Summer reading… end of vacation looms

For me, summer ends at midnight, August 31st. I’m busy with doctor visits and paperwork, trying to get the boring stuff out of the way before I start writing again.

I love this time of year so much…. no matter how old I get, it feels like I should be getting ready for school. Thank God I don’t have to. My sympathies to all of you are are cramming in your required summer reading right now and making up journal entries about it.

Did any of you like your summer reading books? If so, what were they? What made them great?

What was the most boring summer reading book ever? What made it so bad?

33 Replies to “Summer reading… end of vacation looms”

  1. The worst summer reading book was one that I didn’t actually finish- it was a book called “Magdalene,” and it was about Mary Magdala. I thought it was going to be a fantastic feministy religious studies nerd romp, but it wasn’t… it ended up basically being a retelling of the “she became a prostitute and her live sucked and it was all her fault and JESUS SAVED HER!” story.

    However, I (started and) finished “The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time” yesterday, and thought it was fantastic. Highly reccomended.

  2. I had to read a history book called “Birth of the Republic” once. I didn’t read a word of it. In fact, I wrote the paper off the reviews combined with the back of the book. I got an A though. In fact, come to think of it, I didn’t read many of the summer reading books, ever…though I did remember reading and loving Alas, Babylon…

  3. I feel fortunate that my assigned summer reading book was a good one; all incoming freshmen at the University of Scranton (Go Royals!) had to read The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini. I was honestly shocked by the quality of the writing and how it affected me personally. The story felt natural during the progression of the novel and it seemed that I was in Amir’s shoes.

    I read (or attempted to finish) a few novels for pleasure during the summer: “The Touch” edited by Stephen Altman, “The Awakening” by Kate Chopin, and “The Stand” by Stephen King. Sadly, I was only able to finish reading “The Touch.” I will finish reading the other two books during my free time because I am in absolute love with their respective voice, characters, and detail.

  4. As a junior enrolled in a public Indiana high school, I have never heard of summer reading set forth by schools until very recently. Although, being an avid reader myself, this has not affected whether I’d read in the summer or not. Perhaps instead of doing so much standardized testing and being disappointed with the results, our state should set forth required summer reading instead of whining and testing some more.

  5. I didn’t have any assigned summer reading… everything I read was purely of my own volition. However, I will say that I just finished Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist by Rachel Cohn and David Levithan, which I thought was wonderful. A few weeks ago, I read King Dork by Frank Portman, which had so many great reviews, and I didn’t like it. I thought it was boring and a little obnoxious, actually.

  6. I had to read To Kill A Mockingbird. At first I thought it was really boring, but I got into it as I got farther into it and I really liked it. The rest of the books on my list were chosen by me. Nothing too exciting.


    P.S. Welcome back.

  7. I think the worst summer reading book I had was “The Sound and the Fury” by William Faulkner for my junior year AP class. It was the only book I’ve ever had to use CliffNotes for, I was totally lost.

    A close second was “The Once and Future King” by T.H. White. It’s a 1000-page modern take on King Arthur, which might have been much more interesting if I’d been reading it for myself, but really, that’s way too long for summer reading, even if it was for an AP class.

  8. I didn’t get to read much, because I’m planning my wedding all by myself, but what I did read was good. I got done a lot more than I thought I would!

    And this is the first year in 20 that I don’t have to go to school. It’s so weird…

  9. hi. i didn’t hate your book. i actually really like your book. i was just angry. it hit really close to home and hurt me. i was assigned to read it, but i wish i could’ve read it on my own time when i was ready, i think it would’ve been easier.i know it’s fiction. but right now, it’s not easy for me to accept that. it’s not easy for me to accept that i am not all by myself.

    i’m sorry if i hurt your feelings, i didn’t mean to. like i said, it just hurt. i think (i hope) you understand what i’m saying right now. you actually are a good writer, and it was a good book. i’ve actually read it 3 or 4 times. but it just hurts… and i get angry about it, i can’t control my temper sometimes. i just wanted to, well, speak.

    again, i’m sorry if i hurt you’re feelings (and you’re right i was pretty harsh).

  10. No, my feelings weren’t hurt…. but I was a little startled. There is a reason I write fiction instead of memoir. You get to pretend in fiction, and I like that.

    Speaking up is a good thing to do. Keep doing it – it’s healthy.

  11. Suggestion – peek in a box. Or in that giant black thing that takes up the center of the apartment. Those things that are not the cat are called books.

