Friday, 29 January 2016

everyday post| Hibernation

One wouldn't believe it but January is almost gone. The time is such a strange ungraspable thing. Sometimes I have a sense that I only drew a new breath and the thing I have been looking forward to for so long is suddenly far behind me, do you know what I mean? Anyway I think that January was a really beautiful month. I spent a lot of time with my parents and my brother in Brno as well as in London. And I've discovered some new favorite authors like Deb Caletti and Janette Oke for I am very grateful. Then I've also found some new lovely places here in London where I go for an inspiration and joy. And finally I have had a lot of time to think about a bit of everything which has always been one of my favourite things to do. Well now, I didn't come to conclusion but I feel relaxed after all. I created a daily rituals such as reading in subway every morning, having long conversations with my parents every evening and visiting places around the river at least once a week. Loads of things happened but still it was very calm and pleasant month when I was going to bed late at night and was waking up in the late morning. After having a long hibernation I am ready for spring now. Which seems to be on its way.

Monday, 25 January 2016

Nezapomenutelná cesta

Original title: A Walk To Remember
Author: Nicholas Sparks
Translator: Ivana Jílovcová-Fieldová
Publisher: Ikar
Publishing date: 2015
Pages: 188

Landon Carter is kind of a bad boy. He isn't completely spoilt, nor very amiable, though. He hangs out with friends that want to be cool no matter what, and they have a bad influence about him. But then, under weird conditions, Landon goes to a date with a guarded Jamie Sullivan, the daughter of the town's Baptist minister. And by that time Landon starts to undergoing a big transformation of his character. After a long and challenging journey he might also begin to believe in miracles...

"There are moments when I wish I could roll back the clock and take all the sadness away,
but I have the feeling that if I did, the joy would be gone as well."

There are so many books I would die for. So many beautiful, inspiring and unforgettable books I've enjoyed from the beginning to the very end. Nevertheless, I have my favourite book that hasn't changed for years. And that book is A Walk to Remember by Nicholas Sparks. Even though I am completely sure you've known this fact already, I would like to talk about my favourite book a little bit more because I've never written an actual review about it.

"Jamie saved my life. She taught me everything. About life, hope and the long journey ahead.
I'll always miss her. But our love is like the wind. I can't see it, but I can feel it."

I wouldn't proclaim that I am extremely pathetic but there are two things that make me cry again and again. One of them is leave-taking with my parents and the other one is the book by Nicholas Sparks. I believe that yourselves certainly know how hard is to explain why you love what you love. But I promise I'll try to do my best to express my feelings about this book.

To start with A Walk to Remember was one of the first books I've ever read. Consequently, it is the story I would never forget and I've never quite gotten over what happened in it. Ten years ago, when I was fourteen and was reading this book for the first time, I was only vaguely acquainted with all of the life issues and I believed in nothing but happy endings. Therefore I saw things in completely different light when I finished this book. Absolutely nothing, neither I, was the same.

"It was, I remembered thinking, the most difficult walk anyone ever had to make.
In every way, a walk to remember."

This book literally broke my heart and yet I return to it over and over again. Because, in spite of the sad circumstances, it doesn't give me a pain or grief but hope and faith when I read it. This book means to me the same as the Holy Bible to Jamie which she had carried with her to everywhere. Nicholas Sparks wrote about unconditional love in this story that was inspired by his younger sister Danielle, and I would love to believe that such love truly does exist.

I am unconditionally in love with the story about Landon and Jamie and that's not gonna change. I might read some new book and it might become my favourite but it will never replace this book from the first place in my heart. A Walk to Remember is my favourite book and it always will be. It's consistent and enduring. It might not be the best book that was ever written but for me it doesn't matter. Only the feelings which the words by Nicholas Sparks evoke in me do count.

