I’ve been doing quite well at sticking with my decision to try and read more this year. My to-read shelf has somehow become shelves and instead of reading literature I have got into the habit of pottering around on my phone reading articles and snippets. Reading stuff online is something that I enjoy as well but it is getting in the way of something that I enjoy more just because it is easier to grab my phone and read something for ten minutes than it is to pick up a book.
Of course the same goes with making things. I felt like I haven’t really made anything in a long time, so last weekend while my husband had friends over to play D&D I picked up my knitting needles and started on what will eventually be some sort of mixed-media hanging polaroid photo display for my dining room. It’s fun to be able to listen to what’s going on in the game while working on something. I’m not so sure if the mixture of yarn and image will work out, but the only way to decide is to get my hands moving and actually get to work on creating it.
Earlier in January I finished reading a book that I started before Christmas, Echo Lake by Leticia Trent. I picked it up as part of a decision to start reading more books published by small press, particularly local small press. Echo Lake is published by Dark House Press, an imprint of Curbside Splendor based out of Chicago. I thoroughly enjoyed Echo Lake, it’s a delightfully creepy literary horror about the dark secrets of a small town in Oklahoma.
This week I finished reading MaddAddam, the third book in Margaret Atwood’s MaddAddam Trilogy. I’m a Margaret Atwood fan, I loved the first book in this trilogy, Oryx and Crake. I enjoyed the second book, The Year of the Flood, so I was excited to read the final book and to see how the story played out. Unfortunately I found MaddAddam to be disappointing, it seemed weaker and much harder to get into than the previous two. Some of the characters I had previously loved became empty and I tripped on some of the references to everyday technology we have now that I’m pretty sure weren’t present in Oryx and Crake, and a few memespeak words that I found surprisingly grating. I stuck with it, it did pick up about two thirds of the way through and by the end I was moderately happy with the way the trilogy was finished.
I have a decision to make on which book I should read next. I have some nonfiction on my shelf, so I think that I might finish reading The Design of Everyday Things by Don Norman and then Pantone: The 20th Century in Color before sliding back into some more fiction.