Many of my reading friends have devoured The Invisible Bridge and awarded it the highest ratings and best reviews on Goodreads, so it has been on my "virtual to-read stack" (meaning, hold at the library) for quite some time. I guess everyone else has been waiting anxiously for it as well, since my holding period was almost over one month. This book has heft, and I was concerned about reading two chunksters at once (also still working on The Name of the Wind); however, once I got about twenty pages into this story while waiting for the husband's car to get an oil change, I was hooked. HOOKED. This book is already worth all of the attention it received in 2010 and I can't wait to continue reading. The story is so fantastic and the writing is really good. Here's hoping I can wind up the remaining 450 pages before I must turn it back over to the library for the next patron playing the waiting game. Here's a summary of the plot, taken from www.goodreads.com:

Julie Orringer’s astonishing first novel—eagerly awaited since the publication of her heralded best-selling short-storycollection, How to Breathe Underwater (“Fiercely beautiful”--The New York Times)—is a grand love story and an epic tale of three brothers whose lives are torn apart by war.

Paris, 1937. Andras Lévi, a Hungarian Jewish architecture student, arrives from Budapest with a scholarship, a single suitcase, and a mysterious letter he has promised to deliver to C. Morgenstern on the rue de Sévigné. As he becomes involved with the letter’s recipient, his elder brother takes up medical studies in Modena, their younger brother leaves school for the stage—and Europe’s unfolding tragedy sends each of their lives into terrifying uncertainty. From the Hungarian village of Konyár to the grand opera houses of Budapest and Paris, from the lonely chill of Andras’s garret to the enduring passion he discovers on the rue de Sévigné, from the despair of a Carpathian winter to an unimaginable life in forced labor camps and beyond, The Invisible Bridge tells the unforgettable story of brothers bound by history and love, of a marriage tested by disaster, of a Jewish family’s struggle against annihilation, and of the dangerous power of art in a time of war.

Finally Friday is the new feature on Book Addict that will provide you with a glimpse into my reading weekend. Whether I am about to start a new book, continue, or finish one, I will tell you all about it. In the comments section, please share what you plan on reading during the weekend.

If I were not a moderator of a book group, I probably never would have come across The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss (Kingkiller Chronicle #1) because I do not generally read much from the fantasy genre. Our current theme, "Start a Series", has introduced me to a variety of books I hope to read very soon, including A Game of Thrones which is being adapted into a highly anticipating miniseries on HBO. This chunkster of a story was nominated and eventually selected because of its high ratings and positive reviews on goodreads.

While it took me about 100 pages to get into the story, I immediately loved Rothfuss's writing style and admired his creativity in developing a setting unlike anywhere I have ever "visited" in a book. He has already been compared to J.R.R. Tolkien, and after finally reading and loving The Fellowship of the Ring at the end of last year, I knew I needed to keep reading. I am just over halfway through the book and hope to read a couple hundred more pages before Sunday night arrives.

If you like fantasy, this should definitely go on your to-read shelf. If you're hesitant to read fantasy like I was, this should definitely go on your to-read shelf. This is great storytelling for anyone who truly wants transported through reading.

From goodreads:
The story revolves around Kvothe, an enigmatic red-haired innkeeper who, as he shares his incredible life story with a renowned scribe, turns out to be much more than he appears. Born into a family of nomadic court performers, Kvothe's unconventional education was broadened by spending time with fellow travelers like Abenthy, an elderly arcanist whose knowledge included, among other things, knowing the name of the wind. After his parents are brutally murdered by mythical beings known as the Chandrian, Kvothe vows to learn more about the godlike group, and after suffering through years of homelessness, he finally gets his chance when he is admitted into the prestigious University. But the pursuit of arcane knowledge brings with it unforeseen dangers, as the young student quickly learns.

What might hold up my progress in the epic fantasy described above? The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks, a fantastic non-fiction debut from Rebecca Skloot that made several "Best of 2010" lists and is extremely difficult to put down. I have teared up a few times reading this fascinating glimpse into science and the woman who unknowingly contributed to some incredible medical breakthroughs, but the story of Henrietta Lacks and the HeLa cells is one I would recommend to anyone.

Also currently on the nook on loan from the local library: Bloodroot by Amy Greene, a family saga woven with secrets and magic in Greene's native Appalachian Mountains.

In a previous posting, I further admitted my book illness by revealing my stats in 2009 and thus far in 2010. (Thank you goodreads for making us reading nerds track our books at a new level of embarrassment.) As you can see by the numbers below, I exceeded my 2009 record by just seven books, although I think the page count is more telling. To see EVERY SINGLE one of these 179 titles, click on "Quick Peeks" in the menu - the books are available for your viewing pleasure as a colorful and nerdy montage. (No, I did NOT take the time to do this...goodreads has a great little HTML widget that updates it for me!) You can also check out where I stand so far in 2011.

For full reviews of these books and everything else I read, follow me on goodreads or click on the new feature in the menu called "2011 in Books," which gives you even easier access to my thoughts on what I read. I know. Your year is already off to a great start with the book addict.

Number of Books Read in 2009 - 172
Number of Pages Read in 2009 - 51,452

Number of Books Read in 2010 - 179
Number of Pages Read in 2010 - 53,923