Tag Archives: 20booksofsummer

20 Books of Summer – Month 1 Update

I’m taking part in the 20 Books of Summer Challenge. It’s exactly what you think: try to read 20 books over June, July and August. I like this challenge because it’s jut a bit more than I normally read, and I have my long summer holiday to help!

I also find it amusing that I can not stick to the intended plan. I set out at the beginning what I think I’d like to read, then it goes off track quite quickly.

So how am I doing after month 1? I finished 6 books plus read a third of The Iliad, so that’s perfectly on track. Two of the books were quite short, but that’s ok.

Here’s the original list, ones I’ve read in red, links to reviews at the end. Books not on the original list are just tagged onto the end.

  1. Homegoing – Yaa Gyasi (review)
  2. Still Me – Jojo Moyes
  3. Conclave – Robert Harris
  4. Sarah – J.T. Leroy
  5. Romantic Outlaws: The Extraordinary Lives of Mary Wollstonecraft and Mary Shelley – Charlotte Gordon
  6. Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine – Gail Honeyman
  7. How Do You Like Me Now? – Holly Bourne
  8. The Pisces – Melissa Broder
  9. How Not to be a Boy – Robert Webb
  10.  Things a Bright Girl Can Do – Sally Nicholls
  11. The Iliad – Homer
  12. Story – Robert McKee (review)
  13. How To Stop Time – Matt Haig (review)
  14. 2666 – Roberto Bolano
  15.  I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings – Maya Angelou
  16. The Dark Dark – Samantha Hunt
  17. Storm in a Teacup: The Physics of Everyday Life – Helen Czerski
  18. The Dark Road to Mercy – Wiley Cash
  19. My Brilliant Friend – Elena Ferrante
  20. The Mother of All Questions – Rebecca Solnit
  21. Everyday Sexism – Laura Bates (review)
  22. A Room of One’s Own – Virginia Woolf (review)
  23. Little Black Book – Otegha Uwagba (review)

I realise I’m writing this halfway through July, and so really I’ve already read 3 more books! Shhhhh those will be in the next update!

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20 Books of Summer Challenge 2018

I’m going to take part in the 20 books of summer challenge again this year. The aim is to try and read 20 books in June, July and August. It’s slightly more than I normally read, but I do have a summer holiday to fill with exciting books. The challenge was created by Cathy at 746 Books. You can find other people taking part in the challenge at that link too.

I also enjoy this challenge for the slightly ridiculous reason that I enjoy seeing just how badly I can predict what I will read. I like planning out what to read, and than really find I can’t stick to it. Maybe this year will be different! Here is a link to the results of last years challenge. I did alright considering I had a rough Summer personally, and read 19 books.

This year for 20 Books of Summer I will Read:

  1. Homegoing – Yaa Gyasi. Just started it and it’s for book club.
  2. Still Me – Jojo Moyes. Another one for book club. See my review of After You to see how highly anticipated this is.
  3. Conclave – Robert Harris. Book club again. I’m only in two book clubs, I swear.
  4. Sarah – J.T. Leroy. A friend recommended this so I will read it soon, so I can judge him.
  5. Romantic Outlaws: The Extraordinary Lives of Mary Wollstonecraft and Mary Shelley – Charlotte Gordon. A friend lent me this ages ago, and I have loved what I’ve read so far. I just think it’s size has intimidated me. It’s quite a beast.
  6. Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine – Gail Honeyman. I’ve got a copy. I just haven’t got round to it yet, but it sounds ace and I really want to get to it!
  7. How Do You Like Me Now? – Holly Bourne. As above!
  8. The Pisces – Melissa Broder. This book sounds amazing. “The Pisces is about a heartbroken PhD student who over one summer falls in dangerous, ecstatic love with a merman” Erm… yes!
  9. How Not to be a Boy – Robert Webb. Have heard lots of good things about this one, and I couldn’t go three months without reading something about gender.
  10.  Things a Bright Girl Can Do – Sally Nicholls. I’ve read half already and I need to finish it!

 

I’m quite confident I’ll get through those, now the second half of the list is purely speculative fiction:

11. The Iliad – Homer. hahahahahahahahahahahahahhahahahahahaha. Yes, this summer I will read The Iliad.

12. Story – Robert McKee. Fairly confident I will read this because I was lent this by a friend who I’m seeing in a couple of weeks, so I need to read it and give it back!

13. How To Stop Time – Matt Haig. Again, I have a copy waiting to be read.

14. 2666 – Roberto Bolano. Yes, this is the summer I will read this gigantic book.

15. I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings – Maya Angelou. A classic I feel I should have read already.

16. The Dark Dark – Samantha Hunt. Short stories that sound a-fricken-mazing.

17. Storm in a Teacup: The Physics of Everyday Life – Helen Czerski. I’ve not been reading enough science books and so I need to add at least one to this list. I love the premise of this one.

