Goodreads 2014 Challenge

Every year I set out to read 50 books by the end of the year. I open myself up to possible online shaming by posting this goal on Goodreads. I started these challenges in 2011 and have yet to accomplish one once. The failings haven’t hit too hard though. I committed myself to the challenge after I realized that I hadn’t finished one single book over a couple of years.

Since then, my average book reading hovers around 30 each year. The only limitation for the Goodreads tracking is that they don’t include books I’ve already read and I’m a big believer of the reread. 2014 has not exactly been a banner year for reading in the Ria house. Every rationale spills out of my mouth like cheap excuses so I’ll just say my 2014 reading is at 18. Gulp. I am in the middle of several books right now and have over 3 months for redemption from feeling a little less wretched.

An article popped up on my reader via Joy the Baker reminding me why I started the challenge in the first place. Also, every year I invariably fall in love with a new book(s).

Here are the books I’m currently reading:

Goldfinch by Donna Tartt: This is a very buzzy book and I adored Donna Tartt’s writing since The Secret History. So far, I am not disappointed.

Dylan Thomas: Collected Poems: My guidelines for “book” are less stringent than just novels and after reading The Love Letters of Dylan Thomas, this felt like a natural next.

Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte: This was September’s book club book and I’ve only read the first page. Oops. Must finish.

Neuromancer by William Gibson: After reading Idoru and Pattern Recognition, I thought I’d be ready for Neuromancer. Nope. I have not given up because I’m stubborn. But 62 pages in and I have no idea what’s going on.

Doctor Who “Listen”

doctor who peter Steven Moffat is like the Doctor. He takes you away from your otherwise dull reality and transports you into something that’s magic. It’s maddening too. Occasionally, erratic. He is cleverer than you, but he lies. You trust in his goodness though. You trust that by choosing you for this adventure, he sees the brilliance in you that you only hope is there. Somewhere.

The trick is that watching Doctor Who can feel like magic and other times you’re reminded that it’s just a television show. No madman exists in a blue box. A curtain pulls back and all you see are blundering plots or a weak tag line disguised as a story.

Last week’s “Listen” revolved around the Doctor and Clara exploring the monster underneath the bed. It turned into an examination of fear. Clara says fear is a companion to us all. Being afraid isolates us. And yet sometimes it reminds us to listen to a kind and familiar voice telling us we are afraid, but we are not lost. We can be strong. We can face the monsters or the darkness. We can be brilliant and clever and more like those people we always thought we could be.