Just before Christmas, I signed up for a Goodreads account. I'd been curious for a while about how Goodreads works, and if it would help me stay motivated to read more in the new year. I was delighted to find that one can set up a 'Reading Challenge' goal for the year to track your progress towards a target.

I've set myself the goal of reading 52 books, which is 1 per week. I know it's not likely that I'll hit this target, but I'm hoping that by aiming high I'll land at a number I'm proud of. That said, I love a reading challenge! In primary school, we were supposed to read 6 books in 6 weeks during the summer break, and I managed to read 36 one summer. Reading challenges are evidently the only way bring out my latent competitive streak.

I've got an exciting stack of books in my 'to-read' pile already, to carry me into February. Once I've read these, I'll have an excuse to treat myself to some from my ever-growing wishlist. Most books on my pile so far have a 'deathy' theme, which is fantastic for motivating me towards some of my bigger plans for 2020.

Death and the Afterlife: A Chronological Journey from Cremation to Quantum Ressurection
I picked this beautiful book up during my recent visit to Wellcome Collection in London. Whilst we shouldn't judge books by their cover, I couldn't resist the allure of this weighty and bold design. Inside is a guide to how humans have interacted with death from the beginning of our knowledge to the potential of the future, complete with breathtaking illustrations, art, and photography. Covering spirituality, execution, care of the dead, and everything inbetween, Death and the Afterlife is a guide I'm eager to read.

Medieval Bodies
Medieval Bodies has been on my wishlist for a while, and I found it at a bargain price, tucked away in an independent bookshop in Caernarfon. It's a multidisciplinary guide to how we related to our humanity through the medieval period. Combining art, poetry, philosophy, medicine, and more, framed within a cultural, social, and political context, Medieval Bodies illuminates what it meant to live as a human in medieval Europe. 

The Viktor Wynd Museum of Unnatural History
The Viktor Wynd Museum of Curiosities is one of the most bizarre places in London. From strange and enchanting taxidermies and art to downright disgusting artifacts, their small basement is filled with curios beyond your imagination. The Viktor Wynd Museum of Unnatural History is the guidebook to this bizarre collection and the journey these curios took to reach Wynd's macabre basement. When I visited, I was fascinated and horrified by the array of oddities, and made ever-more curious by the lack of interpretation in the exhibitions. I was itching to learn more, and this book is the only way to do it.

Poems Bewitched and Haunted
Poems Bewitched and Haunted was given to me as a gift many moons ago, and aside from flicking to the odd poem, I haven't yet made time to sit and read through this anthology properly. This is a tiny book filled with the magic of autumn, witchcraft, and the esoteric. I am very much looking forward to getting cosy and making more space for poetry in my life. 

Death: A Graveside Companion
Death, death, and more death. I cannot get enough. Another 'comprehensive guide to death', Death: A Graveside Companion features essays, photographs, and illustrations covering the multitude of ways we interact with death, including hair art, spiritualism in photography, and anatomical study. Whilst this tome is far too heavy to carry around, I'm excited to get cosy under a blanket and devour the lessons this companion has to offer.

What's on your reading list for 2020? 


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1 comment:

  1. Good luck with your reading goals list for this year darling, I'm sending you so much love. 💜

    With love, Alisha Valerie x | www.alishavalerie.com