Dewey's 24-Hour Readathon (October 2016 edition)

Readathon is here! Readathon is here!

I'll be updating this post throughout the day...

Readathon and I'm Ready for Action

It's one of the greatest reading weekends of the years, fellow bookworms: Readathon is nearly upon us! I'm so looking forward to taking a day away from reality to immerse myself in books, books, books. I've got a varied and ambitious stack: my main goals are to finish The Mothers, and catch up on a large chunk of The Count of Monte Cristo. But I've collected some other books that have been eying me (and a few shorties to help fill small gaps in the day) and I'm ready for action on Saturday:

Week in Reading: October 17th

Wow, remember when I used to write things? Yeah, me neither. It has been a minute. I'm hoping to ease back into some kind of regular flow with this old blog after an unplanned-for, unanticipated 3 weeks away. To recap: Since I've last been here, I've been on an overnight train (best thing ever), a conference in Chicago (where I spoke twice), a wedding, a baptism, a panel presentation for work, a half-marathon, and just about a few dozen off-site meetings. In between, I fought off a multi-day migraine (and by "fought off," I mean "laid in bed and whined a lot and did very little else of substance"), taper madness (the struggle is real), and a host of anxiety- (and election-) related ups and downs.

Suffice it to say, I haven't been reading much. Even when I've had the time (with taper comes more free time!), I haven't had the mental capacity for it, so I've taken to the kitchen, where the methodical process of chopping, dicing, slicing, stirring, baking, and transforming has been oddly and unexpectedly soothing.

Social Justice Book Club: Men We Reaped -- Midway Discussion

So we're halfway through Men We Reaped, and (as suspected) this is some powerfully heavy reading. But important, intriguing, and so far exceptionally compelling--I read this section in just about one sitting (and only partially because I was so far behind in my own schedule...). I'm particularly interested in Ward's decision to move forward and backwards in time, depending on the subject of each chapter, and I'm eagerly anticipating the moment when these two timelines intersect (which, based on her introduction to the book, I expect to coincide with her account of her brother's death). Some things to consider in discussing this book at the halfway-ish point:

Social Justice Book Club: Men We Reaped Kick-off & Introductions

Hello hello to all my Social Justice Book Club friends, new and old. I'm so excited to dive into this month's book, Men We Reaped: A Memoir, with all of you. For a bit of background on this book, here's what the publisher has to say about it:
In five years, Jesmyn Ward lost five young men in her life-to drugs, accidents, suicide, and the bad luck that can follow people who live in poverty, particularly black men. Dealing with these losses, one after another, made Jesmyn ask the question: Why? And as she began to write about the experience of living through all the dying, she realized the truth-and it took her breath away. Her brother and her friends all died because of who they were and where they were from, because they lived with a history of racism and economic struggle that fostered drug addiction and the dissolution of family and relationships. Jesmyn says the answer was so obvious she felt stupid for not seeing it. But it nagged at her until she knew she had to write about her community, to write their stories and her own.

Running Recap: Rick O'Donnell 5.22 Mile Trail Run & Ultra Challenge

This race recap is long, and not even remotely book-related. Consider yourself warned.

This past weekend marked my second time running the Rick O'Donnell 5.22-mile Trail Run & Ultra Challenge. Held in a gorgeous state park, the course is a 5.22-mile loop with just a wee bit of elevation gain:

Participants can sign up to run one loop, or take on the "ultra challenge" (run as many loops as you can in eight hours). Intending to run two loops as a training run for my upcoming half marathon, I signed up for the ultra challenge.

Social Justice Book Club: The Men We Reaped Sign-up & Schedule

We're gearing up for the October edition of the Social Justice Book Club. Based on participant input, we'll be reading Men We Reaped: A Memoir by Jesmyn Ward this month. In order to help keep us all on the same page (somewhat literally), I've outlined an (entirely optional) schedule for the month's reading below. I bumped start/end dates to Mondays instead of Saturdays, as I for one try to spend less time at my computer on the weekends than I do during weekdays. But feel free to post whenever works for you!