Books are Back!

I haven’t been reading for a while.  You go through phases of having time for certain hobbies and not having time for them, right?  I’m sure you’ve been there before.  That said, this is the first time in my life that I haven’t had time for reading.  I think that makes it a noteworthy situation.

The exciting part of this story is that I think the no-reading phase is coming to a close.  I cited time in the last paragraph as my reason to not read, but it’s also because I haven’t felt all that inspired to read lately.  Then I remembered something great this morning.

I was thinking that my new library just doesn’t have the books I really want to read.  Or it does have them, but I don’t run smack dab into books like I used to.  When you work at the reference desk, people are always asking you about books you haven’t heard of before, and you actually see the new books on a new books cart every day.  You’re bound to find something you want to read.

When you work in a cave at the back of the library, however, people start asking you about software instead of books.  [I ask that you take a moment of silence to mourn the loss in my life of daily conversations about books.]

Then as I was getting ready to leave the house today, I remembered that I have an entire wall full of books at home that I haven’t read yet.  They just sit there, and I so often think, “I don’t have time to read all of those right now.”  But now I do have time to read them.  My library source of books has run dry, and it’s time to use my personal library again.  I’m kind of excited about that.

Because I was short on decision-making time this morning, I grabbed three books that I intend to start or finish in the near future.  Drum roll, please:

photo from Better World Books

The Geometry of Pasta is a pretty obvious pick, since I love food and I love things that are somehow related to Italy.  It’s technically more like a cookbook than anything else, but I intend to read through it before adding it to my cookbook shelf.  The illustrations are beautiful, and there’s some great history and random information mixed in with the recipes and cooking suggestions.

photo from Better World Books

Damosel is a young adult book (translation: it’s written for a middle school or high school audience and will be a really quick read).  It’s about the Lady of the Lake in Arthurian legend, who I’ve been thinking about more in the past several months thanks to a popular country song that references her.  This should be a good change from what I’ve read in the recent past.

photo from Better World Books

I was supposed to finish Olive Kitteridge for the November or December book club at my old library.  I read enough of it to successfully lead a discussion of themes and characters, but there are probably 100 pages that I skipped near the end.  It bothers me (a lot) to leave a book unfinished indefinitely, so that’s why this one is still on the list.  It’s award-winning, and I do think the characters are complex and well-written.  It’s also kind of depressing.

So all of that to say that I’m excited about reading again.  Lunch breaks will once more be dedicated to dorkiness, and hopefully I’ll have more good books to tell you about in the near future.

Reading When There’s No Time

I started this great book a few months ago.  It’s called The Experts’ Guide to Doing Things Faster: 100 ways to make life more efficient.  Really, what’s not to like about that?!

Lots of people who are experts in their field have written a few pages about how to do something quickly and well.  It’s kind of my dream come true.  I spent most of college and grad school figuring out how to write a high quality research paper in the least possible time.

My only complaint is that I recently ran out of reading time.  My free time that used to go towards cleaning my house and lazing around with a book vanished into thin air, and now Peanut languishes in piles of his own dog hair while I try to muddle my way through a minimal number of chores.

I don’t mind my loss of reading time.  I’ve read plenty in the last few years to get me through a dry spell or two.  Even so, I have a proposal for the experts of The Experts’ Guide to Doing Things Faster.

Why not make things easy for your readers?  Why not start the book with the chapter on speed-reading?  Then the people who need the book most will actually be able to finish it before the library starts sending the cops after them.  Just a thought.  Instead of teaching me how to sell a house on page 5 and making me wait until page 135 for reading suggestions, you should make sure I actually make it to page 135.  I didn’t.  Now I’ll never know how to read a page in two to five seconds.  (Okay, so I did scan the chapter on speed-reading after I found out that it existed.)