Ratings: 5/5

Tuesday, 19 January 2016

STAY

Author: Deb Caletti
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Publishing date: 2012
Pages: 313

When Clara beholds Christian, everything changes. They fall in love at instant moment and their relationship is very exquisite right from the beginning. Everything between them is perfect but then Christian starts to be afraid that he might loose what they have together because perfect things don't last. Nevertheless, his fear outgrow to an obsession which eventually leads to the very point he was so afraid of.

"Love must be more about power than we think, if even in its most intimate moments of expression we think about not being the one who risks the most."

I was induced to read this book by one booktuber. She has been talking about it for so many times that I was completely sure I had to read it. Well now, I wasn't expecting anything extraordinary but the book has totally surprised me. It actually is an exceptional book. Very well written and remarkable. And it came to me in the best moment possible. Because that story helped me to open my eyes. I needed it, you know, because I am in a huge foreign city, alone, and I am a bit too much dewy-eyed sometimes. Stay is about what can happen when you think you know someone by heart. You should know that you cannot even trust your heart if it comes to love. Let's just face it, we are crazy when we are in love...

"It's strange, isn't it, how that idea of belonging to someone can sound so great? It can be comforting, the way it makes things decided. We like the thought of being held, until it's too tight. We like that certainty, until it means there is no way out. And we like being his, until we realize we're not ours anymore."

I was reading this book every morning whilst traveling by subway to the center of the city as well as on the way back to home. And I was actually really looking forward to those moments spent between the pages. The story was very intense and even though it discussed a really dark side of love, it was beautiful and inspiring, too. The main character Clara had told the story of hers retrospectively and the bits and pieces of the past has been mingled with the present. Deb Caletti has written the story in such a stirring way that I almost forgot to get off the train most of time. And it was even funny sometimes so I didn't know exactly if I should to smile or be horrified of the things that had happend in the plot line. The author of this book has used lots of footnotes which was also very unique part of the story and made the reading experience quite spectacular, too.

"Fate is a shape-shifter. It is the kindest and most generous entity imaginable, laying out more goodness than a person deserves, and then it shrinks and curls and forms into something grotesque. You think something is one thing, but then it's another."

This was the first book by Deb Caletti I have ever read but now I know I must to read others by hers as soon as possible. I do have my favourite authors to whom I like to return again and again. But it always surprises me when I find some new favorites. The front cover of this book says that it is perfect for fans of Sarah Dessen. And you know that I am a huge fan of hers. I hadn't believed it, though, until I read it. Well now, I usually don't like to compare books and their authors but this time I have to agree with that affirmation. Deb Caletti has everything in her books that I adore about Sarah Dessen as well. There is emphasis on family and friendship. And there is always a certain enlightment that comes from their stories. Nevertheless, they are both diffrent anyway. I am just very happy for I have found another author that is so close to my heart...

Ratings: 5/5

Saturday, 16 January 2016

Theme on Saturday #32| I Love Big Books and I Cannot Lie


"But for my own part, if a book is well written,
I always find it too short."
(Jane Austen)

You know how much I love to write a blog about books but there is one thing that I really regret about it. Since I've started to write Bookish Friendship I haven't found a time to read big books. But I can remember times when I had been reading one book for a couple of weeks or when I had been stuck in a book series for months. I couldn't even think about reading anything else by that time. I grew fond of the characters and surroundings in that particular book and I just wouldn't want to leave it for a world. When I am now reading a book for a few days more, I feel like I am late which is ridiculous because reading is not a race, is it...?

I've always thought that sharing feelings about books is nice and fulfilling. And it really is but only until it's not a certain liability. A couple of weeks ago I've realized that I don't read books for myself any more. I do read them because of my blog. When I am walking through a bookshop and behold some new book, something like this comes to my mind: "Oh great, this looks very good, I should read it and write a review about it on my blog." Who knows, it might not occur to me to read that specific book if I wouldn't have a blog. Maybe I only think that my readers would be interested in it. And although I think it's a good thing that once upon a time my blog pushes me to read something that is totally out of my comfort zone, I don't think that reading books for anyone but myself is a good reason to read at all.

