Readathon fun

I never officially signed up, but my daughter and I found plans were canceled for the day, so we did a bit of reading while we were home.

Reading during read-a-thon with a 5 year old can be daunting, so you have to just go with the flow.

In this case, we read 2 kids books, did some crafts, and I read about 79 pages of my own book.

For her, we read Pizza and Other Stinky Poems and Stuck on Fun, which is also where the fun crafts came from.

I was reading The Forgotten Room by Karen White, Lauren Willig, and Beatriz Williams.

All in all, between the crafts, laundry, and her swim team practice, I’ll count this as our first successful read-a-thon together.

I mostly participated this year on Twitter, which is unusual for me. However, I found it easier than working on the blog while trying to read with my daughter.

How did you do?

Dewey’s 24-Hour Read-a-Thon Wrap Up 2015

I decided at the last minute that I wanted to participate even though I knew that I would be gone most of the day.  I had a plan — read poetry and kids books — and stick to it.  The read-a-thon started for me at 8 a.m., so I had time to read before we left and while on the road, and I did, for the most part.  And then, I had time to read when we got back from Maryland Day.

Books Read with Wiggles:

Books Read on my Own:

I went to bed in hour 15, but we also were out for much of the day and participated in a more relaxed way before and after out daily plans.

My daughter enjoyed all the books we ready, but the one she can mostly read (through memorization at age 4) on her own is Zippy the Ant.  I enjoyed Pride & Prejudice: Retold in Limericks the best!  No least favorites for either of us.

What did you do for read-a-thon?

Dewey’s 24-Hour Read-a-Thon

Today is the beginning of Dewey’s 24-hour Read-a-Thon.  Although I have other plans today, I will be reading off and on with everyone and cheering people on when I can.


1) What fine part of the world are you reading from today?

USA, Washington, D.C.

2) Which book in your stack are you most looking forward to?

Finishing up Camelot’s Court by Robert Dallek, and if I finish it I will consider it a successful read-a-thon.

3) Which snack are you most looking forward to?

Grapes…and coffee…I love Dunkin Donuts French Vanilla!

4) Tell us a little something about yourself!

I loved my Keeshond like he was a child, but with a little toddler running around, I realize caring for a dog was much easier.

5) If you participated in the last read-a-thon, what’s one thing you’ll do different today?

I like to keep my participation laid back; that’s what I’ve learned over the years.  To just have fun!

Blackout Poem Challenge:

THE Chilean poet Pablo Neruda, known for his love poems and leftist ideals, died 40 years ago this September. One would hope he’d be at rest by now. But on Monday, as classical musicians played a Neruda work set to music by Vicente Bianchi, his remains were exhumed to determine whether he died from poison — instead of prostate cancer, the conventional account.

In recent years, other icons of the Hispanic world have suffered the same fate. In 2011, Salvador Allende, Chile’s democratically elected president-elect who was deposed by a military junta in 1973, was disinterred to verify that he’d fatally shot himself. (The finding — yes — is still disputed.) The late Venezuelan president Hugo Chávez ordered in 2010 that the tomb of his idol, Simón Bolívar, be opened to test his theory that the liberator died of poisoning, not tuberculosis. (The theory remains unproved.)

And in 2008, a Spanish judge authorized the unearthing of a mass grave in the southern town of Alfácar to see whether Federico García Lorca, the poet and dramatist who was assassinated by Fascists in 1936, at the outset of the Civil War, was buried there. (The results were inconclusive.)

There is something gothic, but also cathartic, about summoning artists like Neruda, and his close friend García Lorca, back into the realm of the living, making us wonder if death is really the end. A Chilean judge’s decision, in February, to allow an investigation into Neruda’s death, which led to this week’s exhumation, looks like an act of expiation.

Neruda used his pen to denote, to denounce, to decry. He was 69 when the junta took power. By then he had been an embassy attaché, a senator and an ambassador. In 1969, he initially ran for president as a Communist, but later backed Allende’s candidacy. However, passion for political change was only one side of his persona. The other was that of a bon vivant. Many people enjoy life plentifully, but few have been so eloquent about it. The Dionysian sensuality of Neruda’s odes is contagious, joyful and erotic. And also destructive: Neruda’s marriage to Matilde Urrutia, his third wife and the inspiration for “The Captain’s Verses” and “One Hundred Love Sonnets,” unraveled after she learned he was having an affair with her niece.

