Books, books and more books

There is one thing that makes me get through the days at work: my colleagues! I am grateful to be able to meet and befriend such amazing people.

Not only do they keep me grounded, keep my sanity in check, but they surprise me in ways I couldn’t even imagine.

After a long day at work, with just one break for a quick phone call (also work related), I felt like crawling under a rock. It was one of those days, where nothing made sense and things went from bad to worse, with no chance of improvement.

And yet, in an instant the world became a better place. 

I still can’t believe that someone took it upon themselves to remember what my favorite book is, and also the fact that I do not own a copy of it. That same someone, decided I should own a copy!

I am now the proud owner of the Romanian version of Stardust, by Neil Gaiman! It is still in its wrapping, since I can’t bring myself to open it yet. Like all good things that happen in my life, I want to enjoy the moment. So, for a lil while it will stay in its wrapping.

Oh, and that’s not all. That same someone, decided I should own a copy of one of their favorite authors. So, I am also the proud owner of a copy of The Last Orc by Silvana de Mari.

I can honestly say it made my day brighter in an instant (even if it was almost midnight when I left from work). 

I also can’t wait for this Sunday to come around. It will be the night shift get together. We all decided to go and see Logan at the cinema, before starting our shift. Good things are yet to come, I just need to be patient.

2017 Must Read Books

“You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream” – C.S. Lewis
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I don’t like to make plans when books are concerned. I like to have the choice of picking whatever I want, whenever I want.
Yet, there are a few books I keep for those moments when everything in the universe is perfect. Believe it or not, those moments do come, even if once in a blue moon.

A Dog’s Purpose by W. Bruce Cameron

A Dog's Purpose
This is the remarkable story of one endearing dog’s search for his purpose over the course of several lives. More than just another charming dog story, this touches on the universal quest for an answer to life’s most basic question: Why are we here?

This one is a pretty obvious choice for someone like me. Most likely, I will be reading it in bed with Marlanu’ and Pluto sleeping beside me.

A Long Way Home by Saroo Brierley
A long way home
I’ve been thinking about this day for twenty-five years. Growing up half a world away, with a new name and a new family, wondering whether I would ever see my mother and brothers and sister again. And now here I am, standing at a door near the corner of a run-down building in a poor district of a small, dusty town in central India – the place I grew up – and no-one lives there.

Another book that got itself a movie. I don’t know what to expect from this one. I really hope it isn’t a “feel good” book as Slumdog Millionaire.

A Passage to India by E.M. Forster
A passage to India
When Adela Quested and her elderly companion Mrs Moore arrive in the Indian town of Chandrapore, they quickly feel trapped by its insular and prejudiced ‘Anglo-Indian’ community. Determined to escape the parochial English enclave and explore the ‘real India’, they seek the guidance of the charming and mercurial Dr Aziz, a cultivated Indian Muslim.”

I am a big fan of slow paced novels.

A Bride’s Story series by Kaoru Mori
A Brides story
Acclaimed creator Kaoru Mori (Emma, Shirley) brings the nineteenth-century Silk Road to lavish life, chronicling the story of Amir Halgal, a young woman from a nomadic tribe betrothed to a twelve-year-old boy eight years her junior. Coping with cultural differences, blossoming feelings for her new husband, and expectations from both her adoptive and birth families, Amir strives to find her role as she settles into a new life and a new home in a society quick to define that role for her.

This is a manga or a graphic novel (as many like to call them). The author is one of my favorite just for bringing to life the “Emma” series.

Me Before You by Jojo Moyes
Me before you
Louisa Clark is an ordinary girl living an exceedingly ordinary life—steady boyfriend, close family—who has barely been farther afield than their tiny village. She takes a badly needed job working for ex–Master of the Universe Will Traynor, who is wheelchair bound after an accident.

What is life without a bit of romance?

Poirot and Me by David Suchet, Geoffrey Wansell
Poirot and Me
Through his television performance in ITV’s Agatha Christie’s Poirot, David Suchet has become inextricably linked with the ‘little Belgian’, a man whom he has grown to love dearly through an intimate relationship lasting more than twenty years.

One of the few books that I own (not as a ebook or audio book).

An Autobiography by Agatha Christie, Robert Herrick
An Autobiography
Fans of Hercule Poirot and Miss Marple and readers of John Curran’s fascinating biographies Agatha Christie’s Secret Notebooks and Murder in the Making will be spellbound by the compelling, authoritative account of one of the world’s most influential and fascinating novelists, told in her own words and inimitable style.

North and South by Elizabeth Gaskell
North and South
When her father leaves the Church in a crisis of conscience, Margaret Hale is uprooted from her comfortable home in Hampshire to move with her family to the north of England. Initially repulsed by the ugliness of her new surroundings in the industrial town of Milton, Margaret becomes aware of the poverty and suffering of the local mill workers and develops a passionate sense of social justice.

Little Women by Louisa May Alcott
Little Women
Following the lives of four sisters on a journey out of adolescence, Louisa May Alcott’s Little Women explores the difficulties associated with gender roles in a Post-Civil War America.

My reading list is pretty big. I am sure that if I read about 50 books per year, it will take me a lifetime to read at least half of my list.

A Dog’s Purpose

I can’t believe I’m setting up reminders for movies that will be released in 2017. Yet, this is what I am doing. “A Dog’s Purpose” is the first one on the list.

Yes, we love dogs a lot. We even went out with other friends dog owners to see “The Secret Life of Pets” when it came out.

