I Finally Read Another Murakami Book And It Inspired Me


Title: What I Talk About When I Talk About Running
Author: Haruki Murakami
Release: 2007
Genre: Non Fiction, Memoir
My rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

This book was recommended to me by a customer at the bookshop where I work. As soon as she told me what it was about, I knew that I had to read this book, and I decided to give Murakami a second chance after my rather underwhelming experience with Norwegian Wood last summer (see my review). And she was right. I had the BEST time reading What I Talk About When I Talk About Running even though I am not a runner myself. It actually made me want to give it a try once again. I also want to check out more of Murakami’s work now, probably Kafka on the Shore since I heard many great things about it (and also, I’ve already acquired it on my kindle because I felt like I was on a roll).

Basically, What I Talk About When I Talk About Running is a book about the author’s love for running. In several essay-like chapters, he talks about how he practices in order to run marathons and participate in triathlons. He also compares running and writing, his two passions, in terms of how both are a long term practice. And this really spoke to me on so many levels for some reason. Reading this book was a truly inspiring experience.

IT ALSO MADE ME FEEL SO MANY THINGS! Reading Murakami’s book What I Talk About When I Talk About Running made me want to reread some classics such as The Great Gatsby or Great Expectations, or even Tess of the d’Ubervilles, and fully appreciate them because they are very clever observations of our society. I fell now that I wasn’t ready to really enjoy them when I first read them. And even though I probably won’t ever get the chance to reread them (at least not any time soon, as I mostly try to read new releases for work), it feels like a few words from Murakami about The Great Gatsby gave me a better understanding of classics in general.

So yes, What I Talk About When I Talk About Running is a really good book, and I devoured it. I have also now decided that I too, should dedicate my life to running and writing. And to overall becoming a better person. Of course it happens every so often that books make me want to do things with my life like trying out archery or some other random thing. Mostly, it’s also traveling, which I love doing. Sometimes, it’s something that has nothing to do with anything I have ever done or aspired to be. But this time, it’s something that is truly, absolutely in phase with who I am. It speaks to me. I do love writing, and have loved it since I learnt how to read. And I do want to leave a healthy life. So it just makes sense. And this is probably why this book left such a deep impact on me.

But that’s not all. Murakami’s style is excellent, and he is also a very humble narrator, which made for an even better reading experience. So yes, you should read this book. Read it right now, it might change your life.

Thoughts on Michelle Obama’s Book BECOMING


Title: Becoming
Author: Michelle Obama
Genre: Non Fiction, Memoir
Release: 2018
My rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

What this book is about:

From her early childhood in South Side Chicago, to her life after leaving the White House, Michelle Obama retraces her journey, and explains how she became who she is today. She gets through all the steps, from kindergarten to law school to her first job to meeting Barrack, all the election days, the campaigns, the life in the White House, to the woman she is now today. I personally listened to the audiobook narrated by Michelle Obama herself and I really loved it.

[Something I would occasionally think about while reading this book. Source: New Girl season 6 episode 11.]


I’d been meaning to pick up this book ever since I learnt that it was a thing, and I’m so glad I just did. The narration by the author — and ex first lady — herself was definitely a bonus. Overall, it was clever and enjoyable. It’s so easy to really get into the story and the narration, and that definitely made it an interesting read. This book was both moving and inspiring, and I would recommend it one hundred percent.

Even if I pretty much knew what was going to happen next, every time Michelle Obama recalled holding her breath before an election result I couldn’t help but feel the suspense with her, which made me enjoy the book so much more!

Overall, Becoming was a truly inspiring book. I couldn’t help but admire Michelle Obama — even more than I did before — because of the amazing journey she went through. She switched careers three times before becoming the first lady, and that is so reassuring as a 23 years old. She truly gave me hope for my life, and made me want to be a better person. It was also interesting to get an insight into the life at the White House. This book made me want to pick up more of what she’d written! It’s impossible to even fathom what her life is right now / has been like as a first lady, but it was definitely nice to get a glimpse of it through Becoming.