Neruda died in a clinic in Santiago on Sept. 23, 1973 — 12 days after the American-backed coup that overthrew Allende and brought Gen. Augusto Pinochet to power. Many Chileans have long been skeptical of the official cause of death. In 2011, Neruda’s former driver said the poet told him, on the eve of his death, that he’d been given a harmful injection by a doctor. Conspiracy theorists note that Neruda died in the same hospital where Eduardo Frei Montalva, a politician who had supported the junta before switching sides, died in 1982. A judge ruled in 2009 that Frei had been poisoned.

Could Neruda have suffered a similar fate? Allende had died on Sept. 11, 1973, and another opponent of the junta, the folk singer Víctor Jara, was assassinated on Sept. 16. Finishing off Neruda could have been the junta’s coup de grâce.

Exhuming icons is one way to deal with guilt. Elsewhere in Latin America, the past’s phantoms are resurfacing: in Guatemala, where the former dictator Efraín Ríos Montt is on trial for genocide; in Argentina, whose cities are dotted with memorials to those who were “disappeared” during the “dirty war”; and in Mexico, where a once-pliant media have challenged the former president Felipe Calderón’s handling of the war against drug cartels.

But Neruda holds a special place in this grim look backward. Gabriel García Márquez, the Colombian writer and a fellow Nobel laureate, has called him “the most important poet of the 20th century — in any language.”

Neruda left thousands of poems, a handful of which are of such inspired beauty as to justify the very existence of the Spanish language. Adolescents routinely give his “Twenty Love Poems and a Song of Despair” to their sweethearts. His ideological verses have been read aloud, often from memory, in one revolution after another, from the fall of the Berlin Wall to the embers of the Arab Spring. Some of Neruda’s poems — “I Ask for Silence,” “Walking Around,” “Ode to the Artichoke” — have been rendered into English repeatedly, each version another effort to make him current and vital to a new generation.

What we’ve read so far:

32 pages

32 pages

26 pages

Which hour was most daunting for you?

The 15th hour was brutal for me, that’s when I decided to take a nap. A big mistake because I slept through the rest of readathon.

Could you list a few high-interest books that you think could keep a Reader engaged for next year?

I think kids books with games in them are so fun and peek-a-boo flaps. They are quick reads for when there are distracting little children around or you just need a quick read.

How many books did you read?

We only read 3 whole books, but I did read about 50 more pages of Camelot’s Court.

What were the names of the books you read?

See above the images.

Which book did you enjoy most?

The little one and I really like the Halloween Forest.

Which did you enjoy least?

None really.

How likely are you to participate in the Read-a-thon again? What role would you be likely to take next time?

I think if I have as little time as I did this time, I’ll be a cheerleader instead.

I hope everyone had a great read-a-thon!

Dewey’s 24-Hour Read-a-Thon Wrap Up

This weekend was Dewey’s 24-hour read-a-thon. I read on and off yesterday in between traveling to Anna’s house to celebrate her husband’s birthday. It was a great time and Wiggles was a very happy camper most of the time, but with three teeth coming in at once, she did have her cranky moments.

Ok, so you really want to know how much I read and of what. I finished up Mr. Dary’s Undoing by Abigail Reynolds at 11 PM last night, reading about 250 pages since I started it earlier in the week. Then I read about 10 more pages of Simon Pegg’s memoir, Nerd Do Well, before falling asleep.

Overall, I didn’t get much reading done, but it was fun. How did you do?

Read-a-Thon, the Updates, & Mini-Challenges

I have commenced reading The Lotus Eaters, which I have to post on Monday for a tour.

Hour 1: pages read 80

Mini-challenge #1:

Reading from my apartment with Anna and The Girl

Facts about me: I’ve got wet hair, I’m wearing slippers, and I am in my new favorite reading chair.

# of books 9

Goal: finish The Lotus Eaters.

Advice: read in small doses, get up and walk around with your books for exercise to keep those muscles from atrophy, and have some snacks handy…and a husband or friend to cook for you is always helpful.

Hour #2:

I just want to say that I haven’t read much between 9-10am because I went to the library sale, and boy did I buy too many books and 4 books for the Vietnam War reading challenge giveaway!  I also picked up some great poetry books for the end of month giveaway for National Poetry Month.

OK Gals and Guys, back to reading…have a great time.

Hour 3:

We have our official participants: Anna and The Girl

And we have an unofficial participant:  Anna’s Husband!

