Jun 26

books beach

Okay, I admit it. I’m probably not going to get through four classics this Summer. I think I was a little ambitious in my planning. Work reading is taking up the bulk of my time right now. I’m still reading Moby Dick when I’ve got a spare moment, and will be taking it with me on vacation (to the beach) next weekend. But it looks like I’ll be sticking to the true letter of the reading challenge rules and reading at least ONE book from Beowulf on the Beach. (Though I’d really still love to get to Great Expectations this summer…)

All that being said, I know I’m not alone. For one thing, I keep asking Ann how she’s doing with War and Peace and, oddly, she always changes the subject. And then, there’s this article from The New Yorker’s Book Bench column, which says that most people’s major summer reading projects are destined to fail.

What about the rest of you? Use the comments section below to let me know how goes the challenge.

In the meantime, here’s this week’s video of Jack reading a favorite line, this time from King Lear.

[If you click through to the New Yorker article you’ll notice that I “borrowed” the image they used to illustrate their column. It was just too perfect to pass up! Thanks so much to Joseph Robertson for taking such a great photo and for posting it on flickr!)
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  • Tanya

    I wasn’t going to count “Wuthering Heights” (by Emily Bronte) because I read t before the Challenge began; but while I was waiting for the print copy of BOTB to arrive, I dnloaded the Kindle version and applied it to WH, writing a new set of notes, “working” the text in a different way; so now I’m going to count it.

    I’m just about to wrap up “Jane Eyre” (by Charlotte Bronte) this week. I’ll probably write my notes on it while I read an interstitial fluff piece and then head into “Madame Bovary” (by Gustave Flaubert) at the beginning of July.

    I’m taking “Madame Bovary” and “Pere Goriot” (by Honore de Balzac) on vacation with me and then I’ll have all of August to read “Great Expectations” (by Charles Dickens.)

    I deliberately avoided the heavier tomes for the challenge, though I may tackle a couple of the Russian novels over the Winter (after all, going to the beach in the winter has its own appeal as well!)

  • Tanya

    I wasn’t going to count “Wuthering Heights” (by Emily Bronte) because I read t before the Challenge began; but while I was waiting for the print copy of BOTB to arrive, I dnloaded the Kindle version and applied it to WH, writing a new set of notes, “working” the text in a different way; so now I’m going to count it.

    I’m just about to wrap up “Jane Eyre” (by Charlotte Bronte) this week. I’ll probably write my notes on it while I read an interstitial fluff piece and then head into “Madame Bovary” (by Gustave Flaubert) at the beginning of July.

    I’m taking “Madame Bovary” and “Pere Goriot” (by Honore de Balzac) on vacation with me and then I’ll have all of August to read “Great Expectations” (by Charles Dickens.)

    I deliberately avoided the heavier tomes for the challenge, though I may tackle a couple of the Russian novels over the Winter (after all, going to the beach in the winter has its own appeal as well!)

  • Suzanne

    I just finished volume 2 of Proust’s In Search of Lost Time/Remembrance of Things Past. Volume 3 looks like it will take me through the rest of the summer.
    Loved Beowulf on the Beach’s chapter on this book

  • Suzanne

    I just finished volume 2 of Proust’s In Search of Lost Time/Remembrance of Things Past. Volume 3 looks like it will take me through the rest of the summer.
    Loved Beowulf on the Beach’s chapter on this book

  • It isn’t on the the list, but I’m about to finish David Copperfield. Then on the Ulysses, then War and Peace. Knopf’s reading group is making this all possible- it’s nice to be reading big books slowly with a group of others. I’ll add Brothers Karamazov to the list, and will be astonished if I read all four.

  • It isn’t on the the list, but I’m about to finish David Copperfield. Then on the Ulysses, then War and Peace. Knopf’s reading group is making this all possible- it’s nice to be reading big books slowly with a group of others. I’ll add Brothers Karamazov to the list, and will be astonished if I read all four.

  • I just started Beowulf last night so let’s hope I make it through to the end.

    I still haven’t picked up The Grapes of Wrath to read. Hopefully I can get to it soon.

  • I just started Beowulf last night so let’s hope I make it through to the end.

    I still haven’t picked up The Grapes of Wrath to read. Hopefully I can get to it soon.

  • I started the challenge intending just to read one classic—Jane Eyre, which I should finish tonight—but I’m going to add at least one more. I loved One Hundred Years of Solitude when I read it several years ago, and Murnighan’s raving about it made me want to revisit it.

    I finished Beowulf on the Beach earlier this week and will post my review this weekend. Thanks again for hosting this great challenge!

  • I started the challenge intending just to read one classic—Jane Eyre, which I should finish tonight—but I’m going to add at least one more. I loved One Hundred Years of Solitude when I read it several years ago, and Murnighan’s raving about it made me want to revisit it.

    I finished Beowulf on the Beach earlier this week and will post my review this weekend. Thanks again for hosting this great challenge!

  • Haven’t read any classics yet, although I hope to get to at least one. I’m glad of the challenge, though, as it will motivate me.

    [The whole “summer reading” concept (lists, etc.) drives me a bit crazy because many of us don’t necessarily get big swaths of time off in the summer, so there’s really *less* time for reading than in other months because we’re outside doing things. . .]

