See ya winter, it’s time for spring

Well, maybe not for real. Winter’s still got another few weeks (though with four inches of snow on the ground here, I’m thinking it will never end), but around here, my spring reading list starts in March so gosh darnit — it’s spring!

I like to sing “let the sun shine in!” whenever I think of winter giving way to spring.

Anyway, winter blues aside, I’m really happy with my Winter 2012-13 reading list. Ever since work + roller derby let me know I wasn’t going to have as much time to read as I like, I’ve been scaling back on my reading lists. Giving myself eight to nine books a season, instead of 13 to 15. But this winter (which began Nov. 1, in blog time), I’ve been plowing through books and had to add a few books to my list as I went along. Sure, none of them were too terribly difficult or long; I think The World According to Garp probably took the longest, though Mornings in Horseback was a slow read too.

In honor of my recently revamped reading schedule, I’ve given myself a few challenges this spring. OK, a lot of challenges.

  • Guns, Germs and Steel — Jared Diamond
  • Grendel — John Gardner
  • In Cold Blood — Truman Capote (Favorites Project)
  • The Remains of the Day — Kazuo Ishiguro
  • Balzac and the Little Chinese Seamstress — Dai Sijie
  • The Feminine Mystique — Betty Friedan
  • Notes from the Underground — Fyodor Dostoevsky
  • Rebecca — Daphne Du Maurier

While last winter had a few fluffier books here and there (I’m looking at you Special Topics in Calamity Physics and Water for Elephants), this spring is going to be pretty hardcore.

First up, I’m tackling Gun, Germs and Steel, a science/history/cultural study I’ve been wanting to read since I worked at Half-Price Books. I’m looking at it right now and it’s pretty hefty — literally, it’s not too thick but it’s heavy.

In addition, I’m throwing myself into feminism this spring with The Feminine Mystique, which I’ve been itching to read in earnest lately since I heard a report about it’s 50th anniversary on NPR. Ideas around “new feminism” are one of my pet interests — particularly this hip homemaker trend and the idea that women are reassessing “the workplace.” Anyway, that was the gist of the NPR story and at the base of it was Betty Friedan’s manifesto. I think it’s time I finally read it.

Two big nonfiction books in one season, you ask? I know. I haven’t done something like that in…well, a long time. But I do want to read more nonfiction and diving in with what is most interesting right now seems like a good way to go about it.

The fiction, meanwhile, is a collection of books I have laying around and one (Rebecca) that I’m reading so I can make some progress on some life lists. That 25 Books to Read Before You’re 25 isn’t going to finish itself, and I’d like to finish before I’m 30.

This March, I’m hoping that some other good things are on the horizon — things I can’t tell you about yet, but I’m hoping they’ll make my spring even better. Let’s go March!

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