What I Did
I read from Friday afternoon until Sunday afternoon.
I finished every single book I started.
I did more than just read this weekend. I also attended a graduation, went to the grocery store, watched an episode of Doctor Who, proctored ballet tests, observed dance classes, ran errands, visited a used book sale, and went to the library. I went to the library three times during the challenge and once more afterwards.
I read both outdoors and indoors. While outdoors, I read and walked simultaneously. I walked no less than 8 miles during the challenge.
What I Read
The Fold by An Na - A Korean-American teenager considers having blepharoplasty. Teen fiction. Since I started this book before the marathon officially started, I only counted the portion I read in the afternoon towards my page total.
Thank You, Lucky Stars by Beverly D'Onofrio - A fifth-grader prepares for the school talent show with her new eccentric friend after her long-time best friend ditches her for a more popular girl. Juvenile fiction. I dug the music and movie references, especially those about Singin' in the Rain and Dirty Dancing.
Piper Reed, Navy Brat by Kimberly Willis Holt, illustrated by Christine Davenier - A family of five moves yet again due to the father's job with the Navy. Juvenile fiction. Cute story. I've added it to my sisters booklist and plan on reading the next book, which comes out in August.
The Secret World of Alex Mack: Witch Hunt by Diana G. Gallagher - On Halloween, Alex must disguise her identity and her powers. Juvenile fiction. I used to love this show. I still haven't seen the final episode, but that's another story.
The Princess and the Peabodys by Betty G. Birney - A medieval princess finds herself in a modern-day household. Juvenile fiction. This should totally be paired with The Wizard, the Witch, and Two Girls from Jersey by Lisa Papademetriou.
The Cooley's Anemia Foundation Storybook by Craig Butler, illustrated by Tess Elliot - A collection of fairy tales retold and fears confronted. Juvenile fiction. Great cause.
The Treasures of Weatherby by Zilpha Keatley Snyder - A twelve-year-old boy, whose growth has been stunted due to a heart condition, lives in an old mansion with his odd distant (literally and figuratively) relatives an befriends a curious girl. Juvenile fiction. Written by one of my favorite childhood authors. My favorite Zilpha book is The Egypt Game.
Kissing Kate by Lauren Myracle - For years, Lissa and Kate have been the very best of friends. Then Kate kisses Lissa at a party, and their routine is thrown completely out of whack. What did it mean, for each of them, and for both of them? Can they even be friends anymore? Teen fiction. Awesome book alert. This is Myracle's first novel, which I've been intending to read for years. Her writing is reminiscent of the works of Sarah Dessen. Fans of Dessen's The Truth About Forever will love reading about Lissa's job with the catering company and her unlikely friendship with an unabashedly eccentric girl named Ariel. Most realistic book read during the challenge.
Sarah Simpson's Rules for Living by Rebecca Rupp - Her parents are divorced. Her dad moved to California and remarried a woman who's not even old enough to be her mom. Her real mother is dating (though she says she's "just friends") with a guy that's kind of a hippie and who has a five year old little boy. The book is told in a series of diary entries, beginning on New Year's Day and concluding at the end of the school year in June. Sarah goes from twelve to thirteen, prepares for and performs in a mythology play with her classmates, and writes plenty of lists. Juvenile fiction. My favorite rule: "Don't trust anybody but cats."
Roxie and the Hooligans by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor, illustrated by Alexandra Boiger - Roxie's uncle is a world traveler, and she loves hearing his stories as well as reading a survival book written by one of his associates. All of those stories and tips come in handy when Roxie finds herself stranded with four bullies from her class. Juvenile fiction.
Exposure by Patricia Murdoch - Julie's classmate Dana makes fun of her weight, her clothes, her everything. When Julie's brother goes to a party where Dana and many other girls get caught doing things on camera, that camera ends up in his possession, and Julie must decide whether to mortify her enemy with the incriminating photos or help her. Teen fiction.
Uncle Pirate by Douglas Rees, illustrated by Tony Auth - Wilson often gets picked on at school. After his uncle, an adventurous pirate, shows up with a talking penguin named Captain Jack, everything changes - especially after they come with Wilson to school. Juvenile fiction.
The Baby-Sitters Club #117: Claudia and the Terrible Truth by Ann M. Martin - While baby-sitting for new clients, Claudia gets a weird feeling about their father. She then worries that he might be abusing his sons. Juvenile fiction. I love the BSC.
