books i read because of recommendations

Do you have fellow book lovers whom you call when you need book recommendations? I asked because The Artsy Reader’s Top Ten Tuesday this week is Books I Read Because Someone Recommended Them to Me .

My answer to the question above is yes, I do have a handful! And here are the books they recommended!

Great Expectations

Great Expectations by Charles Dickens – recommended by the husband as he said this is one of the rare classics he actually liked.

The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo

The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid – recommended by bonu, my sister in law who is a fellow book lover!

Bread, Cement, Cactus: A Memoir of Belonging and Dislocation by Annie Zaidi

The Housekeeper and the Professor by Yōko OgawaStephen Snyder (Translator)

On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous by Ocean Vuong

These books were part of a “Nameless Reading Group” I was a part of since April, founded by the brilliant writer that is Anmol. It was my first time joining a reading group and I definitely discovered new genres and writers because of them.

My Talisman: The Poetry and Life of Alexander Pushkin

My Talisman: The Poetry and Life of Alexander Pushkin by Julian Henry Lowenfeld – suggested by my Rodnoy, my brother in pen, who I have lost early this year. He introduced me to Pushkin, Baudelaire, Leonard Cohen, and more.

The Best of Ruskin Bond by Ruskin Bond

Sesher Kobita, The Last Poem by Rabindranath Tagore

Die Trying (Jack Reacher, #2) by Lee Child

Calling Sehmat by Harinder Sikka

Capping this list with four more recommendations from the husband. 🙂 Because of him, I have discovered the wisdom and eloquence of Ruskin Bond and Rabindranath Tagore.

Have you read any of these books? What are the books you read because of recommendations? Did you enjoy them? Share your thoughts and your TTT below!

10.20.2020
©2020 Rosemawrites@A Reading Writer. All Rights Reserved.
Photos via The Artsy Reader and Goodreads
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

10 books with long titles

The Artsy Reader’s Top Ten Tuesday ‘s theme for the week is about October 13: Super Long Book Titles. I looked back at the books I’ve read to see if I have some on my lists. Out of the over 300 titles I was able to read, a huge 90% are titled with few words, some just one or even just two.

So I am not sure if the below novels really do have “Super Long” titles, but these are the ones which I think would fit the prompt best. 🙂 As a fan of quotes, I’ll do a bonus sharing here, too! Here we go:

1. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon

“I want my name to mean me.”

2. Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage by Haruki Murakami

“The human heart is like a night bird. Silently waiting for something, and when the time comes, it flies straight toward it.”

3. The 100-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out the Window and Disappeared (The Hundred-Year-Old Man, #1) by Jonas Jonasson

“Revenge is like politics, one thing always leads to another until bad has become worse, and worse has become worst.”

4. My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell You She’s Sorry by Fredrik Backman

“Because not all monsters were monsters in the beginning. Some are monsters born of sorrow.”

5. I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings (Maya Angelou’s Autobiography, #1) by Maya Angelou

“There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you.”

6. Option B: Facing Adversity, Building Resilience, and Finding Joy by Sheryl SandbergAdam M. Grant

“Let me fall if I must fall. The one I become will catch me.”

7. David and Goliath: Underdogs, Misfits, and the Art of Battling Giants by Malcolm Gladwell

“Giants are not what we think they are. The same qualities that appear to give them strength are often the sources of great weakness.”

8. The Book of Joy: Lasting Happiness in a Changing World by Dalai Lama XIVDesmond TutuDouglas Carlton Abrams (Translator)

“Wherever you have friends that’s your country, and wherever you receive love, that’s your home.”

9. Finding Chika: A Little Girl, an Earthquake, and the Making of a Family by Mitch Albom

“The most precious thing you can give someone is your time, Chika, because you can never get it back. When you don’t think about getting it back, you’ve given it in love.”

10. My Talisman: The Poetry and Life of Alexander Pushkin by Julian Henry Lowenfeld

“But flaming youth in all it’s madness
Keeps nothing of its heart concealed:
It’s loves and hates, its joys and sadness,
Are babbled out and soon revealed.”

Have you read any of these books? Do you have a favorite novel with a super long title? Share your thoughts and TTT below!

