Apr. 21st, 2012

Readathon!

Apr. 21st, 2012 12:43 pm
wilderthan: ((Books) Stack)
A photo of me, fuzzy and sleepy, ready for the readathon


It's nearly time for the readathon! Here I am all ready for it, after a good long sleep in (bless the fact that the readathon starts at 1pm here), still all cosy in my jammies and dressing gown. I have no idea what I'm going to start with, and I suppose I will only know when I pick up my Kindle and find out what book is open on it. I'll let you know... Updates will be on this post, as ever, until it gets ridiculously long.

13:03: 1) What fine part of the world are you reading from today?

This time, I'm reading from Yorkshire, England.

2) Which book in your stack are you most looking forward to?

I'm not sure, since I'm mainly planning to wing it. I know I'll enjoy most of the ones I've definitely planned to read!

3) Which snack are you most looking forward to?

Mini Snickers bars. Om nom nom.

4) Tell us a little something about yourself!

I'm twenty-two, and I plan to make reading my career (in the shape of doing a PhD and then becoming a lecturer and researcher).

5) If you participated in the last read-a-thon, what’s one thing you’ll do different today? If this is your first read-a-thon, what are you most looking forward to?

This time, I'll stay up all through! Last time I just couldn't stay up all night due to medication, but this time I think I can manage it.

14:02: First book finished! The Unpleasantness at the Bellona Club, by Dorothy L. Sayers. Oh, Lord Peter.

Hmm, here's this hour's challenge:

1. If you could read any book that’s been translated into English in its ORIGINAL language, what would it be?

Oh, hell, that's difficult, because I can read most of the stuff I'm interested in, with glosses. I suppose something in Old French or Middle High German -- Diu Crône, by Heinrich von dem Türlin, maybe.

2. Include the original book’s cover if possible; if you want, also post the English cover for comparison.
3. Optional imaginary bonus points: post a sentence from the book in its original language.

Unfortunately, a quick google does not reveal any photographs or reproductions of the original manuscript, and I haven't got a dual-language edition. But it's a perfectly fantastic grail story, in which Sir Gawain is the hero.

Here's my review of The Unpleasantness at the Bellona Club, anyway.

15:11: Just finished reading an ARC from Netgalley -- Brook Street Rogues, by Ava March. And here's my mini-challenge response (although I can't win, as this one is US only)...

Book puzzle )

I'll tell you what it is in the next hour, if no one has guessed.

16:04: I'm now reading Sleeping Beauty, Indeed (ed. JoSelle Vanderhooft), and I just did this hour's mini-challenge. The day is just speeding away from me -- how is it past four already? I might actually have to get dressed...

16:46: Review of Sleeping Beauty, Indeed. I've been finished for a while, but I've been attending to business, like actually getting dressed -- and pinning back the annoying little bits of my hair that kept tickling my face. Also, not sure what to read next. I might take the last fifteen minutes of this hour to flirt with a couple of different books before settling down again.

17:09: Not much flirting was required! Tutankhamen: The Life and Death of a Boy King, by Christine El Mahdy, arrived this morning, just in time, and I think I'll read that now.
wilderthan: ((Books) Open book)
17:35: Yep, I did just spend the last twenty minutes putting together an answer for this hour's challenge.

A pile of books making the sentence 'The Fall of the Kings: Here Lies Arthur Under Heaven, Last Defender of Camelot; Nevermore The King Awakes'


"The Fall of the Kings: Here Lies Arthur Under Heaven, Last Defender of Camelot; Nevermore The King Awakes".

Yes, I racked my brains for ages to come up with an Arthurian one. Titles that nearly got in: Whose Body?, King Arthur's Bones, The Final Reckoning.

18:28: Just went off to have dinner, apply copious amounts of Bonjela to my ulcer (owww), and take some anti-spasmodics lest the dinner cause gallbladder trouble (fucking stones). Now I am back and about to start reading again, after spending dinner regaling my family with tales from Howard Carter's excavation of Tutankhamen's tomb.

Aaand the mini-challenge for this hour, to imagine how you would entertain the author of one of the books you've been reading...

1. Title and author of the book: The Unpleasantness at the Bellona Club, Dorothy L. Sayers.
2. The menu: the food, the beverage: It'd have to involve some very good wine. I could copy out the menu Lord Peter designs for Ann Dorland near the end of the book, but that would probably be cheating, though it's a known fact that Sayers gave Wimsey the things she wanted. Anyway, some very good wine -- aged for a decent period of time -- and, hmm, probably oysters and such things. The wine is the most important part.

19:15: Still reading about Tutankhamen. Here's my mini-challenge response for the hour, a 'found poem' based on the book I'm currently reading:

'three thousand year old
linen; tombs with paint so bright
it still seems fresh now

a thumbprint in clay
overlaid by the living
thumb of a woman

reaching back to the
past; opening the tomb of
knowledge long hidden

"Tutankhamen: the
Life and Death of a Boy King" --
Christine El Mahdy.'

