I’ve had one other class where blog posts and comments were a large aspect of the course. I think these posts allowed for deeper discussion that bounced back between classes and online writings. However, the written weekly reviews we had to complete was a new experience for me. I think I’ve mentioned before how I don’t really read all that much, and even when I do, I tend to read things very shallowly. Knowing that I had to write the reviews forced me to think about the story and character dynamics more than I usually would, which I appreciated. I also liked that I didn’t have to necessarily have a positive view on the books that we read and that there was freedom to share any and all feelings we had while reading the assigned books.
When I got time, I did skim over what other people thought about our readings for the week. I will admit that I often enjoyed reading Bobby’s reviews just because his writing style is so lively and has a clear voice (and also because 4 out of 5 times I agreed with what he thought). I found that most of our class generally had the same opinions over the books we read though, so there wasn’t much reason to read the details of each and every review each week.
This course itself wasn’t what I expected. I know I’m going to sound naïve for saying this, but I honestly didn’t think we’d be reading as much as we did. I mean, a book a week is a lot for somebody who doesn’t read too often in the first place! But I generally enjoyed being exposed to [most of] these different novels. I got to find out what I did and didn’t like, and I was actually excited some weeks to go back and tell my friends about some of the discussions we had in class. It obviously wasn’t the best class I’ve had at Temple since I’m not an English major and have little interest in science-y things, but it really wasn’t bad at all for what it was. I think a lot of that has to do with the class atmosphere. We had a good balance of funny, serious, and tense moments, which I think is necessary for any proper class.