10.13.2020
©2020 Rosemawrites@A Reading Writer. All Rights Reserved.
Photos via The Artsy Reader and Goodreads
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

top 10 book covers i love (with quotes!)

Are you guilty of judging the book by its cover? I have to admit sometimes I do that! I asked because the The Artsy Reader’s Top Ten Tuesday today is a Cover Freebie (choose your own topic, centered on book covers or cover art).

Instead of just sharing the 10 covers I adore the most, all of them I have read once or more, I also want to share today some verses from each book to give you a sneak peek of the world inside their lovely skins.

1. The Five People You Meet in Heaven by Mitch Albom

The Five People You Meet in Heaven

Life has to end. Love doesn’t.

2. Manuscript Found in Accra by Paulo Coelho

Manuscript Found in Accra

Only he who gives up is defeated. Everyone else is victorious.

3. The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion

The Rosie Project (Don Tillman, #1)

Our first relationship with a male is with our fathers. It affects how we relate to men forever.

4. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time

I think prime numbers are like life. They are very logical but you could never work out the rules, even if you spent all your time thinking about them.”

5. Leaving Time by Jodi Picoult

Leaving Time

I think grief is like a really ugly couch. It never goes away. You can decorate around it; you can slap a doily on top of it; you can push it to the corner of the room—but eventually, you learn to live with it.

6. The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold

The Lovely Bones

Because horror on Earth is real and it is every day. It is like a flower or like the sun; it cannot be contained.

7. The Magic Strings of Frankie Presto by Mitch Albom

The Magic Strings of Frankie Presto

“All humans are musical. Why else would the Lord give you a beating heart?”

8. All the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven

All the Bright Places

“The thing I realize is, that it’s not what you take, it’s what you leave.”

9. Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell

Eleanor & Park

Eleanor was right. She never looked nice. She looked like art, and art wasn’t supposed to look nice; it was supposed to make you feel something.

10. Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn

Gone Girl

My mother had always told her kids: if you’re about to do something, and you want to know if it’s a bad idea, imagine seeing it printed in the paper for all the world to see.

Share the book covers you love below and your TTT, too!

09.15.2020
©2020 Rosemawrites@A Reading Writer. All Rights Reserved.
Photos via The Artsy Reader and Goodreads
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

10 books for my younger self

It is Tuesday and it is the time of the week again — The Artsy Reader’s Top Ten Tuesday !

The topic for the 8th of September is: Books for My Younger Self (These could be books you wish you had read as a child, books younger you could have really learned something from, books that meshed with your hobbies/interests, books that could have helped you go through events/changes in your life, etc.).

This means it’s time to dig into my Goodreads again and find the reads which I think my younger-self could learn a lot from. Here we go…

Books 1-5: Reads which could have taught me a lot about poetry

Dream Work by Mary Oliver; Helium by Rudy Francisco; Anna Akhmatovaby Anna Akhmatova; And Still I Rise by Maya Angelou; The Captain’s Verses by Pablo Neruda 

As the name of the blog suggests, I am a reading writer. I used to read for leisure, and write professionally at my work. Come 2015, after a virtual poetry workshop here on WordPress, I have rekindled my love for writing poems.

Since then there was no turning back. After two poetry collections which can be found here: https://areadingwritr.wordpress.com/portfolio/published-work/, I still have a lot to learn about the world of rhymes, rhythms, and lyrical verses. And the books above helped me with that, and it would have been lovely if my younger-self was exposed with these books as well.

Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind

Book 6: Lessons about human history

Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind by Yuval Noah Harari

When Breath Becomes Air

Book 7: Lessons about mortality, fairness of life, living every moment

When Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalanithi

Gitanjali

Book 8: Lessons about the world outside my country, life and love beyond what I knew when I was young, and the power of words when weaved right

Gitanjali by Rabindranath Tagore

Between Shades of Gray

Book 9: Lessons about the strength of a human heart, finding hope during one of the darkest chapters of history

Between Shades of Gray by Ruta Sepetys

All the Bright Places

Book 10: Lessons about the joy and pain of young love

All the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven

What are the books which you would suggest to your younger-self?

Share them below, along with your TTT, too!

09.08.2020
©2020 Rosemawrites@A Reading Writer. All Rights Reserved.
Photos via The Artsy Reader and Goodreads
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

10 books as Netflix shows or movies

So the title may make you think that I am a fan of novel-turned-movies or series but, a quick disclaimer, I am not.