    Stef will explain how to use them.

  12. First off…you went to DD after I finished working! 😛 And the family says “Hi!” and *HUGS* to Joyce.

    Second, I was finally able to read a bunch of books I wanted to this summer: “The Giver” by Lois Lowry , “Slaughterhouse Five” by Kurt Vonegut, “The Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy” series by Douglas Adams, “The Tipping Point” by Malcolm Gladwell, and “Blink” by Malcolm Gladwell. Also, I just started “Animal Farm” by George Orwell and hope to finish it before I go back Friday. Not sure which one was my favorite, but the last two books of the “Hitchhiker’s” series weren’t all that great. He left a bunch of loose ends in the last book that I thought should have been addressed.

    little quirk 🙂

  13. i read looking for alaska(it was good), great expectations (awesome), snow falling on cedars (really good), the awakening(ok),

    now im treading the 3rd sisterhood book and the truth about forever

  14. I read Independence Day by Richard Ford. Good. Not as good as Richard Russo’s stuff, who has a somewhat similar but more accessible style, but it was very far from a waste of time. I might read it again one day.

  15. Best book this summer: THE BOOK THIEF by Markus Zusak
    Runner up: THE PERKS OF BEING A WALLFLOWER by Stephen Chbosky

    Worst book this summer: THE A-LIST by Zoey Dean

  16. Crucible: McCoy Provenance of Shadows David R. George III

    Its a special Star Trek paperback book celebrating Trek’s most famous and well loved TV episode City on the Edge of Forever…..

    It STARTS with McCoy saving Edith Keeler (instead of being stopped by Kirk and Spock-)and he moves forwards with his life being STUCK in the 1930’s

    The other chapters begin from when they DO allow her to die as she was meant to which saves the universe (and Starfleet) and then in THEIR present day THEY too move forward in time performing their duties (following many of the most famous TV episodes and beyond)

    Both chapters flip flop back and forth as the author follows both time paths of past and present….(the year 2270 present day)

    Not finished as yet but it’s a very original take on the Kirk/Spock crew and so far well worth the time.
    So far it has romance- time travel-plenty of action and alot of interesting character studies.
    Also be forewarned theres TWO additional books coming in this trilogy (one in November and the third in Feb 2007)

    Well, thats what I am reading— you did ask— (chuckle)

  17. Ahh the Once and Future King…I was assigned that the summer before ninth grade…it didn’t get finished. Good story, time period I’m fascinated with, but, to me, the writing was just…bleh.

  18. Re: Crucible: McCoy Provenance of Shadows David R. George III

    As a card carrying trekkie (unfortunately, very literally) I second that review. It’s awesome so far. I really like the character play. I love the book so far.


  19. Summer Reading

    No… I didn’t like my summer reading books. They were The Autobiography of Ms. Jane Pittman by Ernest Gaines and Into The Woods by somebody else. They were both boring and I had to answer something like 150 questions per book. I think my math teacher is paying my English teacher to make her subject more popular.

  20. To Kill A Mockingbird

    We had to read this last year in 10th grade, and I loved it! Scout and her brother really reminded me of my brother and sister, and I loved how the book really showed how they grew up.

  21. Awesome books!

    We read Great Expectations in 9th grade, and I loved it! The story kept turning and grabbing my attention.
    I read the third Sisterhood in one day. It was good, but not as good as the others. The girls cried on like every page.
    The Truth About Forever is good, as are all of Sarah Dessen’s books. Dreamland is my favorite of hers.

  22. OMaM

    We had to read Of Mice and Men for AP English and write a two page report about how one of the characters alienation revealed society’s moral values and beliefs at that time period taht was due the first day of shcool.

    I don’t really like Steinback (I don’t think I’ll ever finish The Grapes of Wrath), and the book wasn’t one of my favorites, but I liek what the book MEANT, the message it brought across.

  23. My summer reading was Roots, by Alex Haley. At first, I wasn’t looking forward to it, mostly because of its length. It turned out to be a great book, though, and I really enjoyed reading it. I also just read The King of Attolia, which was AMAZING.

  24. boring summer reading book

    I thought that the most boring summer reading book I had to read was definitely The Odyssey because it was SOOOO slow. Oh well. It’s over. =)

  25. I absolutely second that. It’s so amazing. I stayed up until about 2:30 a.m. finishing it , but I couldn’t stop crying for another 40 minutes. It’s incredibly powerful.

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