Thursday, January 5, 2012

Thursday 13: Books to read Q1 2012

Don't you just love the optimism with which that title is stated? Yes, there are BOOKS on my reading list. And yes, 13 of them. For. The. First. Quarter. So there, silly internet feeds, blogs and Facebook. Take that. I'm claiming reading back, for me. Books, in paper form (yes you) I've missed you. Let's fall in love again.

All it takes to get me aching to read is just sitting in front of my bookcases--I have stacks of books I haven't ever read, horrors. I'm sure a girlfriend or two reading this will remember that a few years back I said I wasn't going to buy any new books until I'd read everything in my current bookshelf. Ha ha ha ha. (That laughter could go on for some time...) Alas, that lasted, oh, a month or two. E-books are one downfall, and the discount bookstore is another. Sigh. But all the books on this list are the "real" kind, with paper and spines and ink!

The list includes a couple of re-reads, as well as number of books that have languished for years with my full intention to read them, like, soon. Whatever. The time has arrived.

1. Born to Run, Christopher McDougall. This one has been on the nightstand for far too long... and given my ongoing desire to run (currently lacking motivation, but the desire is still there, for sure), I hope this gives me a wee kick in the butt.

2. Bird by Bird (reread), Anne Lamott. It's been a good five or six years since I first read this book, and so it's faded from my memory a bit but the vague recollections I have are that it was inspiring and motivating in the writing realm. I am hopeful it is a needed boost in that direction for me...

3. Unaccustomed Earth, Jhumpa Lahiri. I can't say enough good things about everything I've read of Jhumpa Lahiri's (The Namesake and Interpreter of Maladies are also great). I read this a few years ago and am looking forward to the reread--it's three stories in one, and should be a quick read too, from what I remember.

4. Floor Sample, Julia Cameron. I first found Julia Cameron via Faith and Will, just last year at the discount bookstore down at the Oregon coast. I very much appreciated her perspective on "spirituality though the storms of our lives" and so am interested in her actual memoir. She was married to Martin Scorsese (who knew? not me) and has had some ups and downs with her professional career--she wanted to be an artist but has known far more success as a writer about the artistic process.

5. The Wishing Year, Noelle Oxenhandler. Another memoir... must be a theme for me right now!

6. Tribal Leadership, Dave Hogan, John King and Halee Fischer-Wright. This book came my way via dear friend Sara, who picked up copies at a conference she was at this fall. I like the general concept and am looking forward to what I can learn from it.

7. On the Threshold: Home, Hardwood and Holiness, Elizabeth J. Andrew. The title drew me in. We'll see how it delivers...

8. The Power of Less, Leo Babauta. A slim volume (or purpose, I imagine!), I think I'll be able to glean good stuff from this book on "limiting yourself to the essential, in business and life."

9.  Stones from the River (reread), Ursula Hegi. I had a big Ursula Hegi crush in the 1990s, and this was the first one I read. I have many others on the shelf, but I'm going back to the beginning, and hope it lives up to my sweet memory of it.

10. The Kite Runner, Khaled Hosseini. I think this is actually a borrowed, some three years later (horrors!) book from my sister-in-law, Kim. (Sorry, Kim, I will get it back to you!) I have been meaning to read it, and meaning to read it... and now I will!

11. Between Two Worlds: The Inner Lives of Children of Divorce (reread), Elizabeth Marquardt. I read this a few years ago, and sent it to a good friends whose parents divorced when she was a child, to get "an insider's perspective." She said it rang true, and I know I appreciated some of the perspective it gave me relative to Seth and his upbringing post-divorce. I hope it does that again, some five years after I first read it. Sometimes I do need a refresher on perspective...

12. Lit: A Memoir, Mary Karr. Memoir! Agan! Apparently quite smartly written, I've been looking forward to this one for a bit.

13. Second Honeymoon, Joanna Trollope. This novel is about mothering and letting go and things coming back around again. Sounds up my alley. We'll see how it goes...

I'm hoping that there's something very immediate and present about having these books on my nightstand and available; in fact, since I started writing this post, I've cracked a couple to see which reaches out and grabs me first/most. Sometimes with books tucked away on my iPad, I actually forget they are there and can spend quite a bit of time downloading new samples rather than reading the ones that I have... maybe those can be Q2 reading!

What's on your reading list for the new year? Let me know (you know I always like new reading ideas!)...

For more Thursday 13s, go here.


  1. I like Bird By Bird too.

  2. You have to believe it or it will never happen. You just break the goal into doable parts... which is basically a book a week.

    Hats off to you for this BHAG.

    Hope you enjoy Born to Run as much as I did... it was different than I first thought.

  3. Thanks for this list- I've cribbed a few titles from it!

    I've read everything by Anne Lamott, but for some reason Bird by Bird didn't do anything for me. I need to try again, when I have focus to actually absorb it.

    I want to FINALLY read Artists' Way this year, re-read Happiness Project (I think I am going to splurge and buy it for my Kindle so I can underline everything and not have to worry about transcribing all the ideas), and read some of the books I picked up last year on prayer and meditation WITHOUT worrying about unerlining and "studying" but just lose myself in the process of reading them. When I get non-fiction books that aren't memoirs, I turn into a student, and I start "studying" the books rather than reading them. It's a bad, bad habit.

  4. Sometimes those re-reads are the best!
    Have a great Thursday!

  5. Looks like a fun list! I read The Kite Runner 2-3 years ago and I LOVED it. The others, I haven't read, but I might be adding them to my list for the year!

  6. Hi Sherilee, great list. Tribal Leadership is on mine too. And Stones in the River made my cry during last year. Very satisfying book.

    Had a laugh about the "silly blogs and Facebook".

  7. A list of books to read, I like that!

  8. Like you, I have stacks of books I haven't read and promise to read before I buy any others. Here are some titles from those 2 big stacks.
    Books I read recently that were wonderful: "A Sense of an Ending" by Julian Barnes; "Bohemian Girl" by Teresa Svoboda (very Willa Cather like); "Luminous Airplanes" by Paul la Farge (compassionate view of messy people!); "The Bread of Angels" by Teresa Saldana--spiritual struggle; "The Cat's Table" by Michael Ondaatje... wonderful story!
    On my list TO read: I just started "Hunger Games" (YA) and half way through "Chasing the Flame"(bio). "The Dovekeepers" by Alice Hoffman; "Think: Straight Talk for Women to Stay Smart in a Dumbed Down World"; "A Train in Winter" WW2 French Underground female agents on their way to the death camps. Condoleeza Rice's recent tome... it goes on...
    I hope to read these before I go to the bookstore again on a rainy day and fall off the wagon. As this is Seattle, that could mean tomorrow. :)

  9. Sorry for the long comment! I know I put in paragraphs but I indented and I just learned that it doesn't recognize that! Next time...

  10. Erin, you can comment any length you want! Thanks for stopping by, it's great to "see" you!!

    And Narelle, yours is not one of the "silly" blogs, no way!

    Thanks to all for your comments, now to get reading!

  11. Erin, I also meant to say that Sense of an Ending and Hunger Games are on my Kindle, waiting for me... along with WAY too many other samples and downloads... first things first!

  12. Remember when you were in tenth grade and you and I watched Thorn Birds? Well, I decided to read that again. I actually started it in 2011 and got through it pretty quickly.

    Actually I was looking for a quote and now know where to find it when my roses bloom for the first time this for it some time in May.

    Love your wonderful zeal for books again. I am in a great one right now about the men who wrote the King James Bible back in the 1600's. Very good. But then I love Adam Nicolson's books.

  13. What a lovely list. I love lists of books. Let us know how you get on! :)


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