Tag Archives: reading for robin

I Have Returned… With Big News!

Bottomless Belly ButtonOops, it seems Reading for Robin went on an unplanned summer vacation. It wasn’t my intention to stay away all summer long, but a few things got in the way. Those things include, but are not limited to, work, Chicago (x2), Memphis, New Jersey, Shelter Island, a bachelorette party, a wedding, good weather, and lots of dinners out.

While I was away from the internet these last few months, I regret to say I didn’t read as much as I should have. I’m not sure what I was doing instead (besides watching all of Orange is the New Black), but hopefully the fall will be different. However, I did read here and there and some of those books were great. My two favorites of the summer are probably Me Before You by Jojo Moyes (warning: keep tissues nearby) and The Interestings by Meg Wolitzer. I’m currently listening to The Astronaut Wives Club, which just happens to be this month’s book club pick, but I’m finding it only okay.

As for what’s next, I have a few new books on my list. I’m eyeing Jojo Moyes’ latest The Girl You Left Behind, The Husband’s Secret by Liane Moriarty, and The Love Affairs of Nathaniel P by Adelle Waldman. I’m leaving for London and Barcelona in a week so I’m looking for something really good to read. Suggestions are welcome.

But my big news is that I finished Bottomless Belly Button by Dash Shaw which means that I have now completed my mom’s list. Three and a half years and 58 books later, I’m done. It feels… weird. I started this project days after my mom died as a way to stay connected to her and so much has changed since then. I still miss her every day and it’s been nice having this project despite my recent neglect. Now that it’s over, I know I’ll still be connected to my mom in hundreds of other ways (her love of reading being just one) and I will find ways to honor her memory.

For the record, Bottomless Belly Button was strange and my mom never would have read it. It was, in fact, a “graphic” graphic novel with some explicit drawings and I only sort of knew what was going on most of the time. I still can’t imagine how this landed on her list.

With the list complete, I’m sure I’ll be on here even more sporadically than it’s been in the last year. However, I do hope to check in from time to time to share what I’ve been reading and hopefully hear about your books as well.

Thanks for following me on this journey. It’s been quite the experience!

Reading for Robin Hits the Airwaves

Reading with RobinExciting news… I’m going to be on the radio.

A woman named Robin Kall who hosts a radio show called Reading With Robin (oh the similarity!) stumbled upon my humble blog and reached out to me. She hosts a talk radio show based in Rhode Island about authors and reading and books, which she learned to love from her mom. She really likes the idea of my Reading for Robin project and now we’re going to talk about it.

So, next Saturday, December 11th, at around 7:30am I’m going to call in and chat with her on the radio. Should be interesting seeing as how I get nervous doing these things. I was once interviewed for a video project at journalism camp (I know, I know, nerd) and it did not go well. But hopefully I’m better on radio than I am on video. Here’s hoping!

If you’re up that early on a Saturday, which I most certainly am not usually, and you’d like to listen, I believe it streams live at http://www.920whjj.com/main.html. Otherwise, I will probably be able to post a link to the recording after the fact. That is if I’m not too embarrassed to have anyone listen to it. Wish me luck!

Ch-Ch-Ch-Changes At Reading For Robin

Ellie KemperDon’t worry, not major changes. But I’ve decided to stop posting over the weekend. It’s been a busy summer with lots of trips and such (and another one coming up this weekend), so it has become difficult to find time to blog on Saturdays and Sundays. And as much as I’ve enjoyed sharing authors’ tweets and interesting links from the week, as my dad says, those are the posts you can skip. However, I’ll still stalk the authors on Twitter and keep an eye out for fun links and update you as I find great things. Nevertheless, I apologize if your Saturdays and Sundays are a little drearier, but I hope I make up for it Monday through Friday.

In the meantime, I couldn’t leave you going into the weekend without some exciting publishing news. Another member of The Office crew is writing a book! Okay maybe that’s just exciting publishing news to me… Anyway, two weeks ago I told you that Mindy Kaling (aka Kelly Kapoor) scored a book deal. Now the actress who plays her friend on the show, Ellie Kemper will have her own book too. That would be Erin the receptionist. (Little remembered fact: Her real name on the show is Kelly, but when there was confusion over two people named Kelly she opted to go by her middle name Erin.) She’s really funny on the show so hopefully that translates to the page. And now I can’t help but wonder who will be next from the Scranton gang to write a book. Kevin? Stanley? I’m looking at you guys.

