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Resolutions, December's 2012 reads of a slacking pedometer geek

The old year has ended; the new one has begun. However, with the ending of the old is a report on the status of the resolutions before making any new ones.

To begin with, this pedometer geek managed to lose her pedometer midway through the month; thus, the step totals for December were some of the worst for the year.  I only managed to record a little more than 79, 900 steps which included only one day of aerobic steps.  Fortunately for this slacking pedometer geek, my sister Connie gave me a new pedometer for a Christmas present so that I am, once again, able to count my steps.  As an aside, she also purchased one for herself so she will also counting her steps.  Whether she becomes a true pedometer geek remains to be seen.

For the year, the high-water mark was the month of May when I logged over 276,000 steps on my pedometer.  My highest total for aerobic steps (over 68,000) occurred in June. Both January and December had the lowest step totals.  Coincidentally, those were the two months in which I lost my pedometer.  Overall, there is vast room for improvement in the new year, if only to keep hold of my pedometer.

In my resolution regarding my reading, I had mixed results. My main resolution was to read more books than the previous year.  Not only did I read more books in 2012 than in 2011, I had personally set myself a goal to read at least one hundred books, and I succeeded. Since I started recording the books I read, this was the most that I have read. Whether I ever repeat this feat or not remains to be seen.

I also had two bookcrossing.com challenges to complete.  In the first one, the SIY (set-it-yourself) challenge, I came up short.  I had chosen to read a particular fifteen books, but as the year ended, I was still reading three of them and had not even started the last one. Those four books as well as ten other books that I have chosen will make up the first quarter's SIY challenge.          

The other bookcrossing challenge that I participated in was the pages-read challenge.  Like the SIY challenge, it is a goal set by me.  I originally chose 30,000 pages to be read over the year, but when I passed that number a few months ago, I upped my challenge to 35,000 pages read.  While it was close, I managed to eke out 35, 145 pages read (based on the completion of books) for the year. 

During the month, I read (completed) a total of nine books of various genres including thrillers, YA, general literature, and nonfiction. Overall, it was a diverse group of reads.

In the month of December, I read (finished) the following books:

 Home for Christmas--Andrew Greeley     *

 Opal on Dry Ground--Sandra Scofield

 Bared to You--Sylvia Day     *

 The Serpent's Shadow--Rick Riordan

 Hiding in the Shadows--Kay Hooper

 Making it Up as I go Along--Maria T. Lennon

 Use All the Crayons: A Simple Guide to Happiness--Chris Rodell

 Harvesting the Heart--Jodi Picoult

 The Mark of Athena--Rick Riordan

While all are worthy of discussion, only a few will be highlighted.  First are the two YA novels written by Rick Riordan.  Riordan is known as the author of the Tres Navarre mysteries, but he has also added the title of YA and Tween author to his vitae.  In these two YA novels, he tackles mythology once again.  In The Serpent's Shadow he provides a satisfying conclusion to the Kane Chronicles which feature Sadie and Carter Kane battling the Egyptian gods to prevent chaos from destroying our world. In this series, he brings Egyptian mythology to the fore, and readers, young and old, will learn a great deal about all of the gods who ruled in Egypt.

The Mark of Athena is the third book in the series that features a mixture of Roman and Greek mythology.  Here, there are teen demi-gods (half human/ half god) battling their counterparts in wild adventures and quests in order to save earth and re-establish peace from these same gods and titans, who manipulate the lives of all. Since this is only the third book in the series, Riordan leaves the reader hanging as to the outcome of the saga.   Each of the series has a list of the gods so that the reader can keep all the mythology straight. Not only are they enjoyable reads, but a reader can only learn (or remember) the myths and legends.

The last book of note is Red Room's own Chris Rodell's book, Use All the Crayons: A Simple Guide to Happiness.  Presented in a humorous style, it is a delightful read.  He intersperses suggestions on ways to find simple things to do to make a person's world a bit more colorful with personal essays, called Colorful Day Diary entries, explaining one or more of his suggestions more fully.  We live in a serious world with serious issues and events that we hear about 24/7.  Rodell doesn't discount them, but he tries to lighten up an individual's world as counterpoint to all the seriousness. With all these pressing issues, a book with all its tips might just be the thing a person needs to read.  I've tried a few of them and intend to do more in the coming year.  Why don't you? Following Tip # 501, enough about that.

Enough about December's reads, too.  In a subsequent blog post, I'll reflect on the whole of 2012's reads, trends in reading, and my resolutions for 2013.

 

* SIY book   

Comments
6 Comment count
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Well done.

Nancy,

It sounds like 2012 was a rather terrific year and great preparation for an even better, happier, productive and prosperous 2013. That, at least, is my wish for you and yours.

George

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George,   I wish the same and

George,

  I wish the same and more for you and yours. 2013 will hopefully be a better, more peaceful year for all (with plenty of good reads thrown in for good measure). 

I have to say that although I read a fair number of books (and many of them e-books (about 50-55%)), some of them were not great literature.  In fact, I read some pretty trashy books, but I don't claim to be an elite reader only reading great literature and the classics.  Frankly, I only read 6 classics and/or 1001-BYMRBYD titles.  Defining my reads into categories and laying out my resolutions, that will be the essence of one of my next blog posts.

You are more of a quality reader and I follow your reviews faithfully, sometimes adding books to my list I would not known about and other times dismissing books I probably would have read but for your reviews.  I love your quotes from the books, too.  They add a dimension that defines your reviews.

