Saturday, December 23rd, I began my Readathon at 7:00 a.m., and spent the first hour reading my “grandson’s” dissertation, “If You Do Not Like the Past, Change It”: The Reel Civil Rights Revolution, Historical Memory, and the Making of Utopian Pasts. He is a cultural historian and an expert on how films depict history, but even though his dissertation is a very scholarly work, it is surprisingly readable.  Throughout the day, I would return to this huge red book, and covered the end of chapter two and all of chapter three, a total of 130 pages.

By 8:00, I wanted a break and some breakfast, so while I had my coffee and muffin, I read the morning edition of The Houston Chronicle, skimming most, but closely reading two feature articles and all of the comics.

At 8:45, I read on the novel, Manhattan Beach, and over the course of the day, I read approximately 130+ pages.

By 9:00, my e-mails and texts were pinging in, so I dealt with them, plus reading a few blog posts until 9:30 when I returned to Manhattan Beach. It was becoming really interesting by this point.

From then until noon, taking a few minutes out to put dinner in the oven, I read a few chapters of Finish Strong by Richard G. Capen to include some non-fiction reading.

At lunch we had unexpected company, whom, of course, we invited to eat with us, and I broke my Readathon until 3:00 p.m. in order to enjoy a Christmas visit.

Back to the dissertation at 3:00 until 4:00 p.m. when I took a break to clean up the kitchen, grab a snack, and deliver Christmas goodies to neighbors, which, again, required a bit of visiting time.

By 4:30 I was in the mood for Manhattan Beach again, followed by a few pages from Finish Strong when I came to the chapter break of the novel, and then, on to the 5:30 evening news and a light supper.

At 6:00 p.m., I decided to switch to the Kindle app on my laptop and read S. Higbee’s Running Out of Space (I was propelled through several chapters at time-warp speed because of the fast paced action).  The book is an exciting adventure in the future on board a spaceship (and other places). By 8:15, I needed to catch my breath and breathe in some of Earth’s familiar oxygen, so I returned to Finish Strong.  Overall, I managed to read chapters 4-11 of this very inspiring, very readable book.  The only drawback was, while on this book, I often found myself stopping to copy down some parts of it for my quotes book.

Around 8:00 p.m., I secured the house, turned on the outside lights, and prepared myself to finish my reading in bed. Until 9:00, I read on the dissertation, and followed with two of Neil Gaiman’s essays from his The View from the Cheap Seats.  As I became sleepier and sleepier, I decided that approximately 10 hours was a respectable accomplishment for a readathon, and although I didn’t fulfill my goal of finishing a whole book, I did make a good dent in four books on my TBR list.

In spite of not finishing a whole book nor reading for twelve hours, I would deem my little Readathon a success.

Merry Christmas!

Author: Rae Longest

This year (2019) finds me with 50 plus years of teaching "under my belt." I have taught all levels from pre-K "(library lady" or "book lady"--volunteer) to juniors, seniors, and graduate students enrolled in my Advanced Writing class at the university where I have just completed 30 years. My first paying teaching job was junior high, and I spent 13 years with ages 12-13, the "difficult years." I had some of the "funnest" experiences with this age group. When I was no longer the "young, fun teacher," I taught in an elementary school setting before sixth graders went on to junior high, teaching language arts blocs, an assignment that was a "dream-fit" for me. After completing graduate school in my 40s, I went on to community college, then university teaching. Just as teaching is "in my blood," so is a passion for reading, writing, libraries, and everything bookish. This blog will be open to anyone who loves books, promotes literacy and wants to "come out and play."


  1. hey howdy–finished my last 3 books of the year to make my goal while drinking lots of coffee and tea at Starbucks. Read “Truth Stranger than Fiction” by Josiah Henson, “Honeymoon” by James Patterson, and “Man’s Search for Meaning” by Viktor E. Frankl. Spent the rest of it re-planning my 2018 reading breakdown and how I’m going to tackle Shakespeare later this week.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I LOVE the profile pic of you – what a lovely smile:). I had no idea you were including Running Out of Space in your Read-a-thon – thank you for your comments and I’m delighted you found it enjoyable escapism. As ever, the breadth of your reading material is impressive and I’m impressed that you managed to progress four such different books. Happy holidays, Rae:)

    Liked by 1 person

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