18. The Dark Road to Mercy – Wiley Cash. Recommended by my favourite book recommending friend! So it’s bound to be good.

19. My Brilliant Friend – Elena Ferrante. I feel so out of touch having not read this yet!

20. The Mother of All Questions – Rebecca Solnit. Got to get some Solnit on this list. I’m savouring her books, but I’m also in danger of just never reading them!

20bookssummer

here are 15 of the books – 5 are on my kindle

I’m going to enjoy seeing how accurate this ends up!

**update** Since writing this blog post, I decided I actually am going to read the Iliad this summer. I only need to read six pages a day and that is very achievable. So welcome to my SUMMER CHALLENGE SIDE PROJECT: read the Iliad at last.

iliad

6 pages a day will do it. 

 

Summer Book Challenge wrap up! #20booksofsummer

How did I do?

I struggled to get through my books in August, but almost managed it – getting up to nineteen books altogether. I was totally on track, but I had a close family bereavement at the end of July and this has been very difficult to deal with. So I’m really very happy with how I got on overall. I thought about squeezing in a really short book on the last day, but I just didn’t have the energy. I’m also a few books behind with my reviews, but I’m sure I’ll get back on track soon.

Throughout this challenge I’ve definitely had it reinforced to me that I can not plan what I will read very far in advance! There is just no point. I need to read what I feel like reading at the time.

Here’s my list of twenty books I originally planned to read, with the books I actually read in red. Any that were in addition to the original list of 20 are added beyond book twenty. So I ended up reading twelve that weren’t on my original list, and only seven I planned to back in May.

  1. The Essex Serpent – Sarah Perry (review)
  2. Everything I Never Told You – Celeste Ng (review)
  3. Reservoir 13 – Jon McGregor (review)
  4. the Invisible Man – Ralph Ellison
  5. Hope in the Dark – Rebecca Solnit
  6. Men Explain Things to Me – Rebecca Solnit (review)
  7. Nobody Told Me – Holly McNish
  8. Dear Fatty – Dawn French
  9. Oryx and Crake – Margaret Atwood
  10. The Power – Naomi Alderman (review)
  11. The Lottery (and other stories) – Shirley Jackson
  12. Half of a Yellow Sun – Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
  13. The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks – Rebecca Skloot
  14. The Jungle – Upton Sinclair
  15. A Quiet Storm – Rachel Howzell Hall
  16. How to Build a Girl – Caitlin Moran
  17. The Road – Cormac McCarthy
  18. The Girl of Ink and Stars – Kiran Millwood Hargrave (review)
  19. Wonder – RJ Palacio
  20. The Color Purple – Alice Walker
  21. Queen of Spades – Michael Shou-Yung Shum
  22. Living the Dream – Lauren Berry (review)
  23. Inferior – Angela Saini (review)
  24. Holidays On Ice – David Sedaris (review)
  25. The Unseen – Roy Jacobsen (review)
  26. Nasty Women – 404Ink (review)
  27. All Grown Up – Jami Attenberg (review)
  28. Anger Is An Energy – John Lydon (review)
  29. The Seed Collectors – Scarlett Thomas (review)
  30. How Hard Can Love Be? – Holly Bourne (review)
  31. Lincoln In The Bardo – George Saunders (review)
  32. The Beautiful Bureaucrat – Helen Philips

I’ve really enjoyed this challenge. It’s motivated me to get through a few more books than I otherwise might have. I’m sure I’ll do something similar next year!

20 Books of Summer – 2 months in update #20booksofsummer

I’m now up to fourteen books read – eight read in July. Helped by being on holiday for the last few weeks while my kids were still at school! As you can see, the idea that I can plan my reading in advance is a total nonsense. I have only read six from the original list of twenty books I made, and three of those were book club reads that I *had* to read.

Six have been netgalley reads after I went a bit crazy requesting books and then realised they were going to have to dominate my reading to get through them! I’m nearly through them and have now done the exact same thing with requesting Man Booker Prize longlist titles…

Two have been audio books. This has been great on my commute to work (40 mins each way). Not so much since I’ve been on my summer holidays.

And one was over 500 pages!

I have one month left on this challenge and I think I should be ok to get though 6 more books and reach my target!

