Friday, May 15, 2020

10 Books of Summer via 746 Books

This bookish challenge runs June 1 through September 1. Technically it could be 20 books of summer or 15 books or 10. It's up to the reader. Given the way 2020 has been going, I'm aiming with caution.

So here's to my summer of cautious anticipation...

  • Brontรซ: The Tenant of Wildfell Hall (one more try...)
  • McCullers: The Heart is a Lonely Hunter
  • Brown: Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee
  • Wells: Crusade for Justice: The Autobiography of Ida B. Wells
  • Dinesen: Out of Africa (one more try, too...)
  • Equiano: The Interesting Narrative and Other Writings
  • Haley: Roots
  • Turner: These is My Words
  • Robinson: Gilead
  • Bergreen: Over the Edge of the World
and one for good luck...
  • Tan: The Joy Luck Club

I'm actually kind of excited to read these books. Have you read any, and which are your favorites? What are you hoping to read this summer? 


  1. Lots of great titles here! I'd love to play and as ever lose in this summer game, but first I'd need a blog. :P

    Krysta at Pages Unbound wrote a little post on The Tenant of Wildfell Hall over at her blog. (I'd link but then this would go to spam since I also link below. Youshould be able to Google. They run the Classic Remarks meme over there, which might be just your thing. The post on The Tenant of Wildfell Hall was for that meme.) She explains why it's her favorite by the Brontes.

    I love Out of Africa. I have a biography of Isak Dineson in my list. I find her writing haunting. Look at this: (You may have already seen the film, but my it is gorgeous.)

    Hemingway said Dineson should have won the Nobel prize the year he won it. They both wrote on their travels in Africa. She was so pleased with his endorsement she claimed it meant more than the Nobel Prize would have. They'd never met, but each read the other's work. :)

    (Which will mean little if you don't care for Hemingway, ha ha. He's a favorite of mine. Also, I believe he also said that two other writers should have won. 'Twas modesty perhaps, though I can't imagine him saying anything he didn't mean, blunt and rather cranky so he was.) xo

    Also, hello! <3

  2. Oh, that's right, you have seen the movie. Yes, it's very different from that. I read it more like a poetic travelogue. The romance is all but missing, though I believe it's possible to infer some of what she doesn't say (if I recall). That's why I want to read her biography. :) But if you take it as something totally apart from the movie, it's so interesting and gentle and poetic. Far more about her observations than her life. I read it way back in 2010 if I recall, so I may have forgotten large swathes of it. I simply remember finding certain passages truly poetic. And I approve of it being by a woman who felt no need to include romance. x

  3. This is a great list, Ruth! The Heart is a Lonely Hunter is one of my favourite books, I hope you enjoy it. I also like Out of Africa, I've read it years ago and I've been meaning to reread it ever since... Happy Summer reading! :)

  4. JILLIAN: That's what my problem was....I read the book hoping it was like the film (one of my favorites!!!! I love Streep, too.) I'd like to read Dineson's biography. Interesting stuff about Hemingway; I did not know. I just finished A Farewell to Arms, and I liked it to the very end, and then I thought, "Why did you do that, Hemingway?" It was a devastating ending, and I haven't investigated why he did that. But I have to. I need to understand this man.

    So, I will plan to return to Out of Africa and read it separately from the film, from her personal life.

    And I'll check out your resources for Tenant of Wildfell Hall. I do mean to finish it.


  5. Three of these are my favorites -and the only ones I've read-,
    The Heart is a lonely hunter,
    The Joy Luck Club

    Several you mention, I'm also interested in them myself. 'One day', lol

  6. JILLIANA: Oh, good to hear! I am excited to read McCullers' book. And I am prepared to finish Out of Africa this time. Thanks, so much.

  7. SILVIA: Yay! I'm encouraged now to hear that you liked these. I cannot wait to read them.

  8. Out of Africa is one of my all-time favorites! Seems so tragic too ... enjoy your summer books!

  9. This looks like an enjoyable list for summer! Out of Africa and The Tenant of Wildfell Hall are on my TBR. I've heard great things about Robinson's books, too.

    Right now I'm reading Walden (at long, long last). I've kind of abandoned my 2020 list that I so carefully crafted, but it's ok - a little spontaneity keeps the reading momentum going for me. :)

  10. I've not read Out of Africa but I know I'd love it. I did read Joy Luck Club which I rated rather average. I would have preferred tighter editing on it so not quite so long. I've read The Heart is a Lonely Hunter which I really loved. Of the two that would definitely get my vote. 5 start vs 3 star for those two. Good luck with your list. It's a very good list. All the best. ๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿ˜

  11. I love Out of Africa and the Tenant of Wildfell Hall (my favorite Bronte!). I also really enjoyed Equiano's story. I would love to read Ida B. Wells' book!

  12. CUECARD: I'm really encouraged to continue receiving thumbs up for Out of Africa.

    MARIAN: Yay! You are reading Walden. I know Thoreau can be hit or miss w/ some readers. He may come across are arrogant, like a "wise guy," but look beyond that, if you can.

    PENGUIN: I think I read similar reservations about The Joy Luck Club, but I'm holding out hope bc I enjoy the film so much.

