Saturday, May 30, 2015

Reading World Literature + 5th Blogiversary

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 18th century Vienna of Mesmerized by Alissa Walser,

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!

6 comments:

Delia (Postcards from Asia) said...

Happy blog anniversary, Priya, and may you write here for many, many more years to come!
I've never had mango cake but your pic looks so good! I love mango with sticky rice and coconut milk. You probably have tried that.

I think you set yourself a realistic goal - a post once a month is fine (although I always hope you'll write more but I know how that goes in real life), anything more is a bonus. Better that than trying to blog every week and feel frustrated because you don't have time.

Giveaways are always nice. I've read one book by Amitav Ghosh, The Glass Palace, and liked it. I haven't read anything by Salman Rushdie, so please enter my name in the giveaway for this book. Thank you.

I'm reading And the Mountains Echoed at the moment but it's beginning to sound a lot like The Kite Runner and I am a little disappointed.

You know, I'm beginning to feel like a muse. :)

Brian Joseph said...

Happy Blogiversy Priya!

I have recently discovered your site and I am glad that you are blogging.

I definitely can relate to getting into blogging ruts and stagnation but in the end I think that blogging is well worth it.

Those mango pastries look to be very good.

Here is to the next five years!

Shreyasi Joshi said...

Save some of the pastries for me, I'm coming!

It's great that you have kept it alive and it's going strong.

Happy birthday to your blog!

Sanveer Singh said...

Happy blogiversary! Here's to five more years. :)

Viktoria Berg said...

Happy Birthday Tabula Rasa! May you live long and prosper.

My favourite book that opened up a new place and culture for me was the Jason Goodwin series about the eunuch detective Yashim. I never wanted to go to Istanbul before. My favourite about my own neck of the woods is Mikael Niemi´s "Popular music from Vittula" which is both real and funny.

(Oh, and count me out of the lottery - I have sooo many books and need to purge; good idea though.)

Hema said...

Congratulations! What a milestone :)

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