When I was younger, I used to be a fan of Nicholas Sparks and I’ve watched all his novels’ adaptations and not a single one is better than the book version.

But The Artsy Reader’s Top Ten Tuesday this week is about “Books that Should be Adapted into Netflix Shows/Movies (submitted by Nushu @ Not A Prima Donna Girl)”. So let’s see how this will work. 🙂

 

1. Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind by Yuval Noah Harariwhat i love most about this book is how it was able to share a lot of hardcore, historical scientific facts in an engrossing way. Would be nice to see this, somehow, in a documentary format.

2. The Magic Strings of Frankie Presto by Mitch Albom – Albom turned into a full-blown novelist on this one and I think, if the screenplay will follow the storyline of this book, it would be an epic film.

3. A Woman Is No Man by Etaf Rum – this novel is so close to reality that you can feel the characters personally. If adapted nicely, this can be a powerful movie.

A Woman Is No Man

4. These Ghosts Are Family by Maisy Card – this debut novel follows multiple perspectives and stitched their connections eloquently, which makes it a candidate for a great immigrant visual story.

These Ghosts Are Family

5. The Tea Girl of Hummingbird Lane by Lisa See – such a touching which i think can touch and educate a lot of hearts if it becomes a motion picture.

The Tea Girl of Hummingbird Lane

6. The Family Upstairs by Lisa Jewell – there are scenes in this haunting book which i felt like i am watching a movie than reading a book, so there you go!

The Family Upstairs

7. My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell You She’s Sorry by Fredrik Backman – i am huge backman fan and with this novel’s right mix of magical and realistic aspects, i believe it will be appreciated by film fans, too. (i’ve read that rights for this has bough already, so it may well be on its way!)

My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell You She's Sorry

8. The Unwanted: A Memoir of Childhood by Kien Nguyen – memoirs have a different pull for my heart. this story is true and is cruel but is powerful.

The Unwanted: A Memoir of Childhood

9. When Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalanithi – speaking of memoir, this is one of the best ones i’ve read so far. reading its title clenches my heart, already. i’ll probably cry my eyes out if this becomes a movie.

When Breath Becomes Air

10. The Storyteller by Jodi Picoult – Picoult has a lot of movie adaptations on her sleeves and i believe this historical fiction of her should join that roster.

The Storyteller

That’s it! Share on the comments your own reads which you want to see in big (or small) screen!

08.11.2020
©2020 Rosemawrites@A Reading Writer. All Rights Reserved.
Photo via Goodreads and The Artsy Reader
Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

 

 

5 Quotes Why I Love A Man Called Ove

A Man Called Ove

A 59-year old widower. Grumpy. Trying and failing to kill himself, many times. Here’s an odd, funny, yet utterly moving story.

A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman

Rating: ❤❤❤❤

The first novel by the Swedish author Fredrik Backman, A Man Called Ove is a balance between heart wrenching and thought provoking lines as well as chuckle-inducing dialogues.

Backman has successfully created an old character who’s relatable to all ages. He eloquently presented Ove as the sad and odd man that he is, yet he successfully and ever so gently laid down his main character’s back story. His love. His grief. The reason why a man called Ove is the man called Ove.

Here are five (05) of my (many) favorite lines from this worth-reading novel.

  1. “He was a man of black and white. And she was color. All the color he had.”

  2. “One of the most painful moments in a person’s life probably comes with the insight that an age has been reached when there is more to look back on than ahead. And when time no longer lies ahead of one, other things have to be lived for. memories, perhaps.”
  3. “But sorrow is unreliable in that way. When people don’t share it there’s a good chance that it will drive them apart instead.”

  4. “All people at root are time optimists. We always think there’s enough time to do things with other people. Time to say things to them. And then something happens and then we stand there holding on to words like ‘if’.”
  5. “It is difficult to admit that one is wrong. Particularly when one has ben wrong for a very long time.”

