This was my first ever reading group and it was awesome. I read so many amazing things and had a wonderful time writing some of my thoughts. Having a community of people doing the same was fun, I was surprised and interested in the frequency of spontaneous overlaps.
I reached the session target the week before last, but that hasn’t stopped me reading- if anything, it has made me hungry for more. I have already finished one book and begun another since I crossed the finish line, yet I hadn’t, except for in one small comment, acknowledged what I had done. In fact, acknowledging this seemingly small accomplishment is an accomplishment in itself. For too many years I have been undervaluing the things that I do and the meaning those things add to my life.
While I can’t say I wasn’t reading before this, I can honestly say I wasn’t reading enough, I wasn’t reading deliberately and I wasn’t as engaged with my reading beyond a single book at a time. This makes sense, except that approach leaves long gaps between books, gaps that can sometimes extend so long you can’t quite remember when you last picked up a book. Having a definitive goal in mind refocused my attention and my reading has flourished.
The opportunity to write a post about my reading was an enjoyable exercise in distilling my thoughts about a book- but specifically, my engagement with the book to an audience who were also busy engaging in similar ways. What a gift. One of the sidelines of participating in the Winter Session was that it gave me a good opportunity to clear off my bookshelf by 6 books- 4 valuable inches! Oh the wonder. As I mentioned earlier in the session, I wasn’t sure I would actually read all the books I stacked up- and that ended up being true- but it wasn’t because I just didn’t get around to it. My decisions were deliberate and my edits were well thought out. Some, once begun became apparent that they would be a waste of time because I had originally misjudged the book (my bookshelf gained a full inch from that). And I am happily hitting my teenage challenge target of 1 book a week. It’s honestly time to give kudos to past me- and bring some of her healthy habits into the present.
So what did I read?
- House Made of Dawn by N. Scott Momaday 221 pages
- Parkinson’s Law by Northcote Parkinson 113 pages
- What to do when it’s your turn by Seth Godin (90 pages of this book)
- What do I say Next? by Susan RoAne 256 pages
- Raising our children, Raising Ourselves by Naomi Aldort 250 pages
- Ruby by Cynthia Bond 336 pages
- A Room of One’s Own by Virginia Woolf 128 pages
- Lean In by Sheryl Sandberg 172 pages
- The Book Thief by Markus Zusak 553 pages
- People of the Book by Geraldine Brooks 272 pages
The Jungle by Upton Sinclair 475 pages
Chapters and articles (worth mentioning)
Black is Good by Stokely Carmichael in American Cultural Studies: A reader
Literature as a Weapon in the Colonization of the American Indian by Vinc Deloria, Jr. inAmerican Cultural Studies: A reader
Do you struggle with Trump Fatigue? By Manika Boverlein and Clara Jeffery in Mother Jobes Jan+Feb 2018
Reconstructing the Errors from Television History by Marcus Harmes
Race, Marriage, Markets, choice, and some Reflections in Is Marriage for White People? by Perry Twila L. in Gender Law and Policy Fall 2015
What a 19th Century German Pessimist can teach us about getting through a midlife crisis by Kieran Setiya Feb 2018
Queens in Exile, the Forgotten Ones by Sylvia Rivera.