Day 20: Favorite Romance Book

Okay, I know people, especially guys, hesitate from telling that they have read romantic books. I am sometimes like that, if truth be said. But I am going to answer the question honestly today. Yes, I have read some romantic books. If you like reading, you can read anything. You do not think about the theme or genre then.

Yes, there are certain books which you can not read because they are just not for you. It isn’t necessary for you to like a popular book. I would raise my hand if you ask a group of men if they have tried reading Fifty Shades of Grey. I dd try but it was not for me. Hence, I left it after reading twenty pages or so. But that is not what I am asked to discuss today. I just wanted to notify that you must not be embarrassed of the books you read.

I have read Twilight series at least twice. People may roll their eyes, so what? I enjoyed reading it. There is nothing wrong in that or is it!? Okay, I am deviating from the topic.

Back to the question, I have read majorly romantic books by Sarah Dessen and Nicholas Sparks. They were an alright read but I never liked them to an extent that I would want to discuss about them. I will rather discuss a book I have mentioned in earlier posts but you may not have possibly read it or even heard of it.

This book is One Day by David Nicholls. It is a very simple tale of two people and their relationship. The book narrates the events of a single day year after year for 20 years, telling the story of these two people. Sometimes they are together while sometimes they are not. It progresses from their first meeting to various stages of their life as the meaning of their relationship changes over time.

Things I like about this book:

1. The character-sketch is brilliant. It is one of the best I have read in the romantic genre.

2. The story is very interesting. Events of a single day year after year, how thrilling is that!

3. The story actually talks about a relationship and its development from the first meeting onward. Moreover, it is not at all cheesy.

4. The story comes full-circle in the end. I particularly liked how the emotions are embedded in this book. And when I say this story is based on the lives of these two main characters, that is not the only thing. There are some other characters that leave an impression on you.

That is all.

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Day 19: Favorite book turned into a movie

Continuing with the 30 Day Book Challenge, it is time to discuss the film adaptations of your most liked books. I am rather discussing here the film adaptations I didn’t like at all because they had ruined the story from the book and those which I liked, for they remained true to the story. I have just taken the question, a step further.

Some of the movies I did not like are-

1. It’s Kind of A Funny Story: This is the first novel in which I could relate with the protagonist because of the same “situations” in life. The fact was that I read this novel around the time when I started acknowledging my own mental-health related problems. I did not feel such connection with the movie, which was really strange according to me. The novel made me understand about the characters, while the movie was a mess in which I could not understand what was happening.

One scene which was true to a few lines of the novel

2. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince: This is one of the most important books in the series because it tells of the story of Voldemort and how he turned out to be as he was, but it was thoroughly ignored in the movie. The movie was all about absurd relationships (which is not the main theme of Harry Potter) and some incidents which were completely out of context.

3. The Silver Linings Playbook: A thought-provoking book has been turned into a love story in the movie. The way the depression is portrayed in the movie seemed to me quite radical. I just didn’t like the entire setting. They must have informed before hand that it was going to be a movie based on the game of football.

And the movies I liked-

1. The Perks of Being A Wallflower: This is one movie which complied with the story and presented the characters as they were meant to be. the main difference here is that the movie is directed by Stephen Chbosky, who is also the author of the novel. That really worked.

2. Never Let Me Go: I watched the movie before I read the novel (also in case of The Silver Linings Playbook). I liked the movie originally and continued to like it even after reading the novel. Because the movie had summarized the events of the novel in an amazing way so that nothing important is left.  Reading the novel afterwards was just knowing more about the characters and the story.

Day 18: A Book That Made You Laugh

First of all, I haven’t read any book which could be pertained to be belonging to the humor genre. I tried reading Hitchhiker’s Guide To Galaxy but I found it morbid rather than funny. I rather laugh at the incidents from the books I read, whether they are a drama or an adult fiction.

Some of these books are-

1. The Help by Kathryn Stockett: It is a brilliant book with all the elements of life, sadness, racism and even some humor, gathered together in a bundle which is this book. I loved Minny Jackson and her “sassiness” a lot. There were certain stances where I couldn’t control my laughter, like Minnie’s comments about Celia Foote or the chocolate pie incident (Hilly’s mother buying the pie for her, that was hilarious). If you haven’t read the book, I won’t spoil the fun. Go grab a copy now.

2. PS I Love You by Cecelia Ahern: This is the only chick lit which I read and completed, and that is not because of the roots of sadness in this book but because of certain funny events that span throughout the story, like when the three friends are stranded on a raft far away from the beach and their mad conversation.

3. A Year in Provence by Peter Mayle: It is a nonfiction book, in which the author discusses his first years living in Provence in France. It is a warm tale and quite funny as well, as the author informs of the lifestyle of his neighbors and the damn funny conversations that ensue between them and the difficulties they had to deal with to get some repairs done as well as because of the distant friends who would invite themselves at their place. It was indeed a fun read.

I guess, that much is enough for today.

