Wednesday, November 23, 2016

A different goal for 2017

In 2016, I set a goal to read 45 books.

I didn't really think this through, but I figured that since I had read 44 books in 2015, I could probably add one more without too much trouble.

The problem with setting goals is that then you feel compelled to meet your goals.  And depending on what is going on in your life, meeting said goals can feel, or actually be, impossible.  And even if it isn't impossible, knowing that you have a goal to meet and a deadline can make you feel a little stressed.  

I don't really like feeling stressed as it concerns reading since reading is my escape and relaxation.  

These are the books I have read in 2016:

A Man Called Ove
Out of My Mind
The Ocean at the End of the Lane
Ordinary Grace
The Things They Carried
The Girl on the Train
As I Lay Dying
Good Masters, Sweet Ladies
A Single Shard
Julie of the Wolves
Long Day's Journey Into Night
So We Read On
Modern Romance
All the Light We Cannot See
We Were Liars
When Breath Becomes Air
Their Eyes Were Watching God  (a reread in order to teach)
Stone Fox
Slaughterhouse Five
The Double Bind
The Light Between the Oceans
The Mysterious Benedict Society
When You Reach Me
The Hunger Games
And Then There Were None
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night
Catching Fire
The Little Prince
The Family Fang
Gathering Blue
The Doll Bones
The History of Love
Beowulf (Seamus Heaney version)
Light in August
The Outsiders
A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius
Life Drawing
We Have Always Lived in the Castle
Gertrude and Claudius
Fortunately, the Milk
The Speckled Band
A Case of Identity

I just started The Shack and will finish that up before the end of the year.  

Even though I beat my goal, I think I've decided that next year I'm going to have a different strategy.  Rather than quantity, I'm going to focus on selecting some quality books that I've never read.  I did a bit of this in 2016 with Faulkner.  I had never read him and knew that I should probably forfeit my English degree as a result.  There are other authors I know I should read but whom I haven't yet, such as Dostoyevsky.  Some authors I have read, but I haven't read their magnum opus; Les Miserables (Hugo) and War and Peace (Tolstoy) are examples.

The first of these "quality books" for 2017 is Moby Dick.  Brave New World or Alas, Babylon might make the list, too. 

1 comment:

Jennifer said...

Good luck with Moby Dick! I had to read that in high school and it is long and very tedious in parts. There are chapters on the preparation of whale blubber (which we were, thankfully, allowed to skip).