Starting to Compile my Goals for 2018 Reading.

I have a Kindle and I also read on my Overdrive app on my phone (Overdrive in Canada does not loan Kindle books). I also do occasionally borrow physical copies if I can’t afford or can’t borrow the e-book.  But my Kindle is where the love remains, mostly.

While I do have a goal of “Number of Books” to read, I’ve also decided to create topical goals to keep me interested.

  • Read a Book or Series Recommended to me by my In-laws.   They have good taste in literature and I’ve rarely been disappointed reading something they’ve put on my radar. This year it is the Gamache Series by Louise Penny. My husband has been reading aloud and I’ve been reading along with him on my Kindle.
  • Read at Least 2 new (to me) Public Domain Reads from Project Gutenberg.  I have already read a great many classics and have favorites. However there is always more to discover in literature that has stood the test of time and become “classic”.
  • Read a Book that Appears to Sympathize with a Concept I Disagree with.  The title “Adultery” by Paulo Coelho. I noticed a comment by someone who is currently reading it that says it looks like the author is making excuses for reasons why people commit adultery.
  • Read a Cozy Mystery Series in order.  My current choice, subject to change, is the Savannah Reid series by G.A. McKevett.  Even if I don’t finish all of the books, I want to read them in order.
  • Re-read one Old Favorite.  This will be the least difficult goal to accomplish. I mostly reread so this is not really a challenge, but a no-brainer.
  • Read 2 or more Young Adult novels.  I like young adult novels, and this will be fun. I hope I read something new that I will enjoy.
  • Read one Stephen King Novel. I’ve only ever read one novella of his. “Rita Hayworth and the Shawshank Redemption” (from which the 1994 movie was adapted). This is contained in his Short Story compilation “Different Seasons” I want to read a whole novel. I’m pondering the most recent one “Sleeping Beauties” that he co-wrote with his son Owen. (Again, subject to change). His genre is usually not something I am attracted to.

This is very different from last year. But last year made me realize that I needed to give myself specific goals rather than just “randomly pick whatever” (Using the “Smart Goal” way of thinking).

Books

In my year (in which I posted very little) I discovered something about my criteria for what makes me want to read a book. CONTENT RATING! Similar to how movies and TV shows are rated (on IMdb for instance). with a heads-up advisory about what you might find in it.

There doesn’t seem to be a lot of support in the book world for this type of thing. Especially if you happen to be “thinking of the children”. Said concerned people are often told, “Whatever gets them reading! Why censor?”

I’ve always been puzzled at the hypocrisy about how video games get rated, Movies get rated, television shows get rated, and parents who place certain boundaries and limits on what they allow them to watch or play are applauded. To admit doing the same thing with books and people blanch and are horrified. What is so sacred about books that they get a free pass in letting certain content in?

I don’t agree (in the slightest) with banning books, but I do agree with parents and potential readers being warned of sensitive content (rape, violence, explicit sex, swearing and cursing language). As of the date of this writing, neither Goodreads, nor Amazon has such a segment where users can add such things. You have to comb through hundreds of reviews, and maybe you will find one that warns about sensitive content.

My children are all grown now, and they make their own choices about books.

My primary concern is for my own self. I’ll be reading all about a recently published book, and believing the story is right up my alley, will promptly put the book on hold at the library. Then 26 pages or so in, Person A will grab Person B’s xyz and a lot of gasping and groaning happens and continues for a dozen pages before the actual story continues.

I also don’t want to be limited to Christian literature, (I am a Christian but I don’t want to be preached at in my literature, I want morals to just be a given rather than a finger wag), baby books, YA literature (much of which also contains some sensitive scenes).

So I’ve joined some “Clean Reads” groups on Goodreads. Because it appears that I am not alone.

My tastes in what I watch and read have started to align more with my core morals. Not because I don’t believe in FUN, but because it’s a law of nature that we reflect upon and dwell on things which have entertained us and moved us, and I want to keep the clutter out of my mind, and enjoy the good things in life.