Rdearman 2016-21 [Presto e bene non marciano insieme]

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Re: Rdearman 2016-21 [Presto e bene non marciano insieme]

Postby DaveAgain » Mon Jun 07, 2021 12:20 pm

rdearman wrote:I have considered ... to stop getting more books until I've completed what I got. :?
It sounds easy, but I've found this hard to do!
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Re: Rdearman 2016-21 [Presto e bene non marciano insieme]

Postby Le Baron » Mon Jun 07, 2021 12:31 pm

I've taken to selecting the books I know will be punishing and deliberately putting them in an awkward box in my storage. Otherwise they sit there taunting you because you can only make it up to page two with a well-thumbed dictionary.

Like rdearman I have people giving me books (in Spanish though) which I have no chance of reading right now. There'll come a time when I can read them, but it isn't now. Putting them out of sight means I can have a pile I can realistically get through, and with pleasure rather than pain! When I finally remember there is a pile of difficult books in the storage I'll hopefully be in the position to read them.
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Re: Rdearman 2016-21 [Presto e bene non marciano insieme]

Postby rdearman » Thu Jun 10, 2021 1:00 pm

Starting on another French book today.



The previous book ("Tours et détours de la vilaine fille") was very good to be honest, and I can see why it won a lot of prizes. I'm not big on love stories, but it is definitely worth a read. Although what all the Peruvian history was about I don't know.

Anyway, the new book "Le démon et mademoiselle Prym" I had actually started before and managed to get up to page 40, but I don't remember much of it, so I need to start again. I thought about doing a lot of intensive work, but to be honest just reading extensively and looking up words when I feel like it seems to be working better. In fact, for most of the last book I was just confirming my suspicions about what the words meant. There weren't that many which I couldn't figure out from context. This book is also half the size of the last one, so should be a bit quicker, and it has actual chapters with chapter breaks. Yay!

I seem to remember this book was a bit to "religiousy/preachy" and that was why I quit it, but this time I have to finish it to complete my goal, so we'll see. It might pick up in the second half of the book like the last one.
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: 10 / 21 21 French Paperbacks Read:

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Re: Rdearman 2016-21 [Presto e bene non marciano insieme]

Postby rdearman » Fri Jun 11, 2021 10:26 pm

OK, completed "Le démon et mademoiselle Prym" tonight. It was meh... Not great, but it was short. It was preachy. So now on to the next book.


This monster has over 600 pages, 633 to be exact. Counts for twelve books for the Super Challenge. This appears to be a mystery set in the Middle Ages. Anyway, we'll see, but this book isn't going to be a quick read by any stretch of the imagination!

I have discovered, of the 21 books I'm forcing myself to read, none of them are really appealing. There is a couple of very old SciFi books, so hopefully they'll be better, but they are quite old, 1960s stuff. Also, I'm thinking I might pull one of the books. It is a parallel text with French and English. This would give me an even 20 books to read, and I'm not too keen on mixing the English and French at this point. I'll have a think about it and see how I get one.

I might do the book, which is a French Play next. It is almost all dialogue (which is always easier for me to read) and it isn't such a monster as this one.
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: 10 / 21 21 French Paperbacks Read:

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Re: Rdearman 2016-21 [Presto e bene non marciano insieme]

Postby rdearman » Mon Jun 14, 2021 10:06 am



Man, this book sucks. :evil: In theory, it should be OK as far as thriller/mystery things go, there was already an attempted murder within the first 10 pages or so, then a huge fire, and a conspiracy. But it sucks! I can't get into it because I'm spending so much time looking things up. It is set in the Middle Ages, and it refers to all kinds of shite that doesn't exist any more, or stuff used by Scribes (the name of the book should have given me a clue).
  • Scriptoria
  • Quill Pen
  • Parchment
  • Wax tablets
  • Book bind
  • Battlements
  • Buttress
  • Codpiece
  • Bodice

The list goes on and on. Plus there is all the normal stuff which is modern, but I didn't know, like maggots, wobble, buttocks, etc. Also, have these authors never heard of dialogue! Why is everything exposition and description. I understand the author wants to set the scene of a scriptorium back in the Middle Ages with pens and wax tables and rows of tables which is located in a walled city filled with dirty peasants, but bloody hell it is hard for a L2 reader.

I really don't know why I continue to torture myself with French, I have absolutely no practical use for it at all. Only another 574 pages of drudgery to go, assuming of course that both the book and myself last that long. That makes me think; I might have just the thing for this book. :twisted: :evil:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9n1S7s5fXxA
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: 10 / 21 21 French Paperbacks Read:

The Autodidactic Podcast
The Lollygagging Podcast

I often post on this forum using mobile devices, so please excuse short messages and typos.

