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There are books and there are books out there.

Funny how sometimes a certain book is included in the list of classics but when you attempt to read it, you can’t relate. One such book I really wanted to finish is The Name of the Rose by Umberto Eco. I started a few chapters only to abandon it again. Readers rated it five stars on Goodreads but how come I could not finish even five chapters? The proverbial question is, is it me or is it the book?  I love history, I admire those writers who really make those researches when writing a historical book.  Those Latin phrases really turned me off. A few months ago, I attempted to include Anna Karenina in my book challenge for this year but I gave up reading in the middle of the book. Russian names are hard to pronounce, haha.  Got confused by the story.  I finished reading  Doctor Zhivago though by Boris Pasternak. I  even watched some trailers on YouTube and enjoyed listening to Lara’s Theme. Another book that I started years ago but still pending in my TBR list is A Prayer for Owen Meany. This book got more five stars on Goodreads. A Widow For One Year  is another Irving book that is pending in my shelf.

Are you a fan of Gabriel Garcia Marquez? We used to have two trade books of his in our small library which Nissa bought years ago, Love In The Time of Cholera and One Hundred Days of Solitude.  I enjoyed the latter but could not finish the former. I wonder why.  Enough of  Florentino Ariza and Fermina Daza. Do you remember that famous film by Meryl Streep entitled Julie and Julia? I  enjoyed watching the film version but didn’t finish the book with the same title  by Julie Powell, a food blogger. Another book Eat, Pray, Love  is prominently displayed in my shelf but the first few chapters were a disappointment to me. Maybe one of these days, I’ll read Elizabeth Gilbert.  Maybe I’ll give the book another try.

I am presently reading  The Winter Siege by Ariana Franklin,  a book set in 12th century England.  A wonderful historical book. In 1141, England was engulfed in civil war between King Stephen and his cousin, the Empress Matilda over who would wear the crown.  This book is so engrossing. This is my book number 162 out of a goal of reading 150 books this year.

What are you reading at the moment?

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I was suddenly reminded of this lovely children’s book while perusing my shelves on authors beginning with “W”. Pete, a friend here  on  WordPress has just ended his posts on alphabetical listings of books and authors.

Charlotte’s Web.

I was not really that familiar with the story until my kids were growing up and we stacked on children’s books to read every night before they went to sleep.

One is never too old to appreciate a good book.

E.B. White is the same author of the more familiar  Stuart Little  novel  which was adapted into a movie not too long ago. Charlotte’s Web is a story of Wilbur, a little pig and Charlotte,  a spider. It is a story of friendship, life, love and death. It’s full of lessons that we could all learn from.

There are several inspiring quotes from Charlotte’s Web, words of wisdom from a child’s book of fairy tales.

“Why did you do all this for me?’ he asked. ‘I don’t deserve it. I’ve never done anything for you.’ ‘You have been my friend,’ replied Charlotte. ‘That in itself is a tremendous thing.”

“I wove my webs for you because I liked you. After all, what’s a life, anyway? We’re born, we live a little while, we die. A spider’s life can’t help being something of a mess, with all this trapping and eating flies. By helping you, perhaps I was trying to lift up my life a trifle. Heaven knows anyone’s life can stand a little of that.”

“And then, just as Wilbur was settling down for his morning nap, he heard again the thin voice that had addressed him the night before.
“Salutations!” said the voice.
Wilbur jumped to his feet. “Salu-what?” he cried.
“Salutations!” repeated the voice.
“What are they, and where are you?” screamed Wilbur. “Please, please, tell me where you are. And what are salutations?”
“Salutations are greetings,” said the voice. “When I say ‘salutations,’ it’s just my fancy way of saying hello or good morning.”

“It is not often that someone comes along who is a true friend and a good writer.”

This is just as good as another children’s book, The Velveteen Rabbit which my kids and I love.

 

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Last night, I received this precious badge from Goodreads together with this lovely message:

Congrats!
You have read 150 books of your goal of 150!”

Almost nine months and I am done. It was nice to discover new authors whose  books were just as lovely as those I have read before. It was nice to discover new places.  It was just lovely to add more books on my shelves and on my tab.  I was even on a quandary what book to read last but I finally settled on Palladian.  I was reminded of the book Jane Eyre at the outset.  Palladian was first published in 1946, more than ten years before I was born.  Much as there are negative reviews on the book, the positive ones far outweigh them. Such poetic prose,  a string of words that warms the heart.  Summaries and various reviews are posted on Goodreads,  that is, if you have time to visit the site.

Hoping I could find more lovely books to read, reread those books that inspired me over the years, discover more memoirs, poems and fiction in the process.

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Honestly, I didn’t know there is such a thing as this. a special day celebrated for book lovers. All these years I was not aware of it until a friend on Facebook forwarded this lovely  photo from Chicken Soup for the Soul. It was celebrated yesterday. Today, in our country, it’s already August 10.

How nice to celebrate a special day for books and readers alike. I love this photo. it shows the beauty of having books around with maybe a hot cup of coffee or tea on a rainy day.

