Monday, November 26, 2012

A Brilliant Quote.

Recently, I stumbled upon this blog in which Yann Martel, author of Life of Pi, sent a novel to the Canadian Prime Minister, Stephen Harper, every two weeks. Each used, often-paperback novel was sent with a letter in which Martel explains why he chose the novel and what is to be gained from each. In one particular letter, about the book Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit by Jeanette Winterson, the opening paragraph caught my eye and all I could think was - YES!

"The great thing about reading books is that it makes us better than cats. Cats are said to have nine lives. What is that compared to the girl, boy, man, woman who reads books? A book read is a life added to one’s own. So it takes only nine books to make cats look at you with envy." 

Very clever and very true. 

I love how every book he sent the Prime Minister was used, just to show that even though the book is worn and old, the message and meaning is still the same. 

If you were to send a book to a country leader, or even just a friend, which one would it be and why?

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Giving Thanks

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!!

Today, on my list of things to be thankful for, amongst my friends, family, education, and job, was books! How could we not be thankful for books? They teach us so many things. They're our escape on hard days. Books entertain us. And if nothing else, they are very beautiful. Be thankful that your favorite book exists. Be thankful that you have been taught so many things by reading books. Oh, and eat lots of turkey, tofurkey, mashed potatoes, and stuffing. I'm personally excited most for pumpkin pie.

Have a great holiday, fellow book nerds!

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Who would you vote for?

Entertainment Weekly is doing their annual 'Entertainers of the Year' list. These days, it seems like 'books' are lost as a form of entertainment in all of the latest TV shows, music, and movies. So it's awesome that there's an option to vote for our favorite author of the year.

After reading The Fault in Our Stars, a novel that hit very close to home and made me cry like a baby, my vote goes to John Green. I've also heard tons of awesome reviews about Gillian Flynn's Gone Girl, and after reading her first novel Sharp Objects in a class a couple semesters ago, I wouldn't doubt that it's just as great. And, of course, who doesn't love Junot Diaz and J.K. Rowling?  

Who would you vote for? 

(You can vote if you're interested HERE)

Thursday, November 15, 2012

An Open Letter to Russian Literature

Dear Russian Literature,

This must be weird for you. I know that you typically don't get a lot of fan mail. It's very rare that I come across someone that actually enjoys your company, which is why I was a little surprised to see the above flier at school. Better than sex? I'm not sure about that, but I have a very weird confession for you that I just have to get out there: I think you're fun. I like you.

I hope that it doesn't embarrass you for me to splash my newly embraced love affair with you all across the internet. I hope this isn't too soon to admit this either, for I'm not very familiar with your type. You're the mysterious type, the one that's incredibly intimidating but still alluring. Because of this, you tend to put a lot of people off. Everyone always talks about how 'dense' you are, and how hard you are to follow, but there are a few reasons why I really enjoy you. I know a list isn't very formal, but it's the only way I can use to put my feelings down.

1. You contain exclamation points!!!!! This is typically a huge no-no in contemporary literature! In my writing classes, it is frowned upon to use anything other than periods or question marks to end a sentence! I'm not sure why! All of these exclamation points add a certain excitement to the narration! A certain zest to actions and sometimes expository details!

2. You make me feel smarter. After tackling only a third of Crime and Punishment, I felt like I could write eighty pages on chemical reactions (is that a thing? I actually know nothing about it. See what you do to me?). Even though reading through your pages takes a little bit more time than reading anything else, it comes with a HUGE pay off. I feel so triumphant! I know you don't hear that often, but it's just fun to navigate your wordy pages.

3. It's fun to imagine your authors as very old men with very gray, pointed beards. Maybe this isn't a real reason to love you, but it makes the exclamation points even more entertaining :)

4. You can be quite melodramatic. Yes! There's drama! But sometimes it's a little over the top. This could also be because of the exclamation points. Right now, in Cancer Ward by Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, a doctor of sorts is trying to figure out to keep her lead nurse Olympiada from going to a seminar for ten days. This conflict seems pretty small, but it's been going on for several pages now. There are also several paragraphs dedicated to a shortage of cleaning rags. But I love it! It's possible you didn't mean for it to be silly, but it makes for an entertaining read. It's okay, Russian Lit, I'm pretty melodramatic, too.

This may not seem like a lot of reasons, but four reasons are better than zero. And I'm sure a majority of people have zero reasons to love you, so be grateful, okay? Plus, there are several other, smaller reasons to love you, such as your word choices, and the history behind writing you. People are actually EXILED in you. It may be just me, but I feel like being exiled is something reserved only for movies, and I only imagine people sitting in deserts.

I better wrap this up. You're probably tired of reading me prattle on, and I'm getting rather tired. Keep being you, Russian Lit.


Saturday, November 10, 2012

Welcome to The Lit Girl!

Hello, everyone!

I have been waiting for DAYS to launch The Lit Girl, and I'm so excited that the day is finally here. For as long as I can remember, I've loved reading. The first book I remember being able to read through was a tiny little book about an earth worm. That was in kindergarden. As I've grown up, my love for books, reading, and writing has only gotten bigger, and bigger, and bigger.

What's there to love about books? The look of them, the smell of them, the stories within them, the stories behind them, the sometimes-crazy sometimes-boring authors that have written them, the comfort of feeling a worn paperback in your hands, the coziness that comes with curling up with your latest book pickup and a cup of coffee. I think the question with the shortest answer would be, "what's NOT to love about books?" and the answer would be, "nothing."

I decided to start this blog because of this immense love I have for reading and sharing what I'm reading. I think everyone has certain friends they go to for certain things. You've got a friend that knows of the best place to get cupcakes in town. You've got a friend who knows where to get the best cocktails. I've become the friend that my friends come to for book recommendations. I read just about anything. Fiction, non-fiction, short stories, the classics, memoir, biography, young adult, etc, and I've always got a recommendation at the ready.

What you'll find here at The Lit Girl is reviews of books I've been reading, interviews with authors and fellow readers, recommendations, and other Book Lover Friendly Posts. So please, bookmark me, and feel free to comment and join in on the discussion. I'd love for this blog to be just one tiny spot in the huge community of book nerds like me to join together and talk about our common appreciation of the written word.

Current Read: Cancer Ward by Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn

Monday, November 5, 2012

Coming Soon!

The Lit Girl will be officially launching November 10, 2012! Keep this blog bookmarked for loads of book reviews, lit-industry news, reader-friendly posts, and author & reader interviews.

I'm so excited to share my love of books and reading with you, and I hope for this blog to add to the huge community of readers and writers out there who are passionate about the written word and continue working to keep reading awesome.

See you soon!