Historical fiction is a difficult genre to write in, especially because the times are so far back in the past that you have to be extremely careful with your research. You can’t disrespect the past while you write your story, and you have to get things exactly right. But when authors do get it right, they manage to blow you away in more ways than one and in ways you’ll often not see coming. Among this population of authors is Nguyễn Phan Quế Mai, who, after seven years of research, published the book The Mountains Sing, a story set before and during the Việt Nam war. I became an instant fan of her when I finally read it in December 2022. And not just because of the book.
Category Archives: Books in 2022
A Room of One’s Own by Virginia Woolf | Book Discussion / Thoughts | Part 2
A few months ago, I talked about one of my very first books of 2022: Virginia Woolf’s A Room of One’s Own. It wasn’t a review, for how can I review a book of that stature? As it stands tall and stands up for women through time and space? As it calls out the misogyny and sexism that we have come to take as ‘normal’? As it shows us why Virginia Woolf is a much-loved figure in English literature? How could I have done all that? No, never in a thousand lives! I merely took my favorite quotes from the book and wrote a piece about why Woolf is so relevant. A book discussion/thoughts of sorts. That was part 1.
And here, finally, is part 2.
All the Lovers in the Night by Mieko Kawakami | Book Review
Some books let out war cries as they make their point, some are mere noise but no impact. Some books are quiet as they pack a punch that you will remember until the end of your days, and some are quiet and lazy, giving you a much needed respite from everyday life; they are like vacations in a seaside resort – scenic and calm, but put you in touch with yourself. But yet others are so quiet, move so slowly, and make no overall point whatsoever that it just gets on your nerves. The adventure that you seek in reading, in literature, seems to be missing from such books. And one of my recent reads, Mieko Kawakami’s All the Lovers in the Night, is a prime example of that last type.
Malibu Rising by Taylor Jenkins Reid | Book Review
Celebrities’ lives are always beyond what we can even begin to comprehend. What we see in the media is such a small fragment of what their lives actually are like. The pressure to perform, to look good, to have that perfect balance or at least look like it – all this, while staying true to themselves is one that simmers under their smiling, picture-perfect facades. And there’s one author – among the many, I’m sure, but my favorite of them – who does it amazingly well: Taylor Jenkins Reid.
Frank Carter: Chapter 4 by Yashesh Rathod | Book Review
It’s always a shock when a series – be it book or movie – ends but we lose some much-loved characters as it does. Yet, we know that it was necessary for the plot, because without these events, the story wouldn’t have progressed. But what of when the author decides to do something about it by continuing the series? To give the reader hope that, oh, there is a possibility! That if the author has started on this path, then the characters will most likely be back? This is the case with the Frank Carter series by Yashesh Rathod. The third book in the series saw two important characters die. But with book 4, the author is putting the possibility of them coming back out there.
Tin Man by Sarah Winman | Book Review
We’re in an age where the world has decreed that making noise is the only way to be noticed. Social media has made it easy for us to do this, even though half the time, the noise is unnecessary and on the wrong side of the line. But it’s there. And in times like these, it happens very rarely that we come across a book that’s as hard-hitting as it is quiet. And isn’t that a truth of life? That some of the most hard-hitting things in life creep up on you quietly and some of the most intensely wise people are the quiet ones. A king among these things is this book, Tin Man by Sarah Winman, a fitting, winning rhyme if ever there was one.
Rereading the Heartstopper Books & Watching the TV Show | #Blogtober22 – Day 22
In 2021, a subscriber and now friend suggested that I read the Heartstopper graphic novel series by Alice Oseman. So I read it and this way, found one of my favorite series of all time. In hindsight, 2021 was a great year for finding favorites. This one especially touched a part of my heart and filled it with warmth and goodness. When the TV adaptation came out earlier this year, I knew I had to watch it, but I couldn’t at the time. Months went by and plans of rereading the series and watching the show were razed to the ground because of our move to Sydney.
A Room of One’s Own by Virginia Woolf | Book Discussion / Thoughts | #Blogtober22 – Day 20
Earlier this year, I had the extremely transformative experience of reading Virginia Woolf’s A Room of One’s Own. I didn’t think it would affect me the way it did, especially since Woolf’s To the Lighthouse was a disappointing one for me. But as I progressed with A Room of One’s Own, I was consumed by it. I read in awe as Woolf detailed the sexism that women writers face in a time when women didn’t have the freedom to do as they wanted. So many scathing points written sometimes with detached politeness, other times with undisguised annoyance, and at yet others narrated stoically – they sit with you for all of eternity, like they’ve settled down in my mind.
And what a way to condense the book into one sentence:
A woman must have money and a room of her own if she is to write fiction.
All for the Game Trilogy by Nora Sakavic | Book Review | #Blogtober22 – Day 17
There are some books that enter your life just like that but leave lasting impressions on you. They might not be what you’d prefer to read but they’re strong enough and sure enough in themselves and the lessons they are giving you that you appreciate them for what they are. I came across one such trilogy a couple of months ago when I read the All for the Game trilogy by Nora Sakavic. The name of the trilogy might seem all easygoing, all in fun. But trust me, it’s got the heaviness of a thousand truckload of bricks raining down on you.
The Gods Are Not Dead by Abhaidev | Book Review | #Blogtober22 – Day 4
“This is the thing about life. If you are a nobody, you are free. The day you become somebody, attain power, you lose your freedom forever. Power and fame come at a price, which is accountability and peace of mind. The more public you get, the more answerable you become.”
It is a universal truth that man is a fickle and impressionable being. And this quote from Abhaidev’s newest release, The Gods Are Not Dead, perfectly summarizes what a man is and what he is capable of. It is also self-explanatory, for it captures the soul of the book it appears in.