Well anyway. The Bout of Books readathon wrapped up yesterday. So how did I do?
My goal was to get back into a reading rhythm. Meaning: I wanted to be able to get lost in a book without having half or one-quarter or two-thirds of my brain thinking about other things. Meaning: I didn’t keep track of how many pages or hours I read, just the books I read. Here’s the final list with a little asterisk next to books that fulfill #ReadMyOwnDamnBooks.
Mission “get lost in a book” accomplished with these two fabulous books. Beaton’s Hamish Macbeth series is bliss. It’s an odd thing to say about murder mysteries, but there we are. Her stories have a wonderful sense of place and characters that are, for the most part, fully drawn. Each has her or his foibles and virtues. And the writing is lovely and witty and smart.
Read A Year by the Sea by Joan Anderson *
Anderson’s memoir is about the year she takes a time-out from her marriage and life. She moves to her family’s cottage on Cape Cod, takes on jobs around town (in a fish market, clamming), and has epiphanies. I’ll have more to say about this book after I’ve had a think about it. For now, I’ll say my favorite parts were her descriptions of the natural world, which were lovely and transporting.
Read Winnie the Pooh by A. A. Milne *
This book is like chocolate: It chases away dementors (metaphorically speaking). The characters are so endearing and their adventures so heartening. Nothing is perfect in the Hundred Acre Wood, but it’s a lovely community! I used to think Pooh was my favorite. But I might be going over to Camp Piglet…
Read Books 5 – 10 in The Odyssey by Homer *
I love this poem. But I realized something this week: It’s not a book I can read in large doses. It demands to be read slowly and carefully and to be savored. My new strategy is to read one or two books a day.
Finished Harry Mount’s Odyssey: Ancient Greece in the Footsteps of Odysseus by Harry Mount
Mount has a charming, self-deprecating voice. Meanwhile, he’s erudite and knowledgeable. The book is overflowing with fascinating info delivered with (at times) a somewhat gossipy vibe that makes it fun and engrossing. I’m so thankful to this Guardian review for introducing me to Mount’s book.
Ah, I do love readathons. And I only have to wait five more days until the next one: Take Back Your Shelves starts Friday!