LITTLE LETTERS is fun blogging event hosted by Rissi @ Dreaming Under the Same Moon. Be sure to link up at her blog if you’re participating! (and leave your link here, I’m curious to see what’s on your letters too)
A little out of order this week but to start,
Dear Little Letters, it’s clearly been a while since I’ve done one of these! xD
Well, here we are at the end of another month. Hope you all had a lovely March and that spring is finally making an appearance on your end (unlike where I am xP) 😉 Or autumn, if you’re in the southern hemisphere 🙂
Not my gif (as always). I loved this scene from the second Thor movie
- March was another great month of reading, including Marina Fiorato’s The Venetian Contract (review), Patricia A. McKillip’s The Bards of Bone Plain (review) and Anish Majumdar’s The Isolation Door (review). You can check out all the books I’ve reviewed recently in the book review tag.
- I also posted some reviews from ARCs that I read recently, including Lucinda Riley’s The Midnight Rose (review and Anthony Summers’ The Secret Worlds of Stephen Ward: Sex, Scandal, and Deadly Secrets in the Profumo Affair (review). You can check out all of the ARCs that I recently read in this tag.
- I’ve also participated in a two awesome book tours this month:
- Watched some movies this month, whoo-hoo!
- Also had a bit of a Shakespeare fix this month: I read 2 plays as part of the 2014 Shakespeare Reading Challenge and also started watching the 2012 production of The Hollow Crown. You can read my review of the first episode, Richard II over here.
- Tolkien Reading Day was last week, on the 25th. Celebrated it by posting a ton of LOTR-related posts as well as reflecting a bit on this year’s theme on a post I made on the actual day. I was also kindly interviewed by the awesome bloggers over at Pages Unbound as part of their Tolkien Reading Week 🙂
- And finally, some random pluggage: 3 Books That Define You? It’s a great question, had me thinking for a while there 🙂
And that’s about it from me for the month of March! Hopefully April will bring more spring-like weather on my end and for everyone here in the northern hemisphere *fingers crossed* Have a wonderful week 🙂
So an interesting tweet popped up on my feed on Friday:
Original tweet link, in case anyone wants or needs it
It had me thinking: what three books would I choose that summarises who I am, my life, my essence (so to speak)? At first I was wondering how to interpret this question but I guess they left it open enough to approach it in whatever way you want. I read through some of the replies and given Twitter’s 140 character limit, it doesn’t help understanding the choices people have made. So I’ve decided to dwell on the question a bit and answer it here on my blog 🙂
- E.M. Forster’s The Longest Journey (commentary) — It’s hard for me to explain why I chose this book, actually; it was the first one that popped in my head when I started thinking about this question. The Longest Journey is one of his lesser-known works (perhaps his least known, much to my chagrin). I think I chose it because it both encapsulates my own feelings and sentiments about my goals and my dreams while at the same time serves as a sort of cautionary tale for what happens when you completely give up (in a spiritual sense?) in exchange for convention and expectation. I don’t know if that makes sense, but yeah, I hold this novel quite dearly to my heart for all of the themes and dreams that it holds.
- Rainbow Rowell’s Fangirl (review) — Is it fair for me to say that all of us bookworms and book bloggers who read this novel more or less related to the character of Cath on some level? Because I certainly did! Cath’s involvement in fandoms very much reminded me of my high school/undergrad days and while I don’t interact as much with fandom these days, the feelings and occasional excursions to what everything is doing (the conversation, the speculation, the fanart and gifsets on Tumblr) were definitely captured in the book. Her attempts to write something of her own also struck a chord with the writer side of me.
- J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings (review #1, #2, #3) — No, I didn’t find a closet that led me to Middle Earth. Nor have a fought sword battles or climbed my way to a live volcano or was crowned king of a vast kingdom. Yes, LOTR is my favourite book, but it also represents a part of my life: my love of history and myths and lore, of languages (a later development) and of the imagination. I spent my high school years reading everything I can of everything Middle Earth related that it really is a part of my life even now.
