Let’s Talk Embroideries

No wait. It is not what you think it is.

Embroideries need patience. In fact, tonnes and tonnes of it. And I don’t have that reserve of patience in me. What I am talking about is the book of the same name by Marjane Satrapi.

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Image Source: Amazon.com and I hold no rights to it.

It is not a book per se, but a graphic novel and a fine one at that. A quick read, you can actually finish this brilliant piece at one go. On a flight, on a long drive or on a day when you want to take a break from everything and need a change. It is rib-tickling and there are moments that would make you laugh out loud. Really LOUD.

I am afraid of giving away spoilers and hence, I steer clear of penning down more words and not including any quote. You have to enjoy it one word at a time. All I can say is that the book is a masterpiece and this is only the first of her many books that I have picked up to read.

I have targeted her book Persepolis next as a friend highly recommends the same to me.

Have you read Embroideries? What do you like about the book/graphic novel?

 

 

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Beginner’s Luck: 7 Books To Have In Your Collection When You Start Reading

Look what I found! 😀

Scribbling Owlet

Image Source: Flickr Image Source: Flickr

Reading is a hobby that gives joy second to none. More often than not, beginner level readers are clueless as to how they can build up their book collection or which books should they start reading first. Here is a new series in my blog – Beginner’s Luck and I will start with a list of 7 books that every beginner should have in their collection.

  1. Classic: There are so many classics out there that you will surely be spoilt for choices. However, in my opinion, you can settle for quick classics such as – The Animal Farm or The Old Man and The Sea.
  2. Chicken Soup For Soul: I have not read any of the books in this series. But if you want to get started with non-fiction, this is the best series that you can try. There are many variants of the book such as…

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I Never Read Non-Fiction, Almost…

Non-fiction is the dark sheep of my reading expeditions. Biographies, autobiographies, memoirs, self-help books etc. are never picked up by me from the shelves, apart from gifting purposes.

Not that I never tried reading them, or haven’t ever read them. But beyond a few pages, I start yawning and can’t seem to focus. My heart and soul wanders away and I long to pick up a work of fiction as soon as possible.

Such is my condition.

Till date, the only non-fiction works that I read (and remember) are :

  • You Can Win by Shiv Khera
  • Who Moved My Cheese
  • The Diary Of Anne Frank (Read it numerous time)
  • Timepass by Protima Bedi
  • Letters from a father to a daughter
  • Ogilvy on Advertising

And I guess that’s all.

I am still figuring out the WHY of non-fiction aversion. And I have concluded that it is because of the fact –

  • If I can learn it from a story, why read someone else’s account?
  • Self-help never motivates me and I find it to be a bit “preachy”. I don’t like being “preached”.
  • I feel lost. Every single time I pick up a non-fiction work. Sometimes, I feel I am losing my identity and questioning everything when I read excerpts. Whereas, I am overall a very optimistic person who never compares and contrasts her life with others. So, no.
  • I can’t visualise anything when I read a work of non-fiction! I can’t imagine a scenario where person X and person Y meet at an office and then person Y becomes the bigshot and blah. No. Not happening. Give me names! Give me imaginary setups please.

Having said that, I believe that I have learnt more from Harry Potter or The Sisterhood of The Traveling Pants than from a Men are from Mars. I learn more from Jodi Picoult and Jhumpa Lahiri than the who’s who of non-fiction world.

I know I am biased, but this is how I function. Hopefully, I do aim to read more non-fiction in the coming days (one book is already shortlisted), but I am not promising that I won’t wander off! 😉

What about your equation with non-fiction works? Suggestions are most welcome.

 

 

Repost: “Ugly” by Warsan Shire — johncoyote

Originally posted on Revolt. She Said. Revolt Again.: UGLY Your daughter is ugly. She knows loss intimately, carries whole cities in her belly. As a child, relatives wouldn’t hold her. She was splintered wood and sea water. They said she reminded them of the war. On her fifteenth birthday you taught her how to tie…

via “Ugly” by Warsan Shire — johncoyote

Giveaway on Goodreads: Myth by Erin Ritch

Hello folks!

