Hello booknerds! Welcome to #blogtober Day 17. Today’s book recommendations are something I haven’t done in the past!
Reading is like traveling, but a lot cheaper. You get to visit new places and have vivid experiences. For those of you who want to explore Japan but on a budget, I recommend trying Japanese literature, and of course there’s sushi!
5 Japanese Fiction Book Recommendations
1.Memoirs of a Geisha – by Arthur Golden
Find out what happens in the world of geishas, a world where appearances are pivotal, a girl’s virginity is auctioned in a bid, and how women are trained to beguile the most powerful men. It’s a shocking revelation about how this world exists parallel to our world. Emotional, dramatic, and hard-hitting, Memoirs of a Geisha is something that you cannot miss.
A special mention to the movie, its equally gripping and a piece of art.
2. Norwegian Wood – by Haruki Murakami
A Japanese books recommendation list is incomplete without Murakami. Out of the ones I’ve read, this one is my favorite. And yes, a long overdue re-read is awaited. It’s a love story, but in Murakami style – whimsical and philosophical in its own ways.
I won’t say much, read it to experience the magic of his writing!
3. The Devotion of Suspect X – by Keigo Higashino
The Devotion of Suspect X is a murder mystery that’ll keep you highly engaged. The story traces Yasuko, a single mother who thinks she’s escaped her abusive husband – Togashi. But one day he lands up at their door to extort money. The situation goes out of hand and Togashi is dead. Yasuko’s next door neighbor, Ishigami decides to help her in disposing off the body and plotting a fool proof cover up story.
But is the story really fool proof, or are Yasuko and Ishigami making a fool of the police department? Find out in this brilliantly crafted thriller.
4. In the Miso Soup – by Ryu Murakami
In the Miso Soup is a psychosexual thriller! If you’re looking for something dark, gruesome, and engaging, this will keep you on the edge of your seat. It’s the story of Frank, an American tourist who has hired Kenji, a local tourist guide to take him through the alleys of Tokyo. But there’s a lot hidden in these alleys, and Frank’s behavior is so strange that Kenji thinks Frank is the serial killer that the city police is hunting. It’s quite graphic and disturbing in places, so be warned.
5. Salvation of a Saint – Keigo Higashino
I read this way back in 2013, and the plot is still fresh in my mind. It was so engaging! Salvation of a Saint is a murder mystery. Yoshitaka, who’s about to leave his marriage and his wife, is found murdered with poisonous coffee. His wife, Ayane, becomes prime suspect. But she was a hundred miles away when the murder happened. So who did it?
Keep guessing through the twists and turns, and trust me you’re in for a shocking ride. Loved it!!
If you’ve read a Murakami that you adore, please share it in the comments below. Also any more book recommendations are welcome. I’ll see you tomorrow for something heartfelt, so do come back! Byeee
Starting my 2017 Favorites list with my ultimate love – Books! This year was an okayish reading year, but considering the hurricane I faced in personal life, I’m quite pleased. Looking forward to some great reading in 2018!
I read 10, 567 pages across 28 books. And I did accomplish my Goodreads Goal. So let’s begin this bookish journey in no particular order of favoritism.
Best books of 2017
Disclaimer – All of these weren’t published in 2017 (some of them were also). I just read them this year and fell in love, that’s why these lovelies have made it to the list.
1. The Sun Is Also a Star – Nicola Yoon
Started the year with some YA reading and totally loved it. This one is a story about Natasha (Jamaican) and Daniel (Korean American). Tasha’s family is being deported back, while Daniel is struggling to prove himself to his parents. Tasha and Daniel meet accidentally and feel a magnetic pull.
The story traces their journey and relationship through that one day, as they explore New York and themselves. There is so much diversity – ethnicity, race, culture, and then finding your true self and the signs that universe shows.
Candy floss with realistic feels, it has feels on point….
2. One Day – David Nicholls
Those who are meant to be, will be. If you haven’t read any David Nicholls books, then I highly recommend you do. They have such a happy vibe.
I loved the narrative style of this one. Story of 2 people Em and Dex, told over a span of 20 years. How life changes, yet some things remain constant. It is romantic, but not dripping sweet which is a great thing. Em and Dex are #goals.
Also the movie adaptation is pretty good!
3. Before I Go To Sleep – S.J Watson
Christine has acute case of amnesia. As she sleeps, her memories are erased. She wakes up everyday feeling lost in this world. She is constantly seeking support from her husband and psychiatrist. But all is not good, and there are some layered twists that need to be unfolded.
The premise is quite interesting, but it does get slow and repetitive in places. The suspense adds to the overall curiosity. The ending though is worth all the ups and downs.