20:40: Still on the same book! Here's my response to the mini-challenge of the hour, set dressing for my current read...

The 'set dressing' for my current #readathon book:  on Twitpic


21:54: First mini-challenge I'm not participating in -- I could, but I'm not interested in the prize. I'd rather someone who is get it. So anyway, still on the same book -- non-fiction always takes me longer. And I just got taken aside to have my eczema dressed with iodine to deal with some skin infections: three dressings on my arms and three on my face. I look ridiculous!

Share photos on twitter with Twitpic


22:43: Just finished the book on Tutankhamen. Review here.

23:18: Looks like I won back in hour five! I shall have to look at TBD and decide on a prize next time I'm feeling sleepy and unmotivated. In the meantime, just took co-codamol for my wisdom teeth pain, ugh. Whatever shall I read next?

00:09: Just took part in this hour's challenge. I'm now reading The Broken Kingdoms, by N.K. Jemisin -- I hope I'll get round to reading The Kingdom of Gods, the sequel, before the readathon ends: I'm meant to be going home on Monday morning, and I don't want to have to drag it back with me again.

01:13: Mid-event survey...

1) How are you doing? Sleepy? Are your eyes tired? I'm not sleepy, though I might be if I wasn't in intense pain! Yay, gallstones. Fun for all the family.
2) What have you finished reading? The Unpleasantness at the Bellona Club (Dorothy L. Sayers), Brook Street Rogues (Ava March), Sleeping Beauty, Indeed (ed. JoSelle Vanderhooft), Tutankhamen: The Life and Death of a Boy King (Christine El Mahdy). I'm in the middle of The Broken Kingdoms (N.K. Jemisin).
3) What is your favorite read so far? Hmmm, probably the Sayers: I always love Lord Peter.
4) What about your favorite snacks? I have nommed a Snickers bar or two, which has probably not helped with the aforementioned intense pain!
5) Have you found any new blogs through the readathon? If so, give them some love! I haven't really been looking at blogs; I tend to do that the day after. I've only wandered by the blogs belonging to the hosts of mini-challenges. They've all been very fun, though!

02:00: Bugger. I have to stop now, the pain is just ridiculous, and I had to take a painkiller that will knock me out. I'll rejoin if I wake up in time. Goodnight, all.

03:40: Can't sleep so I'm back to reading. Karen Maitland's Company of Liars.

05:23: Really enjoying this book, but taking advantage of an ebb in pain to try to sleep. Tempted to keep reading -- I don't think I'd have trouble staying up for the rest of the 'thon, but I do need sleep to get better...

12:50: I drifted in and out of consciousness for the rest of the night, but didn't get much more reading done. Here's the final meme.

1. Which hour was most daunting for you? Around 1am, BST. That's when the pain first hit.
2. Could you list a few high-interest books that you think could keep a Reader engaged for next year? N.K. Jemisin's books, definitely, and also Karen Maitland's Company of Liars -- that kept me engaged through the pain.
3. Do you have any suggestions for how to improve the Read-a-thon next year? Fewer US-only prizes. Instead of using Amazon.com for prizes, use The Book Depository, that ships almost worldwide.
4. What do you think worked really well in this year’s Read-a-thon? I really enjoyed the selection of mini challenges.
5. How many books did you read? I finished four, and dipped into another three.
6. What were the names of the books you read? The Unpleasantness at the Bellona Club (Dorothy L. Sayers), Brook Street Rogues (Ava March), Sleeping Beauty, Indeed (ed. JoSelle Vanderhooft), Tutankhamen: The Life and Death of a Boy King (Christine El Mahdy). I'm in the middle of The Broken Kingdoms (N.K. Jemisin) and Company of Liars (Karen Maitland), and dipped in and out of the audiobook of Good Omens (Neil Gaiman & Terry Pratchett).
7. Which book did you enjoy most? Hard to say -- I think I was most surprised by how much Company of Liars sucked me in.
8. Which did you enjoy least? I didn't read anything I really disliked, but the Christine El Mahdy was the hardest going.
9. If you were a Cheerleader, do you have any advice for next year’s Cheerleaders? I wasn't an official cheerleader, but I did drop some comments by. The best comments are ones that engage with what people are doing and reading: I had some lovely cheerleaders who tried to cheer me up when I was in pain, and some nice conversations about what I was reading. That works better than some kind of copy/paste "cheer".
10. How likely are you to participate in the Read-a-thon again? What role would you be likely to take next time? I will, and I'll be a reader. I may host a mini-challenge someday: it's a nice way to get involved and I like getting books out there to people who want them...

Now I'm going to settle down to a day of, well, reading.

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