I am a huge fan of memoirs and autobiographies in general, and this has become an instant favourite — possibly even more so than I would have imagined. Quite a few times, when people would ask me what I was reading in January, I would get really excited and start talking about Becoming and how great it is. Anyway, I guess my point is that this book is brilliant, and I loved it. If you still need me to write it down for you: go pick up Becoming 👏

After reading Can We All Be Feminists? it made so much sense to read something by an influential woman such as Michelle Obama, who had to fight her way through everything, and especially prejudice, day after day. Yet again, this is something that I can hardly fathom, but I’m trying my best to educate myself, and open my eyes in a better way. Reading this book was just one of the many things that contributed!

Thanks for reading up until now, and I hope you will pick up Becoming!

Meeting With Reni Eddo-Lodge!!!

I read Why I’m No Longer Talking To White People About Race a little while ago and I absolutely wanted to talk about it on here, so this is the perfect opportunity. Last week, Reni Eddo-Lodge was in Paris for a talk at my favourite library Shakespeare & Company, so of course I had to go. And trust me, it was worth it. First of all, there was A LOT of people, but luckily I got there super early, so I got to sit on the third row. If you have ever been to Shakespeare and Co, you’ll know that’s there’s not a lot of room inside, but it was completely packed with people everywhere, sitting, standing, and seeing the talk from different screens in the shop.

For an hour, she answered questions about her book and her activism. She even read her original blog post, which inspired the book (and she has a gorgeous British accent, sorry not sorry I had to say it). She talked of course about the questions addressed in the books, the history of Black people in the UK, white priviledge, feminism, and more. I could have stayed listening to her forever, honestly she is such an interesting and inspiring person. If you haven’t read her book yet, I highly recommend it. I just want to reread it now honestly, because though I have spent my time tabbing it, I still feel like I have missed so much… This book is so important. If you’re going to read only one book this year, it should be this one. It’s really well made, and clear, and I just, I don’t have the words, but go read this book.

In the meantime, I also found out that she made a podcast called About Race, which I am definitely going to check out.

After the talk, the bookshop offered us wine, and Reni Eddo-Lodge signed her book! It was so surreal to meet her (and of course I made a complete fool of myself). But I can’t wait to hear more and read more of her!

Wishful Drinking: My Review


As you may or may not know, I am studying Carrie Fisher’s book The Princess Diarist for my thesis this year, and of course I am getting into reading as much as her other books as possible. I am working on questions of autobiography and memoirs, taboo and coming of age. So The Princess Diarist was a perfect choice for that. However, there is another subject that is very dear to me, and that is mental illness. This is why I was so eager to read Wishful Drinking. And this is why I absolutely wanted to talk about it on here.

Genre: Non Fiction
Publication: 2008
My rating: ★★★★★

What this book is about:

In Wishful Drinking, Carrie Fisher talks about different aspects of her life, growing up, the impact her parents had on her life, and of course the impact Star Wars had on her life, her mental health and addiction problems, the fact that one of her best friends died in her bed, different relationships she had, manic depression and shock therapy, how her daughter changed her life, and loads of other sensible and important matters. The books is actually (for the most part I believe) the transcription of a show with the same name, if I am correct.

“By the end of this book, you could be gay and insane! Unless you began that way.”

(Spoilers: I did begin that way.)


Wishful Drinking is very moving, and cleverly written. Needless to say, I absolutely loved it. It’s a quick read and I devoured it almost in one sitting. I love how Carrie Fisher writes, it’s so easy to read, and yet she talks about incredibly important matters. This book is light in times, and grave when it needs to be. I seem to have learnt a lot, both about her, and about what it’s like growing up the child of worlwide famous parents such as Debbie Reynolds and Eddie Fisher. She shares anecdotes of her childhood and hadulthood, relationships and friendships, but more importantly, she breaks the taboo surrounding mental illness. Carrie Fisher sufferred from manic depression, which means she could go through phases of intense despair, and phases of mania, which are quite the opposite and something I cannot begin to describe. And yet she talks about it as something that was just part of her life, just another element that made her who she was, without dramatizing it. And that’s what I really admire about her. She manages to present alcoholism, depression and electroshop therapy as just another eccentricity of her life, when it was also a constant burden, in the life of an amazing person.

