Saturday, December 28, 2013

My December Reading List

Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good night!

Or, well, whatever holiday you happen to be celebrating - or not celebrating.

I've decided that on top of doing my postal blog posts, I would combine some more personal ones as well - differentiating them by their titles. Since it's the week of Christmas, and there was no post on the 25th or 26th in Canada, I figured that I'd write about something else for you guys.

As anybody that knows me will know, I love to read. The majority of the time, although not all the time, the books I tend to reach for during my free time are Young Adult novels. With having to read longer, heavier books and articles during the school months, I find these sorts of stories which don't take me long to tear through to be fun and refreshing.

Since I work at a bookstore, and I'm no longer a teenager, I sometimes judge myself for being an English Literature major that loves to read these types of books. When I hear of fellow classmates or coworkers that prefer picking up something like Dune or The Birth House, I tend to feel like others are judging me as well. But then I pick myself up by rationalizing that it should not matter which age the book is intended for; a good story is a good story. After all, I'm not the only person 21 or older that enjoys reaching for a John Green novel, am I right?

During November, where I was swamped with school assignments, getting just a glimmer of the light at the end of the tunnel known as the end of the semester, I began to wonder as I daydreamed in class what I was going to do during my winter break. One of the main things I wanted to add to the list of "Ways I Will Spend My Freedom" was by reading. As an English major I read a lot, but last month I could hardly remember the last time I had been able to read for pleasure. I received a good chunk of books for my birthday, but had been unable to touch a single one of them.

So during my 8 AM class, while pretending to take notes, I made a list on a lined page in my day planner of books I wanted to read during my winter break. All of the books I received for my birthday were on there, along with some books that I own and either hadn't finished or wanted to re-read. There were a few books that I didn't yet own on there as well, but those were on the back-burner; I own way too many books already.

Although I still like to believe that there is no such thing as too many books, even as I have books touching the crown molding in my bedroom.

The most recent book that I've finished since finishing this semester of school was The Moon and More by Sarah Dessen.

I'm not going to give a full-fledged review of this book, or any of the others that I've been reading lately, but I will say that for anybody that is a fan of Sarah Dessen's books, her newest story will not disappoint. I'm glad that not all of her stories are cut-and-dry love stories, since it makes it a lot easier for me to recommend her books at the store to parents shopping for their daughters that are not yet big readers and want an easy transition into reading.

The first book I picked up was to re-read Dash and Lily's Book of Dares by Rachel Cohn and David Levithan. As of this year, I have re-read the book 3 times in total. Honestly I love this book, and it might just be my favorite book right now. I received it as a gift from my aunt on Christmas Eve one year. I began reading it right away and was hooked by the first chapter. I actually had to force myself to stop reading it that night because it was so good that I actually wanted to savor it. Does this happen to anybody else?

I also picked up Will Grayson, Will Grayson, also by David Levithan but also by John Green. This book really was an enjoyable read, and just so I can laugh again and remember it, I need to tell you about this moment near the end that cracked me up (and don't worry, this isn't a spoiler). There is this incredibly hot, incredibly gay guy that is standing in a crowded place (won't say where) and after hearing the most loveable character of the book, Tiny (who is huge), speak, he tells him he loves him. Then without any other response, Tiny says his phone number out loud, the hot gay guy says his number aloud, and Tiny proceeds to shout to everybody else observing them, "WOULD SOMEBODY WRITE THAT DOWN FOR ME?!" So yeah - just cracked me up.

Also there was Struck By Lightning by Chris Colfer, who is not only a writer but an actor who plays Kurt Hummel in Glee. I will share, first and foremost, that I wouldn't call myself a "gleek" by any means whatsoever - however, my dearest friends in the whole wide world (one of them being the one who bought me this book for my birthday) love the show, so lately I've been watching more of it as a way of bonding with them. Just to share a few quick words about the book, I really did like it and I enjoyed the way Colfer told his story. However, if I hadn't already seen the movie and therefore knew exactly how the story was going to end, I would've been so pissed! Because while the movie starts with the ending and then jumps backwards, the book gives you no warning about how it ends whatsoever. So if you have no ideas about the plot at all, you're probably going to get blindsided by the ending if you didn't somehow see it coming.

So now I have a few other books on my list - I got a good chunk of books as Christmas gifts, which I am always thankful for, although now I don't think I'm going to have enough time to finish all of them before I go back to school on the 6th. Especially since I already have 1 or 2 books that I've owned since before Christmas that are sitting on my shelf unfinished. Well, one is in my bag, that being a biography called Tolstoy and the Purple Chair by Nina Sankovitch. The 2nd book I really want to finish is my first attempt at science fiction, that being Wake by Canadian author Robert J. Sawyer. That book is, by the way, one I would recommend to anybody that wants to get a foot into the sci-fi genre but is feeling a bit daunted by everything that already exists and that might look confusing and complicated.

I think that's about all I wanted to say for now - maybe later I'll ramble on about something else I want to complete but am never sure I will fully succeed at - maybe New Years Resolutions?

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