There's nothing like revisiting plans for a new reading year mid-way through, is there? You can see how much you've adhered (or veered off as the case may be) from all those high hopes. I didn't actually make all that many plans for this year, though I really thought I might stick with that list of books I made in anticipation of 2013. And here we are just past the half way mark of of 2013 (and me not past the halfway mark on that list).
There they all are up above and I still have the pile close at hand. I thought if I didn't put them back on the shelves and was able to see them daily I would be more likely to stick with reading them. I very much enjoyed Kate O'Brien's The Last Summer and Alice McDermott's At Weddings and Wakes as well as Heidi's Alp by Christina Hardyment. And I'm going to remain optimistic that I can read more before the end of the year (a late start/restart?). It's unlikely I'll finish reading them all, but maybe half of them?
To that end I think I will pick one up now to read. Maybe Sarah Waters? Tipping the Velvet is my last unread book by her (maybe she's getting close to finishing writing a new one?). She is consistently good and with its seaside setting (well partially set by the seaside?) it seems a good choice for summer. I think I need to peruse my pile once again--it's been neglected far too long. Of course I also love Daphne du Maurier and it has been far too long since I have read any of her work, too.
I'm quietly working away on my Century of Books. It was never meant to be a project that I finished in just one year, so I will continue to chip away at the list. I think I am up to eighteen books read, though I have not updated the list for a while. I am not including really short novels, or nonfiction and I have had a number of overlaps, so I had to choose one title and leave the other off if they were published in the same year. I seem to have gaping holes in the teens, and mid-1950s through mid-1970s. Interestingly I seem to have read a lot from the 1980s this year.
Although I am falling behind I am doing fairly well with my reading by subscription project. I just started my next NYRB Classic and finished one of my Melville House novellas. Another project to keep chipping away at.
I completely fizzled on Fanny Burney's Camilla. Bad timing? Maybe I should try resurrecting her? Or maybe it's best to leave the book for another time. The less said about my Penguin Food Series project the better. They are short but I just don't seem to be making time for them. And here I thought I would be able to read one a month. Someday I'll feel the urge to reach for them. I still want to get back to Molly Keane. But you know how it goes--there are only so many books you can read in a year and it's impossible to not feel as though you are being pulled in several directions at once!
And for the rest of the year? I want to finish reading The Quincunx by Charles Palliser. I think I am going to join in reading Vikram Seth's A Suitable Boy, which will be a year long project--so it's just a matter of trying to keep up (doesn't that sound easy? In theory anyway). One hundred pages a month and discussion beginning in September? I guess I'll have to pull my copy from the reading pile soon.
Then there are various challenges and readalongs that help 'guide my reading', which I loosely try and follow but don't worry about if I end up not reading everything I set out to. There's a new round of the Canadian Reading Challenge just starting. And there will be RIP in September and October, which I am already thinking about (it's all the cool weather we are experiencing making me think of Autumn--my favorite season). And I am looking forward to Anbolyn's Mary Stewart Reading Week in September. I've been wanting to pick up a book or two by her and this will be my nudge.
And if I end up reading totally different books, that's okay, too. But it's sort of nice trying to recapture that excitement for those reading plans and see if a few can be salvaged.
I know lots of people read at whim, but if you did make plans, how are yours going? Adjusting them? Abandoning them? Or maybe making new plans midway through the year, too? It makes me a little nervous to think of how quickly the year is moving, so, better to think that there is still almost half a year ahead of us (rather than half a year gone).