Tag Archives: Reading

#NonFictionNovember: My TBR.

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Salam dear friends,

I hope you’re doing great.

Today, I want to share with you my #NonFictionNovember tbr. #NonFictionNovember is a challenge/readathon created by 2 amazing youtubers to encourage people to read more of the nonfiction genre.

They also help the participants by creating 4 -optional- challenges. They encourage readers to pick their books based on these:

New: this means to read a new release, or new author.. Whatever ’new’ means to you.

Contervertial: this is for books with contervertial topics and themes. This aspect may be universally contervertial or just personal.

Important: here you can read about any topic that you are interested in. For me, that would be anything: Translation, Science, Religion,  Feminism,  Literature, Human Rights, Self help, Cinema, Environment … ANYTHING.

Fascinating: this can mean anything that you find amazingabout the book. It can be the style,  the topic, a person,  a place. Again,  it’s a broad area to choose from.

Remember,  the main goal is to read more nonfiction books,  so if you hate that genre, give it a try and pick one book this month. If you normally read 1 or 2 try 3 or more, and so on and so forth.

So here is my TBR (and yeah, I know I’m late):

New: Pancakes in Paris

This a 2016 release. It is a book written by an American man who decides to open a restaurant in France. This is more than him telling us about his journey.  This is a book about his life, his dreams,  himself.

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Contervertial: Le Journal d’Anne Frank

I wanted to read this book for a very long time. Actually,  I’ve started reading it in French 4 or 5 years ago, then one of my friends had a copy in English, so I picked it up and read it. The problem was that that version was not complete qnd she didn’t have the second part. So here I am, determined to read it in French this time.

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This is count for contervertial for many reasons. First it was banned several times. Also, it deals with some contervertial topics and it’s written in a very contervertial period. And finally, it is contervertial because there is still a debate,  still some people think that it was not written by Anne Frank herself.

Important: How to Stop Worrying and Start Living

This is a book about living in a better way, living a better life. I started reading it months ago, I enjoyed it, but didn’t finish it. It is beautifully written and I’m planing to start it from the beginning insha’ALLAH.

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Fascinating: When Breath becomes Air

This a beautiful book about a beautiful human being. A book that is beautifully written, and that I really can’t wait to read it. I can’t say more, for now.

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Honorable ambitious TBR mentions (I may or may not read):

في الترجمة: A book about translation and its relationship with philosophy.

A Life in Parts: An ARC I received that is written by Bryan Cranston. It’s his biography from his childhood to now.

Guns: A reread. This is about the contervertial topic of violence,  crimes, and guns in the US. I loved the first time,  and I recommend it for sure.

That is all for today dear all. Talk to you soon insha’ALLAH.

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My Top 5 Summer Books

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Salam dear readers,

Since it’s finally fall, I wanted to give you a wrap up of my summer.

Summer is over alhamduli’ALLAH.. YAAAAY!!! I have mixed feelings about this. Summer in Marrakesh is somehow unbearable, but it’s one of the characteristics that makes Marrakesh what it is; and alhamduli’ALLAH we got through it. Yes, I will miss the free time, the travelling, the beach, and all the reading that I could do. But still I’m a “pro-Rain/Cold” person.

Today I want to share with you my  top 5 books that I’ve read this summer.

This summer, I read some very good books, some bad ones and some average. I also reread 2 of my favorite books and I really enjoyed rereading them. I won’t talk much about these books but I will try to give reviews of them very soon insha’ALLAH.

You can see more about the books that I’m reading on my Goodreads profile.

Let’s start:

Living Dead Girl:

This book (sigh) … This book can’t be easily described or talked about. It’s a young adult/contemporary novel written by Elizabeth Scott. Let me just say that it’s the most disturbing book I’ve read in awhile (if not ever). It deals with kidnapping, rape, pedophilia, family, identity… I couldn’t put it down and I got really scared while reading it. I couldn’t/didn’t want to imagine what was happening. I didn’t like reading some/most of the content and I was reading it really quickly trying not to pay attention to what’s been described. I don’t want to spoil the book, but I will try to give a review of it very soon. I gave this book 4 stars on Goodreads.

