Every one of us is losing something precious to us. Lost opportunities, lost possibilities, feelings we can never get back again. That’s part of what it means to be alive.
-Haruki Murakami, Kafka on the Shore
Month: November 2015
Book #52 – 2015 Reading Challenge – Mornings in Jenin by Susan Abulhawa
The perfect read to end my 2015 Reading Challenge! Book #52…
If you don’t have any idea about the Palestine-Israeli conflict, this book offers an excellent introduction about it and about the suffering of the people of Palestine.
1947 — the year that was — for the Jewish, the creation of their homeland, the state of Israel; for the Palestinians, the year their land was taken from them, the year they became refugees.
This is such a powerful story about the sufferings of the Palestinians in the hands of the Israelis that will leave you raging with emotions that I have to keep reminding myself that it was a work of fiction (though most happenings were based on facts).
A beautifully written book that gave me a different view about the Palestinian people and everything they have lost. It’s one of the most heart-breaking books I’ve ever read, I recommend it to everyone.
What a perfect read to complete my 2015 Reading Challenge! 🙂
Favorite quotes : ““Always” was a good word to believe in.”
“He brushed his lips against mine, pulled me closer, and I felt as if I had lived all my life for that kiss.”
“I was a word drained of its meaning. A woman emptied of her past. The truth is that I wanted to be someone else.”
“Baba’s absence since the war had grown as big as the ocean and all its fishes. As big as the sky and earth and all their birds and trees. The hurt in my heart was as big as the universe and all its planets.”
Rating : 5/5 stars
Quote of the Week
The only way out of the labyrinth of suffering is to forgive.
– John Green, Looking for Alaska
“Every now and then one paints a picture that seems to have opened a door and serves as a stepping stone to other things.” – Pablo Picasso
Book #51 – 2015 Reading Challenge – The Giver by Lois Lowry
I knew nothing going into this book except that it is another book turned into a movie with Taylor Swift in it. 🙂 Book #51 for my 2015 Reading Challenge…
This is a fast-paced and no lulls book with a very well-described setting which makes it a very interesting read for me. Its concept is very engaging. It’s very effective in making my brain think and ask questions. A well-written book for both children and adult. It makes you realize the importance of making your own choices and not letting others make the choices for you.
This is my first experience with Lois Lowry and I’m looking forward for more.
Favorite quotes : “The worst part of holding the memories is not the pain. It’s the loneliness of it. Memories need to be shared.”
“We gained control of many things. But we had to let go of others.”
““I feel sorry for anyone who is in a place where he feels strange and stupid.”
Rating : 5/5 stars
There’s something about empty benches…
Book #50 – 2015 Reading Challenge – Miss Marple’s Final Cases by Agatha Christie
The last Agatha Christie book I have at home is Book #50 for my 2015 Reading Challenge.
This may not be the best Agatha Christie book but it’s still worth a read. Bite-size mysteries you can enjoy anytime, any day. The Dressmaker’s Doll is spooky and is my favorite in this collection.
I’m going to miss the witty and clever Miss Marple since I don’t have and I can’t find the other books that feature her. However, that won’t stop me from reading Agatha Christie’s other works.
Rating : 3.5/5 stars
Quote of the Week
The same boiling water that softens the potato hardens the egg.
It’s about what you’re made of, not the circumstances.
Book #49 – 2015 Reading Challenge – A Long Way Gone by Ishmael Beah
This book intrigued me when I first saw it in the bookstore while checking out the non-fiction shelf. I can’t remember reading anything about boy soldiers before and I’m glad I picked this up. Book #49 for my 2015 Reading Challenge…
When I was 12 years old, I was enjoying a fruitful life with my parents and brothers. I go to school, I play sports, hang out with friends, travel, etc. Life was great. But when Ishmael Beah was at that same age, he was running for his life in Sierra Leone, became a boy soldier left with only two choices: kill or be killed.
This is a quick, great and honestly-written book worth reading. My only disappointment was the ending. He mentioned in the book that he ended up living in the US with his adoptive mother but I wanted to know more how he got there from Guinea and what happened after. Other than that, I highly recommend this book to everyone, though it’s a heart-breaking story, it is an important topic/subject everyone should be aware of. It’s a great read that will make you step back, stop complaining and be thankful for what you have.
