Dewey 24 Hour Readathon!

Saturday, April 25, 2020

********  UPDATED HOUR 16 ********
This is my 17th readathon (see links below). Here's a link for more info about the Dewey Readathon. Today you can find me posting on Litsy and Instagram as @avidreader25 as well as here. For years Heather and Andi have hosted this amazing event. This is their very last time as the hosts. The readathon will continue, but they will be missed! 

My first readathon was in April 2011, when my dog Ollie (pictured) was just a tiny pup! Since then I've met friends and read thousands of pages during the readathons. I've read while hugely pregnant, while sitting next to someone I love in a hospital room, on road trips, and more. It's become something I look forward to. Throughout the year I set aside books I know would be perfect for the readathon. In short, it is a community that I love and means the world to me.

Reading Stats:
Pages Read:
 683
Currently Reading: Farewell Summer and Everything, Everything 
Books Finished: Every Brilliant Thing, How to Be a Good Creature, Fox 8, The Princess Diarist
Snacks Eaten:
Spinach eggs, mint chocolate almonds, pickles, chips & salsa


Mini-Challenge
My Readathon Memories

Introduction Quiz:
1) What fine part of the world are you reading from today?
 

Indianapolis

2) Which book in your stack are you most looking forward to? 

Every Brilliant Thing

3) Which snack are you most looking forward to? 

Dark chocolate mint almonds

4) Tell us a little something about yourself! My second kiddo just celebrated her 1st birthday this week! I also love to travel and see live theatre.

5) If you participated in the last readathon, what’s one thing you’ll do different today? I usually leave the house to get a cup of coffee and read somewhere else for awhile. Since we are still quarantined I will be at home the whole time. We'll see how that goes.


PAST READATHON POSTS:
April and October 2011 / April and October 2012 / April and October 2013 April 2014 / April and October 2015 /April and October 2016  /  April and October 2017 / April and October 2018April and October 2019.


Photos by me.

2019 End of the Year Book Survey

Thursday, December 19, 2019

Such a weird reading year. For the first time, I took part in a committee which selects a new play to win a big grant. That added about 30 new plays to my regular reading list. Plus, I had a baby in April, which had a big impact on my choice of books. I read a lot fewer classics and a lot more YA, "chick lit", and mysteries. I also tried to binge through more new releases than normal because of the publisher rules with libraries that might be changing and restricting use of ebooks soon. 

All that being said, it was a good reading year. I made a goal to read more from my shelves (at least 30 books) and to quit reading books that weren't working for me. I did both! I also FINALLY completed the last two Shakespeare plays I hadn't read. Now I just need to see more of them performed live. 
  
Any books I reread this year are not eligible for this list. I also didn’t count the piles upon piles of children’s books I read, except to list a couple new favorites. I also don’t limit myself to one book per answer if there are two or three that are a perfect fit.

Number of Books You Read: 187
Number of Re-Reads: 13
Genre You Read The Most From: Literary fiction and mysteries
1. Best Books You Read In 2019?
Classics — North and South
Historical Fiction — Daisy Jones and the Six and Where the Crawdads Sing
Mystery — The ABC Murders and The Inspector Gamache series 
Literary Fiction — Once Upon a River, The Dutch House, and The River
Nonfiction — Educated, I'd Rather Be Reading, Just Mercy, From Scratch, Becoming, Garlic and Sapphires, and Being Mortal 
Fantasy — The Starless Sea 
Play — Pericles, Witch, and Cambodian Rock Band 
YA — Amy & Roger's Epic Detour, The Royal We, The Sun is Also a Star 
Science Fiction — Recursion and The Testaments
Children’s — The Little House on the Prairie series, The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore 
Graphic Novel — Kid Gloves, Here and March

2. Book You Were Excited About & Thought You Were Going To Love More But Didn’t?
Here and Now and Then and A Court of Thorns and Roses, Chances Are...

3. Most surprising (in a good way) book you read?
Amy & Roger's Epic Detour  

4. Book You “Pushed” The Most People To Read (And They Did)?
From Scratch and The River 

5. Best series you started in 2019?
Little House on the Prairie and the Inspector Gamache series

6. Favorite new author you discovered in 2019?
Peter Heller and Ruth Reichl, I read two books from each author this year and loved them all! 

