Literary Pilgrimages

I am a pilgrim, a wayfarer, an adventurer.  I am a sojourner, making my way through lands real and imagined.  I travel by multiple mediums.  My feet carry me across continents familiar and strange.  My imagination soars through the minds and hearts of people who have gone before, ferried by the pages of a book.

 

I am a reader.  I am an explorer.  Sometimes, the two combine and I become a pilgrim.

Merriam Webster dictionary defines a pilgrim as “one who journeys in foreign lands”.  Traditionally, pilgrims journey towards a sacred, often religious place.  One of the most famous pilgrimages in literature is Chaucer’s band of characters telling tales on the road to the cathedral in Canterbury.

I am a lover of pilgrimages.  My journeys, however, are literary in nature.  In them, I travel to a place that holds bookish significance–the house or grave of a writer, the location of a beloved text, the place that inspired a famous text. Continue reading

Inbox // Outbox 1/9/16

Inbox:

The Light Between Oceans by M.L. Stedman

I’m halfway through the audiobook version of this and am doing my best to withhold judgement until the end.  I really WANT to like this book.  I just don’t know if I can.  The historical aspects are really enjoyable, but a couple of the main characters get on my nerves.  Plus, the reader is annoying–his voice trails off at the end of sentences and is hard to hear.

Saving Hamlet by Molly Booth

This was a fluffy, fun YA read.  Theater kid, Emma, suddenly finds herself promoted to Stage Manager in what is on track to become the worst production of Hamlet ever to grace the high school stage.  One evening, she trips and falls through the auditorium stage’s trap door and finds herself enlisted as an assistant at the Globe Theater in London… in 1601.  There’s not a lot of depth here, but my not-so-inner literature nerd loved all the Shakespeare.

Wayfarer by Alexandra Bracken

Bracken’s first book, Passenger, didn’t blow me away.  There have been quite a few YA novels about time-traveling pirates released lately and none of them have been as satisfying as I wanted them to be.  Still, I’m intrigued enough to keep going and hope to get to this in the next week or so.  (Probably when I finish the Hamlet book).

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Outbox:

Continue reading

Ten Books I Wouldn’t Mind Santa Leaving Under My Tree

  1. The Princess Saves Herself in This One by Amanda Lovelace
  2. All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr
  3. The Sun is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon
  4. Personality Types: Using the Enneagram for Self-Discovery by Riso & Hudson
  5. Finding God in the Waves by Mike McHargue
  6. Difficult Women by Roxane Gay
  7. Of Other Worlds: Essays and Stories by C.S. Lewis
  8. Pilgrim at Tinker Creek by Annie Dillard
  9. The Man Born to Be King by Dorothy Sayers
  10. Traveling Mercies by Anne Lamott

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Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly link-up hosted at The Broke and the Bookish

Check out my biweekly book Inbox//Outbox

For more of my bookish adventures, add me on Goodreads!

Inbox // Outbox 12/19/16

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The Magician’s King by Lev Grossman

I recently finished the first of Grossman’s trilogy (see below for more) and immediately moved on to the second.

My True Love Gave to Me: Twelve Holiday Stories

Christmas short stories by all my favorite YA authors?  YES, PLEASE.

Watchmen by Alan Moore

I’m on the cusp of a graphic novel binge and what kind of reader would I be if I skipped out on what is heralded as the greatest of the genre?  I’ve been hearing amazing things about this book for years.  Will it live up to the hype?  I’m about to find out.

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Inbox // Outbox 12/5/16

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Something in Between by Melissa de la Cruz

I’m really intrigued by this book because it’s about an extremely driven girl who, after winning a competitive national scholarship, finds out that she’s an illegal immigrant.  I’m a few pages in and, while I don’t find the protagonist’s voice super compelling at this point, am eager to keep reading.

This Day: New and Collected Sabbath Poems 1979 – 2012 by Wendell Berry

I just got this collection in the mail and can’t wait to sink my teeth in.  I’m currently working my way through the complete works of W.B. Yeats, reading a few poems every morning.  This is my next project.

The Magicians by Lev Grossman

I checked this one out of the library on a whim.  The reviews on Goodreads aren’t amazing, but several of my friends have given it high rankings… so I’ll see how it goes.

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Outbox:

The Girl You Left Behind by Jojo Moyes

I listened to this one on audiobook during my commute.  I found the composition of the book jarring.  Moyes jumps between two time periods, linking two stories together.  While I liked the two stories, the linking felt forced.  Also, the trial at the end goes on for WAY too long.

