Summer Reading List

11 Jun

Bleh… that used to be the dreaded three-word phrase of my high school summers. Not because I don’t like to read; rather, because I had a whole list of books I wanted to read instead of my “assigned” books. As a result, I spent most of June hardly reading anything — one of my assigned books if I was lucky — July giving up my assignment and reading a handful of my chosen books, and the first two weeks of August reading the rest of my assigned books in a frenzied panic.

Ah, the joys of college life. An entire three month period entirely devoted to reading… well, I am supposedly doing research at school this summer, but that involves reading, too. Reading that I actually want to do. And so, inspired by a post that the Poets & Writers website  just posted (see below), I’ve decided to share my own summer reading list — divided, of course, into their own little categories just for your entertainment.

Poets & Writers Summer Reading List

What I have to read for my research (AKA books I really wanted to read anyways that the school pays for…):

– Written on the Body by Jeanette Winterson (actually, I had read this before this summer and it’s one of my favorite books… READ IT)
– The World and Other Places: Stories by Jeanette Winterson
– The Book of Not by Tsitsi Dangarembga
– Woman at Point Zero by Nawal El Saadawi (have finished: very good, quick read — powerful novel)
– Season of Migration to the North by Tayeb Salih (have finished: a piece of African literature I would highly recommend)
– Butterfly Burning by Yvonne Vera
– In Another Place, Not Here by Dionne Brand (very poetic writing)

Books I want to read because I’ve read something else I’ve liked by the author:
– A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius by Dave Eggers (I read his book of short stories How We Are Hungry and could hardly get enough)
– Numbers in the Dark: And Other Stories by Italo Calvino (I read If on a Winter’s Night a Traveler — a wonderful book about the art of reading with many twists and turns)
– Serena by Ron Rash (This is his fourth book, the first of which he’s getting a lot of publicity, but he’s been around a long time and from what I’ve read — The World Made Straight — this guy knows how to write. Also, I very fortunately got the chance to meet him and he’s pretty much the nicest guy ever.)

Classics I haven’t read and feel as though I cannot graduate as an English major without reading:
– Mrs. Dalloway by Virginia Woolf (I know, I’m horrible…)
– Middlemarch by George Elliot (The likelihood of my finishing this before the summer’s end: not very strong)
– On the Road by Jack Kerouac (Okay, I think I could graduate without reading this… but I’d rather tackle this before Middlemarch.)
– East of Eden by John Steinbeck (My friend Jane almost choked on her lunch when I told her I haven’t read this. Therefore, I will read this for you, Jane.)

Purely cover-shopping:
– The Selected Works of T.S. Spivet by Reif Larsen (Apparently it has cool pictures inside… I’m in.)

– Little Bee by Chris Cleave

– Fire to Fire by Mark Doty (Actually just finished this and it blew my mind. BLEW MY MIND. Will be revisiting for years to come.)

Books I’m waiting to come out in paperback (because I can’t afford hardback):
– Yellowrocket by Todd Boss
– The Story of Edgar Sawtelle by David Wroblewski (Oprah’s freaking out about it so I guess it’s worth a read… maybe…)

Alright, that’s it. I probably go on forever, or at least twenty more books, but my iced coffee is starting to look a lot more interesting. Besides, aren’t I supposed to be researching? Actually, I think I’ll break open one of these books instead…

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One Response to “Summer Reading List”

  1. Sarah June 11, 2009 at 4:34 pm #

    You just pleasured me in all of the right places. I love the graphics and everything on this page. Can’t wait to read more!!

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