There is some sort of unceasing pressure about writing book reviews which I've given upon me. I feel like I should to write at least two book reviews for a month, and that these book reviews should be devoted to a varied literature genres. Unfortunately that means that I've stopped to read big books and book series because they would take me more time than I actually do have. I do not even have a time to re-reads my favourite books I've already written about on this blog. And it is really sad because I've always loved to read those multi-page books that gave me a company for a livelong days. And I don't want to give a farewell to my beloved Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë and other books I truly love. I haven't had a chance to sit down with the last book of Eragon series by Christopher Paolini for more than two years and yet I would love to know so badly how the story ends. So I've decided to slow down a little bit and start to read books for a pleasure itself - to rediscover the simple joy of reading without rushing and stressing myself. I'd like to embark to a seven-hundred-pages-long book by W. M. Thackeray and would not leave it until the very end of it. Because reading should be fun just as a writing blog about it should be, right...?

Wednesday, 13 January 2016

“The past is rich history. The present is sacred inscription. The future is yet to be written.”

After one whole week I am here with a new post in which I would like to talk about a little bit of everything. I have been planning to write this post at the beginning of this month but because of my moving to London after spending Christmas holidays at home I haven't found time till now. And besides I needed some time to realize that a new year has already started. The thing is that I always need some intermission between big moments. I actually need some dull and even boring days in my life to composed myself after those moments that bring great changes. And the last year was full of that great changes so I wanted to persevere in the last year a little while more...

Although I usually do have a sense that my life isn't changing so much, there are lots of changes that had happened during the last year. First of all I've started to read in English. And that makes me happy every day because I love English language. I love Czech language, too. But you know, it is a really messy language after all. There is some liberty in it, that's true, but I like that English has a system. It is orderly and neat. I enjoy the simplicity of English as well. You can say everything without saying too much. Moreover you can find every single book that was ever written in English. Consequently, my bookish horizons have extended which is the best thing about it...

The biggest change of all came when I moved from my parent's house. I've never been one of those kids that slander their parents. I truly love them and I am not ashamed for that. I am used to their every day company so it was really hard to leave them. And to make matters worse, I hadn't moved to another city but to abroad. But it's actually not that bad because we can call to each other a lot and our common time has became very precious to us. I think that our relationship is even stronger now...

This blog has also changed. I've started to write the posts in English and I do not post as frequently as I did sometime. But Bookish Friendship is important to me still the same, if not even more. I lost some of my readers because of the changes but I very appreciate those that have stayed with me no matter what. I hope you'll find my posts and book reviews inspiring in the year of 2016 thus you'll be coming back. Belatedly, but still I wish you a happy new year...

Tuesday, 5 January 2016

The Last Summer of the Death Warriors

Author: Francisco X. Stork
Publisher: Arthur A. Levine Books/Scholastic Inc.
Publication date: 2010
Pages: 344

Since his sister has died, the life of Pancho has narrowed to one point only. He wants nothing but to avenge her. Nevertheless, his plans are changed when he meets D.Q. A boy so different from anyone Pancho has ever encountered with. D.Q. became a Death Warrior when he has gotten ill with cancer. And he wants Pancho to be a Death Warrior as well. Their remarkable friendship will change both of them but what happen when they fall in love with the same girl...?

"We're two strands of the same rope.
Only the rope has three strands... It's all right for both of us to love her."

Francisco X. Stork is perfectly unique thereby he is a writer whose books always appeal to me even though they deal with those things I've never experienced by myself. I have nobody who would be suffering from cancer, who would lost his parents or siblings, neither I have someone who would be showing some signs of autism around me. But still those stories by Francisco X. Stork profoundly affect me.

