It’s been a year since I started reviewing books on this blog, so I thought I would write a retrospective post to celebrate. It all began with Richard Matheson’s 1971 horror novel Hell House which I chose to read for Neil Gaiman’s All Hallow’s Read. His idea was to gift a scary book to a friend for Halloween:
“I propose that, on Hallowe’en or during the week of Hallowe’en, we give each other scary books. Give children scary books they’ll like and can handle. Give adults scary books they’ll enjoy.
I propose that stories by authors like John Bellairs and Stephen King and Arthur Machen and Ramsey Campbell and M R James and Lisa Tuttle and Peter Straub and Daphne Du Maurier and Clive Barker and a hundred hundred others change hands — new books or old or second-hand, beloved books or unknown. Give someone a scary book for Hallowe’en. Make their flesh creep…”
-Neil Gaiman, Blog Post “A Modest Proposal (That Doesn’t Actually Involve Eating Anyone)”, Saturday October 23rd 2010.
So, I decided to give one to myself as a way of starting this blog.
I began by writing brief updates of my reading progress on Hell House. I finished the book sooner than expected, wrote a very brief review, and then ordered Stephen King’s The Shining (1977) to continue the theme of horror for Halloween. By this time, I had discovered some of the wonderful book review blogs that have inspired me to keep this little blog running. I was drawn to blogs that covered speculative fiction and since I was already a big fan of sf, I began reading and reviewing books of this genre. I have since found more and more quality blogs – too many to mention here – but the initial Big Four were, (and still are):
I cannot recommend these sites highly enough! Due to their inspirational posts and comments, generosity and downright friendliness, I am writing this retrospective today, one year later. Thank you for all the support, people!
Okay, time for some numbers.
Number of books read: 59
Number of books reviewed: 33
Number of books yet to be read (and growing at an alarming rate): 19
Personal Reading Challenges
I am disappointed with myself for not reading more BSFA winners, as this was my original reading challenge that helped get this blog rolling. Also, I wish I’d read more books by women, as the ones I did read were excellent.
I am finding it hard to stay focused on my reading challenges and not get distracted by *this-book-that-OO-recommended/raved about* or *that-book-that-keeps-popping up-all-over-the-place-and-why-haven’t-I-read-it-yet, -I-must-be-missing-out-on-something-incredible!* You know what I mean, right?
So, my challenges for Year Two (Nov. 2016 ~ Nov. 2017) of the Who’s Dreaming Who blog are:
-to read more books that fulfil my challenges;
-to read as many of my TBRs as possible;
-to write more reviews;
-to resist the endless temptation to buy more books, both paper and digital, (made more difficult now that I have a kindle and keep coming across those enticing special offers!);
-And to comment more on the blogs I follow.
It would be fantastic if you could join me on this continuing journey. Any comments or suggestions are very welcome.