The Great Gatsby:

I can’t give this less than 5 stars. This was my third time reading this, and it was even better.  I love reading it and rereading it and talking about it over and over again. every time I read it, I discover new things about it that I didn’t notice before. This book is about dreams, lost love, wealth,  and society. I can’t express why I love this books clearly, but it’s just one of my favorite books of all time. I gave a book review a very long time, but I think I will write another well developed review very soon insha’ALLAH.

The Trouble with Women:

 

Have you ever noticed that women are rarely mentioned in our history books and courses?? I did for sure. This book deals with that in a very simple funny way. It’s a nonfiction feminist interpretation of this whole subject written by Jacky Fleming. I read this in one sitting, and I really really enjoyed it. You can read it in an hour or so. It contains sequential art and that helps in the structure and the goal of the book as a whole. Again I will go in depth in a review of this book in a day or so insha’ALLAH. I gave it 4 stars.

Steal Like an Artist:

This is a very interesting read. It’s written by Austin Kleon,a young writer and artist who create wonderful things in what he writes and speak about.  This should be read by every student, every blogger, writer, teacher… Basically EVERYONE. The message is really powerful. It just tells humans everywhere that they don’t need to be genius, they just need to be themselves, and to know what they want. It has great tips that I tried to put into practice immediately. “Creativity is everywhere. It is for everyone” and that’s in itself is a life/mind changing

ساق البامبو

This is an Arabic book entitled “The Bamboo Stalk” written by Saud Alsanousi. This was probably one of the best books that I’ve read in my entire life. The language use is so beautiful. It shows how much love the writer has for the Arabic language; this love reaches the reader, and make him appreciate the language even better. It has an amazing story with very unique characters. Th events take place between Kuwait and the Philippines.  It tackles different subjects like:  race, identity, family, sense of belonging, social classes, and other universal struggles. I will definitely recommend this book. Go and read it.

That’s it for today. Let me know in the comments of your favorite books of this summer and what do you think  of mine.

Talk to you soon insha’ALLAH.

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Kaoutar’s Book Thoughts: Three Men in a Boat

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Salam dear readers,

These are my thoughts on Three Men in Boat by Jerome K. Jerome.

I’ve just finished reading this book. It took me awhile to read it, but I read most of it in the past 3 days, so I think that is a good thing 📚📚📚📚📚 “Let your boat of life be light, packed with only what you need – a homely home and simple pleasures, one or two friends, worth the name, someone to love and someone to love you, a cat, a dog, and a pipe or two, enough to eat and enough to wear, and a little more than enough to drink; for thirst is a dangerous thing. ” ☺📚☺📚☺📚☺ I give it a 4 ☆ out of 5. At first, I thought of giving it 3,5 but it’s worth more. It made me smile, laugh, and think. It is full of knowledge, and it just brushes up my British history knowledge. At some point, it can seem hard to follow, specially with the heavy description of London streets, rivers, and monuments. But it’s just a unique book. I don’t know why, but while reading it, it keeps reminding me of Charlie Chaplin and all those silent funny movies. I imagined the characters as those actors with their outfit, hats, and all those beautiful characteristics. It is also based on real events that the author and his friends experienced, so that’s definitely a plus. The book shows that the author is a man of experience, that he knows what he’s talking about, that he has a very smart sense of humor, and that he’s wise. I really recommend this to all of you dear readers, especially to the ones who like a good funny British classic. 🔭📚🔭📚📚🔭📚🔭 That's it… I’m going to go back now to reading my other Arabic book 😊☺😊 #me #reading #books #bookstagram #bookphotography #bookworm #morocco #marrakech #instalike #instagood #beauty #nature #igreads #currentread #whatareyoureading #boat #classic #كتب #اقرأ #كتبي ر

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I read this book last month, and I already expressed how much I liked it. Who says that British classic humor can be hard to grasp? This book shows absolutely the opposite.This meant to be a travelogue, but ended up as a very funny book.

