Friday, July 18

Literary Junkies: July Update

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1. What are you reading? Tell us about it!
I just finished Wild by Cheryl Strayed.  It was the perfect summer read for me - all of the adventure of hiking the Pacific Coast Trail without the sunburn and bug bites!  Strayed's reasons for hiking the trail were so heartbreaking, and I could relate to the shock and depression she went through after losing a parent.  To break out of her downward spiral, she decided to do something brave and a little bit crazy - hike from the Mojave Desert to the Bridge of the Gods in Washington.  Her drive to keep going in spite of health problems and threats from wild animals and questionable human beings is really inspirational.

2. Do you find yourself reading more of a particular genre during the heat of summer? 
Since during the school year I spend so much time reading either YA literature or professional books, I'm making a conscious effort this summer to read novels and memoirs written for adults.  

3. Who are your favorite book villains (either to love or to hate?)
Not so much a villain as an antagonist, I 100% adore Severus Snape from the Harry Potter books.  I can't remember when my Snape-loved kicked in, but it was initially due to his sarcasm and snark - he's the ultimate example of how not to teach teenagers!  I love how J.K. Rowling developed Snape from the creepy guy who was always looking over Harry's shoulder and thwarting his school corridor mystery-solving into a tragic hero.  

4. If you could choose one author’s writing powers to harness, who would you choose and why?
Harper Lee.  To be able to write just one perfect book, that captures the spirit of a place and a time period and brings characters into the world who are realer than real people because they speak for multitudes - what a gift!

5. Do you read one book at a time, or read multiple books at once?
In high school and college, I always had multiple books going - what we were studying in class along with what I was reading for fun.  During the school year, I am always reading a book from the school library during in-class reading time to prep for book talks, and I'm usually reading a professional book or something written for adults as well.

6. What are some of your favorite non-fiction books?
I love books of humorous essays, like Mindy Kaling's Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me?, Tina Fey's Bossypants, and Chelsea Handler's books.  When I am in a more serious mood, I read books about teaching: my favorite memoir about teaching is Educating Esmé bEsmé Raji Codell my two favorite professional development books are The Book Whisperer by Donalyn Miller and Getting Started by Linda Ellis and Jamie Marsh (my thesis advisor at UVa!).


  1. I used to love reading and I´m more of the Stephen King type and the usual bestseller writers such as Dan Brown, James Patterson, Robert Ludlum, John Grisham,et al but since living here in Spain, I´ve stopped the hobby, hahaha!

    1. Have you read the Millennium series (Girl with the Dragon Tattoo)? They're really suspenseful. You might also like Half Bad by Sally Green - it's fantasy but parts of it read like a crime novel.

  2. I just love to read! I am currently re-reading the Twilight Saga (yes I am one of those people obsessed with Twilight). I really love to read true crime books....Stephen King books-while I was reading The Shining, I literally had to put the book down a few times & just sit there & remind myself that it is just a book! It was that scary.


    1. My husband and I both got sucked into the Twilight books! I haven't ever really gotten into Stephen King's novels but I enjoyed some of his short stories that I read in my high school creative writing class - "The Boogeyman" is the one I remember the most.