Tabula Rasa turns five today. I would never have imagined the blog would survive so long. It has come dangerously close to stagnancy quite a few times, the most recent panic ensued last month. As a solution, I decided to write a post a month, but have managed more. What can I say, for all the real life getting in the way, I just love the blogging world.
The only thing killing my blogging spirit these past few weeks has been the terrible heat of the summer. The scorch is now dwindling, and I hope to start the new blog-year with a bang. But as a reluctant goodbye to the glorious mango season, I celebrated this fifth blog birthday with yummy mango pastries from a local bakery.
My greatest takeaway from the blogging world, apart from interacting with the friendliest most interesting people, is expanding my reading horizons, geographically. From events such as the German Literature Month and January in Japan to getting books for review from authors living in Africa, Singapore, Pakistan, Australia, book blogging has continually encouraged me to explore English language- and translated literature from around the world. To experience foreign cultures and learn new ways of thought. I haven't read nearly enough, but I am curious to try more, be it books set in different countries to those written by authors of different nationalities. Of these, I love the most what I like to call "place-books." Place-books have stories that are so tightly woven around their setting that the place itself becomes a character in the book. A few examples come to mind,
the rural Afghanistan of And the Mountains Echoed by Khaled Hosseini,
the 18th century Vienna of Mesmerized by Alissa Walser,
the Fascist Italy of The Mysterious Flame of Queen Loana by Umberto Eco,
the post-war Japan of A Pale View of the Hills by Kazuo Ishiguro...
Do you have any favourite place-books? And which are the books that best portray where you come from? Last year in December I won this beautiful place-book called Letters from Thailand in a giveaway from Delia @ Postcards from Asia. Delia, I hope you don't mind, I sort of borrowed your idea for my giveaway.
That's right. After five years planning and failing to host a giveaway, here it is! I have two books to give away. I will pick two winners, one for each book, using random.org. It was difficult to choose novels that didn't fall into specific genres. I have selected place-books that feature India. Both are popular books written by people of Indian origin. And both have hauntingly beautiful prose and memorable stories. Click for my reviews.
The giveaway is closed.
Happy reading and happy blogging!