Thursday, October 16, 2014

Readathon Stack Page 99 Test

My readathon stack was getting a bit tall so I decided to shorten it by applying the page 99 test.

First up is one that I didn't mention in my post yesterday (Oct 15, 2014). I added it because I won it in the April Readathon. What a beautiful cover. It has that nice soft matte finish. And a map when you open it. 327 pages. (350 is my limit for Readathon books.)

Page 99: "The irony is, if I were a better son, this thought would make me sad. Instead, it only pisses me off, as does every other thought about Momma."

I read a bit more. Verdict: Keep it in the stack.

Next: The two from my New Vessel Press subscription. A game of dueling titles.
Necktie: 128 pages, told in 114 numbered short sections. Translated from German, set in Japan. Page 99 has #86 which begins: "He was sighing as well. To think this boy had seen into my soul."

Martha: 216 pages. Page 99 has a couple in a restaurant, both hiding be hind newspapers. There is conversation (with waiter and with each other).

"Which direction was she speaking in? Her neatly coifed head slightly cocked like a dove observing its reflection in a puddle, the lady appears to be speaking into a tin can." A neat description since this is about an ornithologist.
Who wins? Me.  I like the format and setting of Necktie. Martha has a certain cachet even if the Martha in the title is not a person, it is my name. Trouble is I stole these from my German Lit month stack. Oh well, it was also too tall and both of these seem perfect for mid-Readathon.

Another short one, an ARC won from words and peace , 160 pages, 46 short chapters.
Page 99. husband and wife, she's reading "... about something called 'the wayward fog' on the Internet." [it has to do with extra-marital affairs]. 'What are you reading about?' the husband asks her from across the room. 'Weather,' she tells him."
When I told Emma at words and peace that I was putting this in my Dewey stack she said it is "perfect for a readathon."  I'll go with that and keep it in the stack.

No need for a page 99 sample from this 306 page book. I read a Wiley Cash book for the April Readathon so I know this will work. And I think it will work at any point in the day.

This brings me to more than 1100 pages. I read 1084 in April.  I'll throw a couple more on the stack in case one (or more) doesn't work.

Both are less than 250 pages and both passed the page 99 test when I purchased them as used books. William Trevor's The Story of Lucy Grant and Christina Garcia's Dreaming in Cuban.

Which means I've selected none from my library list:
Three novellas by Thomas Bernhard ; translated by Peter Jansen and Kenneth J. Northcott
  Leaving this for German Lit month.
Seven Japanese tales by cJun'ichiro Tanizaki; translated from the Japanese by Howard Hibbett
  Don't want to read this one straight through.
Half broke horses: a true-life novel by Jeannette Walls
  Still a possibility 270 pages
The high divide: a novel by Lin Enger
  Also a possibility but it's over 300 pages so maybe not.

And the mail?  Very light so far this week: one history and one fiction that is over the page limit.
And what am I reading today and tomorrow? Short stories.

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