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text 2018-05-23 02:29
Summer Reading List 2018
Pete Rose: An American Dilemma - Kostya Kennedy
First Love, Last Rites - Ian McEwan
The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym of Nantucket - Edgar Allan Poe,Richard Kopley
Leviathan - Scott Westerfeld,Keith Thompson
Three Tall Women - Edward Albee
Homegoing - Yaa Gyasi
The Tenant of Wildfell Hall - Anne Brontë

I'm well behind pace in my reading this year. I always say I "average" a book a week, for 52 or so books a year, but I usually exceed that by a fair margin. This year, I'm quite slow. Only 16 so far - even though at least two were "doorstops."

 

So two weeks ago, when I realized I hadn't even considered my summer reading list, I was worried. But when I finally sat down to compose it, the list came flowing straight out. Easy-peasy, less than an hour's contemplation, for sure.

 

The fact I've been using the same nine categories for years, I'm sure, helps considerably. Three books for each month of summer. Things that make me happy and better-rounded. Plenty of room left for serendipity and other titles. Here goes:

The list.

 

1. A baseball book - "Pete Rose: An American Dilemma" by Kostya Kennedy. Reading a baseball book - fiction or non-fiction - is a summer tradition. Thanks, Casey Awards for the ready-made list. 

 

2. A Michael Chabon book - "Pops: Fatherhood in Pieces." This was both tough and incredibly easy. I've read all of Chabon's books, except some very hard to get screenplays and graphic novels. Luckily, he has a new book out this month. It's an anthology of his magazine essays, in the mode of "Maps and Legends," but it's better than none!

 

3. An Ian McEwan book - "First Love, Last Rites." I've read all of McEwan's recent stuff, so I have to reach way back into the Ian Macabre phase, which I like less, but it needs to be done. At least there's a new McEwan adaptation coming out in theaters soon.

 

4. A Neglected Classic - "The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym of Nantucket," Edgar Allen Poe's only novel. Not one that was really on my radar, but read entry five for more "why." 

 

5. A recent "big" book - "Pym" by Mat Johnson. I have the opportunity to hear Johnson read in June, and I think it's time to read his novel, inspired by Poe's, as listed above. 

 

6. A YA book - "Leviathan" by Scott Westerfeld. A steampunk, World War I revisionist novel? Yes, please. 

 

7. A Play - "Three Tall Women" by Edward Albee. It's in revival on Broadway right now with Laurie Metcalf. You know I won't make it to Manhattan, so I'd better finally read it.

 

8. A Recommendation from a Friend - "Homegoing" by Yaa Gyasi. My friend, Laura, suggested it. She didn't have to suggest very hard, because I was already meaning to read it. And she loaned me her copy!

 

9. The book I didn't read from last year's list - "The Tenant of Wildfell Hall" by Anne Bronte. There's one every year. This year's will probably be the Chabon, just because it's new and might be hard to acquire through library means.

 

Well, that's it. I'll post a list on the booklikes list app. Will you read along with me? What's on your list for Summer '18? 

 

-cg

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text 2018-05-11 03:57
Reading progress update: I've read 232 out of 338 pages.
Burial Rites - Hannah Kent

Agnes, Natan, Sigga, and Fridrik, simmering at Illugastadir—tensions and misunderstandings (plus lethal greed?) brewing in these flashbacks.

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text 2018-05-11 01:20
Reading progress update: I've read 187 out of 338 pages.
Burial Rites - Hannah Kent

Now to learn about what happened between Agnes and doomed (horrible?) Natan.

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text 2018-05-10 03:19
Reading progress update: I've read 109 out of 338 pages.
Burial Rites - Hannah Kent

Agnes’ finite, shrunken world, moment to moment, is extremely compelling. but pieces of her personal history, starting with her disappointing parents, and what they did long ago, are slowly being divulged—and those parts are really grabbing me. fabulous book.

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text 2018-05-09 14:58
Reading progress update: I've read 42 out of 338 pages.
Burial Rites - Hannah Kent

Agnes has been transported to the farm where she is to stay, until her planned execution. the family to "host" her is generally unhappy about this being foisted on them, obviously worried about their safety, but some guards, and an Assistant Reverend are also present, for now.

 

it's a wonderful book so far, with a bleakness to it that I expected. I haven't gotten to know Agnes much, yet, though the narrative does shift to her thoughts, her head, every now and then. I think this is going to be a great read.

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