What Should I Read This Year?


I did not read enough in 2016. My reasons are my own.

Still, I know that to be a good writer, I need to be a good (and prolific) reader.

Whilst I do not set resolutions for the new year, I do set some goals. One of them for 2017 is to read more. I have set my Goodreads challenge to read 40 books this year. I can do it.

The challenge is in knowing what to read.

SCRIPTURE: I have set as another goal to read through the Bible again this year. I found a daily plan that fits nicely into my Google calendar so I have a daily reminder. Fortunately there are daily readings from both the Old and New Testaments so come February I shouldn’t become too bogged down in Leviticus. I’ve done this before. It was time to do it again.

I shall refrain from posting on Goodreads that I’ve read 66 books.

LITERATURE/DRAMA: I’ve had on my bucket list for some time reading The Complete Works of Shakespeare. Just because I never have. So when my wife found a plan suggested by our Pastor’s wife (Sue Schlessman) to read through Shakespeare in a year, I decided to give it a shot. A week in, it’s a challenge. Also a week in, it’s the challenge that I plan to complete, but I may stretch it out to more than a year.

TOLKIEN: I re-watched The Lord of the Rings movies over my Christmas break. I realized it’s time to read the books again. It’s been a few years. I’ll also add The Hobbit (but no one should have to endure The Hobbit movies more than once). I may add some other Tolkien writings as well. I’m thinking these may be good things to take to the beach.

On a side note, I also re-watched all eight of the Harry Potter movies over Christmas. I should think about re-reading the books. Just maybe not this year.

In other readings…

I want to continue the Odd Thomas series by Dean Koontz. I’ve read the first two. Next up would be Brother Odd.

I need to read some more Stephen King. I’ve read The Stand, The Lovely Bones, and am due to have another read of On Writing. I’m not sure what should be next on that list. Suggestions?

I might also have to see what I’ve not read on Gregory Maguire’s list. While I love the musical, I’m more a fan of the Wicked book series. As a child, I read all of the Oz books by L. Frank Baum. All of them.

I suppose I should actually mention what else I’m currently reading.

I’m about 75% of the way through The Complete Stories of Flannery O’Conner. I’ll admit her writing style took some getting used to.

I’m also re-reading through the Shannara series by Terry Brooks in his suggested reading order. Currently I’m working on Jarka Ruus (High Druid of Shannara). I read the first of these books a long time ago and wanted to revisit them.

Here’s a funny thing. I started this post with the idea of looking for suggestions because I didn’t know what to read this year. I think I’ve got a pretty good start.

But, even looking at what is on my list, I still do need some suggestions.

I could probably do with some more world history. I love my Virginia public school education, but we tended to talk a lot more about Jamestown through the Civil War than we did world events. Or perhaps I just didn’t pay attention.

For a while I was reading about European royalty because their lives and their interrelationships fascinate me. Maybe I’ll find a few more.

Along with that, I could use some more biographies. Perhaps it’s a bit quirky, but I have a self-imposed rule to not read biographies until after the subject is dead. Sadly, after 2016, there are probably a lot that I can add to the list.

So, there you have it. More or less.

Suggestions to what I should add to the reading list?


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