A Bookish Thing that I’m Doing…

…That you all should do too!

So, this year, I’ve decided to do the Read Harder Challenge that’s run by Goodreads. Some of the categories of books that it requires me to read have just made me go “wut”, which is, I believe, the charm of the challenge.

Please follow the link above to get a hold of the list (and downloadable document) of all the categories of books you need to read to successfully complete the challenge. There are 24 in all, which adds up to a reasonable two a month, especially since it is permissible to read one book that fulfills multiple categories.

I always think it’s a good idea to read books diversely and outside my comfort zone and outside my genres of choice even if I’m reading for pleasure because it’s helpful to me as an aspiring writer. However, even I weren’t an aspiring writer, I think it’s a good idea to learn something about the points of view of people who don’t think the same way as me. With the world getting smaller each day, and with social media becoming an echo chamber of our thoughts and ideas, varied perspectives have become more valuable than ever before. Varied opinions are rarer still. Varied thoughts, varied priorities, varied ideas are all something that can be picked up from books. Even if I’m only reading for pleasure, and I don’t want any sort of information or knowledge from the books that I read, I feel like reading diversely makes me a different person; maybe even a better person.  Maybe.

Serious thoughts aside (Earnest is not a colour that suits me), who knows where my new favourite book or my new favourite author may be hiding, right?

 

From the comfort of our homes and cosy cafés (or taxis or metros or buses or offices under our desks or in line at the bank. Demonetisation, amirite?), let’s dive into books and go exploring in 2017. Come #readharder with me, guys. Journeys are always more fun with friends!

Watch out for the hashtag #readharder on my social media, guys.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/owlishwriter

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/8681585-sindhu

Twitter: @sindrao22

Email: owlishreader@gmail.com
Instagram: owlishphotographer

Hoot.

–Sin

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Currently Reading… An Apparently Unknown Book

I was in Delhi today for work and i had some time to kill before I had to go to the airport. So, naturally, I went to a book store.

I picked up a book called Pangea by Talaiya Safdar.From the description, it seems to be about a dystopic world set after World War III. Dystopia, science fiction, female author, South Asian author, are all my staple food, as everyone who reads this blog knows. I think that the fantasy (non-mythological) and science fiction genres are highly underrepresented in South Asia. 

Then I did what any respectable book blogger would do; I checked for the book on Goodreads to mark it as currently reading and discovered that this book has no ratings and no reviews on Goodreads! This shocks but also excites me; I will make sure to review this book after reading it and if I enjoy it, I’ll make sure it gets a bit more publicity.
I have a long flight journey ahead of me this evening and I’m glad I now have a long distraction-free agenda mapped out for my time on the plane. 
Here’s to getting excited about reviewing again after some soul-crushingly busy weeks at work! Cheers.

Hoot.

–Sin

Go Set a Watchman– Are those butterflies or is it an upset stomach?

Ok guys. I’ve done it. I’ve ordered Go Set a Watchman and I’m eagerly anticipating its delivery.
I am so terrified, especially after hearing that the chapter preview said that Atticus is now in the Ku Klux Klan. (Thank you, everybody on the internet, for mentioning it without a spoiler alert, by the way. I do so enjoy feeling punched in the gut when I open the Facebook app on the pot.) [Speaking of which: ***SPOILER ALERT*** Heh heh.]
I have this feeling each time a sequel is announced for a book that I really love, and that worked really well as a stand-alone.
It isn’t the end of the world though, is it guys? Atticus Finch has inspired hundreds of idealistic, altruistic lawyers in the real world, guys. Our world.
I’m sure some of them were eventually embittered and hardened by reality or just their perception of reality, which incidentally, may be what happened to Atticus. No? Even so, lots of people have entered the profession because of To Kill a Mockingbird. Does a sequel REALLY have to take away from that?
I am so annoyed by all these posts about parents who named their children Atticus who are now supposedly devastated, and what not. I mean, come on! Why? Did your child’s personality alter? Did your hopes and dreams for them alter? I thought not!
Artistic freedom is still a thing, guys. (Although there is a huge controversy about whether Harper Lee really intended this book to see the light of day, but that’s a discussion for a different time. Let’s assume her full and informed consent for the moment.)
So let’s try to get over our angst and read the book. Yes? Or not read the book. And continue loving To Kill a Mockingbird. (That last one isn’t optional.)

On that note, the REAL purpose of this post is to announce that I will be live tweeting as I read Go Set a Watchman and I’ll also write daily posts (Or once in 3 days. Whatever. Still an improvement right? :p) about my thoughts through the book. With my current schedule, it’ll take ages  But…um… stay tuned. :p
I was thinking of using the hashtag #owlishreadsGSAW.
So yes. I guess that’s all.
Oh one last thing. I AM NOW A WEBSITE OWNER. THAT’S RIGHT, PEOPLE! My blog can now be accessed at owlishwriter.com! Go ahead and bookmark it for your easy access! Woot!
Follow me on Twitter if you want to witness me freak out about the book in real time. And everywhere else too, because why not. :p
Here:
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/owlishwriter
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/8681585-sindhu
Twitter: @sindrao22
Email: owlishreader@gmail.com
Instagram: owlishreader
That’s all for now, I guess. 🙂
Hoot.
–Sin

The Biggest Books I’ve Read… and Not Read (The Big Book Tag)

I’ve seen a lot of Youtubers do this tag and I thought it’ll be fun to do it too. I made the list ages ago, but I thought I would read one of the book on the biggest books I haven’t read in October, but you guys know that did NOT happen. (I read only 4 books in October. To put that in perspective, I’ve read 4 books already this month and I have exams going on… So yeah.)

