Well, I've finished two books on my Winter Reading Challenge list: Civil To Strangers, and The Flanders Panel. And I've posted my thoughts on "Strangers." So now I need to get to work on a review of "Flanders." (Note to self: get to work!)
Almost got sucked in by yet another challenge. CCDPiper is hosting the "Every Month is a Holiday Challenge," which runs all through 2008 and which sounds like a lot of fun. The rules are pretty loose – just read a minimum of one book a month that has something to do with a holiday or celebration, or some other event occurring during the month (authors' birthdays, etc.).
Finally decided it's a little too scary to commit in January to a whole year of reading, so I'm going to pass it by. But being an inveterate list-maker, I thought it would be fun to put together my own private challenge along those lines. Haven't got a whole year's worth yet, but here's what I've put together so far:
International Creativity Month (who knew?) – Crewel World, by Monica Ferris. I'm reading this one right now.
Lots of interesting events, etc. to choose from in February:
Black History Month – Wrapped in Rainbows: The Life of Zora Neale Hurston, by Valerie Boyd.
Library Lovers' Day (isn't that everyday?) – The Grand Complication, by Alan Kurzweil. I'd be reading this one for the Winter Reading Challenge as well, but both challenges allow overlapping.
Also, possibly From the Mixed-up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler, by E.L. Konigsburg (born 10 February 1930). Again, I'd be overlapping this one – reading it for the Young Readers Challenge, too.
Birthday of Gabriel Garcia Marquez (6 March 1927) – Love in the Time of Cholera (also reading this one for the Winter Reading Challenge).
Unique Name Day – Yonie Wondernose, by Marguerite deAngeli (who was also born in March – how neat is that?). Again, a possible Young Reader overlap.
Another month chock-full of dates and happenings to commemorate:
National Poetry Month – Poets in Their Youth, by Eileen Simpson. I was feeling sad about having to delete this title from my list of books for the Winter Reading Challenge – decided to substitute The Concord Quartet instead. But it's perfect for National Poetry Month, so I can still keep it on my list of books to read this year.
Birthday of Maud Hart Lovelace (25 April 1892) – Betsy-Tacy, overlapping with the Young Readers Challenge.
Birthday of Beverly Cleary (12 April 1916) – Any of the Ramona books; I've never read any of them!
Arbor Day – Well, there must be a nice book about trees out there somewhere.
William Shakespeare, Washington Irving, Hans Christian Andersen, Ngaio Marsh, Charlotte Bronte, Edna Ferber, Eudora Welty, Queen Elizabeth II, and my mother were all born in April, too. So, as I said, lots of possibilities.
Mothers Day – Hated to do this, but I've never read it and always intended to: Portnoy's Complaint, by Philip Roth.
Fathers Day – March, by Geraldine Brooks. The imagined Civil War experiences of the father of Louisa May Alcott's "Little Women."
Beginning of Summer – Three Junes, by Julia Glass. I've had it on my summer reading list for two years now.
Birthday of Nathaniel Hawthorne (4 July 1804) – The Marble Faun. Didn't realize he was a Yankee Doodle guy.
Sisters Day – The Peabody Sisters, by Megan Marshall. Well, this is just pie in the sky. At 580 pages, including notes, this one is much too long for me to finish in one month – especially a month when I'll be looking for short, relaxing beach reads! But this is a make-believe list, so I can allow myself make-believe speed reading powers.
And that's as far as I've gotten. And that's probably as far as I should go with this. Wouldn't it be more sensible to stop listing and start reading? (She asked herself, sensibly.)