“But imagine this though. Imagine having a mood system that functions essentially like weather “- independantly of whatever’s going on in your life. So the facts of your life remain the same, just the emotional fiction that you’re responding to differs.”

That, ladies and gentlemen, is Carrie Fisher talking about bipolar disorder, also known as manic depression. And it’s absolutely beautiful.

Before I end this blog post, I wanted to share two additional quotes which I find for the first one, incredible relatable, and for the second one, incredible inspiring:

“I didn’t necessarily feel like dying — but I’d been feeling a lot like not being alive.”

“Resentment is like drinking a poison and waiting for the other person to die.”

That it’s bookworms, I hope you enjoyed, and I most certainly hope you will check out this book if you haven’t read it yet!

Unfiltered: I Talk About Lily Collins’ Autobiography


As some of you may or may not know, I am studying autobiographies and memoirs for my master thesis this year (more precisely, I am working on The Princess Diarist by Carrie Fisher, and Mémoire de Fille by Annie Ernaux). So of course, I have to read more memoirs, more or less similar to those I am studying and one of my latest picks was Unfiltered: No Shame, No Regrets, Just Me by Lily Collins, which was published in 2017. One of my friends was surprised to hear that Lily Collins had already written a (sort of) autobiography, since she is still in her twenties. However, I do believe books like this one are important, because people in their twenties can relate to them and their authors more than to autobiographies written later in one’s life. Of course, people in their sixties, for example, would have more to say in such a book, but this is not necessarily what everyone needs to read, or what everyone can relate to, which is exactly why I enjoyed this book.

I really like Lily Collins as an actress, but I have to admit I didn’t know much about her. Through this book, she opens her heart to the reader. She talks not only about her insecurities, which is something we all have, but also about her mental disorders, which is something that not only speaks to me on many levels, but also should be discussed more because it is often disregarded and misunderstood. Lily Collins went through anorexia and bulimia as well as anxiety, and she depicts it in a very moving, heartwarming way. To be honest, at the end of the book, I felt really hopeful about my future, which is something that doesn’t happen really often these days, and the very reason why I would definitely recommend this book.

Unfiltered is full of anecdotes, wise words and stories about Collins’ life and her family. It is divided in chapters focusing on different aspects of her life and struggles, from when she grew up, til the time she was filming Okja in Korea, which is around the time she finished writing her memoir. It is full of pictures and inspiring words.

Overall, I gave it 4 out of 5 stars, and I definitely think I should reread this one. It’s such a feel-good book, and there are too little of those ♥

Thoughts on The Sun and her Flowers

sun and flowers

I read milk and honey by Rupi Kaur earlier this year, after hearing so many great things about it, and I absolutely loved it. It’s actually a book that convinced me that I should read more poetry. So of course, when I saw that Rupi Kaur was releasing another collection, I knew I had to pick it up. Even the cover is gorgeous, and I think that I may have liked it even more than the previous one. But let me get a little deeper, because this book deserves all the praise in the world.

If you want to hear my thoughts on milk and honey, I made a video about it back in January!

Title: the sun and her flowers
Author: Rupi Kaur
Genre: Poetry
Release: October 2017
My rating: ★★★★★


Rupi Kaur’s poetry deals with the contemporary issues of our society such as abuse, feminism and what it’s like to be a Brown Woman today. It talks about one’s roots, about immigration, about being hurt and healing. The sun and her flowers is divided between several evolving chapters, one of them talking about rape, something that moved me a lot. But don’t worry, it also includes some topics that are much more bright and positive! It talks about accepting and loving yourself for who you really are. It is also an ode for Kaur’s mother, whom she admires a lot. I just want to give this book a giant hug. For some reason, it speaks to me on a very deep level. I just want more and I can’t get enough.

