Updated Bookshelf Tour

Happy World Book Day! In celebration of this literary event, I thought I’d take you on a little tour around my bookshelves. Please buckle your seatbelt and don’t stick your hands out the windows.

Since my last bookshelf tour, my shelves have gone through quite an overhaul:

  • Last year, I moved out of student accommodation after graduating, which meant all of my books were in one place once more. This forced me to go through a rigorous rearranging process to accommodate all the new arrivals.
  • I donated a significant part of my collection, after admitting that I probably wasn’t getting around to reading about 5,000* books (*mild exaggeration, but still).
  • Still, my collection ended up essentially doubling — not only did I go to the 2019 Kolkata International Book Fair, but I also lived near secondhand bookshops all throughout 2018, which was a bad idea (or a really good one, depending on how you see it).
  • Cue more rearranging, squeezing books onto shelves and strategically disguising stacks around my room.

And here is the final result, after months weeks okay, days of hard work. To clarify, I have two bookshelves, and I’ll be referring to them as “the first shelf” and “the second shelf” throughout for clarity (or lack thereof).

Tier 1

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I decided to stick with the colour coordination, as the amount of effort it took me the first time around still hasn’t paid off. The first tier on my first shelf houses all the dark titles (not necessarily only because of their covers — please note the copy of Perfume by Patrick Suskind, which gives me the creeps, and a collection of Roald Dahl’s short stories).

Front and centre is a special edition of Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine by Gail Honeyman– i.e. proof of my lack of self control when it comes to beautiful books (I already own a copy of this book, but apparently that wasn’t enough).

And yes, that’s a photo of a goat with a Santa hat on the second shelf. No, I don’t care to explain.

Tier 2

Notable new additions to tier two of the first shelf include Lullaby by Leila Slimani and The Romanovs: 1613-1918 by Simon Sebag Montefiore, which I bought after visiting an exhibit on the Romanovs at the Science Museum in London.

On the second bookshelf, the next two levels hold the blue/purple titles, and yet more proof that beautiful books are the bane of my existence (please take a moment to appreciate the masterpiece that is The Binding.)

Tier 3

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Next up, we have a bit of an ombre and a gorgeous edition of Inkspell (are you noticing a pattern here?). I saved some flowers from a bouquet I got for my birthday, which now find a home here as well.

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Tier 4

The final tier in the first bookshelf has some more beautiful editions, including A Journey to the Center of the Earth with gold sprayed edges (which I got for one pound?!) and an illustrated version of How to Stop Time by Matt Haig.

On the corresponding levels on the second shelf, there is the absolute GIANT The Priory of the Orange Tree by Samantha Shannon — which I was dumb enough to buy at the airport and then had to lug around for the rest of my journey — and, to be honest, any books that wouldn’t fit anywhere else.


If you’ve stuck with me this far, I thank you wholeheartedly for reading. I’m happy to chat if you have any thoughts, and once again, happy World Book Day!

Until next time!

a letter to delhi

delhi, you are a ghost. I hear your voice — conversations I can’t tune out, the auto rickshaws’ whirring motor, songs on night time radio. and I feel your stare on my face, brazen, burning.

you see me, but I can’t see you.

your every turn is the same. you are strangers’ fingers on my shoulders, the push and pull of a tide of bodies driving me to the edge of myself. you are streets I can never know in the dark, where home is a hotel and an address I can’t remember.

your grey sky is oppressive, an ever-present hold against my throat. your heat is a slap in the face when I can only turn the other cheek, your constant scream of traffic a sound that never fades to the background.

the only you I grasp for is a you that no longer exists, stored away in the memory of a me that no longer exists. and as you go, you take parts of me with you.

the sleepy afternoons on the school bus home, the weekends spent riding my bicycle with training wheels on. the exhilaration of making the turn on the twisty slide at the playground, and the cool breeze in my face at the back of the auto rickshaw.

the only comfort remaining is the bitter trace you leave behind. while I can’t love you again, at least hatred is only a step away from the love I used to feel, back when you were my whole world.

with you, hate is as close as I’ll ever come to love.


Header image Aquib Akhter on Unsplash.

Sleepy Sunday: Sunshine Blogger Award

An embarrassingly long time ago, I was nominated for the Sunshine Blogger Award by Elizabeth at Echo Edition. The aim of the award is to spread love and support in the blogging community. Thank you for nominating me, Elizabeth!

To do:

  • Thank the person who nominated you and provide a link back to their blog so others can find them.
  • Answer the 11 questions asked by the blogger who nominated you.
  • Nominate 11 other bloggers and ask them 11 new questions.
  • Notify the nominees about it on one of their own posts.
  • List the rules and display the Sunshine Blogger Award logo on your post and/or your blog site.

Questions

What inspires you?
Inspiration is everywhere if I look hard enough: in passersby, in snippets of conversations, even sitting at my desk at work everyday (if I look really hard). That being said, books inspire me the most.

What is the last book you read?
Every Exquisite Thing by Matthew Quick. I was mostly underwhelmed by it, and sometimes it was quite obvious that a man was behind the female protagonist’s voice. But overall, there were a few moments of clarity.

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What do you love that you rarely, if ever, mention on your blog?
K-pop. A while ago, I realised that English-language media has mostly been the default in my life. It’s nice to diversify and discover content that wouldn’t otherwise have been on my radar.

Continue reading “Sleepy Sunday: Sunshine Blogger Award”