It seems like reading challenges and I aren’t meant to be. I love the idea of them and there are so many to choose from, but alas my fickle reading brain chooses what it chooses and I just go along for the ride. I was so sad not to have completed the Once Upon a Time II challenge, because it is such a great challenge and I thoroughly enjoyed myself last year. This year I was into a non-fiction/Moby Dick mood when the challenge came around and I only got to one of the books on my list. I did actually read a second, but after I finished it, I realized I must have jumbled a couple of reviews in my head, because the book was not fantasy like I thought, oops!
I was going full steam with the Short Story Challenge and then somehow I stopped taking the bus and got out of the rhythm of reading my stories. But, I’ve started back up again. A few weeks ago I read “Year’s End” by Jhumpa Lahiri. She is one of my favorite short story writers and this story lived up to my expectations. Her style is unique and her depictions of family relationships are spot on. I can’t wait to read her new book Unaccustomed Earth. Because of a little library serendipity, I stumbled across a story called “In the House of the Seven Librarians,” by Ellen Klages. I found it in the 2007 Years Best Fantasy and Horror. It is a sweet and funny story about a group of librarians who continue on running a library that has been closed by the town. Everything goes along much like it did before (minus the patrons) until they are given a baby girl in lieu of an overdue fine. As a librarian, I tried not to bristle at the stereotypes, but there was a fair amount of library humor to be had.
Finally, I’m debating about joining the Japanese Literature Challenge. I’m sure I’ll finish at least one book for the challenge in the very near future. I was reading a review of After Dark (Haruki Murakami) over at Stainless Steel Droppings, and after I finished reading Carl’s review, I headed right to the stacks to grab the book as well as After the Quake. I can tell it’s not going to take me much time to finish this one.