2015 Reading Goals

Yep, I know that it is well into February. Still, it’s only the second day of the Hub Reading Challenge, so it seems like as good a time as any to share my reading goals for this year.

The first one is to complete the Hub challenge, which I didn’t do last year even when I was blogging for the Hub. This year seems like a good time to try to get some extra YA reading in, and I successfully finished the Nonfiction Challenge (which took place before the Youth Media Awards last week), so I only have to read or listen to 20 additional books to meet the challenge. Looking over the list of eligible books, I know that I want to include at least 2 or 3 audiobooks and 3 of the Alex award (adult books that appeal to teens) winners (especially since one of them is already on my nightstand, as you’ll see below).  I’ve got some others in mind, but I’m looking forward to reading a fairly broad selection between now and June.

My other chosen reads for the year are here:       IMG_2273

The are arranged into roughly three categories:

Books I’ve Had Sitting Around that I Want to Finally Read (or finish):

  1. Les yeux jaunes des crocodiles by Katherine Pancol (with English translation by it to check phrases I just don’t get). I’ve just discovered that this one has a movie adaptation (also in French), so that gives me added incentive to finish it.
  2. Becoming Human by Jean Vanier. One I’ve thought I should read for awhile and just haven’t.
  3. Secret Keeper by Mitali Perkins. YA fiction that I just haven’t gotten to, and also one that gives me a chance to read a non-white perspective.
  4. The Dirty Life by Kristen Kimball. An interesting memoir by a farmer who doesn’t start working in agriculture until her marriage–I bought this last year to read because it looked interesting, so I need to sit down and read it.
  5. Lying: An Augustinian Theology of Duplicity by Paul Griffiths. My “theology read” for the year–I started it at some point last year, and it was surprisingly easy to read, and it interests me.
  6. Wish You Were Here by Elizabeth Hudson. This is a collection of essays by the editor of Our State, which is the NC state magazine. I’ve been reading them in stolen moments, and I think they will be easy to finish in the same way.
  7. Incarnadine by Mary Szybist. Another purchase from last year, this one is poetry. I’ve liked some of the ones I’ve read, but I find this harder than some poetry books to read in snatches of time. I need to just sit down and finish the whole thing.

New Books or Books Recommended to Me:

  1. In this Mountain by Jan Karon. I’ve had several friends recommend the Jan Karon books to me over the years (I’m sure there’s no connection to my husband studying to be, and then becoming a pastor), and since a relative lent me this one, I figure I should go ahead and give them a try.
  2. All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr. This is the one that’s on the Alex award list, and it was also one that a good friend, English teacher, and librarian said was the best book she read last year. I got it for my mom at Christmas, who nicely finished it quickly so I could borrow it back. All’s fair in book acquisition.
  3. Olive Kittridge by Elizabeth Strout. Recommended by a friend at a library booksale last year. Who am I to say no?
  4. Egg and Spoon by Gregory Maguire. This is one I bought new this year. I’ve never read Wicked or any of his other works, but the ideas behind them interest me. Egg and Spoon is a retelling of Baba Yaga stories, which I don’t know real well, received several good reviews, and fits in with my wintertime interest in reading stories related to Russia.
  5. 100 Essays I Don’t Have Time to Write by Sarah Ruhl. Not knowing anything about today’s theater world, I did not know that Sarah Ruhl was a famous playwright until I read some reviews of this book. But I’ve already started it, and it’s fabulous.
  6. The Hip Girl’s Guide to Homemaking by Kate Payne. A Christmas gift that has so far been both fun and useful.

Kindle Books That Have Just Been Sitting There:

There are a bunch of these, but I decided to limit the list to five:

  1. The Amazing Thing About the Way It Goes by Stephanie Pearl-McPhee. This is the one book I knew I would buy with Christmas gift cards before Christmas. The Yarn Harlot writes about more than yarn. It’s hilarious so far, as expected.
  2. The False Prince by Jennifer A. Nielson. I’ve had several false starts of this one. It seems like it’s good (and I’ve heard rave reviews), but I keep getting pulled away to other things. No more!
  3. Wild Swans: Three Daughters of China. Recommended by friends living in China.
  4. Little Bee by Chris Cleave. I added this to my “to read” list years back, never picked it up, bought it at a great Kindle sale, and still have never picked it up. Now I want to pick it up.
  5. Oriented to Faith: Transforming the Conflict Over Gay Relationships. I’ve gotten pretty far in this one, and I like it a lot, and I just need to finish it.

Finally, there’s Harry Potter #5 on there. I am still working on rereading that series, and I have also been rereading (or re-listening to) several of the Vorkosigan series by Lois McMaster Bujold, and I’m sure I’ll still reread a bunch of books over the course of the year.

Still, I think this list will keep me busy but is doable if I give it enough attention. It’s always exciting to have a reading project ahead!


Update 2/17/15: I forgot one book on my Kindle list: Station Eleven, by Emily St. John Mandel, which I have an e-arc of to read. I’ve received several recommendations and definitely want to get to this one!

Something to tide you over…

Ok, I doubt anyone is just checking this blog everyday just to see the next post, but I do feel bad about not having posted in a good week and a half. I will try to get some more posts up in the next few days.

In the meantime, this posted on YALSA’s The Hub today (and was a large part of why no other blogging got done in the last week):


It was a fun chance to combine two interests in one project. While you’re there, you can check out the many other Hub posts, including a reading challenge for finalists of the William C. Morris Debut Award (for a first time YA author) and the Excellence in Young Adult Nonfiction Award. The ALA Youth Media award winners (including those from YALSA and ALSC–the latter include the famous Newbery and Caldecott awards)  for this year get announced on January 27, so stay tuned!