You'll love this one...!! A book club & more discussion

68 views
Chit Chat About Books > Holiday reads, beach reads and other ways of choosing

Comments Showing 1-19 of 19 (19 new)    post a comment »
dateDown arrow    newest »

message 1: by Cecily (new)

Cecily | 576 comments At this time of year "holiday reads" and "beach reads" are much mentioned, but do you make such a distinction when choosing what to read?

Wider still, how do you decide which book to read next?


message 2: by Kate (new)

Kate Z (kgordon3) | 144 comments I think of "summer reads" and "beach reads" totally differently. They are, in my mind, almost the opposite things. A summer read for me is a "meatier" book - often longer - longer days mean more time to read and still get done the things I have to do. For example, right now I'm reading Moby Dick -- yes, okay, how cliche -- but it's over 700 pages and a book that I have to concentrate on to read. A beach read is just that - a book I can read at the beach (or by the pool or whatever). A book that is easy to pick up and equally easy to put down. It tends to be a more action-filled kind of book (dramatic action or physical action) that is usually not super challenging in the language department. Perfect example of that is Where She Went which I read last week while still reading Moby-Dick: or, The Whale. I was going to be at pool and I needed a book I could read and still watch my kids. I was able to read Where She Went in a couple of hours. Moby Dick has already consumed the better part of 3 weeks!


message 3: by Cheryl (new)

Cheryl (cherylllr) I choose based on what I need to read for group reads and challenges! Beyond that, I do choose based on what I believe I'm up for. I keep looking at the 'meatier' books on my shelf, and trying to choose them, but I have to be honest, this month I seem to be stuck in children's. When the kids are back in school I might be able to concentrate on something more substantial - but I'll pass on Moby Dick! :)


message 4: by Janice, Moderator (new)

Janice (jamasc) | 47972 comments I'm like Cheryl in that I base my next few selections based on my book club, group reads and challenges. The exception to that are audiobooks. For some reason, I listen to them in the order in which they are downloaded.

Generally, I don't differentiate between beach or summer reads. Last summer, I went to visit my sister in Hawaii. At the airport, I discovered the book my book club was reading, Tears of the Desert. I knew it was going to be a heavy read but decided to buy it so that I would have it for when I got home. As it was, I ended up reading it on the flight home because I had read everything else.


message 5: by Tara (new)

Tara Woolpy | 10 comments This is interesting. I think of what I write as beach reads - by which I mean books that entertain. For me, meaty books are for winter when I can curl up by the fire. My summers are far too distracting for Moby Dick (ok, I admit, I've never read Moby Dick, having been stopped short at the idea of an entire chapter devoted to the color white).


Anne (On semi-hiatus) (reachannereach) Tara wrote: "ok, I admit, I've never read Moby Dick, having been stopped short at the idea of an entire chapter devoted to the color white). "


That THE BEST chapter.


message 7: by Kate (new)

Kate Z (kgordon3) | 144 comments Actually, there are TWO chapters devoted to the color white. The first chapter describes how white is usually associated with positive things - royalty (royal steeds are white), purity (wedding dresses), innocence, etc. Then the next chapter contradicts that one and talks about all the fearsome associations with the color white (notably: polar bears).

Not to derail this thread from "beach reads" to Moby Dick but it's actually a really good book. I had "read" it in college the way that I "read" a lot of things - I skimmed through it and did what I needed to do in order to write the paper or take the test. This time I'm actually READING it.

And the reason I'm reading it is because I was on vacation in Maui with some extended family and they were reading it as a family book club. They went on a field trip to the Whalers Village whaling museum and then they all stayed up late one night and talked about it. Their three kids are spread across the country with one just having graduated from college and I thought it was such a neat thing to do. I ended up taking my 5 year old son along to the whaling museum and his aunt bought him a pop up Moby Dick. Now my son is fascinated with it and we've read the pop up and a little childrens book version and he's been asking me to read him pages of my book (to be fair, I've picked the scenes where they are whale hunting which are written in quick, tumbling sentences that pull you quickly through the action, not the chapter(s) on white). We've had discussions about man versus nature (which is more powerful), about strangers who "look weird" (Queeqeg) who actually turn out to be nice, about revenge (compared Ahab to Annikin Skywalker) and whether or not it's "right" to kill animals (or anything). So while I admit, it sort of seems like a joke that I'm reading Moby Dick, it is functioning like "the greatest American novel" should - providing food for thought not just to me but to an extended family.


message 8: by Cecily (last edited Jul 15, 2011 05:59AM) (new)

Cecily | 576 comments Kate wrote: "I think of "summer reads" and "beach reads" totally differently. They are, in my mind, almost the opposite things..."

