Top 10 Books I Was “Forced” to Read

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I’m super excited to be doing another top ten tuesday, a book meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. This week they asked bloggers to cull down a list of favorite books we were forced to read. I decided to further narrow this down to books assigned in school, because, while I have several books I read/loved at strong urgings of friends and family members, I never actually had to read them. I also decided no more than one book by each author. Otherwise this would have been way too many Alice Munro collections. I’m still reeling from her Nobel Prize win last week. Anyways, here is my list of the top ten books I was forced to read in school. Continue reading

Dewey’s Read-a-thon

dewey1-300x300For the next 24 hours I’m going to be part of Dewey’s Read-a-thon.  This is my second time participating and I’m more excited/less nervous than I was my first time around. I’m not hardcore enough yet to try to read the whole 24 hours, but I am going to try and surpass my time/page count from last April. This means I need to read for more than 13 hours and read more than 1,000 pages. Internet permitting (it’s been on the fritz lately) I’ll be updating this post throughout the day (and night!) on my progress and with fun mini-challenges. You can also get updates by checking my twitter: @alisoncdoherty Continue reading

Guest Posts: Book Clubs

This guest post comes to us from one of Hardcovers & Heroines’ first readers and my mother, Martha Doherty. She’s the woman who taught me to love reading. Enjoy her post on different book clubs she’s been a part of! 

I have always wished I played tennis. As I transitioned from one stage of life to the next, high school, college, early adulthood, it seemed tennis players moved with the greatest of social ease. They always had a communal game to play. They seemed to make acquaintances and then friends the fastest. I was envious. However, I am not a tennis player. I am a reader. I have always been a reader. Reading was always a solitary endeavor and so I resented the tennis players.

BookClub

Then in the 1980’s book clubs started. At least I don’t remember them existing before then. Book clubs took my solitary pleasure to a collective one. I have been in four book clubs in my life. In my first book club, members were mainly young moms  seeking intellectual conversation. It was dominated by an argument over whether the books we were reading were “deep” enough. I had a two year old and a three year old at home so anything that wasn’t Dr. Seuss or Julie Garwood was deep to me.  Continue reading

In Defense of English Majors

English majorTo major in English or not to major in English … that is the question. While it was never much of a question for me, it does seem to be something that’s risen in public consciousness in the last two weeks. Just four days after my slightly awkward Father’s Day conversation about if an English major actually translated into any kind of job, David Brooks came to my aid and wrote an op-ed titled The Humanist Vocation in the New York Times. The article discussed how humanities degrees have been cut in half in the last 50 years and exploring the reasoning. Continue reading

The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight, by Jennifer E. Smith: Changing the Way I Think Of Airports Forever

9780316122399_p0_v1_s260x420I am not the kind of person who gets dressed up to go on a plane. I flew enough as a bicoastal kid to know the key to a happy plane ride is a comfy plane ride. When I was at Smith College (an all women’s school) the airport became the place to meet guys. Suddenly, instead of wearing leggings and avoiding eye contact I was supposed to wear eyeliner and be flirtatious. The goal was no longer an empty middle seat on the plane: it was a boyfriend. I resisted this trend and continued to wear my Ugg boots and unapproachable expression, but reading The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight, by Jennifer E. Smith, kind of made me regret that decision.  Continue reading

Is Abbi Glines Pushing the Boundaries of YA Fiction?

For those of you who don’t know, Abbi Glines is a self-publisher who has been appearing all over different bestseller lists in the last few months. I will admit that I’ve read a few of her books – when something is priced under a dollar its hard to not check it out. Her books make 50 Shades look well written, but I understand the appeal. They include interesting characters, abrupt cliffhanger endings, and plenty of scenes that would make Nora Roberts blush. It is those scenes that have made me pretty surprised this week to see her name on the YA Bestseller list for her book While It Lasts. I considered her solidly a Romance (and not light romance), even though her characters are often between ages 17 and 21. Which makes me wonder – should something so sexually explicit and so obviously designed to titillate be considered young adult fiction?

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Continue reading