Just a little randomness today.
I had my last class today, and while I am still finishing a couple of books that we discussed, I feel a little freer now that I know I don't have a reading list to attend to. I still have a reading list of sorts, but it is a mental one and with no deadlines. I am going to miss going to class every Wednesday, but I have a stack of class-inspired books (mostly by Israeli authors, but not exclusively) to keep me going for a while that I will have to share here soon.
I have all sorts of summer reading ideas in mind and a few projects, which I will get sorted out in the next few days. A couple of months ago I was planning on picking a new classic to read and had a stack of potential books I was all ready to choose from and begin reading, but in the end I decided I had too much going on and would wait until my reading life was a little more settled. Hopefully the dust will be settling now and I can think of picking one up again. At the moment I am leaning towards a shorter novel or novella and maybe a reread by a favorite author. Kate Chopin? Willa Cather? Maybe E.M. Forster? I am definitely ready for some classic literature again.
Although my reading is all over the place (and April has been an abysmal reading month with a mere three books finished . . . unless I can squeeze in one last finish today), I am going to focus on catching up and clearing out. And reining in my crazy reading pattern a bit more. Starting And finishing and not just starting.
Do you ever get those Great Courses catalogs? It is unlikely I will be taking another literature class this year (as there are no lit classes that appeal to me greatly this coming fall), so I was thinking I might do a self-guided sort of class. I could do a Masterpieces of Short Fiction and read along with the lectures--the story first and then the lecture. How about Medieval Heroines in History and Legend? I like the sound of The Secret Life of Words and there is even a new course on King Arthur. I always look and consider but I have never made a commitment to try. I'm a little hesitant to buy one as what if you end up not liking the presentation of the course lecturer? Or their voice or their teaching style? I would only pick a streaming audio file so I could listen while stitching or on my daily walks. I might give one that is on sale a try.
I had a few Audible credits I had to use up--I have canceled my subscription for the time being as I was getting credits faster than I could use them. I need to try and listen to my audio books more regularly now that the weather has been so cooperative. (Has your weather been as nice as mine?). One of the books picked is Helen Macdonald's H is for Hawk. Wow--for once I chose wisely! The author reads her own work and not only is it well written, but it is so interesting (could reading about hawks be very engrossing I wondered?--apparently so), and she is a perfect reader. It is completely engaging to listen to and now I am thinking I might have to own the book--read it when I finish listening. If you have any interest in it--nudge nudge--it is worth getting it in hardcover even!
Does anyone know when the CWA Daggers longlists will be announced? I see that they are now sharing lists of the book entries. The Edgar winners were announced tonight, so I will be seeing if there are any potential reads amongst the winners or nominees. I do have at least one on my reading pile at the moment. Stephen King won Best Novel for his book Mr. Mercedes. I wouldn't mind trying to track down the short story nominees. The Agatha Awards will be announced this weekend at the Malice Domestic convention. They apparently must not share their nominees, so it will be a surprise to see who wins.
One more note of temptation. Did you see that the new Persephone Books titles were just released? I'm especially interested in London War Notes by Mollie Panter-Downes, who is a favorite author. I will definitely be adding it to my collection of Persephones.
Is it just me or does it feel like it should be Friday? Wishful thinking. I am ready to spend quiet time with my books, can you tell?