TSS: Oh, D.E.A.R.!

Do you remember D.E.A.R? At my elementary school that meant “Drop Everything And Read,” something we typically did for 10 or 15 minutes every day. Best part of my day, really. As my TBR and Library piles are battling for supremacy and trying to sneak in around the review copies who have staked out places on my calendar, I’m thinking back to the simpler days of D.E.A.R., when I believed I had time to get to any book I wanted. And that, of course, got me fantasizing about a world where I really could just Drop Everything And Read for more than just 15 minutes a day.

I’m pretty sure to actually get through anywhere near the all of the books I’m currently excited about I’d need to be getting through at *least* 20 books per week and, well, that’s just not happening. So much I want to read for myself, and to share with all of you! So here’s what I’d be reading in the next few weeks if I could really just drop everything and read, at least this way I can share with you books that are exciting me now. In no particular order (links go to reviews that sucked me in):

On My Shelves:

The Lost City of Z by David Grann
An Unfinished Score by Elise Blackwell
Union Atlantic by Adam Haslett
Let the Great World Spin by Column McCann (recommeded by @suejustbooks)
Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close by Jonathan Safran Foer (recommeded by @suejustbooks)
Home Safe by Elizabeth Berg
Prayers for Sale by Sandra Dallas
The Girl Who Fell From the Sky by Heidi Durrow
The World in Half by Cristina Henriquez
Postcards from a Dead Girl by Kirk Fabrer

From The Library:

Kitchen Chinese by Ann Mah
The Kingdom of Ohio by Matthew Fleming
Flawless by Scott Andrew Selby and Greg Campbell
Hypocrite in a Poofy White Dress by Susan Jane Gilmore
Big Machine by Victor LaValle
The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie by Alan Bradley
This Book is Overdue! by Marilyn Johnson
The Swimming Pool by Holly LeCraw
The Tale of Halycon Crane by Wendy Webb
Angelology by Danielle Trussoni

Okay, so that’s 20 books, which is about what I would read in a FABULOUSLY good month. When you factor in books for review, readalongs, and That’s How I Blog, it becomes clear that I can’t remotely get to all of these any time soon. So, let me know, any I should ditch from my list? Any that should be given priority?

(By the way, I plan to make this a semi-regular feature here, so if anyone has any lovely ideas for a button, please let me know!)

Digiprove sealCopyright protected by Digiprove © 2010

32 comments to TSS: Oh, D.E.A.R.!

  • I know, it makes me nuts. And I keep accepting review copies, which is getting me nowhere! I just finished Let the Great World Spin, Jen, and it blew my mind. I’m getting my best panties out to throw at McCann. And Swapna said that Angelology was the best she’d read this year. You can’t ignore that endorsement.

  • I loved DEAR time when I was in elementary school. It was just so nice to be able to take a minute out of school and do something nice that I actually enjoyed. I’m sure not all of the other students felt that way though!

    I think you should read Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close or Hypocrite in a Pouffy White Dress next — I loved both of those books.

    • I’ve read both and I concur. They are must reads. ELIC is so touching and a quick read as some pages only have one word on them. The style is unusual but should not be missed.
      The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie, also not to be missed. I’m reading The Tale of Halcyon Crane per S.Krishna’s blog recommend and it is also a fast read.

  • I love the D.E.A.R. idea! Wouldn’t it be fun if someone could just yell “D.E.A.R” into the blogosphere and we all picked up a book from our TBR. :)

    I have the Girl Who Fell from the Sky on my can’t wait to read list, too. I’m going to read it in May because it came after the #ROOB deadline.

    As for something to drop from your list, I’ve read nothing on it. Most of it looks awesome to me, too. Embarrassment of riches, my friend.

    Have a great Sunday!

  • I’ve never heard of DEAR — great concept. You have some awesome reading ahead of you if only you find some of that DEAR time.

  • Jen-Girls Gone Reading

    Nick Hornby wrote a memoir a couple years ago about all the books he wanted to read. Hornby is, of course, a fantastic writer, so he was able to make even this mundane topic interesting. But thing that I loved the most about this memoir was the commonalities between his mind and my own. I THRIVE at the book store and the library. I grab ten books and do my best to narrow my selections down. My house has more books in it than most of my friends, and I love looking around to pick a new book to read. The thrill of the full bookshelf can lose its luster though when it feels like you are not getting much accomplished (or when I can’t decide what to read next).

    Here’s hoping that I become a faster reader (and find more time) in the year to come-

  • I never had this but I wish we did! I have so many books I want to read, too. It’s depressing knowing that there just isn’t enough time!

