Category: Meme

7th Annual End of the Year Book Survey

Posted 9 January, 2017 by Lianne in Meme / 6 Comments

(image source)

How is it that it’s 2017 already? As you may have figured, I was not able to post my responses to Jamie @ Perpetual Page-Turner‘s End of the Year Book Survey last month as I was busy migrating this blog to a new server, but on the plus side it did give me a bit more time to think about the books I read over the course of 2016…ish… 🙂

To those interested, here’s my previous years’ entries. And without further ado:

2016 Reading Stats

Number Of Books You Read:
According to my personal record that I’ve been keeping track of, I’ve read 213 books last year

Number of Re-Reads:
According to said list, 20 books (down from last year; funny, it felt like I re-read more, but I guess not)

Genre You Read The Most From:
According to Goodreads fantasy takes the top spot again fro me this year, followed by historical fiction

Best In Books

01. Best Book You Read In 2016? (If you have to cheat — you can break it down by genre if you want or 2015 release vs. backlist)
I’m too lazy this year to break it down by genre, so off the top of my head:

  • Andre Alexis’ Fifteen Dogs (review)
  • Alexander Lernet-Holenia’s Mona Lisa (review)
  • Maria Rainer Rilke’s The Notebooks of Malte Laurids Briggs (review)
  • Seanan McGuire’s Every Heart a Doorway (review)
  • Mhairi MacFarlane’s You Had Me at Hello (review)
  • Rupi Kaur’s Milk and Honey (review)
  • Alice Hoffman’s Faithful (review)

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Top Ten Tuesdays

Posted 27 September, 2016 by Lianne in Meme / 14 Comments

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created here at The Broke and the Bookish. This meme was created because we are particularly fond of lists here at The Broke and the Bookish. We’d love to share our lists with other bookish folks and would LOVE to see your top ten lists!

This week’s topic: Books on my Autumn TBR

Yaaassss, it’s that time of season again: cooler weather and books I plan on reading this season 😉

In no particular order:

  1. The Frozen Heart by Almuneda Grandes — This was the only book from my summer TBR list that carried over, lol. I actually did start reading it, but then other books cropped up and drew my attention away. But I think there’s a very good chance I will finally read this title this autumn season 😉
  2. Everything Beautiful Began After by Simon van Booy — I’ve been wanting to read this book for a very long time. There’s something about the title alone that makes it perfect as an autumn read…
  3. Sidney Chambers and the Shadow of Death by James Runcie — I still haven’t watched series 1 of Granchester but in the meantime I look forward to reading the first book in the series that the show was based off on 🙂
  4. The Trails by Robert Moor — I received this book from Simon & Schuster CA. I had seen it in passing but yeah, now I’m curious about it…
  5. Time and Again by Jack Finney — This book has been on my TBR for a few years now…With Sci-Fi Month coming up, maybe this is the time (and the year) to read it?
  6. Brian McClellan’s Promise of Blood — I think I started it once months back but then decided to pick it up again at a later date. Not that my TBR has gotten any smaller since, but there’s something about the book that makes me think of the autumn time…
  7. Vicious by V.E. Schwab — Is this the season that I finally read something by V.E. Schwab? I have this and A Darker Shade of Magic sitting on my TBR pile waiting to be read…
  8. Worst. Person. Ever by Douglas Coupland — It’s been so long since I’ve read anything by Douglas Coupland…
  9. Fragile Things by Neil Gaiman — There’s something about the autumn time that’s perfect for cozying up to a Neil Gaiman book (or two; I also have Anansi Boys on my TBR pile)…
  10. The Tenant of Wildfell Hall by Anne Bronte — Throwing in a classic to my TBR list as I haven’t read very many classics this year (I think it’s because the classics that are sitting on my eReader waiting to be read are such chunksters…have to be in a particular mood to read them). This is the only major Bronte book I haven’t read yet so it would be nice to finally get around to reading it 🙂

And those are the books that I plan on reading this autumn season! What books are you planning on reading? Lrt me know, I’d love to hear from you!

Top Ten Tuesdays

Posted 13 September, 2016 by Lianne in Meme / 14 Comments

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created here at The Broke and the Bookish. This meme was created because we are particularly fond of lists here at The Broke and the Bookish. We’d love to share our lists with other bookish folks and would LOVE to see your top ten lists!

This week’s topic: Top Ten ALL TIME Favorite Books Of X Genre

Horrible topic! j/k, but how am I suppose to narrow it down to 10, lol? And there’s the matter of genre…have I done classic literature for a list like this? If not, yes, let’s go with that 😛 Note that I’m not including plays (sorry Shakespeare (see author tag)) and poetry (sorry, The Kalevala (review) & Dante’s Inferno) here, just straight-up literary prose.

