Sunday, July 31, 2011

Sunday Salon - July's Reading and Plans for August

The big thing this weekend is we have our car back. Several weeks go my husband was involved in a crash near our home (no one was hurt, thank God) that resulted in significant damage to the car; it was in the shop for nearly two weeks and we got it back on Friday. We didn't have a car for that time and it is so nice to have it back. We are lucky to live in an area with great public transportation and convenient amenities, but still! What a difference! We spent yesterday driving around just kind of everywhere, finishing out the day with a performance of Twelfth Night at a nearby park, starring a good friend. And that was wonderful.

Today I'm continuing to read Embassytown; I have about three chapters left to go, and it remains a slow but steady read. I also started The Night Circus, Erin Morgenstern's book and Random House's big fall release. I'm enjoying it so far. It's all written in the present tense, something I find a little precious, but I'm trying not to let that bother me too much. Personal taste and all. Oh well.

As far as my reading challenges, I finished two books this month for the Europa Challenge- Get Me Out of Here by Henry Sutton and The Woman with the Bouquet by Eric-Emmanual Schmitt. I'm behind on my Booker challenge- I didn't finish In a Free State this month so I'm going to have to read that and another winner to catch up in August. I'm excited about this year's longlist and I hope I get some time to read at least a couple of the books, but I will certainly read the winner towards the end of the year. And even though I didn't finish my whole science fiction reading list, I'm calling this month a success anyway.

August? In August I'm reading more 2011 releases and catching up on my challenges. At the top of the pile are Roland Merullo's The Talk-Funny Girl, The Vices by Lawrence Douglas, Tiny Sunbirds Far Away by Christie Watson and Everything Beautiful Began After, by Simon Van Booy. I haven't decided on my next two Europas but I'll keep you posted! For the Booker challenge, I'm going to finish In a Free State and give Heat & Dust, by Ruth Prawer Jhabvala, a stab.

What are you up to today? How was your July for reading?
More Sunday Salon here.


Deb Nance at Readerbuzz said...

It's odd, but I seem to be at the bottom of my TBR. Well, at least the part of my TBR that makes my heart flutter. I honestly don't know what to read next. I'm filling in until I do with the latest No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency.

Glad you are back on the road!

Here's my Sunday Salon for this week:
Sunday Salon: How to Read, Use, and Abuse Beautiful and Pointless Novels Like a Professor

And a reminder: Today is the last day for you to throw your hat into the ring for my July Giveaway! Win a $25 Amazon gift card!

Sandy Nawrot said...

I'm a little disturbed that you have called Embassytown slow and steady! I've been wanting to read that, but I don't think I have the patience for slow and steady right now. I want something to grab me by the hair! I'm going to try to write a review or two today, catch up on blogs, read, and relax. Not something I've done here at home for awhile.

Really glad you got your car back! Not having one would suck.

Cassandra said...

I just started Night Circus, too. I'm glad that it's in the present tense. Lately, I've been really annoyed by things that are narrated in the past tense. It feels like I'm trapped in someone's memory of an event, instead of reading an impartial account of it as it happens. I know that's crazy.

Probably has something to do with the fact that I'm teaching freshman comp now and one of the things we're working on is writing about literature in the present tense. Who knows.

I'm really liking it though, and very excited that the author is coming to Houston in October!

caite said...

I did not have a plan for July...I do not have one for August.
I am a slacker.

JoAnn said...

Think I'd die with no car for 2 weeks around here! Glad you have it back and nobody was hurt.

I participated in Paris in July and it looks like the beginning of August will continue with the same theme. Really need to get to our next book club selection soon, too.

Frances said...

Also looking forward to Embassytown but not until September. When I will also begin posting for your Europa project (have quite a few things lined up). But August is all about the Art of the Novella challenge where I will attempt to read all 42 in a month. It seemed like a good idea at the time I conceived of it. :) Happy reading!

Anonymous said...

I really need to get my butt in gear and read some Europas for the challenge. Good luck with your plans for August!

Alyce said...

I'm glad that all is well with your family and that you have your car back. My hubby and I once went without a car for several months while it was in the shop (and our mechanic was in jail - long story there). :) We were thankful for public transportation too.

What is the deal with present tense? Everyone seems to be jumping on the bandwagon with that lately and it's driving me crazy. I've read some books that are good in the present tense, but really - what is the draw? I much prefer books written in past tense.

Anonymous said...

I'm up to (still) 5-foot-7. ;) Sorry, my dad's corny jokes return in his son.

I do plan on reading a couple of books today...about halfway through one and hope to get to the second one. As for July, I did pretty well, considering that it was a busy month.

Twelfth Night: I remember seeing that as a senior in high school and loving it. So, so funny..

Anonymous said...

I am glad nobody was hurt in the accident. Good news.

Kathleen said...

July ended up being a pretty slow reading month for me. I'm hoping August will be better. Glad you have your second car back. Even with great public transportation it is a hassle to be without a car.

Zibilee said...

No car for two weeks? Oh my, that must have driven you crazy! I also am hoping to get started with The Night Circus this week, and have been really looking forward to it. Thanks for the heads-up about the writing style, as that might have irked me had I not known. Have not heard much about Embassytown, so I will be looking forward to your review when it's up. Hope that you have a great and productive reading week over there!

Harvee said...

I have stopped giving my challenges a primary focus as I'm reading a variety of books that don't always fit. It's like bookkeeping, which I find hard to do... Glad to see you are keeping up with the Europa Challenge.

Anonymous said...

How was Embassy Town? I have started and abandoned all other books by this author, but I still would like to give it a try. I'm also doing the Europa Challenge. Here is my July wrap-up:
Emma @ Words And Peace