This week’s theme for Weekly Geeks 14-2010 is Reading Globally.
I have signed up for the Easy Level of Dorte’s 2010 Global Reading Challenge but have yet to give it serious attention. I just may be on Challenge overload but it’s still fun. I thought I would use this week to check on my reading to date and where it’s been taking me around the world – if it has!
I’ve read 21 books so far this year. I do think I have been reading a nice variety of style and topic but in terms of location, I seem to be entrenched within the US and UK.
US – 11
England – 4
Ireland (Dublin) – 1
Spain – 1
Fantasy World – 3 (Herland setting being identified as South America)
Of the books set in the United States, the states represented seem to be the most populous ones: 3 in California, 2 in Florida, 1 in Texas. Three books are impossible to pin down to one location and two could be said to be New England, but I suppose Wordy Shipmates could be Massachusetts. I would hazard a guess that Oryx & Crake is New York but it could be Massachusetts? Could be Canada, too – we don’t get many clues other than Harvard being underwater.
My most ‘worldly’ book would have to be Waiting for Columbus; set in Spain with the author being Canadian.
Of the twenty authors represented, only eight are not from the US. I read only one translated book: from Swedish, Benny & Shrimp by Katarina Mazetti.
I’m balanced at 11:10 on the Female to Male author ratio. But regarding ethnic diversity, my reading is NOT. Looks like I need to get busy on incorporating more diversity and start traveling around the world and meeting new people – here, there and everywhere. Still overall, I do think my reading choices have been atypical, nonclassifiable – - not same-same; not representative of one genre or category. And I thank book blogging for that.
My current reading of Woman by Natalie Angier has me exploring the inside of the female body but I would still have to say it is US-centered, though she does talk about health comparisons in other countries and the historical aspects of how the knowledge was built. The strange conclusions of the Greeks and the odd bias’ of the Victorian age (European?) physicians are fascinating.
So what do I pick up next? I was sort of hoping to tackle Watership Down next. It’s about…. rabbits?! and I have no idea if they are US rabbits or fantasy-world rabbits. Or perhaps I should peruse my tbr shelf and pick one of these:
Khaled Hosseini’s A Thousand Splendid Suns (Afghanistan)
Nadine Gordimer’s A Sport of Nature (South Africa)
Anita Diamant’s Day After Night (Israel, US author)
Jose Saramago’s Blindness (Portugal?)
I’m thinking that A Thousand Splendid Suns will be the best option on the diversity/non-US location scale. Would you agree?