Updated on October 14, 2018
This week is the Space Readathon, an annual readathon run by Sanne at the YouTube channel booksandquills. I’ve never participated before, but when I saw her video this year I thought I just had to join in!
The idea of the Space Readathon is to spend a week (15–21 October) reading books about space (well, I’m not exactly short on those…), but Sanne has also set some reading challenges. Here they are:
1. Post your Readathon ‘To Be Read’ list
I’m planning on picking up three books this week. My main read will be The Three-Body Problem by Cixin Liu. From the blurb it doesn’t sound particularly space-y, but I believe it kicks off a series that does end up in space, and there are some astronomical ideas in there (the title comes from a mathematical problem to do with orbiting objects). I’m sure some actual space will appear in there somewhere, and anyway, I’ve been wanting to read it for ages!
As a quick extra read, I’ll be picking up Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator by Roald Dahl. This book follows on from the end of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, after Willy Wonka’s glass elevator bursts out of the factory roof and goes all the way into space. I don’t think I’ve ever read this one before, so I’m pretty excited about it.
Finally, if I fancy something a bit shorter, I’ll be dipping into the Jan/Feb 2018 issue of Asimov’s Science Fiction. My subscription to Asimov’s ran out at the beginning of this year and I still haven’t gotten round to reading this issue, but there are some space stories in there which I’m excited to get to (plus a short story by Cixin Liu).
2. Choose which book characters would be in your space crew
This is a tricky one, because I can think of plenty of book characters I definitely wouldn’t want to be stuck on a spaceship with. But here goes…
Isabella from the Lady Trent series is a must, as she’s an adventurer and scientist; and her husband Suhail can come too because he’s a linguist and might be able to crack alien languages. Matilda from Matilda would come in handy for heavy lifting. Will and Lyra from His Dark Materials would be fiercely loyal and throw themselves into any danger for the crew (plus I’d love to see them reunited), and I’d probably chuck Decibel Jones from Space Opera in there, because he could keep us all entertained on our travels.
Actually, this crew sounds pretty good. Can we sort this out, please?
3. Wear a space-themed item while reading
This is going to be an easy one for me, because I’ve become quite obsessed with space-themed jewellery, and on any given day I’ll usually be wearing one of these anyway. I have a Moon landing necklace, space shuttle earrings and (my favourite) a solar system necklace with all the planets! I got them from Eclectic Eccentricity.
4. Read a space-themed book with no stars on the cover
There are no stars on the cover of my issue of Asimov’s, so I’ll just squeak through with that one even though it’s technically a magazine, not a book.
5. Read a space-themed classic
Again, stretching the rules on this one, but isn’t everything Roald Dahl wrote a classic? Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator will have to do!
So those are my plans for the Space Readathon this week. If you want to take part, you can have a go at these challenges too and share your progress using the hashtag #spacereadathon.
Happy reading, space cowboys!