Summer Time = Reading Time!

Sweet summer is here. This one is sweeter because I don't have to log on to that darn UNT website to begin a summer session like I've had to do over the past two years. I'M FREE! So that means more time to READ! But in typical Amianne fashion, I have already booked up my summer with stuff. I will: teach the 1st session of the Abydos Institute, travel to Georgia and South Carolina, de-crapify our house and paint some rooms that are still "builder beige," and work on some projects in my library. I don't do lazy well, and I am excited about doing all of these things. And, of course, I will make room for reading in my busy summer.

I've started making my Summer Reading List, and I don't feel like it is as enticing as in summers past. I have yet to come across many "buzz-worthy" new releases, or at least I haven't heard of many that interest me. So I feel like my list is very personal to my tastes because most of the selections are books that I've heard about throughout the Spring that I haven't been able to read. So without further ado, here is my Summer 2011 Reading List. If you click on the title, it will link you to Amazon:

Books that I'm the most excited about reading:
  1. On Folly Beach by Karen White--I'm going to Folly Beach, South Carolina, in July, and I love the thought of reading this book while lying on actual Folly Beach! (oh, the irony!)
  2. Beach Music by Pat Conroy--I'm really a "poser" Pat Conroy fan because I have only read a few of his books. But I have read enough to know that this man is a writing god who can string words together like...well, I am not worthy of creating a simile to convey the brilliance of Conroy. All I know is that his work embodies why I am a lover of words. This is my dear friend Tara's favorite Conroy book, and she is appalled every time she finds out I have not read it. Since I will be in Conroy country (Charleston, SC), I want to soak up his beautiful prose and see the Low Country through his eyes.
  3. The Pretty Little Liars Series by Sara Shephard--This series screams "MIND CANDY," which is what summer reading is all about. It will be an indulgent treat to sprinkle in between my heavy, intense doses of Conroy.
  4. One Day by David Nicholls--I've seen this movie preview twice, and I've got to read this book AND see the movie when it is released.
  5. The Little Women Letters by Gabrielle Donnelly--This is the newest release on my list (June 7th), and it makes connections to Little Women and Jo March. I'm intrigued!
Books from the Spring (or last Summer) that I still want to read:
  1. Roses by Leila Meacham--This one was on my Summer 2010 List, and I still haven't read it.
  2. Left Neglected by Lisa Genova--My Mom highly recommends this one.
  3. The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot--Another book that I've wanted to read for a LONG time (I even own it in hardback!), but I just haven't found the time. It has received excellent reviews, and I MUST read it!
  4. The Paris Wife by Paula McLain--Looks like my kind of book!
  5. The Reading Promise: My Father and the Books We Shared by Alice Ozma--I can't wait to read this one! Maybe it should be on the "Can't Wait!" list.
The rest of the list:
  1. State of Wonder by Ann Patchett--New release; getting lots of BUZZ and excellent reviews
  2. Dreams of Joy by Lisa See--Sequel to Shanghai Girls, an excellent book
  3. The Kitchen House by Kathleen Grissom--Saw this on Good Reads
  4. The Peach Keeper by Sarah Addison Allen--Same author of The Sugar Queen, a light, enjoyable read
  5. The House on Tradd Street by Karen White--To get me in the Charleston mood
  6. The Memory of Water by Karen White--More about the South Carolina Low Country
  7. Plan B by Jonathan Tropper--Stumbled across this book on Amazon
  8. Because of Mr. Terupt by Rob Buyea--Looks fantastic!
  9. The Dreamer by Pam Munoz Ryan--Received this as a gift from a teacher
  10. Caleb's Crossing by Geraldine Brooks--Her book, March, is one of my faves!
Must-reads that I want to re-read:
  1. The Help by Kathryn Stockett--Can't wait for this movie to be released on August 12th, my birthday! One of my ALL-TIME FAVORITE BOOKS!!
  2. The Book Thief by Markus Zusak--The book that I assigned my Pre-AP Freshmen at Poteet for Summer Reading. Nothing says "Welcome to high school" like a 576 page book! I miss teaching this book with all my heart. It's a life-changer, and my students actually read it and LOVED it--well, most of them.
  3. Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen--Movie = Good; Book = EXCELLENT!
  4. The Hunger Games Trilogy by Suzanne Collins--If you haven't read these books yet, then you must have been living under a rock. Start reading them now to prepare for the highly-anticipated movie that will be release next year!
  5. Out of my Mind by Sharon Draper--Just READ IT! You won't be sorry.
And there you have it. Okay, I admit that I am now very excited about this list. I am not making any Summer Reading goals because my last attempt at goal-setting was not successful. My goal is to read as much as I can this summer and see how many books I can add to my "read" pile. I want this to be more about the journey than the destination. By the way, if you have not joined Good Reads, then you are missing out! As I've said before, it's like Facebook for book lovers. Click on this link and it will take you to the Good Reads website, sign-up, and "friend" me. It's a great way to keep up with what your friends are reading and get recommendations. Do it! All of the cool readers are!

So it's time to grab my book (I'm reading two right now) and get busy.

Here's to a summer filled with relaxing reading opportunities...



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