Weekend Reads #46: Solitude

Weekend Reads is a weekly discussion on a variety of topics. At the end of the post, I’ll include what I plan to read on the weekend.

For this weekend, I’ve decided to do a prompt from WordPress’s Daily Post. It’s been a while since I’ve done one of these; plus, I’m not in the mood to write about books and reading. I guess one could say my post is late since the prompt I’ve selected was for Thursday, April 28.

This weekend’s topic and Daily Post prompt:

Solitude

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Weekend Reads #42: On Writing

Weekend Reads is a weekly discussion on a variety of topics. At the end of the post, I’ll include what I plan to read on the weekend.

This weekend’s topic:

Writing

I couldn’t think of a question for this weekend’s Weekend Reads post, so I went with the first thought that popped in my mind and that’s to write about my trials with writing.

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“Pride and Prejudice” by Jane Austen

Pride and Prejudice

Not the cover I have but it’s too pretty to not include.

Since this is a very popular classic, I won’t bother including a summary. It’s universally known. As for my thoughts on the novel, see below. In short, I didn’t like it and I stopped at Chapter 18 because I refused to continue torturing myself a moment longer. If my harsh reaction to the story turned you off, then maybe you should skip the extended thoughts below.

My thoughts:

I thought I would enjoy reading Pride and Prejudice this time. After all, I’m older, wiser, and more mature than the last time I read it. A few years usually make my reading the classics a more positive experience. I hated The Great Gatsby when I read it in high school, but now I like it. And I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t have enjoyed Jason and the Argonauts as much as I did last year if I’d read it while in high school or college. I wasn’t as patient with stories when I was younger.

So I thought the same would be true for Pride and Prejudice: I’d return to it a few years later and love it so much that I’d go out and buy all the copies with pretty covers. But I guess I just don’t vibe well with Jane Austen. And when I tried to figure what exactly I don’t like about the story, I found it hard to come up with an answer. At first I thought it was the story. But I enjoyed the movie adaptations and I still thought the story funny when reading it. Then I suspected the writing. But I enjoyed the prose and sped through parts that contained mostly prose. Then I realized it’s the dialogue. It threw me off and since dialogue makes up a good bit of the story, I ended up not liking the story at all.

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“Station Eleven” by Emily St. John Mandel

Station ElevenThere are a few reasons why I read this novel. The main ones: because of the hype and because Slate Audio Book Club had such a wonderful discussion on it. I was delayed in purchasing the book so I downloaded a sample, which took the edge off my craving for the story. It was a few days before I could buy and read the entire thing and during the wait, my anticipation and expectation of the story gradually grew. However, I believe I would have had a more positive reading experience if not for the break between the sample and reading the story in its entirety.

Quick summary:

“Time had been reset by catastrophe.”

It’s present day. You’re going about your life as you normally do. There’re news alerts about an obscure flu outbreak in a country or state not exactly close to yours. You listen to the broadcast but you’re not alarmed. The outbreaks don’t seem threatening, plus they are nowhere close to you. As days pass, you hear more announcements about outbreaks that seem to be happening more rapidly. Some hospitals are too understaffed to handle the cases; others are quarantined. Then you hear that the flu is in your city. Someone you know has the symptoms. People are afraid, even the usually unperturbed newscasters are shaken. People are getting sick and dying quickly. It’s an epidemic. But you have hope. You believe the government will sort all this out eventually so you barricade yourself in your apartment and you wait…

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Weekend Reads #35: An Existential Crisis

Weekend Reads is a weekly discussion on a variety of topics. At the end of the post, I’ll include what I plan to read on the weekend.

This weekend’s question:

What’s on my mind? The blueprint for life.

Really, this Weekend Reads meme is supposed to be on bookish topics but, as you see, I talk about a bunch of random shit on here, especially since I often don’t know what to talk about. Today, I’m going with what’s been on my mind since I woke up this morning:

Life.

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