Second Chance Summer by Morgan Matson

I’ve been tearing through Matson’s novels over the past couple of months.  This one fits the genre of YA summer romance perfectly, but is no less enjoyable for it.

Humans of New York: Stories by Brandon Stanton

Stanton’s book is a collection of pictures and quotes from his Facebook page, Humans of New York.  I’ve been a fan of his work for quite a while.  What I loved about seeing the stories in book form was the way that so many of them linked together.  It captures the diversity of what it is to be human while tying us all together.  While we all are different, on a deep level, we are all the same.

Eligible by Curtis Sittenfeld

I’ve heard good things about Sittenfeld’s modern day retelling of Pride & Prejudice.  I read the book in one sitting in the car and, while entertained, wasn’t blown away.  I liked some of the innovations, but a lot of the modern equivalents didn’t feel weighty enough.  Also, I didn’t actually LIKE any of the characters.

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My next Inbox // Outbox will be on December 19

For more of my bookish adventures, add me on Goodreads!

Inbox // Outbox: November 28, 2016

I continue to surge through my reading lists and here is a bit of what I’ve recently covered and what I’m reading next.

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Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell

An old favorite… I’m usually drawn to it at least once every year.  This year, I’m listening to it on audiobook during my commute.  Rowell is one of my favorite YA authors and this book brings back so much.  As a former fan fiction author, I deeply relate with Cath’s obsession with fictional worlds.  Her journey through her first year of college brings me back to my own lonely, often miserable time as a freshman. Continue reading

Inbox//Outbox: November 7, 2016

Since becoming a librarian, my book intake has dramatically increased.  From new access to YA titles as soon as they’re released to audiobooks on my commute to bags of fantasy titles from donations… I’m consuming the written word faster than I can write about it.  Occasionally, I’m able to do full reviews in my On the Shelf series, but those have become few and far between.

I’m excited to present a new feature: Inbox//Outbox!  My goal is to make a two lists and post them every other week: Books I’m about to begin and books I’ve recently finished.  I hope this will be a fun way to talk about the different things I’m reading in a way that isn’t as time-consuming as writing a full review. Continue reading

Top Ten Books in Worlds Not Our Own

This week’s theme for Top Ten Tuesday is to generate a list of books that take place on X.  I decided that X would be worlds that are not Earth.  Here we go…

  1. Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien
  2. Song of the Lioness Quartet by Tamora Pierce
  3. Symphony of Ages trilogy by Elizabeth Haydon
  4. Mistborn trilogy by Brandon Sanderson
  5. Green Rider series by Kristen Britain
  6. Evermen Saga by James Maxwell
  7. The Silmarilion by J.R.R. Tolkien
  8. Perelandra by C.S. Lewis*
  9. A Song of Ice and Fire series by George R.R. Martin**
  10. Heralds of Valdemar series by Mercedes Lackey

Continue reading

Top Ten Tuesday: Fictional Couples

It’s a rewind week for Top Ten Tuesday, which is when you can go back and revisit a topic that’s been done before.  Because I’ve only been participating for a short while, there are years of content to chose from.

I’ve selected a topic from 2010 featuring my favorite fictional couples in books.  I’m a sucker for a well-written romance, especially since they don’t come along that often.  It was fun thinking about all these characters again and remembering why I started shipping them in the first place. Continue reading

Top Ten Tuesday: Giftcard Me Up

Ten Books You’d Buy Right This Second If Someone Handed You A Fully Loaded Gift Card

  1. Hermione Granger Saves the World–Essays on the Feminist Heroine of Hogwarts  edited by Christopher E. Bell
  2. Pilgrim at Tinker Creek by Annie Dillard
  3. This Day: Collected & New Sabbath Poems by Wendall Berry
  4. God Behaving Badly: Is the God of the Old Testament Angry, Sexist and Racist?
    by David T. Lamb
  5. Are Women Human? Penetrating, Sensible, and Witty Essays on the Role of Women in Society by Dorothy L. Sayers
  6. The Nightingale by Kristen Hannah
  7. Gilead by Marilynne Robinson
  8. Hyperbole and a Half: Unfortunate Situations, Flawed Coping Mechanisms, Mayhem, and Other Things That Happened by Allie Brosh
  9. The Way of Kings by Brandon Sanderson
  10. Bloodline by Claudia Gray

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly link-up hosted at The Broke and the Bookish