I have news. Erin Ritch, the author of Myth is hosting a giveaway on Goodreads. If you are interested, then head straight to Goodreads and enter the giveaway! You can always get lucky! 🙂

The Giveaway ends on October 12th, so hurry up!!!!! And don’t forget to tell me if you win! 😉

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Myth by Erin Ritch

Myth

by Erin Ritch

Giveaway ends October 12, 2016.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter Giveaway

Book Review: The Vigil and Other Stories

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There are stories that you read once and forget.

There are stories, which remain with you always.

And then, there are stories that you never expect to turn out that great, but they ooze a certain kind of warmth and never leave you.

This is what I learnt from many Sudha Murthy stories. I am glad to add one more name to the list today and that is of Gita Reddy, author of The Vigil and Other Stories.

To be honest, I sometimes DO judge a book by its cover. Mainly because I belong to the IT industry and often, I have to work in close quarter with design. So, when I received the copy of the book, I was a bit skeptical about how it will turn out to be, what sort of stories will it contain, reviewing shall anyway be done but will I actually love the book and read it with acute interest?

As you might have guessed by now, I did love the book. The collection of mostly women-centric short stories, the book strikes a chord. It has been written in a simple language and keeps you hooked on every sentence, every page. Saying anything more will just spoil the book for you.

Read it at your own pace and make others read it too!

Click here to take a look at the book on Goodreads.

 

My Pick From The Most Beautiful Literary Quotes Of All Time.

Book readers and avid fans of literature are suckers for quotes. Some hold on to them forever, some, like me, tend to forget them as soon as they close the pages. Thanks to this blog, I will be able to preserve some of my most favorite quotes, which I have come across while reading or while stalking words on the internet. Take a look and tell me how many of them do you love as well!


“Whatever our souls are made of, his and mine are the same.” -Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë

“In our village, folks say God crumbles up the old moon into stars.” — One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich by Alexander Solzhenitsyn

“You forget what you want to remember, and you remember what you want to forget.” – The Road by  Cormac McCarthy

“I took a deep breath and listened to the old brag of my heart; I am, I am, I am.”
— The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath

“Nothing is so painful to the human mind as a great and sudden change.” – Frankenstein by Mary Shelly

“The pieces I am, she gather them and gave them back to me in all the right order.”
— Beloved by Toni Morrison

“Sometimes we get sad about things and we don’t like to tell other people that we are sad about them. We like to keep it a secret. Or sometimes, we are sad but we really don’t know why we are sad, so we say we aren’t sad but we really are.” The Curious Incident of The Dog in The Night time by Michael Haddon

“And now that you don’t have to be perfect, you can be good.”
— East of Eden by John Steinbeck

“One must be careful of books, and what is inside them, for words have the power to change us.”
The Infernal Devices by Cassandra Clare

“Call me Ishmael.” – Moby Dick by Herman Melville (not a quote per se, but it is magnetic)

“Neighbours bring food with death and flowers with sickness and little things in between. Boo was our neighbour. He gave us two soap dolls, a broken watch and chain, a pair of good luck pennies, and our lives.”To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee

 

 

The Crappiest Year In A Row

This is the crappiest year of my life. The second one in a row, and I can’t wait for it to end.

Every month of this year, I have had one sorrow-filled news. Every other month, things went awry. Every two months, I was sick to my bones. And every quarter, I was so busy, that I neglected the things I love the most – books and blogging.

As this crappy year comes to a close in another 3 months or so, I wish to have a better, if not worse year ahead. Hopefully, I will devote more time to this blog and catch up on my reading.

There are already a number of books on their way and I want to utilize my upcoming vacation for the same.

Cheers to that!

The Umpteenth Harry Potter and The Cursed Child Review (No-Spoilers)

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The title is a spoiler. But the post is not.

I am going to review Harry Potter and The Cursed Child and it is the gazillionth review that is going to be written about the book ever since the release of the play/book.

To begin with, I didn’t have much expectations from the book. I mean, the story ended with book 7 and so, what could possibly be in a play that claimed to reveal what we already know about Mr. Potter Junior and his universe?

Also, I never read those fan-fictions as I wanted to preserve my memories. Of reading the novels under the sheet with a torch hours past the bedtime, of rushing to the library and nearest stores to get a copy, of being the first one to read it and later, brag about it in the friend circle…and I digress.

