The 2016 reading race gave me a bad handicap known as the Slump, which is quite surprising because I usually go through such phases during the middle of the year. In previous years, I was usually enthusiastic about planning what books I’d like to read for the year. Like last year, I planned to read NBCC winners. Of course I failed at it but I really don’t see it that way because I’ve been able to read other books. It’s not like I didn’t read anything; I was merely sidetracked by equally good books.
Now that it’s a new year, I can put the NBCC plan back into action, yes? Well, I have another reading plan set up this year but before I babble about that, let me tell you about the number of books that I’ve finished last month. It’s a grand total of zero. Yep, I’m still at the starting point. In fact, I only started reading again last week since November. So that’s roughly two months since I last finished a book.
Actually, I wasn’t really not reading. I tried to reread Michel Faber’s The Book of Strange New Things for our book discussion last month, which I moderated and which I happened to finish last November. But since it was still fresh in my head, I just didn’t have the heart to reread it. I might end up getting exhausted with it, not to mention that I went through another phase of anxiety and restlessness, so I just gave up and waited until our book discussion was held.
And so after our book discussion, I introduced this very original reading challenge to our group called TFG Book Bingo. You know, that game where you mark out squares until you form a linear pattern? Hah. Anyway, I’ll be framing my reading plan with it even though we are only challenged to read five books at a minimum. But I want a blackout. So that’s 25 squares, 25 books (we don’t have a “free” square because we’re masochists). Even with my occasional slumps, I should be able to do this. That is, if I manage to fit most of the books that I’ll be reading this year into all those squares.
Speaking, when I got my bingo card, I was elated to see a handful of bingo squares/categories that match the books that I’m itching to read. These books are mostly the new shines that I got during the last quarter of the year. I wish though that I got the bingo square for tomes because I want to read Hanya Yanagihara’s A Little Life. Come on, it was a headliner last year so I’m curious. Anyway, once I get a head start on my bingo card, I’ll post an image of it and probably include it in these monthly reports.
- The Book of Strange New Things by Michel Faber – Doesn’t count but I’d like to put it in here so that this section wouldn’t look lonely. (Well I’ve read around a hundred pages, hee.)
- Preparation for the Next Life by Atticus Lish – On page 204 of 417. My gosh, this book has harrowing and hilarious parts. I’m nervous at how it will end because I feel that it’s not going to be happy one and that it’s going to break me.
- The Narrow Road to the Deep North by Richard Flanagan – On page 61 of 448. Why do I feel that the rest of the book has already been summarized in the first part? I hope there would be a lot to look forward to in the next four parts.
New Books – I’m retiring this section from Book Reports since my new books are getting their own posts under the Ex Libris category.
Hopefully I get to review books as soon as I finish them. Yeah, right. I’ll try my best. Oh I wish I could just whip up reviews without being too self-conscious about them.