Usually at the end of the year, I blog about my reading life. Last year, my friend John challenged me to read 50 books during 2013, and I accepted his challenge. Now, normally, I'm not a goal setter, and when I do set New Years resolutions, it's rare that I see them through. For some reason, this challenge stuck. Probably in part because it had a social aspect, but also because I felt it was doable. I was staying more or less on track until September.
What happened in September, you may be thinking? Well, I had to create a binder documenting all my work for the last 8-9 years in order to apply to become a full professor. Basically, that binder took over my life (and my home!) for both September and October--I had piles of papers everywhere and spent a lot of time writing about how wonderful I am. 😉 My reading took a back seat, and I only managed to complete one book during each of those months.
Once I handed the binder in, I tried to catch up. I thought I was going to be forced to count picture books on my reading list . . . but I went on a reading frenzy during December and completed 10 books! I ended up reading 52 "real" books in 2013. I did choose which books to read by length and, now that I've completed that goal, my new goal is . . . to NEVER set a reading goal again. I'm excited to read longer and more complex books this coming year.
Here's a list of my ten favorite books from my 2013 reading list (in the order that I read them).
- Deborah Heiligman, Charles and Emma: The Darwins’ Leap of Faith.
- Matt De La Pena, Mexican White Boy.
- John Green, The Fault in Our Stars.
- Meg Wolitzer, The Interestings.
- Margaret Atwood, MaddAddam.
- Sherman Alexie, Reservation Blues.
- Tom Perotta, The Abstinence Teacher.
- Rainbow Rowell, Eleanor and Park.
- Matthew Quick, The Silver Linings Playbook.
- Elizabeth Strout, Amy and Isabelle.
You'll notice a lot of Young Adult literature on this list--I taught a YA lit class last spring, but it also helped me keep up on my reading since they are usually easier to read. Like I said, I'm eager to read more complex books in the coming year.