Exciting news for this week: As of last night, I read my fifty book mark, the halfway point in the 100 Books Challenge! Considering that I didn’t start until April, I’m not making bad time. Finally, some progress in a challenge! Now it’s time for me to buckle down and work on the others. (You can see my progress by clicking on the challenges in the sidebar.)
In other news, I got one prediction correct: I finished The Eyre Affair the evening after I started it. Unfortunately, Margaret Campbell Barnes’ Within the Hollow Crown is just not holding my attention the way Brief Gaudy Hour did. Perhaps simply because Richard II interests me less than Anne Boleyn? I’m only a few chapters in, but I have enjoyed comparing Barnes’ treatment of certain historical personages to Anya Seton’s in Katherine.
When I put down Within the Hollow Crown, I instead picked up some YA and children’s lit: Lacy Makes a Match, Spellbound, and Somebody’s Horse. The former is another Patricia Beatty book (like Melinda Takes a Hand), the second of the trio I remember, and one I purchased for my own collection. Her books can be difficult to find in print, so when I link to them, they may be from another online store besides Powells, my bookstore of choice. Spellbound was my first Christopher Pike book, and I thought a fitting start to revisiting those YA favorites. I don’t intend to recap them heavily, as those can be found elsewhere, like at the highly entertaining Like Pike. Somebody’s Horse was written by an Oregon author my stepmother worked with, Dorothy Nafus Morrison, so my copies of her books are all inscribed. They’re excellent for the horsey set, and all set in a very authentic modern West. I picked up another Morrison, her first novel Whisper Goodbye, but it’s enormously depressing, so I put it back down.
After all those slim YA books, I picked up a heftier novel, one I’d toyed with reading for a while, Robin Maxwell’s Mademoiselle Boleyn. Unlike many AB novels, Mademoiselle Boleyn is entirely confined to her early life, particularly at the French court before her return to England. I wasn’t entirely thrilled by it.
Between readings, I managed to get posted entries for The Bearkeeper’s Daughter and Dark Angels, the last two leftover from last week’s reading. I also got The Eyre Affair and Lacy Makes a Match up, and have two more ready to go, leaving me only one behind at the moment. I might actually be caught up in entries by tomorrow! Famous last words … .
As of today, I am still reading Within the Hollow Crown, and have a fresh stack of library books to work on. The first I picked is Everything is Illuminated, from my 1% Well-Read Challenge. Because it takes my full attention, though, I also picked up a newer Rosalind Laker to read before bed, To Dream of Snow. I think I might be unable to resist Sharon K. Penman’s When Christ and His Saints Slept when I finish the Laker, and after that, who knows?