Blog: Reading Bingo 2017

Goodreads just told me that I have read 157 books this year. Please allow me to bask in this little moment for a couple of reasons. A) I have only read 364 books all my life. B) I started reading when I was 28. I don’t know what I was doing with my life till then. Quite an opsimath and a sulking one at that. When I read posts on how readers met books when they couldn’t even talk, I mope and mope. Again, one is never too late really. At least that’s how I comfort myself. C) Although I chased a goal every year and pushed myself to reach it (cheated a couple of times by reading picture books ;)), this year, I let go of goals; I read because I felt like reading. That was liberating.

So this is how I look as I write this post:

Happy panda says hi. Image from here.

I wanted to write year-end lists, but I saw TJ and WG’s posts on Reading Bingo. It seemed like a simple yet creative idea to revisit the books I have read this year. Their posts are here and here. And here is my list:

reading-bingo-2017As per the grid, I should choose one book for each square. But I am going to break the rules.

Books with more than 500 pages:
Stephen King’s IT – 1116 pp (I will never know how I survived pages. I should not inflict such wounds on myself anymore. Will you remind me if I forget?)
Philip Pullman His Dark Materials – 1102 pp (Where does Iorek Byrnison live? I want to meet him.)

A forgotten classic:
Does Walt Whitman’s Song of Myself count? Maybe, I have brought it to this square because I want to forget it. 😉

Books that became movies:
Nicola Yoon’s Everything, Everything
The movie was like…

GIF from here.

RJ Palacio’s Wonder (My neighbour — a stranger — and I became friends instantly because we bawled together. Such connections are precious. I missed that neighbour when I watched Coco. I would have so loved to cry with her.)

A book published this year:
Sharanya Manivannan’s The Altar of The Only World

A book with a number in the title:
Reema Moudgil’s Perfect Eight

A book with a mystery:
Abby Fabiaschi’s I Liked My Life

A book of non-ficion:
Matt Haig’s Reasons to Stay Alive (This book saves my life every now and then.)

A book written by someone under thirty:
Kirthi Jayakumar’s The Doodle of Dimashq (Kirthi, you were not 30 when you wrote the book. So yaay!)

A book with non-human characters:
Grid, you should not ask that question to me. I live to read books only animals. However, I must say something about this book because the dog is a poet — Samm Hodges’s Downward Dog: Very Serious Haiku from a Very Serious Dog. I don’t think I can stop with one book. I loved Anita Nair’s Muezza and Baby Jaan, Robin Hobb’s The Farseer Trilogy, and Seigo Kijima’s Polar Bear Postman.

A funny book:
Jerome K Jerome’s Three Men in A Boat (Hi Montmorency!)

A book by a female author:
Square, you are drunk. Go home!

Books with a one-word title:
Nayyirah Waheed’s Salt
Rana Dasgupta’s Solo
Natsuo Kirino’s Out

Books of short stories:
The Best Short Stories of O Henry (I took two years to read that book. Phew! Give me a medal.)
Neil Gaiman’s Fragile Things

Books set on a different continent:
Hans Fallada’s Alone in Berlin
Karan Bajaj’s Johnny Gone Down

The first book by a favourite author:
John Green’s Looking For Alaska (The book hasn’t become my favourite though.)

A book you heard about online:
How do I even answer this question when I hear about books only online! How! To still use the square, let me choose Eva Hornung’s Dog Boy.

A best-selling book:
Gail Honeyman’s Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine

A book based on a true story:
Imbolo Mbue’s Behold The Dreamers (This must be based on SO MANY true stories.)

A book at the bottom of your TBR pile:
Mary Ann Shaffer’s The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society

A book your friend loves:
Since it’s impossible to mention all the 25,872 books, I shall stop with Cecelia Ahern’s Love, Rosie.

Books that scare you:
Pema Chodron’s The Places That Scare You: A Guide to Fearlessness in Difficult Times, When Things Fall Apart: Heart Advice for Difficult Times, and Taking the Leap: Freeing Ourselves from Old Habits and Fears. They topple my universe, question my beliefs, challenge by habits. They are SUPER scary. You know what I mean.

A book that is more than 10 years old:
Munro Leaf’s The Story of Fredinand. The book is 81-years-old.

The second book in a series:
Susan Cooper’s The Dark is Rising. Twitter introduced that book to me. An international readalong is going on now. The books starts on Midwinter’s eve and the boy turns 11. Does it remind you of any other book?

A book with a blue cover:
Benjamin Alire Sáenz’s Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe

Some thoughts on the said books are here.

Thank you for reading. Please tell me about your favourites from this year. 🙂


39 thoughts on “Blog: Reading Bingo 2017

  1. Oh, you chose Dog boy! I love it. This is a great post Deepika. Why is no-one employing you! What a treasure you’d be on any team. “Square, you are drunk. Go home” Love it.

