Reading List | Books I've Read And Loved
It was as an English major in college that I noticed my pattern when it came to my relationship with books. Sometimes I had to juggle reading three novels at one time within a one-week period in addition to guided reading in my other classes outside of my major. The more it became a neccessity for me to read, the less I had a desire to do it. My for-pleasure reads has suffered drastically since then and I've noticed that as stress takes a step in, the less I tend to reach out and grab for a book in my free time.
But, lately, I've felt a reinvigorated desire to read in my down time. I've made a promise to myself that I have to read at least one new book every month. That way I've set a goal that I am challenged to do, but without the pressure of biting more than I know I am capable of chewing. I decided to jumpstart my talks of monthly reads on my blog by talking about some of my favorite all-time reads.
My favorites are typically ever-changing and that is a truth that does not lose its relevance, no matter the subject matter. So that extends to the books I love as well.
Currently, these are the books that I've been loving:
Love In My Language x Alexandra Elle | The level of inspiration I receive from Ms. Elle is never-ending. I have been smitten by her ever since I came across her on Tumblr years ago, first for her hair, and second, for her words. I read her first book and found love, but it grew deeper when I read her second book. It was more mature, she was more sure of herself as a writer, and the transparency I felt among those pages is something that I revisit. We are all different beings, but we are all human, and a lot of our experiences are things that we can connect with because of their similarities. Her book reestablished that for me in a healing way. I revisit it often.
Steal Like An Artist x Austin Kleon | I finished this book within an hour of reading it, but it's one of those books that support the things you probably already know you should be doing, but haven't yet done. It gives support to your intuition and your gut feeling, which are two things that often get ignored, especially when the mind has something to say. I think every artist should read this because it's reaffirming to the struggle and the lifestyle.
Animal Farm x George Orwell | Truly one of my all-time favorites. I read this in middle school and have loved it ever since. I try to read it again every year because it's a pretty easy read. It's a dystopian and allegorical novella that starts with animals on a farm seeing the evil ways of humans and agreeing that they can do a better job of leading and governing themselves without them. They take over the farm and put the pigs in charge due to their intelligence and place of system of seven commandments. As the story unfolds, the story reveals the superiority complex in the nature of some animals who turn into the very thing they fought against.
The Alchemist x Paulo Coelho | A favorite of many and rightfully so. I discovered it when I was in my The Jonas Brothers fangirl phase and Joe mentioned that it was one of his favorite books. I said to myself, "Hmmm." It's a story of self-discovery through the eyes of an Andalusian shepherd and his journey to Egypt after having a prophetic dream of finding treasure there. Along the way he learns to follow his Personal Legend by listening to the Soul of the World. It's about pursuing your purpose and as the old king tells Santiago, "when you really want something to happen, the whole universe will conspire so that your wish comes true."
Song of Solomon x Toni Morrison | I think out of any writer whose works I've ever read, Morrison is the closest to being considered my favorite. I have read the bulk of her works, some I've loved, others I can do without. But even with the ones I didn't care so much for, I was so captured by her engrossing storytelling. Song of Solomon was nothing short of that. One of my English professors put me on as one of our required novels for the semester and I am so glad she did. As I write this entry right after I wrote the last one, I am taking note of my adoration for self discovery as it relates to boys becoming men. Song of Solomon goes through the life of its protoganist Macon "Milkman" Dead III from birth to adulthood. I appreciated his growth into a man, particularly as a black man who is trying to find himself by himself for himself. It's impeccably written and is why Morrison and this book will always have a place in my favorites.
She Comes First x Ian Kerner | I've read the male counterpart to She Comes First in addition to this book, and I must say that they are two of my favorite reads that highlight and honor how to pleasure your partner. I love reading about sex and sexuality, especially in male-female relationships. Sex is beautiful to me and natural and I loved having a lot of my views on sex reaffirmed by the knowledge Kerner teaches in this book. I should always come first. Every woman deserves that. So it's a read I recommend for you and your partner.
Americanah x Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie | Adichie is a Nigerian writer whose prose and storytelling remind me of the beauty I feel whenever I open and read a Morrison novel, but more poetic. Americanah is a love story between two people that tackles the subject of race and identity through the lenses of Ifemelu and Obinze, the former who goes to America and the latter who lands in London. After 15 years, they return to Nigeria and reignite their love for their homeland and one another in the process.
Passionista x Ian Kerner | Passionista is the male counterpart to the previous book centered around the female body and the female orgasm. It focuses on the male anatomy, how to pleasure him, and enhance your know-how of his physicality. I revisit this book often because I have my old faithful methods when it comes to pleasuring men, so I like knowing of the other erogenous zones that I can visit on a male's anatomy. While the best teacher is experience, I also believe in supplementing experience with book knowledge.
What are some of your favorite books to read?