Mini-Challenge, Hour 5:

From The Lotus Eaters, page 106–

“During the main course of sauteed sole and julienned vegetables, they discussed the logistics of surviving as a Western woman in Saigon — how to find feminine products and the chronic shortage of hair spray, where to have one’s hair styled, where to buy clothes, where it was safe to go along, what kind of culture there was, how to handle the number of soldiers all around.

Demitasses of espresso and sliced mango with sticky rice were served. . .”

Are you hungry yet?

Hour 6:

Just a few notes.  I’ve read more of The Lotus Eaters and read about 30 pages of Cross Country by James Patterson.

The Girl is taking a break and napping in the bedroom, and we had some orange chicken meal, which I found wanting — frozen Chinese food is not the same as fresh made Chinese…that’s for sure.

Hour 8:

Not much progress going on.  I’ve read about 140 pages in two different books.  I haven’t finished one solid book, but I’ve eaten jelly beans, cheese, crackers, drank 2 cups of coffee, 1 cup of cranberry ginger ale, and has some really bad frozen orange chicken.

I’ve also cheered almost everyone on my list, but I will get to the blogs in letter T soon!  Ok, back to reading.

Here’s some fun for everyone in Hour 11:

If the Cover Fits Challenge:






Thanks to The Girl for her contribution!
Mid-Event Survey:

1. What are you reading right now? The Lotus Eaters by Tatjana Soli
2. How many books have you read so far? I have not completed one.  I’m reading two off and on.  I’ve read 233 pages so far though…which is good for me.
3. What book are you most looking forward to for the second half of the Read-a-thon? Your Ten Favorite Words by Reb Livingston
4. Did you have to make any special arrangements to free up your whole day? No
5. Have you had many interruptions? How did you deal with those? There were interruptions, which is why I began reading Cross Country by James Patterson because its a lighter read and I don’t have to concentrate as hard.  I also took a few breaks to walk the dog and cut up some cheese for snacks and eat lunch and dinner.
6. What surprises you most about the Read-a-thon, so far? Read-a-Thon has been a flourish of activity and reading and the time just flies by.
7. Do you have any suggestions for how to improve the Read-a-thon next year? No suggestions here.  Just wish there were more mini-challenges that weren’t repeated from previous years.  And that the sentence from book titles challenge was a vote that included all the entrants.
8. What would you do differently, as a Reader or a Cheerleader, if you were to do this again next year? Cheerleading is tough work, and though I signed up for only 1 hour, I’ve completed that hour and will probably do some more later on as part of a break.
9. Are you getting tired yet? Not at all surprisingly.
10. Do you have any tips for other Readers or Cheerleaders, something you think is working well for you that others may not have discovered? I love when cheerleaders visit the blog to cheer me on with their little rhymes, etc.
Hour 14:
Anna and The Girl have headed home for the evening, and I hope to finish up The Lotus Eaters.  I’ve also got an audio book on stand by should my eyes get tired.  My husband is asleep on the couch — poor guy worked this morning really early.  I hope everyone is having a great time.
I’ve been cheering, but I’ve met the one hour commitment, but you never know, I could stop by your blog to cheer you on some more.  You’ve been warned.
Pages read:  265
Hour 15:
Ok, I’m really getting sleepy, so its off to bed for sleep or maybe just a nap…we’ll see but I wanted to leave you with my parting cheer: (and a page count)
Some of you may have seen this already, but here it is in case you haven’t:
Looks like you are making great headway
Keep up the reading, don’t let that head sway
Eyes on the page and coffee in hand
You’ll be entering a new land.


Pages read:  331
I’m going to rest my eyes for a bit and listen to my audiobook.  Keep up the good work!

Hour # 23:
I listened to Shutter Island for a while, but feel into a nap, but I’m back now reading Cross country and The Lotus Eaters.  I’ve dropped by some blogs on my list to cheer them on in these wee hours of the read-a-thon.  Keep up the good work everyone…here’s my cheer in case you’re curious:
Don’t let those eyes droop
head out on the stoop
get some fresh air
before heading back to that chair
pick up your book
take another look
read, read, read
Ok, onto the Cliffhanger Mini-Challenge at Alicia Blade:
I think the biggest cliffhanger for me happened in Suzanne Collins Catching Fire, and I am still waiting for the resolution to the revolution!  Yes, that book ends with a big reveal of behind the scenes political activity, and I want to know what happens.  Will Katniss grasp her destiny with both hands and challenge the Capitol…what will happen to Peta, what is up with Gale, and who are these underground revoluntionaries?  I cannot wait to get the next in the series, MockingJay.
Time read: 17 hours
Pages read: 391
Audio Chapters: 4

