What I Read: July 2013

I read 6 books in July. 3 fiction and 3 non-fiction. 2 on the Kindle and 4 in print.

V is for Vengeance by Sue Grafton. The latest in Grafton’s long running Kinsey Millhone series. I’ve been reading this series since I was in HIGH SCHOOL and the end of the alphabet is coming. I’m interested to see how she handles that.

On the Noodle Road: From Beijing to Rome, with Love and Pasta by Jen Lin-Liu. This was a solid, but not brilliant travel/food memoir that I got as part of LibraryThing’s Early Reviewer program. I had read Lin-Liu’s earlier book and enjoyed it, and I love pasta of all varieties, so this seemed like the book for me. It was a bit of a slow read, and there weren’t any parts that I LOVED. That said it was interesting to hear about Lin-Liu’s experiences, especially in the “in between” places (Central Asia, Iran, Turkey) that I don’t usually read as much about. And some of the food sounded AMAZING. Worth a read if you like this genre.

Lean In: Women, Work and the Will to Lead by Sheryl Sandberg. This book has gotten a lot of press, not all of it positive, but I really liked it. I thought that Sandberg did a good job at discussing the ways in which women can advocate for themselves and advance in their careers, while not in any way dismissing the institutional problems that women face. Well worth reading.

Divergent by Veronica Roth. Another dystopian YA novel (what can I say, they make quick, entertaining reads. Especially perfect for summer!), this one set in what was once Chicago. The population has been divided into 5 factions, based on character traits, with children able to move between factions at age 16. Our hero Tris was raised in Abnegation (character trait: selflessness), but she tests as Divergent (not belonging to any faction), which she learns is a dangerous thing to be. Hunger Games-esque (in that it is dystopian YA), but I liked the romance storyline is Divergent better. This is also going to be a trilogy and I’m looking forward to book two.

Hometown Appetites: The Story of Clementine Paddleford, the Forgotten Food Writer Who Chronicled How America Ate by Kelly Alexander. This book was a great introduction to someone I knew nothing about – Clementine Paddleford, a smart and ambitious Kansas farm girl, who grew up to be a journalist with the New York Herald-Tribune, travelling the world and writing about food. Pretty amazing life, she had.

The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making by Catherynne Valente. A YA fantasy novel that somewhat defies description. Imaginative and magical. Looking forward to reading the sequel.

What I Read: July 2013

Life List Additions/Deletions/Modifications

When I created my life list, I intended to add 10 new items every year on my birthday, until I got to 100. Last year, I sort of spaced on this – what with having an infant, but this year I have things to add. And one thing to delete!

After much consideration, and a good review of exactly what those authors have written, I have decided that I am actually never going to read one work by each winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature. The first guy to win wrote poetry (which we all know is not my favorite). In French. None of which my library has. The second guy wrote a 5 volume history of the Roman Empire. I know me and I’m just not going to read those. I hope to read more of the folks on the list, but I’m never going to read all of them, so I’m going to delete it.

In it’s place, I’ve decide to read all the Caldecott Medal Winners. This should be easier to do since I have a kid and all, although I think some of them I will still just read to myself. We’ll see. Anyway, here are my 10 additions/deletions/modifications for my 35th year:

