Friday, January 01, 2016

Reading Roundup: December 2015

By the Numbers
Teen: 7
Tween: 2
Children: 2

Library: 3
Review Copies: 6

Teen: The Scorpion Rules by Erin Bow
Dense with politics and sacrifice and an AI who would be pure snarky delight if he wasn't the freaking ubervillain, this is all shades of gray and DAMN I loved it.
Tween: The Hired Girl by Laura Amy Schlitz Look, I know there was a kerfuffle about this book. Owning my position as a Catholic woman with slightly more but not that much more knowledge of Judaism than the main character, I found it a thoughtful, nuanced depiction of an ignorant girl growing in compassion, faith, and understanding of the world.
Children: Queen Victoria's Bathing Machine by Gloria Whelan, illustrated by Nancy Carpenter
This was a delight. I loved the royal children swarming the house and Victoria and Albert's clear devotion. Such a different view of a queen usually depicted as dour and stuffy.

And now: some blather.

I started doing the roundups some years ago when my set of books read often topped thirty and sometimes forty in a month. It was a way to highlight books that I hadn't necessarily gotten the chance to talk about any other way.

But for a variety of reasons, I'm not reading nearly as many books anymore as I used to. I also haven't posted many reviews, I think because I feel like I have to consider each one in words and words and words,and it's just intimidating. Not to mention, just as other things have taken over my reading energy, other things have also taken over my writing energy. So this is my last monthly roundup.

Instead, I'm going to try something more akin to what Ms. Yingling does - a brief review, encapsulating her experience in a few sentences. I've also found that my thoughts sometimes change the farther I get away from the immediate experience of the book. Sometimes this is because I'm following the online discussion on the book, sometimes it's just that I'm able to step back and consider the bigger picture. I make notes for myself immediately upon finishing the book, on LibraryThing, so I'll incorporate those, and then go back later to say if my opinions have changed or my thoughts have expanded.

In the past year, I've also doven headfirst into Tumblr (part of the reason a lot of that reading and writing energy got mopped up). I'll still have this blog, but I'll be cross-posting to and hopefully getting a little more involved with the book community on there as well as the more traditional kidlitosphere.