Anyway, the idea is to list the 5 biggest books you’ve read and 2 of the biggest books you own but you haven’t read. I’m going to list 5 of each though, mostly to bully myself into reading these books. 🙂 Also, I love all of the books on my read-list, which is weird and cool. 🙂 They’re all 4 star and above! I really love big books. I remember when I was 13, I went to my school librarian and said, “Ma’am, tests have ended. Please give me a big book to read. Any big book!” She made fun of me for that till I graduated. -.-

I do still admire an author who can write a good book briefly. Like George Orwell. Animal Farm is only 98 pages long! But my personal favourites are always the thick meaty ones that you can make friends with. 🙂 Anyway…

Getting down to the list: (From smallest to biggest.)

The biggest books I’ve read are:

  1. 1Q94 by Haruki Murakami –925 pages
  2. Shantaram  by Gregory David Roberts– 933 pages
  3. David Copperfield by Charles Dickens — 974 pages
  4. Gone with The Wind by Margaret Mitchell — 1011 pages
  5. A Suitable Boy by Vikram Seth — 1368 pages
Not Read:
  1. Sacred Games by Vikram Chandra — 916 pages
  2. Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy 964 pages
  3. Infinite Jest by David Foster Wallace — 1079 pages
  4. Atlas Shrugged  by Ayn Rand–1088 pages
  5. War and Peace  by Leo Tolstoy–1392 Pages

People who are reading, (I hope someone is reading) please comment and let me know what the biggest books you’ve read are. And also tell me what you thought of these ones. 🙂 Especially if they’re the ones I haven’t read. 😛 And… anything else you want to. Feed the Sindhu with your insights. 😀

See ya tomorrow, guys!

Hoot.

–Sin

November Plans

October was not a good reading month, because I read only four books and i didn’t read for a majority of the month.

(I am still working on my review for A Fine Balance. This is not funny anymore, I know. The thing is, this book spoke about so many controversial issues about which I have very strong opinions and it moved me so much, that writing about it is a real struggle. I’m trying not to become too emotional, you know?)

This month will also not be a great reading month, because I have exams from the 11th of November to the 24th and then I am going on a trip with friends, which means reading may not happen.

However, I have had a decent start so far because it is the third of the month and I have already read two books. They were both quick reads so it isn’t an achievement or anything  but it feels good because i was dying to read these books. The first one is Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs.. It’s Young Adult but I really liked it because it was a very unique book. The premise itself is fascinating but the best part of the book is that it has creepy vintage photographs which the author actually found and collected and these photographs have inspired the story. Isn’t that cool????

The second book is actually a reread but I’m counting it as a new read because I didn’t remember most of it when I last read it. This is The Princess Bride, abridged by William Goldman. It’s a fantasy book but it is so rib-crackingly hilarious and fabulous. It is fun, adventurous and unabashedly satirical. I loveeeee it. It may be one of my all-time favourite books. There’s also a much-loved cult-classic movie but I haven’t seen it.

I have no idea what other books I want to read this month. I’ll go where the mood takes me. I have a feeling I’ll just be reading a whole lot though. Sorry about that. 😛

Hoot.

–Sin

50 of the Greatest Debut Novels Since 1950

This is a good list. I’ve read some of the books on this list, and they are excellent, and I’ve been hankering after some of the others, so I can safely assume that the rest are probably great too! Take a look 🙂

Flavorwire

For a reader, there’s something magical about picking up a first novel — that promise of discovery, the possibility of finding a new writer whose work you can love for years to come, the likelihood of semi-autobiography for you to mull over. The debut is even more important for the writer — after all, you only get one first impression. Luckily, there are a lot of fantastic first impressions to be had. In fact, the year’s best might have been published just this month. After the jump, check out some of the greatest first novels written since 1950 — some that sparked great careers, some that are still the writers’ best work, and some that remain free-standing (but hopefully not for long!). Don’t see your favorite debut here? Add it to the list in the comments.

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My October TBR and a HUGE announcement!

Err… The announcement is coming first. Just roll with it okay? Okay.

Okay, I have an announcement to make to all my numerous (splutter) readers. I will almost certainly be taking up booktubing. I’ve created my channel, I’ve obtained a nice-ish camera. (Dad’s old one) And I’ve readied all my social media accounts… One only minor thing left to do: Record.

I’m very self-conscious, and even though I love books and I love…talking, I’m terrified! I’ll get to it eventually. I’ve set myself a deadline for the end of my holidays, which is Oct 27th so it’s happening. Very soon. THIS MONTH. Gahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh.

-hyperventilates-

I’ll still keep blogging though, may be even more frequently than usual. Maybe. No promises, unfortunately. (Yes. I know. This is what one wants to hear from a blogger they follow. :P) I’m LOUSY at motivating myself to do anything. I need to work on that. I will. THAT’S a promise.

In other news, I’ve read a lot more books this year than I intended to. My goal for the year was 50 and I’ve read 77…so far. So around March, I decided to make certain months category months, like in March I only read Classics, and in July, I read only non-fiction. It broadened my horizons of reading and made me slow down a little.

My point is, is that October is going to be one of those months. This month I’m only going to read books by authors who are from India or the Indian Sub-continent. I looked through my shelves and I discovered than I have a lot of books by Indian/Pakistani authors that I haven’t read yet so I’ve decided to make a TBR for this month, based on how much I think I can read.

Here it is. (Strictly tentative, okay?)

Em and the Big Hoom by Jerry Pinto (Currently reading and LOVING)

Sacred Games by Vikram Chandra

The Wishmaker by Ali Sethi

Sea of Poppies by Amitav Ghosh

I’m also thinking of buying A Fine Balance by Rohinton Mistry.

I think this is all I can do because I’m also interning and Sacred Games is massive (947 pages)! If anybody has any suggestions, please let me know in the comments.

Thanks!

Hoot.

-Sin