  • Haven’t read any classics yet, although I hope to get to at least one. I’m glad of the challenge, though, as it will motivate me.

    [The whole “summer reading” concept (lists, etc.) drives me a bit crazy because many of us don’t necessarily get big swaths of time off in the summer, so there’s really *less* time for reading than in other months because we’re outside doing things. . .]

  • Wow! You guys are putting me to shame! Great work everyone!

    And what a great review you wrote Rebecca. Thanks for talking about the book and the reading challenge!

    I do know what you mean Laura… I’ve got one week of vacation this Summer. There’s a lot of reading to pack into that one week!

  • Wow! You guys are putting me to shame! Great work everyone!

    And what a great review you wrote Rebecca. Thanks for talking about the book and the reading challenge!

    I do know what you mean Laura… I’ve got one week of vacation this Summer. There’s a lot of reading to pack into that one week!

  • I am reading MiddleMarch and I am on page 467 of 912. So that puts me at BOOK V. I should finish sometime next month

  • I am reading MiddleMarch and I am on page 467 of 912. So that puts me at BOOK V. I should finish sometime next month

  • I read classics so often these days, in between more contemporary literature, that it doesn’t need much fanfare anymore. Three years ago, when I started reading the major classics one by one it seemed important. Nowadays I aim to fill in the gaps by reading the slightly more obscure classic reads. By that, I mean the famous books every literature major knows of but most random people don’t.

    It’s interesting, though, to see how other people plan their reads. I’d like to read “Beowulf on the Beach” (though I suspect I may disagree with some of the assessments, which seems normal); it seems to have sparked a lot of interesting discussions and personal goals.

  • I read classics so often these days, in between more contemporary literature, that it doesn’t need much fanfare anymore. Three years ago, when I started reading the major classics one by one it seemed important. Nowadays I aim to fill in the gaps by reading the slightly more obscure classic reads. By that, I mean the famous books every literature major knows of but most random people don’t.

    It’s interesting, though, to see how other people plan their reads. I’d like to read “Beowulf on the Beach” (though I suspect I may disagree with some of the assessments, which seems normal); it seems to have sparked a lot of interesting discussions and personal goals.

  • I’ve started a reading list with DailyLit.com which has every classic you can think of and will email (or RSS feed) you a bit of it every day. We can all spend 5 minutes a day reading great lit, right? I’m on installment number 34 of Anna Karenina right now.(BTW, you can get the next installment instantly if you just can’t wait ’til the next day.) It may take me SEVERAL summers to get through the book at this pace, but slow but sure gets the job done…

  • I’ve started a reading list with DailyLit.com which has every classic you can think of and will email (or RSS feed) you a bit of it every day. We can all spend 5 minutes a day reading great lit, right? I’m on installment number 34 of Anna Karenina right now.(BTW, you can get the next installment instantly if you just can’t wait ’til the next day.) It may take me SEVERAL summers to get through the book at this pace, but slow but sure gets the job done…

  • Lectrice,
    I’ve heard quite a bit about DailyLit recently, but haven’t yet tried it. It does seem that it would be a great way to read and to really think about a particular book. I may sign up soon. Thanks!

  • Lectrice,
    I’ve heard quite a bit about DailyLit recently, but haven’t yet tried it. It does seem that it would be a great way to read and to really think about a particular book. I may sign up soon. Thanks!

  • I have started Middlemarch and should be done in about a week. Then I’ll start To The Lighthouse and finish up by the end of July. I might pick a third for August but we’ll see how it goes with these two first.

  • I have started Middlemarch and should be done in about a week. Then I’ll start To The Lighthouse and finish up by the end of July. I might pick a third for August but we’ll see how it goes with these two first.

  • Kim

    I read War and Peace a couple of years ago and with a book that size, you need to carry it around and read whenever you can. So many people approached me asking if I was “really reading it.” It ended up being a great conversation started with strangers all over town. Now I tell my single friends, want to meet people, carry around War and Peace.

  • Kim

    I read War and Peace a couple of years ago and with a book that size, you need to carry it around and read whenever you can. So many people approached me asking if I was “really reading it.” It ended up being a great conversation started with strangers all over town. Now I tell my single friends, want to meet people, carry around War and Peace.

  • I hope Ann stays with War and Peace — it’s tremendous fun and perfect for beach reading. I often suggest that first-time W&P readers “specialize” on a few specific characters or plot threads so they won’t get too overwhelmed by all the people and events.

    Maybe this is my summer to finally read Pere Goriot

  • I hope Ann stays with War and Peace — it’s tremendous fun and perfect for beach reading. I often suggest that first-time W&P readers “specialize” on a few specific characters or plot threads so they won’t get too overwhelmed by all the people and events.

    Maybe this is my summer to finally read Pere Goriot

  • Love the picture of the suitcase of books on the beach,

  • Love the picture of the suitcase of books on the beach,

  • shaunk4life

    Recently I was REALLY low on money and debts were eating me from all sides! That was UNTIL I decided to make money on the internet! I went to surveymoneymaker dot net, and started filling in surveys for cash, and surely I’ve been far more able to pay my bills!! I’m so glad, I did this! With all the financial stress these years, I really hope all of you will give it a chance. – admi

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