Wednesday, January 23, 2013

The Year of Reading

The past three years I have made the goal of reading 50 books during the year. This is how the past three years shaped up...
2010: I read 44 books. 
2011: I read 43 books. 
2012: I read 37 books. 

Last year I kinda gave myself a pass mid year since I was moving across the country, buying a house and getting settled into a new town. Now that I've been in Sacramento for almost six months and it's the start of a new year, it's time to get my read on. I got a few books for Christmas and I was able to read two of them before the end of the year so those went on 2011's totals. I'm adding to my list of books I can read this year so if you have any suggestions please let me know! One of my best friends, Erica, mentioned Gone Girl so I need to pick that one up. She also recommended Divergent which I've already picked up. 

Did I mention she's a librarian? She use to blog and I'm begging her to start a blog that's nothing but book reviews. DOOOO IT! She lives in South Carolina and has a cat named Hansolo who I fondly refer to as fancy duds. 

Anyways, let's get back to the books! I've already finished my first read of 2013 and it was a biography. It was Total Recall: My Unbelievably True Life Story by Arnold Schwarzenegger. 
I've always been a fan of Arnold's work. I love his movies. I love the fact that he came from a small town in Austria and made himself into a multi-millionaire. He left behind his family, his friends and everything that was familiar to him. He left so he could pursue a dream. He was hanging it all on the hopes that his dream would come true. He buckled down and worked hard. I think the self discipline it took for him to become the best bodybuilder was incredible. He believed in himself when others told him he couldn't do it. He said yes when other people said no. 

I know that a lot of people have strong feelings and opinions on Arnold. Usually you either love him or hate him. Then there is that tiny little fraction of people who just don't know that much about him besides the fact that he was governor of California and his long movie career. In his new book, Arnold sets out to tell the ups and downs of his personal and professional life. He gives readers full disclosure on all the nitty gritty details of his life since childhood. He talks about off screen affairs. His fears of becoming a married man. He's desire to succeed in bodybuilding then in movies. He also shared his stories of real estate success and mail order catalogs. 

The book is over 600 pages. The first 400 were very easy to read and entertaining. Then came the part about his becoming California's Governor or should I say Govenator? Haha! Once Arnold starts talking about being governor and all of the issues and politics that he was involved in, the book got a little.... dry. The only thing that saved the end of the book was his last chapter entitled: The Secret. Yep... he talked a whole chapter about his secret child. 

If your like me you had already heard all about his secret love child and his impending divorce with Maria. The chapter talks about how the secret came out. How and when he found out he was the father of the boy and how he dealt with it. He also talks about what he hopes to come and how sorry he was for it. I felt like he really came clean in this book. He talked about a lot of things he could not of or lied about. He gave details that made him not come off great and it's my opinion that he was probably telling the truth. I mean if you are going to lie wouldn't you paint the best picture of yourself that you could? 

I recommend the book. The last chapters were a little dull but all in all it was a good book. It also had some great photos to back up his life story. 


Carol {Everyday Delights} said...

I am SO impressed with all your reading - great job!

Why Girls Are Weird said...

I find it funny when people comment over how many books I read in a year because most reading enthusiasts read more than me... you've beat me every year!

shopgirl said...

Wow!! I can't believe how many books you read in a year! That's just stupendous! Well, I am a movie fan of Arnold, and like you I admire his tenacity and persistence. I don't know him so I can't judge him or his personal life. However, he's come a long way from a little town in Austria, and I know lots of immigrants and foreigners who are embarrassed by their accent and Arnold has a distinct accent and yet he puts himself out there. You gotta admire that!

Cheers sweetie!

Claire Kiefer said...

I'm all about reading this year as well. I got a kindle for Christmas and that's totally made me want to read more. :) I can understand why this book was interesting, but I think I'm gonna have to skip it b/c I am not Arnold's biggest fan. :( He was elected right after I moved to California, and I was appalled that we elected a movie star who did not have the credentials to become governor. He was responsible for SO MANY education cuts, got rid of the arts programs in the prisons state-wide, and spent millions on a brand new death row. Plus, he okayed the execution of Stan Tookie Williams (among others), which is the dearest issue to me. Ugh.

Gone Girl is amazing. You won't be able to put it down! I read Divergent in December and really liked that too. :)

Shoshanah said...

I'm not a huge fan of Arnold, but I don't necessarily dislike him either. We did see his new movie The Last Stand this past weekend, and I really loved it. I definitely think it's one you're really going to enjoy as well!

Unknown said...

I need to calculate how many books I've been reading. I have Gone Girl on my kindle hold for the library. I just read a book called The Night Circus. READ IT! It was amazing. best book I've read in a while.