I'm getting to the end of this list, so close! Although, I have to confess that I have cheated slightly and got rid of a few without reading them, which reduced the pile somewhat. I'm going to defend this action and say that the ones I got rid of, just didn't appeal any more; either I'd had them for so long and I'd changed my mind about the blurb on the back, or they were books I'd just acquired without any particular interest, simply because I never turn a free book down. But I realised, this New Year's resolution was still supposed to be enjoyable, so I figured it wouldn't do me any favours to keep on the list books I'm just not interested in reading.
Far From The Madding Crowd
by Thomas Hardy
It took me a while to get through this, partly due to doing other stuff, and also I just wasn't that enamoured with it. There were odd parts that were definitely beautiful, and Hardy's descriptions of the countryside and farming life are particularly evocative. However, I didn't really like the way he portrayed the characters, nor his insight into human emotions - particularly womens'. I got the impression several times throughout the book that Hardy didn't much like women or respect them, and even though Bathsheba was a really strong, self-willed, independent character, for all that I don't think she was written in a particularly likable way.
(look at that cover! Isn't it gloriously retro?)
Lady Chatterley's Lover
by D.H. Lawrence
This book I enjoyed much more; which surprised me, as I didn't much enjoy the other D.H. Lawrence book I have read (Women In Love). It didn't seem quite so pretentious as Women In Love.
Although there was still a lot of expostulating on theories of love, class and society, it somehow fit better in this novel and didn't seem quite so obviously a vehicle for Lawrence's own theories and beliefs about life. The scenes between the two lovers were passionate, without being overly sentimental - overall, a really rather good book.
I only have three books left on my list - and two of those are ones that have been added since the start of January. I aim to have the list completed by the end of April, fingers crossed!