I hadn't thought of that!

For me, I have a long (mental) TBR list and what I read from it depends on a variety of factors, but holiday considerations only feature if I have limited luggage space or if I am going to a country with a very different culture, in which case I may read some fiction set there.

When I get new recommendations, whether from real world friends, or reviews here or in the press, they just go to the TBR pile (even if I haven't actually bought them yet).

The only book group I belong to is this one, and although the monthly reads have enticed me to read some books I would not otherwise have read (some of which I've really enjoyed), I feel no compunction to read all of them.

So over all, my choices are pretty radom. I've seen the challenges that many people in this group are enjoying, but I can't see myself following suit.

It's interesting how varied we are in our approaches.


message 9: by Alison (new)

Alison Forde | 269 comments An ereader is great for the holiday!. Last year I took 6 books on holiday, this year luggage was much lighter as I took my kindle with plenty of TBRs on it. (Did however pick up 3 thrift store paper backs while away, weighing me down.)


message 10: by Cheryl (new)

Cheryl (cherylllr) Thanks for the info. on Moby Dick - you're almost tempting me! I recommend you copy that post into your review, as an addendum perhaps. It's so cool to have a family read. I mean, I do share some stuff with my son, even though he's 15 now - but with an extended family of teens and adults, that's awesome!


message 11: by Janice, Moderator (new)

Janice (jamasc) | 47972 comments A family book club is such a cool idea, Kate. I've decided to start reading more classics. I'm not sure about Moby Dick. I think I'll read The Last of the Mohicans first.

Alson, I used to drag along at least 4 books when we went on holiday under some misguided notion that I was going to spend a lot of time reading. I stopped doing that at some point because it was silly to pack all that weight around. Now that I've got the Kindle and iBook apps on my iPad, weight is no longer an issue.


message 12: by Cecily (new)

Cecily | 576 comments It's easier to avoid biblioguit if the books you feel you ought to like (but probably won't) remain forever on your TBR pile. If you actually read them and prove that you dislike them, the guilt comes full force. ;-)


Anne (On semi-hiatus) (reachannereach) Judy wrote: "Kate said, Actually, there are TWO chapters devoted to the color white. The first chapter describes how white is usually associated with positive things - royalty (royal steeds are white), purity (..."

I encourage you to fall into temptation. Those chapters are amazing, IMHO.


message 14: by Janice, Moderator (new)

Janice (jamasc) | 47972 comments It may be a while before I read Last of the Mohicans, Judy. I will keep you informed. :)


message 15: by Dorottya (new)

Dorottya (dorottya_b) | 35 comments I do choose some beach reads - it's because if I'm sweating out in the sun, I just can't process more eloquently written high literature. So, I bring my CSI books and chick lit with myself when I go to the beach / lakeside :). I don't really do a distinction like that with my holiday reading pile, though.


message 16: by Cherie (new)

Cherie (crobins0) | 19791 comments Janice wrote: "It may be a while before I read Last of the Mohicans, Judy. I will keep you informed. :)"

I am laughing, Janice. Did you ever read TLM?


message 17: by Cherie (new)

Cherie (crobins0) | 19791 comments Dorottya wrote: "I do choose some beach reads - it's because if I'm sweating out in the sun, I just can't process more eloquently written high literature. So, I bring my CSI books and chick lit with myself when I g..."

Dorottya - I have been watching these old threads come up in my discussions lists. Gotta love it!


message 18: by Janice, Moderator (new)

Janice (jamasc) | 47972 comments Cherie wrote: "Janice wrote: "It may be a while before I read Last of the Mohicans, Judy. I will keep you informed. :)"

I am laughing, Janice. Did you ever read TLM?"


Not yet. I started it, but wasn't in the mood for it so set it aside for another day. That day hasn't come yet. LOL!


message 19: by Sarah, Moderator (new)

Sarah | 18169 comments I'm off on holiday in a couple of weeks and I'm already trying to work out which books would make good beach/plane reads - I have a few in mind but it is looking like the toppler will coincide with my holiday so I may have to rethink these once I know the theme of it. I like to choose easy fun reads for holiday reading.


back to top