When I looked up the definition of “well-read”, Google gave me this:
(of a person) knowledgeable and informed as a result of extensive reading.
“Ada was well read in French and German literature”
knowledgeable, well informed, well versed, erudite, scholarly, literate, educated, cultured, bookish, studious; dated lettered
That describes most of us, right?
But then through my search I found a website: a list challenge that asks you how many books have you read, from a list of 143. I checked off 54 books so I received a score of 38%. So according to this list I am not considered to be “well-read”.
I know this was a list made up by someone and I shouldn’t really take it seriously This list is seriously flawed and I am not saying this because I got a low score. First, it capped what I consider a low amount of books. Second, whoever compiled this list only chose the popular classics, for example only putting Pride and Prejudice and not Austen’s other works or only putting three of Shakespeare’s plays when he wrote so much more than that. Third, the person who compiled didn’t look it over correctly because they would have noticed that they put The Secret Garden twice on the list and Inferno by Dante is part of The Divine Comedy so both shouldn’t be on the list as separate works. That affects the margin of your score.
But what I really want to discuss today is the impression that I received from the title of the list:
Books to Read to Be Considered Well Read
Contemporary or classic novels, plays, poem and short story anthologies, that any serious reader should read at least ones in his or her life.”
So, only reading the classics makes a person a serious reader? Isn’t a serious reader who, and I can’t think of a better way of saying this, “seriously” reads? And that is what this week’s discussion: what makes a person “well-read”?
When you think of sequels, you most likely associated with movies. When a movie becomes a huge hit, either culturally or financially (mostly focused on the latter), a sequel is quickly announced. I mean, take a look at Jurassic World (which was awesome by the way). It became the 3rd top-grossing of all time and Universal Studios announced a sequel for 2018.
But as we have seen with the parade of sequels that stroll through theaters basically every summer, they can be both a blessing and a curse. When the latter happens, it tends to ruin the elements and characteristics of the original movie. This can also be applied to books and with the recent release of Go Set a Watchman by Harper Lee, I thought this would be the perfect time to discuss book sequels.
Because while they are so important, characters can also affect how you feel about the book in its entirety. If you are overcome by the negative characteristics, you might forget about everything else that’s good about the novel and just focusing on the bad. So that is why this week, I will be talking about likeability of characters.
As book lovers, we are bound to have a personal connection with the characters, which of course is natural. When we read, we’re entering into another world, trying to get a sense of our surroundings, develop a deep connection. So in order for us to like this new world, we have to like the people who are in it, i.e. the characters. It’s only expected. But is having that deep connection with the book characters hindering our own experience with this new world? Are we allowing characters’ particular personalities judge a book unfairly?
I started thinking about this when I read Kernel of Nonsense’s post ” ‘Perfect Heroes’ “. Although she mainly concentrates on female protagonists in YA literature, she questions why are female protagonists portrayed as insecure and awkward while the male characters are portrayed as “perfect”. And it gave me an idea on a different topic: the portrayal of female characters in adult fiction. There is always a discussion about young girls being portrayed in literature but never any real discussion about adult woman. Are there any adult female characters to look up to?
I know some of you are already go on the defense and believe that I’m forgetting the likes of Elizabeth Bennet or Jane Eyre and while they are terrific, I was more thinking of contemporary heroines. Adult female
characters who are written in this century. When we’re asked about present day heroines who we admire, some immediately respond Katniss Everdeen and Hermoine Granger. These two great characters are great role models and should be just admired. However, what about the characters who are in their 20’s, 30’s, or 40’s? Where is their recognition when it comes to admiration? Continue reading “Weekly Tea Discussion: Adult Female Characters”→
I can’t believe that tomorrow will already be July! This month has went by too fast. But as June comes and goes, summer comes into full swing which gives us more opportunities to catch up on our reading.
Although this was relatively a quiet month compared to last, I didn’t get to do as much reading I would have liked to. I guess I met with some stinkers and god forbid, it was difficult for me to continue to read.But I always try to persevere. This month I read 3 books and 1 book I couldn’t finish because I was disinterested in it. Only one, a novella, met my “WOW!” thermometer. You can find my reviews of these books below:
Well it’s already the beginning of June. We have to be careful because before we know it it’ll be December 31.
So far, May was a pretty busy month for me. There was not one moment to rest, but I’m not complaining. I got to read and do interesting things last month.
This month’s recap: with a lot of sweat and determination I managed to finish FOUR books this month. I know that may not seem like a lot to some but for someone who has a full time job, I think it is a great achievement. Three of them were great reads and highly recommend them to you all and one that could of been better. You can read my reviews of the books I read below:
Last month I started Weekly Tea Discussion and I want to thank you all for the great response and feedback I received from my posts. I hope all of you are enjoying reading them as much as I enjoy writing them. If you haven’t read any of them, here are some previous posts and watch for a new post every Friday:
Usually mention this but this is somewhat book related. In the first time in six years, I went to see Wolf Hall on Broadway, both parts one and two. The play is based off Hillary Mantel’s novels Wolf Hall and Bring Up The Bodies. It was so good and now I want to read the books!
BookCon happened and it was such a great experience! If you want to read more about it and see great pictures at the same time, check out my post here.
Upcoming for Next Month:
As of right now, nothing. But you never know, that soon might change. I will keep you posted.
On this week’s Weekly Tea Discussion, I would like to discuss diversity in books…or in this case lack there of.
When I was young, it really didn’t click with me that I wasn’t reading young adult books that featured black girls. I mean, I was reading great series when I was a kid: The Babysitter Club, Sweet Valley High, Nancy Drew. It just never really occurred to me that I wasn’t reading books with characters that were a lot like myself. However, when the topic of books lacking diversity I started to look back at my reading habits as a child and realized that my childhood reading indeed lacked diverse characters. On the top of my head, I can think of only five books I read when I was kid that featured minority male or female characters (it might be a more but can’t remember that far back). Continue reading “Weekly Tea Discussion: Diversity In Books”→
You are browsing through a bookstore or your local library. You see a book stands out to you. You read the description and the plot intrigues you enough to buy or borrow the book, highly anticipating your next great read. You get home and you start reading, pretty good so far. Until you get to a sensitive subject matter or violent action that complete turns you off from the book, where you end up giving it a bad review or stop reading it altogether. And then you think, “I wish I got a warning about the content in the book so I know beforehand not to read it.” And that is what I want to talk about in this week’s Weekly Tea Discussion: Reader Content Warnings. Continue reading “Weekly Tea Discussion: Reader Content Warnings”→