Since this week is my birthday week, I have decided to add the Birthday Book Tag to my website. This tag is very popular on book blogs; I discovered it by chance on The Bibliophile Girl and have often seen it recurring on other blogs dedicated to the love of reading. According to The Bibliophile Girl, the original creator of this tag is Antonia over at Always Books.
In my free time I am watching a lot of videos from the BookTube community and looking for new reading recommendations (although I still have countless books to read), so reading is always a meaningful part of my life. Before I start the tag I will leave you with a sentence I just found on Goodreads:
“Today a reader, tomorrow a leader.” – Margaret Fuller, American journalist
1 – BIRTHDAY CAKE – a book with a plot that seems cliché but you adore it anyway.
Home Before Dark by Riley Sager: this is the only book by Riley Sager that I have read so far and I loved it. I don’t think the plot is cliché, but the book is considered “a reimagining of the classic haunted house tale” so some elements might seem familiar to the reader, especially if they are fans of horror books and movies.
Nonetheless, I found it very suspenseful and full of thriller overtones and interesting details that make it different from the classic haunted house story. In addition to the plot, I enjoyed both the writing style and the character development so I am looking forward to reading more books by Riley Sager.
2 – PARTY GUESTS – your most anticipated book release this year.
Natural Beauty by Ling Ling Huang: I have some 2023 most anticipated book releases on my radar but the first one that comes to mind is Natural Beauty by Ling Ling Huang, a debut novel that explores many relevant themes such as race, consumerism, and self-appreciation.
3 – BIRTHDAY PRESENTS – a book that surprised you with how much you loved it.
The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt: I remember buying Donna Tartt’s latest book at the time of its release about ten years ago. Reading it was a fantastic experience because the novel was unlike anything I had read before and I found it incredibly compelling. I remember my parents also read it and they both loved it. It moved me in a thousand different ways and I have reread it twice more over the years; it was the first Donna Tartt book I read and I am particularly fond of it. I own it in both the English and Italian editions!
4 – THE HAPPY BIRTHDAY SONG – a book that certainly deserved all the hype it got.
The Neapolitan Novels by Elena Ferrante: I think I should mention a series that I love very much, especially the first book, My Brilliant Friend. The series received much hype when it first came out, both in Italy and abroad (I remember it was read by a lot of American YouTubers I follow). I remember reading the entire series about seven years ago, while I was on holiday on the French Riviera, and couldn’t think of anything else; the writer is Italian and I am grateful to have been able to read these masterpieces of literature in the original language (as I was born and raised in Italy). Also, there is a lot about Italy on a historical level in these books and you really get the feeling of what the nation was like in the postwar years.
5 – HAPPY MUSIC – a book with some very beautiful and truly memorable quotes.
To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee: I read this in high school and jotted down all the sentences that seemed most meaningful to me because the book is full of them. I think it is one of the most beautiful and powerful novels of all time (and I also really enjoyed the sequel, Go Set a Watchman, although I know opinions on that are mixed). My favorite quote is, “You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view … until you climb into his skin and walk around in it.”
6 – GETTING OLDER – a book that you read a long time ago, but you think that you would appreciate it more if you read it as a more mature reader.
Little Women by Louisa May Alcott: I read this wonderful classic when I was in primary school and have reread it several times over the years (most recently four years ago, when the Greta Gerwig movie adaptation was released). Although I loved it very much as a child, I think some of the themes in the book are best appreciated as an adult. In a way, it was like growing up with the March sisters; the novel contains beautiful messages of hope and resilience in keeping with old-school American values, and it is one of my all-time favorite classics to which I also dedicated an article. Plus, I am in love with my Barnes & Noble Leatherbound edition!
7 – SWEET BIRTHDAY MEMORIES – a book that kept you incredibly happy during a sad or demanding period of your life.
The Twilight saga by Stephanie Meyer: My answer is the same as The Bibliophile Girl, probably because we belong to the same generation. Twilight was incredibly popular when I was in high school; I consider that period of my life particularly demanding because I was attending a nearly 40-hour-a-week school that allowed you to major in both science and language subjects. There was a lot to do and study, so reading was a form of escape for me at the end of a stressful and demanding day. The Twilight saga was one of my main reads at that time and I have also talked about it in this article about vampires.
Until next time, happy reading!
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