Tagged: DiverseLit

2014 Preview: Diversity, CanLit, Classics, and Second Chances

I’m still catching up on 2013 reviews, but 2014 reading is well underway. Here’s what you can expect this year on Reading in Bed.

Diversity!
I am pretty dismayed that off all the books I read last year, only 12% were by authors of colour. Here are some of my current and planned reads that will help tip me over 25% this year:

orendabridgeofbeyondinside outsixmetres

  • The Orenda by Joseph Boyden. It’s my current read and HOLY CRAP IS IT GOOD.
  • The Bridge of the Beyond by Simone Schwarz-Bart. nybooks.com says: “This is an intoxicating tale of love and wonder, mothers and daughters, spiritual values and the grim legacy of slavery on the French Antillean island of Guadeloupe.” Yeah. Plus, that cover.
  • Inside Out: Reflections on a Life So Far by Evelyn Lau. An excuse to write about how Lau’s first memoir, Runaway, changed my life.
  • Six Metres of Pavement by Farzana Doctor. My favourite calendar girl in Bare it for Books.

Follow book blogger Leonicka for lots of resources on diversity in Canadian literature. She’s going all out and reading 85% authors of colour this year!

Local Authors!
My next local read will likely be Come Barbarians by Todd Babiak. As for new #yegwrites stuff, so far I’m looking forward to Marina Endicott‘s fourth novel, Falling for Hugh and Laurence Miall‘s debut novel Blind Spot.

Here’s a great roundup of Edmonton books in 2014.

CanLit!
Apart from the Edmonton stuff, here’s my most anticipated CanLit:
frog musicthegirlwhocrimeagainstmy

  • Frog Music by Emma Donoghue. She’s got a way with titles. I loved Room and Slammerkin, so my expectations are high.
  • The Girl Who Was Saturday Night by Heather O’Neill. I’ve been waiting eight years for O’Neill to write another book. Bring it on!
  • Crime Against My Brother by David Adams Richards. Apparently brings the main character of Mercy Among the Children back – one of my favourite books of all time.

I will also solider on with the Storytellers Book Club challenge. It helps that I won a set of all five books in their contest last year!

Classics!
I haven’t forgotten about The Classics Club! In fact, I’m right on pace. I chose 50 books to read over five years, and approaching the one year mark, I’ve read eleven.

I’m also contemplating Behold the Star’s Russian Literature Challenge. Krisitlyn of Reading in Winter gave me War and Peace for Christmas, plus I hear reading Chekhov can improve your life.

Back from the DNF

tristramcovertinkerThe English Patient by Michael Odaantjehouseofsandfifthbusiness

I might set this one up as a challenge hosted here on the blog. I’ve abandoned a few books over the years, and this is the year I give them another shot. I’m including books that I straight up DNF’d (did not finish) and books that I finished, but didn’t really appreciate, often because I read them too young. Here is a sampling, with my excuses for not finishing in the first place. Watch for an introductory post soon (and if anyone wants to help me design a button, that would be cool…)

  • Tristram Shandy by Laurence Sterne: Pregnancy brain
  • Tinker Tailor Solider Spy by John LeCarre: Baby brain
  • The English Patient by Michael Ondaatje: Too young. Attempted at 22 or so and got really lost.
  • The House of Sand and Fog by Andre Dubuois III: Too young. Read at age 20.
  • Fifth Business by Robertson Davies: Too young. Forced to read in high school, I hated it. Read a description of it recently and it sounds AMAZING.

This sounds like a lot of books, but I’m leaving room for random books, recommendations, read-alongs, and review books; you know, the four Rs. 

Obligatory end-of-post question: what are YOU planning to read this year?

 

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