Sunday, July 26, 2020

Quick post

Hi, guys!
How are you? 
Well, I guess it is a tricky question, considering how things are in the world right now, but still, I hope you are all safe and sound, at home. And thank you, as always, for stopping by to read my little corner of the web. You can't imagine how much it means to me.

So, I come today to tell you I haven't left you, guys! I know I haven't been posting, but that doesn't mean I haven't been reading. I've read two short books I will talk about today, but first, a quick explanation. Many people have asked why I'm not reading, given the huge amount of time that came with quarantine, and I have to say, it was a bad time to fall into a reading slump. But it's not just that. I happen to be using these time to work on my thesis to finally graduate college, and that, folks, takes a lot of time and energy. When I spend a lot of time researching, writing, editing, and translating, I end up with zero energy left to concentrate on reading, preferring to watch a movie or cartoons, or listen to music. I do however, plan to continue reading, but so far I think my focus should be on my thesis right now. Obviously my TBR keeps growing, and I've been adding a lot of books lately, but I want to be able to fully enjoy them, and meet my 2020 Reading Challenge with plenty of great books. 

However, just as I said, I was able to read two short books, both in Spanish. The first one was this one:

Tales and Legends of the Maori (2009, hardcover)

It's basically a compilation of traditional folk tales from the vast mythology created by the Pacific islanders. This definitely has to do with watching Disney's Moana, a movie that instantly became a favorite of mine, and if you haven't seen it, just go for it. Do it! It's not your typical princess fairytale, and the visuals are among the most beautiful I've ever seen. 

Anyway, upon watching it, I remembered I had this book, and with a whole new interest in the demi-god Maui and the traditional Maori folk tales, I swallowed this book in a very short amount of time. It's really amazing, and I'm glad the authors decided to put together these stories in one volume, because they are so worth to be remembered, keeping this culture alive. I'm personally fascinated by traditional legends, and how the different communities explained natural phenomena that we today don't even question, like the path of the sun in the sky, and the origin of fire; stories that were narrated and passed from generation to generation, and became a part of a entire people's identity. It's nothing short of amazing, and so, the book was impossible to put down. 

The thing is, I don't know if this book is available in English (although I know it is in French), but wherever language you speak, I encourage you to look for the Maori legends and give them a read. It's absolutely worth it (and for the love of God, watch Moana!)

And the other book I've read, over an hour and a half, is this one:

Tales and Legends of the Armenian (2010, hardcover). 

This one hits close to home, and it brought back some wonderful memories. I don't know if I've mentioned before that I come from an Armenian family, but I do, and storytelling is an essential part of our identity. Many of the legends compilated in this book come from oral tradition, as, perhap, the people in Armenia, in the first couple of centuries, couldn't read or write, but they knew the stories by heart, and told them to their children and grandchildren, passing them through generations the same way they would leave inheritances and heirlooms. I myself spent a big part of my childhood listening to my grandmother as she narrated these kind of stories, about kings, and lost rings found in a fish's belly, and little old ladies with big hearts... Needless to say, I love my heritage, and I'm proud of my people, even after being raised in a different country, and without having endured the difficulties war and genocide put my ancestors through. 

Through this short volume, the oral tradition can become immortal, and that's the best part of it. The Armenian culture is vast and rich, and not just because stories like the ones in this book, but also, because of the delicious food, the beautiful music, the rich language, the amazing dancing, and the fascinating architecture, among many other things. After all, it is one of the oldest civilizations in the world, and one of the first Christian ones in history. 

So, in short, the stories in both books are captivating, and once you start reading, you just can't stop, as they suck you in and keep you glued to the pages until you are done. Even if they are not available in your language, I sincerely encourage you to look up for these traditional legends, and spend an hour or two getting lost in both the Maori and Armenian cultures and mythical universes. 

Today, more than ever, we need the escape of fiction, don't you think?


Thank you so much for stopping by! I can't believe the amount of people who stop and read these little articles I write, but I'm immensely grateful to all of you. 

I'll try my best to keep reading, but obviously, thank you for your patience and support!

I hope you have a great week, and stay safe! 
'til next time!



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