Reading Journal, October 6

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Lately, I’ve found myself starting books (particularly nonfiction), and not finishing them before picking up the next. There are so many books out there, and I am struggling to decide which one to read now, and next, and next year!

Maybe, I thought, if I write on my blog what I’m going to read this week, and don’t pick up anything else, I’ll get things read. So, anyway, here is my reading journal, and plan, for this week.


I am still in the midst of my How to Read and Why Challenge, although anyone who is following along probably thinks I’ve given up: no, I haven’t. Because the first section of How to Read and Why is short stories, I’ve been adding other short story writers as I go so I can get a good variety and overview. I was going to wrap up short stories by the end of the year, but I feel there are so many I should read to get a good “short story” overview, so I’ll see how long it takes to continue reading as many short story writers as I can. For HTR&W, I’m currently reading Flannery O’Connor‘s Complete Short Stories and I love her writing! I’ve read most of these before, but I hadn’t remembered them.

I began listening to the audio of some Edgar Allan Poe stories, in honor of Halloween (my least favorite holiday).

My husband and I will continue to read Silmarillion by J.R.R. Tolkein together, a little bit every night. It’s going to take forever at this rate, but it seems appropriate for Silmarillion. It is impossible to keep all the people and places separate anyway; when it’s been a few days since I read, I know I don’t remember everything and I enjoy the flow of the words more. I really am enjoying it, despite the fact that I have never read The Hobbit or The Lord of the Rings and I normally don’t read fantasy.

I have just joined my own Really Old Classics Challenge; I’m going to wait at least another week before I pick up The Illiad by Homer.


I have finally finished listening to the (never-ending) audiobook of Three Cups of Tea by David Oliver Relin. I’m trying to put together a balanced review, so it may be another week before I get it up. Let me just say for now that it wasn’t my cup of tea. If you haven’t read it yet, Jackets and Covers is giving away a copy; visit here before October 14.

I’m almost finished with The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron. I’m supposed to be following the program in this book for 12 weeks to help me develop my creativity. Personally, I am not loving this book (although I think it’s a good book and full of great ideas). I’m mostly skimming it at this point. I’ll post my review soon.

I’m halfway through Joseph Smith: Rough Stone Rolling by Richard Bushman, a biography that I’m really enjoying. As much as I like a great biography, I still can only read 50-100 pages a day, tops.

I started reading Children’s Literature by Seth Lerer weeks ago, and I keep returning to previous chapters and rereading portions. It’s a critical look of what children read throughout history, and why children read those things. I am really enjoying it, and I will probably continue going slowly so I can articulate, probably on Rebecca Reads, what I’m learning about children’s reading habits in the past and present.

The Discovers by Daniel Boorstin has been on my “Currently Reading” shelf for almost a year now. My husband and I were reading it together, alternating between fiction (currently Silmarillion) and nonfiction (this book). However, The Discoverers, which is a history of discovery, is apparently too boring to read at night because we tend to fall asleep. We lately have been reading fiction. Therefore, I think I’m going to officially finish reading The Discoverers by myself, as soon as I finish some of these other books.

Whew! That felt good to get that out. Now on to read!

Reviewed on October 6, 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.

  • I really admire your focus, both with this and the HTR&W challenge. I have to read so much required material for school at the moment that I don’t really mind when I can’t focus on the books I decide to read for fun — it just means my brain is worn out from whatever I was trying to focus on and I should look at something else.

    The premise of Three Cups of Tea sounds so good, I’m looking forward to hear what you didn’t enjoy about it (if that makes any sense!)

  • Kim (Sophisticated Dorkiness), I started wondering if I’m too focused: is it still fun? And reading is still fun, more or less. I just need to stop being so concerned about when I finish things; I’ll review it when I get a chance! No one is sitting around waiting for me….well except for you and my Three Cups of Tea review. It may be another week on that one.

  • Hi, my name is Katie and I am the editor of an online literary journal, One Real Story. I came across your site and wanted to invite you to become a short story review on One Real Story. Please check out the short story reviews on the site and let me know if you are interested.

  • I think reading Silmarillion together is an excellent idea. I have tried to read it and failed.Again and again.

    I have a friend who has been using The Artists Way but I’m not sure it’s something that would clique with me….

  • Katie, thanks for visiting, but I’m not interested right now. Jupiter, yes, I think reading it aloud together is perfect: it’s written like poetry and it so hard to read, but little by little it’s doable. As for the Artist’s Way, it’s an interesting book. I’m working on the review this week, so watch for it.

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