    JEAN: Wow, I'm really impressed w/ the popularity of Out of Africa. Good to know. Looking forward to reading Ida B. Wells. She is a fascinating woman. If it works out to be a good read, I will definitely be sure to encourage others to read her books.

  13. Way back in college I took an entire course focused on Isak Dinesen (Karen Blixen). So I've read pretty much everything she wrote. Out of Africa is very different than most of her fiction! It's a long time since I read it though; maybe I should pick it up again.

  14. I love The Tenant of Wildfell Hall! Someday I will reread it. Maybe I will join this challenge, but I am not ready to make a list yet.

  15. BETH: Well, I guess I better get back to reading Tenant ASAP.

  16. Thanks for taking part! Such a great list - I love Carson McCullers. Good luck and happy reading!

  17. This is a very interesting list with McCullers, Dinesen, and Robinson among my favorites. I admire your planning ahead. I'm already committed to a couple of books by Camus, Plato's "Phaedrus", and Kingsolver's Pigs in Heaven. Maybe I can come up with a few more or just wing it.

  18. The only one of these I've read so far is 'The Heart is a Lonely Hunter', and I thought it was a marvellous book. Written in the 1930s, I think McCullers was incredibly percipient in showing the beginnings of the civil rights movement, and hinting at the McCarthyism and increased tolerance for homosexuality yet to come.

  19. CATHY: Thanks!

    JAMES: Again, seeing lots of encouragement for these three authors, making me more eager to get to them. I have not heard of Kingsolver or Pigs in Heaven, but I see it is considered a modern classic, so that may be why. I'm sure you'll think of plenty of other great literature to tackle this summer.

    MICHELLE ANN: Great! Sounds like topics I will enjoy reading about. I considering moving that book to the top of my "what do I read next list," as soon as I'm done w/ my current books. Hard to believe June is literally around the corner.

  20. What a great list. I've just read and reviewed The Tenant of Wildfell and loved it more than I expected to. Anne has such a different theme from her sisters. I loved Gilead when I read it too, and hope to pick up Out of Africa some time soon.

  21. PAULA: BTW, I loved your review of Tenant -- very inspiring. I'm already convinced to keep pushing through. And I am looking forward to Gilead, too.

  22. Another vote for Out of Africa. Completely disconnect it from the movie and I think you'll like it. It would be a great summer read.

    I'm interested to read your review on Gilead. I've had it on my radar but alas, as it's modern I haven't been inspired enough to pick it up yet.

    Your list inspired me to make one of my own with a twist! Happy summer reading!!

  23. CLEO:Yes, that is how I plan to read OOA this time around.
    I'm looking forward to Gilead due to the positive reviews or opinions.
    I like your idea for this project. At least you can switch one out for another, if you are moved to do so.
    Happy Reading to you, too!

  24. Great list! I just read Tenant and I hope you enjoy it your second time around.

    I've read Gilead and I liked it but I don't love Robinson's style the way other readers do, though I've read all her novels now bar Lila, which I will get to.

    I loved The Joy Luck Club when I first read it and I re-read it a few years ago and feel it still holds up. Sure, it is a little baggy in places, but it is a debut so I forgive that. And it is a wonderful book about mothers and daughters. I gave it to my mom for Mother's Day way back when.

  25. RUTHIELLA: I haven't completed Tenant just yet. I stopped in the middle somewhere, and I need to pick it up again and finish it. But I am very encouraged by what everyone else says.

  26. I really liked The Tennant; I have Lila by Robinson & hope to get to it soon but I haven't read anything else by her. I read a children's edition of Equiano aloud to my kids years ago & Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee before I was married. I loaned it to someone & never saw it again otherwise I would re-read it as I remember it being quite powerful...I think?? Have no idea about any of the others. :)

  27. CAROL: Had no idea there is a children's edition of Equiano, and I am really surprised; but I'm glad for it. I cannot wait to read Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee. Sorry you did not get your copy back. One of a book lover's conundrum!

  28. I've read many of those. Joy Luck Club gets my vote for #1. Have a good summer of reading.

  29. I remember reading These is My Words long, long ago, and loving it. Hope you do, too.

  30. LISA: I love the film (Joy Luck Club), so I hope to enjoy the book, too.

    DEB: Glad to meet someone who even knows this book! I was really excited to find it and thought it sounded interesting. But that's all I'm going on.

  31. The Joy Luck Club is such a delightful read - love a good angsty mother/daughter story! TTOWH is one I think you will enjoy if you can make yourself finish it. Bury My Heart is gut-wrenching stuff. I read it over 20 yrs ago and still remember it.

    Dinesen's time in Africa may have been fascinating and her bio enlightening, but Out of Africa (the book) was awful IMHO. I really didn't like her at all by the end.

    Good luck with the rest :-)

  32. BRONA: Thanks for your input. It will be interesting to see how I respond to Dinesen when I am through with her book.

  33. Realistic caution isn't a bad thing - I'd say this sounds like a good list. I've only read The Heart is a Lonely Hunter, and so long ago that I don't really remember it that well, but most of these are books on my TBR list. Enjoy!