Cicero surely was thinking of me  🙂  when he said these words.  Garden and books, two things I both love.  How I wish I really have a small room for a library but all I have are several shelves for our accumulated books over the years. My daughter is a book nerd, she used to buy series of publications when she was here. I remember a complete set of the Harry Potter series, all hardbound copies which she reserved  at National Book Store when they were out in the market. I remember watching the movie adaptations with my kids.  Remember  Hunger Games, a trilogy of young adult dystopian novels written by the novelist Suzanne Collins? She also has hard-bound copies of  Stephanie Meyer’s books  Twilight. I haven’t read them, I am not fond of vampire stories and werewolves.

By the way, I am done with 145 books for my Goodreads’ 2017 Reading Challenge.  Five more books to go,  yahoo 🙂 I lately finished another memoir by Frances Mayes, author of the lovely book Under the Tuscan Sun . Under Magnolia is all about her coming of age, her growing up years in  Fitzgerald, Georgia. I love the photos inside the book.  It made me think of how she looked like when she was younger.

Though it’s late, I want to wish you all Happy Book Lovers Day.

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It’s a cloudy day for a Monday morning and it’s still dark outside. I hope I’ll be able to finish trimming our carabao grass this afternoon if it doesn’t rain.

I’ve browsed lately and read Lucy Torres’ articles  in the national daily Philippine Star.  She is a congresswoman from Ormoc City  in the south and a celebrity in her own right. She has a byline  almost every  Sunday and I read it online. I have read her  writings for a number of years  now and I like how she shares her life with her actor husband Richard Gomez and their only child Juliana. Time and again I’ll blog about her. I’ve found her old posts and she recommended a certain author by the name of Ruth  Reichl.  Ruth is an author on various books on food.  Lucy recommended  three of Ruth’s best-selling memoirs on food entitled  Tender at the Bone, Comfort Me With Apples and Garlic and Sapphires.  I read the summaries at Goodreads and all the three books have four stars each.  I wish I could find copies on my next foray at Booksale. I love memoirs.  I am presently reading another memoir of Francis Mayes called Under Magnolia. If you remember she is also the author of that lovely book Under The Tuscan Sun which was adapted into a film that I watched twice on tv.  I have several books on my  “currently reading list”. When I start one and couldn’t get into the story all that much, I look for another…haha!

Don’t you just love being curled under white sheets with a hot cup of coffee or tea while reading?  Don’t you just love finding titles and discovering new authors? Ah, the beauty of being a senior citizen, some wonderful days just spent reading and enjoying every minute.

What book is on your night table? Are you fond of reading too?

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Have you ever associated scents with particular events in your life?

I do sometimes. You remember because of it. It seems as though that event just happened yesterday and you reminisce with a smile.

Just finished reading a book  called Piper, Once and Again by Caroline E. Zani. It’s my 115th read out of the 150 books I committed  to finish by the end of the year.  There is that feeling of happiness inside when a book you did not expect to enjoy is just one nice read from beginning to end.  I have always been fascinated with the subject of soul mates, that there is someone out there for you long before you were born into this world.  I don’t know, maybe there is some truth to it or just figments of imagination.

I found this lovely introductory video uploaded by the author on YouTube. There are books and there are books out there ,  but when the memory lingers, you smile at the thought and you remember the story.

The joy of reading, the joy of finding something that touches your heart to the core.

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I had a good short chat with my doctor today.  I told him I am a survivor. He asked how long ago it was. He told me to forget about it. I have survived more than five years. What is important is that I am well now. Yes, I said. Health is wealth. He advised me to avoid stress as much as possible because it is the number one cause of illness. I do agree. It’s a good thing my blood pressure is now normal and my blood sugar has been consistently normal for the past four months since my first visit the last week of  January. I have to keep on the maintenance though, it’s for life.  He said to always be happy and look on the brighter things. Everyone of us has problems to overcome.

I suddenly remember one of our favorite topics before on our page at Facebook. Which is more important, the journey or the destination?  The journey would always be difficult somehow but then there is a certain kind of joy when we reach our destination. Maybe our attitude towards reaching our dreams counts a lot.The road maybe sometimes rough and treacherous but we carry on. We want to take a glimpse of what lies ahead.

Can’t believe it. My son is turning thirty-three tomorrow.  Seems like only yesterday when we would walk together to the next street in our subdivision, he, to go to school and I, to wait for my FX service in going to work.  We had adopted this ritual of listening to a fifteen minute Bible reading and reflections in one of the FM stations on radio by a Dominican priest.  It was aptly called The Sounds of the Soul. Along the way, we would discuss what we heard and learned. Those were the days that I miss.  The program is gone now replaced by morning news. Until now, my son and I still go together to attend mass on Sundays. Sometimes,  he attends one in the morning with me and one in the evening with his girlfriend.  He never forgets our Sunday obligation.  Looking forward to a simple birthday celebration. He’ll be on vacation leave for a few days.

I am into memoirs now, a two-series books by Susan Cutsforth, a journey of taking risks, living an extraordinary life in a town somewhere in France. I can’t help but compare the writings with that of Peter Mayle’s trilogy, memoirs about his stay in Provence. I love the latter’s works. He is a British author

How was your weekend?

 

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