Happy Wednesday everyone! How are you enjoying 2022 so far? I hope that you are all doing well and are all healthy despite the risks that surround us. I hope that the pandemic will end soon. I am also praying that 2022 will be a year of hope, healing, and recovery for everyone. I hope that it will be a great year. I didn’t realize that today is the last Wednesday of February! We are just days away from welcoming a new month. How time flies.

As it is a Wednesday, it is time for another WWW Wednesday update. WWW Wednesday is a bookish meme originally hosted by SAM@TAKING ON A WORLD OF WORDS. The mechanics for WWW Wednesday is quite simple, you just have to answer three questions:

  1. What are you currently reading?
  2. What have you finished reading?
  3. What will you read next?

What are you currently reading?

My current read is Taylor Jenkins Reid’s Malibu Rising. This is my first novel by Reid. I was initially apprehensive about acquiring and reading her books because I thought that they belong to the young adult genre. The book titles, such as The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo, were unimpressionable as well. I learned later on that my first impressions of her work were all wrong. HAHA! Ironically, it was after reading the synopsis of The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo that I learned this error. Since I am on a 2021 reading catch-up, I have chosen Malibu Rising over The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo even though I have acquired a copy of the latter first. One of the things I have noted about Reid’s prose is the exploration of Hollywood. Jackie Collins’ novels immediately came to mind. Reid’s novel, however, was not as irreverent as Collins’ novels although there were hints here and there. Malibu Rising is also a very easy read I just might finish it on or before Friday.

What have you finished reading?

The past week has been busy and as such, I managed to complete just one book. Another factor that contributed to this slowdown, I guess, was the heft of Jonathan Franzen’s Crossroads. It is nearly 600-pages long with a tightly-knit font. This is my second novel by Franzen and honestly, I was a little apprehensive about reading the book considering my not-so-stellar experience with Freedom. But reading positive feedback and reviews about the book, some even calling it one of the best books of 2021, helped overcome my apprehensions. Set in the 1970s in the fictional town of New Prospect, Illinois, the novel follows the story of the Hildebrandt family. The patriarch, Russ, is a pastor at the First Reformed Church while the matriarch, Marion, is a housewife. Between them, they have four children – Clem, Becky, Perry, and Judson. The titular Crossroads was a youth group at Russ’ church from which he was kicked off in favor of Rick Ambrose. However, under Franzen’s vivid storytelling, crossroads took different forms. Despite its heft, I appreciated Crossroads more than Freedom.

Despite the month coming to a close, my goal hasn’t changed as I will try to complete all 2021 books I have on my bookshelf. This time around, my focus will be on translated works. One of my priorities is Nobel Laureate in Literature Olga Tokarczuk’s latest translated work, The Books of Jacob. Despite it being my third book by the esteemed Polish writer, I am daunted not only because of the book’s heft – it is almost a thousand pages – but also because of the fact that the book is often considered the best of her oeuvre.

It was in 2021 that I have first came across Danish writer Tove Ditlevson. Three of her memoirs were collectively published as a single volume for the first time. By reading some materials on her, I have learned about some details of her life. This makes me look forward to reading her memoir. Honestly, I am reminded of Paul Auster’s The New York Trilogy and Pedro Juan Gutiérrez’s Dirty Havana Trilogy although I am cognizant that neither book is a memoir. Another translated work I have lined up is Mieko Kawakami’s Heaven. The Japanese novelist’s fan base saw incredible growth after the publication of an English translation of her novel, Breasts and Eggs. In 2021, the translated version of her award-winning work, Hevun, was published as Heaven.

That’s it for this week’s WWW Wednesday. I hope you are all doing great. Happy reading and always stay safe! Happy Wednesday again!