I've just added another page to this blog site.
THE READING ROOM!!!
Since 1991, I have kept a record of all the books I have read. I've decided to share this list with all the world. As time permits, I'll be adding more information to this page.
I'll be listing the following tidbits:
1. Book Name
2. Author Name
3. Number of Pages
There will also be a rating system by way of "G's".
G: Don’t Bother
To see this new page, just click HERE. (It is a work in progress.)
Reading is the most empowering practice I have ever taken on. In high school, it is the very thing that constantly nourished my spirit. I was a bit of a loner in school and lived on a small island in the middle of the South Pacific ocean. Reading books informed me and gave me a much larger perspective of the world beyond my little island paradise and limited human interaction.
To this day, I champion all of the benefits that come with reading books and encourage any and all of my friends to read!!
Here are five of my all-time favorite books. In my life, these books changed me in some vital and powerful way. I am who I am now due to the grace and beauty found in the pages of these books:
[caption id="attachment_872" align="aligncenter" width="290" caption="The Pearl by John Steinbeck"][/caption]
This book was actually a reading assignment for my English class. Being that I lived on an island with a strong native culture, I related to this book's story immediately. Reading this book was one of the first times I can remember a book making me feel so impossibly sad and heartbroken. It tells a simple fable of a man and a family who find and own a pearl. It is a colossal tale in the most understated and delicate of ways. This book is a masterpiece.
[caption id="attachment_874" align="aligncenter" width="235" caption="Les Miserable by Victor Hugo"][/caption]
Much has been said about this story both in its written and musical/stage form. There is a reason that numerous film versions of it have been made. It is a compelling narrative of the human struggle. At times gut-wrenching, poignant, and all too tender, Jean's unbreakable connection to Cossette in this story is a thing of beauty. I love this book.
[caption id="attachment_875" align="aligncenter" width="140" caption="The God In Flight by Laura Argiri"][/caption]
This is probably the most obscure of my all-time favorite books, but it is no less amazing. As a debut novel, it is a formidable force of literature. Set in the 1800's at Yale University, it tells the story of two unlikely lovers--a brilliant young student and his volatile male Greek art professor. Yes, that's right. This is a story about two men who fall in love and the tide of struggles that befall them. While this premise might be enough to turn off most readers, I have to say that in addition to being such a unique period piece of a story, it is remarkably well written. I don't think I'd be out of line if I said that, in the greatest likelihood, even the Bronte sisters and Jane Austen herself would praise this book. It took Argiri 20 years to write this book and is a testament to her skill and power as a writer.
[caption id="attachment_876" align="aligncenter" width="182" caption="Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte"][/caption]
Speaking of the Bronte sisters, I have a soft spot in my heart for Charlotte Bronte simply because of her timeless classic "Jane Eyre". This is essentially the story of an orphan who finds her own way through a difficult set of circumstances. She becomes self-empowered, and she finds love in a man who is truly worthy of her. Some people have Superman, while others have Frodo, or heck, even Buffy, for that matter. As a teenager, I had Jane Eyre. She was as good of a hero for me as any.
It was my Junior year of high school. My pre-calculus teacher was sitting next to me at our basketball court. Maybe he could tell that I was pretending to be interested in the game that was going on because he asked me if I have ever read this book. He said that he thought I would really appreciate it. We only ever talked about math, and I thought it was strange that he would mention this book to me. A couple of weeks later, I managed to find a copy of it, and I read it. It was unlike any book I had ever read before. Certainly not terribly formal but actually quite intimate in its own way. I liked it and found myself thinking about it often. It somehow put to words the sense of listlessness and confinement that I felt back in those days. I didn't have my own words for how I was feeling at the time, but this book was eloquent enough. In its few pages, it speaks volumes of truth.
Feel free to visit my new Reading Room any time. First off, I have the arduous task of updating it all the way through to this year, and then, I will keep adding to the list as I read more books.
Please leave a comment on the Reading Room page if you can and share your thoughts. I welcome them all.
More to come.
By all means, read something. You might discover something you never thought you would.
During the weekend before last, my nephew Bubba had a flag football game (which his team won, of course). I joined the family out in a park in Mt. Juliet for the festivities. I was sporting my now infamous hot-red sweatpants after having gone to the gym that morning. I got to be out in the sun a little (which I never do), knit, and take some fun photos.
Here is evidence of the fun that ensued . . .
[caption id="attachment_911" align="aligncenter" width="400" caption="Chillin' with my nephew Nacho."][/caption]
[caption id="attachment_914" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Yeah, I know."][/caption] [caption id="attachment_917" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Maybe he found a bug?"][/caption]
[caption id="" align="alignright" width="156" caption="But I don't wanna be a pirate!"][/caption]
One of my goals with my projects is to spend less time in front of the television. This is much harder than it seems. That magical box calls to me like the Sirens in the Odyssey. It wouldn't so bad if I was watching shows like NOVA, the News, Documentaries, PBS, and really all the other boring stuff. Unfortunately, I watch TV to actually be entertained so it's mostly brain mushing, mindless (yet hilarious) television. Apparently, being able to reference Seinfeld episodes in any situation isn't very helpful during intelligent conversations, though, so I'm trying to cut back.
The only thing that I can do to quiet the call is to figure out other things to fill my time. Preferably productive things that will actually better me as a human being (so practicing for my Minute to Win It audition is out). One of those productive things I'm hoping to trade TV in for is reading. Here's my challenge to myself, and to you:
Read 2 books every month: one fiction, one non-fiction.
Here are the books I already have on my list to start working my way through: