At the beginning of this year, I made a list of “Reading Resolutions,” books that I resolved to read during the course of 2016. As we approach the last quarter of the year (how did that happen?), I thought I’d check in and what I’ve done so far, and what I’ve got left.
Well, the short answer is: uh, not so well.
Of the books on my list, the only one I totally finished so far is Kidding Ourselves, which I included in this Stack Overflow. And that perhaps is an appropriate title, because I realize I’m often kidding myself when I make promises about all of the books I’m going to finish in a given amount of time. I actually did get a ways into Parenting in the Age of Attention Snatchers, which I do think is an excellent book that changed the way I think about screen time and attention … but I have my own attention snatchers (including lots of other books) and I haven’t finished it yet.
I am eager to read The Three-Body Problem—my wife actually read it herself and has started on the second book, and when my parents were visiting, my dad ended up looking up the original version in Chinese and read it, so I’ve got a couple people to discuss it with as soon as I finish.
The other two on my list—well, I just haven’t started yet.
Part of the reason is that when I’ve got an idea for a themed column, I start looking for books that fit that theme, and then it takes me a while to read all the books I’ve gathered to write up that column. At the moment, I’m almost done reading Time Travel: A History by James Gleick, which is a fascinating examination of time travel in fiction and how it affects the way we think about time itself. More on that one when I finish!
I’ve got a stack of comics that I’ve read but some aren’t released yet, so I’m waiting until closer to release date to cover those. And I’ve got a few other time travel–based stories I finished but I was waiting to finish the above book (plus a few other titles I’ve got lined up) before putting them all together. And there are always a ton of picture books to include, of course.
So, I’ve got 3.5 more books to read in the 3.5 months remaining in the year. That shouldn’t be impossible, right? Right? This particular week I’m just trying to stay afloat—between kids starting school, my wife taking a trip, and attending the XOXO festival this weekend, I just plain ran out of time. So, stay tuned: we’ll be back next week with more books for you to add to your own stacks!