It’s December now and I’m seeing a lot of best books lists. I used to love these lists because it gave me more books to add to my list and I love hearing about books I wasn’t previously aware of. But this year I’m feeling frustrated and thinking I should stop reading those lists. I now am well aware of all of the hot books because of literary Twitter and reading about books from many other sources. And those lists just talk about the same hyped books that have gotten attention all year. Often, those hyped books aren’t even the best books published that year. Miller’s Valley by Anna Quindlen and Juliet Takes a Breath by Gabby Rivera should be getting a lot of love, but I haven’t seen either book on a single list.
I’m not sure how many more of these 3 Things posts I’ll be doing this year, since December is a particularly busy month for me with a birthday and anniversary, in addition to Christmas. So, I’ll share at least one of my New Year resolution ideas. I’ve used Goodreads challenges to keep track of what I read for the year, but I’ve decided starting in 2017 I want to record in a special book journal. Right now I only keep track of the books I read for myself and finish. In the 2017 book journal I plan to keep track of the books I begin, even if I bail on them. And I’ll also record the books I read to my son. Plus I’ll do a rating system of some sort, though I’m not sure if I’ll go Goodreads style with stars or Litsy style with pick/so-so/bail symbols. If the book is particularly special or if I just feel like it, I’ll probably also add a short review. I’m not usually creative, but I’ve always liked stickers, so maybe those will make an appearance.
I feel like having a more permanent and easily accessible record of what I read might be important. I think that the books one chooses to read show where their mind and heart are at that time. When I first had my son, I read more books that featured young mothers or non-fiction about motherhood, especially feminist non-fiction analysis about motherhood. This year I decided I need to make more of an effort and a priority to read diversely, which I think is reflected in the 2nd half of the 2016’s reading.
My son is still in love with non-fiction books about bugs and sharks, but he’s more happily reading story books. I was wondering if it was wrong to force him to choose 2 story books and not let him just check out non-fiction from the library, but now I feel better about my decision. Non-fiction is good to read, but story books can teach things that non-fiction books can’t. My story book pick for this coming week is Ada Twist, Scientist by Andrea Beaty. I really like it, though it’s a little too long for my son, so we read it together half of the book at a time. (I’ve also read it completely by myself once.)