Happy World Book Day! On this day, buy a book from a bookstore or give a book to a friend, family member, or light/non-reader; read and relax and find new adventures; anything and everything relating to books, do it!
For my birthday I received several gift cards to my bookstore (that I of course immediately used and violated my resolution to read five books before purchasing one more) and an amazing gift from a dear friend.
Porcelain Keys by Sarah Beard was one of those books that just called to me. Just like CJ Redwine’s Defiance and Sharon Biggs Waller’s A Mad, Wicked Folly stared at me from the shelves at work — and I tried to avoid them for days, weeks, months — this book stared at me, taunting me. The cover is really pretty, and because the title alone is a reference to music and piano, I had to grab it. Within the first 20 pages, I was hooked. So now I own it, and can read it entirely soon!
Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein is a book I’m ashamed I haven’t read yet, and have seen so many raving reviews! Plus, WWII books have always enticed me, so I can’t wait to begin this one.
Out of the Easy by Ruta Sepetys is a book that, when it was first published, I wasn’t sure if it was for me. But as time wore on, the story, the awards, the reviews, and even Sepetys herself (come on, if she can write Between Shades of Gray then clearly she can write anything) convinced me that I need this book. I’m glad I’ve purchased the paperback — I think the cover is much prettier, and as you know I’m all about aesthetics.
Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell I should’ve read ages ago. I grabbed this book so many times on lunch breaks and was completely stunned at how…similar, too similar, I am to Cath’s obsessions. I’m an open fangirl, and have been since I was 10, on Harry Potter. And as an adult I’m still very much a fangirl in other things, like TV shows or book series. But I have to admit, I was nervous to read this book (let alone buy it) because of those similarities. Odd? I know. But my friend Cara convinced me that every fangirl should read this book because it’s like looking into a mirror and facing one’s fears. I trust Cara’s judgement.
The Daring Ladies of Lowell by Kate Alcott because, come on, I enjoyed it and I can add it with my other Kate Alcott book!
The next book was a gift from a friend. We’ve worked together for over a year now, and have become incredibly close ridiculously fast since about this time last year. Our conversations flourished shortly after I mentioned my thesis topic. After months of literary, philosophical, musical, historical, political, and humorous discussions, suddenly we became best friends. It’s not a proper, enjoyable work day if the other isn’t around. Don’t you love those friendships? I sure do.
If you followed my blog starting roughly this time last year, you would’ve noticed a trend in my book reviews: young adult, dark, mysterious, creepy, frightening stuff. It was a never-ending stream of terrifying yet brilliant YA Gothic books — and so you may have guessed my graduate thesis revolves around Gothic literature. And if you know anything about Gothic literature, you’d know that The Monk is one of the most celebrated Gothic works, frequently referred to because it was one of the first Gothic novels to be written, published, and create quite a sensation among the public (so much so, even Jane Austen’s characters discuss it in Northanger Abbey — not-so-coincidentally my favorite Austen novel).
The Monk was published in 1796, and in this “Gothic romance” the monk explores all sorts of transgressions. He’s lustful, murderous, incestuous — all those bad things the Church frowns upon. He gives in to temptation, and it takes him down a wild path. It’s all about sexual desire, how power can corrupt, and it sparked such drama in the public that it still remains popular today.
This is a genuine 1830 edition of the first volume of The Monk! All marked, torn, tattered, and faded. It even smells wonderful, that hint of vanilla within the musty scent of old pages. On the inside of the cover is a signature, a Mrs JL Dyer, who must have been the first owner of this book. Makes me want to know her own history, why she purchased it (or who purchased it for her), and what she thought. Alas, at that time, women lost their names to men and this Mrs. Dyer may not ever be found. But wouldn’t it be fun?
What did you do for World Book Day? Any exciting books you received or gave away?
9 thoughts on “World Book Day // Birthday Gifts”
I want to read Out of the Easy as well, you’ll have to let me know how it is.
I agree with your friend’s judgement of Fangirl. I’m a HP fangirl myself, though now recovering with adulthood and less free time. I know I was like Cath in high school and it was refreshing to see an author address people with that level of dedication to reading. It’s not something many people are talking about. I’m glad you’re giving it a try.
Exactly! It’s almost as if talking about fanfiction is/was taboo…maybe the root of my fear was reading a book that openly addresses that aspect of fangirling. But I’m diving in now and can’t wait.
I hope you enjoy these books! I enjoyed Fangirl, though I preferred Attachments. While I have an interest in fan fiction–from a legal perspective–I think the fact that I don’t write it (so far) limited my ability to identify with Cath. I did like the characters, though, and I think Rowell really understands the awkwardness of young love.
Is Attachments the one with email chains?
I wrote fanfiction when I was younger, but there is certainly something to be said about the forms of fangirling one can take on: there’s an online community, and a RL community.
Yes, it is. I really liked it. It’s an interesting set up that serves as a warning for anyone who thinks their work email is private!
Oooooo — looks like that’ll be next on my Rowell list!
I hope you like it!
Aww yeah I was mentioned in one of your blog posts! I’m honored. And yes, you should read Attachments! I reviewed it on my tumblr last semester and I think you liked and/or commented on it. Code Name Verity is an awesome read; I’m so excited to give it away at World Book Night this year.
Yeah girl, now you’re extra famous! 🙂
I do remember that, you are my Rowell reference.