Wassup Rockers

Reading Challenges 2009.

EDIT, mid-April: I give up on this.  Yeah, I feel bad about it.  I guess that’s why they call it a challenge.  I know it’s only a quarter into a year, but it dawned on me that I don’t care about these challenges.  The reason I signed up in the first place was because I was worried I wouldn’t make time to read, but now I understand that reading is a learned behavior that I won’t stop any time soon.  I’ve been reading lots of lovely stuff!  (And some crappy stuff too, haha.)  I know I can change my reading lists and whatever but I change my mind every day (literally) and I can’t predict the changes.  It’s such a hassle.  Another reason I signed up was to interact with other readers and stuff, but I haven’t done that AT ALL.  I know this makes me a failure for not finishing something I started, but everyone should have the delight to fail the way I have–I am currently reading Chaim Potok and it reminded me how awesome he is, wish he wasn’t dead so that I could write him a letter.  I’m glad I’m still reading a lot even if I don’t have the desire to write “reviews” about the books.  I’m probably going to delete this post eventually.  Good luck to everyone else who is participating!  Rock on!

This year I dropped a shitload of money on books (one of the perils of working at a bookstore!) but haven’t gotten a chance to read many of them, so I hope to participate in a few reading challenges to make up for this. I’m trying to keep my goals low-key because I know I can get distracted pretty easily. So as the year goes I hope to post on this page about my progress.

The first is the Latin American Reading Challenge hosted by Katrina, which will run from January until the end of April. You can read the rules here. My tentative list:

(1) Las armas secretas by Julio Cortázar (Argentina)
(2) Cuentos de amor de locura y de muerte by Horacio Quiroga (Uruguay)
(3) El llano en llamas by Juan Rulfo (Mexico)
(4) Los detectives salvajes by Roberto Bolaño (Chile, Mexico)

Yes, I’m aware that in between Mexico and the Southern Cone, there are many other countries. I will not be reading about them for this challenge unless I change my plans. In my defense, how many Uruguayan fiction writers can you name? I don’t know of many. Though if you do, I’m all ears!

The second challenge is the Lost in Translation Reading Challenge from Nonsuch Book. You can read more about it here. Books I’m thinking of reading:

(1) The Fish Can Sing by Halldór Laxness (Icelandic)
(2) My Last Sigh by Luis Buñuel (Spanish)
(3) One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich by Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn (Russian)
(4) Pinocchio by Carlo Collodi (Italian)
(5) A Hero of Our Time by Mikhail Lermontov (Russian)
(6) The Proof by Agota Kristof (French)

The third is the To Be Read Challenge (Lite Version), organized by MizB. I’ve chosen option B, which gives me the flexibility of switching my reading list if it’s not working out for me. For now, these are the books I’ve chosen:

(1) The Fire Next Time by James Baldwin
(2) Lost City Radio by Daniel Alarcón
(3) Ask The Dust by John Fante
(4) Pastoralia by George Saunders
(5) Zeroville by Steve Erickson
(6) Tinta roja by Alberto Fuguet

The final challenge takes place from the beginning of February until the end of July and is called the Themed Reading Challenge. It’s hosted by Caribousmom and you can check out all the deets here. My chosen theme is music and the books I’d like to read are as follows:

(1) Black Noise by Tricia Rose
(2) Always Magic in the Air by Ken Emerson
(3) Let’s Talk About Love by Carl Wilson
(4) The Rest is Noise by Alex Ross

If time permits I’d like to get crackin’ on Ned Sublette’s Cuba and Its Music, as well. We’ll see.

One final note: I really need to read more female authors! Suggestions definitely welcome.


Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. Themed Reading Challenge – 2009 – INFO & SIGN UPS – caribousmom pingbacked on 9 years, 7 months ago


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