Sunday, 5 February 2017

Rereadathon #5: Day 1 - Introductory survey

It's here! The Rereadathon is probably my favourite blogging event, and this year I've signed up to co-host the event with Bex and Gee. This week we've got a busy schedule of challenges and blogging prompts, and I'll be hosting a Twitter chat on Wednesday. You're welcome to take part in any, all or none of these; most importantly, it's about the reading. It's lovely to take some time out of your week to rediscover old favourite books and return to the story worlds that feel like a second home - or a holiday you loved once and have been long meaning to return to.


So, without any further ado, let's start with a mini-questionnaire from Bex!

1. Tell us a little about yourself. 

I'm Katie, I live on the Isle of Wight and as well as being a voracious reader, I'm a massive sci-fi and fantasy geek in other genres. I've written a book for children and I'm just about ready for it to leave home and go out into the world. I enjoy crafts such as cross-stitching, knitting and crochet, love bright colours and have a very sweet tooth.

2. Have you participated in a re-readathon before? How often do you re-read books?

Yes, I've been doing this from the beginning, but this is my first time co-hosting anything. I re-read fairly regularly, but not as often as I would like due to my feelings of guilt about my ever-increasing to-read pile.

3. What is your current favourite book? 

You'll hear all about my all-time favourite book tomorrow, but the best thing I've read in the last year is Becky Chambers' debut novel, The Long Way to a Small Angry Planet. Set in a far-distant future, where the human race has quite recently joined an interstellar alliance, it follows the lives of a spaceship crew, an engineering team commissioned with the job of building a hyperspace wormhole in uncharted territory. But it's not about the job so much as the journey; Chambers has created a wonderfully diverse universe, celebrating the unity of different types of people discovering the things they have in common. I loved spending time with her characters and exploring her world-building, and the optimistic view of the future.

4. What do you love most about re-reading? Or what makes you wish you re-read more?

I love the feeling of being reunited with a good friend, and of noticing new things that you might have missed before, picking up on nuances and concentrating on different elements of what you're  reading, rather that racing ahead to find out what happens next.

5. What's on your TBR? What are you going to read first?




"Here's one I prepared earlier!" I've been adding books to my list over the last few months and came up with this lovely grey-and-orange pile.

Nineteen Eighty-Four by George Orwell. Apparently this book has shot to the top of the bestseller charts in the last week or two, for some reason... I studied this one for A-Level, and wrote an essay about how it seemed to predict the future. That was back in around 2003 - how much more relevant it'll seem fourteen years later, I am curious and a little fearful to discover.

Assassin's Apprentice by Robin Hobb. Part of a series of trilogies; I read this one ten years ago, and it just so happened that three of my friends were reading it at the same time, so we had an informal series of book clubs involving wine and deep discussions - sometimes even about the book! Two of the friends have moved away now, one to Gloucestershire, the other to Canada, but the remaining two of us still have our very own mini book clubs from time to time, in memory of these days.

The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood. Another dystopia, another A-Level book, and another one that cries out to be read again in 2017.

Kindred by Octavia Butler. A time-travel story, but more historical than science fiction. We're used to white men travelling here, there and everywhere in fiction, where all they need to come to terms with is the right clothes and language. But for a black woman in Maryland, the past is a very dangerous place indeed. With her narrative, Butler joins the dots between past and present and reminds readers that it is not a straightforward thing to say "that was then, everything is different now." And again, sadly, I am reminded more than ever that the past does not stay safely locked away. I think this book, often harrowing and heart-breaking even the first time around, is going to be even more difficult to read today. But that's just what makes it so important!

Ready Player One by Ernest Cline. This is just pure fun and escapism, a treasure-hunt story stuffed full of nerdy '80s references. Some I know, some I am less familiar with, but they are a geek's delight.

Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro. I went into this novel the first time around knowing nothing about it, and I think that's the best way to read it; to gradually come to terms with what is going on in the seemingly idyllic English setting alongside the characters. It'll be interesting to read it with that extra knowledge a second time. There won't be the surprises, but I'll be curious to see what significant details I overlooked first time around.

All of the Above by Juno Dawson (published under the name James Dawson.) A book for young adults about a teenage girl trying to figure out her own identity while campaigning with her friends to save their favourite hangout spot.

The Earth Hums in B Flat by Mari Strachan. I really loved this book and read it two or three times a while back. A precocious young girl tries to investigate what has happened to a missing man from her Welsh village. I remember it being quite quirky, with a childlike innocence unwittingly revealing a darkness the narrator does not quite understand, but the reader does. 

But the first book I read for the rereadathon was one I started a couple of days ago: Anne of Ingleside by Lucy Maud Montgomery. It's the sixth book in the Anne of Green Gables series, chronologically, though written last. It's been one of my least favourites on my last readthrough, only ahead of Anne of Windy Willows/Poplars, but I warmed to it more this time around. The focus is shared between Anne and her children, and we see a down-to-earth reality of the ups and downs of family life after the "happily ever after" of Anne of the Island and Anne's House of Dreams. I've also got the next book, Rainbow Valley lined up for this week, or next - I do not expect to finish ten books in eight days. 

Sunday's Stats:

Books read from: Anne of Ingleside
Books completed: 1
Pages read: 164
On the menu: Pizza, cookies and ice cream, blackberry wine.
What else have I been up to?: Feeling bunged up with a cold, watching Labyrinth (again) with a friend and introducing her to Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell BBC series.



You can use the linky below to share all your rereadathon posts.


2 comments:

  1. I still need to read A Long Way to a Small Angry Planet... Hopefully soon. Kindred sounds super interesting.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. They're both excellent books. I read Small Angry Planet TWICE last year which is unusual for me. Kindred is coming up next, after the Handmaid's Tale.

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