Revisiting: I Love Big Books

Confession: I haven’t finished Lonesome Dove (yet).

So instead of posting my Part 3 Recap and my formal and final book review this week, I’m going to talk a little about big books and why I haven’t finished Lonesome Dove.


When I really consider it, I think the primary reason that (Lonesome Dove was driving me crazy and) I haven’t finished it, is that books are a social outlet for me. Which means a few things that I want to get out in to the open here:

1. I feel the need to read a lot of books

Between this blog and the people in my life who know I enjoy reading and recommending books, I feel the need to be turning over books much more quickly than one per month. Not all of the books I read are books I’d recommend, and I get asked for a lot of recommendations, so having read only one book in the last month, I found myself feeling upset that I didn’t have much to offer by way of book recommendations. This is 100% a self imposed pressure, but being able to recommend good books to friends is one of the things I enjoy most about my hobby, so I want to make sure I can do that.

2. I feel disconnected when I’m reading one book for a long time.

I definiteyl struggled to feel like I could or should post to my instagram or my blog this month– or in real life, have good conversations with my book friends! It really started to wear on me and make me feel disconnected from this community.


So to touch back on my original post, when I professed my love for big books for the very first time: A few characteristics that stood out in the books I was discussing at that time were readability, action, the feeling that pages were flying past, and the quality of the book (, which, tying it back, made it recommendable and therefore extra worthwhile.) My general feeling when I wrote that post was that the quality of the book was often increased in a long book because the character development and plot had more time to develop. I’m beginning to think that long books that are good for me when a story and a set of characters needs the length, but long books for the sake of being long may not be for me.

While I enjoyed Lonesome Dove (the 90% of it that I’ve finished so far), I wouldn’t say that I recommend it. It’s length came from the fact that it never found a central story line, but rather followed each character to wherever they may go, leading it to tell about five stories in one. While it was well written, it didn’t feel concise or efficient, which is (apparently) they way I need books over 800 pages to go.

So to summarize 🙂 , I’m not giving up on long books and I’m going to continue to not be fearful of long books, but if a book is going to take a month, I need to space it out. I need the feeling of turnover in my reading life, and those long books aren’t going anywhere. I’ll continue to read them over time, as I can.

Do you have thoughts on this topic? Let me know!

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Feel Learn Wonder Bookish Gift Guide

Happy Holidays Readers! If you’re anything like me you love the holidays and all that comes with them. This year I wanted to share a few bookish items that would make great gifts whether you’re treating yourself, putting together a list for your fam, or trying to get ideas for that other bookworm on your list!

Year of Wonder

[Full Disclosure: I received this book from Harper Books for free, but this is not a sponsored post. This book, The Year of Wonder, was the inspiration for this post in the first place, so I figured I’d just throw it out there first.]

I think this book would make a great gift for anyone with an interest in classical music, whether they’re a newbie like me or a certified expert! The idea is that each day of the year has a dedicated song and essay in this book, and throughout the year you can grow your knowledge and appreciation of classical music. I want to save most of it to enjoy throughout 2019, but I will say that I read the page for January 1st and listened to the song about 7 times. The music seems to be available on Spotify and there is a dedicated Apple Music playlist you can download!

Books!

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And now, on to the obvious. My criteria for giving a book as a gift is pretty simple in theory, but can sometimes be a little limiting. In short a book cannot be too sad, too violent, too potentially offensive, or too racy. That doesn’t mean it needs to be boring! For those on your list who need books meeting those criteria, here’s my list of six favorite books of 2018 that gift well to others:

Totes!

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If 2018 was the year of anything in the book world it was the year of totes from publishers! I personally love my Riverhead Books tote and have seen a whole bunch of designs out there by others.

Book Journals!

Trust me, book people love to journal and track. 🙂 I saw two new designs for 2019 that piqued my interest, including one by Book Riot for their Read Harder Challenge that they host annually, but never had a formal tracker for before!


And there you have it – there’s a quick rundown of some of my favorite things for every bookworm on your list 🙂