Summer reading list

So yesterday I posted about how I will be participating in my friend Megan‘s summer book challenge. I spent some time going through her categories and assessing books I’ve been meaning to read or books I’ve bought/downloaded but haven’t read yet and came up with a rough outline of which books I want to read this summer! Here’s what I’ve got so far…

Check out all the books I already had that will work for my summer reading challenge! And yes, that is my Kindle on top.

5 points: Read a book chosen for the 2012 World Book Night.
Friday Night Lights

I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings
The Absolutely True Diary of a Part Time Indian
Ender’s Game
Little Bee
The Brief and Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao
Q is for Quarry
Kite Runner
A Prayer for Owen Meany
The Stand
The History of Love
The Namesake
The Things They Carried
Bel Canto
The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks
The Glass Castle
The Book Thief

Any of these books will work for me. So many of the books listed I’ve read and loved (The Poisonwood Bible! Kindred!), but there were also a bunch I’ve been wanting to read (Ender’s Game!). This category will not be difficult to fulfill.

10: Read a book you were supposed to read in school, but either bailed on or Cliff-Noted.
Generation Me

Yeah… I was supposed to read this as a staff member for the 2010 freshmen common reading program at Mizzou. That didn’t happen. So I’m going to read it now! It’s been sitting on my shelf for two years, and now that I’ve been learning about millennials in grad school, I’m even more interested to read it.

10: Read a memoir or narrative nonfiction book.
A Supposedly Fun Thing I’ll Never Do Again

This has also been sitting on my shelf for more than a year. My first David Foster Wallace experience!

15: Read a book in one day. (Must be at least 150 pages long.)

Again, sitting in my shelf waiting to be read. I mostly put it in this category because I had it, have been meaning to read it, and it’s just over 150 pages long, which means reading it in a day is doable, though I will probably be depressed later thanks to the subject matter.

15: Read a book that you’ve always wanted to read but haven’t gotten around to yet.
Ender’s Game

The Glass Castle
The Book Thief
The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks
Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me?

Honestly this will probably be the easiest category to fulfill. There are hundreds, literally, of books on my “to-read” list on Goodreads. I will find something to take this spot.

20: Read a pair of books that have antonyms in the titles.
The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks/The Beautiful & Damned
Journey to the Center of the Earth/Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea

I’ll probably end up reading the latter two because I got them both for free on my Kindle, and the match up of “earth” and “sea” is less of a stretch than “immortal” and “damned.” Plus, it’s a Jules Verne match-up. Funsies.

20: Read a book that is set in a place you’ve never been but want to visit.
The Kitchen God’s Wife (San Francisco)
Bee Season (Washington, D.C.)
Books set in Australia
Books set in the UK

I don’t want to limit myself in every category, so I’ll probably be on the lookout for books set in SanFran, D.C., Australia or the UK. When you haven’t been too many places, it’s not too difficult to read a book set in a place you’ve never been but want to visit.

25: Find a book written the year you were born that was later made into a movie. Read the book and watch the movie; compare. Or find a movie released the year you were born that was based on a book. Do the same thing.
Shoeless Joe (Field of Dreams) – Movie in 1989
Dead Poets Society (Dead Poets Society) – Book in 1989
A Prayer for Owen Meany (Simon Birch) – Book in 1989

Again, I haven’t decided, but this one should be fun!

25: Go into a bookstore or library. Pick any bookshelf. Read the third book from the left on the fourth shelf from the top. (If it’s not at least 200 pages, pick the next book to the right.)

Obviously this will depend on the bookstore/library of my choosing. I also may have to do a digital store/library depending on my access in Oregon. I hope I can gain access to a library there, but I’m not sure I’ll be able to.

25: Read a book about which you’ve heard bad things. (Hey, you can’t knock it ‘til you’ve tried it, right? And I’m upping the points to make it worth your while.)
I Hope They Serve Beer in Hell
The Tenth Circle
Revolutionary Road
A Clockwork Orange

This one was hard for me because really, I don’t want to read A Tale of Two Cities or something equally as skipped-in-high-school as Dickens. So I checked out some lists on Goodreads (“Worst Books of All Time” and “Most Depressing Books of All Time”), plus Megan’s own lowest-rated books she’s read, haha! We’ll see what I can do with these options.

30: Read a trilogy. Total page count for all three books together must be at least 500 pages.
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo
The Girl Who Played with Fire
The Girl who Kicked the Hornets’ Nest

I’ve had the first book unread on my shelf for two years, so this was also a no-brainer. Jumping on the Lisbeth Salamander train!

And with that, I’m ready for May 1!
Semi-Charmed Summer Book Challenge


16 thoughts on “Summer reading list

  1. Be sure to Dr. Peck-Parrott about Generation Me after you read it. During my academic interview for SAAHE we had a pretty interesting conversation.

  2. I’ve read almost all the books in your top category, and “The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lachs” is one of my favorites of all time. Definitely read that one! 🙂 I’d skip “The Glass Castle” and “A Prayer for Owen Meany.” Meh! And for the last category… I actually really enjoyed “Atonement,” although it’s been years since I read it. It’s definitely better than the movie!

  3. OH Lindsay, I seriously can’t wait to do this – I have a lot of plans for this summer, but this should be fun and exciting and most likely accomplishable. I actually LOVED the glass castle and a prayer for owen meany [wrote papers on both, loved them so much!], but it looks like you have some awesome books to choose from!

  4. This is cool. I was just thinking I should read some books this summer, but didn’t know which ones (I don’t have a list going – it’s been so long since I really had the time to read a lot for fun…although I’ve never really been a HUGE reader, but I do enjoy it). So, I think I’ll do this too! I may not finish it, though. We will see. 🙂

    Have fun reading!

    • Yeah! If you’re looking for a list, you should check out that 2012 World Book Night list. I’ve read several on there already and loved them. It has 30 books, so it has a good selection!

  5. For your places you want to visit book, check out Fortune is a Woman by Elizabeth Adler…set in San Fran, China, and England.

  6. Make sure you read Ender’s Game. Really good, and very interesting. Check out the publish date before you read it. The author is Mormon so there are also some interesting moral issues as well. Besides if you like sci-fi at all you will enjoy it.

  7. Awesome books! I was about to tell you I hated The Tenth Circle, and then I saw you got it from me! lol It’s the only Jodi Picoult book I can honestly say I did not like; usually I LOVE her. Also, the World Book Night category is one of the hardest for me to pick because I think all the books look so good! All the ones I’ve read, I’ve liked, and all the ones I haven’t read yet, I’ve wanted to lol. Final thought: The Stieg Larsson trilogy was great, but it is a little long. Just something to keep in mind. 🙂

    I can’t wait for May 6 to see how everyone’s first week went! I also can’t wait until May 1 to start on my list lol. Thanks again for participating and blogging about it!

  8. I think Push is a good choice for reading in one day – that was a book I got through in one sitting, even. Though it’s quite disturbing, it’s compelling. Good luck with that! Let me know what you think of it.

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