“I find television very educating. Every time somebody turns on the set, I go into the other room and read a book.” ― Groucho Marx
Well, it’s August 28, 2020, and the eighth month of perhaps the weirdest year in recent memory is receding swiftly into the proverbial rear-view mirror of our lives. As political divisions, racial tensions, and a global pandemic continue to mar much of what we call the “civilized world,” it’s no surprise that millions of people look for solace in music, movies, television shows, video games, and books.
“I declare after all there is no enjoyment like reading! How much sooner one tires of any thing than of a book! — When I have a house of my own, I shall be miserable if I have not an excellent library.” ― Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice
If you have come across this blog since I created it five months ago, you know that I enjoy all of these leisure time activities, but reading has always been my “first love.” I don’t remember when I first started reading, but family lore claims that my maternal grandmother taught me how to read before I was two years old.
Or, as my late mother used to joke, “Alex, you were born with a book in your hands!”
Anyway, while I can’t claim that I’m reading more due to the changes in the household routine caused by the COVID-19, August has seen me read quite a few books, none of which I have finished because, like my mother before me, I tend to read various titles at the same time, reading a bit from one book here, another bit from another there.
“If one cannot enjoy reading a book over and over again, there is no use in reading it at all.”― Oscar Wilde
Currently, I am reading six books, most of which I have acquired over the past few months. One, Red Storm Rising, is an old favorite that I first read in 1986 and one that I revisit often – I used to re-read it once a year, but I don’t think I’ve read it from cover to cover since Mom died five years ago.
Most of the other titles on my To Be Read (TBR) pile are books that I’ve bought this year to add to my ever-growing library. Some are light, “fluffy” Star Wars novels, while others are more substantial non-fiction works, mostly about history that shaped our world and continues to affect current events.
“So many books, so little time.” ― Frank Zappa
I probably will finish The Looming Tower in a few days; that’s the book that I have read the most this month. I have Red Storm Rising in three formats (audiobook, e-book, and print), but I just started re-reading and listening to it, so I don’t foresee myself finishing it until October unless I put everything else on hold. That’s not likely to happen, though.
I also don’t see myself finishing the Tuchman books any time soon, even though I made some progress with The Guns of August earlier this month. I probably could finish the Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker novelization by September 10 as it is a well-written and fast-paced piece of light reading material.
As for Sand & Steel, I just received that book yesterday, so I doubt that I’ll finish it before mid-September, as it is a rather large hardcover book about D-Day. If I didn’t have other interests in life I could finish it faster, but I do love to write, watch movies, and get in some gaming in my daily routine.
Well, that about wraps it up for the August 2020 reading list. Tune in sometime in late September to see if I have made any progress with this TBR, as well as what new books I have acquired and started reading.