Tag Archives: Book A Week

Book a Week Reading Challenge

I was going for 45 books this year, to meet a writerly challenge set out by some writing friends, but now I think, why not a book a week? That said, some books won’t be bloggable, because I might be too embarrassed to mention them by name, whether they were forced upon me by book clubs, or are part of the guilty ‘lite’ read shelf.

Please share any books you have recently read and loved! I’m always looking for recommendations.

What I’m reading right now: Bride of New France by Suzanne Desrochers

Here are a few of the books (spoiler free and with just a hint of the gist) I’ve enjoyed since taking up the challenge on January 1:

The Divinity Gene (short stories) by Matthew Trafford – inventive and wild – ‘fantastical and fantastic’

People of the Book by Geraldine Brooks – the mystery surrounding an historical text and its conservator

Wild by Cheryl Strayed – memoir of hiking the Pacific Crest Trail to transcend loss

The Dinner by Herman Koch – mystery asks how far you’d go to protect your child

Someone Else’s Love Story by Joshilyn Jackson – set in Georgia, lilting and lush, smart and funny voice, unpredictable and bittersweet plot

Seven for a Secret by Mary C. Sheppard – captures the Newfoundland Outport life of youth before the highways and centralization changed everything

BOOKS I READ BEFORE THE CHALLENGE AND LOVED IN 2014 INCLUDE:

All My Puny Sorrows by Miriam Toews

Between Gods and Far to Go by Alison Pick

The Orenda by Joseph Boyden

The Signature of All Things by Elizabeth Gilbert

Sweetland by Michael Crummey

February by Lisa Moore


Book Blog – Literary Intentions – A Book A Week in 2015 & You?

How many books are you planning to read this year? Will you log and record them like notches on your literary belt before the details of what you’ve read slip almost entirely from your memory? Pile-of-Books-2That’s my plan for this writing sabbatical year.

As much as I am always reading something, I love the fact that this A Book A Week (52 minimum) in 2015 challenge has me not only reading with more of a sense of deadline and purpose, but I’m also making notes of things that stood out, instead of just turning down the bottom corner of a page on a memorable passage that I will almost certainly never go back to. That’s kind of symbolic of how much of what I read I forget, and the scattered attention span and memory deficit of our internet heavy lives. I’ve always read several books a month, but to even remember their titles a few months later is a challenge in itself. I’m usually reading 3 or 4 books at the same time, and this challenge is helping me focus a little more closely on one (ok, two) at a time.

I’m also more self-conscious of the narrative nutrition (or lack thereof) of a given selection, given the writerly company I’m in. (Thanks to Amy Stuart for quantifying a reading challenge for the year!) For example, I just read a technical book on writing for the web – that I will definitely not be including in my 52 books for 2015, no matter how much it looks and smells like a book, and no matter how helpful it might have been in explaining some concepts to me. On that note, I wouldn’t be surprised if some of my guilty pleasure (ie – YA) selections don’t make it onto my official list, either – though those reads will probably push me well over the book-a-week mark to 52 on that less official tally 🙂

My current reading: (Books 2 and 3 on the list) The Writer’s Notebook II – Craft Essays from Tin House, and The Divinity Gene by Matthew Trafford, Short Stories of amazing inventiveness.

You can read my blog post on Book 1 – The Girl Who Was Saturday Night by Heather O’Neill here:  https://tenalaing.com/2015/01/09/book-blog-the-girl-who-was-saturday-night-by-heather-oneill-45-book-reading-challenge/

You can read about my Literary Intentions for 2015 – (My Writing Sabbatical Year) here: https://tenalaing.com/2015/01/01/writing-sabbatical-a-midpoint-check-in/