In no particular order:

  1. Persuasion by Jane Austen (review) — Surprised, anyone? I think my review/commentary says it all 😉
  2. North & South by Elizabeth Gaskell (review) — Again, surprised? Thank you, BBC adaptation for introducing me to this wonderful classic *hearts and stars*
  3. The Longest Journey by E.M. Forster (review) — I also love A Room With a View (review) but this underrated E.M. Forster gets the favourite spot because of some of the themes it tackles. Highly recommended if you haven’t read it/come across it before!
  4. Fathers & Sons by Ivan Turgenev (review) — I was introduced to this classic in my undergraduate studies and it remains to date my favourite Ivan Turgenev novel and my favourite Russian classic. Turgenev does a wonderful job in portraying the ideas that were circulating during the time amongst the intelligentsia whilst weaving quite a story.
  5. Our Mutual Friend by Charles Dickens (review) — One of my earliest Dickens novels read, it remains one of my favourites with the themes it tackles, the story it tells, and of course introducing me to one of my favourite characters, Eugene Wrayburn 😉
  6. The House of Mirth by Edith Wharton (review) — I’ve read a number of her books to date and enjoyed almost all of them but this remains my favourite. It’s quite the tragedy (most of it self-inflicted) but very compelling IMO.
  7. Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy (review) — Tolstoy is quite the master of telling a sweeping tale, but what I love about this book is how he balances that panoramic view of Russian society with the internal character drama. Stunning stuff.
  8. Oblomov by Ivan Goncharov (review) — Gah, I love this underrated Russian classic. The premise was hilarious–the guy spent half the novel in bed with people coming in and out and not leaving him alone–but in true Russian fashion the story takes a quick turn to the tragic with a lot of interesting themes to boot.
  9. Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte (review) — What else is there to say about Jane Eyre? The characters, the story, the writing…
  10. The Notebooks of Malte Laurid Briggs by Maria Rainer Rilke — A recent read that quickly became a favourite for me with Rilke’s lyricism. There’s no plot per se but his presentation of the human condition and human experiences through the character of Malte Laurid Briggs had me glued from start to finish.

And that’s my list for this week! What are some of your favourite classic titles? What genre did you choose for this week’s TTT? Let me know, I’d love to hear from you! 🙂

Top Ten Tuesdays

Posted 30 August, 2016 by Lianne in Meme / 13 Comments

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created here at The Broke and the Bookish. This meme was created because we are particularly fond of lists here at The Broke and the Bookish. We’d love to share our lists with other bookish folks and would LOVE to see your top ten lists!

This week’s topic: Back to School Freebie

Hmm, this has to be the first September in ages that I’m not going back to school or anything but anyway, for this week’s freebie I decided to go with Books to Complement a History Lesson because duh, studied history and everything 😉 For this week’s list though I’m going to format it a bit differently…

If you’re studying Russian history, read…

Fathers & Sons by Ivan Turgenev (review) — I was studying 19th century Imperial Russian history when this book was on the required reading list. Good choice on my professor’s part as it really captures the state of the intelligentsia and the ideas kicking around during the early 19th century. Highly recommended!

If you’re studying Soviet history, read…

Animal Farm by George Orwell — The classic alliteration of the Russian Revolution of 1917. I was personally glad to have read it when I did and not any sooner as knowing the events of the revolution and the characters and political groups involved really adds to the richness of Orwell’s short tale. I also recommend 1984 if you’re studying Stalinist history & histories of authoritarian regimes!

The Archivist’s Story by Travis Holland (review) — For those studying Stalinist history. This is a different take as it focuses more on the Great Terror and the mass arrests that was happening in the late 1930s, the censorship involved, the rewriting of history and covering up events. Again, eerie stuff, but the book is beautifully written.

Russian Winter by Daphne Kalotay (review) — Okay, so basically if you’re studying Soviet history, I’m a trove of information if you’re looking for fiction set during the period 😛 I also recommend reading this book if you’re studying the Stalinist period leading up to World War Two; this book focuses a lot on the intelligentsia (the writers and the artists/stage performers) living under the regime at the time and the policies that they had to work under (Socialist Realism, the role of the Central Committee in the production of art and thought). I was personally pleasantly surprised as the intelligentsia was the focus of my graduate thesis.

The Dream Life of Sukhanov by Olga Grushin (review) — For the flipside of Soviet history, this is definitely the book to check out if you’re studying the decline of the Soviet Union leading to its collapse. The author does such a wonderful job in portraying the effects of Soviet policy on society, the resulting stagnation, the ideas of art and thought floating around underneath the veneer in the latter 20th century, and the status of the apparatchik. I cannot recommend this book enough.

