Blog Hops and Other Memes / Challenges

It’s Monday, What are You Reading?

mondayIt’s Monday! is a weekly meme hosted by Sheila at Book Journey.

I’ve spent most of the last three weeks reading Storm of Swords, the third book in George R.R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire series.  I also read Please Look After Mom, by Korean author Kyung-Sook Shin (review here).

Right now I’m reading What is the What, by Dave Eggers.  This is a novel based on the life of Valentino Achak Deng, a refugee from Sudan who was one of the “Lost Boys” – children who were orphaned during civil war in Sudan in the 80’s and 90’s and had to walk hundreds of miles to find refuge.  It’s a compelling read written in a unique voice.  I know next to nothing about Sudan, which is why I’m reading this book for the Giraffe Days’ Around the World in Twelve Books Challenge.  I’ve also never read anything by Eggers before, and I figured he’s a writer I ought to try.

In the next month, I’ve committed to one review request (How Angels Die by David-Michael Harding), one NetGalley (The Best of All Possible Worlds by Karen Lord), and one classic for the Classics Club (On the Road by Jack Kerouac).  You might be interested to know that io9’s Book Club will be discussing Karen Lord’s book on March 5.

I’m also excited about the latest Mercy Thompson book, Frost Burned by Patricia Briggs, coming out March 5.

In other book news, you might want to check out the announcement of the Nebula Award nominees posted on John Scalzi’s blog.  The novels don’t look terribly interesting to me, although I would like to read Mary Robinette Kowal one of these days.  There’s a fantasy/SF take on Jane Eyre, which looks dreadful to me, but then Jane Eyre and I have never been friends.

February Update on Challenges: I completed two reviews for the TBR Pile Challenge, and started one book for the Around the World Challenge.

So that’s what I’m reading.  What about you?

11 thoughts on “It’s Monday, What are You Reading?

  1. You have some great stuff coming up! I’ve never read On The Road and I simply HAVE to one of these days!

    Enjoy your books and have a great week!

    • Thanks for visiting! I’ll let you know about On the Road — not feeling great about reading it, given the other comments, but I’m willing to try. At least if my expectations are low they can only be exceeded.

  2. I have What is the What on my shelves. I even started reading it once and enjoyed what I read, but it got laid aside for one reason or the other. I’ve watched a few documentaries about the Lost Boys of Sudan and find myself totally fascinated by their plight. Looking forward to your thoughts on the book and hoping I’ll be inspired to pick it back up. 🙂

    • What is the What is really great so far. I love the way Eggers compares life in U.S. to life in Sudan — even with all the horror in Sudan it’s not clear whose world is more violent. And we have so little appreciation for what we have. Sad.

  3. I am seeing more and more of George R. R. Martin’s books about – I think it is about time I picked one up to see what all the hype is about! I hope it is a good book.

    I recently finished reading On The Road by Kerouac and I am finding it incredibly difficult to review as it was just such an annoying book. My dilemma is that I am trying to define if it was the style of writing or some of the characters I disliked the most! I would however say read it and see how you get on – I look forward to seeing what you think about it 😀

    • Thanks for visiting! Wow, sorry to hear that about On the Road, but unfortunately your view seems to be consistent with others. Maybe this book is too dated to be relevant today? I guess I’ll see.

      • I think you maybe right that it is dated however that doesn’t usually bother me as it was expected Dean was my main problem but I will say no more!

        No problem don’t be a stranger over here! 😀

  4. I was really interested in reading Ironskin at first because I love Jane Eyre, but I keep hearing mostly negative or “okay” things about it so I’ve let it go for now. But I do have Jemisin’s The Killing Moon to read – I’ve been really loving her Inheritance Trilogy so I got TKM as soon as I could, I don’t even know what it’s about!

    I’m reading What is the What right now too, just started it actually and haven’t got far yet. This is my 4th Sudan book this month and I’m loving how fleshed-out my understanding of the country is getting from reading all these different perspectives.

    I tried reading On the Road in first year uni (not for uni; my flatmate had a copy) but I didn’t get very far at the time – it seemed like such a “guy” book and I just wasn’t interested. But I had a similar experience with The Great Gatsby and then loved it when I re-read it last year, so it could just be a right-time-right-place (or right age) kind of thing.

    I read the first Mercy Thompson book several years ago and enjoyed it, but I never got around with continuing the series. I figure it’s one I can come back to sometime. 🙂

    • What is the What is really good — I love learning about something new and my knowledge of world events is so limited. That’s why your challenge is perfect for me. This is not an easy read but the way it’s written really keeps you engaged, and I know I’ll want to learn more about Sudan when I’m done.

      The Mercy Thompson series gets better as the characters developed, so if you like the first one I’d keep reading.

      Another “no” vote for On the Road — at least my expectations won’t be too high!

  5. How did you find Storm of Swords. I loved it, thought it was by far the best in the series so far and completely shocking! I’m saving book four for next month, I only have two left to read now and want to space them out a bit…

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