  6. “Loving someone is like moving into a house,” Sonja used to say. “At first you fall in love with all the new things, amazed every morning that all this belongs to you, as if fearing that someone would suddenly come rushing in through the door to explain that a terrible mistake had been made, you weren’t actually supposed to live in a wonderful place like this. Then over the years the walls become weathered, the wood splinters here and there, and you start to love that house not so much because of all its perfection, but rather for its imperfections. You get to know all the nooks and crannies. How to avoid getting the key caught in the lock when it’s cold outside. Which of the floorboards flex slightly when one steps on them or exactly how to open the wardrobe doors without them creaking. These are the little secrets that make it your home.”

©2018 Rosemawrites@A Reading Writer. All Rights Reserved.
Photos via Goodreads and Unsplash

Book Quotes: Rain in the Mountains

Rain in the Mountains: Notes from the Himalayas

Rain in the Mountains: Notes from the Himalayas by Ruskin Bond

      Rating: ❤❤❤❤


As I remember that this blog is A Reading Writer, and as I want to fuel my reading pace again, I’ll start to post quotations and wise words I loved from my recent reads, starting with Rain in the Mountains by India’s very own Wordsworth in prose, Mr. Ruskin Bond.

This book holds a special place in my heart as it is a gift from my beloved. He gave it to me on our first trip in the majestic Himalayas. The first few pages were read during our 12-hour night-shift train ride going back to Kolkata.

It made me laugh, cry, grimace, scared, blush, think, laugh, and think some more. Here are the best words, the top five quotes that I would like to share with you:

  1. “A Quiet Mind Lord, give me a quiet mind, That I might listen; A gentle tone of voice, That I might comfort others; A sound and healthy body, That I might share In the joy of walking And leaping and running; And a good sense of direction So I might know just where I’m going!”
  2. Some people become an integral part of our lives; others are ships that pass in the night. Short stories, in fact.

    Image result for forest gif

  3. “When the earth gave birth to this tree, There came no sound: A green shoot thrust In silence from the ground. Our births don’t come so quiet— Most lives run riot— But the bud opens silently, And flower gives way to fruit. So must we search For the stillness within the tree, The silence within the root.”
  4. “I am still on my zigzag way, pursuing the diagonal between reason and heart.”

  5. “Little one, don’t be afraid of this big river. Be safe in these warm arms for ever. Grow tall, my child, be wise and strong. But do not take from any man his song. Little one, don’t be afraid of this dark night. Walk boldly as you see the truth and light. Love well, my child, laugh all day long, But do not take from any man his song.

©2018 Rosemawrites@A Reading Writer. All Rights Reserved.
Photo via Unsplash & Giphy.com

Book Review: When Breath Becomes Air

When Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalanithi
Rating: ❤❤❤❤

What is it about: At the age of thirty-six, on the verge of completing a decade’s worth of training as a neurosurgeon, Paul Kalanithi was diagnosed with stage IV lung cancer. One day he was a doctor treating the dying, and the next he was a patient struggling to live. And just like that, the future he and his wife had imagined evaporated. When Breath Becomes Air chronicles Kalanithi’s transformation from a naïve medical student “possessed,” as he wrote, “by the question of what, given that all organisms die, makes a virtuous and meaningful life” into a neurosurgeon at Stanford working in the brain, the most critical place for human identity, and finally into a patient and new father confronting his own mortality. 

What makes life worth living in the face of death? What do you do when the future, no longer a ladder toward your goals in life, flattens out into a perpetual present? What does it mean to have a child, to nurture a new life as another fades away? These are some of the questions Kalanithi wrestles with in this profoundly moving, exquisitely observed memoir. 

Paul Kalanithi died in March 2015, while working on this book, yet his words live on as a guide and a gift to us all. “I began to realize that coming face to face with my own mortality, in a sense, had changed nothing and everything,” he wrote. “Seven words from Samuel Beckett began to repeat in my head: ‘I can’t go on. I’ll go on.'” When Breath Becomes Air is an unforgettable, life-affirming reflection on the challenge of facing death and on the relationship between doctor and patient, from a brilliant writer who became both.

What I Love: Die with dignity.

It’s the clarion call of Paul Kalanithi’s words carried in his posthumously published book, When Breath Becomes Air.

I ended up sobbing, with eyes swollen but it is a worth it less-than 200-page journey.

Travelling inside the mind and heart and soul of a dying doctor, who had always searched for life’s meaning is enlightening and moving.

