Monday, December 17, 2012

reading: into classics & across America without money

this blog post is inspired by the blog series "It's Monday! What are you reading?" which is hosted by Sheila at Book Journey. more about that, at the bottom of this post.

My current reads are a mix of e-books and paperbacks, inspired by the season and the theme of travel:

A Christmas Carol
I finally read Charles Dickens' "A Christmas Carol". Actually it was a recent read that made me curious for the original: in November, I read "Noel" - a graphic novel inspired by Dickens' tale. So now, the original, in the shape of a free e-book (here's the link). It felt like stepping back in time in a digital way. And reading it, it felt like I once saw a film version after all, some of the scenes seemed like deja-vu. The story itself and the moral is touching - this question that is more present at the ending season of the year: what will remain of our life in the end? What memory or imprint do we leave in this world, a warm or a cold one?

PS: i looked for a pdf-version, here's a neat one with illustrations: A Christmas Carol – online text version

The Kindness of Strangers
A chance find, and it was the subtitle that made me pick it up: "One man's journey from coast to coast. No promises. No guarantees. An no money." Could that work, to travel, and to mostly depend on the kindness of the people you meet while passing through? And what experiences come from it? The focus of Mike McIntyre's book is on the people he meets, and on the stories they share. A different kind of tavel book. One that puts a road realization into words: that the richest experiences in life mostly haven't much to do with money.

Travels with Charley, continued 
John Steinbeck's travelogue on exploring rural America: i started to read it on an island, and during the transit back home - and from there, it accompanied me through the week. This week I looked for a map of his trip, and found one, it's from the National Steinbeck Centre:

photo by Jill Clardy (Flickr)
The photo belongs to a photo file that also includes a photo of Steinbeck's camper, the "Rocinante". The book ends on a reflective note that also is about the nature of journeys themselves: "Who has not known a journey to be over and dead before the traveler returns? The reverse is also true: many a trip continues long after movement in time and space has ceased." 


Journeys... into Words
One of the book joys of this week was: browsing books and planning the starting reads for the 2013 reading challenges. The first books are on the way now.. January will bring: A Journey From India (India/America) + The Elegance of the Hedgehog (France). Looking forward.

More about the Reading Challenges, here: reading challenges 2013 & sorting books by continents & finding books by place ... and the direct link to the challenge i host in 2013 is:

7 Continents, 7 Billion People, 7 Books (Link)
The idea of this reading challenge is to explore the world by books from different continents and countries, and by visiting various world lists while planning the reads, to encounter the one or other unknown angle and fact about our world.


It's Monday! What are you reading? This blog post is inspired by the blog series "It's Monday! What are you reading?" which is hosted by Sheila at Book Journey. participating blogs are listed in this Linky Book List

Previous reading blog entries are collected here: bookshelf: currently  reading... there also is a visual bookshelf, just click it to get there:


Shannon (Giraffe Days) said...

I have plans to read A Christmas Carol this year - I say that every year but I'm determined this time!

I still haven't read anything by Steinbeck. I don't think I ever read Of Mice and Men, though it sure seems familiar when I read bits. I have a few of his books but haven't even heard of that one!

Have a great week, Dorothee!

Dorothee said...

I read "Of Mice and Men" once, after I watched the film. It's supposed to be the masterpiece with least different words. And "Travels with Charley" - a fellow traveller recommended it once, and i just remembered the title, not the author. When I finally looked it up, and saw it's from Steinbeck, i first thought it's another Steinbeck.

Blogger10 said...

Much like Shannon, I say I'm going to read A Christmas Carol EVERY year...and I have yet to do so. Actually, the total amount of Dickens I've read is lacking. I should work on that.

Dorothee said...

Kelly, Shannon: the Christmas Carol, it's really not a long read, about 90 pages. i looked for a pdf-version, here's a neat one with illustrations, will add the link in the text above, too:A Christmas Carol – online text version

The Relentless Reader said...

Ah, I love the picture of the map. I haven't read Travels but I'd love to get to it one day!