    I’m fascinated that you came to reading so late. I love that you’ve discovered it, but how exactly does one not love reading and then suddenly at 28 fall in love with it, and read such interesting books?!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you, WG, for all the kind words. 🙂 How can I ever finish a list without mentioning our Dog Boy! One of my friends is reading it now and she just sent me a text saying that she is absolutely loving it. I am taking Dog Boy to a lot of hearts, I guess. 🙂

      I can’t figure it out too, WG. I so wish I had started early. A terrible thing happened when I was 28 and books were the only escape then. I am glad I have access to interesting books. I feel lucky! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. The main point is that you found books, and in the scheme of things, 28 is not all that old.

        And, I’m so glad you are spreading the Dog boy joy. I can’t tell you how happy I am to see the book continuing to have a life.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. I love the format of this post. I will return to comment more later. I began reading beyond school assignments at about age six. I recall going to the school library looking for books to read. This year I read a number of very moving works, One was “The Getto Dog”, another was Under The Volcano by Malcolm Lowry.

    I hope so much for a very long Reading Life for you. I’m glad we Met

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Thank you, Mel! It must have been an thrilling experience for the six-year-old in you!

      Nicky is our sweetheart! I am certainly going to write about ‘The Ghetto Dog’ when I am ready to listen to it for another time and read it on e-reader. I am sure it will always break my heart, but I don’t want it any other way.

      I will add ‘Under The Volcano’ to my reading list. Thank you for the comment. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I am taking the easy way out and reproducing the Whatsapp announcement I sent people:

        Arunn’s books are now available as e-books in kindle. There are three popular science books – Nano, Aliengal irukkiraargala, and ullage un uruvam enna? And two novels – Amerikka Desi and Achchuvai Perinum…

        You can search for Arunn Narasimhan on both Amazon dot in and Amazon dot com. Or go directly to the site through his blog announcement here:

        Please buy and read.


        Liked by 1 person

  3. I am fascinated that you came to reading later (NOT LATE) in life. We tend to think over here in the USA that if you don’t hook someone into reading by the time they’re in their twenties, then they just won’t ever be a reader. It’s nice to know that’s NOT true! Congrats on the 157 books. I hope that you continue to have a good reading year next year, with high quality books, no matter how many books you read!

    Liked by 2 people

  4. It is NEVER too late to learn to love reading. I feel very strongly and deeply about this (obviously). And I do know what you mean about those kind of scary books. Scary!

    I love the way you did this. I’m trying to do the Mocha Girls bingo (which I just discovered at the beginning of the month), and it is messing me up because I am hitting so many squares but not in a row. ARGH.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you, Akilah, thank you! ❤ I went woohoo when I saw your bio on Goodreads. I LOVE YA. I am feeding my TBR more by adding all the YA’s you have read.

      Pema Chodron! *shudders*

      I hope you would share the grid with us. I hope it would work. ❤


  5. I haven’t read that particular book by Karan Bajaj, but I’ve read (and loved) The Yoga of Max’s Discontent, so I’m definitely looking to read more from him, and this one looks like a great read. As far as John Green goes, I am looking to read more from him too, and Looking For Alaska is what I’ve been considering. Do you recommend any other book by John Green over Looking for Alaska?
    And 157 books?! You are my hero!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Awwww! Thank you! Thank you! Karan Bajaj was a surprise to me. I look forward to reading his other books too.

      I loved Green’s ‘Turtles All The Way Down’. I didn’t LOVE it when I read it. I just liked it. But it is growing on me and that is a sign of a good book to me.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Wow: what a wonder+ful statistic with a whole lot of heart behind it. That’s amazing. I’m so glad that you’ve discovered so many amazing stories and that they have made you a reader at exactly the right time. I am still reading so I haven’t finished my list of favourites yet, but I really enjoyed reading about all of yours and reading through the comments too. I hope you are reading something good today!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you very much, B.I.P. I saw your update on Goodreads, about reading 275 books this year. You inspire me. Please tell us how you read 2.7.5. this year. I can’t imagine reading THAT many and I am curious to know how you did it. Maybe, you should write a blog on that. It would be lovely. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. By neglecting other parts of life! Also, I log every book I read, because I do not trust my memory and often want to go back to revisit a book I found interesting or enjoyable, so some of the books which GR logs are not long (graphic novels, even the occasional picture book).


  7. Congrats on all the great books you read this year. Very many! I just checked out from the library Mary Oliver’s poetry book Dog Songs — which made me think of you. How we love our dogs. 🙂 I look forward to it. Happy 2018 to you!

    Liked by 1 person

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