End-of-read-a-thon Questions:
1. Which hour was most daunting for you?
Hour 15 was a beast
2. Could you list a few high-interest books that you think could keep a Reader engaged for next year?
The Lotus Eaters is a really absorbing read.  Cross Country isn’t a bad choice either, the chapters are nice and short.
3. Do you have any suggestions for how to improve the Read-a-thon next year?
No suggestions other than some tweaks to the mini-challenges.  I think the book title sentence challenge should include all entrants in the final vote.
4. What do you think worked really well in this year’s Read-a-thon?
I really liked the cheer teams and the division of blogs to cheer for.
5. How many books did you read?
I didn’t finish 1, but I’m nearly finished with The Lotus Eaters, about halfway through Cross Country, and just at the beginning of Shutter Island on Audio.
6. What were the names of the books you read?
The Lotus Eaters, Cross Country, and Shutter Island
7. Which book did you enjoy most?
I enjoyed them all.
8. Which did you enjoy least?
9. If you were a Cheerleader, do you have any advice for next year’s Cheerleaders?
I think it would be fun to have some premade cheers for those unable to make up their own, but then again maybe people just want to cheer in their own way. No other advice, but I did like the shout out to National Poetry Month with the cheerleading team names.
10. How likely are you to participate in the Read-a-thon again? What role would you be likely to take next time?
I’ll probably read and cheer again next year, though cheering is addicting and took time away from my reading.
Have a great Sunday everyone!  Keep reading!

Dewey’s 24-Hour Read-a-Thon is Back!

April 10, 2010, at 8 AM EST is the start of Dewey’s 24-hour read-a-thon!

I’m not sure how much of the 24-hour period I will be reading, but I did sign up to Cheer this year for at least an hour.  I figure that would give me a much needed break from reading.  It could end up being more than that, but I only wanted to commit to 1 hour since I’ve never done it before.

What books do I plan to read?

Poetry….lots of poetry!  Why?  Because it’s National Poetry Month!

1.  Stroke by Sidney Wade
2.  The Wrong Miracle by Liz Gallagher
3.  Your Ten Favorite Words by Reb Livingston
4.  The Guilt Gene by Diana Raab
5.  The Niagara River by Kay Ryan
6.  Questions of Fire by Gregg Mosson

And maybe these books:

1.  Fallen Angels by Walter Dean Myers
2.  The Things They Carried by Tim O’Brien
3.  Even the Dogs by Jon McGregor

I hope you will enjoy the inaugural National Poetry Month Blog Tour this year in the midst of your read-a-thoning!

What do you plan on reading?  Will you be cheering?  How do you breakdown your time?

FTC Disclosure: Clicking on title and image links will lead you to my Amazon Affiliate page; No purchase necessary, though appreciated.

© 2010, Serena Agusto-Cox of Savvy Verse & Wit. All Rights Reserved. If you’re reading this on a site other than Savvy Verse & Wit or Serena’s Feed, be aware that this post has been stolen and is used without permission.

This Is the End…Or Is It?

1. Which hour was most daunting for you?

16th hour was tough and I eventually succumbed to sleep.  But I did get up again about 5:50 AM to finish my 3rd book by 8 AM and the end of the read-a-thon!

2. Could you list a few high-interest books that you think could keep a Reader engaged for next year?

Sookie Stackhouse series is great to keep you awake and giggling.

3. Do you have any suggestions for how to improve the Read-a-thon next year?

On suggestion would be to have fewer challenges that require readers to post on their own blog.  You may be too exhausted to participate.

4. What do you think worked really well in this year’s Read-a-thon?

The hosts were great and the cheerleaders made the rounds.

5. How many books did you read?

I finished 3 books, the last book right down to the wire at 8 a.m. here.  That’s 439 pages.  That’s a record for me.  These are the books I finished:

1.  Carta Marina by Ann Fisher-Wirth

2.  More of Me Disappears by John Amen

3.  Living Dead in Dallas by Charlaine Harris

6. What were the names of the books you read?

Oops, I alread answered this question!

7. Which book did you enjoy most?

I really enjoyed John Amen’s More of Me Disappears and Living Dead in Dallas by Charlaine Harris best.

