I watch a lot of TV. I watch quite a few movies. I used to read a lot of books. You wouldn’t guess it by looking at the past few years, wherein I read one book in 2013 (and it was a book of cat cartoons), two books in 2014, and one in 2015. By those measures, this was a good year!
May I present to you, the whopping three books I read in 2016.
1.The Orca Girl: A Fantastic World of Hidden Creatures by Brandon Williams
Brandon Williams paints a beautiful picture of the Alaskan landscape in this story about a an old man remembering the mythical creature he befriended as a boy. While it could use a heavier proof-read, there are some nice turns of phrase and there’s a certain reality to it as we see childhood friends from very different worlds now separated by a lifetime. And his dip into the fantastic has just the right amount of whimsy for the story being told.
In the interest of full disclosure, I feel required to point out that I’ve known Brandon for about 20 years. We met in middle school and were fast friends, but even if we weren’t, I’d still say this probably one the best 32-page stories you can get for 99 cents at Amazon. Or for free, if you’re an Unlimited subscriber. Check it out here.
2. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone/ 3. Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets by J.K. Rowling
I’ve read these before, hence the italics. I keep thinking that someday I’m going to read Harry Potter and just feel over it all. Like, entertainment will just be so oversaturated with JK Rowling’s Wizarding World that I’ll be sick of it, or the words that once seemed so perfect will now seem suddenly childish and uninspiring. Hasn’t happened yet, though!
I belatedly started re-reading this series, hoping I might dash through them in time to read Harry Potter and the Cursed Child. Clearly, I did not make it. But, it’s one of my goals for this year. I’ve mostly managed to avoid spoilers for Cursed Child — though not the overwhelming sense that so many people hated it — and I’m looking forward to revisiting some of my favorite novels in the series along the way.
The Long Haul update and other plans
So…if you remember last year about this time, I did a post announcing my next Long Haul project: The Star Wars EU (now Legends series). You also might have noticed that there hasn’t been a single other post about it in the past 12 months.
That’s because I am struggling with A New Hope, y’all. It’s 178 pages, I started reading in January 2016 and Alderaan hasn’t even exploded yet. I think my max is reading about five pages, getting sick of it and not picking it back for a month and a half. And then reading a page or two. Lather, rinse, repeat.
This right here? This is my fear for the Harry Potter universe. I’ve already got about five pages of notes on how disappointing this read-through is, including a glossary of words I had to look up, because apparently George Lucas subscribes to the idea of the bigger the word, the better it must be.
But I promise you, right here, right now, that I will finish this book before the month’s out. I’ll just take all that Rogue One enthusiasm and momentum and let it carry me through all the UGH that is this book. And I suspect The Empire Strikes Back will be much better. And maybe, if I’m really lucky, I’ll actually get to an EU book this year. I see you on my shelf, Truce at Bakura, and I’m coming for you.
But Star Wars and Harry Potter won’t be all I read. Unless I get particularly caught up in a series and can’t tear myself away, my intention is to rotate between HP, Star Wars and books on the 2017 PopSugar Reading Challenge. I first mentioned this in the Movie Challenge post I made with my sister, so check that post out if you want links. She ultimately chose the BookRiot challenge, but I liked these categories better.Mostly because, even though I’m a classic introvert, there’s a little part of me that sometimes likes social interaction, and I’m kind of itching to talk to a librarian and have them recommend something to me. I have no delusion that I’ll get through all 40 challenges, let alone the 12 bonus challenges, but at this point, I’d call even reading one of these books a win. I’ll post my updates here, and you can follow Sis on Twitter @dmcole78.
And that’s it for the 2016 Media in Review series! I wish everyone a happy, healthy 2017 with all the books, movies, TV shows and time to enjoy it all that you could possibly want.
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