However, when it comes to book lists, I am a little like Emma Woodhouse. I can have every intention of reading all the ones I've written down, but somehow as soon as I bind myself to do it I have absolutely no interest in following through. They are suddenly dull and uninteresting, or just not suited to my mood. Since this has happened a number of times, I tend not to make them anymore; I don't even use the "to-read" function of Goodreads, which I think for most people is just a glorified way of taking a book under advisement so as to forget it faster.
On the other hand, I don't like footling about. I like structure and planning, because otherwise when I finish one book I can't decide what sort I want to read next, and so I pick up something I think will suit. And then I am self-obliged to finish it, even if I get a quarter of the way in and realize it isn't what I wanted to read and why on earth did I pick it up when there are a score of others I actually do want to read? I suppose that is a hazard that comes with an excessive amount of books (is there such a thing?) in one house: you can't see the forest of literature for the bookish trees.
Last month, then, I decided I would go ahead and make a list. Not a list of books I am going to read in a set amount of months, or anything like that: just the ones I most want or need to read, to keep me (hopefully) from being distracted by others. It seems to have gone well enough so far. We'll see if it keeps up.
a few of the unconquered tomes
Wuthering Heights - Emily Bronte
Oliver Twist - Charles Dickens
Washington - Ron Chernow
Dragonwitch - Anne Elisabeth Stengl
The Conquering Family - Thomas Costain
Under Enemy Colours - S. Thomas Russell
The Mark of the Horselord - Rosemary Sutcliff
The King of Attolia - Megan Whalen Turner
God in the Dock - C.S. Lewis
The Winter Prince - Elizabeth Wein
the conquered ones
The Woman in White - Wilkie Collins
Right Ho, Jeeves - P.G. Wodehouse
The Last Plantagenets - Thomas Costain
Wodehouse hardly constitutes a grueling read, but I was careful to speckle the list with lighter works as well as ones with which you could knock a man senseless, such as Washington, or which take some trudging, like Arthur Custance's series.
the ongoing sieges
The Seed of Abraham - Albertus Pieters
Echoes of the Ancient Skies - E.C. Krupp
The Black Arrow - R.L. Stevenson
Plenilune - Jennifer Freitag
The annoying thing about reading a book that isn't yet published is, you can't boast about it on Goodreads. What is the good of reading at all if you can't boast on Goodreads, I'd like to know?