Let me put in points what are my thoughts on the book/play.

The bad

  1. Harry Potter and the Cursed Child begins in a familiar yet unfamiliar universe, where the original trio are middle-aged. Nope. I couldn’t imagine them being middle-aged and all “parenty”. They were still teenagers for me.
  2. It was in a play format and very very difficult to read. Acts/Scenes…not my cup of coffee to be honest. Nope.
  3. At one point, the plot was very confusing. I didn’t know what was happening.
  4. Some of the plot twists, twisted my stomach because I couldn’t make myself to accept them. Nada. Scarred for life. Childhood ruined forever. Logic went for a toss.
  5. It was much ado about nothing really. But like I said, I didn’t have any expectations, so there.
  6. Favourite characters missing.
  7. Too much emo-moments happening. No thrills really.

The good

  1. It still had the essence of the original books to a certain point. Loved the sorting ceremony.
  2. Return of favourite characters.
  3. The entire idea of traveling back and forth in time.
  4. Scorpius ❤
  5. Draco ❤ ❤

That’ll be all.

I wouldn’t give a thumbs down to the book, but it didn’t add to the legacy of Harry Potter. It can fall in the category of additional books like Fantastic Beasts and Where To Find Them, but not as the 8th installment of the series.

Would I recommend it? If you are a Potter fan, hell yes!!!

Book Review: When Darkness Falls and Other Stories – Ruskin Bond

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When Darkness Falls and Other Stories is my first ever Ruskin Bond book.

Although I have grown reading his stories as a part of my English curriculum, I don’t exactly remember what took me so long to pick up the book for my shelf. Needless to say, it was the right decision.

A collection of stories based in the hills, the book seems to be semi-autobiographical in nature (Mr. Bond grew up in the hills). I love the hills too, more than beaches (beaches be blah, no offence). And when I was reading the book, it was about 40 degrees C in my city. So, it gave me a respite, an escape from the scorching sun. Although virtually. But who’s complaining?

A short book, it is not a short read. You have to read each word, turn each page slowly so that you can absorb everything, including the witty lines, the characters and even the smell of conical trees that grow in abundance in the hills.

Once you read the book (or any other Ruskin Bond book for that matter), you’ll know why reading a Ruskin Bond book is something you’d want your kids to do before they grow up. The book belongs to another era and ‘gen-tech’ may not exactly be able to relate to it. But it is a book that should definitely be on their bookshelves.

As opposed to the name though, there is nothing dark about the book. It simply contains stories, anecdotal in nature, which will never lose their charm.

It shouldn’t take you long to grab a copy. 🙂

The Reading Update – July-August

  1. Maus 2 – Arthur Spiegelman
  2. House Rules – Jodi Picoult
  3. When Darkness Falls and Other Stories – Ruskin Bond
  4. The Room on the Roof – Ruskin Bond
  5. Harry Potter and The Cursed Child

Hello there!

We meet again. The current month and the previous are very hectic for me. I barely get time to sleep, let alone blog. This is because I am learning a new language! Nevertheless, I managed to squeeze some time for the most awaited book of the year – the 8th installment in the HP series.

Stay tuned for upcoming posts! Cheers.

 

 

The Reading Update – June

  1. Maus 2 – Arthur Spiegelman
  2. House Rules – Jodi Picoult
  3. The Jungle Book – Rudyard Kipling
  4. When Darkness Falls and Other Stories – Ruskin Bond
  5. Malgudi – R.K.Narayan
  6. House of Cards – Sudha Murty
  7. The Color of our Sky – Amita Trasi
  8. Toba Tek Singh – Sadat Hasan Manto
  9. The Room on the Roof – Ruskin Bond
  10. The one and only Ivan – Katherine Applegate
  11. Little Women – Louisa May Alcott

 

Now that I am confident and got my reading mojo back, how about taking up more books 🙂 Most of these are Indian classics, which I ought to have read during my school days. But better late than never.

The books in bold have less pages and consist of short stories. But they will need time as the stories are rich and every word counts. No skimming there!

Let me know what you think of the list. 🙂 Au revoir!

How To Lose Friends By Reading Books!!

