When I tell people that I am reading a book a day for a year, their second reaction , after "is that even possible?", is typically "you won't have time for anything else!" or "you'll have your head in a book the entire year!" and while yes, this is a lot of reading, it's really only 1-3 hours a day. I get frustrated with people who think it isn't possible, because tons of people watch a movie or TV for two hours a day, and no one tells them "wow thats really hard to do" because well, its not hard to do. It's very easy to sit it front of a TV or on Facebook for hours, and then look up later and see how much time has passed.
The hardest part about this challenge was making the initial commitment to read a book a day for a year, and actually starting it. It means I have to be intentional about when I wake up (which I haven't been that great at) and finding books to read (I go to the library once a week and pick up 5-6 books). While I would like to be even more intentional about what I read, like "oh today is International Jazz Day ? I'll read Blue like Jazz!" (which I can't do, because I've already read it. and love it. Donald Miller, you coy, clever man)
But in the mean time, I try to alternate each day between fiction and non-fiction, and can choose whatever genre I want. I don't have all 365 books chosen because new books will be written and friends may recommend books I haven't heard of so I want to leave room for those changes. And yes, its added reading, but I am being intentional about what I read, and making sure that life doesn't pass me by while my head is stuck in a book.
This book was another well chosen birthday present from the hubs. What made it even better was that I read it on the train to and from Chicago to meet up with my friend Andrea from highschool. We had a blast! Saw the bean, went on the Ferris wheel at Navy Pier, walked the Mag Mile, went to the Cheesecake Factory, put our hands inside an imprint of Michael Jordan's, and went to a ridiculous amount of souvenir stores. Our feet were yelling at us by the end of the day, but it was worth it.
Tea Obreht is an amazing author- she should win awards for this book. I am extremely jealous of her-- not only does she have a cute pixie face, but this book was published when she was 25. But I will look past my jealousy and try to give an unbiased opinion (unbiased opinion? that's sort of an oxymoron).
This book was set in a non-descript Balkan country which I enjoyed. Since I've spent some time in Albania, I pictured it in Albania. Rakija was raki, and burek was byrek. The symbolism of the tiger reminded me of The Life of Pi, and the relationship with her grandfather was heartbreakingly beautiful.
She leaves much unsaid, but the silences and pauses tell us more than we need to know.
Shume mire, Tea shpirt, shume mire.