Most poems are short. Some are long. It doesn’t matter. I could just read them over and over again. And it’s exactly the kind of book that makes me want to read poetry as well.

This was a short post, but I truly adored this book. If you have read it as well, I would love to talk about it with you in the comments!

The Lonely City: My Review


I hadn’t done a book review – or a post here actually – in quite some time, so I thought it was time to say hey, I’m still there. This book was lent to me by a friend because she thought I would like it, and let me tell you she was absolutely right: I loved it.

Full title: The Lonely City: Adventures in the Art of being Alone
Author: Olivia Laing
Publication: March 2016
Genre: Non Fiction, Art, Memoir
My rating: ★★★★★

What this book is about:

In The Lonely City, Olivia Laing talks about her experience living in New York, about being alone and feeling lonely, about how social media can make you feel alive, and even more imortantly, about the lives of many artists – including Andy Warhol – who lived and struggled in New York.

Why I loved it so much:

What I really love about big cities (I’m thinking about Paris and Berlin, because I have lived there, and the situation can compare to New York in many aspects), is how you can be anonymous when you move there. I don’t mind being alone, I sometimes love it, and I love feeling that the city belongs to me in many aspects. And this is something I found in this book and could relate to. A city like New York is full of opportunities, but also full of loneliness and lonely people, and I believe Olivia Laing perfectly caputured this in her book.

Another reason I really loved this book is that I learnt a lot about various artists, including Warhol, Solanas and Wojnarowicz. Some artists I had never heard of, some I had, and all had something fascinating to tell through this book. Laing chose to talk about artists who suffered of social exclusion because of various affects of their lives (poverty, AIDS, mental illness among those reasons) and she does it in a very fascinating and beautiful way. Every chapter deals with differents artists and different aspects of loneliness, and reasing this book is a wonderful journey.

And finally, something else I can’t not mention when talking about this book, because it was probably the most relatable aspect of it: Laing’s relationship to social media. In several occurences, she mentioned how important it is in her life, and how she could spend days only talking to people online. She makes the internet feel like home, and she shows how social media can help in situations of loneliness, and this is honestly the kind of talk I live for. I grew up with parents and professors telling me how bad and dangerous the Internet was, and how social media should be avoided. But I have met many amazing people online, I have found a platform to express myself, and just like Laing, I could spend days not going out and only talking to people online. Social media can have a very big impact in the lives of introverts (and other people) and I believe this is something we could talk about more, so thank you Olivia Laing for that aspect and every other aspect of The Lonely City.


This review grew a lot more personal than I thought it would be, but thank you for reading if you came this far! I can only recommend this book, it was absolutely fantastic, and definitely one of my favourite reads this year.

IMG_20170916_143159_647   IMG_20170923_130114_102

The Princess Diarist: My Review


Today I’m going to review something a little bit different from what I usually do, since it is a non fiction book, and I haven’t reviewed one of those in a very long while. The Princess Diarist was written by Carrie Fisher, who is mostly famous from playing Princess Leia in the first Star Wars trilogy (Episode 4, 5 and 6). This book is a mix of memoir, diary and poetry, which deals with her life while filming Star Wars, and how it changed everything for her. She explains how much this role has influenced her life in many good and bad ways. She also discusses her short affair with Harrison Ford (who plays Han Solo). She talks about the way socitety sees her, and discusses her image, and so much more.

Release: October 2016
Genre: Non Fiction, Memoir
My rating: ★★★★☆

My opinion:

This book was beautiful and unexpected. It is hard to describe everything that I felt while reading it. It was moving and wonderful.

