reading sketchbook |eleanor.

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I read Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine by Gail Honeyman about a month and a half back–I actually listened to it and the reader’s voices were incredible. The Scottish brogues really brought this story to life in ways I wouldn’t have experienced if I simply read the book.

I’m featuring this entry in my Reading Sketchbook because, for the first time in a good while, this was a read I just simply didn’t want to end.

What are you reading? What should I put on my To Be Read list?

More from my reading sketchbook here.

summer | read.

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This was me, literally all summer. I avoided a laptop for 8 weeks (minus prepping for one conference presentation) and dove headlong, all day, into books. My best friend and pooch, Jackie B. Lee, joined me in all those stories and relaxation.

As a result, the only knitting projects I got to this summer were three kind of matching, scrappy, striped sweaters for my nephews. I read so many great stories. You can see what I was reading at my reading sketchbook here.

Any recommendations for me to read this fall?

sketchbook | reading journal.

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Here’s another entry in my Reading Sketchbook. I love that I’ve kept up with this little project of tracking my reads. Here’s what I record:

Page length, completion date, how long to complete, whether it is an owned book, a library book, a kindle book, an audio book, or something completed in the serial reader app, whether I loved it or hated it (often “liked”), whether it fulfills a reading challenge selection, was it a recommendation, and my thoughts/musings on the experience and story.

It has kept my reading grounded and moving forward. I love to look back and reads and recall certain details about the book and to remember when I finished it and how long it took.

Here’s, also, a peak inside my books completed shelf in my tracking journal. I’ve kind of become obsessed with tracking what I make, when I knit, when I read, how long I read for, and what books I’ve finished. I’m hoping, when I feel like I’m not finding creative space or down time, I can look back on this and realize when and where I was able to fit it in.

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What should I add to my to be read list?

See more of my tracking journal here. And my reading journal here. Oh, and of course, there’s a knitting journal, too.

read | challenge 2017.

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In 2017, I agreed to take on a Reading Challenge. I don’t normally participate in those kinds of things because I like to read what I want, when I want, but this one seemed interesting and reasonable and maybe a challenge is good for me.

The 2017 challenge prompted a read every two weeks or 24 books on the year in various categories, including a book translated from another language, one from childhood, one from school days, something more than 500 pages, a book that takes place somewhere you traveled that year…and on.

I started off slow–my first read was Tolstoy’s classic War and Peace, a 1300 page sweeping epic that actually took me well over 2 weeks to complete. And so, I got behind. I picked up steam in the summer, reading well more than a book every two weeks. But, still, it wasn’t enough to make up with starting a new job and picking a number of 500+ page novels.

I came really close. I missed completing the challenge by 5 books. And it prompted me to start a reading journal, in which I keep track of everything I read, when I read it, how long it took me, whether it was a library book, a kindle book, or a book I own, and some general musings on what I liked or didn’t like about it. I’m pleased it pushed me to really start keeping track of my reads in a unique way, and I’ll carry on.

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How do you keep track of the books you read? Do you at all? I never used to. And so, in this space, I’m going to also keep track of that process, too. Because this blog, while I hope I have a reader or two, has been a great long term companion to me, my makes, my likes, my pursuits.

See more (a sample) from my reading journal here. 

 

bed / knitting.

Multiple days of snow (yes another two days, starting now and into tomorrow…and again, on Monday apparently) means tucking into bed early with books and knits. It’s the only way.

These will be a pair of socks I’ve so fittingly named cabin fever. Cheers to winter.

books.

I always have a whole bunch of books on my bedside table. I’m currently reading Stephen King’s The Stand and figured I would never finish it in a timely manner unless I was exclusive with its pages.

And so, these continue to sit. They are all books I’ve had time with before–but I love, love, love re-reads. You get so much out of them. Desert Blooms, a lovely little guide book Sean bought for me last summer on our camping trip to Utah, is always with me. I think I have it wherever I go.

What books are kicking around on your bedside?

mastering.

For years, I’ve been wanting copies of Mastering the Art of French Cooking by the amazing Julia Child and Simone Beck. One of the perks of being a school librarian means occasionally scoring items like these when you are conducting a massive weed. My school was once an all girls school, which I think accounts for the giant cooking section, even though we don’t offer cooking classes here. These beauties were on the chopping block–and hadn’t been checked out since 1988. So away they went, and into my hands.

I’m so excited to be a proud new owner.

read.

It was pretty ratty flying around Thanksgiving. The hoards of people. But, at least there’s plane ride reading. I read Terms of Endearment over the break. It was a pretty depressing novel; haven’t seen the movie. You should read some Larry McMurtry in your lifetime, though. You won’t regret it.

new reads.

Nothing better than that feeling when you start a new book. I’ve never seen this film, nor dived into the written work, so it seemed like a fitting time.

What are you reading? Suggestions for my never ending list?

books.

Pre-ordering additions to my Penguin Clothbound Classics collection is the most exciting thing. But what’s more exciting is the fact that you forget when you place preorders, wait months on end, only to be completely surprised when new ones arrive on your doorstep like book fairies.

These really are the most gorgeous books on the market and for sure are a statement piece for home decor. I need a bookshelf just for these books alone. They deserve it.

summer reading.

It’s all about lazing on the porch or the dock with book after book after book in summer. Well, that’s my version of bliss, anyway. Right now, I’m knee deep in this epic tale, Lonesome Dove by Larry McMurtry. I’ve read a few others, but this is his swan song, I suppose.