On the Reading Horizon

Sort of unwittingly, I’ve accumulated a small mountain of books to read.

In no particular order. My brain doesn’t work orderly these days anyway.

  • Keeping the Castle, by Patrice Kindl. For everyone out there who is sad Jane Austen has finished writing books because they would like more Jane Austen-type stories, maybe with some extra, laugh-out-loud funny bits, this book is for YOU. I just finished it, and while it didn’t grab me immediately, the wacky names and endearingly humorous-but-naive main character kept me going.
  • Gidget, by Frederick Kohner. This one’s for research. Have yet to crack it open.
  • The History of Surfing, by Matt Warshaw. If this gigantic book did not cost $50 and take up so much space, I’d just buy it and save the poor people at the library the trouble of transfering it back and forth for me. It weighs about as much as a truck or a nine-month-old baby. I reserve it from another library branch, take it to my car with the library’s dolly (kidding), take it home, then read through the first quarter or so, and renew, renew, renew until it’s time to turn it in again. Such fascinating information! Such glorious photographs! Such a weighty tome!
  • Odd Girl Out, by Rachel Simmons. This book is has invaluable insights into girl bullying, or, as Simmons calls it, “relational aggression” among girls, plus a chapter on cyber bullying and another section on “sexting,” both of which scared the pants off me (but not in a sext-y way, get it? UGH).
  • Orchards, by Holly Thompson. I was talking with Helene Dunbar about novels in verse and she recommended this one. It’s about a half-Japanese, half-Jewish girl who spends a summer with family in Japan after the suicide of one of her classmates. (And girl bullying is involved! The connections! Amazing!) (Also, finished Orchards just before posting this. It was marvelous.)
  • Surf Mules, by G. Neri. More research. YA male POV. Didn’t grab me in the first few pages, but I’m going to give it a chance.
  • Through the Ever Night, by Veronica Rossi. I cannot wait for this one! With all the others in my queue, this one will be dessert.
  • Easy to Love, Difficult to Discipline, by Becky A. Bailey. Recommended by PB Rippey. Looks very good. Like so many on this list, I want to read it NOW.
  • Invincible Summer, by Hannah Moskowitz. Another recommendation by Helene. YA male POV. Looks angsty, but in a good way.
  • Stick, by Andrew Smith. I finally had to tell Helene to cease and desist on the book recommendations, because my bookcase runneth over. Well, I haven’t told her that yet, but if she makes any more recommendations, we’ve got a full house. NO VACANCY.
  • The Good Braider, by Terry Farish. Another YA novel-in-verse, and historical, and I’m kind of afraid to read it because it deals with some heavy issues (heavier than teen suicide tackled in Orchards, above? Mayhap – part of it is about the main character’s journey from war-torn Sudan…”exploding shells” mentioned in the inside flap. I’m nervous).
  • Scratching the Horizon: A Surfing Life, by Izzy Paskowitz with Daniel Paisner. I hope to be pleasantly surprised by this one. The one surfer autobiography I’ve looked through so far was incredibly disappointing.
  • Girl in the Curl: A Century of Women in Surfing, by Andrea Gabbard. This one’s going to be really good, I can tell just from flipping through it. The organization isn’t exactly clear to me yet, but the photos and brief bio information about some of the surfers is priceless.

If you have book recommendations for me, I thank you so much but this is not the time! I should be finished with these sometime in February, so we’ll talk then.

And I mean February 2014.

(Also, yes, that’s Maverick’s tiny hand disrupting my beautiful display of books in the featured image above.)


  1. readingisdelicious · January 25, 2013

    Omg, I didn’t know Kindl had a new book out!! MUST GET.

    • Beth Hull · January 25, 2013

      Why had you not told me about her? She’s so funny! I feel betrayed.

      • readingisdelicious · January 25, 2013

        Really? I have 2 or 3 of her books that I love. Owl in Love and Woman in the Wall. I think I have Goose Chase, too. The first two are strange, but endearing.

  2. Helene · January 25, 2013

    No…you can’t cut me off. I must make you read ALL the books!!! Gah! It’s an addiction. I can’t stop recommending good books to you.

    • Beth Hull · January 25, 2013

      But I appreciate it Helene, I really do! Oh yeah, and this list doesn’t include Stiefvater’s RAVEN BOYS or Moskowitz’s TEETH, both on request from the library….

      • Helene · January 25, 2013

        I wasn’t going to point those out. I was afraid you’d never speak to me again! 🙂

        • Beth Hull · January 25, 2013

          Oh no, you are far too valuable to ignore. 🙂

  3. jamieweilhealthcoach · January 25, 2013

    Are you a surfer, QS? And maybe the stroller for the library transfer. Heck, it’s there anyway, right? Nice assortment of titles. Your mom must teach English Lit:)

    • Beth Hull · January 25, 2013

      I am most definitely NOT a surfer! It’s research. I hope to do all my “surfing” through books.

  4. PB Rippey · January 25, 2013

    You’ve probably already seen them, but the “Endless Summer” movies? Also “Step inot Liquid” movie. Bunch of surfers in my family, girls and guys.

    • Beth Hull · January 25, 2013

      Ooh, I watched “Step Into Liquid” last week and really really enjoyed it. Maybe not as much as “Riding Giants,” but close. Still got “Endless Summer” on the Netflix queue.

      • PB Rippey · January 25, 2013

        Riding Giants was fascinating. I’m sure my niece would be happy to answer any surfer girl questions. She never competed, but was part of surf camp and had her own board. I, too, am afraid of sharks. Not so unfounded considering all the great white sightings they had this summer in Santa Barbara….

        • Beth Hull · January 25, 2013

          Sharks…eeeeee. Thanks for volunteering your niece–I’ll keep her in mind. I’m sure I’ll have some specific questions in the next month or two.

  5. Maggie · January 26, 2013

    Odd Girl Out was really good. I wish I had read it when I was in middle school/high school.

    • Beth Hull · January 26, 2013

      I think it should be required reading for high schoolers, and I wish there were a sort of “digest” for middle schoolers. Maybe there is already?

  6. Vicki Tremper · January 28, 2013

    Surfing? Hmm. If you’re into the war-torn Sudan thing, I’ve got a book for you. But don’t worry, it isn’t published yet so you don’t need to add it to your ever increasing pile.

    • Beth Hull · January 28, 2013

      I finished Terry Farley’s book, and it was outstanding and beautiful, and so sad in places I couldn’t even handle it. But tell me about the war-torn Sudan book, anyway. 🙂 Did you write it?

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