A short lists with books I’ve read in November 2013 (with short reviews) and books I’ve started reading in November 2013 but haven’t finished yet.
You might be surprised to see mostly books about Warsaw, and moreover in Polish. There are a couple of reasons for that, One of them is a feeling that I’ve somehow got disconnected from my roots after living in Indonesia for a year. I feel like I forgot too much about my hometown, which always interested me.Living in Indonesia made me realise how little I cared about my cultural background, living day by day in Poland. I’ve been interested in history for a long time, so I had some knowledge, sometimes maybe bit more than others, but suddenly in Indonesia I felt it’s not enough. I felt I forgot too much from the things I know. I also realised some other things, but that’ll be a topic for the future.
The books in the November list will mostly be about history of Warsaw. I’m from Warsaw, Poland and I’m proud of this. Even if the government doesn’t give me anything to be proud of. 😛
Continue reading to see the non-fiction books, folk tales and novels I selected to read in November. Hopefully the list will be inspiring for you.
Ordered by the titles. If not noted otherwise, the book is in Polish.
I’ve finished reading in November 2013:
- Bunbuku Chagama by Shogo Hirata is a classical Japanese folk tale, written and illustrated for children. It tells a story of a raccoon dog (tanuki) that can change its shape into a teapot. Tanuki tries to earn money in various ways to feed his family. An easy and fun reading both for children or foreigners learning Japanese. [JP]
- Dracula by Bram Stoker is a classical story about vampire. And a huge disappointment, that requires a long review. Originally written in English, but the one I borrowed from library was in Polish.
- Legendy warszawskie by Artur Oppman (Or-Ot) is an illustrated collection of folk tales from Warsaw. Warsaw mermaid, Warsaw basilisk killing people with its look and the golden duck are just a few of the characters in Warsaw folk stories. The legends still surface in Warsaw, being kept by the memory of people, symbols of the city (mermaid is in Warsaw’s coat of arms) and… shops sometimes. I’d recommend it to anybody who is interested in Polish folk tales (and can read Polish ;)) no matter the age.
- Off-Topic: The Story of an Internet Revolt is an ebook about latest GoodReads epic fail – censoring the reviews. Shows up mechanisms in current internet. A very interesting and informative read. Written in English. [ENG]
- Spacerkiem po Woli by Rafał Chwiszczuk and Tadeusz W. Świątek is a walking guide around Wola (one of the districts in Warsaw, my beloved district with which I have the strongest links, living most of my life there). The best part about it: interesting stories, lots of photos and a sample of Wola dialect. The worst part: too short. Written exclusively in Polish, but I recommend at least to see the photos. Available under the link in pdf format.
- Spojrzenia na Warszawę by Zbyszko Siemaszko is a photo album of Warsaw. Photos taken for around 40 years, starting after the Second World War. It was very interesting for me to see the photos of my town which I couldn’t see or remember due to my age.
- Warszawa nieznana by Jerzy Kasprzycki is a collection of short stories about life in Warsaw from 19th century to around 1980. I’ve already written a long review of Warszawa nieznana.
- W dawnych kawiarniach i cukierniach warszawskich by Wojciech Herbaczyński is a tale about old coffee and cake shops in Warsaw. Many of them were destroyed during the Second World War. The author was a shop owner, still before the war, so there’s a lot of insider information in the book. An interesting read about the shops, owners and life (political and cultural too) tho after reading it I have more questions. On one hand it’s crammed up with lots of information, on the other hand, it lacks some information and topics. Sometimes it’s so one sided you can’t believe it’s (was) the truth.
I’ve started reading in November 2013:
- Historia Polski do 2005 by Marek Borucki is a compendium of Polish history from the ancient times to 2005. It’s mainly used by students, but it’s also a good way to quickly go through the history of Poland if somebody wants to refresh their knowledge. So far nothing too special.
Out of the 8 books I’ve finished reading in November 2013:
- all were written by males. Somehow I end reading mostly books written by males, but all the books in a month? I already have some books written by ladies for December, I’ll try to read more.
- I’ve read 7 (paper) books both paperback and hardcover.
- 6 out of 8 books were in Polish.
- 5 books were about Warsaw, my dearest hometown.
- 3 books were borrowed from the public library. 4, if you count the currently reading.
- 2 of the books I’ve read were about traditional/folk stories, and for children. I love reading folk stories so I’ll read more in the future.
- 1 book was in Japanese.
- 1 book was in English.
How many books did you read in November? What books did you read? Do you make a list of the books you read?