Dec 8, 2011

The Challenge of Culling Books


I have been trying to cut down on some of the books that I own.  I have A LOT of books and I would like to continue having LOTS of books, but I am trying to be realistic about how many books I can have and how many I will actually read. I have identified adult contemporary and historical fiction as being a little low on my reading totem pole.  I have decided to sort through those types of books and discard any of the ones I feel l am pretty unlikely to read ever/any time soon. Some books I know will be readily available in ebook format at the point in which I do decide to read them. Other books I know I will never read, that they were an error in judgment to get in the first place. A lot of time I am lured in more by the price of a book than by its contents.


Considering this there are still books I really feel like I want to read, but I need to get to them soon. So I have a pile of about 20 or so books that I am setting aside with the caveat that any that do not get read in the next 6 months have to be donated. I have LOTS of books that I am keeping just because and some of these I may change my mind on. It is weird how the cover of a book can have sentimental value.


Today I am posting 6 of the books I have set aside to read first. There are a lot of books on the pile and they are all adult. Considering that I only read about 4 adult books a year, it is pretty unreasonable to think I will get though even this pile of 6. Part of that is the point of this whole exercise, teaching me to be realistic about the books I need and want to keep. I would love your suggestions on what to read first and also if you see any books that you think belong in my permanent collection, I would love for you to make a case for them.


Without further ado, here are the books:


I Was Amelia Earhart by Jane Mendelsohn

Plum Wine by Angela Davis-Gardner


Anil’s Ghost by Michael Ondaatje


How to Be Lost by Amanda Eyre Ward

The Undomestic Goddess by Sophie Kinsella


Like Water For Chocolate by Laura Esquivel


And there we have it. I few books that I am thinking about reading before June. What do you think? What books do you like? Out of the 20 books in the pile I tried to pick some that I wanted to read the most first. I would love any input you have on these books OR your experience getting rid of books, especially those you haven’t read yet.

Dec 6, 2011

Reading in 2012

Every year as it draws closer to the next I start to reflect on what I have read and what I want to read. I always make a lot of goals but I am not very good at following through with them.  This year I am trying to make some easier goals that fall more in line with my natural reading, rather than expanding out to read something new.  In the past I have tried to read more book with characters from diverse ethnic backgrounds and while I now have used that experience to help inform future reading choices I don’t want to worry about focusing on reading a certain number of books in a year.  Also diversity is hard to find when it comes to science fiction specifically, there are very few books that really deal with race or show other cultures and it is even harder to know which ones those will be going into the reading.


This year I know I am going to be reading a few more fairytale retellings than I have in the past few years. This has been an interest of mine for a while, but recently I haven’t been making  point to read these type of books. Ever since I heard about Ashley from Basically Books dedicating 2 weeks in April to these types of stories I haven’t been able to get the idea of reading them out of my head. There are so many to choose from it is definitely going to be hard to decide what to read, but it is also fun to use these readings as  reason to research the original folk and fairytales. I have a lot of these books already and here are some I am thinking about reading.


Gail Carson

Edith Pattou

Briar Rose
Jane Yolen
Sisters Red
Jackson Pearce
Sun and Moon, Ice and Snow
Jessica Day George

What fairytale retellings have you enjoyed reading? What do you think it is about these types of stories that is so appealing? I think we like stories that surprise us and fairy tales are often such a part of our ingrained culture it is fun to see how they can be changed.

Two of my favorite times of the year blog wise are February and August because these are the months that Lenore dedicates the WHOLE month(s) talking about dystopian novels and interview authors and having amazing giveaways.  As most of my readers know I am a HUGE dystopian buff. I have a huge pile of dystopian books to read here, especially young adult ones.  Here are  few I am thinking about reading.


Fahrenheit 451
Ray Bradbury
Elizabeth Scott
The Unit
Ninni Holmqvist
The Line
Teri Hall



I was having a great discussion on Twitter that reminded me how much I love books that tie In with music some how. I can really only think of two books that I have read that tie in with contemporary music. Audrey, Wait! and Getting Over Jack Wagner were both particularly fun reads. After reading them close together I went on a book buying spree to get any music related book I could. Unfortunately the spree didn’t last that long and I only ended up with a handful of books. Here is a list of some of the books I already have to read that are related to music.


I Wanna Be
Your Joey Ramone

Guitar Girl
Sarra Manning
Drums, Girls,
Dangerous Pie

Jordan Sonnenblick



Do you have any reading goals or books you would like to focus on reading?  I hope that I get a lot of reading done in 2012. Coming off the back of one of my worst reading years ever I need a lot of change in my life.  Even as I type this I am finding it hard to motivate myself to read. What do you do when this happens to you?


Do you have any books in these categories that I definitely should not miss? Please make sure you let me know in the comments and I will see what I can do!

Dec 4, 2011

The Sunday Salon–Holiday Reading

The Sunday

Well, I have had another bad reading week. Before this week I have been steadily reading and finishing books but I think Thanksgiving threw a wrench in everything and I haven’t quite recovered yet. As fun as it is to get together with friends and family during the holidays, it sure does cut into my reading time. We were out of town for a few days before Thanksgiving and I actually read more late at night while we were staying with family than I have since we got home. There is something about night in a quiet house that isn’t your own that makes you want to seek out comfort in a book.


When it comes to the holidays do you read different types of books? I think sometimes I am a little bah humbug about it all because I am a bit of a minimalist when it comes to holidays. I don’t want a lot of what I am reading to reflect what is going on in my real life, though  I am considering reading Let It Snow if I have time before the end of the year.  I really feel the time ticking away on the year and I always try and make sure I get my goal books read. So there is very little holiday reading going on.



Today I am going to finish up If I Stay by Gayle Forman.  So far it has been interesting but a little underwhelming.  When I am done with it I am finally going to dive into Crossed.  I have been putting off reading it so I could come to it ready to read and I think I am finally there. Last night I also started In the Garden of Iden by Kage Baker which I am really enjoying so far. Do you have any books you want to make sure you read before the end of the year?

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