Rain Reads

Today is a rainy day

(Picture courtesy: schlitzohren)

I remember reading ‘Of Love and other Demons’ on a platform. The Indian monsoon rains were being blown around into the sheltered bits and the edges of most pages of my copy were wet. No wonder I love Marquez!

What books do you remember reading in the rain?

What book do you want to read on a rainy day?

Orkney… a review

To love this book, no, I’ll rephrase that, in order to get beyond the first ten pages of this book, you have to be in love with a place, you have to have talked to the sea at night, and you have to have had an affair with poetry. This is no ordinary book, and if you get through it, you will emerge salty and wet, smelling clammy, and gasping for air; and it will not leave you.

This is the description of the book on the author, Amy Sackville’s website

“On a remote island in Orkney, a curiously-matched couple arrive on their honeymoon. He is an eminent literature professor; she was his pale, enigmatic star pupil. Alone beneath the shifting skies of this untethered landscape, the professor realises how little he knows about his new bride and yet, as the days go by and his mind turns obsessively upon the creature who has so beguiled him, she seems to slip ever further from his yearning grasp. Where does she come from? Why did she ask him to bring her north? What is it that constantly draws her to the sea?”

We never learn of her name, this woman of the sea, but we don’t need to. She is a slippery thing of beauty, one that speaks to the cold sea, the cold sea up at the islands, in the middle of nowhere. They spend ten days in Orkney, their first days together as a couple, in a cottage. As a routine, they eat together, but take turns with the sea alone, mostly. She gazes out into the blue from her perch on the beach, he gazes out at her from the window. And around them, the world melts and disappears, flung at the readers’ face and then gone, like sea spray.

If you know me, you know my love for all things unreal. This is a very unreal book… and unlike Murakami, Marquez, Esquivel; I don’t have to read it in translation, that pleases me. I have just been to the Highlands a couple of weeks ago, and the images of Orkney are raw and sharp-edged, they are too vivid in my head, almost causing pain. The most unusual about the style of writing in the book is the fact that the author’s words (the book is in first person narrative, so in this case, the professor’s words) are never in quotes, but her’s are… only she of the sea can be quoted…

Colours, colours that melt and blend into the sea, that bring me here, that take me away. Cold winds, layers of clothes, the air, heavy brine, salty and wet, like their bodies pressed together. Ten days on a deserted island… 300 odd pages… how much you think, how much could change?

You will know the answer if you have ever loved a poetess, ever felt that she was farthest away when she was closest to you. If you’ve ever played wordgames with the sunset, racing with another to keep at it before the yellow orb dips into the waters, trying to keep up the game, failing… failing and being led, naive, into the sea. Head dips and gasps, sand, water, salt, sting sing sting sing… and up up for air. Poetry in motion…

Quote: Prussian blueInk-washed. Indigo.

Out where the sea meets the sky, a swelling of deep, powdery purple cloud, a band of palest eau-de-nil below, and then the reflection of the cloud again purpling the sea violet. The colour of your birthmark, I say; ‘and my bruises’, she smiles.

The Very Inspiring Blogger Award

The talented Zunaira Afzal who writes some fantastic poetry at Solemn Diaries has nominated me for an award. Thank you, my dear. This was perfectly timed for when I have been having doubts about the existence of this blog 🙂

Here are the rules for this award:

1. Link back to the blogger who nominated you.

2. Post the award image to your page.

3. Share 7 facts about yourself.

Facts About Me:

a. I prefer tea to coffee some times of the day and coffee to tea at some other times.

b. I’m an Electronics engineering student. It would have been easy for me to not be if I wasn’t good at it!

c. I love animals, although I have never had a pet.

d. Reading keeps my world turning. Reading a few pages of a good book, underlining, and making a few notes is singularly the most brilliant pat of my day.

e. I want to write a book someday.

f. And before that, I want to publish my poems 🙂

g. I believe in sun signs.

Now the 4th rule:

4. Nominate 15 other blogs and inform them about it.

I have 8. This is because these are the ones that really inspire me. Here they are:

Dilettante Artiste



The Story People

Alastair’s Blog

The (Mis)Adventures of a New Mom

Ute Smile

Lori Lipsky | Poetry Patio