10 Sep 2013

what to read now that i read again

Hey guys, I remembered how to read!

I’m anxious to keep the ball rolling, but I also had a minor league revelation last week. Okay, it’s a less than minor league revelation. I decided that I need to cut the bullshit and read more YA. Back to my roots. Stop reading shiny adult fiction just because it’s Shiny and New and In Front of You. I returned every non-YA book in my drawer of shame, cancelled all my non-YA holds. Amazingly liberating.  You guys all think I’m crazy, right?

However, now that I am reading more than one book a fortnight, it seems that ah… I’ve nothing much left to read.

In fact, here are my only next-read options, assuming I am avoiding my own bookshelves for the time being.

(No, I don’t need to read The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks for the 700th time…)

(Or do I…)

This season there were so many juicy summer camp books being published. The Interestings. The Yonahlossee Riding Camp for Girls. Both of those got sent back to the library during the Great Adult Fic Purge of 2013. The only summer camp book that survived is Una LaMarche’s Five Summers. I started reading this a few weeks ago while I ate my lunch at work – a common way I “audition” books without the commitment of carrying them all the way home – and it obviously didn’t hook me in terribly hard, otherwise I would still be reading it. But the point of being a Wide and Dedicated Reader isn’t just to read what hooks you, guys. Hate to break it to you. You have to have a certain stick-to-it-iveness. Readerly fortitude. Not every book holds its value in the first thirty pages, not every book lures you to read on with an irresistible pull.

I am saying this as if a mostly un-accoladed YA book about summer camp is a book packed dense with secret value. It probably isn’t. I should shut up… and read Natalie Standiford’s The Boy on the Bridge instead? My Favorite Roommate – otherwise known as The Best New Librarian in the State of Missouri – saw that I added this to my Goodreads queue and replied “DID YOU GET SUCKERED IN BY ALL THOSE BANNER ADS, TOO?” Except she didn’t do it in all caps, because she’s polite. You don’t become the Best New Librarian in the State of Missouri using all caps. Anyway, this book? Plastered all over Goodreads for a few days. Natalie Standiford is an author which I think I should like a lot, but I can never get around to actually reading one of her books. See also: A. S. King, Margo Lanagan, thislistcouldgoonindefinitely. This one is about studying abroad in the 80s and falling in love with a Russian.

Or, I could read this new Matthew Quick which is waiting for me on my hold shelf, Forgive Me, Leonard Peacock. This book is getting a decent amount of post-Silver Linings Playbook buzz. I like supporting YA authors who get mainstream buzz, even if I’m not a super-fan or anything. I’m a reasonable fan of Quick, not a super-fan. I also say “supporting YA authors” like I am buying books. I’m not. I should be. I know. But. I can’t. Isn’t it enough that I facilitated the purchasing of 11 copies using a municipal pool of money for my fellow citizens and I to share? I think so. Oh, and also reading it so I can potentially tell others to read it or blog about it or what have you. This is my contribution to the world, guys. This right here.

You could also lump Gayle Forman into that Paragraph #2 group of authors, except that I actually did read If I Stay. I liked it alright. Never read the sequel, and never read her new “series” – Just One Day. Another book about studying abroad and falling in love. Apparently this is what I’m into right now? Anyway, the sequel is coming out next month, which reminds me of how delinquent I am at reading anything in a timely fashion. Which is kind of the moral of this post. Which is why I’m going to stop writing it and read a motherf%^#ing book.




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