We’re leaving tomorrow morning for the beach – Kill Devil Hills, NC (Outer Banks.) I’ve been to South Carolina beaches many times, but never to the Outer Banks. We like to go on vacation in the off-season, before it gets too crowded and expensive. We’re not big on swimming in the ocean, so the cooler temps won’t bother us. In my book, here’s nothing better than walking on the beach. (And with an almost four-year-old boy, there’s not much sitting allowed!) I’m so excited! I’ve got a lot of packing to do, and of course, I’m packing some books. Trouble is, I’m not sure what I’ll want to read.
I finished my last book yesterday Gretchen Rubin’s Better Than Before: Mastering the Habits of our Everyday Lives. I don’t know if you’ve ever read any of her other books – The Happiness Project or Happier at Home. Personally, I find her incredibly irritating. But I can’t make myself stop reading her books! It’s like she’s got a weird mind control hold on me or something. I’m also a terrible sucker for self-help books, so that’s part of it. Especially about happiness/de-cluttering/habits/food and weight issues, all of which make the core of her latest book. I found this one to be better and more helpful than the previous two, and found Rubin herself to be not as annoying a presence. She seems to be owning up to her rigidity, and recognizing that not everyone is like her, for which I give her some credit. Still, it didn’t light up my life, so I gave it three stars out of five.
I’m not sure how much reading I’ll get done next week – but I know that before bed I’ll read a bit, as is my habit, and I’ll probably get to read some during my son’s nap time. (Assuming he takes a nap!) So I’m taking a few books with me, in case I start something that I’m just not in the mood for. Here’s what I’ve got:
- How to Raise a Wild Child: The Art and Science of Falling in Love With Nature by Scott D. Sampson (I want to deepen my own connection with nature as well as cement my son’s engagement.)
- My Brilliant Friend by Elena Ferrante (I heard so much about the third book in this series during this year’s Tournament of Books that I had to order the first and see what the fuss was all about.)
- Love in the Time of Cholera by Gabriel Garcia Marquez (One of my reading goals this year is to finally read this book!)
- Hangsaman by Shirley Jackson (This is my year of discovering Shirley Jackson.)
None of these is exactly what you’d call a “beach read.” But I don’t really subscribe to the notion that one has to read lighter fare when on vacation. Who says? So I’ll read my nonfiction, my dark fiction, and my translations, thank you very much. Or maybe I won’t read much of anything next week at all. Who knows? I just want a couple of sunny days to romp around on the beach and explore the sand dunes at Jockey’s Ridge State Park – tallest sand dunes in the Eastern United States! Doesn’t that sound cool?
So what kinds of books do you like to take along with you on your vacations? Do you take e-books or audio books, or are you a physical book devotee? Or do you usually not read much at all when you’re away on holiday?