I read a lot. On the weekends, I still get up as early as I do during the week (around 5:30 AM) and sit for hours with my coffee and a book. Well, my kindle, more likely. I read a variety of genres, I think, but my heart belongs to historical fiction, memoirs, and fantasy series. And since I read so much, I use my library to check books out on my kindle as often as possible, but my library’s selection leaves a lot to be desired.
And recently, I’ve been buying physical books again, because I like to make notes; for non-fiction, and books I’m trying to “learn” things from, I feel like I retain more, internalize more, when I sit with my pen and a real book. But this concerns me, because as you may or may not know, I had a bookshelf FULL of books just last year and got rid of ALL of them, save the ones that had very special meaning to me, and I don’t necessarily want to “collect” physical books again. But the moment I set foot in a bookstore, I feel a jolt of adrenaline and joy to be surrounded by so many books. Books I can bring home with me, and call my own. Books I can make my mark in.
Which leads me to my new project: Daily Didion. I started this on 1/1 and intend to post at least one Joan Didion quote a day via the @dailydidion instagram account. I’ve been basically inhaling everything Didion I can get my hands on lately, and as I read, have to stop and think about a line or a word, series of words, before I continue reading. Her prose, writing style, is so compelling, I had to do something with it.
These words, specifically, (above) hit me over the head when I read them. Finally, I think I understand why I DON’T like having so much stuff around, things that remind me of mistakes, moments I missed. Those things, little mementos, are supposed to transport us back to the moment they represent, but do they? Many of the things I was holding on to were making me feel guilty, and sad.
Anyway, @dailydidion is just my way of keeping a notebook, as it were (another nod to Joan) and bringing to life, sharing, words that demand my attention. I hope you’ll join me there if you’re so inclined.
On to some other books I’ve read recently (below). Just this weekend I read The Nightingale, and it was wonderful, a page-turner, and a beautiful story, but I don’t think I can handle another WWII book for a while. Before that, I read H is for Hawk which was stunning to me; I don’t know how else to describe it. It’s a very real look at grief (something else I need to stop reading so much about…) and how the author dealt with it, among other things. I can’t say more about it other than just to urge you to read it.
I read Mindy Kaling because I wanted to try, but it was not for me. Tell the Wolves I’m Home also dealt with grief and sisters; it was very very good, I thought about it for a long time after finishing it. Life after Life was very good also, and a very interesting premise, definitely worth a read, but I found when I started reading the next book in the series, I was over it.
What have you read lately? Any recommendations?