Earlier this month, I wrote of my reading plan for this month and the next few months. Let’s review how I’m doing so far:
Milton in May: First up, I planned on joining Rebecca Reid of Rebecca Reads for Milton in May (click button above to learn more) as she read through Paradise Lost. I planned a wrap-up post at the end of each week, on Sunday for The Sunday Salon.
FAIL: I made it through the first two out of 12 books and then decided I already had read Paradise Lost once in college, and that was enough. I’m not in college anymore, and with apologies to Rebecca, because I respect her for wanting to focus on the classics (I’m not enamored with new literature; don’t ask me why, I’m just not), I thought why put myself through this again? I just need to face it. I’m a pulp fiction reader. Period. Under 200 pages, and I’m there.
Faith ‘n’ Fiction Saturday Round Table: Also this month, I planned on participating in the Faith’n’Fiction Saturday Round Table as sponsored by Amy of My Friend Amy. We were to be discussing Peace Like A River by Leif Enger. The e-mail conversation was to take place May 9 through May 15, with posts later on our blog Saturday, May 29. I did send an e-mail to Amy, letting her know I wouldn’t be participating and she suggested I might join the group for a discussion of Godric by Frederick Buechner, an author whose nonfiction I always have enjoyed.
FAIL: I did get the book out of the library and started to read it, but hated it almost immediately. To me, with apologies to those who loved the book, it read like a faux John Irving. Blech.
Agatha Christie Reading Challenge: In May and all other months, I also planned on continuing the Agatha Christie Reading Challenge (click on the button at left to join) as started by Kerrie of Mysteries in Paradise, with the plan to read at least one Agatha Christie book a week in addition to any other reading I might do for the week.
PARTIAL FAIL: I have read a couple of Agatha Christie novels, with at least one more planned before the next Agatha Christie Reading Challenge Carnival this weekend, if I can. So far, I have reviewed Appointment with Death, and still have to review Murder for Christmas, although that one might be more of a mini-review, since I wasn’t thrilled with it.
Other books: In addition to those challenges, for May, I had a few other lighter reads, including Steve Martin’s autobiography, Born Standing Up and the John Dortmunder series by Donald E. Westlake, which I’m reading in chronological order. The series only has 14 novels and two shorter works, so I should be done by the end of the summer. So far, I have read The Hot Rock and Bank Shot and recently finished Jimmy the Kid. I finished Nobody’s Perfect last week and Why Me? this week. Next up is Good Behavior, which I plan to start later this week.
PARTIAL SUCCESS: Since I’ve been moving right along with the Dortmunder books, I’ll call this a partial success instead of a partial fail. I still have to read the Martin autobiography, but should get to that before the end of the month, now that I’ve cleared the proverbial table of Milton and Enger.
Bottom line: Unfortunately, I’ve over-committed myself previously and here I did it again. I have yet to learn that I am not a very good at multitasking. I am better at focusing at one, two or maybe, if I’m lucky, three things at the same time, and that’s all. Go to four as I tried this month, and all is lost. Maybe next month, I’ll learn where I plan to focus on Christie, Westlake and Ian McDonald. A friend of mine gave me two of McDonald’s books, River of Gods and Brasyl, last month.
Then in July, continue with Christie, the No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency and Sherlock Holmes, again keeping it to three.
In August, who knows? Somehow I bet it will include Christie again, but maybe a break from the McCall Smith and Conan Doyle…but for now, no plans set in stone.