8. Which did you enjoy least?

Carta Marina by Ann Fisher-Wirth

9. If you were a Cheerleader, do you have any advice for next year’s Cheerleaders?

I wasn’t a cheerleader, but I think they did a great job.

10. How likely are you to participate in the Read-a-thon again? What role would you be likely to take next time?

I will participate in the next one, though I leave in what capacity up in the air and up to my whims.

Midway Meme

Ok, you’re in for a group update.  Here’s the skinny:

Anna from Diary of an Eccentric, after 12 hours, is still reading The Return by Victoria Hislop and she is not halfway through it.  She says, “I’m lazy and don’t want to post.  Please forgive me.”  Anna has yet to finish 1 book yet.  As for interruptions, “We’re reading with a 9-year-old, what do you think?” she says.  LOL  Anna is tired and is looking forward to finishing The Return.  She is slowing down, though, or so she tells me.

The Girl is still reading Bone, but its the second book of Bone she’s read today.  This one is called Bone:  Out From Boneville.  She says, “I’ve been switching between Bone and R.L. Stine.”  She even had the privilege of using her mom’s Book Buddy, and she likes adjusting the ribbons, so much so she was distracted for a bit.  Girl says that there have been interruptions for her too, like movies and playing with the dog.  She is far from tired and very energetic. [It must be the candy.]  She is looking forward to finishing Bone.  Mom says, “For a 9-year-old, she’s doing well.”

As for me, I have three books going right now:  More of Me Disappears by John Amen (poetry), Night of Flames by Douglas Jacobson, and Living Dead in Dallas by Charlaine Harris.  I’m looking forward to having one of these three read in the next hour, which will likely be the poetry book at this point.  Then I will concentrate on the other two.  I’ve only read one book so far, but should have a second book done soon.  There have been interruptions from good movies to The Girl (though not so bad) and time spent cooking to taking the dog out, which were all perfectly fine distractions for me.  I’m not tired yet, and can’t wait to see how long I stay up actually reading, though there is that early yard sale in the morning…

We had some pork loin and corn for dinner and some guac and chips for dessert–not to mention the Halloween candy we’ve been snacking on.

Who Keeps Me Company

Read-a-thon hour 8:  This mini-challenge is from Under the Boardwalk and asks readers to talk about who or what keeps them company.

Well, here you are.  I have a full house of Anna from Diary of an Eccentric and The Girl.  Her hubby is watching Transformers and my hubby is at work now until 6 p.m.  But you’ll notice I have no company with me on my chair, but my books and my glass of Coke because my dog, Charlee, has abandoned me.

We don’t have any snacks out at the moment since we had a big breakfast and a big lunch.  Dunno what’s on the agenda for dinner, but we’ll think of something.

I’ve read one poetry book, and have been alternating between Sookie Stackhouse #2, Living Dead in Dallas and Night of Flames.

What keeps you company?

7th Hour Entertainment. . .

So, we were in need of a break.  We had some lasagna and garlic bread for lunch, which the men cooked!  I couldn’t believe it.

I’ve finished one book of poetry Carta Marina, and The Girl has finished one book, Bone:  Treasure Hunters.  Anna, well, she’s still plugging away with The Return by Victoria Hislop.

However, we figured we’d take a video of The Girl.  Check it out:

What have you guys been doing to give yourselves a break??

I’ve Been Hijacked. . .

My blog has been hijacked by The Girl who wanted to do a mini-challenge.

So here’s her sentence from her book titles:

Bobby vs. Girls, the treasure hunters, get kicked out from boneville.

Let’s root for The Girl.

Read-A-Thon Welcome

Good morning.  It’s read-a-thon!  I started exactly at 8AM EST reading, while preparing breakfast.  I started with Carta Marina, a poetry book and got to part two of the three part poem before reading the second book in the Sookie Stackhouse series.

I’m not sure the hubby appreciated me reading poetry out loud to him while we were cooking before Anna and The Girl made it here for read-a-thon.  But I did it anyway.

I don’t know how much I’ll be updating, but I’ll be checking mini-challenges and trying to visit other participants.

We had a big breakfast of scrambled eggs with garlic and oregano, brown sugar sausage, bacon, and pancakes…with coffee naturally, though cocoa for The Girl.

The men are busy playing video game football while we’re reading.  I think they’re in heaven with read-a-thon comes around.

Have a great day and keep reading.

Remember, I’m reading for Poets.org.  If you want the details of my goal, check it out.