In the High Peaks

Friday, August 13, 2010

Back on the Blog Hopper Circuit!

The wonderful blog Crazy for Books has me back for a weekend of blog hopping. It's supposed to be in the mid-to-high 80s this weekend and I'm not one for hiking and bushwhacking in that weather! Oh, how I miss bushwhacking! I know lots of you in hotter climes will laugh at me because you endure temps that are much hotter. I do feel badly for you, truly.

So--This Week's Blog Hopper Question: How many books are in my "To Be Read" Pile?

Why, scads and scads, and piles and piles, of course! I don't think I'll count them all, but I will indulge myself, with wine glass in hand (please make it a mellow merlot), to peruse the shelves and piles of books unread.

Will I read a book out of my TBR pile this weekend? Highly unlikely, because I went to two libraries today and brought home more than a dozen books! But, and this is a big but, readers. I'm trying to read, or at least scan, as many memoirs written by young people as I can for my first-year college students who have signed up for my "Reading and Writing Workshop" course. These are students who need a year of intense work in reading and writing to be brought up to what is considered "college level."

I'm having fun preparing for this particular course, because the challenge is huge.

Anyway, we're going to begin reading and writing journals and diaries. Then we're going to move on to reading memoir. And writing about the memoirs we read. That's the beginning of the course. I brought home some genocide memoirs, written by survivors in Rwanda and Darfur, in particular--because I know these memoirs the least.

I found A Long Way Gone: Memoirs of a Boy Soldier by Ishmael Beah, who now lives in the U.S. I have heard hints of problems with authenticity, and I will study these comments and complaints. Isn't authenticity always an issue with memoir? Another title is The Translator: A Tribesman's Memoir of Darfur. by Daoud Hari. Have not heard a single rumor of authenticity problems there.

My students will choose to read one book from a long list. Living up here in the mountains, it's easy to be removed from the world. But, at 18, they have all become citizens of that world. When I have my complete memoir list, I'll share it with you, and perhaps you'll suggest a book or two to for me to add to the list.


  1. Mid 80's? I wish! We hit 100+ as well as 100% humidity every day here in Southeast Texas. Makes you wonder why we don't just up and move! Feels like a wet blanket slapping you in the face when you walk outside...that's why I stay in and read! :)

  2. Hi, visiting from the HOP and a new follower! What a great idea for your class. I look forward to the list. (You might check out my Holocaust blog for a title or two.)

    I hope you will have time to come by and visit one of my two blogs: Holocaust Resources or Library Cats Book List !!

    Have a great weekend!

  3. Stopping by from the Hop to say hello (and become a new follower)! I like the idea of a class where, through reading, you become a citizen of the world.