Two Read-A-Thons and a Final Challenge for 2011

When you think you can quietly (or not so quietly) enjoy Thanksgiving, Sinterklaas, and Christmas, there come the book bloggers with some more events to keep you busy.

Two read-a-thons and a getting ready for 2012 event. Maybe you want to join in! I do.

Thankfully Reading Weekend


Spend your Thanksgiving weekend (or if you don’t do Thanksgiving: it’s this coming weekend) reading!

There are no real rules: just to read as much as you can during Friday, Saturday and Sunday. There will be mini-challenges and giveaways.

You can sign up at Jenn’s Book Shelves HERE. Over 60 people already did! Hope to see you there!

Belated Readathon

The Belated Readathon is organised by Dead White Guys and The Souls of Thought and is “For Those Who Forgot About the Last One or Were Out of Town or Slept Through it or Whatever.”

The read-a-thon runs from 7am Saturday December 3rd until 7 am Sunday December 4th. A real 24 hour read-a-thon. So read into the early hours and join the other participants HERE.

Get Read-y for 2012

Get read-y for 2012

Not a read-a-thon, but a final challenge to get as many books off your shelves as possible, before the new year starts.

This is organised by Loving Books and runs for the whole of December, with weekly check-ins and a giveaway.

The goal is to reduce your to-be-read pile, and especially any review books that you haven’t got round to so you can start 2012 with a more manageable pile of books.

More information HERE and sign up on the Mr Linky on December 1st.

Will you find the time to participate?

Book Review: Divisadero by Michael Ondaatje

Divisadero by Michael Ondaatje
I read this book for the Book Bloggers Abroad Challenge. This writer was suggested by Mystica from Sri Lanka in her guest post on my blog.

I know Ondaatje’s most famous book is The English Patient but I thought I’ll go for a different book (I think I saw the movie of The English Patient). Unfortunately, the book has nothing to do with Sri Lanka. Even so, it was a good read.

Divisadero: What it is about

Divisadero is about a family made up of a father, his daughter Anna, an adopted daughter Claire, and a farm hand, Coop. They live in Northern California.

Book Bloggers Abroad 2011 ChallengeOne day, the relations between the family members are completely disturbed after a drama takes place at Coop’s cabin. Coop runs off while Anna is taken away by her father (and then runs off too).

Years later we find Coop and Anna back in completely different lives. Coop is a poker player while Anna is living in France researching the life of a deceased writer. Only Claire is still living near her father.

In France, Anna meets a gypsy who lives in a nearby field. He tells her the story of how he ended up where he is now. It turns out he knew the writer the Anna is researching. The last part of the book is about the life of the writer.

In the US, Coop and Claire meet by coincidence but the result of their meeting is very different from what they expected at first.

Divisadero: What I thought

The book was very well written but the first part went very slow for me. I wasn’t sure I was gong to like it, especially when Coop was in focus for a long chapter. I wasn’t interested in his life as a poker player. I was happy to see the book move on to Anna in France.

I really enjoyed the story of Anna in France. It felt quite idyllic: she lives in an historic farm house, meets a gypsy and researches the papers of a former writer.

According to other reviewers, there is a parallel between the life of the writer that Anna is researching and Anna’s family at home. I am too shallow a reader to notice this but it didn’t matter. The story was a good one anyway.

Book Bloggers Abroad Recap

Book Bloggers Abroad

Book Bloggers Abroad is over! Over the last half year, 26 book bloggers have shared their experience of reading and blogging in the country they live in. We have got to know them a bit better and also learned something of their country.

The feature has been very popular and many people are sorry to see it has now finished. But all good things must come to an end, and it’s better to end on a high!

Here’s a recap of what you’ve been seeing the last 26 Thursdays:

We went to every continent (except Antarctica) and visited 17 countries. 5 countries were visited more than once (but always with a totally new story). Most people were natives to their country but in a few cases we had people that had moved to the country from elsewhere.

The continents

AUSTRALIA (3): we visited Australia twiceRachel of And the plot thickens… and Amanda of Desert Book ChickNew ZealandCat of Tell Me A Story.

EUROPE (8): we visited GermanyRikki of The Bookkeeperthe UK trice – Jane of For Books ‘ Sake, Carly of Writing From The Tub, and Jackie of Farm Lane Books Blog; France Charlotte of The Book on the HillThe NetherlandsGnoe of GraaslandFinland Milka of Read.Read.ReadBelgiumAlexandra of The Sleepless Reader

ASIA (6): Indonesia Novroz of Novroz’ Favorite Things; Sri LankaMystica of Musings from Sri Lanka; Malaysia Kah Woei of The Books of My Life; India twice – Misha of My Love Affair With Books and Tes of Tes at Home; Philippines Chachic of Chachic’s Book Nook; and JapanNat of In Spring It Is The Dawn.

AFRICA (1): Ghana – Kinna of Kinna Reads.

NORTH AMERICA (7): USA five times – Belezza of Dolce Bellezza, Mari of Bookworm with a View, Esme of Chocolate and Croissants, Cathy of Kittling: Books, Colleen of Col Reads; Canada twice – Lisa of Star Metal Oak Book Blog and Lydia of The Literary Lollipop.

SOUTH AMERICA (1): BrazilLarissa of Larissa’s Life

I’m very grateful for all you bloggers participating: thank you very much. I think lots of people have found new blogs and new blogging friends through Book Bloggers Abroad and that is very nice.

What’s Next?

Book Bloggers Abroad 2011 Challenge If you like, join me in the Book Bloggers Abroad 2011 Challenge. Every week over the last 6 months, the featured book blogger left some recommendations about authors from their country. I’m planning to read some of those. If you want to find some new authors from all over the world: join me!

And the new weekly feature on Thursdays is going to be the Back of the Book competition. Each week, I will show you the back cover of a book and you’ll have to guess which book it is. You are invited to send in your own pictures of back covers! Hope you’ll join me in this crazy competition.

My Plans for the Book Bloggers Abroad 2011 Challenge

Book Bloggers Abroad 2011 ChallengeBook Bloggers Abroad is the popular weekly series where a book blogger tells us about their country and about blogging and finding the books they want to read.

Every guest poster left some suggestions of authors from their own country and it’s time to start reading some of them!

The launch post for the Book Bloggers Abroad 2011 Challenge is HERE. Sign up if you want to join in and read authors from all over the world!

I signed up for the Experienced Traveler level (10 books) and here is what I’m planning to read. My list is based on what I can borrow/reserve from the library. They are all writers that are new to me.

  1. Australia: Solomon’s Song by Bryce Courtenay (or another book by this writer).
  2. Germany:  The 13 1/2 lives of Captain Bluebear by Walter Moers.
  3. USA: The Blue Notebook by James Levine.
  4. Sri Lanka: Any book by Michael Ondaatje.
  5. New Zealand: A book with stories by Katherine Mansfield.
  6. Canada: Flashforward by Robert J Sawyer.
  7. India: The God of Small Things by Arundhati Roy.
  8. Canada: Barney’s Version by Mordecai Richler.
  9. Finland: Purge by Sofi Oksanen (also for Nordic Challenge)
  10. Belgium: The Invisible Frontier by François Schuiten and Benoît Peeters.

I’ll cross them off as I go along. This is my own challenge and therefore the one I HAVE to finish (such a pressure!).

Let me know if you’re joining in and if you’ve written a post about it just like this one, put the link in the comments of the original post about the Book Bloggers Abroad 2011 Challenge HERE.

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