I don’t mind that the movies comes out in January. In fact, it gives me plenty of time to read the novels before we see the movie. “A Dog’s Purpose” is based on the novel with the same name, written by W. Bruce Cameron. There is also a sequel named “A Dog’s Journey” written by the same author.

A Dog's Purposea dog's journey

I realized I love books that have pets in them. I loved “Chez Stinky” by Susan C. Daffron and I am looking for her other books from the An Alpine Grove Romantic Comedy series. They are a bit hard to find, I must admit that. Buying them from abroad is not an option. So, most likely I will go for the electronic format or audio book version.

These are feel good stories, and maybe that’s why I get excited when something like this gets released.

I actually realized that most of the movies that do come out now are based on novels or comic books. In a way that is a good thing, but from experience that is not always the case. The movies turn out to be a real disaster and leave a bitter taste.

Then there are those few that break the rule, for example those movies that are as good or even better than the books (like it happened with “Stardust” or “The Princess Bride”).

The trailer for “A Dog’s Purpose” looks really nice, so I’m hoping the movie will be as lovely as possible. *fingers crossed*

Books, books and more books

Books, books and more books!

One can never have enough books, even if they are running out of shelving space. I must admit, it is a pain in the ass to clean up the bookcase, considering the amount of dust and animal hair that goes around in this house. Yet, I wouldn’t have it any other way.

Reading books on my Kindle

I am going for two things this year: pay off my debt (4 months to go) and completing my reading challenge (50 books). So far, I am on track with both of them. If all goes well, at the end of the year I will be able to say “I am debt free“, and also that I have cultivated my mind and soul.

While I do own a Kindle, I also listen to audio books and I also love reading the good all fashion way.

I am not prejudiced to any method of devouring the content of a good book. For a while audio books have been the obvious choice for me. Given the amount of work I put in, at my actual workplace and at home. Audio books free up my hands! I can do other things, like cleaning, cooking or even stitching.

Kindle helps me be a hoarder on my laptop, without killing my budget or filling up the house. It saves space, and I never liked a cluttered house.

But there are some books that I would rather own. Not many, but some I just love seeing in my bookcase.

~~~~~~

I am a huge fan of Agatha Christie. If I ever get to visit U.K., most likely I will visit all the places that have connection with her and with Hercule Poirot. It is also my dream to have a book signed by David Suchet. He is the one and only Hercule Poirot! Following this logic, it was only natural for me to freak out when I saw this jewel in Carturesti Carusel:

David Suchet: Poirot and me

David Suchet: Poirot and me

I did try to get the English version, but they didn’t have it. I won’t complain, since it was such an unexpected find. I didn’t have the heart to remove the plastic cover. I think that will be done when I start reading it. I am keeping it for our August vacation.

In fact, in the last two months I managed to get my hands on a few volumes that are certainly interesting.

Book stash

There are more actually, is just they aren’t in the house at the moment. At work, we do borrow from others, but we also lent others our books. This is one of the things that I love about work.

M. R. Carey The girl with all the giftsDebra Driza Mila 2.0 Penguin Pocket BooksAndrzej Sapkowski

I did read “The girl with all the gifts”. It is the only one I got the chance to finish. In fact it was hard not to finish, since it captivated me so much. It took me just one Saturday. It was a well spent Saturday. I have no regrets about it.

In fact, I am thinking that once I do finish paying off my debt, I could invest in a new bookcase. The one I got from Ikea many years ago is still fine and can hold quite a few volumes of different sizes and shapes. My only problem is that there is no more room in our bedroom, so I will have to set it up in the living room. And yet, I can’t just have one bookcase there. It’s not symmetric enough. So, I will have to settle for two.

I can also use them as storage space, so that’s a win – win situation.

And yes, I am bragging with my lovely collection!

Time you enjoy wasting is not wasted time

“Time you enjoy wasting is not wasted time.” ― Marthe Troly-Curtin

I can honestly say that I’ve wasted my time. Most of it was wasted on sleep, yet most of the times I wake up more tired than when I go to bed. Other times, I just waste it running around in circles and not getting much done (concerning the household chores).

I’m not the most productive person at the moment.

Yet, I feel that these past few weeks the time spent with loved ones and friends was not wasted. Some good memories came out of it, and of course some good photos as well (even if most of them are with our pets).

Time you enjoy wasting is not wasted time.

Aren’t they beautiful?! Our babies have grown up and they are just adorable when they play and hang out together. Not only that, but it feels like they’ve created a friendship between them like the ones we had when we were children. Something that cannot be replaced.

Pluto and MayaTime you enjoy wasting is not wasted time Pluto with his ballMaya taking a nap

I’ve also managed to read a book in one sitting. It was a book from the Maigret series by Georges Simenon: “Maigret And The Idle Burglar“. I’ve actually missed reading and I’ve had a great opportunity this weekend when we babysat Maya (her owner was our of town at a wedding).

Maigret And The Idle Burglar

I loved it because it was one of those slow paced books, even if it was rather short. But then again, a book doesn’t have to be long to be interesting. And, it was really relaxing reading it while Pluto and Maya were sleeping next to me.

Pluto and MayaPluto and Maya sleeping

Of course, now I’ve started a new one called “Maigret’s Failure” by the same author. I’ve realized reading is a good way to go to sleep, especially since I find it hard to sleep during the day (I’m still on the night shift).

 So, my time has been wasted but I enjoyed wasting it. It was a nice break from the fast pace I’ve been having ever since I started work again

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