This is the story of three men – Jerome and his two friends, Harris and George and their dog. They decide to take a trip in a boat (something that was common in those days) in the River Thames in Oxford, England to cure themselves after they suffered from some weird ailment.  While narrating, he mentions all the villages and landmarks he and his friends pass, such as Marlow, Hampton Church, Magna Carta Island, … The books is also full of funny stories that happened to the characters or people they know. These stories will make you laugh out loud. There are stories of friends, historical figures, and even stories that happened to Montmorency, the dog.

The book also describes the common events  and situations that can happen in our everyday life. Even for today’s modern life, these situations are still relevant. You can still relate to the characters/ real people.  It has a beautiful sense of wisdom combined with a brilliant wit, which you can just love 😀

It refreshes your knowledge of many things. 3 years ago, I took a “British Culture”class, so this reminds me of what I like about that subject. I like studying and knowing more about the British history, so I really liked it when he was talking about the Magna Carta, the history behind certain streets and homes, and the earliest kings and queens of the UK,

Things I did not like: The ending was a bit quick, since their return journey was not described in full detailed, and it was just in one chapter. Also, sometimes you will find it hard to keep with some of the description, but you can’t help but love it.

I recommend this for the following reasons:

  1. It’s a classic. No need to explain more
  2. It’s funny in a smart way. For example, there is this “German language” story that made me giggle, and I’m sure it will give you the same feel.
  3. It’s full of knowledge. I’m sure you like books that make you know more, so go and try this 😉

Rate: 4/5

I have chosen to change this section from “book reviews” to “Kaoutar’s Book Thoughts”, they are my own spontaneous first thoughts; because I don’t want to give a full detailed review. These are just my thoughts on a certain book: why I loved it/ hated it. I love talking about books, but I don’t like to spoil them 😉

This is my favorite quote in the book. I actually highlighted it in my copy, which I rarely do (try not to do/ hate to do) in books.

“Let your boat of life be light, packed with only what you need – a homely home and simple pleasures, one or two friends, worth the name, someone to love and someone to love you, a cat, a dog, and a pipe or two, enough to eat and enough to wear, and a little more than enough to drink; for thirst is a dangerous thing. ”

 

That is for today. Keep reading books, and checking my blog 😉 Talk to you soon insha’ALLAH.

#boutofbooks: My TBR

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Salam dear friends,

It’s a little bit late, but here is my TBR for this week Read-A-Thon.. Enjoy 🙂

PS: I’ve already started reading all these books 🙂

The Reluctant Fundamentalist

I wanted to read this for a long time now, and today, I read 20 pages of it.. I love it 🙂

hamid

Crazy Love

I read most of this in the past two days.. I think I’m going to finish it tonight 🙂

L’homme Sans Passé and مادة التعبير الفيلمي

I only read 20 pages in each.. The first one in French, and it talks about a man who loses his memory in the day of his wedding.. interesting 🙂

The second one is an Arabic non fiction book, and it’s about the techniques and the processes of making movies… Well written 🙂

I also have many other books and materials (concerning university mainly) that I want to read this week.. Who knows?? Maybe, I will.

I have 4 days to go, and I hope that I can make it 🙂

I’ll share with you my progress soon Insha’ALLAH 🙂

One more thing: What do you think of my TBR ??

Female Authors You Should Be Reading…

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Salam dear friends,

Today is the international women’s day.. I decided to share with you some of the female authors that you should know, and read their works. The authors are from different periods, and they are clever, creative, and talented 😉

Louisa May Alcott

I think we’re all familiar with this name. I love her way of writing: simple and thoughtful.

Maya Angelou

I love this woman. I have read almost all her poems, and parts of her other works.. I first knew her in the Oprah’s show. I was very young and I loved her words, and I found that she’s very wise. Her quotes are mind changing.

