Summer Reading has long been the domain of children and teens. In fact, we’re sometimes so focused on getting younger folks to read during the summer, it’s easy for people to forget that Summer Reading is important and exciting for adults, too!
This year, CLP is getting more intentional about Summer Reading by asking adult readers to go a step further than simply logging the number of pages or books they’ve read. We’re asking that you set a Summer Reading goal and let us know how it goes! Throughout the summer, we’ll share tips, book recommendations, supplemental readings and library resources related to your goal. Your goal can be anything at all related to reading. To prove it, here’s a look at the Summer Reading goals of some CLP volunteers.
I have a problem. I read the first book in a series, love it, plan to continue the series…and then never do! So, to try and combat this problem, my summer reading goal is to finish at least 10 books from series I have already begun but never finished. On my list? Tower Lord by Anthony Ryan, Blue Lily, Lily Blue by Maggie Stiefvater, and Foxglove Summer by Ben Aaronovitch.
I’m a mother to an 8-year-old boy who would much rather be playing Minecraft than reading, so one of my goals is to supervise his summer reading program as well as read Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone to him at bedtime in the hope that it will inspire him to begin reading chapter books. For myself, this summer I’m going to read books with a landscape theme. One of these is Pilgrim at Tinker Creek by Annie Dillard, another is Montaillou: The Promised Land of Error, the great Annales School historical work by Emmanuel Le Roy Ladurie, and a third is The Great Gatsby. I’m going to read Montaillou with an eye to writing a short story featuring a character in Ladurie’s history, the Cathar shepherd Pierre Maury. Wish me luck!
After weeks of agonizing over what my summer reading goal would be this year, I decided not to decide. Or rather, to decide on a multi-genre goal since I couldn’t settle on all one category of anything. I’m going to read five books, in no particular order.
- Something self-improvement: The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo. I know so many people who have read and loved this book, and I’m a slob, so I’m hoping this will revolutionize my life. Or at least my apartment.
- Something hilarious: Meaty by Samantha Irby. I occasionally read her blog, Bitches Gotta Eat. (Who knew that tales of Crohn’s disease could be so funny?) As you may guess from the title of her blog, the profanity is free-flowing, so not suitable for folks sensitive to that kind of thing.
- Something sciencey: The Soul of an Octopus: A Surprising Exploration into the Wonder of Consciousness by Sy Montgomery. Because nothing screams a serious interest in science like using the word “sciencey.”
- Something from my culture of origin: Me and My Daddy Listen to Bob Marley by Ann Pancake. I’m a native West Virginian, and have a special affinity for stories about my Appalachian homeland. Also, I was roommates with her brother during college for a while.
- Something recommended to me by a CLP librarian: Chasing the Scream: The First and Last Days of the War on Drugs by Johann Hari. I attended the Volunteer Appreciation event in April (which was awesome, by the way!) and Suzy from the South Side branch suggested this based on my special blend of literary nerdiness.
I started out with a pretty ambitions reading goal of all the unread books in my Audible collection. When I actually checked to see how many unread books I had, it turned out to be about 25 books. After doing some quick math, this translated to over 320 hours of reading or about 3 hours of reading every single day through August 31. Since I barely get half an hour of free time every day, this seemed like an over ambitious goal. So, I broke down my books into 3 categories, fiction, education non-fiction, and history non-fiction. My new goal is to read three books from each category this summer, which I think is a little more reasonable. My first book this week was Dead Ice by Laurell K. Hamilton. Hamilton’s Anita Blake series is one of my favorite series books full of horror, action, sci-fi and more. My next pick will have to be something from non-fiction, maybe The Global Achievement Gap by Tony Wagner.
I’ve got a long list of books on my ‘to-read’ list. Some of them have been there for ages, and keep getting pushed to the bottom (you know how it is….when someone tells you about an especially good, or new book that you just have to read… the list just never ends). So this summer, I’m going to the bottom of my list and challenging myself to read books that I have been putting off. The Fountainhead, by Ayn Rand, as well as Africa: Altered States, Ordinary Miracles, by Richard Dowden are two that will definitely bump their way to the top! Another mini goal I have for myself is to read a couple of nonfiction books. I have a tendency to shy away from nonfiction!
Ready? Set? GOAL: Sign up for Summer Reading at carnegielibrary.org/summer, set your goal, receive encouragement and tips, and be entered to win some awesome prizes.