The Musings of a Boho Girl

bōˈhēmēən (noun) 1. a free spirit ; 2. a writer; 3. an explorer of the Avant-Garde.

Tag: Robert Macfarlane

Fall Reading

Happy fall, lovely readers! This is my first post in awhile. I hope everyone enjoyed the summer and is looking forward to a blissful autumn. Over the last few weeks I’ve been editing my fall reading list, there are so many fantastic books being released that it was difficult to narrow my list down to just six books. I’m including two political books, which is rare for me but these writers produce compelling articles.

 

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We Were Eight Years in Power by Ta-Nehisi Coates releases on 10/03/2017. Coates examines the Obama era and the president’s historic candidacy. He has written insightful essays for The Atlantic and was recently awarded the MacArthur Fellowship. Coates has always written nuanced essays and I’m looking forward to reading this book. You can pre-order We Were Eight Years in Power here at Waterstones  or at Barnes & Noble.

Ali Smith is an international treasure. Usually people are national treasures, but Ali Smith’s star shines brighter than the United Kingdom. She has readers across the pond that adore her. Winter: A Novel releases on November 2, 2017. It is the second novel in her quartet. The synopsis is intriguing, check it out here. The first novel, Autumn, was longlisted for the Man Booker. Do read it if you haven’t already. You can pre-order Winter here or here.

The third book on my list doesn’t have a release date in the US, but it’ll be available in the UK on October 2, 2017. The Lost Words by Robert Macfarlane and Jackie Morris is a beautiful picture book suited for children and adults. Jackie Morris is a talented artist, whose illustrations are the perfect match for Macfarlane’s nature words. If you’ve read Landmarks, then you know how mesmerizing Macfarlane’s books can be. You can find it here at Waterstones.

The Future is History by Masha Gessen. This book is an examination of Russia as a failed democracy and Vladimir Putin’s rise to power created an autocracy. Gessen follows four Russians. The book sounds like a cautionary tale as Gessen offers readers a grim reality of what happens when democracy ends. The Future is History releases on October 3, 2017 and can be ordered here.

David Hallberg is immensely talented and one of the most beautiful dancers I’ve ever seen. I was thrilled to learn he wrote a memoir. Hallberg is known for being the first American dancer to join the Bolshoi Ballet, but a long time ago I went to the ballet one evening and watched him perform. He’s special. This memoir includes how he recovered from a serious injury, one that sidelined his career for more than a year. A Body of Work: Dancing to the Edge and Back releases on November 7, 2017. You can pre-order it here.

I’ve become obsessed with Queen Victoria and her little dog, Dash.  Jenna Coleman is superb in this PBS period drama. So while I wait for the second season, I’m reading Daisy Goodwin’s Victoria: A Novel and forming a strong love for Lord Melbourne. Not sure he was the Byronic hero that Rufus Sewell’s portraying, I saw his portrait in the National Portrait Gallery and was immediately fascinated by his tragic marriage. You can find Goodwin’s novel here.

What’s everyone planning to read this fall?

 

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Favourite Quotes from Robert Macfarlane’s Landmarks

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Language and landscape have been inextricably linked for centuries, can you imagine Wuthering Heights without Bronte describing the Yorkshire moors? The setting captures the emotions of Bronte’s characters. While I was reading Robert Macfarlane’s Landmarks, I took notes and wrote down my favourite quotes. Landmarks is filled with fascinating portraits of authors that influenced Macfarlane’s writing. His high praise for Nan Shepherd led me to The Living Mountain. This book is about language…words lost or words on the brink of extinction. The glossary at the end of each chapter reminds us how important vocabulary is to Macfarlane. So I thought instead of a traditional review, I would share Macfarlane’s most striking quotes.

On Roger Deakin’s relationship with water: ’Water was to him a visionary substance. It was homoeopathic, it was cheering, it was beautiful in its flex and flow – and it was lensatic. Prepositions matter again here: we might say that Roger Deakin thought not just about water, he thought in water or with water.’

On Nan Shepherd: ’Shepherd is fierce see-er, then, and like many fierce see-ers, she is also a part-time mystic, for whom intense empiricism is the first step to immanence.’

On Peter Davidson’s poetry and northern landscape: ‘I think of Davidson’s what-ifs as versions of the duct: strange spaces in which time’s claim are stilled – and through which one might see so far into the future that it becomes the past.’
On reading John Muir: ’Reading Muir, I feel invulnerable. He gives me seven-league boots, lets me climb high mountains in a single paragraph. Rockfall, blizzard and avalanche cannot harm him.’
On Richard Jefferies: ‘Sunlight was the substance Jefferies associated most with life; dust the substance that most often triggered his dismayed materialism and his thoughts of death.’

‘Like the ‘white granular powder’ that gathers lethally upon a thriving landscape in the opening pages of Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring (1962), Jefferies’ dust contaminates both body and soul…’

You can find the book here.

My Five Obsessions

So right now I wanted to share the 5 things that I can’t stop thinking about.

1. Penguin Little Black Classics. The launch of classics celebrates the 80th anniversary of Penguin Books. 80 titles at .80 pence each. There are a range of titles, from The Yellow Wallpaper to Anthem of a Doomed Youth; and those are just two of the eleven that I pre-ordered. The publication date is 26 February 2015 so there’s time to check them out. I want them all, which is completely impractical (my bookcase is crumbling and I’m fairly unsettled).

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