December is always such a whirlwind, with both family birthdays and Christmas to celebrate. And that’s not all: Orange January is just around the corner! This annual reading event, and its companion, Orange July, are devoted to reading at least one book that has won or been nominated for the Orange Prize for Fiction. Jill at The Magic Lasso does a great job organizing these events, and promoting them with groups on both LibraryThing and Facebook.
The groups add a wonderful social element. I’ve gleaned lots of reading recommendations, and it’s fun to have people cheering me on as I read. In July I also recruited a mascot — sort of an “Orange personal trainer” — and I’m happy to say he’ll be returning in January!
I’ve read all the winners, and am currently working on the short lists. I don’t necessarily want to read every shortlisted book, but there are several years where I have read the winner, and all but one or two of the shortlisted titles. My inner completist is calling very loudly to “finish” 2011, 2008, 2006, 2004, and 2002. That would be 10 books, which is doable, but doesn’t leave much room to read the 2012 short list. So we’ll see what happens, but for now I’ve chosen my January reads:
- Oryx and Crake (2004), because I have this one on my shelves
- Beyond Black (2006), by the author of Wolf Hall, which I loved.
- Lullabies for Little Criminals (2008), because the LibraryThing group members raved about this one in July
- Fault Lines (2008), to complete the 2008 shortlist
I know you’re eager to take part in Orange January. What do you plan to read?