to be read

August 2021 TBR and the MS Readathon

Hello bookworms!! Welcome to the August 2021 TBR post, where I will also be talking about the MS Readathon.

So… I admit that I get pretty shady when it comes to TBRs. The last one I posted was for Middle-Grade March. And it was so bad that I didn’t read a single thing ON the TBR. But not just that. I didn’t read a single middle grade book, full stop. In fact, I ended up going in the complete opposite direction, and reading only romance / smut books. So, to say it was a complete disaster isn’t really that far from the truth.

However, August will be less about keeping myself to a specific genre, and more about reading as many books as I possibly can. While also raising awareness (and hopefully some funds) for the MS Readathon.

So, I’m going to tell you a bit about the Readathon to start with, and then we’ll delve into what I might possibly read during August.

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What is the MS Readathon

So, the MS Readathon is a fundraiser and awareness campaign for Multiple Sclerosis (MS). MS is a debilitating disability that can affect people of all ages. MS is an autoimmune disease, where your immune system attacks your central nervous system (the thing that sends messages to your limbs so that you can move). This can affect your brain, spine and eyes.

The Readathon has been running in Australia for over 40 years, and it happens in other countries too. The funds raised go to the MS Society, and they distribute them across a couple of different functions.

Funds from the Readathon primarily go to vital support services, like the special MS Family Camps and Family Fun Days. These camps provide an opportunity for kids who have a parent living with multiple sclerosis to spend quality time with their family, learn more about multiple sclerosis and bond with other kids who are sharing their journey. If you’d like to learn more about this cause, feel free to check out the website: MS Readathon.

My history with the MS Readathon

I’ve always been big on fundraising. As a kid, my parents and grandparents taught me that we were born fortunate through complete coincidence. Even when we struggled some because my dad had contractors go bankrupt on him, we always had enough for food on the table. My grandmother raised money for her church and the local Country Women’s Association, and my school did annual fundraisers such as Jump Rope for Heart, the 40 Hour Famine, and one year my class (of 30 kids) each donated $1 per month and we sponsored a kid through World Vision. I have loved sharing this with my nephews and nieces, and we always pick out a present for the Christmas Giving Tree, and give to canned drives.

However, the MS Readathon has always been my favourite fundraiser. Mainly because it involves READING. But also because when I was a kid, you got sponsored per book you read. For instance, if someone sponsored you $1 per book, and you read 30 books, they would give you $30 for the fundraiser at the end of August. Can you see where I’m going with this? It involves my competitive streak… 😂

One of my favourite memories of doing the Readathon when I was at school goes like this. My dad was a small business owner (electrician), and he had about 8 people working for him. Every July in the lead up to the Readathon, he would have a team meeting and advise them not to sponsor me more than 10c per book, or I would bankrupt them. (This was about 25 years ago.)

One year, one of the new guys missed the memo, or didn’t believe dad. I was about 11 or 12. Keith sponsored me 50c per book. I thought he was the best person ever, as even mum and dad only did 20c. That year I read 104 books. Which was $52 for poor Keith. In today’s money (using the handy inflation calculator I found), that would by just under $100. Suffice to say, I don’t recall Keith sponsoring me again.

Why I’m doing the MS Readathon now

The MS Readathon is a bit different these days. You just fundraise and people donate what they can, which is probably a better option that when I was a kid. (Sorry Keith!!) And it still is primarily for kids.

Except, last year they opened it up to adults as well. And my heart almost exploded with rapturous joy. Because I always choose one or two fundraisers to personally do each year, and this one just became an annual staple again. For two reasons:

  1. I love books (obvs), and reading books and encouraging kids to read is one of the best things you can do for future generations.
  2. As someone who has autoimmune diseases (although not MS), this is one of the ways that I can give back – by spreading more awareness and raising funds.

I could talk more about autoimmune diseases and my personal experience, but I’ll save that for another day.  You can donate to my page for the readathon here: Meeghan’s MS Readathon page link

Now, let’s get to the fun part – the books!!

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August 2021 TBR

Just in case I didn’t mention it earlier, there are NO prompts or challenges. The goal is to read as many books as you possibly can. BUT, I am behind on my Goodreads goal, and also VERY far behind on my goal to read Backlist books in 2021. So, I’ve split this up into ‘New Books’ (2021 published) that I was to read, and ‘Backlist Books’ (pre-2021 published).

Obviously I don’t expect to read 20 books in a month… But, I’m going to read as many as I can!!

new books

Yes, let’s look at all the shiny ones that I have recently (this year) gotten my grubby little mitts on, that I absolutely MUST READ IMMEDIATELY. Because I have zero chill. Also, have I mentioned that they are shiny and new?!

  • Any Way the Way the Wind Blows by Rainbow RowellAny Way the Wind Blows – Rainbow Rowell (this is actually my current read, but I didn’t read much in July…)
  • The Witch King – H.E. Edgmon
  • Jay’s Gay Agenda – Jason June
  • The City of Zirdai – Maria V. Snyder
  • Kate in Waiting – Becky Albertalli
  • Yolk – Mary H. K. Choi
  • Fat Chance Charlie Vega – Crystal Maldonado
  • Fence: Disarmed – Sarah Rees Brennan
  • People We Meet on Vacation – Emily Henry
  • The Road Trip – Beth O’Leary

backlist books

Funnily enough, I’m actually stealing some books from my March TBR here, because there are some middle grade books I want to get to this time around.

  • The Girl Who Speaks Bear by Sophie AndersonThe Girl Who Speaks Bear – Sophie Anderson
  • Such Big Teeth – Gabby Hutchinson Crouch
  • A Tale of Magic – Chris Colfer
  • The School for Good and Evil – Soman Chainani
  • The Little Prince – Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
  • The Trouble With Hating You – Sajni Patel
  • Warlock Holmes: A Study in Brimstome – G.S. Denning
  • The Girl in the Tower – Katherine Arden
  • Aurora Burning – Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff
  • The Scorpio Races – Maggie Stiefvater (reread)

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What are you planning to read in August?

until next time, happy reading! Meeghan xo

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