Call it coincidence. Call it serendipity. Either way, the conjunction of a post that reminded me just how big the “to be read” stacks are and the announcement of a reading challenge have motivated me to whittle down those stacks.
It’s the Random Reading Challenge. The rules are fairly simple: (1) randomly select any number of books from the TBR list, (2) assign a number to each book based on how many books you selected (e.g., 1 through 10), and (3) use a random number generator and then read the book assigned to that number.
I’ve modified (broken) the rules a bit. First, I didn’t choose a random number of TBR books. Instead, I’m using the 51 that were in that recent post and numbering them by the order in which they appeared in the post. I figure that was arguably random as it freezes the list at a specific point in time. Second, although the challenge begins August 1, I started a week early, figuring even if the one or two might not count toward the challenge, every one helps reduce the stacks. Thus, I’ve already read one book and decided another was going in the box heading to the used book store as I’ve started it twice and it just hasn’t generated any continuing interest.
And reducing any guilt I feel over the large number of unread books helps bring serenity.
Book 1 completed (August 8, 2009): Blameless in Abaddon, James Morrow
Book 2 (August 17, 2009): The Measure of a Man: A Spiritual Autobiography, Sidney Poitier
Book 3 (August 30, 2009): Voices From the Street, Philip K. Dick
Book 4 (November 21, 2009) (I know, a bit of a gap): Windows on the World, Frederic Beigbeder
Book 5 (November 27, 2009): To Kill a Mockingbird, Harper Lee
Book 6 (November 29, 2009): The Innocent, Ian McEwan
Book 7 (January 26, 2010): Black Dogs, Ian McEwan
Book 8 (February 14, 2010): Death in Spring, Merce Rodoreda
Book 9 (April 27, 2010): Manhunt: The 12-Day Chase for Lincoln’s Killer, James L. Swanson
The love of books is a love which requires neither justification, apology, nor defence.
John Langford, The Praise of Books