bookiful.life bookiful.life

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𝕐 𝔸 𝔻 𝕀 | Chicago  Reading and talking about books. bookiful.life@gmail.com

[#partner]”Perhaps this is why, even though I have always considered myself an introvert, I love talking to people who go straight to the heart of their stories, who tell me their deepest truths. I don’t want to know where you went to school or what you do for a living as much as I want to know what happened to you and who you think you are as a result. I want to know what you have built with the sticks and stones you were given. My writing has always come out of longing for the real thing: the blood and ore of the human experience. I want to know how we are all related.”
— Rebecca Walker, from her essay Legacy I’m Well-Read Black Girl: Finding Our Stories, Discovering Ourselves

When I read that passage, I felt it hard. It described me so well. To know that another human being can describe the way I feel to such accuracy gives me comfort and makes me feel connected to others...that’s why I love reading.
I highly recommend Well-Read Black Girl. It’s a collection of essays written by legendary and super talented black women about how they were able to find themselves through literature and how it shaped their lives.
Though this book is about black women, as a Latina woman, I can still strongly relate to this collection. I grew up reading books that never truly represented me or my background yet still I was able to find myself through literature and even more so when I began to read books by Latina women.
Reading this collection made me think back on my own story of falling in love with reading... I began to write about those early days...it was a beautiful to travel back in mind to those moments.
This book includes so many book lists and recommendations...some I haven’t read and some I’d like to reread because it’s been too long since I have...I might give in and start with Toni Morrison.

What are your early memories of falling in love with reading/books?✨

[many thanks to @randomhouse for this gifted copy.]

“On the day when it will be possible for woman to love not in her weakness but in her strength, not to escape herself but to find herself, not to abase herself but to assert herself--on that day love will become for her, as for man, a source of life and not of mortal danger.”
— Simone de Beauvoir

Just here obsessing over Simone de Beauvoir...

“By the age of twenty, Simone de Beauvoir had chosen a path that she increasingly realized would condemn her to loneliness. ‘I can’t get rid of this idea that I am alone, in the world apart, being present at the other as at a spectacle,’ she wrote in her journal. ‘This morning… I passionately wish to be the girl who takes communion at the morning mass and walks in the swing certainty… The Catholicism of Mauriac, of Claudel, … how it’s marked me, and what place there it is in me for it! And yet I do not…wish to believe: an act of faith is the most despairing act there is and I want my despair to at least keep it’s lucidity. I do not want to lie to myself.’”
— Tête-à-tête: The Tumultuous Lives & Loves Of Simone de Beauvoir & Jean-Paul Sartre

This is super relatable for me. Ugh, reading this book makes me wanna reread Memoirs of a Dutiful Daughter by Simone. The way she speaks of herself and her choices, that self-awareness and determination, especially in the times she lived when women were expected to be a certain way, is inspirational but also for myself, it reassures me that I am fine in my unconventional life choices.
There isn’t a life plan that fits everyone. Just live the life you wanna live.🖤

“Beauvoir lent Maheu a recent English novel she had enjoyed, The Green Hat, by Michael Arlen. She admired its independent heroine, Iris Storm. Maheu did not. 'I have no liking for women of easy virtue,' he told her. 'Much as I like a woman to please me, I find it impossible to respect any woman I've had.' Beauvoir was indignant. 'One does not have an Iris Storm!”
— Hazel Rowley, Tête-à-Tête: The Tumultuous Lives and Loves of Simone de Beauvoir and Jean-Paul Sartre

I’m all about badass women... and Simone de Beauvoir is a favorite of mine.
Currently reading a ton of books at once but, damn it, that’s just who I am.
Side thought...
A couple of month ago I met someone who has made an impact in my creative life. Since I met this person, I’ve been writing a lot more and feeling a lot more... I am not entirely sure or perhaps I’m a bit afraid to think about what it all means or what it is but for now I’m just enjoying the abundance of inspiration it’s bringing me.

What has brought you inspiration, lately? ✨

“What tethers me to my parents is the unspoken dialogue we share about how much of my character is built on the connection I feel to the world they were raised in but that I've only experienced through photos, visits, food. It's not mine and yet, I get it. First-generation kids, I've always thought, are the personification of déjà vu.”
— Durga Chew-Bose, Too Much and Not the Mood

There is so much from this book that I just relate to, so hard. Even just the dreamy way Durga sees the world, I relate to...

