I am a disgrace to the reading community. I’ve read maybe 200 books in my very short 23 years, not including the “Spot Run” and “Cat Takes a Bath” books I read as a child. My library is a disgrace. I have two, only TWO, book cases filled with books. What kind of reader/writer am I? A terrible excuse for one. My library is lacking so many books… I will never catch up.
I read a lot for my classes, but I don’t pay that much attention and half the time I skim these books.
I blame my parents. Yes, I said it. I blame you Mom and Dad! You didn’t give me books! Well, that’s not true. If I asked for a book I usually got it. But they didn’t really encourage books. I can’t really blame them, English is their second language. My dad was never a big reader, he’s a worker bee and I get that from him (my drive to have two jobs I can attribute to him). My mom was a reader as a child, but she read Czech books. My love for writing was my doing, I loved making up stories. That I can give partial credit to my childhood best friend (who will be known as Niche). Niche could never fall asleep during sleepovers and she would always give me heck for falling asleep first, so I would lay on the floor or next to her in bed and tell her stories until she (or in some cases I) fell asleep.
But my love of literature and books I must blame on my brother’s friends. As I was slowly starting my high school honours English classes all his friends (but not him) were starting their Majors in English at University. They talked about books and suggested books for me and I fell in love. Also, I have to attribute some of my love of literature to my 10th grade English honours teacher and my 11th and 12th grade English honours and Literature teacher. These men encouraged me, they were fun and serious at the same time. They didn’t take shit from the other teachers, they were sarcastic and fun and I felt so in touch with these men. In 12th grade I was reading One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez, of course half of the content was lost on me but I still found it beautiful. My teacher saw this on my desk and we began to talk about it. I felt like an equal to a man I looked up to. I felt intelligent and I felt respected. I felt like comfortable and in my element.
But I screwed this all up by not reading enough!
I made a list this morning, a list of all the books I need for my library or want for my library. Off the top of my head this is what I came up with:
José Saramago: Baltasar and Blimunda, The Gospel According to Jesus Christ, The Double, The Elephant’s Journey, Cain, The Stone Raft, Journey to Portugal, The History of the Siege of Lisbon
Margaret Atwood: Surfacing, Life Before Man, Bodily Harm, Cat’s Eye, The Robber Bride, The Penelopiad, MaddAddam (not yet released)
Charles Dickens: The Life and Adventures of Nicholas Nickleby, The Adventures of Oliver Twist, A Christmas Carol, David Copperfield, A Tale of Two Cites, Great Expectations
Douglas Adams: The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, The Restaurant at the End of the Universe, Life, the Universe and Everything, So Long, and Thanks for All the Fish, Mostly Harmless, And Another Thing…
Tom Robbins: Jitterbug Perfume, Skinny Legs and All, Even Cowgirls Get the Blues, Another Roadside Attraction, Half Asleep in Frog Pajamas
Cassandra Clare: City of Ashes, City of Class, City of Fallen Angels, City of Lost Souls, City of Heavenly Fire (not yet released).
Angela Carter: Wise Children, Nights at the Circus, The Passion of New Eve
Gabriel Garcia Marquez: In Evil Hour, The General in His Labyrinth
James Joyce: A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man, Ulysses
Milan Kundera: The Book of Laughter and Forgetting, The Unbearable Lightness of Being
S.E. Hinton: The Outsiders
Umbeito Eco: The Name of the Rose
Susanna Clarke: Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norwell
Laini Taylor: Days of Blood and Starlight
And this is just what I thought of in the span of a half hour! If there’s anything that anyone thinks I should add or that I have to read then please tell me! I clearly have my work cut out for me, but the more the merrier. Plus if anyone wants to get me a present for any possible situation (birthday, Christmas, Name’s Day, etc) just pick one from the list. I recently finished The Great Gatsby, but there will be no review until I watch the new movie. I want to compare it. I’ve also got my judgemental cap ready for when I see it.
I just started All the Names by José Saramago and I’m only on page 33 but I already have quotes stashed from it’s pages. This is always a great sign.
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