I’ve decided to take part in the Summer Reading Challenge proposed by Oliver de la Paz. The basic rules are that you have three months, June, July, August, to read 15 books, three of which must be chosen from the recommendations/lists of other challenge participants. I’ll link to the blogs I’ve come across in the challenge below, and will keep adding to it when I find more (mostly so far it’s on facebook, and as I guess most of the participants are in the U.S., they’re in a different time-zone so I’ll have to keep checking back on the feed).
Why do it? I’ve become a slower leisure reader over the past few years (I add that ‘leisure’ adjective because I copy-edit and proof-read lots of academic articles for work), and although I have no intention of rushing through books for the sake of ticking off a list – I want to read them, not consume them – I am starting to feel just a little undernourished. Not a good thing for anyone, and especially not good for a writer. What I also like about this challenge is that you must post a response to each book you finish, but it doesn’t have to be a review. Mine probably will be, or a least a commentary of sorts, but I’m looking forward to seeing if anyone else responds differently (photos, poems etc). I’m not sure my response to WCW’s Paterson (which I’d already started) will be anything more than tweeting the occasional quote.
My starting list of 12 has come from books already on my bookshelf waiting to be read, including two I’ve already started. Some of them are short books. Some of them have pictures. One of them is a book for children. I hope to read them all in June and July, and choose/read the final three from other peoples lists (bringing the total up to 15) in August. Challenge ends 31 August.
My Summer Reading Challenge:
William Carlos Williams, Paterson
Roald Dahl, Danny Champion of the World
Andy Warhol, America
Scarlett Thomas, Pop Co
Andrea Levy, Six Stories and an Essay
Paul Morley, Earthbound
Jane Eastoe, The Art of Taxidermy
Jenny Erpenbeck, The End of Days
Kwame Dawes, Wisteria
Peter Hennessey, The Kingdom to Come
Robert Crumb & David Zane Mairowitz, Kafka
Charles Mackay, Some extraordinary popular delusions
and here are other summer reading challenge lists:
Andy Warhol, America; Peter Hennessy, The Kingdom to Come
Roald Dahl, Danny, Champion of the World; Robert Crumb & David Zane Mairowitz, Kafka
William Carlos Williams, Paterson; Kwame Dawes, Wisteria
Paul Morley, Earthbound; Andrea Levy, Six Stories and an Essay; Jenny Erpenbeck, The End of Days; Jane Eastoe, The Art of Taxidermy; Scarlett Thomas, Popco