Since I’ve started blogging again I’ve posted two book reviews (including this one) that are part of my attempt to read through the 1000 Novels Everyone Must Read list from UK newspaper The Guardian. It’s obviously going to be a life-long endeavor, and probably one I may never complete, but it helps me focus my reading on classics from literature that I have overlooked thus far.
I had never ready one of Gabriel García Márquez’ novels, and two of them are included in The Guardian’s list – One Hundred Years Of Solitude and Love In The Time Of Cholera. When I went home to Milan over Christmas, I was looking for classics that were originally written in French or Spanish that I could pick up to read in Italian translation. Though I can read and speak French and Spanish, since I’m 100% fluent in Italian, I read much more quickly in Italian. I find that language in books originally written in French or Spanish are done more justice through an Italian translation than an English one. There’s just many fewer adaptations that need to be made due to how much closer Italian is to the other romance languages.
It turns out that this particular classic – Love In The Time Of Cholera – is not one that really resonated with me. It was beautifully written and felt genuinely ‘classic’ and like it had definitely earned its place on the list of 1000 novels, but ultimately I couldn’t get into the characters or the story enough to consider it a favorite. To find out why, keep reading!
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When I first learned about Sapiens: A Brief History Of Humankind, I knew that I had to get my hands on it immediately. It’s exactly the kind of nonfiction I love the most – with sweeping swaths of history summarized based on overarching trends, while still including enough details to teach me something I didn’t know. I could tell that Homo Deus, on the other hand, would be a departure from my usual nonfiction fare. It’s almost more of a manifesto than the hypothetical set of musings on the future that the author insists it to be.
The two books are clearly portrayed as a set, based on their titles and matching cover styles, but if you loved Sapiens, you’re not at all guaranteed to also enjoy Homo Deus. I’m not surprised to say that though Sapiens has made it up there in the Top 20 or so of my favorite nonfiction titles, Homo Deus was interesting but much less to my taste. To find out why, read my reviews below!
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It’s early morning this Friday as I write this post, and as soon as I’m finished, I’ll be heading out to the beach for a full day of solo reading in my trusty beach tent. I’m really lucky to have gotten today off work so that I can get a jumpstart on getting through most of Homo Deus by Yuval Noah Harari (which I will be reviewing on Monday) and also starting Into The Water by Paula Hawkins for my May 2017 Book Of The Month delivery. I’m bringing some snacks and planning on at least 5 hours of uninterrupted beach and reading time. Ready. Set. Go.
For those of us still on the weekly grind this Friday, you may find some solace and entertainment in this week’s links. Only one more day till the weekend!
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What I really love about participating in book clubs is that it can open you up to reading books you may have never considered otherwise. I’m part of a book club here in LA that is made up of alumnae of my college (Wellesley) and includes women of all generations who have a real passion for reading. Our conversations are always really interesting and the participants often bring unexpected book recommendations to the table.
Death Of A Nationalist is a novel I may never have even found out about without my Wellesley book club. Despite it’s 508 reviews and 4 star score on Goodreads, I probably normally would have passed over this first installment in a 4-part crime-mystery series set in Spain leading up to and during World War II. Though I wouldn’t rate this as my favorite book of all time, it turned out to be a really enjoyable read. Find out why below!
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Book Of The Month is a subscription service that sends you one hardcover book per month out of five selections for a low monthly subscription fee. You can add 2 more titles to your monthly delivery for $9.99 each, and the price overall is very cheap for full-size hardcovers.
Book Of The Month is not paying me to promote their service. I just love it so much that I’ve turned my monthly deliveries into a feature on my blog 🙂 I do encourage you to try it though, because if you like hardcovers it’s a great deal.
You can use my referral link to sign up if you’re interested in trying it. You’ll get your first three months for just $9.99 each plus a cute tote. And I’ll get a free book when you join. Win, win!
I’m starting to work up some speed in catching up with my Book Of The Month reading and I hope to post reviews of a new month every 2 weeks, so I should be back on schedule by September. Fingers crossed!
When it comes to my April 2017 Book Of The Month selections, I ended up with 3 winners. American War by Omar El Akkad was amazing, Startup by Doree Shafrir was highly entertaining and The Oregon Trail by Rinker Buck was very interesting if a tad dense in parts. Read my full reviews below!
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I’m going to try to start posting a Links I Loved This Week post every Friday again as well as keeping up with actual review/recommendation posts. Wish me luck! 🙂 You’ll see I’ve edited the format of the post slightly to provide more structure, so that I hope it’ll be a bit quicker for me to put these posts together going forward, while still keeping them interesting.
I haven’t slowed down on the blogging this week! Go me! My reading has been pretty consistent as well. I should be done with the last of my April 2017 Book Of The Month picks by the end of this week as well as a book I am reading for my Wellesley book club in LA called Death Of A Nationalist by Rebecca Pawel. It’s a historical fiction/crime thriller and not exactly the kind of book I would usually pick for myself, but it’s well written and has been quite enjoyable so far. It’s the first in a 3 part series, so who knows, I may have to read the other ones.
Without further ado, here are this week’s links!
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