Thursday, June 5, 2008

Summer Assignment: Book challenge

I've given myself a summer assignment: Read non-baby-related books. As I looked back over the last ten months, I realized that I have only read the Bible or books that have to do with babies, marriage or parenting. I cannot let a whole year go by without reading some actual literature; the English teacher in me will not permit such insanity. Yes, being a mama is very important, but it's also important to maintain good reading habits and stay in touch with a world beyond babies. This challenge, of course, extends to you as well, so feel free to comment if you're going to take the plunge with me.

Here are the rules:
1. I may not count any books that mention "poop consistency" or "introducing solid foods" toward this goal.
2. Five of the following titles must be read between June 9 and September 1. I wanted to do ten, but I do have a child to chase around and a sandy beach that desperately needs my attention for some of the summer.
3. I will be sure to review each book after completing it, and if you're taking the plunge you should comment on each review telling me whether I've missed the mark or you totally agree.
4. I will pick a new book from the list after I finish reading the previous pick.
5. If you're taking the challenge, try to read the same books I'm reading so we can read together.
6. I will post a list of titles here; if you want to take part in choosing the books we/I read this summer, leave a comment with your top 2 choices. You can comment even if you do not want to take part in the challenge but just want me to read a specific book and review it.
7. The first book choice will be announced June 9.

Here are the choices (all English-teacher approved, of course!):

1. Ordinary People by Judith Guest

2. Searching for God Knows What by Donald Miller

3. Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury

4. Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen

5. Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis

6. Like Water for Chocolate by Laura Esquivel

7. How the Garcia Girls Lost Their Accent by Julia Alvarez

8. Cry, the Beloved Country by Alan Paton

9. The Color of Water by James McBride

10. Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden

11. The Secret Life of Bees by Sue Monk Kidd

12. Love the One You're With by Emily Griffin

13. The Audacity of Hope by Barack Obama

14. Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison

15. My Sister's Keeper by Jodi Picoult

If you're joining me, leave a comment or send word via carrier pigeon. Also, please post a comment about which two books are the most worthy reads whether you are joining me or not! Happy choosing.
If you opt not to take the Summer Assignment: Book Challenge and only read one fiction book this summer, read the The Kite Runner by Khaled Housseini. It's amazing.


  1. My Sister's Keeper by Jodi Picoult is really good, we had it as a summer reading assignment before my freshman year at college. It's a quick read so it'll be easy to finish with Gabe keeping you busy:)

  2. Awesome! Thanks for the vote. =) And thanks for being the first to make a recommendation. =)

  3. AUDACTIY OF HOPE!!!! surprise here about my suggestion!!! It will give you better insight into how Barack's mind works. He's brilliant.

    However, Geisha is also fabulous.

  4. Hi There.
    A very cool idea. Hope you can meet your goal. I will join in with you as I am always looking for a motivation to a read a book...a book that is literature and not about kiddos.
    I vote for: Cry, the Beloved Country
    It sounds interesting.

  5. I am hopeless since all of my books are baby-related these days but I do have Memoirs of a Geisha if you want to borrow it sometime. It's a pretty good book and super fast read... much better than the movie.


  6. Secret Life of Bees and Memiors of A Geisha. :) I will try to join you on some of these titles. Great idea!

    (PS Not on the list but also awesome reading: "The Last Lecture" (not depressing) and "The Red Tent."

    Take Care,


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