Pssst, it's World Book and Copyright Day!

Actually I didn't know, and I just discovered. I did know about an event here in Denmark (Danmark Læser, read more here), but not that it was part of an international event!

Reading is one of my absolute favorite pastimes, and I can safely say that not many days in my life, since I learned how to read, has passed without reading. I did not grow up in a particularly intellectual home, and none of my parents were very enthusiastic readers, so I have no idea what lead me. Only that I have binge read myself through many a rainy day, sleepless night or dreary holiday in my childhood, and I just never stopped. I practically only read fiction, and if I read non fiction it is for work, or maybe the occasional autobiography (I have Barack Obama's 'Dreams From my Father' somewhere, and will definitely read it some day. Also Lena Dunham's 'Not That Kind of Girl' was lots of clever fun, and I plan on reading some more bios on one of my heroes: Astrid Lindgren).

To celebrate the day, here are five of my top reads from the last six months or so, I recommend them all with enthusiasm, read a bit more below the photo...

Click links in the text below, for more info on the books.

From top left: Marge Piercy's Braided Lives, I found on the recycle shelf in our local garbage recycle facility (I often find great things there, and also leave plenty of books for others). It was so good! First book by Marge Piercy I ever read. 

Donna Tartt only seems to write books you get completely swept away by, and The Goldfinch is no exception. Sad, but not as dark and uncomfortable as 'The Secret History', which is my favorite. Very, very entertaining. 

The French autobiographical novel, Delphine de Vigan's Nothing Holds back the Night (a portrait of the writer's emotionally unstable, self destructive, but also charming mother) was very well reviewed everywhere, and that just made me curious. It was moving, but what I really liked was that it was quite unsentimental, and yet so loving. It didn't bring tears to my eyes, until I reached the very last pages, but those pages were unforgettable. 

And then: Hemingway's collected short stories, such a classic. But actually not a writer I had read much of, and I didn't think I cared much for him. But last spring I fell in love with Key West, one of his many home towns, and visited his house and little museum there. I picked up 'The Sun also Rises' in the museum book shop, and that was it! That lead me to a rather extensive Hemingway binge, and this is the top edition of his short stories. This is in a class of it's own, especially as short story writing goes (I love reading short stories, and I love how you keep coming back to your favorites). Give the old sailor, war correspondent and compulsive womanizer a try, if you, as I, haven't before! He is so worth it.

The last one, Emma Donoghue's ROOM, is like nothing I have ever read before. The topic is very shocking and at times the story is almost physically upsetting to read. But - you will be richly rewarded. It is an amazing and beautiful book, one you will never forget.

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