Day 17: Favorite Quote from A Book

I have many favorite quotes that come from a variety of books. Some of them are:-

“Imagining the future is a kind of nostalgia. (…) You spend your whole life stuck in the labyrinth, thinking about how you’ll escape it one day, and how awesome it will be, and imagining that future keeps you going, but you never do it. You just use the future to escape the present.”
— John Green (Looking for Alaska)

“But there was something I liked about the idea of those seeds buried so deep having at least a chance to emerge”
— Sarah Dessen

“We took away your art because we thought it would reveal your souls. Or to put it more finely, we did it to prove you had souls at all.”
— Kazuo Ishiguro (Never Let Me Go)

“What is pertinent is the calmness of beauty, its sense of restraint. It is as though the land knows of its own beauty, its own greatness, and feels no need to shout it.”
— Kazuo Ishiguro (The Remains of the Day)

“Don’t ever tell anybody anything. If you do, you start missing everybody.”
— J.D. Salinger (The Catcher in the Rye)

“No one knows for certain how much impact they have on the lives of other people. Oftentimes, we have no clue. Yet we push it just the same.”
— Jay Asher (Thirteen Reasons Why)

“When did we see each other face-to-face? Not until you saw into my cracks and I saw into yours. Before that, we were just looking at ideas of each other, like looking at your window shade but never seeing inside. But once the vessel cracks, the light can get in. The light can get out.”
— John Green (Paper Towns)

I will not write anything else but this:-

“A quote is something that grabs your heart; you feel its absence in your chest because it has been stolen by the words that you thought were written just for you.”

-HA

Day 16: Your favorite genre

Okay, now it comes to favorite genre. I don’t know how to answer that question. Because I enjoy reading books just like that. I read the books of different genre based on my desire of what I want to read. If I want to read suspense/thriller, I will pick up a novel by Sidney Sheldon or explore some other spy/crime thrillers.

Hence, I am going to list down the genres I like and some of the books I like, which can be interpreted to be belonging to that genre:-

1. Mythology- I am like a teenager that way because I like the Percy Jackson series as well as The Kane Chronicles, both by Rick Riordan.

2. Horror- Desperation and Salem’s Lot, both by Stephen King

3. Mystery/Suspense/Thriller- Sidney Sheldon novels, A Prisoner of Birth by Jeffrey Archer, Dan Brown books to some extent

4. Historical Fiction- The Remains of the Day by Kazuo Ishiguro, novels by Khaled Hosseini, The Shadow Lines by Amitav Ghosh

5. Biography- Tuesdays with Morrie by Mitch Albom, A Year in Provence by Peter Mayle

6. Drama- Books by John Green, Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher

7. Fantasy/Supernatural- The Dead Zone by Stephen King, Every Day by David Levithan, Harry Potter series

8. Science Fiction- Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro,

9. Short Stories- Interpreter of Maladies by Jhumpa Lahiri, short stories collection by Jeffrey Archer

10. Adult Fiction- The Zahir and The Winner Stands Alone, by Paulo Coelho, The Five People You Meet in Heaven by Mitch Albom

and etc, etc…

I don’t like the idea of literary genres. I rather believe in something like this:

Day 15: Your Five Favorite Characters

A very hard question. I like so many characters. I don’t know which of them are my favorites; so I am discussing some characters that I liked (again, in no particular order):

1. Mariam from A Thousand Splendid Suns: She is sort of a submissive character who adheres to the male-dominant society throughout her life but when it gets unbearable, she revolts and she becomes mighty powerful. It was the change in her character with time along with her ultimate sacrifice which makes her a very powerful character,

2. Tridib from The Shadow Lines: He is a mysterious character who is kept to be quite suspenseful throughout the book. He is mature, understanding and a master story-teller. He is instantly likable. Even though he holds a small part in the book, he is significant to the story.

3. Margo Roth Spiegelman from Paper Towns: She is another mysterious character and the basis of the plot of the novel. She is a free soul who thinks deep and make such decisions to live a life, breaking the social norms. She is a person I would like to be myself.

4. Holden Caulfield from The Catcher in the Rye: Here I am mentioning once again, one of the most criticized characters. He is some one with a distinct personality with individual thoughts which are sometimes confusing, yet profound. The character development is really commendable in this classic by J.D. Salinger.

5. Balram Halwai from The White Tiger: The protagonist who is also the antagonist from this Man Booker Prize (2008) winner book is some one I wouldn’t like at all as a person but would have understood him and his actions to some extent, which given any degree of circumstance were still not justifiable. But I do like the character sketch which is successful in bringing to life this character. I would recommend you to read this book to know this complex character who is just a common man but a lot more than that.

That is all.

Day 14: Favorite author from your childhood

Well, I was exposed to books quite late. I enjoyed reading even when I was little but I was too innocent to ask my parents to buy me books. I had only a book or two in my book shelf. Yes, I was quite shy. I am an introvert and have been like that since forever. Therefore, I used to spend time reading short stories from my language textbooks at school. I still recall many of them because I had read them quite a few number of times.

Of course, I can’t recount my favorite authors because I hadn’t any. That time the image I had of an author was obscured by the heavy books of biology, physics and chemistry, my sister used to study. Rather I will discuss the few stories I enjoyed then which were not based on the curriculum.

Panchatantra Tales by Vishnu Sharma were quite an enjoyable read. I had (still have) a kid’s book with certain stories of Panchatantra like that of the crocodile and the monkey and of the greedy milkman, etc. I liked reading them because of the simple language and a moral at the end of every story.

The Monkey and the Crocodile

Also, I spent a lot of time reading religious books that belonged to my mother. I liked and still like reading mythological tales. I was always amazed by the prayer of the devotees and the power of the gods and goddesses. It is quite an irony because I am an agnostic and sometimes an atheist.

Furthermore, I used to read every single page of a kid’s magazine that used to come  along with the newspaper every Friday.

I know this post is getting really boring for you to read. I will finish by writing that it is never too late to start reading. The books mean a lot to me. I like them. I live in their stories.

I am not reading much right now. But I know I just need to get into the flow of it once again which I would eventually.