Unless otherwise attributed, all content, text or image, on this site is © TaunaLen 2005-2011.
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Saturday, June 23, 2007

Summer Does Come

Hi. My name is TaunaLen, and I am a book-addict.

(Hi TaunaLen.)

Thomas Carlyle once said “Long stormy spring-time, wet contentious April, winter chilling the very lap of May; but at length the season of summer does come.”

Yes, Mr. Carlyle, summer does come. And with it, for me, comes the end of the Spring Reading Thing Challenge 2007. Back in March, I revealed my book addiction, and shared with you, my TBR pile:

Now that Spring is over, and Summer has come, it’s time for true confessions. Here’s how I fared with my stack of books:

Stepping Heavenward by Elizabeth Prentiss – FINISHED THIS BOOK, and posted a review here. (One down, many to go!)

Inkheart by Cornelia Funke – FINISHED and LOVED this book. This one was a new author, and I loved her. She knows me, rather, she knows exactly how I feel about books. Woven throughout this story are the philosophies of a book loving father and the more I read, the more my soul sang about pages, and endpapers, and covers. This book and this author are keepers. I have Cornelia’s next two books waiting in line.

Daisy Fay and the Miracle Man by Fannie Flagg – FINISHED. And it was okay. I am a Fannie Flagg fan, but this one was a bit of a let-down.

The Princess Bride by William Goldman –- FINISHED. And I loved it! Almost as good as the movie – INCONCEIVEABLE as that may be. I reviewed this one alongside Daisy Fay and the Miracle Man here.

Digging to America by Anne Tyler – FINISHED. And reviewed here.

Emma by Jane Austen – FINISHED. I enjoyed this book, really! I still prefer Pride and Prejudice, but this one is a keeper. I did not, however, post a review. I know; I dropped the ball on this one. Sorry!

Believing God by Beth Moore – Well – here’s where the truth comes out. I had a delay in starting the Book Club Connection Group with my church…so this book has been put back on the shelf, until the fall. I know I could have read it anyway, but I decided to wait, until I could share it with others.
The Art of Standing Still by Penny Culliford – OK, more truth… I had serious intentions to read this one. But then Deena over at the Bookshelf reviewed it and I don’t even think it got any bookmarks. I moved it to the bottom of my list, and it sits there still. I will probably read it someday. If I ever get through the multiplied stacks of books I’ve ordered but haven’t yet read. Oh well.

Cure for the Common Life by Max Lucado –- I am about 1/4 of the way through this one. It’s good so far…but I did not finish it in time for the challenge.

A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith – This one is still a favorite from my high school years, though I didn’t even make it to the first page for this challenge. I will read it, maybe this summer!

Six out of ten… that’s still a passing grade, isn’t it? Funny, I was never satisfied with a D in school. Katrina posted some ‘end of the challenge’ questions. I guess all three of my regular readers are dying to know the answers, so I’ll do my best:

What was the best book you read this spring?

Hands down, it was the children’s book: Inkheart by Cornelia Funke. I truly enjoyed Princess Bride – but Inkheart gets my top vote, and her next two top my future reading pile!

What book could you have done without?

That would have to be Daisy Fay and the Miracle Man. I wish I’d moved it farther down in the pile, and read A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, instead.

Did you try out a new author this spring? If so, which one, and will you be reading that author again?

Yes, Cornelia Funke, and Yes, very soon.

If there were books you didn't finish, tell us why. Did you run out of time? Realize those books weren't worth it?

I guess I would say that I ran out of time. Really, that’s the simplest answer.

Did you come across a book or two on other participants' lists that you're planning to add to your own to-be-read pile? Which ones?

Well, to tell you the truth, I had ten books in my TBR pile when I started this challenge. I found some really great books that I wouldn’t let myself read until I was finished with this endeavor. --- I did break down and read Gregory Maguire’s Confessions of an Ugly Stepsister. It was classic Maguire, and a very satisfying read. --- So, I started with ten books, read six, and now have twenty-five books in my TBR pile. Some, like The City of Ember and Water for Elephants came from another challenge participant’s recommendation, and others just appeared there on my stack in the night while I was asleep….honest.

I wouldn’t lie to you.

Personally, I blame the book fairy.

In case you’re interested, here’s my list, now. To be read in any order, at whatever time I so choose….

