Reading August

AugustReads

Finally! I get to read what I want, no more reading lists! But since I was so busy with uni, the number of books I need to review or have made plans to read have stacked up. So I guess there’s a reading list this month, but it is of my own making!

Here’s some of what I want to get through this month:

extremely loud

Extremely Loud: Sound as Weapon by Juliette Volcler (transl. by Carol Volk)

I guess this is my Women in Translation read 😀 Currently reading it and it’s very disturbing indeed!

In this disturbing and wide-ranging account, acclaimed journalist Juliette Volcler looks at the long history of efforts by military and police forces to deploy sound against enemies, criminals, and law-abiding citizens. During the 2004 battle over the Iraqi city of Fallujah, U.S. Marines bolted large speakers to the roofs of their Humvees, blasting AC/DC, Eminem, and Metallica songs through the city’s narrow streets as part of a targeted psychological operation against militants that has now become standard practice in American military operations in Afghanistan. In the historic center of Brussels, nausea-inducing sound waves are unleashed to prevent teenagers from lingering after hours. High-decibel, “nonlethal” sonic weapons have become the tools of choice for crowd control at major political demonstrations from Gaza to Wall Street and as a form of torture at Guantanamo and elsewhere. (goodreads)

sunny

What Sunny Saw in the Flames by Nnedi Okorafor

Also published as Akata Witch. Everything Okorafor writes is amazing, so can’t ait to get started on this one.

What Sunny Saw in the Flames transports the reader to a magical place where nothing is quite as it seems. Born in New York, but living in Aba, Nigeria, thirteen-year-old Sunny is understandably a little lost. She is albino. Her eyes are so sensitive to the sun that she has to wait until evening to play football. Apart from being good at the beautiful game, she has a special gift: she can see into the future. (goodreads)

underground

The Underground Railway by Colson Whitehead

Cora is a slave on a cotton plantation in Georgia. Life is hellish for all slaves, but Cora is an outcast even among her fellow Africans, and she is coming into womanhood; even greater pain awaits. Caesar, a recent arrival from Virginia, tells her of the Underground Railroad and they plot their escape. Like Gulliver, Cora encounters different worlds on each leg of her journey. (goodreads)

Malice

Malice in Ovenland by Micheline Hess

You’ll never look at your oven the say way again!

Lily Brown is a bright, curious, energetic young girl from Queens, New York. She lives with her mom and loves reading and writing and spending time with her friends. But she hates cleaning! So, when her mom forces her to stay home for the summer instead of going off to some fun soccer or riding camp, Lily fumes. She wanted excitement and adventure. She didn’t want to do chores.Little did she know that the greasy oven in the kitchen was going to give her more excitement and adventure than she could possibly handle. (goodreads)

jemima code

The Jemima Code by Toni Tipton-Martin

Remember me gushing about Critical Food Studies here? I think it was Leslie who then recommended Jemima Code to me, so very excited for this one!

Women of African descent have contributed to America’s food culture for centuries, but their rich and varied involvement is still overshadowed by the demeaning stereotype of an illiterate “Aunt Jemima” who cooked mostly by natural instinct. To discover the true role of black women in the creation of American, and especially southern, cuisine, Toni Tipton-Martin has spent years amassing one of the world’s largest private collections of cookbooks published by African American authors, looking for evidence of their impact on American food, families, and communities and for ways we might use that knowledge to inspire community wellness of every kind. (goodreads)

yetunde

Yetunde: An Ode to my Mother by Segilola Salami

Part of my quest to give self-published lit and authors a shot. Psst, you can currently enter the goodreads giveaway for a copy.

Death is wicked . . .
Follow Yetunde as she narrates her mother’s ode to her grandmother. It is the Yoruba praise poetry for a mother known as Oriki Iya. (goodreads)

fears death

Who Fears Death by Nnedi Okorafor

Yes! More Okorafor! But you see, I HAVE to read this one for Diverse SFF Book Club.

In a far future, post-nuclear-holocaust Africa, genocide plagues one region. The aggressors, the Nuru, have decided to follow the Great Book and exterminate the Okeke. But when the only surviving member of a slain Okeke village is brutally raped, she manages to escape, wandering farther into the desert. She gives birth to a baby girl with hair and skin the color of sand and instinctively knows that her daughter is different. She names her daughter Onyesonwu, which means “Who Fears Death?” in an ancient African tongue.

ballad

The Ballad of Black Tom by Victor Lavalle

Our current read for Diverse SFF Book Club, I finished this one and it’s very good. Definitely need to check out Lavalle’s other works.