The Baby-Sitters Club #96: Abby's Lucky Thirteen by Ann M. Martin - Abby and her twin sister prepare for their Bat Mitzvah. Abby also finds herself accidentally involved in a cheating scandal. Juvenile fiction. Yay for telling the truth, and yay for having a Bat Mitzvah in mainstream fiction.
The Baby-Sitters Club #93: Mary Anne and the Memory Garden by Ann M. Martin - In the small town of Stoneybrook, everyone knows everyone. Thirteen-year-old Amelia's family is involved in a drunk driving accident, and while her parents and younger brother emerge with non-life-threatening injuries, Amelia killed instantly. Her classmates and the members of the BSC, deal with the grief in different ways, then create something special to honor Amelia. Juvenile fiction. Sad. Despite the title, there's very little about the memory garden, actually; that kind of came at the last minute.
Kat Got Your Tongue by Lee Weatherly - After an accident, a teenager suffers from amnesia. She doesn't recognize her mother or her friends, much less herself. The chapters alternate between now (Kat's current struggle to regain her memories) and then (Kathy's diary entries). Teen fiction. Most intriguing book read during the challenge. I also want to honor it with: Best cover art and design. Kudos to Tracey Hurst and Jerry Paris for the book jacket.
The Bronze Pen by Zilpha Keatley Snyder - An aspiring young writer is given a pen that has unusual powers. Juvenile fiction. Written by one of my favorite childhood authors. I liked this more than Weatherby (see above) because it was more like something I'd write myself and had a more satisfying conclusion.
Identical by Ellen Hopkins - Identical twins burdened with family secrets and private problems. Teen fiction. Multiple forms of abuse - parental, self-inflicted; physical; drugs, alcohol, eating disorders - make this a heavy book. At 565 pages, this was the longest book I read during the challenge.
My Swordhand is Singing by Marcus Sedgwick - A woodcutter and his son deal with villagers, gypsies, and the newly risen dead. Juvenile fiction. This is the stuff of legends; mythology buffs will appreciate this nice take on vampire stories.
The Robe of Skulls by Vivian French - With the help of a bat, a girl escapes from her stepfather and stepsister (who happens to be a werewoman) and meets the Ancient Crones. Meanwhile, a wicked woman and her dimwitted troll stir up trouble, and a prince (who is usually in trouble) tries to help his orderly brother, who, along with other young royals, has been turned into a frog. During their quests, their paths cross. Juvenile fiction. More humorous than the title and cover imply; thankfully, the skulls are not real.
Turtle Feet, Surfer's Beat by Marina Kuperman - A family goes to Costa Rica for the father's photography assignment. The parents sign the kids up for a volunteer job observing sea turtles. The daughter falls for a surfer boy. Teen fiction.
Click! The Girl's Guide to Knowing What You Want and Making It Happen by Annabel Monaghan & Elisabeth Wolfe - Visualize, organize, prioritize. Teen non-fiction. I liked the blank forms for writing and organizing exercises and additional room for notes at the end.
Main Street #3: 'Tis the Season by Ann M. Martin - Orphans Ruby and Flora celebrate their first Christmas without their parents. Their friends also have troubles in their own family. Juvenile fiction.
Recurring themes: Echoes. Locked metal boxes. Twins.
I wish I had read more. I'm serious.
I would have read more if I hadn't had other things to do, but I gladly spent a little over 4 hours on Saturday morning doing something else. (Dance studio! Ballet slippers! Opportunities!)
I started reading at 1 PM on Friday. I would have read more books if I pushed myself to stay awake late each night, but I am extremely happy to report that I got a full night's sleep both nights. (This is rare!) I finished a book at 12:56 PM on Sunday, 4 minutes before my cut-off time, then promptly fell asleep. My eyes needed the rest, and so I shut them and took a nap. In fact, I napped on both Friday night and Sunday afternoon. I never nap unless I'm sick, and even then, it's hard for me to fall asleep. Speaking of which, I woke up around 3 AM on Saturday and forced myself to go back to sleep until it was a quarter to 7.
23 books read
about 20.5 hours reading
almost 2 hours reviewing
approximately 3965 pages read
around 193 pages read per hour
average of 3 pages read per minute
In other words: I read really quickly.