4. After You – Jojo Moyes
You know a list of favorites is incomplete without a Jojo Moyes book. It is the sequel of Me Before You and traces the life journey of Lou after Will’s death. Trademark Jojo Moyes style – whimsy feels, romance, and lots of emotions.
The reminiscences of the romance between Lou and Will are like warm caramel sauce on ice-cream, pure love! The book talks about how important it is to move on. It’ll make you smile, cry, and give the strength to fall in love again! It’s pretty good, but there’s no getting over Me Before You, anytime soon.
5. Into The Water – Paula Hawkins
If you want to read an atmospheric thriller, this will make the perfect pick. The writing style is fabulous. You’re confused between witchcraft, suicides, eerie vibes and general disgust about gruesome deaths. The plot unfolds one layer at a time. The only problem, it does drag in between. Lots of characters and interconnected stories just add to the fun of this thriller.
6. Forbidden – Tabitha Suzuma
Forbidden is a YA, but so different from anything I’ve read in this genre. Maya loves Lochie. Lochie loves Maya. The problem – they are brother and sister. The complex issue of incest has been handled so well. A lot of people might find it weird, but the book is not just about incest, it is emotional and gets you thinking.
It is sensual just in right proportions and doesn’t at any point feel vulgar. The romance between Lochie and Maya is so pure, you can actually feel them in love.
7. In the Miso Soup – Ryu Murakami
If you’re someone who loves dark thrillers, this is a must read. Japanese literature is legit amazing. In the Miso Soup is a psychosexual thriller, some portions are quite disturbing and graphic. But that’s how it instills that feeling in you.
It is so gruesome and goth, yet so engaging. You get to know about the crime right in the beginning, but the way the protagonist and his layered personality unfolds is amazing to read. Just make sure you keep a happy read ready as your next book!
8. Hannah’s List – Debbie Macomber
A heartwarming love story, with a difference! Hannah wants her husband (Michael) to remarry after her death and suggests 3 options. The chemistry and friendship between Michael and the three women is portrayed so well.
It tugs all the right strings to make you feel alive. The loss, grief, and pain are so relatable that it leaves you sobbing. Hannah’s List makes the perfect setting for a happily ever after.
9. Baaz – Anuja Chauhan
It has Anuja Chauhan’s trademark wit, masala, and lots of laughter. A happy breezy read. She knows how to weave characters that stay with you forever. A captivating story, humorous writing style, and a handsome badass uniform clad protagonist, what else can you ask for in a contemporary?
Read it and remember that crush of yours!
10. The Husband’s Secret – Liane Moriarty
I was pleasantly surprised by this one. It was supposed to be a dark thriller, but as you proceed through the book you’ll find a lot of emotions playing through.
The story has been told from the POV of three women and how ultimately their lives converge. The writing style is interesting and keeps your gripped. The start is a little slow, but it does pick up well.
I like how relationships and friendships are handled. Grief has been expressed so well, it is so relatable. The thrill aspect is less, but the emotional upheaval makes up for it.
11. Lies – T M Mogan
A great thriller – fast paced, full of twists, and keeps you guessing. It makes you think how vulnerable we’ve all made our lives thanks to social media. The premise of the book is based on lies, and I’ll not reveal much because that will spoil the fun of reading. Pick this one up if you want a quick read and a thriller that’ll keep you awake all night.
12. Between Shades of Gray – Ruta Sepetys
Moving on, from thrillers to historical fiction… I haven’t read a lot from this genre, but I know for sure this one is brilliant. It is devastating yet empowering at the same time.
The story is set during World War II and is based on true events. A story about love, courage, and hope which triumphs in inhumane conditions. So cathartic yet the thread of hope ties you strongly. You empathize with the characters and can feel their pain. Death and disparity are overpowering, but you still feel hopeful about the characters. You’ll smile with them and surely cry a lot for them.
13. They Both Die At The End – Adam Silvera
2017 has been such a diverse reading year and I am quite happy about it. Read a lot of LGBT books, and this is one of them. The story is set in a dystopian world. It is about Mateo and Rufus, who get a call from DeathCast telling both of them that they’re going to die within 24 hours.
Using an app Last Friend they connect with each other and their journey begins. The story traces their friendship, fears, and love. The essence of the premise is death, but it is presented in such a positive manner. Finding friendship and love on the last day of your life and craving for some more time, you can feel their helplessness. As the title suggests they do die at the end, but how they lived that one day makes a huge impact.
14. A Quiet Kind of Thunder – Sara Barnard
A fluffy contemporary which is a lot deeper than just YA feels. The story traces Stefii (a selective mute and has anxiety) and her new classmate Rhys (deaf). They talk through sign language and develop a strong friendship.