Charles Thomas Tester hustles to put food on the table, keep the roof over his father’s head, from Harlem to Flushing Meadows to Red Hook. He knows what magic a suit can cast, the invisibility a guitar case can provide, and the curse written on his skin that attracts the eye of wealthy white folks and their cops. But when he delivers an occult tome to a reclusive sorceress in the heart of Queens, Tom opens a door to a deeper realm of magic, and earns the attention of things best left sleeping. (goodreads)

miri castor

The Path to Dawn by Miri Castor

Opal is a young girl living in Dewdrop, a bustling suburb southeast of New York. Life is a constant struggle for her, until she befriends newcomer, Hope Adaire. With the girls’ friendship slowly beginning to grow, Opal’s life begins to change in mysterious ways, as the secrets of Hope’s enigmatic life begins to unfold. (goodreads)

policing planet

Policing the Planet by Jordan T. Camp and Christina Heatherton

Policing has become one of the urgent issues of our time, the target of dramatic movements and front-page coverage from coast to coast in the United States, and, indeed, across the world. Now a star-studded, wide-ranging collection of writers and activists offers a global response, describing ongoing struggles over policing from New York to Ferguson to Los Angeles, as well as London, Rio de Janeiro, Johannesburg, and Mexico City.
This book, combining first-hand accounts from organizers with the research of eminent scholars and contributions by leading artists, traces the global rise of the “broken-windows” style of policing, first established in New York City under Police Commissioner Bill Bratton, a doctrine that has vastly increased and broadened police power and contributed to the contemporary crisis of policing that has been sparked by notorious incidents of police brutality and killings. (goodreads)

It’s gonna be a busy month! What are y’all reading in August? Any particular plans?

Reading Challenges 2016

books

I have to admit that I have a sort of off-again- on -again relationship with reading challenges. On the one hand, I hate assigned reading and feel immediately restricted in my reading choices, on the other hand I love the community effort in challenges and that they help me stick to reading resolutions, if I make them.

After finally getting back to blogging regularly halfway through 2015, I feel a bit more confident that I’m here to stay and I missed the book blogging community, so I want to participate in a few more events and challenges. So, for 2016 I want to commit to 2 all-year challenges and then see what smaller events happen during the year.

girl with the dragon tattoo readalong

I decided to start 2016 with a bang and catch up with one of the hyped books I still haven’t read. So for January wonderful Deepika of Worn Corners and I will be doing a readalong of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. Everyone’s welcome to join in!

book riot

The 2016 Book Riot Read Harder Challenge sounds fantastic. I’ve been following the 2015 challenge and it looked like a blast plus this one challenges you to read more diversely and outside your comfort zone and since I had a wonderful time exploring new genres this year, I want to continue in 2016. Here’s a list with the 24 tasks, which challenge you to read a collection of essays, a book from the Middle East and a book by/about a transgender person among others.

hosted-by-Akilah-@-The-Englishist1

Diversity on the Shelf Challenge, hosted by Akilah of The Englishist

I read a good amount of literature by and about People of Color already, but I’m going for 3/4 of all books I’ll read in 2016, so I thought I’d join in this important challenge. There’s 5 different levels, so everyone can take part really, and I’ve decided to go for the 5th Shelf: Read 25+ books.

Here’s 5 books on my tbr that would count for the challenge, but I know I’ll have lots of fun looking for all the works that would count for this challenge, so be prepared for more list posts.

9780756410193_TheBookof_Phoenix_JK.indd

dirty river

bambera

haritaworn

Ashala wolf

What’s important to me is to read books by authors of color and non-white non-Western authors and not just books where white authors include characters of color. Hopefully I’ll read mostly books that are intersectional in their approach and include other axes of oppression, such as gender, sexuality, disability and empire. And I’m sure there’ll be lots of fun books, I know now that I’ll definitely find such diverse books in fantasy and YA literature.

I think 2016 will be a great reading year. Have a wonderful start to the new year!!! And let me know about your reading plans in the comments!

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?