The Center of Everything by Laura Moriarty
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by J.K. Rowling
Complete Stories and Poems of Edgar Allan Poe
Whispers of Moonlight by Lori Wick
Where the Wild Rose Blooms by Lori Wick
The Children of Hurin by J.R.R. Tolkien
Burning Bright by Tracey Chavalier
Miriam’s Healing by Cynthia Davis
City of Ember by Geanne DuPrau
Inkspell by Cornelia Funke
Dragon Rider by Cornelia Funke
The Goose Girl by Shannon Hale
A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith
Cure for the Common Life by Max Lucado
The Postcard and The Crossroad (2 in 1) by Beverly Lewis
The Revelation by Beverly Lewis
The Preacher’s Daughter by Beverly Lewis
Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen
A Far Country by Daniel Mason
The Dawn Stag by Jules Watson
The Art of Standing Still by Penny Culliford
Will Your Prodigal Come Home by Jeff Lucas
The Silent Gondoliers by William Goldman
A Circle of Quiet by Madeleine L’Engle
The Butterfly House by Marcia Preston

What did you learn -- about anything -- through this challenge? Maybe you learned something about yourself or your reading style, maybe you learned not to pick so many nonfiction books for a challenge, maybe you learned something from a book you read. Whatever it is, share!

I learned that I prefer to read according to my mood, and not a to-do list. I found myself many times looking at the leftovers in my challenge stack, and then gazing longingly at the new books I’d just ordered from Amazon, and being disappointed that I couldn’t dig into that forbidden pile until I finished this one. I ended up breaking my own rules, and sadly, some of the books on my challenge pile were neglected because of it. But, the books I did read, challenge designated, or not, were very grateful to have been chosen! But, discipline is good for me. So, I will be doing future challenges. In the interest of discipline, you understand.

What was the best part of the Spring Reading Thing?

The best part is always the reading, the stories, the characters, the escape into the pages of a book. Then there are the previews. Reading the reviews other challenge participants shared certainly helped me decide which books to add to my next book order.

Would you be interested in participating in another reading challenge this fall?

I am so THERE – and I’m sure I’ll have plenty of books to challenge me!

Any other thoughts, impressions, or comments.

Thank you, Katrina and everyone who participated – for feeding my addiction. For more great challenge wrap-ups, check in over at Callapidder Days, and, as always let Mr. Linky be your tour guide!


Clemntine said...

My oldest daughter and I belong to a mother/daughter book club and WE. LOVE. IT. We've read the great literature that I either Cliff's-Notes-ed my way through or never read at all. I would have if we'd had the great discussions and activities that our book club leader provides!

Enough about me, though. Glad you enjoyed the Spring Thing and I'm going to check out a few of the books on your list.

Lavender Chick said...

Can't wait to sink into a few of your recommendations. Thanks. Just yesterday I was asking one of my reader girlfriends for a recommendation on a new book - she usually has some good ones, but I had already read them! I was in need of some fresh ideas!

Nise' said...

Hi TaunaLen! ;o). I read Emma as well this Spring and really liked it, but agree with you loved Pride and Prejudice more! Will be looking forward to your review on Water For Elephants. I've seen it on quite a few lists.

Jennifer, Snapshot said...

Tauna Len you might want to join my Read Together mission this summer--discuss some of those books with one of those teens.

I want to read Goose Girl, too. I have yet to read Inkheart, but I want to. I just read another review of Inkspell that says that the whole tone of the book is different, but I'll be curious about what you think.

melody is Slurping Life said...

Your reviews are excellent and your list includes several I want to read. Thanks for the time you take in sharing your love of books.

The book fairy? LOL

Mrs. Pivec said...

Wow! I love the list and am impressed! I am not a big fiction reader - tending almost always toward non-fiction. I have, lately, been looking for some good fiction reads for a Christian woman. Actually, I enjoy the classics and have read some, but I am wondering about modern authors. I don't like simple language and a story to just tell a story... I kind of find that sometimes with the specifically "Christian" authors. And yet... I find that some secular writers are 1) either too shallow 2) writing about values that I don't share & 3)write about dark topics, which are not entertaining for me. SO, with those things in mind, can you make a recommendation? or two? or thirty? :) I would LOVE it!

susan said...

I'll have to print this out and keep handy. It's great having the list and even better to see your reviews.

Katrina said...

I definitely want to read Inkheart. I look at it almost every time I'm in the bookstore, but just keep "thinking about it." Your enthusiasm has convinced me to put it on my list! Thanks for being part of the Spring Reading Thing!

Jolene said...

I'm reading Inkheart at the moment, it's so good.

Have you read Dragon Rider by Cornelia as well? I loved it.

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