This was my first time participating in Dewey's 24 Hour Read-a-thon and I'm pretty pleased with my results. I lasted the full 24 hours and far exceeded my book goal. Here are some general observations I've made about the experience:
1)For me, it's better to over-plan for these events. When I've done the 48 Hour Reading Challenge, I pent weeks picking out books and rearranging my planned reading order for optimum length and genre assortment. This time I just picked the next ten or so books on my to-read list which lead to some genre-clusters and topics that I was not thrilled about in the very early morning hours when I needed engaging books to keep me going. I also usually swear off caffeine for a week prior to a reading challenge, which I did not do this time and sorely regretted.
2)British voices make me sleepy. Or at the very least, the don't keep me awake. I'd selected the audio of Arthur and the Minimoys for those times when I couldn't read print and as funny and adventurous as that story is, Jim Dale's soothing voice didn't help me stay awake.
3)I liked having the mini-challenges available. While I didn't participate in most them, they helped mark the passage of time and helped me estimate my progress/potential need for more books.
My favorites from this weekend:
Both of these book surprised me. I had anticipated Girl in the Blue Coat being my favorite read. And I did enjoy it. But When We Collided surprised me with it's depth, humor, and heart. While the first book is more serious and contemplative, When We Collided charmed me to no end.
Weekends with Max and His Dad was my favorite juvenile read. I only read three books this weekend that I would qualify and juvenile fiction, but Katherine Applegate's Crenshaw was one of them and I'm a big fan of her work. I only even included Weekends with Max and His Dad on my list because I knew it would be quick and a nice change of pace in the late evening hours when I needed refreshing. This book used humor and innovation to bring a young boy through a potentially traumatic time - his parent's divorce. There is a notable lack of drama, just typical kid situations with a quirky perspective and loads of fun details.