Tag Archives: books

Books, dude

15 Oct

Jelly says: Books, dude. Just, just, books.

I am literally writing this so someone can talk in depth with me about fictional characters and how insignificant and infinitely beautiful our lives are. These are my favourite books and they hurt me inside in a pleasant way, like a bruise or a really intense back massage. You know what I’m talking about. Read these please
please

please

Building stories is an amazing graphic novel that comes in a box filled with pamphlets and leaflets and comic strips, not in any particular order, that build up the small and fractured lives of tenants in an apartment building. It is incredible how human life is so perfectly summed up in this.

Anything by Virginia Woolf, but start with Mrs Dalloway and then swiftly progress onto To The Lighthouse (my favourite). It is very readable and real from the very start as long as you believe her utterly.

Anything by Sylvia Plath. Her poetry is (dare I say it?) better than The Bell Jar, but since The Bell Jar is one of my favourite books ever, that is really saying something.

Wide Sargasso Sea, by Jean Rhys – it’s a take on Jane Eyre (which you should also read, btw) written by a awesome PoC lady in modernish times, told from the point of view of the mad wife. It’s intense in the best possible way.

Half of a Yellow Sun by Chimamanda Ngozi Adiche – amazing and worrysome- anything by Alexander McCall Smith – fabulous – anything (but especially The Labyrinth, a collection of essays, as well as Senor Vivo and the Coco Lord) by Louis de Bernieres, who is dark and curls around your ribs and makes you laugh.

The Cloud Atlas, Birdsong (which made me cry and think of terrible things), The True Deceiver by Tove Jansson (a lovely short novel about how people are not what we think they are), His Dark Materials series by Philip Pullman (omg so much better than the movie that I fall down and whimper about the beauty of the characters and also – best fricking love story ever fricking told frick my life), White Teeth by Zadie Smith (hnng people people people).

Lost at Sea is a graphic novel about growing older not up. Ghost World is about much the same thing, but is spine tingling and very funny. American Gods by Neil Gaiman. The Bloodstone Papers (about small lives and being Anglo-Indian and is written so evocatively), The God of Small Things (about love, about love, about love).

I also really like poetry, and I have lots of favourite poems and anthologies. To make this list I literally read of my bookshelf and typed the first thing that came to mind
Please tell me anything that you loved, will love, are loving right now, I have no money but I will get books by selling my clothes on the black market if need be.

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Fudge yeah books

9 Apr

Jelly speaking.

I read, probably (definitely) too much for my own good. When I am in school, a good deal of my brain power is spent wondering whether I can sneak a book under my desk. This has, understandably, gained me a reputation as nerd among my classmates and family, but popular culture now says nerds are cool, so I’m safe. Reading is definitely sexy.

It’s half term right now, and I know that I have spent a worrying proportion of it escaping from my friends and family trying to find a quiet place to read. Recently, however,  I’ve been reading more than Harry Potter and my ever-beloved Terry Pratchett. For the second time I’ve tried to read the classics that my book mad older sister and English teacher have passionately recommended to me, and I don’t know, this time round it clicked. Not everything, I grant you, but in the past couple of weeks I have devoured my first Woolf, tried George Eliot and read Jane Austen all over again.

It’s just something about another world and the feel of ink upon my questing eyeballs, where no-one can judge me and and I can think whatever I want to think. I’ve loved it since I was small. I like to learn subconsciously and to get that obscure reference or even make some of my own. I like it when you can talk anxiously about a book character with someone you hardly know and imagine them anyway you want. I like the way books can start wars or revolutions or make me cry or change somebody’s mind. I am a passionate advocate of the written word.

Just to annoy all of you book purists out there, I do own a Kindle, gifted to me by my parents. The greatest thing about it is probably the free/very cheap books. This means I can read loads of classics which I never would have bothered to buy otherwise. It still amazes me that you can buy the entirity of Charles Dickens for free! Books like To The Lighthouse, the Odessey, Pride and Prejudice (along with anything you can imagine which is a classic) are there at the click of a button. At the risk of sounding like a Amazon salesperson, honestly, it’s great.

I know that Lilipop doesn’t read as much anymore, because she is so insanely busy all of the time changing the world and creating sparkly rainbows, but we both still really enjoy ink and paper (or a Kindle screen) for the freedom it brings. Read. It is the greatest gift, which is why education is so important. I can’t imagine what my life would be like if I had been denied this skill because of my gender, or the colour of my skin, or my wealth. This is what I preach, people, and I pity the fool who doesn’t get it.

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