I realize looking at this list that it may not appear that I slowed down this month. But you’ll notice that most of the books I read were children’s novels. I read one adult novel, one adult collection of poetry, and one Shakespearean play. The rest were kid’s books. I’m kind of a kid at heart, so it was a fun month.
I am the middle of a few challenging books. I anticipate June being a bit more dense in terms of “finished works,” although I intend to keep reading slowly.
Fiction and Nonfiction Reviews
In May, I reviewed a few books I finished in April:
- The Discoverers by Daniel Boorstin
- Utopia by Thomas More
- Daughter of Destiny by Benazir Bhutto
- Green Knowe Chronicles by L.M. Boston (children’s fiction)
I also finished reading the following books:
- Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte (500 pages; fiction).
- Green Knowe Chronicles (children’s fiction)
- A Stranger at Green Knowe by L.M. Boston (about 4 hours audio, equal to 205 pages). audiobook
- An Enemy at Green Knowe by L.M. Boston (about 4 hours audio, equal to 190 pages; children’s fiction). audiobook
- The Stones at Green Knowe by L.M. Boston (4 hours audio, equal to 140 pages; children’s fiction). audiobook
- Harry Potter series (rereads/no reviews)
- Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by J.K. Rowling (310 pages; children’s fiction)
- Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets by J.K. Rowling (350 pages; children’s fiction)
- Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban by J.K. Rowling (435 pages; children’s fiction)
- Poetry for Young People: William Shakespeare (50 pages; children’s poetry collection)
- Sailing Alone Around the Room by Billy Collins (170 pages; poetry).
- The Midwife’s Apprentice by Karen Cushman (about 3 hours audio, equal to 125 pages; children’s fiction)
- Julius Caesar by William Shakespeare (100 pages, plus about 200 pages of commentary, plus 2 hours audiobook; drama).
- Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle Treasury by Betty MacDonald (children’s fiction)
- Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle by Betty MacDonald (120 pages)
- Hello, Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle by Betty MacDonald (125 pages)
- Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle’s Magic by Betty MacDonald (110 read of 125 pages)
I reviewed some picture books by Margaret Wise Brown. They were:
- The Runaway Bunny by Margaret Wise Brown, illustrated by Clement Hurd
- My World by Margaret Wise Brown, illustrated by Clement Hurd
- Big Red Barn by Margaret Wise Brown, illustrated by Felicia Bond
- The Little Island by Margaret Wise Brown, illustrated by Leonard Weisgard
- The Golden Egg Book by Margaret Wise Brown, illustrated by Leonard Weisgard
- The Quiet Noisy Book by Margaret Wise Brown, illustrated by Leonard Weisgard
- The Little Fur Family by Margaret Wise Brown, illustrated by Garth Williams
- The Color Kittens by Margaret Wise Brown, illustrated by Alice and Martin Provensen
- A Child’s Goodnight Book by Margaret Wise Brown, illustrated by Jean Charlot
Since I’m reading slower, I’m reviewing less. I started posting weekly “reading updates” each week so I can keep updated on Rebecca Reads. So far, I’m enjoying that: there’s something fun about talking about books!
- April in Review (in which I share April’s reading)
- Blog Miscellany (in which I share info about Nobel Prize games on the web, the Bookworms Carnival, and a new challenge)
- Book Blog Guild (in which I mention the new Book Blog Guild)
- Reading with Kids, Defined (in which I ponder reading with my son)
- My First Year of Blogging: A Contest with a Giveaway
- Abandoned Book: Brave New World by Aldous Huxley
- Reading Journal (May 20): Rebecca Reads a Little Slower (in which I ponder slowing down)
- Reading Journal (May 27): Distraction (in which I ponder being distracted by Harry Potter)
I’m joining the Beowulf on the Beach Challenge, which goes through Labor Day (September 7). For this challenge, I must read just one book from the list of classics. My goal at this point is to read The Aeneid, although I’d love to reread Beloved as well. I want to finish The Aeneid by the end of my own Really Old Classics challenge, which ends July 31, but if I don’t finish it by then, I’ll finish it by September. I’ve also begun The Arabian Nights for the Really Old Classics Challenge, so I’m probably going to finish that (or at least make good progress) before I start The Aeneid.
I still intend to continue my personal How to Read and Why challenge, although I haven’t read anything for that for a while now. I love not having a deadline of any kind for myself! I’ve finished the short story portion, and I feel the need to read some books on “how to read poetry” before I start the poetry portion of the project; as I’m reading a few other nonfiction books first, it may be another month before I begin. I feel that reading the classics (like The Aeneid) will take priority in the next few months.
Here are my current challenges. I mention books I’m currently reading for each challenge in parenthesis.
- Martel-Harper Challenge (until 30 June 2009). 1/2
- Once Upon a Time III Challenge: The Journey (until 30 June 2009). 3/1 (The Arabian Nights)
- Really Old Classics Challenge (until 31 July 2009). 4/5 (The Arabian Nights)
- Beowulf on the Beach Challenge (until 7 Sep 2009). 0/1
- 9 for 09 challenge (until 27 Dec 2009). 3/9
- BiblioShakespeare Challenge (until 31 Dec 2009). 3/6
- Dewey’s Books Challenge (until 31 Dec 2009). 4/5 (1984)
- Dewey Decimal Reading Challenge (until 31 Dec 2009). 5/10 (The Clash of Civilizations)
- Science Book Challenge (until 31 Dec 2009). 0/3
- World Citizen Challenge (until 31 Dec 2009). 3/7 (The Clash of Civilizations)
- HTR&W project: poetry. 0/21 poems
- Nobel Challenge. 12/101 authors (Galsworthy’s Forsyte Saga)
- Pulitzer Challenge. 10/82
- Newbery Medal. 28/88
- Caldecott Medal. 36/72
- My Children’s Literature Project. 6/15 chapters
- 101 Great Books Recommended for College-Bound Readers. 42/101 (Uncle Tom’s Cabin)
- U.S. Presidential Reading. 2/44 presidents
- Presidents of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. 1/15 presidents
- My Short Story Author Project.
- My Poets Project.
- Favorite Authors to Read.
To finish all my time limited challenges, I’d have to keep reading like I did last month. That’s not going to happen, so I accept the fact that some challenges aren’t going to be completed. I’m enjoying taking things slower.