Call this insane. But I have seen this happen with my own two eyes. You can lose friends by reading books. Not that you SHOULD. But I digress. Here is how you tend to lose friends as you read books:

  • Books on your to-be-read list outnumber the friends you currently have in your life.
  • You’d rather curl up in your bed or couch with a comforter, book, torch and coffee/tea than go out with friends on a weekend.
  • When someone attempts to snap you out of your reading phase, you mentally cut them off, even if its only for that very instant.
  • You love the smell of books – old and new, more than you love the smell of people!
  • You don’t dream of matching curtains and bed covers. You dream of a room full of books and reading nooks.
  • You gravitate towards people who are as obsessed with books as you are.
  • You often judge people based on your current read or a book you read in the recent past. This doesn’t go down well with them I suppose!
  • Nobody can understand bookspeak.
  • Books are your BAE. Period.

Currently Reading

  1. Maus 2 – Arthur Spiegelman
  2. House Rules – Jodi Picoult
  3. The Jungle Book – Rudyard Kipling

These are on my reading list. To be honest, the reading list is long. But I have just started again, living my life through books. So here you go.

What are you reading?

9 Valuable Tips For Turning A Non-Reader Into A Reader

A classmate of mine was a non-reader. For a long, long time, he had aversion to the world of words. One day, he discovered the joy of reading and there was no looking back for him. He was in his mid-twenties when he started.

Takeaways?

A. It is never too late to begin reading.

B. With the right books, anyone can become a reader.

So, how do you make the transition? How do you go to the other side of the fence and have all the green grass? Maybe, these points will help you.

  1. Physical book vs Ebook. And the debate rages on. I would suggest you to opt for the former. But if you are more comfortable reading on a screen, invest in an Ebook reader such as Kindle, for distraction-free reading. But if your will-power is strong, then you can always read on a tab or any other device.
  2. Become a member of a local library. This way, you can get access to each and every genre of book without spending all your life’s savings!
  3. Or read online. Archive.org, Project Gutenberg and a number of other websites allow you to read books or sample chapters online for free. Go for them!
  4. Choose a reading nook. Where no one can come between you and your book. Just saying! 😀 Any place where you can comfortably sit and read at a stretch will do.
  5. Dedicate a time of the day for reading. Go for a digital detox and  indulge in reading. Even if it is for fifteen to twenty minutes, dedicate yourself for reading completely. Over the time, you can always increase the duration.
  6. Choose a book by its cover. If dull and drab book covers don’t make you feel interested in reading, switch to books with a lovely cover design. Or maybe, you can switch to a different edition of the same book with a different cover design. Hey! Cover designers get paid for this! 😉
  7. Read books based on movies. This will get you interested, somewhat. Goodreads has a list and so does Listchallenges. Take your pick.
  8. Read fanfics. Reading fanfics is a fan-tastic exercise. It gives you a fresh perspective and answers a number of ‘what-ifs’ you always had in mind. Best part is, you can read them online for free!
  9. Read books that have lesser number of pages. When you complete a book, you get a sense of achievement. So, why not begin with books that can be completed easily?  Here are some lists:

Want to add to the list? Be my guest.

The Captain Didn’t Abandon The Ship

Yes. I know. I know.

It has been ages and this blog is gathering dust and cobwebs and all that.

But trust me, I was busier than the busiest. Still am.

The Captain didn’t abandon ship though.

Stay tuned for a revamped site with a new twist.

That’s all folks.

🙂

 

 

Utterly Nonsensical Reasons Why I Refuse To Read Some Books After Page 1

#TBT

Scribbling Owlet

Dear Writers Of Books I Wanted To Read But Couldn’t,

I am a reader. I want to be an voracious reader once more and I do have the potential in my bones you know. But I can’t. I can’t just go beyond page #1 even though I try hard to !!!! I will not blame you because I do understand. This is why, it is I who is on the wrong side of things. The reasons are nonsensical.

The names seem fake: Some authors (I won’t reveal) love naming their characters as if they are going to name their future brood of kids. Exotic names. Really really exotic names. Now it can be understood that some names do suit the character and the setting. But puhleeeseee….sometimes they just stick out like a purple tongue. Okay, if the name is short and fairly simple, I can still proceed a bit. But…

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