Monday, June 11, 2007

The Summer Reading Challenge

I'm several days late in getting my summer reading list together, but I'm pleased as punch with my choices so far. Summer is always a jumble of reading opportunities. I have a yard that demands much of my time, we continue our schooling through July, and there are plenty of home improvement projects awaiting me. But, I do have a week of family vacation that results in some good reading time, and my husband and I are also getting ourselves ready for the shocking reality of a five-day vacation for our anniversary. Five days off without children...I cannot even imagine it...but I am beginning to compile a stack of possible books to tuck in the suitcase. I'll update the list as it grows or shrinks.

If you'd like to join the Summer Reading Challenge, let the fine lady at Seasonal Soundings know you're joining in the fun. FYI: That fine lady is on our vacation itinerary in a few weeks. I can hardly wait to meet my pen-pal cyber-friend in person.

Experiencing the Depths of Jesus Christ: The Autobiography of Madame Guyon

Recommended by a friend from church.

The Gathering Storm by Winston Churchill

My daughter is reading Churchill this summer, and I thought I would join in on the first volume of his World War II series.

History of the Ancient World by Susan Wise Bauer

I'm going to be teaching a handful of youngsters some ancient history next year, and I've been wanting to read Susan's latest work, so I'm off and running.

The Aeneid by Virgil

I'm preparing to discuss this with my Great Books 2 student in the fall.

The Bridal Wreath by Sigrid Undset

The Kirstin Lavransdatter trilogy has been on my "gotta read" list for long enough. I'm enjoying this first book very much.

The Complete Father Brown, Volume One by G.K. Chesterton

My Chesterton choice for this season, plus part of my mystery fix.

Espresso Tales by Alexander McCall Smith

Found at the library last week, the word Espresso jumped out, and I had checked it out before I even realized it was a Alexander McCall Smith book. Then I checked my adopted niece's blog (The Autumn Rain) and found a quote from the very same book. I'll be in good company as I enjoy some fun, light reading on a summer afternoon.

Great Expectations by Charles Dickens

I will finish it...I will, I will.

The Shifting Tide by Anne Perry

Part B of the mystery fix.

Magazines I am happy to have time to read this summer:

The Economist

I've decided I want to participate in the extemporaneous category with our speech students this coming year. How does extemp. work? You have half an hour to prepare a seven minute speech, and you are given three possible topics, all of which will be about some current event issue. Your evidence for the background or opinions must be current (within the last ninety days) and the more current the better. Sound challenging? I was truly inspired when I listened to a round of extempers at a tournament this last spring.

Success in this event requires a regular focus on current events, something that I have been very crummy at in the last few years. We've already been discussing more of the issues around the dinner table, but I will have to work hard to understand the background for the possible question topics. Immigration, the '08 presidential candidates and the war in Iraq are only a sample of topics that I have to learn much more about to be able to help our students. Thus, my regular reading of The Economist...and more.

And finally, two additional magazines from which to glean wisdom:

First Things


I'd ask you what you are reading, but I know, don't I? I keep working on those links, and I'll have Part the Second by the end of the week.

Happy Reading!

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