Monday, July 25, 2011

Un peu de Paradis :)

Nouvelle Vague & Vanessa Paradis - ''Couleurs sur Paris'' (2010) - ''Week-end à Rome''

Asculta mai multe audio pop

Monday, July 18, 2011

Man and Wife

"The stars are like photographs. You can read into them what you will. You can believe that they measure all you have lost, or you can believe that they represent all you have loved, and continue to love."

"Life holds hostage all those we love."

"It was all or nothing with this woman. That's why I loved her - and I can say that now. I loved her. But she wasn't cut out for an affair. The right girl in so many ways, she was the wrong girl to play that role. She was a romantic. Say what you like about those starry - eyed souls, about the upheaval and destruction they always leave in their wake, but there is one thing about romantics that nobody can deny. They never settle for second best."

"Sometimes we have to stay away from the things we love, and learn to appreciate the things we need."

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Oranges ARE the Only Fruit :)

To play with Jeanette Winterson's words, this month you can only have oranges... No, I am not imposing on you to only eat oranges, but to only read books that were longlisted, shortlisted or winners of the Orange Prize for Fiction. The lists of books are on the side bar, and you can find more information on the Orange Prize here.
The Orange Prize is all about women writers and the books that you can discover are fascinating: "Gut Symmetries" or "The Powerbook" (Jeanette Winterson), "Girl with a Pearl Earring" (Tracy Chevalier), "The Lovely Bones" (Alice Sebold), "The Time Traveler's Wife" (Audrey Niffenegger) and the list can go on.
I have read books nominated long before knowing about the prize, but a few weeks ago I discovered there's an Orange January/July challenge and I am taking part right at this very moment, reading "The Night Watch", by Sarah Waters.
Hopefully, the next one will be "The History of Love" :)

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

The Ice Man

"When I cry, the ice man kisses my cheek, and my tears turn to ice. He takes those frozen teardrops in his hand and puts them on his tongue. "See how I love you," he says. He is telling the truth."

Once you rediscover Murakami, there is no going back. :)

"The Ice Man" is a story that you can't forget easily. It's about love that persists below zero degrees. It starts in a ski resort, with HER being drawn towards HIM.
“…I couldn’t help myself. I had to talk to him. This was my last night in the hotel and if I let this chance pass I probably would never have another."

After dating every week in Tokyo, talking only about her, they finally fall in love and decide to get married.
“I fell deeply in love with him, and he came to love me, the present me, apart from any past or future. And I came to love the Ice Man for who he is now, apart from any past or future…the Ice Man was the first person I’d ever truly loved”
Because no one accepts the Ice Man, and by consequence the narrator, she does not have friends or family to talk to, so loneliness invades her.
The story ends “in the coldest, loneliest place in the world”, the South Pole, where she eventually discovers that her heart is frozen, and also that... but here's the whole story. Enjoy! :)

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Sputnik Sweetheart

"I dream. Sometimes I think that's the only right thing to do."

My first encounter with Haruki Murakami happened years ago, when I was offered two of his books, "The Elephant Vanishes" and "A Wild Sheep Chase". I liked them, but I also found them a bit strange and I wasn't very eager to go back to other works. That was until I decided to read "Norwegian Wood" for The Japanese Literature Challenge (and discovered that there's a Murakami Challenge taking place as well)but things almost never turn out as planned, so I started reading "Sputnik Sweetheart" instead and I was MESMERIZED. Sure, different times, different self, but what an incredible writer I have rediscovered!!!!

"And it came to me then. That we were wonderful traveling companions but in the end no more than lonely lumps of metal in their own separate orbits. From far off they look like beautiful shooting stars, but in reality they're nothing more than prisons, where each of us is locked up alone, going nowhere. When the orbits of these two satellites of ours happened to cross paths, we could be together. Maybe even open our hearts to each other. But that was only for the briefest moment. In the next instant we'd be in absolute solitude. Until we burned up and became nothing."

Murakami's writing is quite different from that of a European writer and the way he takes you into the story and leaves you to wander between the real and the surreal is truly unique.
The story is about Sumire, a twenty two year old girl, with plans to become a (famous) writer and K., her best friend and madly in love with Sumire but whose love is never returned. Once Sumire meets Miu, a sophisticated businesswoman, the plot starts to develop and we find Sumire drawn towards Miu, while K. is the spectator of their (strange) relationship. The love traingle turns into a mystery when Sumire suddenly disappears on a Greek island and Miu calls K. to help find her. This is the moment when K. discovers things "out of this world" about Miu and a possible answer to Sumire's disappearance.

"So that's how we live our lives. No matter how deep and fatal the loss, no matter how important the thing that's stolen from us--that's snatched right out of our hands--even if we are left completely changed, with only the outer layer of skin from before, we continue to play out our lives this way, in silence. We draw ever nearer to the end of our allotted span of time, bidding it farewell as it trails off behind. Repeating, often adroitly, the endless deeds of the everyday. Leaving behind a feeling of immeasurable emptiness."

Murakami gave the story such a surprising ending when six months later Sumire calls just to say “Hey, I’m back. Come and get me.”, then the phone cuts off. Is it a hallucination or Sumire is really back, and back from where exactly?
I found the whole story intriguing and it left me thinking if such things are possible... What things? Well, you'll have to read the novel if you want to know more.:)

"The answer is dreams. Dreaming on and on. Entering the world of dreams and never coming out. Living in dreams for the rest of time."