  1. The Essex Serpent – Sarah Perry (review)
  2. Everything I Never Told You – Celeste Ng (review)
  3. Reservoir 13 – Jon McGregor (review)
  4. the Invisible Man – Ralph Ellison
  5. Hope in the Dark – Rebecca Solnit
  6. Men Explain Things to Me – Rebecca Solnit (review)
  7. Nobody Told Me – Holly McNish
  8. Dear Fatty – Dawn French
  9. Oryx and Crake – Margaret Atwood
  10. The Power – Naomi Alderman (review)
  11. The Lottery (and other stories) – Shirley Jackson
  12. Half of a Yellow Sun – Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
  13. The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks – Rebecca Skloot
  14. The Jungle – Upton Sinclair
  15. A Quiet Storm – Rachel Howzell Hall
  16. How to Build a Girl – Caitlin Moran
  17. The Road – Cormac McCarthy
  18. The Girl of Ink and Stars – Kiran Millwood Hargrave (review)
  19. Wonder – RJ Palacio
  20. The Color Purple – Alice Walker
  21. Queen of Spades – Michael Shou-Yung Shum
  22. Living the Dream – Lauren Berry (review)
  23. Inferior – Angela Saini (review)
  24. Holidays On Ice – David Sedaris (review)
  25. The Unseen – Roy Jacobsen (review)
  26. Nasty Women – 404Ink (review)
  27. All Grown Up – Jami Attenberg (review)
  28. Anger Is An Energy – John Lydon (review)

20 books of summer – 1 month in update

I joined the 20 books of Summer Challenge and wrote a list of 20 books I would try and read. They are the first 20 books on this list. I already know I’m no good at planning my reading to this degree, but didn’t think I’d go off plan so quickly! 3 books out of 6 I read this month were off list! I’m clearly a mood reader or something.

Books read in red. Links to reviews if they exist. I’ve started Everything I Never Told You as well, and I’m nearly finished with Reservoir 13 on an audio book free trial because I didn’t want to spend £9 on the kindle version or the hardback (it’s for my book club so I needed to read it before the end of this week). Audible it is. It’s taking a bit of getting used to but I might continue to listen to the odd audio book on my commute. I think some comedy would work well and I have a few books lined up to try on this free trial.

I’m keeping good pace especially considering I have summer holidays soon… so catch up will be easy. I also have a few short books ready to go if I need them.

I absolutely loved The Power. I’m recommending it to everyone who’ll listen! and Inferior is a great book about women and science and where the science has often been wrong, wrong, wrong!

  1. The Essex Serpent – Sarah Perry (review)
  2. Everything I Never Told You – Celeste Ng
  3. Reservoir 13 – Jon McGregor
  4. the Invisible Man – Ralph Ellison
  5. Hope in the Dark – Rebecca Solnit
  6. Men Explain Things to Me – Rebecca Solnit (review)
  7. Nobody Told Me – Holly McNish
  8. Dear Fatty – Dawn French
  9. Oryx and Crake – Margaret Atwood
  10. The Power – Naomi Alderman (review)
  11. The Lottery (and other stories) – Shirley Jackson
  12. Half of a Yellow Sun – Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
  13. The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks – Rebecca Skloot
  14. The Jungle – Upton Sinclair
  15. A Quiet Storm – Rachel Howzell Hall
  16. How to Build a Girl – Caitlin Moran
  17. The Road – Cormac McCarthy
  18. The Girl of Ink and Stars – Kiran Millwood Hargrave
  19. Wonder – RJ Palacio
  20. The Color Purple – Alice Walker
  21. Queen of Spades – Michael Shou-Yung Shum
  22. Living the Dream – Lauren Berry (review)
  23. Inferior – Angela Saini (review)

How’s your summer reading going?

20 Books of Summer Reading Challenge #20booksofsummer

I’m not very good with planning my reading ahead of when I actually pick up a book and get started with it, so it’s with some trepidation that I’m putting together a list for the 20 books of summer challenge (I found out about it over at 746books).

I already know I’ll read at least 4 books for book club – I know what 3 of them will be at the moment, so need to leave a spare place… but I haven’t… I also have a few books I’m already part way into that I will definitely finish over the next few months. I will add a couple of classics, and a few trashier ones. I have to add some books from my year long challenge that isn’t quite working out as I expected – need all the help I can get with this, so making sure a few are from that challenge on this list will help! I’m also adding a few books I *really* want to read soon.

I’m lucky that I will have a 6 week holiday to help me out with this challenge! *high fives fellow teachers*

  1. The Essex Serpent – Sarah Perry
  2. Everything I Never Told You – Celeste Ng
  3. Reservoir 13 – Jon McGregor
  4. the Invisible Man – Ralph Ellison
  5. Hope in the Dark – Rebecca Solnit
  6. Men Explain Things to Me – Rebecca Solnit
  7. Nobody Told Me – Holly McNish
  8. Dear Fatty – Dawn French
  9. Oryx and Crake – Margaret Atwood
  10. The Power – Naomi Alderman
  11. The Lottery (and other stories) – Shirley Jackson
  12. Half of a Yellow Sun – Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
  13. The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks – Rebecca Skloot
  14. The Jungle – Upton Sinclair
  15. A Quiet Storm – Rachel Howzell Hall
  16. How to Build a Girl – Caitlin Moran
  17. The Road – Cormac McCarthy
  18. The Girl of Ink and Stars – Kiran Millwood Hargrave
  19. Wonder – RJ Palacio
  20. The Color Purple – Alice Walker

I’m going to reserve the right to make some swaps if I need to!

Anyone else want to join in? 😀