I am a reader. I am a hardcore reader. I am a traitorous reader.
I love reading and immersing myself in life stories of other people, historical or fictitious. I tend to read about anything, whether it is a biography or a sci fi novel, although I very rarely read anything that has to do with romance; but on my very very long list of books I want to buy and read there are a few classics which revolve around the theme of love.
I used the term ‘traitorous’ to say that I am not extremely loyal to the art of reading, which means that I have periods of intense fanaticism and periods of no reading at all; and I hate myself for that. I know I can devour books in 3 days, but I get lazy and distracted. Don’t judge.
I also believe in the vital importance of reading the classics. I feel there is a reason why they are called that and that reason is because they have shaped the modern day mentality.
This above is my library. It is not big, unfortunately, and there are some books that I still have to read. The titles are obviously in Italian, although I have decided to buy English books in their original language, to practise even more this amazing language.
I will now make a list with my favourite books of the lot, although each and every one holds a place in my heart. The list will not be a “top 10” sort of list, but a mere listing of the way they are arranged in the photos.
Harry Potter by JK Rowling
Okay, do we even have to talk about this? This whole series was, is and will always be my childhood. From the books, which I devoured in two days, at the most, to the films, which you can see above the books themselves. I also own the three additional books and the Harry Potter Film Wizardry.
I cannot express my gratitude to Queen Rowling since I do not know words grand enough to talk about her creations. This series will always hold a special place in my mind. Slytherin to the day I die.
The DaVinci Code by Dan Brown
“It follows Harvard professor and symbologist Robert Langdon and the gifted French cryptologist Sophie Neveu as they investigate a murder in Paris’ Louvre Museum. They are stunned to discover bizarre riddles that lead them to a trail of clues hidden in the works of Leonardo da Vinci, seemingly left by the museum’s late curator, Jacques Saunière minutes before his death. Their race to discover the closely guarded secret held by Saunière uncovers a battle between the Priory of Sion and Opus Dei over the possibility of Jesus having been married to Mary Magdalene.” This was taken from danbrown.wikia.com
And not just that, but the whole series revolving around Robert Langdon, the symbology professor at Harvard, which includes “Angels and Demons”, “The Lost Symbol”, “The DaVinci Code” and “Inferno”. I still believe that the Code is the most interesting one, maybe because it revolves around the almost legendary figure of Leonardo, such an enigma even today. The way the plot is constructed makes you actually reflect and reason and every move is linked to the next, therefore curiosity will get the best of you. Always.
Full Dark, No Stars by Stephen King
This was Stephen King’s first work that I read and it was a cultural shock : I was not used to such an intricate and particular way of writing, having read very few books before this. The way he describes particularly gruesome scenes of slaughter or mental breakdowns is extremely cold and realistic at the same time. This is a collection of novellas, all centred around the figure of the Woman, who seeks revenge or justice, or is the reason why the action happens, in one way or another. My favourite is the last one, “A Good Marriage”, which was also adapted into a movie and I suggest you should watch it although, in my opinion, the novella is much better. It is better to imagine horror than to see it on a screen.
It by Stephen King
Get used to Mr. King’s name, since he is my favourite modern day author. “It” is the longest book I’ve ever read (1000+ pages) and I even had to take a break from reading it, losing focus at times; it was all my fault, I agree, because the book is so intense and well written and could have no faults. We all know the plot :
“The novel is set in the fictional town of Derry, Maine, where a malevolent, shape-shifting, child-killing monster (referred to simply as “It”) lurks in the sewers and storm-drains.
In 1958, Bill Denbrough, Mike Hanlon, Ben Hanscom, Eddie Kaspbrak, Beverly Marsh, Richie Tozier and Stan Uris (who call themselves The Losers’ Club) each have horrifying encounters with the creature which takes on the shape of their greatest fears (but Its most prominent form is that of a sadistic, balloon-wielding clown called Pennywise). The Losers decide to hunt down the creature and destroy It. The narrative jumps forward to 1985, when murders are once again taking place in Derry. Mike Hanlon, the only one of the Losers who has remained in Derry, is convinced that the creature has returned and calls each of the Losers reminding them of the promise they made as children. Each of the six other Losers have gone on to success and wealth, but had completely forgotten about their childhood’ s friendships and traumas. They all return and begin piecing together their hazy memories.” This was taken from stephenking.wikia.com
This is the kind of book I would call a classic and a must-read.
The Shining by Stephen King
“Isolated for months on end Jack Torrance, an abusive alcoholic writer has been given the responsibility of caretaker of the famous “Overlook”. With his beautiful and strong willed Wife- Wendy and misfit son Danny, the three will come to learn that they are not alone in the Hotel which they reside in.-The Overlook is much more than a five-star resort. Discover the shocking scandals and gruesome truth, that haunts this Hotel so, in…The Shining!” Taken from stephenking.wikia.com
This is the last King book I am mentioning here, but at the same time it is the most intense and purely horrific in my opinion. Behind the apparent horror and mental troubles there lay much more important problems, revolving around family and love. At least that’s what I took from it. I do own “Doctor Sleep”, which is a continuum of the book mentioned above, and it is next on my list.
The Baron in the Trees by Italo Calvino
This is an Italian must read. Its title (originally “Il Barone Rampante”) says it all : the story is about a baron who lives in the trees and decides to never get off; it narrates his entire life (from his brother’s point of view), from when he puts foot on his first tree to the day he dies. It has many underlying themes and it is, in my opinion, a quick read and also a fun one, from the very first page, which describes his unconventional family. If you want a piece of refined Italian literature, you should start with this.
Violent Life by Pier Paolo Pasolini
This is my most recent read and to be honest, I started with the wrong foot, since it was assigned by my Literature teacher, and therefore I adopted a hostile approach towards it. But I finished it and I felt like a piece of me got torn apart. The book narrates the post-WWII life of Roman 18 to 20-year-olds, and it is focused on Tommaso, a troublesome guy. It is written in dialect, so it will probably not have the same effect in English, but it is worth a try. It is excruciating and it is most definitely an eye-opener. There are also a lot of politics involved and even if, judging by the language used, it was written for common people, I think there are many important themes that should be analysed in this work of art. It was also made into a film.
Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov
“Humbert Humbert is a European intellectual adrift in America, haunted by memories of a lost adolescent love. When he meets his ideal nymphet in the shape of 12-year-old Dolores Haze, he constructs an elaborate plot to seduce her, but first he must get rid of her mother. In spite of his diabolical wit, reality proves to be more slippery than Humbert’s feverish fantasies, and Lolita refuses to conform to his image of the perfect lover.” Taken from amazon.com
This book was the hardest piece of literature I have ever had to read. Skipping the unorthodox plot, the way this book is written is chaotic but organised, clear but confused, all at the same time. I had to often re-read pieces here and there to get a general idea, but regardless, it is one of the classics and Nabokov’s style is unbeatable.
So there’s that. I will keep you guys posted on any new books I read.