Peace,

nan

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Great literature and good reads...

Nancy,

Great literature (and good reads, too) must reside in the eyes and minds of the reader. Your response got me counting and, if you include 'The World of Suzie Wong'--and of course I do--my "classic" reads for 2012 come to 5 out of 85... I.e 1/17... But your comment on reading the classics couldn't come at a better time. I"ve finally worked up the courage to begin Victor Hugo's 'Les Miserables'--inspired by the renewed 'grit' of a new year, and by the excellent film version of the musical stage play, recently released. I'm only brave enough to attempt the Barnes & Noble Classic (abridged) edition, though.

I will be very much looking forward to the blog post you promise, "Defining [your] reads into categories..." Another posting that would be interesting is one defining what it is that drives our choices of what to read next. It seems that, even with hundreds of titles already on my 'to read' list, I still wind up plucking next reads virtually out of the ether, and putting them at the front of the queue, without rhyme or reason.

Well, I think my iPad is trying to tell me to slow down with my typing on this 'virtual' keyboard. Please excuse if the reply gets posted more than once. I still haven't figured out how to edit or delete replies that slip by into blogland, sans intent, before their time.

Good reading always,

George

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Great literature and good reads...

Nancy,

Great literature (and good reads, too) must reside in the eyes and minds of the reader. Your response got me counting and, if you include 'The World of Suzie Wong'--and of course I do--my "classic" reads for 2012 come to 5 out of 85... I.e 1/17... But your comment on reading the classics couldn't come at a better time. I"ve finally worked up the courage to begin Victor Hugo's 'Les Miserables'--inspired by the renewed 'grit' of a new year, and by the excellent film version of the musical stage play, recently released. I'm only brave enough to attempt the Barnes & Noble Classic (abridged) edition, though.

I will be very much looking forward to the blog post you promise, "Defining [your] reads into categories..." Another posting that would be interesting is one defining what it is that drives our choices of what to read next. It seems that, even with hundreds of titles already on my 'to read' list, I still wind up plucking next reads virtually out of the ether, and putting them at the front of the queue, without rhyme or reason.

Well, I think my iPad is trying to tell me to slow down with my typing on this 'virtual' keyboard. Please excuse if the reply gets posted more than once. I still haven't figured out how to edit or delete replies that slip by into blogland, sans intent, before their time.

Good reading always,

George

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Great literature and good reads...

Nancy,

Great literature (and good reads, too) must reside in the eyes and minds of the reader. Your response got me counting and, if you include 'The World of Suzie Wong'--and of course I do--my "classic" reads for 2012 come to 5 out of 85... I.e 1/17... But your comment on reading the classics couldn't come at a better time. I"ve finally worked up the courage to begin Victor Hugo's 'Les Miserables'--inspired by the renewed 'grit' of a new year, and by the excellent film version of the musical stage play, recently released. I'm only brave enough to attempt the Barnes & Noble Classic (abridged) edition, though.

I will be very much looking forward to the blog post you promise, "Defining [your] reads into categories..." Another posting that would be interesting is one defining what it is that drives our choices of what to read next. It seems that, even with hundreds of titles already on my 'to read' list, I still wind up plucking next reads virtually out of the ether, and putting them at the front of the queue, without rhyme or reason.

Well, I think my iPad is trying to tell me to slow down with my typing on this 'virtual' keyboard. Please excuse if the reply gets posted more than once. I still haven't figured out how to edit or delete replies that slip by into blogland, sans intent, before their time.

Good reading always,

George

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George,   I just downloaded a

George,

  I just downloaded a free Kindle edition of Les Miserables myself.  I saw some facebook post about the free d/l and added it my list.  How soon I get to it...well, that remains to be seen.  I do want to see the movie and I am afraid that if I see the movie, I won't make it through the book (abridged or otherwise).  Hugo's book was one that I never intended to read because my father was named after the main character.  He absolutely hated his name and as a consequence, no one would dare read it in his presence.  I purchased a used copy from the annual book sale at the library a couple years ago, but never started it.  A bookcrossing friend was looking for a copy, and I sent it to her with the request that when she finished with it, to please return it as I wanted it back so that I could read it.  I figured I might get it back in a couple years, if at all. Now, with my e-book copy, I am good to go regardless of whether she sends it.

I am reading  Anna Karenina right now and am only a little more than a third of the way through it reading a few pages at a time (again, I wouldn't mind seeing the new movie of it, but again, after I finish it). I have plans to read other classics this year (working on quality rather than quantity), but I suspect that I'll still opt for the cheap, easy reads (romance, mysteries, thrillers, other pedestrian fare,etc). Frankly, I read to escape and sometimes I don't want to think too much.  I know a writer (not my husband) who only thinks that great literature and nonfiction should be read.  He looks down his nose at my reading tastes, and you know what, I don't care.  I read what I want when I want, and I think that you are right...there just may be a blog in that, too (why we choose to read what we do and when we do). Maybe you need to write that blog...what say you?  If not, I may tackle it in the near future after I clear my head of a couple others that are floating around and driving me crazy. 

Yesterday's blog, by the way, I had almost completed when I hit a wrong key closing the link and losing it all. Generally, I don't write them offline and upload; I type directly into the site and go from there.  You'd think I'd know better, but obviously not. Alas...

Happy 2013 reading,

Nan