Spring Reading Thing Finished!
Spring has ended and with it my time for the Spring Reading Thing Challenge. Of course I began with lofty goals and by some definition fell short. I was hoping to be more deliberate and focused in my reading, and in many ways that happened. I did complete all the review copies I originally listed, and then some! That was the only category that I finished.
A Woman’s Call to Prayer
Portugal’s Golden Years: The Life and Times of Prince Henry “the Navigator”
In the fiction category I finished three out of four. I am the most proud of finishing Crime and Punishment. I have attempted many times before but this time I actually read the whole book. I did not like it very much. I fully expected to love it but found it frustrating. It was the whole philosophical experiment element that got me: I just don’t appreciate it. My apologies to all the Dostoyevsky fans out there.
The Gift Of Asher Lev was a fascinating return to Chaim Potok. I have enjoyed the other books by him about Asher Lev. I did like this one, just not as much as the other three. I like younger Asher better. Chaim Potok always manages to make me want to read more about Judaism in America. My Dad introduced me to these books and I’m glad I finally read them.
I can’t say enough in praise of Had a Good Time: Stories from American Postcards by Robert Olen Butler. I LOVED those stories. They were not all happy but they were all good. I cannot get over this idea… there are real postcards and news articles and Butler takes those and comes up with a whole scenario. Read it: you won’t regret it.
I also finished Russka: The Novel of Russia and The Mysterious Benedict Society Collection trilogy. I am pretty happy to have discovered the Benedict books. They will go on my shelf of re-reading frequently along with Harry Potter, Eragon, Stephen Lawhead and the Peterson brothers for when I feel the need for an adventure in another world. Russka was ok but I think I’ve had my fill of the epic, sweeping, time saga genre for a while.
The non fiction category is the one that got me. I only finished Almost a Womanby Esmerelda Santiago. I didn’t really love it but for some reason am compelled to find her other books. I did really enjoy her writing but there were too many unnecessary “near scenes” for me. I want to know what happens to this girl but I am pretty sure I don’t want to wade through all the inappropriate behavior to find out. I started several other books in this category but I haven’t finished them yet.
So 11 out of 19 books is what I finished. That’s not terrible, right? Especially when you consider how many other books I read during that time. I primarily blame Mrs. Pollifax. A friend lent me the first two and I immediately used my birthday money to track down most of the series on amazon. I read ELEVEN of them. I also got distracted by Carolyn Turgeon and more review copies. I don’t regret those discoveries. Next time I want to leave room for discovering new books.
Choosing a favorite book is a little hard. I think I have to go with Had a Good Time: Stories from American Postcards although Where Lilacs Still Bloom: A Novelis also a contender. If I am including books that I did not originally set out as a goal for this challenge it would be The Unexpected Mrs. Pollifax for sure.
Thanks to Callapidder Days for hosting this challenge! I cannot wait until the Fall Into Reading one. I am already determined to meet my goals for that one. It has been really fun to see what other people read.