Hello from a warm winter week-end in Manitoba’s marshland and forestland! I am passionate about our adored cats, the plants we grow, and books and music I have gathered all my life. You hear about my reading most because hosting and joining “reading challenges” generates posts. I fell in love with them because they give me somewhere self-competitively and if there are prizes, competitively to direct the private reading I do. These furnish an activity for a pastime that was for a long time solitary. Their main attraction and function is giving me a creative way to categorize the books I choose to read in a year. This one is one of my favourites, which places authors and the contents of their books according to countries in the world.
I quickly saw that most hosts stop at the most inconvenient time of year to choose: December 31st. Too many times, these precious weeks were spent busily filling-in links to my posts and reviews at numerous nost websites, when anyone would rather focus on Christmas and all of the activities that surround that. I continue to recommend running groups February 1 to January 31 like I do. It is one month that makes a difference. I began prioritizing prize opportunities but the most futile thing is hosts who seldom or never read the posts we spent precious enthusiasm preparing! Of highest importance is hosts who care when we share what we finished.
I search for this unadvertized group every year, which I hope makes her feel appreciated. The layout is detailed and surely took a lot of time. Goodness knows the review pages alone for my four groups took a lot of care. Filling in my reading by continent is one of my most satisfying ways to play. I pay attention to where settings are and whence authors come and the other part that appeals to me is that a few of the continents are tricky; outside my reading norm. It pushes me to read something South American (my hardest!), Australian / New Zealander, and Asian. Phyllis A. Whitney saves me there, with her abundance of books, because she was born in Japan. I have almost all of Amy Tan’s books and a few other Asian selections so I will use some of that this year.
I meet challenges with books we have, books plentiful enough that my spouse & I shop within our own home store. I seek no books elsewhere; the point for me is to read-up our own supply. You might find my weak continent odd because I have a huge selection of Hispanic literature. I studied Spanish, speak and read it in fact, since grade 9 through to universitiy. It doesn’t seem I built this collection however, for a love of this literature but because I learned who the greats are and wanted to try them as a grown-up. I only dug into it a couple of years ago and must not think that finding those two or three oeuvres depressing means all South American literature is like that. There must be funny, exciting, or spooky books among them too. Thanks to the “Global Reading Challenge“; I invest a few days reading three such books and see.
I hope starting this year, my posts and articles are read and commented on! This theme is one of my favourite mental scavenger hunts, which is what reading challenges are. I concur with what must have been her thought: it is well worth acquainting the settings and arts of other countries. Either the site used to say, or Kerrie acknowledged that our choices can be based on an author’s residence or birthplace. This year’s post doesn’t elaborate but I reiterate that many of my items are checked-off via an author’s origins.
Fictional is requested and is usually what I bring. A reason is not evident, except preference so I’m not going to stress about hopping over that in a few instances. Margaret Laurence’s writings on her work in Africa are special and important enough to share and one of my Hispanic items might be poetry. I want to count the tough items on my list; South America being a culture I read seldom. We aren’t competing for prizes and our hostess lives too far to smack me. Hehe! Please revisit these categories to see how I match them. I aim for triplicates but will keep recording the books I like best.
“The Red Carnelian” Phyllis A. Whitney 1943 Born in JAPAN
“Ghost Behind Me” Eve Bunting 1984 Born in IRELAND
“Sense And Sensibility” Jane Austen 1811 ENGLAND
“The Distant Hours” Kate Morton 2010 Born in AUSTRALIA
“One-Hundred Years Of Solitude” Gabriel García Márquez 1967 COLUMBIA