(It could have easily been expanded to 4 or 6 books but I’ve managed to restrain myself today 😉 )
And so I pass the question to you: what three books define you as a person/your life/as a reader perhaps? Why did you choose those three books? Feel free to link up in the comments, I’d love to read your choices 😉
The Good Luck of Right Now
By: Matthew Quick
Format/Source: Paperback; won a copy from HarperCollinsCA via a Twitter contest
Call it fate. Call it synchronicity. Call it an act of God. Call it . . . The Good Luck of Right Now. From the New York Times bestselling author of The Silver Linings Playbook comes an entertaining and inspiring tale that will leave you pondering the rhythms of the universe and marveling at the power of kindness and love.
For thirty-eight years, Bartholomew Neil has lived with his mother. When she gets sick and dies, he has no idea how to be on his own. His redheaded grief counselor, Wendy, says he needs to find his flock and leave the nest. But how does a man whose whole life has been grounded in his mom, Saturday mass, and the library learn how to fly?
Bartholomew thinks he’s found a clue when he discovers a “Free Tibet” letter from Richard Gere hidden in his mother’s underwear drawer. In her final days, mom called him Richard—there must be a cosmic connection. Believing that the actor is meant to help him, Bartholomew awkwardly starts his new life, writing Richard Gere a series of highly intimate letters. Jung and the Dalai Lama, philosophy and faith, alien abduction and cat telepathy, the Catholic Church and the mystery of women are all explored in his soul-baring epistles. But mostly the letters reveal one man’s heartbreakingly earnest attempt to assemble a family of his own.
A struggling priest, a “Girlbrarian,” her feline-loving, foul-mouthed brother, and the spirit of Richard Gere join the quest to help Bartholomew. In a rented Ford Focus, they travel to Canada to see the cat Parliament and find his biological father . . . and discover so much more.
This novel has been getting a lot of buzz in the recent weeks leading up to its release. I have not read a novel by Matthew Quick (also heard a lot of buzz about his other novel, Silver Linings Playbook) and the premise of this novel sounded quirky and intereresting. I was pleasantly surprised to learn that I won a copy of this novel from HarperCollinsCA through one of their #BookBattle Twitter events. May contain minor spoilers ahead!
My Wish List: A Novel
By: Gregoire Delacourt
Format/Source: Advanced Reading Copy courtesy of Penguin Books
A cathartic, charmingly tender, assuredly irresistible novel, My Wish List imagines one answer to the question: If you won the lottery, would you trade your life for the life of your dreams? With sales of more than half a million copies in France alone, rights sold in twenty-five countries, and a major motion picture in development, this slim yet spirited tale has sewn up the interest of the literary world.
Jocelyne Guerbette is a forty-seven year old who runs a modest fabric shop in a nondescript provincial French town. Her husband—instead of dreaming of her—wants nothing more in life than a flat-screen TV and the complete James Bond DVD box set. And to Jocelyne’s two grown-up children, who live far from home, she’s become nothing but an obligatory phone call. Perpetually wondering what has happened to all the dreams she had when she was younger, Jocelyne finally comes to terms with the series of ordinary defeats and small lies that seem to make up her life.
But then Jocelyne wins the lottery: $25,500,000! And suddenly she finds the world at her fingertips. But before cashing the check, before telling a soul, she starts making a list of all the things she could do with the money. While evaluating the small pleasures in life—her friendship with the twins who manage the hairdresser next door, her holidays away, her sewing blog that’s gaining popularity—she begins to think that the everyday ordinary may not be so bad. Does she really want her life to change?
My Wish List is an essential reminder of the often-overlooked joys of everyday life and a celebration of the daily rituals, serendipities, and small acts of love that make life quietly wonderful
It’s always great to see a new novel translated to English from another language. The premise of this novel caught my attention because it’s something I think many of us wonder about: what if we won the lottery? What would we do with the money? How would out lives change? I kindly received an advanced reading copy of this novel from the publishers as part of a book blog tour for this novel; it will be available on 25 March 2014.
Be sure to stick around as at the end of the post, I am also hosting a book giveaway for a chance to win a copy of this book! (open to US/Canada residents only–sorry international readers!)