November Month in Review and December Reading Journal

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In an effort to be more organized on Rebecca Reads, I’ve decided I’m going to touch base once a month with a review of my reading progress and plans.

In November, I read some very heavy things, like The Iliad and Nabokov’s stories. I plan on reading lighter fiction in December, as well as some light nonfiction and some poetry. Here’s a rundown of my November reading and posts on Rebecca Reads, in case you missed it the first time around.

You’ll notice that a good number of the November reads haven’t been reviewed on this site yet because I was out of town. They should be up in the coming days!

Fiction and Nonfiction Reviews

In November, I reviewed a few things I finished reading in October:

I also read a number of things, with links where I’ve reviewed it.

  • How to Read Literature Like a Professor by Thomas C. Foster (300 pages; nonfiction/casual literary criticism)
  • Lullabies and Poems for Children (240 pages; poetry)
  • A Modest Proposal by Jonathon Swift (8 pages; nonfiction/satirical essay)
  • The Iliad by Homer, trans. Robert Fagles (650 pages; fiction/epic poetry; three-part series)
  • Short Stories by Vladimir Nabokov (62 stories, 580 pages; fiction/short stories)
  • The Planets by Dava Sobel (250 pages; nonfiction/popular science)
  • Ella Minnow Pea by Mark Dunn (200 pages; fiction)
  • The Old Man and the Sea by Ernest Hemingway (125 pages; fiction/novella)
  • Anthem by Ayn Rand (105 pages; fiction/novella)
  • A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens (110 pages; fiction/novella)
  • A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith (500 pages; fiction)

Children’s Projects

I’m working on some children’s literature projects. First, I’m reading Children’s Literature by Seth Lerer and writing a post per chapter that either integrates what I’m learning or reviews one of the books he discusses. Some more information about this project is here. This month, I considered lullabies.

Also, I’ve decided to read the Newbery Medal winners and the Caldecott Medal winners. I reviewed one Caldecott Honor winner this month (Mo Willems).

Here are the children’s books I’ve reviewed this month (in alphabetical order):

Challenge Updates

In November:

December Reading Journal

The last time I wrote about my monthly reading plans, I read something else completely. I guess I couldn’t stand staying “inside the box.” My generic plans are these:

  • I plan on reading fiction, including Charles Dicken’s Christmas novellas and Possession by A.S. Byatt (currently in progress) and Borges’ Ficciones in Spanish (a HTR&W short story author).
  • I plan on adding at least one poetry book to my reading every month, in anticipation of the poetry portion of my HTR&W project.
  • I have a number of Christmas Children’s picture books to help get you and your children in the Christmas mood.

I’ve come to peace with my librarians. I mentioned that I was frustrated with the interference in my privacy when librarians talk to me, but now I don’t mind so much when they start a conversation. I check out 10-20 children’s picture books a week, as well as request three or four books be held for me every two weeks or so, so I see them often.

One more day to enter the giveaway for a copy of The Planets!

Reviewed on December 1, 2008

About the author 

Rebecca Reid

Rebecca Reid is a homeschooling, stay-at-home mother seeking to make the journey of life-long learning fun by reading lots of good books. Rebecca Reads provides reviews of children's literature she has enjoyed with her children; nonfiction that enhances understanding of educational philosophies, history and more; and classical literature that Rebecca enjoys reading.

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  1. Yay, Christmas is coming soon! I have also been meaning to read Christmas-themed Dickens, but I never knew there were several novellas; the only one I know of is A Christmas Carol. *Must browse the library*

    Hope you’re enjoying Possession – I absolutely love that book =]

  2. That is a lot of heavy reading!  I tried to convince my IRL book club to read A Tree Grows in Brooklyn but it was a no go. Did you like Ella Minnow Pea?  I read it last year and remember how creative it was.

  3. Chain Reader, I see my plans changing already….

    Tuesday, yes there are several… I have them in their own category under Dickens on my favorite authors page. Most are pretty obscure. After I finished A Christmas Carol (review to come soon!), I started The Cricket on the Hearth, which according to Wikipedia was a better seller in Dickens’ day than the popular Carol!

    Natasha, I did like Ella Minnow Pea… and I just finished my review to go up, I think, on Thursday. I have mixed feelings about A Tree Grows in Brooklyn….haven’t written the review yet.

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