Have A Good Weekend Everyone!

Golden Gate BridgeIt’s a lovely Friday and I’m enjoying it in San Francisco. I’ll be gone for the weekend so I’m taking Saturday and Sunday off from Reading for Robin. No “Reading for Robin Authors Say What?” or “Linked Up” this week. My sincere apologies.

But worry not readers, I will probably be doing plenty of reading these few days. Okay, well if not during the actual days I am here, then at least on the very long flights both to and from this fair city. And I’ll be more than happy to share what I’ve read with you as soon as I return.

In the meantime, I couldn’t leave you completely empty-handed and without entertainment. So, I present to you Librarians Do Gaga. It’s a video of librarians and future librarians rocking out to Poker Face, with library-related lyrics of course. Enjoy!

(via GeekSugar)

A High-Tech Version of the Reading List

BookLover iPhone appSo I was browsing the internet (or frantically searching “books” in Google News for a blog post idea) and came upon a mention of an iPhone app called BookLover, which can handle your reading list for you.

PC World summarizes the features:

Electric Pocket released BookLover on Wednesday, an iPhone application that allows you to keep track of the books you’ve recently read and remind yourself of ones that you’d like to read. It also features some sharing options for you to recommend books to your friends and a handy feature for keeping track of whom you’ve lent your books to.

It sounds useful, but it just seems amusing to me that there’s such a high-tech way to keep track of your reading list. My mom did that for years on just a piece of paper in her purse. When she upgraded, it was just to a Word document that she then printed and kept in her purse. Fancy, eh?

I’ve done her one better and created a Google doc for myself where I keep track of the books I want to read (that aren’t on Robin’s Reading List and therefore kept track of here) and the books I’ve read. But these days I also keep my mom’s list in my purse too. It seems fitting. Though my mom must have had a much more organized purse (no question there) because the list has taken a definite beating on the bottom of my bag.

Anyway, this BookLover app certainly takes the idea of the reading list to a new level and I kind of like the idea of it… especially the sharing features, since that’s something a traditional list can’t do. And thank goodness there’s technology to remind me about books I can’t seem to remember on my own.

Too bad I don’t have an iPhone. Actually it’s not too bad since I did have an iPhone and it dropped every single one of my calls. But too bad I don’t have a hypothetical iPhone that isn’t on an AT&T plan. Then I’d be all over this BookLover.

My Most Recommended Book So Far

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie SocietyIn the almost four months since I started this project, I’ve read nine of the books on my mom’s list. That leaves 48 to go if I’ve counted correctly. Even at this relatively early juncture people often ask me to rank my preferences or ask for a recommendation. Instead of just telling them to read my reviews (read my reviews!), I generally offer them my humble opinion. So what book on Robin’s List is on the top of my list?

That would be The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society. The first book from the list I’ve read also happens to be my favorite so far. It’s hard to pinpoint exactly why except that it was original, heartfelt and endearing. The characters are all quirky and the main character, Juliet, is witty and the perfect person to tie this story together. I’ve definitely suggested this book to more than a few people and even bought it for a friend. I’m so glad my mom’s former book club has just read this book too. I’m looking forward to hearing what they thought of it.

(For those who are curious, I think my runner-up for favorite book may be The House on Fortune Street.)

Susan Sarandon Knows This Blog Exists!

Whether she cares or not is another question…

To back up a little, a few weeks ago my parents’ friend Ronda commented on this site that, should Reading for Robin ever make it to the big screen, she thought Susan Sarandon would be perfect to play the role of my mom. That sparked many discussions about who should play who in this Reading for Robin feature film. George Clooney as my dad! Natalie Portman as me! Zach Efron as my boyfriend Andrew! We dreamed big, flattered ourselves and spared no expense.

Now fast forward to Friday night. My brother was in town and a group of us headed to this bar SPiN. The bar is full of ping pong tables and just happens to be co-owned by Susan Sarandon. While watching an intense match of ping pong, we spotted Susan sitting across the room. This was it!

My roommate Carley decided to go for it. She borrowed our friend Maggie’s business card, wrote down the URL for Reading for Robin and approached Susan. Carley told her about the blog and her potential role as my mom. I’m not sure Susan was exactly engaged in the conversation, but she did tell Carley that she was flattered and took the card. That’s more than I could have hoped for!

So Susan, if you’re reading this, we love you and if you’re interested, feel free to get in touch! A girl can dream, right?