Sunday, April 01, 2012

March in Review and Projections for April and a Look at the First Quarter

March in Review
March has been my all time best months for reading. I read some really great books and continued to dent my TBR pile. Perhaps it will be better if I don't refer to it as a pile anymore. I read all the books I projected to read

2012 seems to be moving in a good direction, at least so far as the first three months are concerned. After reading 7 books each in January and February, a total of 10 books were read in March. These ten books gave a total of 2424 pages; an average of 78 pages read per day (compared to the 62 per day in February and 58 per day in January) and 242 per book. I didn't read any single story in March. The following are the books:
  1. A Life in Full and Other Stories by the Caine Prize for African Writing (read for the 100 Shots of Shorts Challenge and reviewed for the Short Story Monday)
  2. White Teeth by Zadie Smith (for the Chunkster Challenge and the Top 100 Books Reading Challenge)
  3. Cat's Cradle by Kurt Vonnegut
  4. The No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency by Alexander McCall Smith
  5. Harvest of Thorns by Shimmer Chinodya (Commonwealth Writers Prize for Africa Region Winners Reading Challenge)
  6. Birds of Our Land by Virginia W. Dike
  7. The Chicken Thief by Fiona Leonard
  8. Brave New World by Aldous Huxley
  9. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time by Mark Haddon
  10. Madmen and Specialists by Wole Soyinka (for the Africa Reading Challenge)
The Quarter
March 31 marks the end of the first quarter of the year and stock must be taken on the progress of challenges and commitments.
  • I set out to read 70 books this year; I have read 24 (6006 pages) so far which is 34 percent. With 46 more books left and at an average of 6 books per month, this target will be achieved latest by October;
  • I am currently 36 percent through the 100 Shots of Shorts Challenge, which is a Challenge to read 100 short stories (both single stories and anthologies count towards this);
  • I joined the Chunkster Challenge at the Chubby level, which was to read four books with pages of not less than 450; at 1 Chunkster per month, I am 75 percent through this challenge. The last book to complete the challenge will be read in April;
  • The Africa Reading Challenge hosted Kinna asked Readers to read at least 5 African books. I am 60 percent (3 out of 5) through.
At these rate I will be able to complete all challenges before the year ends. The only challenge I am lagging behind is the Top 100 Books Reading Challenge, which is geared towards completing a selection of 100 books. I am only 35 percent through this five-year challenge, with two years more to go.

Projections for April
April will not be different from the other months. I will still stick to my 'not less than 50 pages a day' reading and hope all things go on well. The following are the books I've scheduled to read:
  1. Famished Road by Ben Okri. This book will be read for both the Top 100 Books Reading Challenge and Chunkster Reading Challenge. It will officially be the last book to complete the challenge though there are other books that need to be read which also qualify for the Chunkster Challenge;
  2. Burger's Daughter by Nadine Gordimer. This book will be read for the Top 100 Books Reading Challenge and the  Africa Reading Challenge;
  3. Atonement by Ian McEwan. For the Top 100 Books Reading Challenge;
  4. Writing Free, edited by Irene Staunton. For the Africa Reading Challenge;
  5. Last Evenings on Earth by Roberto Bolano.
Other titles will be added as and when it becomes necessary.


  1. you've had a great month by the look of it Nana ,all the best stu

  2. Welcome to April. Congrats on how far you've gone on your goals :)

  3. I'm glad you've had such a great reading month! I loved Atonement and I'll be interested to see what you think of The Famished Road. I tried to read this for the Booker Challenge and failed, boo. Good luck with all your reading!

    1. Thanks Marie. I have thought of reading Atonement for the past two months. I think the time is now right.

      Okri's books are like that. Sometimes I think one needs a capacious view of the world to take in what he writes. Africans by nature believe in spirits and the fluidity between the physical world and the spiritual world, which most Westerners do not. Thus, in writing about such fluidity, it becomes difficult for such readers to 'get' him on what he's talking about.

  4. Looking forward to your thoughts on The Famished Road. I think you'll get a lot out of it!

    1. I hope to. It has some beautiful lines in it.

  5. You did so well in March, Nana. I wish I could have done half of this.

    1. Thanks Celestine. I really want to make this a habit.

  6. Like everybody else, i also look forwrd to what you make of the famished road. Hey, bro, you are high up the ladder. Congrats, on the reading record you've set for yourself. I wish you more success in this month of April.

    1. I'm halfway through it and I must say that it is a work of a genius. I love what I've read and his visions are much more expansive than I thought of though this book is somewhat more accessible than his collection of short stories, Incidents at the Shrine.


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