Monday, February 04, 2008

My other project

I know sometimes it must seem to the people on this blog that I have elevated being infertile and bitching about it to a full-time job, but I swear it's not true. I also spent at least 10 minutes a day taking care of M, admittedly with the help of Mickey Mouse and the Backyardigans. And also, I read.

To that end, the local library has been invaluable. As compared to the awful, outdated library we had in Maryland, this one is like a candy shop. I have never once gone into our local library and failed to find at least 8 books I wanted to take home with me. It's an embarrassment of riches, and it's turned me into quite the literary slut. I no longer have to deliberate whether a book really looks good enough to spend my money on -- I can just throw anything that looks interesting into my bag.

Fun as this is, I realized recently that all of the books I read are starting to blur together. Sure, I remember the really fantastic ones, but there are so many that just don't make much of an impression. Plus, when I do find one I like, I'm liable to forget the author's name and therefore cannot look for her other books, or I'll forget whether I've read it at all and accidentally check it out again a few months later.

So my New Year's resolution this year was to create and maintain a log of all of the books I read this year. Add even though it's only been a month, it's been a great project so far. I really like being forced to sit down, however briefly, and think about whatever book I just devoured.

I suspect that this exercise is going to lead to my being a more discriminating reader. As I've been logging books, I've realized just how much I read that basically passes right through my consciousness -- it's entertaining for a few hours, but leave no lasting impression. It's a little disconcerting to finish a book, then sit down at the computer and realize that you have not much at all to say about it, something I'd estimate has happened at least seven or eight times so far this year (as of Jan 30, I had 15 books on my log). But it also highlights how great it feels to finish a book and have a lot to say about it.

In case you're wondering, among the really good books I read in January are Jasper Fforde's First Among Sequels, his most recent Thursday Next book (actually this whole series is great, funny, well-written and incredibly imaginative), and Joshlyn Jackson's Gods in Alabama. I'd highly recommend both.

1 comment:

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