Your Favorite Author?


It takes a while to discover which authors you might call ‘favorites.’ I, for one, tend to bounce from book to book, rarely lingering on a single author unless they wrote classics. Charles Dickens has been a favorite author of mine from the start—I read A Christmas Carol every Christmas Eve!—but apart from him, I … Continue reading Your Favorite Author?

The Written World by Martin Puchner


On the surface, The Written World looks to be a history book on the topic of literature. I discovered it was something deeper, far more delightful. Author Martin Puchner has a love for books much like my own; this book is his journey to find the soul of literature, the source of her power, the … Continue reading The Written World by Martin Puchner

The Pickwick Papers by Charles Dickens


After one month in its pages, I have finished The Pickwick Papers. It is part of my 2019 Classic Novel Challenge, one of the longer ones on the list. I'm unable to critique writing by my favorite author. How can I nitpick the gripping prose, the humorous twists and turns, the delightful poetry? I cannot … Continue reading The Pickwick Papers by Charles Dickens

The Mayor of Casterbridge by Thomas Hardy


The first book I read for my 2019 reading challenge, The Mayor of Casterbridge, is compelling because of its characters. Though there are many, it focuses on a man named Michael Henchard, a man none of us would envy. It is the story of a mistake he made as a young man and how this mistake … Continue reading The Mayor of Casterbridge by Thomas Hardy

The 2019 Reading List


In this post, I spoke about my New Year's Resolution: to read 30 classic novels—or at least attempt to read them—in order to work through my bookshelf. Collecting books is a beautiful thing, but that's only half the fun; the magic is in reading them! I said I would post my reading list when it … Continue reading The 2019 Reading List

Around the Literary World in a Year


A new year always brings with it pressure to come up with a resolution. Though setting goals often feels like a trend, I don't like ignoring a clean slate. I don't plan to do anything mind-blowing this year, but I know where I hope to be when roaring 2020 comes in. Writing-wise, 2019 will see … Continue reading Around the Literary World in a Year

David Copperfield: Escapism and Books


Charles Dickens' David Copperfield is, in many respects, autobiographical. Readers see the protagonist in bleak situations, many of which take root in things the author himself experienced--child abuse, poverty, instances when it was difficult to count one's blessings. As a reader and writer, the following paragraph stood out to me. It describes Copperfield as a … Continue reading David Copperfield: Escapism and Books

Suicide Notes from Beautiful Girls by Lynn Weingarten


Suicide Notes from Beautiful Girls--the book title was clever. I'm not sure what I expected to find once I started reading. This is a good thing. Any book title is used to draw readers in: it makes them want to lift the cover and glance at the first page, where there should be a hook. … Continue reading Suicide Notes from Beautiful Girls by Lynn Weingarten

On Dusty Bookshelves


Last year in August, I started a reading journal. It is literally a list of books I read and when I finish them. As the list started to grow over passing weeks, I realized that when I pay attention--real attention--to what a book is saying, there is a lot between the lines that a skim … Continue reading On Dusty Bookshelves

3 Reasons I Want to Read Slowly


A while back, I was obsessed with learning to speed-read. I tried all these iPhone apps that supposedly help you read faster. I timed myself whenever I opened a book. I gave up on those weird apps almost at once, but over time did learn to speed-read. Though I'm not the fastest reader I know, … Continue reading 3 Reasons I Want to Read Slowly