Danielle Steel

A woman who needs no introduction…This author knows what she’s doing. So far, I’ve read two of her novels, and I loved them. She is currently the best selling author alive and the fourth bestselling author of all time.

Debbie Macomber

I really enjoyed reading the works of this author. She knows how to choose her characters, and I feel that women will identify with them.

Zadie Smith

She is compared to Charles Dickens, and other brilliant authors. This young female author should be known and read 🙂

Alice Munro

This Nobel Prize winner deserves to be on the top of the list.. She is the queen of short stories… You should read one of hers at least 🙂

There is more, of course.. J. K. Rowling, Anne Rice, Gillian Flynn, Alice Walker…………….

I know I did not mention them all.. The list is long, but I choose these women just to show how great they were and are. I love their works. I thank them  for what they’ve done, and I am sure I’m not the only one who enjoyed reading what they’ve written 🙂

Happy International Women’s Day to all the books lovers, authors, women, and human beings.

She’s back…

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Salam dear friends,

Great news for Harper Lee readers 🙂

harper lee

After publishing her beautiful novel more than 50 years now, she’s back with another book 😉

It was announced that Lee would be publishing another novel, called Go Set a Watchman, which she had written in the mid-1950s, before To Kill a Mockingbird 🙂

Go Set a Watchman is to be published on July 14, 2015.

After all, “To Kill a Mockingbird” will not be Harper Lee’s only published book.

to kill a

The novel is 304 pages, and will be published by Harper, an imprint of HarperCollins , in the United States and by Heinemann, an imprint of Penguin Random House, in the United Kingdom. The first printing will be two million copies.

Happy reading 🙂 🙂

Book Review: The Stranger.

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Salam dear friends,

Hope you’re doing great 🙂

My today’s book is The Strange, by Albert Camus… I finished it 2 days ago, and I can’t stop rereading it. It is a book about us, humans. It was written in 1942, during World War II. The book is very interesting: once you hold it in your hand, you can’t just put it away. The story is written in a brilliant way, that it makes the reader thinks that he’s a part of it.

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“Maman died today. Or maybe yesterday; I can’t be sure.” This is how the novel begins, and from this first sentence, I can feel that I’m going to read something good… That’s how I thought 🙂

When reading the story, I felt like I’m reading a personal diary of Mersault, the main character of this novel. Mersault is more or less a careless person, who lives his life the way he wants to, without any significant passion (or emotion) . He doesn’t think much about what people say or think about him. He says what he thinks of, and doesn’t speak unless he has something very important to say. What I liked most about him is his honesty.

I felt bad for him, but in the same time I liked the whole character. When his mother dies, he doesn’t cry, or feel any change, he doesn’t even want to see her for the last time, and it’s sad. We may think that he doesn’t like his mother, but it’s not true, he’s used of being that way. He sees death as a fact of life. Reading this book, you may feel that Mersault is a stranger, But I think we all are strangers in one way or another.

The life of Mersault changes at the end of the first part. He is forced to face a meaningless universe. He is out in the beach, when his friend is followed by a group of Arabs, and Mersault shoots one of the Arabs. Here the story begin to change in a strange way. The simple details begin to control the life of a man, an ordinary man who is described as being a monster. We can call it bad luck or destiny, or we can just call it life.

There is more to say about the novel and about Mersault, but I’ll stop here.  I won’t talk about the end, because I think you should read the book to know it. I would only say that this book is amazing. It is a timeless classic that speaks to your soul, not your mind.

stranger

Quotes to share from the book:

“If something is going to happen to me, I want to be there.”

“Since we’re all going to die, it’s obvious that when and how don’t matter.”

“I realized then that a man who had lived only one day could easily live for a hundred years in prison. He would have enough memories to keep him from being bored”

“I felt the urge to reassure him that I was like everybody else, just like everybody else.”

That’s it… Talk to you soon Insha’ALLAH

These Books Were Banned… ??

