Reading my way through summer

27 Jul

What I wish I was doing:

“In 2012, the world is coming to London for the Olympics and I’m going out to meet it,” says British writer and Cambridge graduate Ann Morgan. “I’m planning to read my way around as many of the globe’s 196 independent countries as I can, sampling one book from every nation.”

Check out her reading list here, which has links to the reviews of the books she’s already completed. What a project!

What I’m actually doing:

Stumbling through a reading list of 90+ books, wondering why I’ve chosen the avant garde as my focus within modernism for my MA exams. Well, OK, I love the avant garde from the early 20th century. However, when one begins to memorize details from books one is faced with the following difficulties:

– avant garde modernists wrote monumental tomes (why, hello, Ulysses, The U.S.A. Trilogy, etc.)

– avant garde filmmakers are interested, often, in fragmented images (meaning that I have to memorize somewhat un-related bizarre things with no tradiational narrative plotline to keep things organized in my brain)

– I love books like Woolf’s The Waves,  but it takes me about four times as long to read books that are this difficult than it does to power through a more traditional novel

What I plan to do:

Write mini-reviews or notes on each of the books, films, plays, poems, etc., that I’m reading along the way, in hopes of keeping myself accountable and having some kind of record besides my trusty purple-ink-stained journal come January, when these exams will take place: three days, three hours each day, 30 books per session. Ay!

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4 Responses to “Reading my way through summer”

  1. londonchoirgirl July 27, 2012 at 12:25 am #

    Best of luck with it all Kristina. I’m doing ‘Ulysses’ for Ireland so we’ll have to compare notes. Hope you get time to enjoy the summer.

    • kristinareardon July 27, 2012 at 10:50 pm #

      Thanks! And good luck to you, too–almost 200 books in a year. That’s quite a feat! Let me know what you think of ‘Ulysses’; it took me a whole summer to read and make sense of…

  2. _thp (@_thp) July 27, 2012 at 1:12 pm #

    Have you encountered goodreads.com yet? Because it’s my new favorite thing.

    • kristinareardon July 27, 2012 at 10:51 pm #

      Yes! I enjoy perusing others’ reviews but have yet to post anything of my own… Maybe I should start?

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