4. WAS: Learn Spanish. MODIFICATION: Complete PowerSpeak languages online course (from DCPL) for Spanish.
44. Read all the Caldecott Medal Winners: 2013: This Is Not My Hat, written and illustrated by Jon Klassen, 2012: A Ball for Daisy by Chris Raschka, 2011: A Sick Day for Amos McGee illustrated by Erin E. Stead, written by Philip C. Stead, 2010: The Lion & the Mouse by Jerry Pinkney, 2009: The House in the Night illustrated by Beth Krommes, written by Susan Marie Swanson, 2008: The Invention of Hugo Cabret by Brian Selznick, 2007: Flotsam by David Wiesner, 2006: The Hello, Goodbye Window Illustrated by Chris Raschka, written by Norton Juster, 2005: Kitten’s First Full Moon by Kevin Henkes, 2004: The Man Who Walked Between the Towers by Mordicai Gerstein, 2003: My Friend Rabbit by Eric Rohmann, 2002: The Three Pigs by David Wiesner, 2001: So You Want to Be President? Illustrated by David Small; text by Judith St. George, 2000: Joseph Had a Little Overcoat by Simms Taback, 1999: Snowflake Bentley, Illustrated by Mary Azarian ; text by Jacqueline Briggs Martin, 1998: Rapunzel by Paul O. Zelinsky, 1997: Golem by David Wisniewski, 1996: Officer Buckle and Gloria by Peggy Rathmann, 1995: Smoky Night , illustrated by David Diaz; text: Eve Bunting, 1994: Grandfather’s Journey by Allen Say; text: edited by Walter Lorraine, 1993: Mirette on the High Wire by Emily Arnold McCully, 1992: Tuesday by David Wiesner, 1991: Black and White by David Macaulay, 1990: Lon Po Po: A Red-Riding Hood Story from China by Ed Young, 1989: Song and Dance Man , illustrated by Stephen Gammell; text: Karen Ackerman, 1988: Owl Moon , illustrated by John Schoenherr; text: Jane Yolen, 1987: Hey, Al , illustrated by Richard Egielski; text: Arthur Yorinks, 1986: The Polar Express by Chris Van Allsburg, 1985: Saint George and the Dragon , illustrated by Trina Schart Hyman; text: retold by Margaret Hodges, 1984: The Glorious Flight: Across the Channel with Louis Bleriot by Alice & Martin Provensen, 1983: Shadow, translated and illustrated by Marcia Brown; original text in French: Blaise Cendrars, 1982: Jumanji by Chris Van Allsburg, 1981: Fables by Arnold Lobel, 1980: Ox-Cart Man , illustrated by Barbara Cooney; text: Donald Hall, 1979: The Girl Who Loved Wild Horses by Paul Goble, 1978: Noah’s Ark by Peter Spier, 1977: Ashanti to Zulu: African Traditions , illustrated by Leo & Diane Dillon; text: Margaret Musgrove, 1976: Why Mosquitoes Buzz in People’s Ears , illustrated by Leo & Diane Dillon; text: retold by Verna Aardema, 1975: Arrow to the Sun by Gerald McDermott, 1974: Duffy and the Devil, illustrated by Margot Zemach; retold by Harve Zemach, 1973: The Funny Little Woman, illustrated by Blair Lent; text: retold by Arlene Mosel, 1972: One Fine Day, retold and illustrated by Nonny Hogrogian, 1971: A Story A Story, retold and illustrated by Gail E. Haley, 1970: Sylvester and the Magic Pebble by William Steig, 1969: The Fool of the World and the Flying Ship , illustrated by Uri Shulevitz; text: retold by Arthur Ransome, 1968: Drummer Hoff , illustrated by Ed Emberley; text: adapted by Barbara Emberley, 1967: Sam, Bangs & Moonshine by Evaline Ness, 1966: Always Room for One More , illustrated by Nonny Hogrogian; text: Sorche Nic Leodhas, pseud. [Leclair Alger], 1965: May I Bring a Friend? illustrated by Beni Montresor; text: Beatrice Schenk de Regniers, 1964: Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak, 1963: The Snowy Day by Ezra Jack Keats, 1962: Once a Mouse , retold and illustrated by Marcia Brown, 1961: Baboushka and the Three Kings , illustrated by Nicolas Sidjakov; text: Ruth Robbins, 1960: Nine Days to Christmas , illustrated by Marie Hall Ets; text: Marie Hall Ets and Aurora Labastida, 1959: Chanticleer and the Fox , illustrated by Barbara Cooney; text: adapted from Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales by Barbara Cooney, 1958: Time of Wonder by Robert McCloskey, 1957: A Tree Is Nice , illustrated by Marc Simont; text: Janice Udry, 1956: Frog Went A-Courtin’ , illustrated by Feodor Rojankovsky; text: retold by John Langstaff), 1955: Cinderella, or the Little Glass Slipper , illustrated by Marcia Brown; text: translated from Charles Perrault by Marcia Brown, 1954: Madeline’s Rescue by Ludwig Bemelmans, 1953: The Biggest Bear by Lynd Ward, 1952: Finders Keepers , illustrated by Nicolas, pseud. (Nicholas Mordvinoff); text: Will, pseud. [William Lipkind], 1951: The Egg Tree by Katherine Milhous, 1950: Song of the Swallows by Leo Politi, 1949: The Big Snow by Berta & Elmer Hader, 1948: White Snow, Bright Snow , illustrated by Roger Duvoisin; text: Alvin Tresselt, 1947: The Little Island , illustrated by Leonard Weisgard; text: Golden MacDonald, pseud. [Margaret Wise Brown], 1946: The Rooster Crows by Maud & Miska Petersham, 1945: Prayer for a Child , illustrated by Elizabeth Orton Jones; text: Rachel Field, 1944: Many Moons , illustrated by Louis Slobodkin; text: James Thurber, 1943: The Little House by Virginia Lee Burton, 1942: Make Way for Ducklings by Robert McCloskey, 1941: They Were Strong and Good, by Robert Lawson, 1940: Abraham Lincoln by Ingri & Edgar Parin d’Aulaire, 1939: Mei Li by Thomas Handforth, 1938: Animals of the Bible, A Picture Book, illustrated by Dorothy P. Lathrop; text: selected by Helen Dean Fish.
61. Visit the FDR Memorial.
62. Take a yearly anniversary trip with Jami and sans bebe. (I’m going to consider this achieved when we have done this 5 times – although, of course, I hope we’ll continue after that!)
63. Learn how to paper piece a quilt.
64. Make ricotta cheese from scratch.
65. See a moose. A live one. In the wild.
66. Take a physics class.
67. Sew an outfit for Frances.
68. Ride my bike to work semi-regularly.

Life List Additions/Deletions/Modifications