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Salam dear friends,

Since it is Banned Books Week, I’ll continue talking about banned books,

You can find the other post here.. 🙂

Today, I’m going to share with you some of your favorite books that were surprisingly banned or challenged by some governments, schools, or parents…

The Wonderful Wizard of Oz

This beautiful book was challenged for different weird reasons, Some said that it’s about women in strong leadership roles ( and that’s absolutely bad and unacceptable, right ?? :/ ); others claims that it promotes socialist and Marxist values…

To Kill a Mockingbird

This book was banned because – and I quote – it “conflicted with the values of the community.”

 Animal Farm

The book was banned by different countries for different reasons, mostly because it criticizes corrupt leaders. It is still banned in countries like Cuba, and North Korea.

The Diary of Anne Frank

Lebanon banned the book for portraying favorably Jews, Israel or Zionism…. In some schools, the book was/is considered to be inappropriate to kids..

Charlotte’s Web

It was banned for the same reason why China banned Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland ( again, you can find the post here)… In 2006, some parents saw that their children should not read books where animals talk…

Nineteen Eighty-Four

Another George Orwell’s book that was banned in different countries ( US, UK, the Soviet Union…)  for political reasons.

So, what do you think ??

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Talk to you soon Insha’ALLAH 🙂 🙂 🙂

Books, Freedom, and You…

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Salam dear friends,

This week is the the Banned Books Week…The event was founded in 1982… It’s an annual campaign to make people aware of these kind of books, and to celebrate the freedom to read. It’s all about giving the person the right to read whatever he/she wants to read without limits…

I’m with that; because people need to know more about different topics, and they need to decide which book to read, and if they like it or not… They need to be open minded. The role of books is to make individuals accept each other, know more about “the other”, and read more about one other.

But, I’m against the people who write just for money, fame, and money. That makes them write about things that will not benefit the reader, the community, or the writer himself. There are some books that shouldn’t be written in the first place, books that encourage people to do things that are unacceptable, dangerous, and disturbing…. In my opinion, those books should be banned 😀

In the other side, we find that through history of literature, some governments banned the wrong kind of books for the wrong reason…  Why?? Because they don’t agree with the ideas that the book tries to promote,or the language used, and most of the time, they’re afraid, afraid that the people will wake up.

One of the silliest reason why they banned one of our favorite book, and to be more specific: Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland written in 1865 was banned in one of the provinces in China, because…. Wait for it…Becauseit portrays animals in a way that is close to humans. In an other word, they banned it, and considered it “dangerous”, because animals talk in the story, and that will make children see animals and Man as “equal”…. Really ??? :/

The thing is that we love what is banned, we as humans want to know the things others don’t like to show us… Sometimes it’s good, sometimes it’s not… We have to make the choice… So, make a wise one 😉

I’m with the freedom to do what you want to do, to live the way you want to live, and to read the things you like to read… But when doing, reading, and living the way you want to to; take a moment and think:

Is it right??

Is it good ??

Does it work ??

ggggkkk^p

That’s it for now… Talk to you soon Insha’ALLAH 🙂

You need to know: Victor Hugo.

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Salam dear friends,

Today, I’m sharing with you things you need to know about one of the greatest and best known French writers. He’s a man of many talents….  Victor Hugo is one of my favorite novelists, poets, and the list goes on 😉

victor Hugo

Here are the 5 things I think you should know about Victor Hugo… Enjoy 🙂

1)_ When Les Miserables was first published in Paris, it sold out in just a few hours.

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2)_ Hugo produced more than 4000 drawings.

 kaoutar

3)_ Hugo married his childhood sweetheart, Adele Foucher.

4)_ In 1851, Hugo chose to live in exile in Brussels and then in Britain; where he wrote La Legende des Siècles… Hugo did not return to France until 1870.

5)_ The Nation Mourned his Death… When he died, two million people joined his funeral march…

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Hope you’ll read more about this great man, and try to read his novels, poems, and assays… 😀

That’s it… Talk to you soon Insha’ALLAH 🙂 🙂 🙂