Now, I know this isn’t a family blog or a mommy blog. I try to keep my personal life out of it to some extent and instead focus on the books I have been reading. But I’m very excited, so I have to share: My son has sat on the toilet three times successfully already today, he’s wearing his first pair of underwear, he’s been dry for three hours (since we put it on), and I’m thinking he really is more ready for toilet training than I’ve been thinking! I really wasn’t going to start today (I was thinking “March”), but he’s acting all excited about the underwear, so here we are. Maybe the fact that he’s been toilet training his doll for the last few weeks should have been a sign. (I kid you not: the doll is very good at using the toilet.) Of course, I’m expecting there will be many accidents, but this sure is a good start, I think.
Beyond that, I’ve been busy the last few days, so I haven’t read a lot. Last week, I finished my reread of Cather’s Archbishop for prep for my book club. I reread Herland for Women Unbound and I have so much to say I just have to find time to write a proper post of that slim little volume with lots of issues in it. And although it wasn’t a favorite, Sunday afternoon I really enjoyed reading Toni Morrison’s Jazz, given the setting is one I’ve been learning about (the Harlem Renaissance).
In terms of the Classics Circuit, the schedule for the February Harlem Renaissance Tour has been posted (I cannot express how excited I am about this!) and sign up is open for the Georgette Heyer March tour.
Beyond that, my son and I have read 75 books together already (since December 12, 2009). This was the easy portion of my 1000 Books Project because it’s the books he already owns. Now it’s going to be harder as I find new books from the library every week that he wants to read. I look forward to sharing some of those favorites with you!
In the coming week, I want to finish my read of Sir Gawain. It really is a one-sitting read, so the fact that I have only read 60 pages should tell you I just started too late at night and fell asleep. I am enjoying it very much! I also started The Housekeeper and the Professor, which will be fast. Other than that, there are a number of books due at the library in the next week that I can’t renew, so I don’t know which to read first, next, and last. I may just have to pay overdue fines. At 5 cents a day, I think it would be okay in the long run.
- Death Comes for the Archbishop by Willa Cather (300 pages; fiction). A reread.
- Herland by Charlotte Perkins Gilman (124 pages; fiction).
- Jazz by Toni Morrison. (230 pages; fiction).
- The collected poems of Langston Hughes. I’ve read some of Hughes’ poetry. I enjoy it! I’m just not going to read this complete volume.
Each week, I list my progress so I can see how my reading compares week to week. I did make a little progress on some of these.
Here are the books I own or downloaded. I’ve been rather horrible at reading my project book this week! I still have eleven days in the month to finish it, though, so it’s okay.
- Our Latter-day Hymns: The Stories and Their Messages by Karen Lynn Davidson (100 read of 455 pages; nonfiction).
- History of the English-Speaking People by Winston Churchill, abridged by Henry Steele Commager (240 read of 415; nonfiction). My Project Book.
Old Library Loot
- Sir Gawain and the Green Knight: A New Verse Translation trans. Simon Armitage (60 read of 200, but half of that is the original Middle English; fiction/really old classic). For the Really Old Classics Challenge.
- Golden Slippers, an anthology of Negro poetry for young readers. Next up for poetry, a collection of Harlem Renaissance poetry.
- The housekeeper and the professor by Yoko Ogawa (40 read of 190 pages; fiction). For the Japanese Literature Challenge 3 and the Japanese Literature Book Group.
- To the Lighthouse by Virginia Woolf. For Woolf in Winter.
- Moses, man of the mountain by Zora Neale Hurston.
- Black no more : a novel by George S. Schuyler. For the February Classics Circuit.
- Inventing English : a portable history of the language by Seth Lerer.
- The picture of Dorian Gray (Norton Critical Edition) by Oscar Wilde. For my book club.
New Library Loot
- Oscar Wilde’s The picture of Dorian Gray: a graphic novel by Ian Culbard. Since I’m reading the original for my book club.
- A visit to William Blake’s inn : poems for innocent and experienced travelers by Nancy Willard. A Newbery and Caldecott winner.
- East of Eden by John Steinbeck. For the Classics Reads Book Group. I haven’t started, so I’ll be a bit behind the others.
- Kings : an account of books 1 and 2 of Homer’s Iliad; The husbands : an account of books 3 and 4; All day permanent red : the first battle scenes of Homer’s Iliad; and War music : an account of books 16 to 19 of Homer’s Iliad by Christopher Logue. These are each short (80-100 pages). For the retelling portion of the Really Old Classics Challenge.
- Sense and Sensibility by Jane Austen. My Valentine’s Day read; I’ve never read it.
- All Creatures Great and Small by James Herriot. For an in-real-life book club. Since I’m dreading reading this, I probably won’t go this month.
- The Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster. Aarti mentioned this. I remember loving the movie as a kid. Sounds like the book has lots of fun word play.
- Reading in Bed: Personal Essays on the Glories of Reading edited by Steven Gilbar. Mentioned by Stefanie.
- Half-Broke Horses by Jeanette Walls. Heather J. enjoyed this, although it wasn’t as good as The Glass Castle.
- The Sorrows of Young Werther by Goethe. Eva says this makes her excited to read more 18th century lit. Since I’m fairly remiss on 18th century lit myself, maybe I should find it.
- Mad, Bad and Sad: A History of Women and the Mind Doctors from 1800 to the Present by Lisa Appignanesi. Raych at Books I Done Read has some good things to say about this.