7. Best book from a genre you don’t typically read/was out of your comfort zone?
The Royal We 

8. Most action-packed/thrilling/unputdownable book of the year?
Recursion, The River, and The Turn of the Key

9. Book You Are Most Likely To Re-Read Next Year?
The Starless Sea, without a doubt!
10. Favorite cover of a book you read in 2019?
The Lager Queen of Minnesota, The Immortalists, Time After Time, and The Dutch House

11. Most memorable character of 2019?
- Inspector Gamache 
- Maeve from The Dutch House
- Kaz from Six of Crows
- Kya from Where the Crawdads Sing 
- Sunja from Pachinko

12. Most beautifully written book read in 2019? 
The Starless Sea

13. Most Thought-Provoking/ Life-Changing Book of 2019? 
Being Mortal

14. Book you can’t believe you waited UNTIL 2019 to finally read?
The Earthsea books by Ursula LeGuin 

15. Favorite Passage/Quote From A Book You Read In 2019?
“The day had stretched her thin, to the point where she felt the boundary of herself dissolving into the atmosphere.” – Once Upon a River

“The last time always seems sad, but it isn’t really. The end of one thing is only the beginning of another.” – These Happy Golden Years

“Married love is in the details — The purloined plums, the casual kiss on the way out the door, the midday phone call just to say hi, the arm wrapped around your shoulders through a winter’s night. It’s not exactly happily ever after, but it’s the only place I know to find fireflies in March.” – Pitching My Tent

“Humility is a most excellent barometer,” he said, “and ought to be looked for in all those we are made to look up to.” – The Golden Tresses of the Dead

“Each of us is more than the worst thing we’ve ever done.” – Just Mercy

“Singing a new song is like making the audience eat their spinach.” - A Dream About Lightning Bugs

16.Shortest & Longest Book You Read In 2019?
- Short Stories from Hogwarts of Power, Politics & Pesky Poltergeist: 64 pgs
The Unexpected Everything: 560 pgs

17. Book That Shocked You The Most?
The Lost Man (the ending) and Just Mercy (our broken legal system) 

18. Favorite Couple?
- Leon and Tiffy in The Flatshare 
- Inspector Gamache and his wife
- Celine and her husband in Celine 

19. Favorite Non-Romantic Relationship of The Year?
- Meredith and her step-grandpa in The Honey Bus
Holling and his teacher in The Wednesday Wars

20. Favorite Book You Read in 2019 From an Author You’ve Read Previously?
Once Upon a River and The Lager Queen of Minnesota 

21. Best Book You Read In 2019 That You Read Based SOLELY On A
Recommendation From Somebody Else?
The Unhoneymooners

22. Newest fictional crush from a book you read in 2019?
Sam from One True Loves

23. Best 2019 debut you read?
The Silent Patient 

24. Best Worldbuilding/Most Vivid Setting You Read This Year?
The Starless Sea 

25. Book That Put A Smile On Your Face/Was The Most FUN To Read?
#IMomSoHard 

26. Book That Made You Cry in 2019?
Lift, a letter from a mother to her two daughters... can you blame me?

27. Hidden Gem Of The Year?
The Honey Bus and Dear Mrs. Bird 

28. Book That Crushed Your Soul?
The Big Burn, two pieces of that book really got to me. First, that Teddy Roosevelt's mother and wife died within a few hours of each other. Second, that Pulaski, a man who worked for the forest service and saved many during a forest fire, was treated horribly by the government and left destitute and dying.  

29. Most Unique Book You Read In 2019?
My Lady Jane 

30. Book That Made You the Maddest?
One Day in December and Normal People 

31. Best Audiobook?
Daisy Jones and The Six

32. Best Book to Film Adaptation?
The Sun is Also a Star and Little Women

Thanks to Perpetual Page Turner for once again hosting this survey! It’s always so much fun to look at everything I read throughout the year and think about what I loved/hated. 


Photo by me.

Little Free Library

Thursday, December 12, 2019

For my birthday this year my best friend and husband surprised me with my very own Little Free Library. I was over the moon! I’ve always loved them and I was so excited to be able to share books with our community in this way. 

It was such an incredible gift and one that will continue to bless others with books for years to come! 


My library and my kiddos and best friend's kids. 
He took the very first book (The Giver)!

After ton of phone calls and even a parks meeting where I was asked to bring the actual little library, I finally got approval to install it in a local park. My husband dug a post hole and together we set it up. My best friend and her kiddos were there, along with my two kids, to commemorate the occasion.
I filled the library with some of my favorite books. I wanted a mix of classics, YA, children's books, nonfiction, and literary fiction. In the month since we installed it I've already restocked it and it seems popular despite the cold! I love the location, right near the town hall and the water on a well-used walking path. 
My best friend wrapped the present in paper and covered the paper with beautiful quotes about reading (above left). It was just perfect. My husband engraved a brass plaque for the library dedicating it to my mom. She passed away from Leukemia when I was a teenager, but throughout her life, she never tired of reading.