Six degrees of separation:
from asking to spelling
Time for another quirky variation on this meme. I started with asking a question, making up the title we are supposed to begin with, and ended up with spelling.
Using my own rules for this fun meme hosted by Kate at Booksaremyfavouriteandbest (see there the origin of the meme and how it works – posted the first Saturday of every month).
Here are my own quirky rules:
1. Use your list of books on Goodreads
2. Take the first word of the title (or in the subtitle) offered and find another title with that word in it – see the titles below the images to fully understand, as often the word could be in the second part of the title
3. Then use the first word of THAT title to find your text title
4. Or the second if the title starts with the same word, or you are stuck
Click on the covers
links will send you to my review or to the relevant Goodreads page
1. What Are You Going Through, by Sigrid Nunez
I have not read this book, and probably will not.
“A woman describes a series of encounters she has with various people in the ordinary course of her life: an ex she runs into by chance at a public forum, an Airbnb owner unsure how to interact with her guests, a stranger who seeks help comforting his elderly mother, a friend of her youth now hospitalized with terminal cancer. In each of these people the woman finds a common need: the urge to talk about themselves and to have an audience to their experiences. The narrator orchestrates this chorus of voices for the most part as a passive listener, until one of them makes an extraordinary request, drawing her into an intense and transformative experience of her own.
In What Are You Going Through, Nunez brings wisdom, humor, and insight to a novel about human connection and the changing nature of relationships in our times. A surprising story about empathy and the unusual ways one person can help another through hardship, her book offers a moving and provocative portrait of the way we live now.”
2. Or What You Will, by Jo Walton
VERDICT from my 5 star review:
Unique fantasy love letter to the Renaissance. Luscious!
I so need to read more books by her!
3. Twelfth Night Or What You Will, by William Shakespeare
Jo Walton’s book got its title from this play, so the link was obvious.
A fun play that I read in 2012. Alas I didn’t review it. The disguise and quidproquo were great!
“Named for the twelfth night after Christmas, the end of the Christmas season, Twelfth Night plays with love and power. The Countess Olivia, a woman with her own household, attracts Duke (or Count) Orsino. Two other would-be suitors are her pretentious steward, Malvolio, and Sir Andrew Aguecheek.
Onto this scene arrive the twins Viola and Sebastian; caught in a shipwreck, each thinks the other has drowned. Viola disguises herself as a male page and enters Orsino’s service. Orsino sends her as his envoy to Olivia—only to have Olivia fall in love with the messenger. The play complicates, then wonderfully untangles, these relationships.”
4. The Lost Love Letters of Heloise and Abelard: Perceptions of Dialogue in Twelfth-Century France, by Constant J. Mews
Again, read in 2014, but not reviewed. This was a fabulous presentation of Héloïse’s and Abélard’s early love letters. Text and explanation. Loved it! If you love the Middle-Ages, you really need to read this one.
“This book examines a medieval text long neglected by most scholars. The Lost Love Letters of Heloise and Abelard looks at the earlier correspondence between these two famous individuals, revealing the emotions and intimate exchanges that occurred between them. The perspectives presented here are very different from the view related by Abelard in his “History of My Calamities,” an account which provoked a much more famous exchange of letters between Heloise and Abelard after they had both entered religious life.
Offering a full translation of the love letters along with a copy of the actual Latin text, Mews provides an in-depth analysis of the debate concerning the authenticity of the letters and look at the way in which the relationship between Heloise and Abelard has been perceived over the centuries. He also explores the political, literary, and religious contexts in which the two figures conducted their affair and offers new insights into Heloise as an astonishingly gifted writer, whose literary gifts were ultimately frustrated by the course of her relationship with her teacher.”
5. The Lost Spells, by Robert MacFarlane
My short Goodreads review:
This is a gorgeous book, with wonderful little poems, containing lots of plays on sounds, and fabulous illustrations. All about nature, birds, fox, etc. Really a gem.
Again, an author I really want to read more
6. The History of English Spelling, by Christopher Upward & George Davidson
For once, a book that’s on my TBR. I love books about languages.
“The History of English Spelling reveals the history of Modern English spelling, tracing its origins and development from Old English up to the present day.
Includes a wealth of information and data on English spelling not available anywhere else. Includes detailed coverage of the contributions from French, Latin, Greek – and the many other languages – to our current orthography Serves as a companion volume to Geoffrey Hughes’s A History of English Words in the same series.”