I am a self-professed bookworm. I even went so far as to read 100 books in a single year in 2011. If you do the math, that’s 2 books a week! Don’t ask me how I did it, because I don’t know. I’m starting to share book roundups because I’m so passionate about reading, and because February is all things love that’s the focus of the first ever edition of In My Books!
1. Stardust by Neil Gaiman
This book is a brilliant fantasy novel that features a boy of half-fairy parentage who goes on a quest to fetch a fallen star for the girl he loves. He discovers that the star is a beautiful woman with a feisty temper who isn’t so keen on becoming a token of love for a girl back home. The two of them encounter all sorts of mythical creatures throughout their return to the boy’s home, including witches, ships captained by pirates that sail through the sky, elf-lords, magic and much more. It’s a spellbinding story that I never grow tired of. It’s also a wonderful movie!
2. The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
I was first introduced to this novel in high school English AP class and I’ve loved it ever since – I’d even go so far as to say it belongs on my top 5 favorite books of all time list. I have always been in love with the glitz and glam of the 1930’s jazz age, which is when this novel occurs. It tells the love story of Jay Gatsby and Daisy Buchanan, who met five years previous to the novel when Gatsby is an impoverished officer and Daisy an eligible beauty. Gatsby went to war overseas and Daisy married an abundantly wealthy bully of a man in the meantime. After the war, Gatsby becomes obsessed with attaining wealth, and Daisy, at any cost. What follows is the unveiling of their love and unraveling of their lives, ending in tragedy. This novel is also a movie, scheduled for release in May of this year!
3. Love: 100 Readings in Celebration of Marriage and Love by Robert Atwell
This book was gifted to me by my mother-in-law when I was searching for poetry or readings about love to incorporate into our wedding ceremony, which Husbie and I wrote ourselves with the help of a Pastor. Including such well-known authors as E.E. Cummings, Shakespeare and Emily Dickinson, this book is full of love in the form of sonnets, poems, blessings, reflections and readings from the Bible. It’s the perfect source for speeches, grand proclamations of affection, love letters or just everyday post-it note kind of love!
4. Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
Another high school English AP novel, this is where my affection for Jane Austen began. This novel is a brilliantly written, witty social comedy that focuses on the prejudice of the main heroine, Elizabeth Bennet, and her ever-growing vexation and affection for the proud and haughty Mr. Fitzwilliam Darcy. It is an intelligent commentary on social structures of the time and the expectations placed on women in regards to marriage. Elizabeth is a wonderful representation of a strong and independent female which was perhaps less common in those days, but very easy to relate to even now. It is impossible not to fall deeply, madly in love with Mr. Darcy – he will have you wishing that men still said things like “you have bewitched me, body and soul, and I love, I love, I love you.” SIGH!
5. Love Poems by Pablo Neruda
I’ve yet to read this book, but I’ve read many reviews that sing praises for this little book’s passion and sensuality. I pick it up every time I see it, in love with its beautiful cover filled with script and metallic foil. I’ve been told the language is quite visual and that it resonates with many. This one is next on my list to pick up and actually bring home with me!
6. The 5 Love Languages by Gary Chapman
This book warrants a blog post all its own. All I can say is this: GAME CHANGER. Husbie and I were tasked with reading this book for our marriage counseling, and I am SO glad that we were! Gary Chapman believes that each of us speak one (or more) of five love languages – Words of Affirmation, Acts of Service, Receiving Gifts, Quality Time and Physical Touch. The chance that you and your partner speak the same love language is usually low. Learning to speak your partners preferred language of love can be a challenge but is SO worth it and will lead to a deeper connection and a stronger, longer lasting love. I recommend this book to anyone that has a relationship with anyone, so basically, EVERYONE! This mentality can be applied to any and all relationships in your life.