Thursday, January 12, 2017

Fourth Quarter Reading

I wasn't able to devote a lot of time to reading this quarter, but at least I got around to reading Truly Madly Guilty and Harry Potter and the Cursed Child. My pathetic 5 books this quarter brings my 2016 total to 25 which is barely over my goal of 24, but I'll take it! 

1. Truly Madly Guilty by Liane Moriarty. Something terrible happened at a summer barbecue, but you don't find out what that something is until what seems like practically the end of the book. The plot switches back and forth between the present (weeks after the barbecue) and the day of the barbecue and you slowly learn what happened. I didn't love it as much as What Alice Forgot, but I don't think she'll ever be able to top that one for me. If I was ranking all of Liane Moriarty's books, it would probably be somewhere in the middle of the pack.

2. Harry Potter and the Cursed Child by J.K. Rowling, Jack Thorne, and John Tiffany. 19 years after the close of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Harry's second son, Albus Severus, is starting his first year at Hogwarts. Albus is sorted into Slytherin, doesn't have a lot of friends, and has a poor relationship with his father. He happens to overhear a conversation between Harry and an old man and decides to try to right some past wrongs which of course goes very badly. I so wanted to love this, but it just wasn't the same as the original Harry Potter series. It seemed so short and I kind of hated reading the play format, but with all that said, I ended up enjoying it well enough. 

3. The Best Christmas Pageant Ever by Barbara Robinson. I read this for the first time last Christmas and decided to read it to Corbyn this Christmas. It was fun to read a Christmas book for our nightly reading!

4. Danny, the Champion of the World by Roald Dahl. Danny lives with his father (who is his best friend) in a gypsy caravan. They are poor, but share a happy life together. One night Danny discovers a shocking secret that his father has kept hidden for years. Soon Danny finds himself the mastermind behind a crazy plot to get back at nasty Victor Hazel. If his plot succeeds, he will be the Champion of the World. It was an entertaining book, but the mom in me kind of couldn't get over the fact that this father was teaching his son to do something that is clearly wrong even if it might have been justified.

5. How to Steal A Dragon's Sword by Cressida Cowell. This is number 9 of 11 How to Train Your Dragon books and Corbyn continues to love them (and luckily I don't mind reading them either). 

In addition to reading at least 24 books this year I wanted 12 of them to be books from the categories in Modern Mrs. Darcy's 2016 Reading Challenge. I didn't do a great job selecting books specifically for this challenge and really just read whatever I wanted (and lucked out that I read a book to fit a good number of the categories).

A book published this year: Harry Potter and The Cursed Child by J.K. Rowling, Jack Thorne, and John Tiffany (Fourth Quarter).

A book you can finish in a day: I had a few books in mind for this one and I could have read a book in a day if I did it on our cruise, but I just didn't make it happen.

A book you've been meaning to read: Truly Madly Guilty by Liane Moriarty (Fourth Quarter). A bit of a stretch because it came out July 26th and I read it in October, but for how much I love Liane Moriarty, that is a long time for me to have waited to read it!

A book recommended by your local librarian or bookseller: Keep Me Posted by Lisa Beazley (Third Quarter). Janssen recommended this book and while she's not technically my librarian here in Oregon, she was a librarian by profession before becoming a mother and blogger.

A book you should have read in school: The list of books I could have read for this category is long since I was very busy in high school (cheer + dance company + dance classes at my studio + school classes + friends + church...) and didn't have time to read all the books we were assigned. I should be more embarrassed to admit I made it through AP English by reading book summaries on I meant to read Death of a Salesman by Arthur Miller for this category since I wrote my AP English essay about it (and did well enough to get a 3 on the exam) without actually reading it.

A book chosen for you by your spouse, partner, sibling, child, or BFF: The Martian by Andy Weir (First Quarter). Rog got this for Christmas last year and immediately read it. Then I immediately read it after hearing him rave about it the whole time he was reading it.

A book published before you were born: James and the Giant Peach by Roald Dahl (Second Quarter). I think most (if not all) of Roald Dahl's books fit into this category since he passed away in 1990 and I'm guessing most (if not all) of his books were published before 1986 when I was born. James and the Giant Peach was published in 1961.

A book that was banned at some point: Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone by J. K. Rowling (Second Quarter). I didn't know what to read for this one or where to find a list of books that have been banned and then I saw that Rachel of Maybe Matilda counted reading Harry Potter for this category and after some googling I felt stupid that I didn't know Harry Potter is one of the most banned books ever. 

A book you previously abandoned: We Bought a Zoo by Benjamin Mee (Third Quarter). A bit of a stretch because I never actually started reading this book before, but I thought about reading it and then heard it didn't compare to the movie at all, so I decided not to. But then this year I decided to read it anyway, so I feel like that should count.

A book you own but have never read: I really should have made it a point to do this category since there are definitely books I own but have never read, but sadly I didn't. 

A book that intimidates you: Jesus the Christ by James E. Talmage. I have not actually finished this, but I am about halfway (and it is LONG!) and I specifically started reading it for this challenge, so I'm counting it. I'm glad I had this challenge to push me to read it because it is excellent!

A book you've already read at least once: The Best Christmas Pageant Ever by Barbara Robinson (Fourth Quarter). 

Stretching a few of the categories a bit, I read books for 9 out of the 12 categories. And considering the very busy year we had, I'm ok with that!