30 Day Book Challenge: Book Series, Favorite Authors & Books I Didn’t Finish

I am going to play “catch up” since it is rare for me to do a post on the same day, every day, that the challenge goes on. What am I talking about? Well, it’s Sandman Jazz’s June 30-day book challenge, where every day of the month is a prompt concerning books. I was very enthusiastic about it but due to life happening, I didn’t have a chance to participate the other two days. So here it goes…

June 1 (Day 1): Favorite book in a series: The Ghostway by Tony Hillerman (Jim Chee/Joe Leaphorn series) – if you are unfamiliar with Tony Hillerman’s work, he wrote a lot of mysteries that comprise this series – Jim Chee and Joe Leaphorn are two Navajo cops on the reservation’s police force. The books are not only fun to read because they are mysteries but I also learned a lot about the reservation and Navajo culture. When we visited Canyon de Chelly in Arizona, we stayed at a lodge that had copies of all of his books in this series for guests to read.

This was the first Tony Hillerman book I read. I found it at our summer home where I’m sure my mother had put it after reading it. Anyway, I was hooked!!

June 2 (Day 2): Favorite book by my favorite writer: This is a hard one!   The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver; also Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen (when I can’t name just one, it’s either a tie or I just can’t decide.) I don’t really have just one favorite author and favorites change over time. But these two authors – Kingsolver and Austen – have long been favorites of mine.

This is not the cover of the book I read. I actually have a complete collection of Austen’s works that were printed over a century ago, when covers were plain. But I had seen PBS’s first TV series adaptation by the time I read the book, and after that I read all the rest of her novels.

June 3 (Day 3): Book I didn’t finish: I know it has happened, but I can’t remember what it was. I’m going to have to do some research in Goodreads, where I post all the books I read…According to Goodreads, there isn’t a book I haven’t finished. Well, I know it is rare! Once I start a book, I feel I have to finish. I know that I can start out not liking a book, but after slogging through the beginning, I get interested in the middle. And for my book groups, I see reading the book as “homework” – and I always do my homework!!

My next tactic was to look for books on my shelves that still have bookmarks in them, which means I probably meant to finish them someday. That’s why I still have them; otherwise, I would have given them away. I do remember one that I started reading for a special Halloween book group – it was so scary I had to put it down or I’d have nightmares. (I didn’t attend the discussion session.) Anyway, I can’t remember the name of the book – something about a heart in a box.

So I have found two books that still have bookmarks in them which are still on my non-fiction shelf. That means there’s hope I’ll get back to them at some point! The first is This Changes Everything: Capitalism vs. the Climate by Naomi Klein. I heard about it on NPR so I bought it and got halfway through with great enthusiasm. I don’t know why I put it down, but I haven’t gone back to it because since then I’ve heard other points of view and am not sure that capitalism and solving climate change are completely incompatible, which seems to be the author’s point of view. And yet I haven’t gotten rid of it.

The other is another book I heard about on NPR – they were interviewing the author and I found the conversation fascinating, so I bought the book she was promoting and allegedly on NPR to talk about: Braving the Wilderness: The quest for true belonging and the courage to stand alone by Brené Brown. I started it but I just got caught up in a lot of other books and it sat on my reading table next to my bed for a long time. Finally I realized I wasn’t going to finish it and had lost interest. But I kept it because I’m sure it has some valuable insight! It looks like a pretty fast read so I’ll probably get back to it eventually.

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