So much for that.
Now that it's February, I have to face up to the fact that I failed to finish a single book for the 2011 Battle of the Prizes - American Version. I made great progress on The Known World during a 3-hour block of time last Saturday morning, but it just wasn't enough. I was a major underachiever in the reading department this year.
I feel especially bad about messing up on this challenge. It's a lot of fun, the books are good, and Rose City Reader is a splendid host.
The idea is simple and interesting: Read and compare winners of the Pulitzer Prize for fiction with the winners of the National Book Award. Does one prize have higher standards than the other, or pick better winners, or provide more reading entertainment or educational value?
And my personal favorite question: Is it really true that the Pulitzer winners are "safe" and the National Book Award winners are "cutting edge"?
Read 'em yourself and form your own opinion! Everything you need to know and the sign-up page are here.
Like the guy who fails to drive in the winning run in the World Series, I'll be looking to redeem myself in 2012.
On the bright side, I don't suppose there's anything to stop me from choosing the exact same books for this year's version that I said would read last year. Is there? Only my pride . . . which means the real answer is: heck no.
And so, forthwith,
1. The Known World - Edward P. Jones (Pulitzer winner) (not started until January 2012)
2. World's Fair - E.L. Doctorow (National Book Award winner)
3. Rabbit is Rich - John Updike (winner of both)