Autumn Reading Update

Updates are now quarterly

Yes – I missed August and September, so I have decided to go quarterly with the updates. Since I am now writing reviews for NetGalley, I have trailed off in my overall reading updates. However, there have been some great things happening, overall, for me in recent months that I want to share.

Book club

I skipped The Book Report, again, in August (I didn’t have anything to discuss) and in September (I was in California) and I’m not so sure I will be returning in October either. For the past 3 months I have been attending a workshop at Lowe Mill that centers around The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron and that has fed my need for interaction and community. So much so, that I was extremely sad upon leaving Lowe Mill Saturday because it was our final meeting. I’m hopeful that we will continue to get together, but you know how things go. People are busy, but we need to make time for sharing. Humans need connection and if that connection comes through books or art, so much the better.

Book challenges

In July, I participated in The Reading Rush, which I tried really hard to work through. I ended up not finishing any of the books I set out to read in the timeframe allotted (I mean – seven books in seven days – who was I fooling?) but I did complete George Orwell’s 1984, two days after the reading rush completed, which I started during the challenge. So – I feel like it was a great success because it forced me through a book I have always wanted to read. Also – oh my goodness – if you haven’t read 1984, or read it back in the day (high school for most) you NEED to read it again. Orwell was a prophet, unfortunately. But really – pick it up and read it again. The parallels with 2019 are uncanny.

For the month of August, I decided to participate in a more laid back book challenge. One that ran the full month, rather than just a week. For this I chose the Mythathon, run by Jesse at Bowties and Books on YouTube (BookTube) and joined Team Hades (team captain: Cindy from Read With Cindy.) The reason I knew I could complete the challenge is that Cindy was gracious enough to pick a book that covered all the prompts except one, which meant I only had to read 2 books in one month to be successful. And I DID! A Curse So Dark and Lonely by Brigid Kemmerer and Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi were my two reads for this book challenge and they marked the first book challenge I have completed in 2019. I enjoy a good challenge, but finishing one is an even better outcome!! Bonus – the books were really good.

Books completed since my last update with ratings and Read Harder Challenge results:

15. Sister Outsider: Essays and Speeches by Audre Lorde
Completed on 6 August 2019
Rating = *****
Read Harder Challenge Category = n/a

16. Moving Forward: A Story of Hope, Hard Work, and the Promise of America by Karine Jean-Pierre (review here)
Completed on 17 August 2019
Rating = ****
Read Harder Challenge Category = n/a

17. A Curse So Dark and Lonely by Brigid Kemmerer
Completed on 25 August 2019
Rating = ***
Read Harder Challenge Category = n/a

18. Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi
Completed on 28 August 2019
Rating = ****
Read Harder Challenge Category = 10. A translated book written by and/or translated by a woman

19. Saga, Volume 1 by Brian K. Vaughan (writer)
Completed on 19 September 2019
Rating = ****
Read Harder Challenge Category = n/a

20. Hunger Makes Me a Modern Girl: A Memoir by Carrie Brownstein (audio)
Completed on 15 September 2019
Rating = ***
Read Harder Challenge Category = n/a

21. Saga, Volume 2 by Brian K. Vaughan (writer)
Completed on 21 September 2019
Rating = ***
Read Harder Challenge Category = n/a

22. How to Build a Heart by Maria Padian (review here)
Completed on 25 September 2019
Rating = ****
Read Harder Challenge Category = n/a

I think that reading 8 books in 2 months certainly removes the disappointment I was feeling on my last reading update. I realize that three of the eight were graphic novels and one was an audio book, but it is still absorbing content. I enjoyed everything that I read in the past 2 months and I am currently on track to finish out my GoodReads book challenge total (24 books in a year) early! I only need to finish one more book to complete it! 2019 has certainly been a good reading year for me. Now I just need to keep up the momentum going forward.

In case you are not familiar with the Book Riot Read Harder Challenge, here is my initial post (this year) on it, which includes the list and here is the official post on the Book Riot site! This challenge is SERIOUS and I have only been able to cover 3 of the 24 categories so far this year, but I love making the effort and reading outside my usual zone of interest.

I hope that your season of reading is going as wonderfully as mine is! Keep on readin’ on!

Peace, love, and books,

Chantale (aka hippiegrrl)

 

Currently Reading…

1984
Living a Feminist Life
Sister Outsider: Essays and Speeches
The Artist's Way


Chantale Onesi-Gonzalez’s favorite books »