Tag Archives: books

Second Time Around…And Third, Fourth, Fifth…Many Times…

WordPress daily prompt: Tell us about a book you can read again and again without getting bored — what is it that speaks to you?

PridePrejudice423x630Without a doubt Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice is the book that I turn to often. I don’t recall how many times I’ve read it. Many times, is all I can say.

I never tire of Elizabeth Bennet’s and Mr. Darcy’s love story.

It deals with themes of family, class structures, morality, love, loyalty, and redemption in 19th century England.

I’ve also watched many movies and TV versions of the book. My favourite has to be the 1995 BBC version with Colin Firth and and Jennifer Ehle, told in 6 exhilarating  episodes that explored the story in glorious detailed detail.

 

The Frozen Sea Within Us?

Franz Kafka believed that reading books that wound and stab us will melt the frozen sea within us to connect us with our soul.

I agree that books have the power to move people physically and emotionally. Some do sting and others do wound as beliefs are changed and values are questioned. I wouldn’t go as far as to assert that everyone has a frozen sea within them but then again I may not be quite getting what he’s trying to say. Not everyone lives in existential crisis mode all the time.

Continue reading The Frozen Sea Within Us?

Once upon a time…happily ever after (Mandela Day)

It started when I was 5. My heart was broken when the beautiful princess pricked her finger on the spindle and fell into a deep sleep for a hundred years. I was happy with joy when the prince charming kissed her and she woke up to much jubilation.

I rode on the back of a cat with huge boots as he tramped through the country-side, charming the king with gifts. Together we crafted the clever plan to bring his master to the attention of the king (and his daughter). And I egged him on as he outwitted the horrible ogre.

Throughout the years I’ve immersed myself in alternative worlds. Through devouring books I have known past worlds and future worlds. The sheer pleasure of losing myself in these other worlds, the current one momentarily forgotten, dishes, washing, cooking…all relegated to the back seat as I enjoy front row seats to witness Sherlock Holmes solve mysterious crimes and  the dashing Darcy romance the clever Elizabeth.

As a kid I refused to do my homework until I had read for an hour. By the time I got to my homework I was in a much better frame of mind. Reading has always been and remains a stress-reliever for me.

Reading provides general knowledge. A knowledge of the world. A knowledge of different people – it promotes diversity and cultural awareness. There are worlds and minds to be explored in the pages of a book.

Where else can You Journey to the Centre of the Earth? Or go Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea? Or spend Five Weeks in a Balloon? Jules Verne’s books have been hugely inspirational to me.  In real life, to do each of those things would take a ton of money. But I can experience them anyway, in my imagination, for a whole lot less.

Amidst the Limpopo textbook scandal I am keenly aware of being extremely fortunate to have been brought up surrounded by books. A child should never have to ask for a book. A child should never want for a book. It should be provided, thereby encouraging them to read for enjoyment, affording them the opportunity to discover  wonderful, different, new, worlds and peoples. Allowing minds to develop and expand.

Mandela Day is coming up on the 18th of July. What better day is there to donate books to children who need them? I will be doing so.

And in so doing I hope to go a bit of a way towards affording kids who can’t afford books, the beginnings of a happily ever after.