I’ve recently come to realise I have so much catch up to do with fiction it’s scary. To give you an idea, I have yet to read some of the most talked-about books of the last years. “The Book Thief”, “Wolf Hall”, “1Q84”, “White Teeth”, “Solar” are just some of the titles gathering dust on my Goodreads to-read shelf since forever. I have never been what you would call a mainstream reader, but the state I’m in is truly appalling.
Before I hit 20, I was mainly into classics. By the time I was 18 or so, I had read so much Austen, Dostoevsky, Tolstoy, Dickens, Henry James, Hugo, the Bronte Sisters, Goethe, Fitzgerald, and so on there were few good titles actually left in that area. Not to mention the “original” classics in the form of ancient Greek and Roman authors. So I decided to branch out a bit and started dipping into the 20th century literature. A whole new world opened before me and the possibilities became endless. I began devouring Marquez, Rushdie, Ishiguro, Sartre, Cunningham, Nabokov, Orwell, Bulgakov, Murakami, and the likes. Life got brutally in the way at some point and I found myself downsizing from two or three books a week to two books a month, if that.
I’m now approaching 30 at a fast pace and even though I played catch up with a number of books and remained somewhat connected to what was new and worthy of reading, I still haven’t managed to return to the two to three books per week mark. The good thing though is that there are no longer things in my life that prevent me from reading as much as I want, so I’ve decided that from now on, there is only one reason for not reading constantly, and that is pure laziness. So I am currently in the process of brushing up my Goodreads account, which I’ve always considered a splendid idea, but never got round to actually use it. When I was younger, I always had to-read lists somewhere on my desk and I would have killed for something like Goodreads, by the way.
And since it’s sharing time, one of the things I actually regret not doing is keeping a book log or journal of some sort over the years. There are so many books I loved, books that inspired me, books that I was jealous I wasn’t the author of, but when I think about them, I can only remember the way I felt reading them, not the actual story. This is truly frustrating for me, as I have revolved most of my life around books and I’ve got nothing to show for it. If book-blogging were a thing 15 years ago, I would have probably been on top of it. But I’m starting now. I’ll try to document the books I read in a way that will make me remember them 20 years from now. I am currently reading Alice Munro’s “Dear Life” and hopefully I’ll come up with a review in a couple of days.