Monday, August 31, 2015

Back From Summer Vacation!

Well, the good news is that I got a lot of reading done this summer. The bad news is that I never went near this blog. I'm sure you all were bereft without hearing what books I've paged through. Fear not -- I kept a summer reading log!

The highlights (books that were five stars for me) were:

The Just City, Jo Walton
Jinx's Fire, Sage Blackwood
Being Mortal, Atul Gawande
The Thrilling Adventures of Lovelace and Babbage, Sydney Padua
Through the Woods, Emily Carroll
The Shadow Hero, Gene Luen Yang
Uprooted, Naomi Novak
Lumberjanes Vol 1, Noelle Stevenson
Castle Hangnail, Ursula Vernon
Strange Fruit, Joel Christian Gill
Popular, Maya Van Wagenen
Curtsies and Conspiracies, Gail Carriger

Looking over this list, I see a large percentage of graphic books, which is not really representative of my reading. I'm not sure whether this is because I only read the best (most of my reading is either huge recommendations by my sons, or from the Cybils award list) or because I read so little that it is easy to impress me.

I'm also in another book club -- my weekly gaming group is now a movie/book club, which so far seems fun. We pick a book to read, and meet weekly via SKYPE to discuss it while simultaneously watching a movie linked somehow to the book. So we saw several cheesy Mars movies while reading The Martian, during which I discovered that no one else had ever read a romance novel, so now we are reading Agnes and the Hitman and I'm looking forward to some good cheesy hitman movies.

Last week I read what looks like an impressive list of books, until you realize how many of them I count as picture books:

Obsession in Death, J.D. Robb
The Lion Who Stole My Arm, Nicola Davies (Cybils early chapter book)
The Family Romanov, Candace Fleming (Cybils nonfiction)
Shadowshaper, Daniel Jose Older
Like Carrot Juice on a Cupcake, Julie Sternberg (Cybils early chapter book)
Extraordinary Warren, Sarah Dillard (Cybils easy reader)
Okay, Andy!, Maxwell Eaton III (Cybils easy reader)
Inch and Roly and the Sunny Day Scare, Melissa Wiley (Cybils easy reader)
Pigsticks and Harold and the Incredible Journey, Alex Milway (Cybils easy reader)
Violet Mackerel's Possible Friend, Anna Branford (Cybils early chapter book)
Lulu's Mysterious Mission, Judith Viorst (Cybils early chapter book)
The Chicken Squad: The First Misadventure, Doreen Cronin (Cybils early chapter book)
Clara and Clem Under the Sea, Ethan Long (Cybils easy reader)
Lulu and the Rabbit Next Door, Hilary McKay (Cybils early chapter book)
Ice Dogs, Terry Lynn Johnson  (Cybils middle grade fiction)
The Martian, Andy Weir (reread, book club)

This weekend gave me a comfortable lead, enough to cover the two days of driving. Bookjourney's "It's Monday" posts are still on hiatus (although she's back to reading and blogging, hooray to her!) but I'll check in with Teach Mentor Texts since I have a pile of kidlit books.

No reading diary, since I was so scattershot at reading that I couldn't keep up. Picture dozens of books picked up, paged through, put down, and you have a sense of how focused I was for most of the week. Well, month.
2015 Challenge Progress:
  1. Cybils 2014: 73/81. I need two more nonfictions, some middle grade books that I'm waiting for, and the other hot books with long library waits. Definitely in much better shape than last year!
  2. Where Am I Reading?: 33/51.  I did not make good progress this summer, but I hope to concentrate on this when I finish the Cybils.
  3. Award Winning Book Challenge: I have apparently stopped reviewing books. But I've ticked off many awards. 
  4. Book Riot Read Harder: 2/24. I still need an African author and a book of short stories.
  5. Alphabetically Inclined:  I V X  Z still missing. 22/26
  6. Best of the Best 2012: 52/25.  I am stalled.
  7. Reading My Library: Woot -- my library reopened! I'm currently reading an audio book, since with the new construction that's the first thing after children's books.