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Re: Rdearman 2016-21 [Presto e bene non marciano insieme]

Postby pinkyslippers » Mon Jun 14, 2021 10:47 am

Put it in the giveaway box (or indeed the stove) and start on the next one! Life is too short for bad books :D
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Re: Rdearman 2016-21 [Presto e bene non marciano insieme]

Postby rdearman » Mon Jun 14, 2021 11:42 am

pinkyslippers wrote:Put it in the giveaway box (or indeed the stove) and start on the next one! Life is too short for bad books :D

True, but it does force me to learn new words in French. Honestly, the book itself probably isn't that bad, it is more likely a problem with the chair to book interface. I think it had pretty good reviews, but it is just because I'm struggling so much with the vocabulary. If I had not lapsed in my French reading, I wouldn't be having so many problems. So this is a personal challenge to myself to just clear the bookshelves and learn some more in the process. I'm also annoyed with myself for constantly stopping and starting languages. It would be much easier on myself if I just worked up some consistency.
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: 10 / 21 21 French Paperbacks Read:

The Autodidactic Podcast
The Lollygagging Podcast

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Re: Rdearman 2016-21 [Presto e bene non marciano insieme]

Postby MorkTheFiddle » Mon Jun 14, 2021 5:51 pm

rdearman wrote:I really don't know why I continue to torture myself with French, I have absolutely no practical use for it at all. Only another 574 pages of drudgery to go, assuming of course that both the book and myself last that long. That makes me think; I might have just the thing for this book. :twisted: :evil:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9n1S7s5fXxA

Henri Robillot translated Fahrenheit 451 into French, and it is available on
Kindle for just $6.99. Nothing to add to your stack, so maybe you should try that before burning any books. :)
But do you use Kobo? Couldn't find it there. :cry:
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Re: Rdearman 2016-21 [Presto e bene non marciano insieme]

Postby rdearman » Sat Jun 19, 2021 5:12 pm

I had a count of my next target. I'm only on the 4th book of my 21 French books, but I went ahead and did a tally of the physical Italian books. Turns out I have fewer of them. I thought I had more Italian than French, but it appears not. Anyway... I have 16 Italian physical books totalling 3943 pages.

I'm not going to put it on my signature block just yet. Still have to power on through the French books. But it will be the next target.

I also have ~10 books in Mandarin! But they will have to wait a little while I think. :)

Quick update on the French book. I've now started to recognize the old-time words and the author seems to have dropped a lot of the description and has now (chapter 4 onwards) got on with telling the actual story. So my reading speed is creeping back up, and I'm doing a page every minute and half. So in a book with more modern vocabulary (Tours et détours de la vilaine fille) I can manage a respectable 150 pages every hour, but with this book I can only do about 84 pages per hour. Which means I've still got another 6 hours of reading to go. Good news is the story is getting more engaging.
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: 10 / 21 21 French Paperbacks Read:

The Autodidactic Podcast
The Lollygagging Podcast

I often post on this forum using mobile devices, so please excuse short messages and typos.

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Re: Rdearman 2016-21 [Presto e bene non marciano insieme]

Postby rdearman » Sat Jun 19, 2021 11:06 pm

Carmody wrote:
Rick
I've decided I'm just going to power through all of them. There are 7025 pages in total, so this is 140.5 books as far as the super challenge is concerned. Since these are all physical paperbacks I'm not going to bother with intensive reading, but I might do intensive (e.g. look up every word I don't know) every 50 pages for a couple of pages. I've also decided that since I have a monolingual French dictionary, I'll look up any words I don't know in that. And any words I don't know in the definition in the monolingual dictionary as well. So one page might turn into a massive spiral of dictionary work!
Thanks for sharing your study plans; I was interested to read what you are going to do.

However, it did make me curious about your goals when you say
I've decided I'm just going to power through all of them. There are 7025 pages in total,
That doesn't sound like much fun to me. Is it fun for you? Everyone has to follow their own bliss but you make it sound like work.

Please advise.


Sorry I realized that I had not answered your question. To be honest, I am saying that I will power through just because I am normally so lackadaisical about study and practice. So this time I have set myself a goal to read these books even if some of them are not the type of book I would normally read for pleasure. Nor are they nonfiction in a subject I would read in. But it isn't always a good thing to read in a narrow range and this more or less random selection of books is expanding my vocabulary.

I love reading and when I was a kid i read anything I could get my hands on. When commuting kon the train i used to average about 10/15 books per week. But reading in a second language is a chore not a pleasure because (i believe) i don't do it enough. If I could get to the same pace as in English with even half the vocabulary coverage i could start reading in french for pleasure. So I plan to power through in hopes of getting that breakthrough where i read for pleasure in French and Italian.
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: 10 / 21 21 French Paperbacks Read:

The Autodidactic Podcast
The Lollygagging Podcast

I often post on this forum using mobile devices, so please excuse short messages and typos.


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