Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Curl Up With a Good Book

While dancing is my main outlet for expressing my creativity, I would have to say that reading is the main way in which I charge my creative batteries. Nothing inspires or uplifts like a well-written and carefully constructed dosage of the English language. For almost a decade now I have been keeping a journal of books I've read. Looking back through the pages of my journals reminds me of the many journeys, adventures, and eye opening moments I've been on through my arm chair explorations. So if you need a good book to curl up with during these cold winter nights, here are a few of my recommendations pulled from my 2003 to 2010 journal:
  1. Eat Mangoes Naked by SARK: "You must live deeply all of your precious moments". This statement gives me chills. It resonates in very being. So simple, but so true. How many precious moments have I lost to stress and rushing and worries. The entire book is a reminder to slow-down and enjoy the little things.
  2. Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides: This is literature at its finest. Deep vivid characters flowing through a seamless plot wrapped in  language smooth as silk. Divine.
  3. The Harry Potter Series by J.K. Rowling: I don't think this one needs any explanation.
  4. The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle: Leave behind your analytical mind and connect with your Being. Breathe. Be still. Let go.
  5. The Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett: An epic of the middle-ages. The strength of the main female character will pull you in and keep you hungering for more.
  6. The Witch of Portobello by Paulo Coehlo: My favorite quote from the book - "I've accepted the blows that life has dealt me, and sometimes I feel as cold and indifferent as the water that inflicts such pain on the steel. But my one prayer is this: "Please God, my Mother, don't give up until I've taken on the shape that you wish for me. Do this by whatever means you think best, for as long as you like, but never throw me on the scrap heap of souls."" I read this and the beauty of it sticks thick in my throat.
  7. Mistress of Spices by Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni: The author's command of words and descriptions, bending them to her every whim and expression, is amazing. This book is depth and brightness, fluidity and motion.
  8. A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini: This story is an example of the amazing quality of the human spirit to rise up, to hope, and to love, even under immense suffering and unspeakable hardship. You will be grateful for what you have in your life. You will cry.
  9. Eat Pray Love by Elizabeth Gilbert: Been thinking about doing something extraordinary? Something adventurous? Let this book be the fuel for your fire.
  10. The Queen's Fool by Philippa Gregory: I think just about everyone has either read or seen Gregory's story The Other Boleyn Girl by now. But this lesser known one is, in my opinion, the better of the two.
  11. The Twilight Series by Stephanie Meyer: Okay, I admit it, the writing is not that great on this one and there's a certain cheese factor, but for a juicy, easy-to-read pager-turner, look no further.
  12. Saving Fish From Drowning by Amy Tan: Hands down one of the best writers of our time. This book is a study of human nature delivered only in a manner achievable by Tan.
All of these books are available on my Recommendations page. Happy reading!

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