The theme for my 2015 is totally clear: Reading.

Books, bookstores, book contests, books books books. Hot on the heels of the Independent Bookstore Day challenge came Summer Book Bingo, the Seattle Public Library and Seattle Arts & Lectures’ totally awesome summer reading program for adults.

Get a Bingo, get entered for a gift certificate from a bookstore. Do a Blackout, get entered for a chance at season tickets to Seattle Arts & Lectures’ next season and books by all the speakers. Deadline: Labor Day.



I’m 10 down, thanks to a week’s vacation in which I read all day long, like I haven’t since I wore pigtails. Head down happily inside inside a book for actual hours at a time. (I read a lot, but in and around everything else, in bits. Modern life, you are kind of a poopyhead that way.)

The bingo squares have been making me seek out books I wouldn’t have necessarily have picked up, and/or books I’ve been meaning to read for ages. For the Banned book square, for example, I finally read Persepolis, which I’ve been meaning to get around to since it came out (in like 2002). And Ceremony is slated for the You Own, But Had Never Read square—I think that’s been on my bookshelf since the late 90s.

And I’ve gotten some wonderful recommendations from booksellers. Author Under 30’s Selected Unpublished Blog Posts of a Mexican Panda Express Employee was recommended by Alexander at Open Books: A Poetry Emporium, for instance. Lots of local bookstores have Book Bingo displays with more suggestions.

I’m also loving the recommendations from Seattle librarians—you can send SPL a list of books you liked and why and they’ll send you back a list of new recommendations. The ones I got were great, thoughtful suggestions, including My Animals and Other Family, which I’m reading for the Memoir square. (Feeling nostalgic about the genre of books I read the most as a kid, I’d asked for a horse book for adults.) They have other suggestions lists for the different squares, or you can also just tweet at SPL—I just this morning got a reply asking for a good book set in Malta, which is Somewhere I’ve Always Wanted to Visit.

I will post reviews of all these books anon, but coming up next: a list of poetry collections that will satisfy a bunch of these bingo squares…