Read-A-Thon

My Spin Pick: Grapes of Wrath

I’ve only read one work by John Steinbeck: Of Mice and Men. I have never cried as hard or as long as when I read the final chapters of that book. John Steinbeck is famous for his depressing plots, so I need to be in the right head-space to read Grapes of Wrath.

Nevertheless, I am excited to pick it up in the next week. Grapes of Wrath has been on my physical TBR for many years. My edition was given to me by a high school teacher before she retired.

Here is what Goodreads has to say about the book:

Image result for grapes of wrath"

First published in 1939, Steinbeck’s Pulitzer Prize-winning epic of the Great Depression chronicles the Dust Bowl migration of the 1930s and tells the story of one Oklahoma farm family, the Joads—driven from their homestead and forced to travel west to the promised land of California. Out of their trials and their repeated collisions against the hard realities of an America divided into Haves and Have-Nots evolves a drama that is intensely human yet majestic in its scale and moral vision, elemental yet plainspoken, tragic but ultimately stirring in its human dignity. A portrait of the conflict between the powerful and the powerless, of one man’s fierce reaction to injustice, and of one woman’s stoical strength, the novel captures the horrors of the Great Depression and probes into the very nature of equality and justice in America. At once a naturalistic epic, captivity narrative, road novel, and transcendental gospel, Steinbeck’s powerful landmark novel is perhaps the most American of American Classics.

The Great Depression is an era that I don’t know much about. Hopefully, this work will inspire me to learn more about this important time in American history.

___________________

The Reading Spin challenge is hosted quarterly by the Classics Club blog.

Read-A-Thon

Bout of Books 24 (Jan 7-13)

 Bout of Books 24In an effort to be more involved in the blogging community, I will be participating in Bout of Books 24. This is a week-long reading event that starts on Monday, January 7 and ends on Sunday, January 13.

My goal for this readathon is to finish Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell by Susanna Clarke. This 782-page behemoth follows two magicians: Mr. Norrell and his student Jonathan Strange.

Image result for jonathan strange book

I am deeply enjoying this book so far. Fantasies that revolve around wizards and the history of magic are my favorite. And Clarke is so good at imitating 19th-century prose that I have thought more than once that I was reading something by Dickens. If I finish this work by the 13th, I will be very pleased with myself.

If I manage to finish that before Sunday, I will begin What You Are Getting Wrong About Appalachia by Elizabeth Catte.

Image result for what you are getting wrong about appalachia

Having lived in Kentucky for 6 years, I am interested in learning more about Appalachia and the people who live there. When Hillbilly Elegy came out, I was excited to read it. Unfortunately, J. D. Vance blames the poor for their problems and sympathizes uncritically with Trump supporters. No thank you! Catte’s book promises to challenge Vance’s most controversial claims and to give a short, but realistic portrait of one of the poorest regions in the United States.

These are my plans for Bout of Books 24. What are your plans?

___________________

The Bout of Books read-a-thon is organized by Amanda Shofner and Kelly Rubidoux Apple. It is a week long read-a-thon that begins 12:01am Monday, January 7th and runs through Sunday, January 13th in whatever time zone you are in. Bout of Books is low-pressure. There are challenges, giveaways, and a grand prize, but all of these are completely optional. For all Bout of Books 24 information and updates, be sure to visit the Bout of Books blog. – From the Bout of Books team

Read-A-Thon

End of Bout of Books 10

Bout of BooksThis was my first time participating in the Bout of Books Read-A-Thon. I planned to complete three books: A Tale of Two Cities, The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, and The War of the Worlds. However, I only managed to finish the first two. I read a lot during this past week, but I sorely underestimated the length and density of Dickens’ work. This was my second reading of A Tale of Two Cities. The first time was in eighth grade (I was that kid), but I missed so much the first time I read it. A review is forthcoming, but I will say here that I really enjoyed the book. I would like to thank Laura @Reading in Bed for hosting the read-a-long of A Tale of Two Cities and Amanda @ On a Book Bender for hosting  Bout of Books 10.