Reading about death has always woke up the mortal in me. This is maybe why I am so fond of Mitch Albom’s books. Books about dying breathe life back to my purpose. My life’s meaning.

Why am I here?
What am I doing?
What makes life worth living?

What I Don’t Love Much: While the ending made me cry, it’s moving. So I have nothing to not like about this book.

Wise Words:

“I can’t go on. I’ll go on.” 

“You can’t ever reach perfection, but you can believe in an asymptote toward which you are ceaselessly striving.” 

“Life wasn’t about avoiding suffering.” 

“Human knowledge is never contained in one person. It grows from the relationships we create between each other and the world, and still it is never complete.” 

“The main message of Jesus, I believed, is that mercy trumps justice every time.”

©2018 Rosemawrites@A Reading Writer. All Rights Reserved.
Photos and Story Summary: Goodreads and Unsplash

 

 

Book Review: My Heart and Other Black Holes by Jasmine Warga

My Heart and Other Black Holes

46th – My Heart and Other Black Holes by Jasmine Warga

Rating: ❤❤❤❤ (Good read, definitely!)

What is it about: Sixteen-year-old physics nerd Aysel is obsessed with plotting her own death. With a mother who can barely look at her without wincing, classmates who whisper behind her back, and a father whose violent crime rocked her small town, Aysel is ready to turn her potential energy into nothingness.

There’s only one problem: she’s not sure she has the courage to do it alone. But once she discovers a website with a section called Suicide Partners, Aysel’s convinced she’s found her solution: a teen boy with the username FrozenRobot (aka Roman) who’s haunted by a family tragedy is looking for a partner.

Even though Aysel and Roman have nothing in common, they slowly start to fill in each other’s broken lives. But as their suicide pact becomes more concrete, Aysel begins to question whether she really wants to go through with it. Ultimately, she must choose between wanting to die or trying to convince Roman to live so they can discover the potential of their energy together. Except that Roman may not be so easy to convince.

What I Love: I love the characters because the writer was able to make them both relatable. You feel them, their pain, their hopelessness and even as they fall in love.

The struggles of the two main characters are revealed in a heart tugging way.

This book will make you smile, it will make you laugh, and it will make you feel for more sensitive for teenagers who may be depressed.

What I Don’t Love Much: Nothing.

Wise Words:

“Depression is like a heaviness that you can’t ever escape.”

“Sometimes I wonder if gravity is the problem. It keeps us all grounded, gives us this false sense of stability when really we’re all just bodies in motion. Gravity keeps us from floating up into space, it keeps us from involuntarily crashing into one another. It saves the human race from being a big hot mess.”

“Maybe that’s what love really boils down to-having someone who cares enough to pay attention so that you’re encouraged to travel and transfer, to make your potential energy spark into kinetic energy. Maybe all anyone ever needs is for someone to notice them, to observe them.”

©2016 Rosemawrites@A Reading Writer. All Rights Reserved.
Photo and Story Summary: Goodreads and Unsplash

Book Review: A Murder Is Announced by Agatha Christie

A Murder is Announced

“It’s what’s in yourself that makes you happy or unhappy.”

45th – A Murder Is Announced (Miss Marple, #5) by Agatha Christie

Rating: ❤❤❤❤❤ (BEST, GREAT read!)

What is it about: Villagers expect a fun game after a Gazette announcement of murder, but when lights flash off, shots ring out, and a masked burglar falls dead, the Inspector and vicar’s wife Bunch call in expert Miss Jane Marple. Was Swiss hotel clerk Rudi framed? Miss Letitia Blackstone houses scatty Dora, cousins Julia and Patrick, gardener widow Phillipa, and paranoid cook Mitzi.

What I Love: Madame Agatha Christie is one beautifully twisted writer. You can never ever know who kills who. She is the best example why I love mystery and crimes. The tension, the suspense, the revelation! Geez!!

What I Don’t Love Much: Nothing!

Wise Words: “…what people do see at a moment of intense excitement and nervous strain. What they do see and, even more interesting, what they don’t see.”

“…if you have pain, you know how to enjoy the exquisite pleasure of the times when pain stops.”

“One is alone when the last one who remembers is gone.”

©2016 Rosemawrites@A Reading Writer. All Rights Reserved.
Photo and Story Summary: Goodreads and Unsplash