Achebe, Szymborska and Kindle: My 2012 Readings

Inspired by one of my newly discovered favorite blogs, Kinna Reads, I will hereby attempt to answer the question “What are your reading plans for 2012″?

Overall, I just hope to read a novel a month, because really this is looking like a very busy year, professionally. When reading is part of your work, I have come to realize that “relaxing with a book” does not have the same allure. Then add a nursing baby as the cherry on top!

Still, what self-respecting writer-wannabe can live without reading?

Right now, I am reading Achebe‘s Anthills of the Savannah, slowly, slowly. I like it, especially the idea of capturing a corrupt government from the inside, but stylistically the constant switch in persons telling the story confuses me. Plus I want to know if any part of this book can be used for understanding dictatorship, say in a classroom. Hence, I need time. I am also reading the collected works of Wieslawa Szymborska with the same non-speed. Now, this slow reading is for a completely different purpose. I read slowly to create my own images and because I like to think about that these are all the poetry we will ever have by her as she passed away earlier this month.

Then I am trying to get used to my Kindle. See pic! The reason I since October 2011 own a Kindle is all due to book-bloggers Accra Books and Things and Fiona Leonard. They convinced me that reading off a Kindle is just like reading from a book, only better. As ordering books to Ghana is a lil’bit of a nightmare, I normally fill my suitcases with literature. BUT STILL, if in Ghana when one hears of a new book, waiting is included. Enter the Kindle. In seconds one can get books of interest. Seconds! I am not even exaggerating! It is amazing really.

So far, I have read Fiona Leonard‘s book the Chicken Thief in full and many samples of books (they are free). Right now, I am “involved in” two non-fiction books on my Kindle. One is book on teaching critical thinking by bell hooks. I find it extremely relevant and am happy to finally be reading “the author without capital letters”. The other book by Ester Perel is called Mating in Captivity and is about long-term relationships. Interesting topic and great, flowy prose. My friends were right, by the way. Reading off a Kindle is better than reading from a physical book.

As I am bilingual, my reading habits are as well. I have read a collection of shorter texts Avig Maria, by Mia Skäringer. I have a few softbacks I might turn to, and my cook books, but maybe there will be less reading in Swedish now that I have a Kindle? The reason is the Kindle only carries English titles as you have to buy them off a big American chain store…

Kinna has promised to report monthly on her reading progress. Let me not make any promise of that sort, I would rather like to know about your plans!