Buzzfeed Books.

So I did a post just the other day about how much I love Goodreads. A site that acts like a beacon for book lovers all over the world, but I thought it was only right to mention another great little treat for us Bookworms out there. By now, we’re all familiar with Buzzfeed and it’s ability to pull together the most accurate and hilarious lists on Primary School Years or Things Only Short People Will Understand. But just last night, I came across possibly one of the most accurate lists compiled. You can view it here – http://www.buzzfeed.com/summeranne/signs-youre-addicted-to-books-reading?utm_term=292iux8#292iux8

But I thought I’d go through the points that I could empathise with (which was pretty much all of them, bar one or two) and explain why I can relate to them so much.

1. When you were little, books were your best friends in the world – They’ve used a gif from the film Matilda with this and I felt like I was home. My childhood soul mate growing up was Matilda (as you may have noticed in a previous post – my parents were not scary and my school didn’t have a tyrant like Miss Trunchbull) but growing up books were my go to security blanket. It wasn’t that I didn’t have friends, but kids can be cruel. I was bullied a lot as a child, and books didn’t hurt me, or say mean things. They just accepted me. So right from the start of reading the list I was smiling and nodding my head.

2. When you’re reading a good book, you forget to eat or sleep – So ok, this one may be a little far fetched, but if I’m reading a book and dinner is served, I will wait until I have at least reached the end of a paragraph or page until I tuck into my meal. The same with sleep, I can’t just stop reading mid sentence, I have to be at a comfortable place to put the book down.

3. This is all you think about when you picture you “dream home” – As a logophile/bookworm, it would be pretty silly of me, if this WASN’T my idea of a dream home. Just look at all those books, I feel giddy just looking at the photo.

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4. Walking by a closed bookstore is torture. When they’re open, you’re incapable of going in without buying something – Yes and yes. Quite simply, I hate ‘shopping’ in the traditional sense. I’ve never really been one of those girls who gets her nails done and has regular retail therapy. Despite being 29, my mum is always telling me I need to buy new clothes, but the truth is it depresses me. I walk into these shops with their neon lights and mannequins wearing all these bright and daring cuts and colours and my mouth goes dry. My hands start to sweat and I start tugging at my hair. I always inevitably panic buy a pair of jeans (that are like the other 3 pairs I have) a jumper or a cardigan and if I do buy a dress its black and white. Books fit all sizes and types of personality, they suit everyone. *Please note that I do own some nice clothes, but they’ve either been bought for me as Christmas gifts, or I’ve shopped from the safety of my home minus the queues and dressing rooms of clothes shop*

5. Anytime you undertake any idea or project, the first step is to read a lot of books about it. You assume that a book can teach you anything Well, yes! If I was to wake up tomorrow and decided I wanted to be an Astrophysicist (which I did want to be at one point) or become an expert at fixing cars, I wouldn’t be able to just go out and do it. A certain amount of studying would be involved. Ergo, it makes sense to read up on a project.

6. You would never shame someone for reading. But you’re happy to shame them for not reading – Yes! Now, before you all start screaming at the computer screens claiming I’m ignorant, I know reading isn’t for everybody and I know some people don’t have the concentration for reading, or just don’t find it appealing. That is fair enough, what I don’t like are the people where the conversation goes something like this; Person A: ‘WHY are you reading that?! It’s so bad!’Person B: ‘Oh, well I like to form my own opinion on something. I take it you’ve read it then?!’Person A: ‘No! But I’ve been told it’s shit!’ Person B: *full on death glare* Don’t criticise something if you haven’t read it, tried to read it or at least read an excerpt from it. Don’t try to shame me for wanting to read something when you have no interest in reading it at all. Just go away.

7. You make decisions about people based on the number of books they have – Ok, so this one isn’t necessarily true. It’s great if you go to someone’s house and they have a bookshelf because you can speak to them about their books; see if you have any of the same reading tastes. But what I will not tolerate is people who claim to have never read a book. I smell a slight hint of nonsense my friend, even if you haven’t read a book since you left school, the chances are you have probably read at least one book in your life. Not only that, but a statement like that is so incredibly offensive to the people of the world who don’t have the ability to read because of learning difficulties or the fact they live in a 3rd world country. Just, no!

8. But when someone reads a book you recommend them, your faith in humanity is completely restored – I get SO excited when people ask me for book recommendations. I feel quite flattered that people want to read something new and exciting and have come ask my opinion on what they should try out. Like my opinion matters, because in the big scheme of things, it doesn’t. Books, like anything else, are subjective to the person reading it. What I love and adore someone else could detest. But still it is nice to recommend something, have someone read it and then hear what they have to say when they come back.

