Saturday, January 1, 2011

Book challenge results

This year I participated in Kristin's 2010 Book Challenge and set a goal to read 36 books this year. I did not keep very good track of the books I read, so this list may be a little incomplete. I started to use the library more rather than buy books, so I no longer have a shelf of books as a record of what I read. I didn't quite meet my goal, but may have come slightly closer than this list reveals. Since I came close, I will increase my goal to 40 books this year. Let's see how I do!

I categorized the books in case you were interested in reading some of them.

IF/Adoption books:
1. The Infertility Cure: The Ancient Chinese Wellness Program for Getting Pregnant and Having Healthy Babies
2. Baby, We Were Meant For Each Other, Scott Simon (about adoption)
3. Hannah's Hope, Jennifer Saake (approaching IF from a Christian perspective)

Fiction books with an IF/RPL/adoption theme. This year I couldn't seem to escape this topic even when I picked up novels looking for a distraction:
4. The Help by Kathryn Stockett (enjoyed this book a lot, but be warned that a character has RPL)
5. Run by Ann Patchett (I liked this book, but not as much as other Patchett books, maybe it is b/c reading a book where the main characters have a freaky run-in with their birthmother right as you are thinking of starting the adoption process is not a good idea)
6. The Time Traveler's Wife (a good read, I haven't seen the movie, so I don't know if the RPL made it into the film)
7. Handle with Care, Jodi Picoult (I liked this book, but not my favorite this year; story revolves around a young girl with severe birth defect and a lawsuit about whether the mother wishes she was not born)
8. The Well and the Mine by Gin Phillips (interesting portrait of a coal mine town and family; story revolves around figuring out who dumped a dead baby into a well)

Books I read for work:
9. Teacher Evaluation to Enhance Professional Practice
10. Connecting Mathematical Ideas
11. The Death and Life of the Great American School System: How Testing and Choice Are Undermining Education
12. Between Public and Private: Politics, Governance,and the New Portfolio Models for Urban School Reform
13. Organizing Schools for Improvement: Lessons from Chicago

Other non-fiction:
14. Mornings on Horseback (biography of Theodore Roosevelt)
15. Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell
16. Strength in What Remains by Tracy Kidder (about someone who escaped genocide in Burundi)
17. Guide to Home Preserving. I don't remember the exact name and am feeling lazy right now to go downstairs and check it, but I did actually read this book about canning (my new present!).
18. Why Catholic series. Anything over 50 pages counts, right? I read this in weekly installments with my church group.
19. On Conscience. A book consisting of two essays by John Ratzinger (now Pope Benedict) on how to form your conscience and make moral decisions

Other fiction:
20. A Mercy by Toni Morrison (not the best by Morrison)
21. The Jungle, Upton Sinclair (good read, but not something I would say you need to run out and read now)
22. The Lacuna, Barbara Kingsolver (enjoyed this book)
23. America America, Ethan Canin (I really liked this book)
24. Freedom, Jonathan Franzen (I thought this was overrated)
25. The Reluctant Fundamentalist by Mohsin Hamid (I didn't like this book)
26. Babylon Rolling by Amanda Boyden (very good book about a NOLA neighborhood in the year before Katrina)
27-33. All seven Harry Potter books (my first time reading them. I spent the first two wondering what all the hoopla was about, but by the fourth book, I couldn't put them down!)

Half books
34. True Compass (autobiography of Teddy Kennedy) - I "read" this in the car on CD

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