- Fizzy Thoughts: Another reading challenge

Another reading challenge

Monday, December 03, 2007

I really like the idea of this one...

There are two ways to approach this challenge. Either read four books by authors in one of the six categories (you can read more than one category, but you must read four books; not two books in one category and two in another) OR read six books, one from each of the six categories. The categories are:

1. African/African-American

2. Asian/Asian-American (This is not just East Asian -- Chinese, Korean and Japanese -- but also Indonesia, Singapore, Thailand, Philippines, and the Central Asian -Stans.)

3. Hispanic/Latin American

4. Indian/Indian-American (Again, books by Indian authors; not books by white authors set in India.)

5. Middle Eastern (Iran, Iraq, Israel, Palestine, Turkey...)

6. Native Peoples (Can include Native American, Inuit, Polynesian --Maori, Samoan, etc -- Siberian natives and Australian Aborigines.)

I'm going with the second option. I'll be reading...

1. Things Fall Apart, by Chinua Achebe (African)

2. Twinkle, Twinkle, by Kaori Ekuni (Asian)

3. Ines of My Soul, Isabel Allende (Latin American)

4. From Heaven Lake, by Vikram Seth (Indian)

5. Istanbul, by Orhan Pamuk (Middle Eastern)

6. Sky Dancer, by Witi Ihimaera (Native Peoples - Maori)

A few words on why I chose what I chose. Things Fall Apart is one of those books that always seems to pop up when I'm cruising through bookstores. And Wikipedia made Chinua Achebe sound like an interesting guy. I found Twinkle, Twinkle while doing an online search for Japanese authors. This was my last category, and I was trying to find a female author...I clicked on Kaori Ekuni because the name just looked beautiful. I have high hopes for Twinkle, Twinkle. I was going to read 100 Years of Solitude for my Latin American selection, but I've started the damn thing twice, so I'm going with Ines of My Soul, because it's been on one of the Borders tables for the past two weeks and it keeps catching my eye. I'm so shallow. From Heaven Lake is a travelogue...need I say more? Istanbul is another book I'm determined to finish...I gave it up last year, so it's getting resurrected for this challenge. And finally, I wanted to read a Maori author. Not knowing anything about Maori authors, it was a challenge to find one. I finally found Witi Ihimaera, who wrote Whale Rider (anyone remember that movie?). Since I don't like to read books if I've seen the movie (and vice versa), I'm going with Sky Dancer, which I know nothing about, because none of the online bookstores that I frequent had a review or blurb on it. Even though they sell it.

Thanks for organizing this one, Melissa. I'm really looking forward to reading these books.

7 comment(s):

MackAttack said...

I always knew you liked reading, but reading your blog takes my understanding of your book loving/book reading to a whole new level. I mean, you really, really, really like reading!!!


Melissa said...

You're welcome. I'm glad you caved and decided to do this one. I'm looking forward to reading about the books you've chose. I agree: Kaori Ekuni is a beautiful name. (And you're not shallow; I pick up books because they catch my eye at Borders, too... :)

sognatrice said...

What a great challenge! Since it takes so long for me to get books here, I may be a little delayed in completing it, but I will. As coincidence would have it, I ordered two books on Iraq a few days ago :)

Adrienne said...

Oh, I like this challenge! I think I'll give this one a try. :) I'll post to my blog which ones I pick up when I decide this weekend.

softdrink said...

Mack - you're just now realizing what a dork I am?

sognatrice and adrienne - I'm looking forward to seeing your lists!

dave said...

okay, you don't know me from adam, but i tried ines of my soul a few months ago and it was so anachronistic and - frankly - kind of boring. one of my favorite books my a latin american write is the feast of the goat, by mario vargas llosa. just a thought... i do know some people in my book club who liked ines, so just my two cents.

softdrink said...

Hey Dave - Thanks for the recommendation (and the warning)...I'll have to check out Feast of the Goat. And we'll see how I do with Ines.

In a real sense, people who have read good literature have lived more than people who cannot or will not read. It is not true that we have only one life to live; if we can read, we can live as many more lives and as many kinds of lives as we wish. ~S.I. Hayakawa

The World is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page.
~St. Augustine

Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness.
~Mark Twain

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