Books

Book-Tube-A-Thon TBR 2017

This year the BookTube-A-Thon is taking place from July 24th – July 30th.

All information can be found here (Youtube) and here (Website).
Let’s get on with it.
Here are the books I will try to read next week. I have to say, it’s a very ambitious TBR because I’m working full-time… But we’ll see how it goes.
Challenge 1: A book with people on the cover
The Hurricane Party – Klas Östergren (buy)
the hurricane party klas ostergren
Lots and lots of people on this cover.
Hanck Orn’s son is dead. When they come to the door they tell him it was a heart attack, but he knows they are lying. So he travels to the archipelago at the outermost reaches of the land to find out what really happened. He lands on an island and is met by a young woman, hair streaked with blood, raving like a lunatic. She is one of the sisters, who tell him the story of how his son died in the great hall of the Clan, the Norse gods, who were holding a party. But the festivities soon got out of hand, the guests began to argue with one another, and the mischievous shapeshifter Loki dealt a deadly blow. Set in a dystopian future that recalls Orwell and Zamyatin, Klas Östergren has weaved a dizzying story of magnificent scope and foul play. Moving from the golden halls to the depths of the underworld, it is about one man’s search for justice for his son in a world on the brink.
Challenge 2: Read a hyped book
Our Endless Numbered Days – Claire Fuller (buy)
our endless numbered days claire fuller
This has been everywhere on YouTube for a while so I’m counting this as my hyped book.
1976: Peggy Hillcoat is eight. She spends her summer camping with her father, playing her beloved record of The Railway Children and listening to her mother’s grand piano, but her pretty life is about to change.

Her survivalist father, who has been stockpiling provisions for the end which is surely coming soon, takes her from London to a cabin in a remote European forest. There he tells Peggy the rest of the world has disappeared.

Her life is reduced to a piano which makes music but no sound, a forest where all that grows is a means of survival. And a tiny wooden hut that is Everything.

Challenge 3: Read a book in one day
The Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy – Douglas Adams (buy)
the hitchhiker's guide to the galaxy douglas adams
A short and fun book. Can’t believe I haven’t picked this up yet.
On 12 October 1979 the most remarkable book ever to come out of the great publishing corporations of Ursa Minor (and Earth) was made available to humanity – The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. It’s an ordinary Thursday lunchtime for Arthur Dent until his house gets demolished. The Earth follows shortly afterwards to make way for a new hyperspace bypass and his best friend has just announced that he’s an alien. At this moment, they’re hurtling through space with nothing but their towels and an innocuous-looking book inscribed with the big, friendly words: DON’T PANIC. The weekend has only just begun…
Challenge 4: Read a book where the main-character is different from you
Maus – Art Spiegelman (buy)
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Different from me in that this story takes place during the Second World War and it’s told in a specific way with cats and mice.
Maus I: A Survivor’s Tale and Maus II – the complete story of Vladek Spiegelman and his wife, living and surviving in Hitler’s Europe. By addressing the horror of the Holocaust through cartoons, the author captures the everyday reality of fear and is able to explore the guilt, relief and extraordinary sensation of survival – and how the children of survivors are in their own way affected by the trials of their parents.
Challenge 5: Read a book outdoors
Makkelijk leven – Herman Koch
makkelijk leven herman koch
You may know him from “The Dinner”, “Summer House with Swimming Pool” and “Dear mr. M.”. Makkelijk Leven or ‘Easy Life” is a little book he wrote as a book-day-present. I don’t think it has been translated though… but it’s veeeeery short 😉
Tom Sanders writes popular self-help books. His books “Crime without borders” and “Easy Life” have sold over 40 million copies. He leads a comfortabel life with his wife Julia and two grown-up sons of which Stefan – his youngest- is his favourite.
During Julia’s birthday party, they get a visit from Hanna, Stefan’s girlfriend, on whom Tom and Julia are not too keen. She tells them how Stefan has hit her and how it was not the first time. Does Tom address the issue? Can he find a way to talk to his son based on his own self-help books?
Challenge 6: A book you bought for the cover
The Burial (new title: The Untold) – Courtney Collins (buy)
the burial courtney collins
I had never heard of this book but it looked amazing so I bought it… I don’t normally do that but look at it. It’s so beautiful!
It is 1921. In a mountain-locked valley, Jessie is on the run.
Born wild and brave, by twenty-six she has already lived life as a circus rider, horse and cattle rustler, and convict. But on this fateful night she is just a woman wanting to survive though there is barely any life left in her.
Two men crash through the bushland, desperate to claim the reward on her head: one her lover, the other the law.
But as it has always been for Jessie, it is death, not a man, who is her closest pursuer and companion. And while all odds are stacked against her, there is one who will never give up on her—her own child, who awaits her.
Challenge 7: Read seven books
Heldere Hemel – Tom Lanoye
heldere hemel tom lanoye
Officially the shortest book I have on my shelf. So perfect for a read-a-thon..
Based on true events. During The Cold War, a Russian Sovjet fighter plane crashes in a small Belgian village. A small event on a global scale but it has a massive impact on one family.
Well, wish me luck!
Are you participating in the Book-Tube-A-Thon?
What are you reading?
Top 5 Wednesday T5W
#T5W

Top 5 Wednesday: Non-Written Novels I want to get to soon

This week’s Top 5 Wednesday was a difficult one for me hence why I changed it a bit.

I’m a bit embarrassed to say that I haven’t actually read any graphic novels or manga, or at least nothing that I could recommend here. I do have one comic book series that I absolutely loved but it’s only available in Dutch. It’s a re-imagination of a comic books series called ‘Suske en Wiske’, which has been running since forever. I think you would call them Spike and Suzy. The new version is a series called Amoras and I thought it was really impressive how they used the old characters and made them more modern while still maintaining their original self. The drawings aren’t bad either 😉

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It’s very violent though, let’s say it’s an adult version of the original comic books.
Extra information (in Dutch) here.

