500 Great Books By Women discussion

Reading Women Bingo 2020 > Kathy's 2020 RWB

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message 1: by Kathy (last edited Jun 22, 2020 09:29AM) (new)

Kathy (kathyxtran) | 16 comments I thought I'd fill this out for fun, although for most challenges, I've found that I always just end up reading what I want and shoehorning them in. This year (as with most years, but really this time!) I am focussing on getting through my physical book backlog, and I want to read more works pre-1950s, but I think this challenge looks doable on top of that.

I won't retroactively count reads so far this year (though I could check off 3 of them already). I'm not going to even write out a plan, because I know I won't follow it. Here we go!

message 2: by Aubrey (last edited Jan 24, 2020 08:26AM) (new)

Aubrey (korrick) | 2004 comments Welcome to the challenge, Kathy. I'm looking forward to seeing your reading choices (enough that you can totally retroactively add any fitting 2020 reads if you like ;) ).

message 3: by Kathy (last edited Dec 03, 2020 01:18AM) (new)

message 4: by Kathy (last edited Jun 22, 2020 09:50AM) (new)

Kathy (kathyxtran) | 16 comments I've filled out some of these just retroactively. I could probably check off a few more but I'll reserve those challenges for later. While browsing my read list from this year, I can't believe I actually read them in 2020 and not a hundred years ago ...

B2 Scifi: Escaping Exodus by Nicky Drayden
I1 In translation: Space Invaders by Nona Fernández
I5 Novella: Great Granny Webster by Caroline Blackwood
N5 Fantasy: Under the Pendulum Sun by Jeannette Ng
O2 Asian author: Where Reasons End by Yiyun Li
O3 Poetry: Voyage of the Sable Venus and Other Poems Robin Coste Lewis
O4 Nonfiction: The Library Book Susan Orlean

message 5: by Aubrey (new)

Aubrey (korrick) | 2004 comments Nice to see your progress, Kathy. Did 'Great Granny Webster' go well for you? I have that on my own shelves.

message 6: by Kathy (new)

Kathy (kathyxtran) | 16 comments Aubrey wrote: "Nice to see your progress, Kathy. Did 'Great Granny Webster' go well for you? I have that on my own shelves."

This is such a belated response, but that's 2020 for you. I enjoyed it. I found it quite satirical, but I think if the subject matter struggles to be of much interest (the lives of rich, aristocratic British people), the takeaway might be 'well, so what?' But it's a quick read, and only a 'novella' by a stretch--really just three short stories that are studies of three characters/lifestyles. Certainly, the portrait that Blackwood creates of this class (and those adjacent to them, who don't necessarily come out unscathed either) lingers.

I'm reading The Tenant of Wildfell Hall right now and though it's much more a realist work of overt social criticism, it's an interesting comparison--the depictions of 'dark' topics, heightened and made absurd by Blackwood, and detailed unflinchingly by Brontë, both rooted in their real-life experiences of familial trauma.

message 7: by Kathy (new)

Kathy (kathyxtran) | 16 comments Home stretch. I've rearranged some of the books I had in each space. The ones left are mainly the century boxes, which I have to choose something for 1900s and 2000s, and I have to read something pre-1800. I see next year's challenge is already up, and I'm super keen on tackling reading older works. This was sort of an implicit goal of mine for the past couple years, but, without surprise, I didn't really make any effort to it.

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