It's Monday! What Are You ReadingThe meme that we use to share what we read this past week and what our plans are for the upcoming week. Now hosted by The Book Date.

Since I haven’t really posted since the readathon, I thought it was time for this meme, to get everything up to date!

Last Week

aristotleanddante

I needed to catch up on some sleep after the readathon and since I read a lot during that weekend, last week was of course much slower.  But I read through Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe between dinner and bedtime, it’s one of the best books I read this year, utterly amazing and I’ll definitely try more of Sáenz’ works.

Currently

fifth season

My copy of N.K. Jemisin’s The Fifth Season finally arrived last week and so I’ve been reading that, but I love it so much I’m trying not to finish it too quickly since I know I have to wait for the release of the sequel.

I recently finished two audiobooks and so I’ve been browsing audible, wondering what to listen to next. I finally settled on Carry On by Rainbow Rowell.

carry on

Since I haven’t read Fangirl yet, the beginning was a bit “what is going on!?” for me, but at least I’ve read all of Harry Potter, so it wasn’t too bad. I’m really enjoying the sense of humor, the narrator Eun Morton and I adore! Penny! I’ve been listening to it before bed and in the bath and have to force myself to do other stuff in-between.

Reading Plans

My tbr is insane, but some books I want to read in the next few weeks:

walls around us

ann lecke

excluded

And perhaps Bird Box and/or Agatha Christie’s Hallowe’en Party for Halloween. I need to start stacking some creepy Halloween reading.

What have you been reading? Any good Halloween book recommendations?

Dewey’s 24 Hour Readathon

24hourreadathon

Ahhh, I signed up for the readathon this Saturday! In all my years of book blogging I’ve never participated in the readathon, either the timing didn’t work or it just seemed too daunting. But I’ve always loved the tbr stacks participants posted and then I read Sharlene’s readathon post and was inspired to just jump in.

The best thing is that the readathon is from 2pm till 2pm in my time zone, which works great for me. I want it to be pretty relaxed, so I’ll definitely want to get some sleep and just curl up after brunch with the last book for some quick reading. Also, might actually get some laundry and work done before the readathon starts. I’m with my family over the weekend, so will need to be a bit social in-between obsessive reading bouts, but they’ll be readying the garden for winter anyway.

The prep stage appeals to me so much, I’m gonna swing by the market for snacks and such, perhaps even the small library (no hopes whatsoever) and the bookstore (only top 50 bestsellers in English), but that way I can remind myself why I chose the Scribd e-book flat. I also need more candles and not-really-but-always more tea. What? That’s completely normal reading prep!

Of course, I spent most of the day thinking of books to read during readathon. I’ve heard that lighter reads and shorter books as well as comics go a long way and while I’m not a slow reader, I hate to rush through and still want to feel accomplished, so that seems like a good idea. Since I don’t have access to all the books, my tbr consists mainly of Scribd ebooks. Well, drumroll, here it is:

readathon stack

Nope that is not what I think I’ll manage to read! My personal goal is to finish two books 😀 But I want a good selection from which to choose, depending on my mood. I chose Salsa Nocturna (which I’m a couple of pages in, but will just start again Saturday), because it’s the only Daniel José Older I have access to and it’s on Scribd till the end of October 17th only, so I’ll definitely be reading this one. Also by Mail is my second Diversiverse read and the event ends on Saturday, so my plan is to read and review it during readathon (sometimes you just got to be efficient).

I’ve also chosen two comics, that I’ve heard lots of great things about, Lumberjanes and Zombillenium, and since each part is very short I want to have them on hand to change things up. I was so disappointed that Binti was only available as audiobook, but then I checked the length and it’s only 2 and something hours and when my eyes get sore I’ll put on Binti and take a walk to get some air. In case I want some nonfiction, I’ve added I Mix What I Like to my stack, it’s about the decolonial and revolutionary potential of hip hop and mixtapes and that’s right up my alley. And two other books that I’ve been wanting to read, Artistotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe and Zahrah the Windseeker are there waiting for me to get bored or restless with the other books. But I think I might want to take my time with them. That’s the plan anyway, Saturday might go very differently though (wish me luck that I don’t end up with a migraine). But I’m super exciting!

Have you read these books? Are you joining the readathon? If so, what’s on your reading stack?