Read-a-thon Recommendations

I'm not able to participate in this year's Dewey's Read-a-thon tomorrow, as Saturdays are a working day for me, but I will be reading Meg Wolitzer's The Uncoupling a bit this morning before I go to work.

I do, however, have some helpful tips (and book suggestions) for those of you who are.

1. Start small. Start with a short book. I highly recommend a graphic novel or middle grade title. I began my first read-a-thon with the first Diary of a Wimpy Kid book, which was perfect. Especially if you're not a morning person. Finishing a book in the first two hours is exhilarating.

2. Finish one. I never manage to finish a book before the read-a-thon, so I'm usually in the middle of one. When you pick it up next, it's a lovely sense of accomplishment to finish a second book (even though you didn't start it during the read-a-thon.)

3. Aim big in the early afternoon. Around this time, I start getting excited and wonder how many books it's possible to finish in one day. Usually I spend the afternoon indulging myself in whatever I feel like. It's often a mystery, as they hold my attention so well.

4. Finish small. After the sun sets, it gets harder to keep reading. It's a lovely time to return to lighter fare, graphic novels, and children's or young adult books. It's okay to stop.

Books that would be awesome during the read-a-thon:
1. Bad Marie by Marcy Dermansky (it's awesome and short: under 250 pages)
2. The Lover's Dictionary by David Levithan (also awesome and also short: under 250 pages)
3. One Day by David Nichols (it's awesome and the structure--one day each year--makes it unputdownable.)
4. How to Understand Israel in 60 Days or Less by Sarah Glidden (deep but short graphic novel)
5. Special Exits by Joyce Farmer (beautiful, haunting graphic novel)
6. Room by Emma Donoghue (my favorite book of 2010; unputdownable)
7. Freakonomics by Steven Levitt & Stephen Dubner (fascinating, quick non-fiction read)

Also awesome: Plays

Happy reading!

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  1. oooh great recommendations and tips!! This is my first "official" participation in the read-a-thon so I will definitely be keeping those in mind.

  2. I'm not able to participate either (house-hunting weekend, which requires a 6 hour car trip each way with me and the kiddos). Excellent recommendations, especially Bad Marie, Room, and Freakonomics! (Only because I haven't read the others.)

  3. I read Bad Marie for the last read-a-thon and I agree that it is a great choice. I will not be able to participate this time around either, unfortunately.

  4. Great tips! This is my first read-a-thon so I'm crazy excited.

  5. Ooh, I have One Day, but didn't have it in my pile! I will have to add it on now.

    I'm sorry you're missing out! Hopefully you won't be working Saturday for the next one.

  6. Great advice and recommendations. We'll miss you!


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