Summer Reading 2017

I had forgotten that this used to be at thing: reading for fun, ya know? And that I used to document it (somewhat haphazardly). But now that my (first) thesis is done along with my (first) master’s degree, it might be tenable for me to pick up the habit again.

So, welcome to this year’s summer reading scheme!

After two years of graduate school including one year consumed by a thesis on publishing practices in late 19th century American, my goal for reading this summer is to HAVE SOME FREAKING FUN. I mean, school and research has been fun but I different type–you know what I mean.

If I happen to pick up some classics or whatnot, great. Maybe after a month of just-for-fun reading I will get the urge to expand my knowledge of modern plays (which I desperately need to do) or delve into resources for my next thesis (which I also should do), but to begin I am just reading whatever strikes my fancy.

I will post a my reflections on each book after finishing it. However, if you are looking for a list of reading recommendations I suggest you read this post or just check out the “books” tag.

(Re)Search Update

Hello Friends!

I am learning exciting things and while I am proud to that I am documenting them in a properly-MLA-formatted annotated bibliography, I wanted to document them here for anyone who might be curious about textbook printing practices in America at the start of the 20th century and how it pertains to Shakespeare. Continue reading (Re)Search Update

Summer Reading: This Book is Over Due

Confession time: I’m terribly tempted not to return the book, have it become over due, just so I can have this conversation with the workers at the library:

Me: Can you tell me what books I still have out?

Worker: “This Book is Over Due”

Me: I know, but can you tell me which one?

It’d be a riot. Anyways, about the content of the book…

Continue reading Summer Reading: This Book is Over Due

Summer Reading: All’s Well That Ends Well

If this play’s title had a subtitle, it would be “…But Does It Really?” After my first reading, I remember being thoroughly confused, frustrated, and disgusted at the trite simplistic ending, where perfect Helena ends up with the seemingly unrepentant scumbucket Bertram.

However, coming back to it several years later (and I’d like to think moderately wiser, at least in terms of Shakespeare), this play intrigued me. It really is such a bizarre little thing, that I don’t know how to articulate what it is or exactly how I feel about it, aside from perplexed. Continue reading Summer Reading: All’s Well That Ends Well

#SmallTales: Play

3 months of anxiety, 2 weeks of nightmares, 3 days of nausea, 2 sleepless nights, and 6 hours of hyperventilating.

Now, she lies on the floor as deep husky voice tells her to feel her muscles lengthen and loosen and fallĀ  through the floor for the last 15 minutes before she must abandon her sanctuary. But instead of dropping through the floor, images of dropped lines flood her mind bringing a tide of anxiety and nausea and nightmares and hyperventilating.

Trying to regain composure, her roommate’s question rings in her ears: Don’t you find it ironic that something called a “play” is ruining your life?

Summer Reading: Searching for Sunday

Reading the introduction, this book scared me. Within the opening pages, Rachel Held Evans captured my doubts, fears, and hurts regarding church and God more succinctly and confidently than I ever could.

Reading this book has held a mirror up to my own life (spiritual and secular), and while I have not always liked or understood what it has shown me, it is a reflection I need to examine.

Continue reading Summer Reading: Searching for Sunday

Summer Reading: Two Gentlemen of Verona by Shakespeare

Despite popular belief, there are a handful of Shakespeare plays that I have neither read nor seen–that is changing this summer in preparation for my upcoming adventure at Mary Baldwin College.

First on that list is Two Gentlemen of Verona. Coming into the play, I had some minor knowledge about the plot–something about love and betrayal–and had used one of Speed’s monologues as an audition piece (I know, bad form to take a monologue out of context and fail to get the whole story, oh well).

Continue reading Summer Reading: Two Gentlemen of Verona by Shakespeare

Summer Reading: Contested Will by James Shapiro

First book of the summer down! And what a lovely, gripping book it was!

Ever since my first introduction to Shakespeare in middle school, I have been aware of the authorship question. However, the topic never intrigued me quite enough to do significant research. I knew who the big contenders were–Earl of Oxford, Marlowe, Bacon–and why they were candidates–educated, intriguing, established. I could have a superficial conversation, but not much else.

Continue reading Summer Reading: Contested Will by James Shapiro