There is no doubt that he is a great author. His writing style is brilliant yet easy to read. What is the most amazing about his books are the characters, though. They are truly exceptional. Their stories always teach me something important about life and love. There is something magical about that his books come to me in the time I need a new point of view the most. I've found myself perfectly composed and full of serenity when I read his books. I've learnt not to whine like D.Q. would said.

The Last Summer of the Death Warriors is a book that warms me to the marrow of the bones. It is really powerful and very inspirational read. It discusses some of the heavy themes but still it is fast pace and thrilling read you could not put it down. Francisco X. Stork understands to souls of young people. He is a great observer and he can express his thoughts perfectly. And that is what makes him such an excellent author.

Ratings: 5/5

Friday, 1 January 2016

TOP TEN BOOKS of 2015

The year of 2015 was full of really beautiful books, consequently it was quite hard for me to choose only ten of them. But when it came to emplacement, I was absolutely sure about to what point to put which one. I've never evaluated a book by the writing style only, the most important aspect has always been  the feeling that was evoked within me after reading it. In this post I would like to share the best of what I've read the past year. If you'll decide to read some of these books, I hope that you'll find them as impressive and inspiring as I do...

PS: If you're interested, you can click on the title of each book under the picture and find the whole review of it.

1. Anne of Green Gables - I am so glad I have finally found the time for reading this book by L. M. Montgomery. I wanted to read it for ages. I always knew that I was going to fall in love with this story and so I did. Anne and her colorful life at Green Gables was so charming and sweet and the reading about it was very entertaining...

2. Irises - This book, that Francisco X. Stork sent me three years ago, is one of the best I've ever read. The story discusses a very tough and hurting topic but it is written in a really gentle way that induce the most tender feeling within the reader's heart. It is a book I wouldn't forget...

3. How I Live Now - This book by Meg Rosoff I have decided to read because of the movie which stroke me really hard. But the book was even better than the screen play for the characters were so richly written. I grew fond of all of them and I've found reading about them very inspiring. This is the powerful story you definitely have to read...

4. Heidi - I wouldn't find so lovable character like Heidi in any of those books I've read through ages. It melted my heart when her cheerfulness return the love and joy into the heart of her grandfather. I was reading the story of hers in our garden and I had had a really splendid time...

5. The Truth About Forever - I love the books by Sarah Dessen and this one isn't the exception. It was sweet and lovely and beautifully written. When I was reading The Truth About Forever I was in love with the whole world. Sarah Dessen always makes me feel in this way and I absolutely adore it...

6. A Certain Age - I have surely never read such an astonishing book. The frankness of the author has really surprised me but it definitely was in a good way. It was quite strange experience of a reading because the book wasn't structured into chapters, then I had never found out the name of the main character and the ending was so open that it seemed like it was left unfinished. But I have to admit that the book was truly impressive and it hasn't left me untouched...

7. Rozlet Gemmy Hardyové / The Flight of Gemma Hardy - You know that I am a big fan of Jane Eyre and I am the kind of reader that wants to read everything connected with the story of hers. Margot Livesey wrote a very dashing book based on this classic story by Charlotte Brontë. It was fast read and I couldn't put it down although it wasn't as admirable as the original...

8. První dojmy / First Impressions - I would recommend this book by Charlie Lovett to everyone who loves Jane Austen. It is arresting and nicely written. I've found it really thrilling and even though the ending was quite husty, I think that it is a great book for every booklover...

9. Než jsem tě poznala / Me Before You - This book by Jojo Moyes is truly devastating. I was crying inconsolably almost a whole week after reading it. And even though I still can't understand to the decisions of the characters, I really like this book. I would recommend it to you for it has a lot to say...

10. Kdo chytá v žitě / The Catcher in the Rye - Holden is an unforgettable character and I completely fell under his spell. I adored the way in which he was talking. It was coarse and funny but still somewhat profound. I liked the writing style of J. D. Salinger and I found myself between his words. It was like he was writing about me as well as about Holden or at least I had had that feeling while reading it...