This being the only one I can truly talk about, I changed the original topic “Favorite non-written novels” to “Non-written novels I want to get to soon”. I hope you don’t mind.

  • Maus – Art Spiegelman

This book has been sitting on my shelf for soooooo long. I’ll just have to set my mind to it and read it in one go or I’ll never read it at all. In case you don’t know what it’s about, this is Art Spiegelman interviewing his father who tells him about his experiences as a Polish Jew and Holocaust survivor.
Even my husband has read it (and he doesn’t read a lot) so I should really, really pick it up.

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  • The Arrival – Shaun Tan

I’m not sure where I first heard about The Arrival but it caught my attention instantly. This book is a wordless graphic novel.  (So definitely non-written, perfect for this topic!) It’s a story of immigration, of leaving everything behind to build a better life for yourself and your family.
I mean, just look at it. Isn’t it beautiful?

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  • The Harry Potter audiobooks

To switch it up a little, let’s talk about Harry Potter. I would love to listen to the audiobooks. The ones narrated by Stephen Fry. I like his voice and I like the stories so there’s no way I would end up not liking it, right? But when do you listen to audiobooks? It’s like I’ve never found the time. It takes me fifteen minutes to get to work, I’m never ‘on the road’ and just sitting there at home, listening.. it just feels weird to me. Maybe that’s because I haven’t tried it yet. I’ve thought about listening to the radioplay of Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman too…
If you listen to audiobooks, when do you listen to them? And which ones would you recommend?

  • This one summer – Mariko & Jillian Tamaki

Back to the graphic novels! I’m not sure if I’ve ever mentioned that my best friend from home and I have been setting up some little projects. She draws and I write and can I just say that I think she’s great at what she does. Let me show you one of the drawings she did for a series of Christmas cards we made:

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You can follow her on Instagram, it would really make her day 🙂

So why am I telling you this? I’ve been thinking about sending “This one summer” to Heleen as a little bookpresent. I think she would like it. That was quite the segway, wasn’t it.

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This is the story of two girls who always spend their summer together (kind of like Heleen and I used to do). As they are growing up, they discover boys but also that life is not always easy.
Based on the descriptions I’ve read, I think I’ll really enjoy this story. I’ll keep you posted!

  • Adulthood is a myth – Sarah Andersen

Last but not least, I wanted to include some Sarah Andersen. I’ve been following her for a while now and I always feel so connected to her comics.

sarah-andersen_comic

Yup, that’s me…

She has a collection of her work out now in book-form. So I’ll just have to pick that one up, won’t I?

What are some of your favorite alternative ways of reading?
Are you a graphic novel person? Do you prefer manga?
What are some audiobooks you would recommend?

Lot’s of love

Ellen

 

Random

Blogmas Day 2: My Christmas TBR

I don’t normally plan TBR’s but I thought I would do one for this month. Being unemployed also means extra reading time when I’m not going on interviews or searching the world-wide web for job openings.

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Extra reading time means that I feel obliged to work my way through some of the books that have been on my shelf for a while, along with some that I really want to read.

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I probably won’t finish all of these books but they are the ones I want to read during my Blogmas adventure.

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First of there is ‘Jane Eyre‘ by Charlotte Brontë. There are two reasons for putting this book on my list:

1) It’s been sitting on my bookshelf for three years now, I bought it for our wedding. We used books for the seating arrangements..
2) Sanne from @booksandquills is doing #JaneEyreWeek on YouTube. So you might want to check her channel for a whole lot of Jane Eyre goodness. Even if you’re reading this in the future, you should still go and subscribe to her because she is a-ma-zing!! I adore her, not just because she speaks Dutch like me, but also because her video content is always on point.

These two reasons made it unavoidable and I’m actually looking forward to reading this book.
In case you didn’t know, this is what the book is about:
After a lonely and simply tragic childhood, Jane finds work as a governess at Thornfield Hall. There she meets the darkly fascinating Mr Rochester. But Thornfield also holds a secret!

Ooooooh.. suspense 😉

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Secondly there’s ‘The Tales of Beedle the Bard‘ by J.K. Rowling.
This little book contains five fairy tales, with commentary and notes by Albus Dumbledore. It’s a short read with only 105 pages. It was released along with Fantastic beasts and where to find them and Quidditch through the ages (I only own this one, I’ll buy the others too one day).

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Next on the list is ‘Fangirl‘ by Rainbow Rowell, this must have been one of the most talked-about books of the last year (maybe even two years). I have written fanfiction in the past and I still love to read it. I think I’ll find a lot of myself in this book. I really hope I’ll like it. I don’t want to be disappointed!

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I’m 1/3 of the way through ‘Winter’s Tale‘ by Mark Helprin. I have been loving the writing so far but I had to put it down for a while and read something else because it was a bit much. The book is over 700 pages so a big book. I’m not planning on finishing this before Christmas but I want to keep on reading little bits every once in a while. Maybe I’ll finish it before spring arrives.

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And last but not least there is ‘Maus‘ by Art Spiegelman, a graphic novel about the Second World War where the Jews are mice and the Nazis are cats. I’m on page 78 of the 295 and I’m intrigued. The idea is simple but the story that’s being told is a though one. Art Spiegelman tells us the true story of what happened to his father during the war. He gives you the complete history, not just what happened on the frontlines but also the story of the people who were left behind and the time leading up to the war.
It’s too soon to give you my thoughts on this book, once I finish it, I’ll give you a full review.

That’s what I plan on reading during the next couple of weeks.
What are you reading?

Love

Ellen