From being friends to a little more and finally being in a relationship, they grow and find themselves. It’s amazing to read how they try to overcome their flaws, but never hide them. The writing style is easy, the love story is cringy and cute in the best way possible.
15. Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe – Benjamin Alire Saenz
Saved the best for the last! This is the best book I’ve read in 2017. It is so good, I was in tears all through. Ari and Dante are so real, I don’t know whom do I love more.
It’s a heartwarming story about love, friendship, and finding yourself. They become friends and begins the journey of finding the secrets of the universe. Such overflow of emotions. The magic of words and the feels, it is just perfect.
If you’re looking for a strong and emotional LGBT book, I highly recommend this one…
Let me know if you’ve read any of these and loved. Also tell me which are your favorite books of 2017!
It’s time to wake up, because it’s September already!
I have missed posting TBR lists, so this time starting the month on a bookish note. This is my September TBR and I am hoping to tick them all off by the end of the month.
1.In the Miso Soup – Ryu Murakami
If you’re someone who enjoys Japanese literature, then you should definitely give this a try. I love reading Japanese thrillers and this is great addition to the list. I am almost halfway through the book, and so far it’s been quite engrossing.
2. The Husband’s Secret – Liane Moriaty
After reading so many good things about this one, I had to add it to this month’s TBR. This month I am trying to take a break from my favorite YA (young adult) reading. This one is a much loved thriller and I am hoping it lives up to all the hype.
3. Mrs. Funnybones – Twinkle Khanna
If you’re looking for something light and witty, then this is the perfect choice. I started it last month, but didn’t read it at one go. Planning to read it in between the heavy reading and relishing the unabashed sarcasm and intelligent humor!
4. The Sun is also a Star – Nicola Yoon
Read Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon a couple of months back and I quite liked it. So I am looking forward to reading this one as well. The story is about a girl and a guy and their not so usual love story!
Let me know what all do you have in your September TBR. Until next time, happy reading!
“Let the rain wash away, all the pain of yesterday!”
Rains are God sent gifts for booknerds like you and me. The enticing weather calls for reading something deep, heartwarming, and mollifying.
Its monsoon in most parts of the country, so I thought it would be a good time to inspire you with some of my favorite monsoon books. Read on to find out which ones made it to the list…
1.Those Pricey Thakur Girls – Anuja Chauhan
On a gloomy rainy day when you need extra doze of happiness, you should be reading Anuja Chauhan’s work. This particular one is like the spicy chutney that makes samosas all the more delectable.
It is full of sassy feels and bitchy scenes – just what you need to cheer you. And add to it the backdrop of ‘Saddi Dilli’.
2. And the Mountains Echoed – Khaled Hosseini
It is so difficult to select one Khaled Hosseini book. All his books are masterpieces!
And the Mountains Echoed is a heart wrenching story of finding a lost piece of yourself in someone else. Just like all his books, this one is also emotional yet warm and fuzzy.
The Afghan essence and the traditional Hosseini touch make it memorable. Cuddle up in bed with it and your long rainy weekend will be sorted.
3. Norwegian Wood – Haruki Murakami
“Time flows in a strange way on Sundays” – Murakami
Whether it is a Sunday on a hot summer afternoon or a rainy Wednesday night, Murakami needs no season. But truth be told, there is an inevitable charm of reading his work in monsoons.
Gloomy outside , gloomy inside – he forces you to look beyond to find light. Major parts of this book are about death and tragedy, yet it has this sprinkling of positive energy. His beautiful writing is the highlight.
It’s encouraging to read how the characters liberate themselves and trace the path from their world to the so called normal world.
4. The Girl with All the Gifts – M.R. Carey
For me monsoons are synonymous with goth feels and mysterious moods. Matching the vibe perfectly is this eerie read!
It is a tale of zombies in post apocalyptic world. Epic gruesome, gripping, and very engaging. The writing style is fresh and the plot is interesting – perfect example of a page turner.
If you love dark thrillers, you should add this to your ‘To-Read’ list….
5. Honor – Elif Shafak
I am including all deep heavy reads for monsoons! Honor is a beautiful book; it made me a fan of Elif Shafak’s work. It’s so deep and soul stirring. Love, loss, and a rainbow of other emotions are personified to perfection.
Spanning across 3 generations, this one is a complex tale of relationships, honor, forgiveness, and emotional upheaval.
Like after the rain the world seems fresh and green, Honor will make your heart feel the same. And the Turkish flavor matches the soothing petrichor pleasures.
Let me know what is on your reading list for monsoons, and if you have a favorite monsoon read.
Until next time, enjoy the rains, relish yummy chai – pakode, and of course keep coming back!