    I really want to read Angelology too. I don’t have it, but I keep seeing it in the store and it’s definitely calling to me.

  • Several of these are on my list to get to soon as well. But: Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie should be at the top of the list. It’s great.

  • There are so many books I want to read that I could probably read non-stop for the rest of the year and still not finish my TBR list. So many good books, so little time!

  • What a great list! I’m trying to ignore it because I keep adding to my wish list (and then I go into a book store and add to my physical TBR pile). I honestly do not remember D.E.A.R. but think we should instill it in the workplace too. After all, adult literacy is just as important as child literacy. Of course, it may be just my raging desire to find more time to read that has me thinking so…

  • @Suejustbooks

    I love this post! Many of these books I’ve either read or have on the TBR. In fact some of the ones on the TBR were at your recommendation (THE WORLD IN HALF and POSTCARDS FROM A DEAD GIRL). And of course I love the idea of D.E.A.R. which was before my time but enjoyed by my daughters!

  • Well I’m no help–the only one I’ve read is An Unfinished Score which I do recommend but I don’t know that I’d say it should be shoved to the top of the list. I do have most of them on the tbr list so I can’t wait to hear what you think.

  • I’m exactly the same way! I really can’t help with your list since I’ve only read one of those books.

  • I’m glad to know I’m not the only one who is drowning in books she wants to read!

    • Seriously. And there were so many more books I could have added, like the other 10 books out from the library, and at least 5 other books from my TBR I can think of off the top of my head. 20 books is the result of me being super picky.

  • We had DEAR at my school too. So much fun! Easily my favorite part of the day. The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie is a good one–enjoy!

  • I just finished The Tale of Halcyon Crane by Wendy Webb and LOVED it. I should have my review of it up this week. The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie was okay but not one of my favorites. Those are the only two off your lists that I’ve actually read.

    I stopped accepting review books while we are in the process of moving and I’m so thankful that I did – they were definitely taking over and I wasn’t getting around to the books that I just wanted to read for pure interest. Once we move I’ve decided I’m going to continue the break from review books for a while until I can catch up on some of my own reading.

  • The only one I’ve read is Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close and I found it too emotionally manipulative, though I did like certain aspects of it.

  • I have not read any of these books so I cannot offer any advice. Almost all of them are on my TBR list as well. Perhaps I can live vicariously through you as you are sure to get them before I do.

  • Don’t ditch anything on your list! Most of your list is on my TBR list. I have Big Machine on my nightstand now. Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close is a fantastic book. I suggest you read it first. I would love to dedicate just one day a week to reading as much as I wanted to. *sigh*

  • DEAR was my favorite time of the day too, which is why, even though I teach 7th grade and not elementary, we DEAR every Friday. :) Kids are really finding out reading can be cool.

  • I put in my vote for The Lost City of Z because I used to work with David Grann and he is the nicest guy in the world. Plus, his book rocks!

  • I admire your ambition! And I am very honored to be on your list. Have fun!

  • Amy

    We did not have D.E.A.R. at my school – maybe it is only an American thing, or maybe my school just sucked the big one? – either way, very disappointing. The only two that I have read are Flawless and The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie but I loved them both.

    • Well, it seems that not even all American schools had it. One of my schools had something they called SSR – ‘silent sustained reading’ – but that sure doesn’t sound as inviting as ‘drop everything and read,’ does it?

  • Oh, dear … we didn’t have DEAR. The district my kids are in now don’t have it either, which is disappointing. It’s such a clever acronym and an important concept (yes, they read, but without the fun DEAR incentive)

    Your list is fantastic! I’ve read several on here (all great), and have several on my own wish list.

  • At my elementary school, my 4th grade teacher called it USSR–uninterrupted, sustained, silent reading. She had a sign she’d put on the door and everything.

    In a supremely awesome month, I get through 8 books, which is not nearly enough to keep pace with my TBR pile. Although most of the time it makes me anxious, sometimes it can be comforting, knowing how many possibly great books I still have left to read!

    • One of my elementary schools had SSR, I’m really amused by the fact your teacher called it USSR!

      I agree that it wavers between awesome and anxious-making. Right now I’m in the phase where it is making me anxious. If any more good books come in this week I may have to curl up on the floor and cry.

  • The World in Half is wonderful and I hope to read the other 3 someday…

  • […] Posts and Discussions Oh, D.E.A.R. “Discovering Madame Grandin’s Chicago” – guest post by Mary Beth Raycraft, […]