacon's great Adventure, however despite being extremely tempted I decided one bacon related purchase per trip was more than enough.

I had a delicious vanilla pepsi at the soda founatain at Holladay Drugs and we carried on our way. We stopped at an outlet mall in Seaside and found an evilly delicious store called Henry And David(or David Henry). I bought some encredible coffee which I can't wait to get home and try. They also had pumpkin crunch popcorn that nearly put me over the edge.

We drove towards Seattle (me with great trepidation at possibly hitting rush hour traffic). I just about got us lost when I made a wrong turn and drove for twenty minutes while trying to decide if I needed to turn around. Thankfully when I turned around it was the right decision.

I had to rush to get to my hotel because the front desk closed at 5. After checking in Lynette and I drove to her hotel. We met her concert buddy Marcia there. Being in the room with two Adam Lambert lovers was....interesting. I loved listening to Marcia's voice. She is from Milwaukee and has an awesome accent. We chatted for awhile and went for dinner at Applebees and ate WAY too much food. It was suprising how long we sat were there for, but the food was so good! I had to drive to my suite, which was 20 minutes away, in the dark. thankfully I made it safely and I set about making full use of my AWESOME suite. I had a bath in the jacuzzi, made tea, and sat on the couch watching a DVD series that Becky had lent me on my tv/dvd player. All in all I would say it was a good day, despite not being very photo worthy.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Seaside-Round Two

I am sitting in our vintage board game room in Seaside Oregon. It is a super cute boutique hotel in Seaside. This is also round two of my tour of this city as well! I came here about 6 years ago with my friend Cleo. Lynette and I drove for 5 hours to get here and arrived quite late in the day. Since it is a Sunday all of the stores were closed. We didn't mind because we plan on taking time to look at a few places tomorrow.

After freshening up we drove to Cannon Beach which I have never been to before. It was soooo windy at the viewing point that we stopped it. Our hair was blowing every which way and we were having a blast. It didn't make for great pictures though and many of the ones we took were a disaster!

We drove further into town and decided to walk on the beach. I saw the famous Cannon beach rocks and played on some sand dunes. The sand there is so soft, and because of the crazy wind it was blowing in drifts down the beach.

We drove back into Seaside and walked down the main street. I saw one of my favorite places that Cleo and I went to the last time I was here. Seaside has a drugstore that has a soda fountain right inside of it. I am so amused by that because it is so vintage! Yay!

We had dinner at Pudgy's which is a seafood/steak/burger joint. Going with the fact that I am in a seaside town I ordered the dungeness crab sandwich which was delicious!

Now Lynette and I are happily settled into our hotel for the night. One thing of note from our drive down is we crossed the four mile long bridge from Washington State into Astoria, Oregon. Astoria is where they filmed the Goonies and I am such a dork that I brought that DVD and fully intend on watching it while we are here. We stopped for lunch in Raymond, WA at a AMAZING "donut and nacho warehouse" (a little phrase coined on my dorm road trip many a year ago). It was a vintage diner had soda fountain type pop you could order. I chose the Marilyn Monroe which was a pepsi with vanilla in it.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Leavenworth Round 2

I am sitting here in a KOA cabin in Leavenworth, WA. I finally found an adventure to go on for my oh so brief holidays this year. My friend, Lynette was already planning on going to a concert and she just so happened to have several days off to go on a mini road trip. Last summer I came to Leavenworth my cousin and her friend and loved it. Since we arrived late I didn't get to see many of the cheesy Bavarian inspired stores and wanted to play the tacky tourist a bit more. Hence Round two in Leavenworth and the first stop of my 2010 road trip. Tomorrow Lynette and I head off to Seaside, OR which I have also been to before. It is a very cute seaside town at the top of the Oregon coast. I can't wait to get there because we are booked in at a super cute boutique hotel.

So about our adventure today. We manage to be the last car loaded on the ferry seconds before it left. That, sadly, was the end of our good fortune as we had a 40 minute wait at the border and got trapped in a traffic jam for half an hour to forty five minutes. It was hot and Lynette and I were both cranky.

We finally arrived in Leavenworth, checked in and headed out on a night on the town. The last time I was here I wanted to go to the Gingerbread house coffee shop but it was closed by the time I got there. Lynette and I got lattes and delicious soft iced gingerbread heart cookies.

We took lots of cheesy tourist pictures ened up in the infamous Leavenworth Hat store also known as Das Hat Store I believe. After trying on many of the hats in the store I picked up some giant purple sunglasses that I will happily sport about town. Lynette but an awesome fun fur (what I have dubbed scat which is short for scarf hat). The hat has ears and little paw shaped pockets that you can put your hands into. So cute, but very expensive.

We ate at Gustav's restaraunt which has a huge onion dome roof. I made sure to order a bratwurst with Saurkraut which I have discoved I actually do like. We listened to an accordian band at the band shell and made our way back to the cabin. Now we are settled in for the night listening to the crickets and playing on our various computers. Ah the joys of the internet!