Reading Challenges Are Like Biscuits

Come on, I can’t have just one. That would be wrong.

More than a week into 2015, the year I was going to embrace challenges to help me read outside my zone, and I still haven’t settled on what challenges suits me. I also haven’t lost any weight but that’s another story. And possibly related to biscuits.

There’s some on this list, such as ‘banned books’ that I like the idea of, but I have an enormous to-be-read pile that cannot be neglected (Mainly in case it falls on me, and I’m crushed).

And I will not be doing anything like ’50 books’ for the year, or the Facebook guy’s book club thing of a book a fortnight, as I think it means nothing to tot up amounts if the content is not understood or appreciated. There are tons of books that can be read in a day or so, but others need thinking about, and so I’m guessing the Facebook book club doesn’t feature Proust or Joyce. Or tombstone sized books like War and Peace or Clarissa. And as I get most of my books secondhand, it’s often a case of what jumps out at me in the Oxfam book shop, so a specific list might mean spending great fistfuls of cash.

So, I shall be breaking the year up in to lots of goals.

And speaking of Joyce, he is one of them. I bought a cheap copy of Finnegans Wake, I opened it, I had no idea what the hell I was looking at, so had to go away and buy two guides. I have to read it now, I’ve invested too much cash in this book to let it languish. And with the aid of the guides, a notepad, and people on the internet to discuss thing with, a boat-load of tea, and possibly some counseling, I shall get Finnegans Wake not just read, but as understood (as much as I possibly can, anyway). And maybe I’ll discover why there’s no apostrophe in the title.




I have just started Dante’s ‘Inferno’, and have the next two parts of The Divine Comedy, Purgatorio and Paradiso ready to go next. I’m having fun reading it, but also listening to another translation that’s on Youtube, as with epic poetry, and some other texts that take more than one drive through to get the full grasp of, listening can bring something new. And can be done on the move. Or when supposed to be working.