Monday, December 31, 2012

Battle of the Book Lists...

For some folks, having the grandparents take the dear ones for a weekend means dinners out, drinking too much with friends and otherwise trying to make their no longer 20 and childless body perform 20 and childless activities that take longer to recover from than they used to.  For me, having Henry tucked away in South Carolina for the weekend led me to curl up on the couch under a blanket and read the last 800 pages of a ridiculously long book -Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follet.  It wasn't the best book I've ever read, but it was compelling enough for me to stick with it and remember why I love books so damn much after a dry spell.  Books kick ass.  And, try as I might, I still vastly prefer the weight of all 980 pages to my Kindle.  You just can't beat the turn of the page.

Henry was asked to participate in this year's Battle of the Books by his school librarian and agreed (after he had summarily refused every time I suggested that it might be fun, of course) and has started on the required reading. 

Henry's List

Nine Pound Hammer - Claude Bemis
Powerless - Matthew Cody
Cosmic - Frank Boyle
The Lemonade War - Jaqueline Davis
Moxy Maxwell Does Not Love Stewart Little - Peggy Gifford
Peace, Locomotion - Jaqueline Woodsoon
Ninth Ward - Jewell P. Rhodes
Storm Breaker - Anthony Horowitz
One Crazy Summer - Rita Williams
Out of My Mind - Sharon Draper
Seer of Shadows - Avi

Entertaining visions of he and I tucked into a blanket on the couch head to foot Grampa Joe and Grandma Josephine style with our respective books, sharing contraband snacks and bonding over the written word- I picked through all of NPR's "Best of 2012" book lists and came up with my own reading list.  My list is ever so slightly longer than his; I have never been known for my restraint, especially where lists are involved.  Who doesn't love a good list?  Anyway, in the interest of symmetry, I'll pare it down to ten.  Henry has already conquored one of his books, so we'll start out even steven.

Amy's List

Code Name Verity - Elizabeth Wein
Gone Girl - Gillian Flynn
My Heart is an Idiot - Davy Rothbart
The Orchardist - Amanda Coplin
The Lifeboat - Charlotte Rogan
American Ghost - Janis Owens
Arcadia - Lauren Groff
Wild - Cheryl Strayed
Behind the Beautiful Forevers - Katherine Boo
Girlchild - Tupelo Hassman

Yes, yes I know I am setting myself up for grave disappointment.  I know that Henry will tear through two books to my every one, and I am well aware that my little Dahl-esque vision of family reading time is likely to happen only when Henry is feeling particularly generous (or needs a favor) and I bring copious amounts of popcorn.  Still, it's the beginning of a New Year, and we are supposed to have grandiose visions of what's to come.

Happy New Year's Y'all.  Be sweet to each other.

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