Monday, February 17, 2014

toilettereads: The comfort of kitchens and cats and other stories

There's something about me that you need to know, and that's the fact that I have hoarding tendencies. PFFT betcha you already knew that, so this is totes old news.

But anyway. Usually, towards the end of the year, I end up hoarding a lot of books, mostly thanks to Christmas money. Except this time, for some ungodly reason, the hoarding has not stopped. It's already February, and my pile of unread books has just grown. I won't disclose just how many, but it's probably enough to last me the year (or over.)

I'm pretty sure I've been hoarding books a lot now because of my long struggle in finding a copy of Battle Royale some time ago. (Long story short: I found a copy of the book, didn't get it because it was damaged, struggled to find another copy for the next 9 months. THEN SUDDENLY THERE'S BEEN AN ABUNDANCE EVER SINCE HUNGER GAMES WEEP.) Something similar happened a while later with Parasite Eve, and while it wasn't as severe, both instances have probably already left me scarred. Ever since then, I always think I might regret not buying a book once it has caught my interest because I may never see it again. So sums up my book hoarding.

That, and there's just something so comforting about being surrounded by books. I've had to make a conscious effort to stop myself from entering book stores now because I am SO BROKE AND I BECOME EVEN BROKER AFTER STEPPING INSIDE A BOOKSTORE. It is horribru.

One of my resolutions is to finish at least two books a month. That number may or may not be pushing it, depending on my own availability (because, for all I know, I may not have as much time for recreational reading as I think I do), but it's a start. Once upon a time I read with so much fervor, but somewhere down the road of high school, that flame flickered and I became lazy for some reason. As much as I want to get back into the groove of reading without any hiccups, I've just become much more distracted over the years, so this resolution is my attempt at focusing more on my stack of books than, say, the internet. (As of this post, I haven't been doing a very good job.)

Honeymoon and Other Stories was a fast read. I don't hold any special feelings for it, but I guess it's a good companion for killing time, like most short story collections. I think I just have a natural inclination towards short stories, as they're an easy read. There wasn't anything special about this book though; I mean, none of the stories particularly struck me with EUREKA or anything I could emotionally invest myself to.

I've always heard of Banana Yoshimoto, and I think I saw a copy of one of her books here once, but I never really tried her out until I found this in Hong Kong from my last trip. Now that I think about it, I hardly ever see any Banana Yoshimoto books here anymore. Kitchen is her first book, and it has a lot of themes of coping with the death of a loved one and seeking comfort in those who share your pain. I wanna try out more Banana Yoshimoto, but the thing is finding another book of hers here is pretty rare.

Is my cat lady showing yet? The Cats of Moon Cottage is about a feline-loving couple and how their older cat adapts to their latest kitten. I was practically crying towards the end of the book because of what happened, and it made me want to give Tofu a really big hug, except he was hiding elsewhere in the house. I sort of cheated with counting this one in the January pile because I started reading it last November, but I didn't take it with me when I went traveling so I only got to finish it last month.

I think sharing what you read to the world is similar to having your iTunes library out in the open: both collections say a lot about you, I guess. I dunno what kind of person my iTunes makes me though as it's mostly Japanese with a side of Korean and just a cup full of English.

Anyway, I dunno, letting people in on what you read feels like you're opening up yourself to a lot of scrutiny. I mean, like music elitists who take a glimpse at your iTunes and sneer at your taste (or in my case, lack thereof) in music, letting people know what you read almost feels like informing them of your intelligence level and reading capabilities. I dunno. I used to read a LOT of chicklit when I was younger, so does that say something about myself? I like children's books; does that make me immature? I have this unhealthy obsession with reading books by Japanese authors/books set in Japan; does that make me a... wait what does that even make me?

Actually, I really don't know where I'm getting at here HAHAHA. I'm taking steps towards trying to make myself more literate (I promise I'm a lot smarter than what my Twitter sounds like); my vocabulary is hardly what one would consider broad, and that makes me disappointed in myself sometimes. Also, whenever I try to go all ~*~srs bznz~*~ in my blog posts, I tend to make a u-turn and go all derpy and sarcastic again. I guess it's just not in my 'blogging personality,' so to say, to be all dramatic-sounding with inspirational words that get your minds all tingly. I guess I'm just more casual when it comes to blogging and stuff, as I've always been over the years. No biggie. I like my 'blogging voice' as it is SHRUG SHRUG TL;DR I HOARD BOOKS AND IMMA SHARE WHAT I'VE BEEN READING LATELY!!!!!

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