If you’re studying World War One, read…

A Very Long Engagement by Sebastien Japrisot (review) — It’s a mystery, it’s a love story…It also sheds a very frank look at the politics during the First World War in France and the way the troops were treated at the front, as well as the government’s attitude towards particular practices during the war immediately afterwards. Again, beautifully written, highly recommended!

Birds Without Wings by Louis de Bernieres (review) — Not directly set during World War One per se but alongside the events of the war. This book is set in Turkey during the dying days of the Ottoman Empire, and it does such an amazing job in portraying the complications of nationalism and national idependence on communities that have lived together for centuries. It’s both an eye-opener and absolutely heartbreaking and very good to read if you’re studying the collapse of the Ottoman Empire.

If you’re studying the Spanish Civil War, read…

Nada by Carmen Laforet (review) — I remember pushing this book like crazy a few years ago, it’s one of my favourites hands down not because it was stunningly written but it also gives such a glimpse of life in Barcelona shortly after the Spanish Civil War and the way that society and social interaction was greatly affected by the events of the war. Very atmospheric too, you can feel the stifling tension all the way through.

If you’re studying World War Two, read…

Suite Francaise by Irene Nemirovsky (review) — A very informative book in giving readers a first-hand glimpse of what it was like to live under Nazi Occupation in France from the everyday perspective. Stunningly written, heartbreaking to read.

The Invisible Bridge by Julie Orringer (review) — There are so many books out there set during World War Two set in France, Germany, the UK, the big players, that one can forget at times that smaller countries were also affected by the war. Whilst this book is set for a good chunk in France, it does also reveal a lot of how Hungary was affected during the war, which was an eye-opener.

And those are the books I’d recommend to complement history lessons! What books would you recommend for the above categories? I’d love to hear from you! 🙂

Top Ten Tuesdays

Posted 26 July, 2016 by Lianne in Meme / 13 Comments

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created here at The Broke and the Bookish. This meme was created because we are particularly fond of lists here at The Broke and the Bookish. We’d love to share our lists with other bookish folks and would LOVE to see your top ten lists!

This week’s topic: Ten Books Have Made Me Want To Do or Learn About After Reading Them

Oooh, great topic! I loooooove books that leave me wanting to learn more about a topic or a person 🙂

In no particular order:

  1. The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon (review) — This is the book that sparked my interest in Spanish history and literature and books set in Spain. It even inspired a trip to Spain a few years ago 😀
  2. Juliet by Ann Fortier (review) — This book left me curious about the city and layout of Siena, with its different neighbourhoods marked by the different families that controlled the area. I had read the book when I was in Italy but unfortunately could not schedule a day trip to the city to see the carved statues for myself.
  3. The Invisible Bridge by Julie Orringer (review) — We all know the major countries involved in World War Two and the impact that the war had on these countries but then there comes a book like this that reminds me that I still don’t know how smaller countries were affected, in this case Hungary.
  4. I Always Loved You by Robin Oliveira (review) — This book left me looking up Degas’ artwork and examining them more closely 🙂
  5. Madame Picasso by Anne Girard (review to be posted later this week) — I love books like this that focuses on the women in these artists’ lives because I learn so much more about these artists in the process and what they were like in life.
  6. Rodin’s Lover by Heather Webb (review) — I can’t remember if it was this book or another book, but it left me sketching a bit again.
  7. The Notebooks of Malte Laurids Brigge by Rainer Maria Rilke (review to be posted in October) — This stunning book left me writing a bit of poetry afterwards! (I was also going through a bit of writer’s block, so the poetry helped) It also reminded me that I have yet to read some of his poetry! Need to rectify that one of these days.
  8. The Cathedral of the Sea by Ildefonsos Falcones — After I read this book I looked up images of the Santa Maria del Mar in Barcelona and kicking myself for not knowing about it when we were there as to stop by and check it out (I had picked up the book in the train station as we were leaving Barcelona -_-;)
  9. Burial Rites by Hannah Kent (review) — Well this book solidified my desire to go to Iceland someday; there was something about the landscape that permeated through the pages here…Oh, it also had me looking up the actual case of Agnes Magnusdottir.
  10. The Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien (review #1, #2, #3) — LOTR was definitely one of those books that, like The Shadow of the Wind, opened up new avenues for me, not only in reading more fantasy but also checking out books that influenced Tolkien, such as The Kalevala (review) 🙂

And that’s my list for this week! I’m sure there are plenty of other books that left me seeking out more about a topic or wanting to try or do something or visit a place, but this is just some of those books. What books prompted you to read up more on a topic or visit/try/do something? Let me know, I’d love to read your list! 🙂