I tried reading "Le pas de Merlin" and "Le nom de la rose". I just couldn't get into "Le pas de Merlin". I enjoyed (what I read) of "Le nom de la rose" much more, even if I actually understood less of it. Unfortunately, I don't feel like I can commit the time I want to read "Le nom de la rose" (due to various work and schooling obligations..) I'll have to make sure to pick it up again when I have a bit more free time.
In my French oral communication class, it's very interesting for me to see the huge disconnect between what I've learned from books and studying on my own (grammar, passive vocab, good accent) and my total inability to get up in front a group of people and speak freely. I certainly don't have fear of public speaking while working in English, but I was totally frozen when I had to get up and give an introduction to a (fictitious) speaker about to give a presentation at a (fictitious) conference.
Similarly, and I posted a question about this on HTLAL/General Questions room, I'm having a hard time accepting that my home work in French (for the course) simply will not be up the standards I'd expect if I were doing it in English. This I think is my next big challenge.. (that is, adjusting my expectations not necessarily improving my French to fluency in the next couple weeks before my course finishes...)
I listened to a bunch of Utopod episodes. I didn't like most of them except for the one about the time machine. It was actually a monologue that, if I had the script to, I'd probably try to learn. I did theater back in high school (above: no fear of public speaking or performance), so learning the raw text shouldn't be a problem. It's like some crazy extended Assimil dialog..
Had some vague thoughts about doing Toastmasters in French, once my class is finished of course. We'll see..
I picked up Assimil's "Business French" book. I'm liking it.
I wish Antidote RX would update their Firefox plugin to work with 3.5.