9. The book is always, always, always better – I do love a good book to film adaptation but when you read a book, and it’s such a personal experience. It’s immersive; you can create your own idea of how that world looks, or how those characters sound. Plus the bonus of a book is you often know what the characters are thinking and feeling.

10. One of your life’s greatest pleasures is the smell of old books – Every book I buy, whether it’s brand new from a bookshop, or bought fourth hand from a pop up book stall on the street, I always smell them. I’ve had a few strange looks for this in the past, and people have even told me it’s gross. But I just like to think, especially if it’s an old book, just think for a second what journey that book has been on, who has owned the book. The book itself is a story of it’s own and I’m just smelling it’s journey through time.

11. Book violence concerns you greatly – I will not tolerate people who use books as coasters for their coffee cups, or break the spine of a book. Stop being violent to them. It takes a lot of time for that book to get where it is, from the first idea sparked in the authors brain, to re-writes, edits, proofreading, printing…All those stages it’s been through just for you to get it and throw it around. Books are priceless little gifts, treat them with respect.

12. Finishing a book you loved is like losing a best friend – This sums up how I felt about the Harry Potter series. The long waits between each book, racing through them because they were so well written and when it got to that final book, trying to pace yourself because you know as soon as you finishing reading that’s it. But looking at this from another perspective, I can pick up a book and revisit those pages again and still feel the same things over and over again. That’s the beauty of books, once you’ve invested in them, they’ll never let you down.

Like I said, I did relate to most of the Buzzfeed list but these are the ones that REALLY spoke to me. Go check out the list, you may find yourself empathising too.

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A bit about me..

I always find things like this incredibly difficult to do. If you start spouting off facts about yourself you run the risk of sounding like you’re selling yourself on a dating website, and if you don’t reveal too much you come across as though you’re trying to be mysterious.

So what about me? Well I’m a twenty something woman who has always been passionate about books from a young age. Growing up my parents encouraged both my brother and I to embrace the written word, and every Christmas amongst the gifts of toys and teddy bears would always be two books each wrapped in delicate tissue paper. My lunch times at Primary School were spent immersing myself into the worlds of Enid Blyton and Roald Dahl, which is probably why I felt some kind of affinity with Matilda (minus the horrible parents and scary Miss Trunchbull) and it didn’t stop, as I got older.

Many a Sunday afternoon was spent curled up on a chair reading a book, expanding my mind and knowledge on various subjects such as history, science and, magic (does magic count?) I hope it does count, because a series of books that changed my life were JK Rowling’s ‘Harry Potter’ books. In my opinion, there hadn’t been anyone since Mr Dahl who had captivated children and adults alike with their worlds and characters. Aside from reading about boy wizards and giant peaches, I also read a lot of classic books by the likes of Jane Austen, Thomas Hardy and Charles Dickens, books that other young children would have considered boring or dull but which I felt, shown me a glimpse of the past and the courage female authors like Austen displayed by writing strong female characters like Elizabeth Bennet.

There was a point between leaving college and going in to the real working world, where reading took a backseat in my life. I had some painful personal issues going on and was stricken with grief at the death of my beloved hero and father.

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This was the man who fed my love for literature and introduced to me to various books on various topics, he was someone I could really sit with and analyse a book, and it was always great to hear his take on the book. Needless to say I wasn’t reading much, up until a few years ago, when I was feeling nostalgic, missing my dad and thought I’d pick up the copy of Pride & Prejudice he bought me. It had been a while since I read it and I wanted to familiarise myself with the book again, it acted as a catalyst. I got back on Goodreads, asked for recommendations and this year alone I have already read nearly 32 books. Granted, I know there are people out there who will already be fast approaching 100 but this is a big deal for me, after taking a break from one of my favourite hobbies for so long, it has filled me with motivation and passion again.

This blog will be a place for me to talk about some of my favourite books, books I am currently reading, or have already read and will allow me to have an outlet where I can talk about books, books and yes you’ve guessed it, even more books. Despite the fact that e-readers such as Kindles have increased the popularity of reading, there’s still something considered quite sad about being 29 and opting to stay in on the weekend with a book and a cup of tea. It’s still considered rather odd if you’re a woman whose idea of the perfect shopping trip is spending almost an hour browsing in Waterstones or perusing charity shops for books. But that’s me….Give me books more than shoes any day.