[#partner] “Because when I read, I don't really read; I pop a beautiful sentence into my mouth and suck it like a fruit drop, or I sip it like a liqueur until the thought dissolves in me like alcohol, infusing brain and heart and coursing on through the veins to the root of each blood vessel.” ― Bohumil Hrabal, Too Loud a Solitude

“Life was neither something you defended by hiding nor surrendered calmly on other people's terms, but something you lived bravely, out in the open, and that if you had to lose it, you should lose it on your own terms.” ― Edwidge Danticat, The Dew Breaker

I was recently gifted @theboxwalla October Literature Box but I knew I didn’t want to post about it until I had first read the books in the box because I wanted to be able to give genuine feedback.
So, check out my blog for the full post {link in bio or swipe up in my stories}. 💖
#boxwallabook #boxwalla

“There’s strength in observing one’s miniaturization. That you are insignificant and prone to, and God knows, dumb about a lot. Because doesn’t smallness prime us to eventually take up space? For instance, the momentum gained from reading a great book. After after, sitting, sleeping, living in its consequence. A book that makes you feel, finally, latched on.”
— Durga Chew-Bose, Too Much and Not the Mood

“I had a nice feeling of sharing, so when they asked me whether I had anything else to say I told them that in the beginning you understand the world but not yourself, and when you finally understand yourself you no longer understand the world.”
— Mary Ruefle, My Private Property

I am obsessed with the way Durga Chew-Bose sees the world...
I’m also rereading Mary Ruefle’s My Private Property because I had missed it. 💙

“There are things people just don’t talk about. I don’t mean the hard things, like love, but the awkward ones, like how funerals are fun sometimes or how it’s exciting to watch buildings burning. Michael’s funeral was wonderful.”
— Lucia Berlin, Evening in Paradise: More Stories

“A woman carries her inner life - lugs it around or holds it in fumes that both poison and bless her - while nourishing another's inner life, many others actually, while never revealing too much madness, or, possibly, never revealing where she stores it: her island of lost mind.”
— Durga Chew-Bose, Too Much and Not the Mood: Essays

Currently reading from two books written by two extraordinary women who write about the inner lives of women in such a real and intimate and unique way. I am mesmerized. 💜💛
[thank you to @fsgbooks for gifting me Evening in Paradise✨]

This little corner of mine came out of my desire to connect with others on books. I don’t always know what I’ll post nor do I have an idea of what this account is or will be. I just know I like to nerd out on books and take photos of them. I’m a big fan of taking photos, actually.
Anyway, this morning I’m stuck inside, in bed reading, desperately hoping to feel better because I have exciting events happening tonight...

Last night at the book launch for Maryse Meijer’s NORTHWOOD, she shared with us the poetry pieces that most inspired her to write Northwood. Pieces she read were...Brier Rose (Sleeping Beauty) by Anne Sexton, Change from Autobiography of Red by Anne Carson, Cargo, Islands, Shores from Raptus by Joanna Klink, and Nobel Dog from Headwaters by Ellen Bryant Voigt.
Also, Maryse’s twin sister, Danielle, performed a beautiful dance inspired by Northwood.
It all took place at @thedialbookshop, probably the most beautiful bookstore in Chicago.
The night was truly magical and inspiring.✨🖤

« C’est un jour comme celui-ci, un peu plus tard, un peu plus tôt, que tu découvres sans surprise que quelque chose ne va pas, que, pour parler sans précautions, tu ne sais pas vivre, que tu ne sauras jamais. »
("It is on a day like this one, a little later a little earlier that you discover without surprise that something is wrong that you don't know how to live and you will never know”)
― Georges Perec, Un homme qui dort

I’ve been reading Un homme qui dort by Georges Perec for a while now. This is how I practice my french since there’s no other real way for me to practice it.
This is the kind of existential read that I just adore. The existential dread of a student in Paris... nothing happens is the point of this story yet the attention to detail that Perec gives reinforces that point so well.
Forever grateful to Oni @booksandcoffeestains for gifting it to me while I was in Paris earlier this year. 💖

“It's the men who don't even know themselves that wish you harm - those are the most dangerous ones. They will have you cower in the name of love, and feel sentimental about it. They're the ones who hate women the most.”
— Sophie Mackintosh, The Water Cure

I am not sure how I feel about this read yet. But it’s definitely making me think...
This would make a great book club or book discussion read...

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