Favorite quotes : “Some nights the sky wept stars that quickly floated and disappeared into the darkness before our wishes could meet them.”
“Some people tried to hurt us to protect themselves, their family and communities…This was one of the consequences of civil war. People stopped trusting each other, and every stranger became an enemy.”
“At night it felt as if we were walking with the moon. It followed us under thick clouds and waited for us at the other end of dark forest paths. It would disappear with sunrise but return again, hovering on our path. Some nights the sky wept stars that quickly floated and disappeared into the darkness before our wishes could meet them. Under these stars I used to hear stories, but now it seemed as if it was the sky that was telling us a story as its stars fell, violently colliding with each other. The moon hid behind clouds to avoid seeing what was happening.”
“My childhood had gone by without my knowing, and it seemed as if my heart had frozen.”
Rating : 4/5 stars
Quote of the Week
“The only disability in life is a bad attitude.”
Book # 48 – 2015 Reading Challenge – Stoner by John Williams
Another book that will stay with me for a long time… Book #48 for my 2015 Reading Challenge…
Stoner is a book that has nothing to do with marijuana or a drug addict. 🙂 It is actually the name of the book’s protagonist. 🙂
On the surface, it looks like a very simple tale. However, the simplicity of it masks the depth and brilliance that runs throughout the story. I personally enjoy books with real, believable characters and situations and this is certainly one of them. I can’t express well why I found this to be such a page-turner because it lacks that “excitement” most people look for in a book nowadays, but it is so deep, significant and captivating.
Being one of the finest books I’ve ever read, I hope you readers can get a chance to read it as well. It’s not that big, life-changing kind of book but it might be a good reminder to everyone that people are important and that your contribution to the world doesn’t have to be something huge, it just have to be relevant and meaningful.
Favorite quotes :
“Sometimes, immersed in his books, there would come to him the awareness of all that he did not know, of all that he had not read; and the serenity for which he labored was shattered as he realized the little time he had in life to read so much, to learn what he had to know.”
“…the person one loves at first is not the person one loves at last, and that love is not an end but a process through which one person attempts to know another.”
“You must remember what you are and what you have chosen to become, and the significance of what you are doing. There are wars and defeats and victories of the human race that are not military and that are not recorded in the annals of history. Remember that while you’re trying to decide what to do.”
Rating : 5/5 stars
Book #47 – 2015 Reading Challenge – Paper Towns by John Green
My third John Green novel is Book #47 for my 2015 Reading Challenge.
Quentin and Margo have been neighbors since they were two years old. Q is an average high school kid with few good friends and is secretly in love with Queen Bee Margo (or with his idea of her).
So one night, a month before graduation, Margo climbs to Q’s windows and tagged him to a revengeful night of adventure. At first, Quentin was nervous about Margo’s plans but soon started to enjoy it as well, thus, it made him think that he could reconnect with Margo again just like when they were younger.
The next day, Margo’s missing. This lead Q and his friends to an adventure of a lifetime.
This book is written from Q’s perspective and so there’s a lot of teenage boy nonsense but very realistic of how teenage boys are. 🙂 It’s hilarious. And insightful. Though I can’t connect much with Q, I was able to enjoy his friends, Ben and Radar. All their clever comments and trash talk were LOL-worthy.
I want to say more about this book but a reread would be good I think before I can express myself more. Even so, this is a thought-provoking read with characters of different personalities and issues you can pretty much relate to, after all, we’ve all been teenagers once. 🙂
Favorite quotes : “What a treacherous thing to believe that a person is more than a person.”
“Talking to a drunk person was like talking to an extremely happy, severely brain-damaged three-year-old.”
“I’m starting to realize that people lack good mirrors. It’s so hard for anyone to show us how we look, & so hard for us to show anyone how we feel.”
“I love you. Not like a sister loves a brother or like a friend loves a friend. I love you like a really drunk guy loves the best girl ever.”
“Peeing is like a good book in that it is very, very hard to stop once you start.”
Rating : 4/5 stars