I have to say, six months ago, I had never seen any of the Star Wars movies. My Erasmus friends made me watch them all recently, and I absolutely loved them. Though I had never seen any of the Star Wars movies – or any movie with Carrie Fisher – I had always admired Carrie Fisher. And when I heard about this book, I knew that I had to read it. It is always interesting in my opinion to delve into the lives of famous people, because they are so much more than they appear, so much more than their image. Our society is a mess, honestly, and so is the Hollywood world. The world of fame is a hard one, where a lot of things are fake. And it’s by reading such books that you realise it. Just because people appear to be happy doesn’t mean they actually are.

What I found interesting in this book – and also very revealing of our screwed, sexist society – is that the world always portrays Carrie Fisher as Pricess Leia (if it can be in her very revealing slave outfit that’s even better). But she was so much more. And of course, I knew it, but I didn’t really know what she was, what she thought, etc. And through this book, I was transported through her thoughts. I discovered that she also wrote poetry. I read through her inner turmoils. When she filmed the first Star Wars movie, Carrie Fisher was roughly my age, and it is very interesting to see that we can have the same kind of thoughts and doubts and uncertainties.

The fact that it was a mix between journal and memoir was also very interesting because it included her thoughts while filming, and her thoughts on it about fourty years later. You can see how she evolved, how she grew, and it’s beautiful.

Carrie Fisher is also a very important figure to me because she spoke up about her mental disorder, and it’s something I really admire her for. She truly is an inspiration. She doesn’t really discuss it in this particular volume, but she does in others and I can’t wait to check them out as well. Her writing is raw and true, and she speaks about important things, about what’s wrong with our society. And I will never get enough of that.


About Non Fiction

Hi readers! I read two non fiction books this month, Regarde les lumières mon amour (Look at all these lights, dear) by Annie Ernaux, and Vous n’aurez pas ma haine (You won’t have my hatred) by Antoine Leiris. I know both those books are French, but if it turns out they have been translated to your language, I definitely recommend them!

In the meantime, I have made a video about non fiction books and more specifically, autobiographies and memoirs. This is about some non fiction books I have read for the past three years, so if you want to watch it, here we go!

The Possession + Simple Passion Review

The Possession (original title: L’occupation) was published by Annie Ernaux in 2002.

Rating: ★★★★☆

Simple Passion (original title: Passion Simple) was published in 1991.

Rating: ★★★★☆

Genre: Non Fiction

I decided to review those two books together because they felt rather similar. Both are non fiction, as all of Ernaux’s books are. And both are about a man, and a passion. Neither man is identified, one is referred to as A. and the other one as W. (for privacy reasons, obviously).

As you may have noticed, I have been reading and reviewing many of Ernaux’s books for the past few month. I studied one of her works in my literature class, and we even got to meet her, which was amazing, so I am trying to read all of her work because I find it extremely inspiring (though those were not my favourites).

Her writing is unique, she shows strength and passion. What struck me in those two works is that to some extent, I understand her. On my own level, that is, but still, it did feel relatable. She shows how she was dedicated, and how she always wanted to know everything about the man she loved. How she always wanted to know everything, etc. And that is perfetly human.

What impresses me too is that she seems afraid of nothing when she writes. Through her works, the reader learns everything about her, she seems to omit nothing, even very personal things like here, whe she talks about her love and sexual relationships. She is straightforward, and that makes her work unique and excellent.

If you have never read any of her works, I wouldn’t recommend those, but if you have and want to read more, then you can definitely check those out! (And unlike others, they have been translated in English, so that’s a good point, right?)

So overall, here are the positive points:
* feminist voice
* straightforward
* awesome writing
* short reads

And the negative poins:
* very personal
* can ocasionally make you feel uneasy


I’m reading yet another one of her works at the moment (the title is translated as I Remain in Darkness, and it was originally published in 1996). However, as this one is in facts excerpts from her diary, I won’t review it because it somehow feels weird. But I’m enjoying it a lot!