A few weeks ago I came across an old and highly inflammatory post from Slate (shocking – Slate being inflammatory!) titled “Against YA” that was based on the premise that adults should be ashamed of reading YA books. If you want to get angry you can read that post here. Shortly after reading the article, I attended BEA (Book Expo) where I was surprised to find a very heavy emphasis on YA books. I came pretty close to being smothered to death when I accidentally became part of a crowd trying to snag a copy of a YA book. And the people attempting to smother me weren’t teenagers or young adults in their early 20s. They were squealing adults (I kid you not, there was squealing galore) around my age – in their 30s and older. So what is our fascination with YA and why do so many adults feel driven to consume literature created for 12-17 year olds? Read more
Posts from the ‘The reading life’ Category
This weekend I decided in the spur of the moment to take part in Dewey’s 24-Hour Readathon. The readathon took place Saturday from 8am EST to 8am EST on Sunday. 1950 readers participated in the event across various platforms including Facebook, twitter, instagram, book tube, and various blogging platforms sites.
It was my first every readathon and I clearly had no idea what I was doing. I have to admit that my first thought when I heard about it was that it was rather silly. I mean I read a lot already, did I really need to try to set aside a day for reading. I was wrong because it was so much more than just a bunch of people sitting alone in their houses reading. The day was filled with mini challenges and fun activities and conversation via various social media sites.
Of course I did it all wrong since I didn’t prepare at all. I picked the wrong book(s) to read, I didn’t protect my time, and I didn’t plan out food/snacks. Here’s what my day looked like:
8-9am: Started reading. Book selected – House of Leaves by Mark Danielewski. Trust me – this was the wrong book to pick.
9am-10: Found out my 5-year old needed cleats for soccer practice. Went to store in a panic to buy cleats. Zero reading
10-11am: Got my daughter ready for soccer. Zero reading
11-12pm: Soccer practice. I took a book with me but ran into other parents and spent the hour talking to them and watching soccer practice. 5 year olds playing soccer is amusing to watch. Zero reading.
12-1pm: Had lunch. Zero reading
1-3pm: Cleaned the house because family were coming over for dinner later. Zero reading
3-4pm: Reading! I actually was able to read for the whole hour while my daughter played downstairs
4-5pm: Set the table, played with my daughter. Zero reading
5-8pm: Dinner. Family came over. Zero reading.
8-3am: Reading! For the first time all day I had time to sit for more than an hour and read. I finished House of Leaves (our joint review to follow later this week). I started Love in a Cold Climate by Nancy Mitford.
3-7:30am: Sleeping. I’m past the age where all-nighters are appealing or possible. I normally go to sleep around 10 – 11pm so 3am was an accomplishment.
7:30-8am. Read more of Love in a Cold Climate.
Total tally: I read 1.5 books for a total of 660 pages. House of Leaves was 705 pages but I had already read 100 pages before I started. Some of those last pages were an “index” and images. I managed an extra 55 pages of my second book.
As you can see, I did a terrible job of reserving time to read. I happen to be a very fast reader so I was able to read quite a few pages despite not reading for the majority of the day. House of Leaves was probably the worst book to pick in terms of cleaning up my TBR. I did really enjoy it (Book Worm and I differed on this as you will see this week) but it’s a hard book to breeze through with all the formatting styles — having to get up and look at passages in the mirror and work my way through the crazy maze like sections.
Overall it was really fun because of all the extras. I did check in to social media (twitter, Facebook, goodreads) throughout the day to see how others were doing and to participate in a few of the mini challenges. I saw a few of you, our lovely readers and fellow bloggers, posting answers too!
The hosts of the event did a great job, as did all the volunteers. They have organized a second one for October 22, 2016 and this time around, I’d like to prepare in advance. Maybe some of you will also join us? I’ve debated whether or not we (Book Worm and I) should volunteer to host a mini challenge for the next one.
We want to hear from you. Did you participate in this readathon? How did you do? Would you want to participate in the future?
It’s official. It has been one year since we started this blog! We want to give a sincere thank all of you for following us and participating in our challenges. We’ve loved hearing your thoughts on books and discovering all of your creative choices for our challenges. We hope you stay with us through the second year of the blog and we look forward to welcoming new readers!
For our one-year anniversary, we’ve been thinking about ways to improve and expand on the blog. We want to share some of our plans for 2016 and we’d love to get your feedback on the things you like most and least about your experiences here. Without further ado, here are some of our plans: Read more
A close friend recently posted a request for reading recommendations on her Facebook page. I responded with some admittedly embarrassing recommendations which I won’t list here again but, suffice it to say, they were mostly within the urban fantasy and young adult genres. I even may have noted the words “witches” and “vampires.” This is a smart, intellectual friend. We suffered through our doctoral programs together. So, she has smart friends and most of them recommended top quality literature. Think Hemingway, Woolf, Tolstoy and you get the idea.
So, what happened to me? Why did I have to fight the urge to post “yeah, Anna Karenina is great and all but have you tried Divergent?” To put it in context, my friend recently had a baby and was asking about books to read while nursing. I was remembering myself during my first 3 months (okay more like 6 months) post-baby. The notion of trying to read Hemingway, let along Woolf, during those months was hilarious. While every woman’s experience after childbirth is unique, mine was not one of endless quiet, reflective moments – the type well-suited to reading quality literature. Read more