Down and Out in Paris and London
*rambling coming soon*
Homage to Catalonia
when you go to Spain just to Kill Fascists but end up in the middle of a political mess and an anarchist revolution, by George Orwell.
It's him telling the reader what he saw and did in Catalonia, about his military service in the POUM and life in the trenches, how cool anarchist Barcellona and the militias were, and how he had to flee to save his life because the Soviet Union joined the fight.
this is the fucking George Orwell book everyone should be talking about, read this:
«The Anarchists were still in virtual control of Catalonia and the revolution was still in full swing.To anyone who had been there since the beginning it probably seemed even in December or January that the revolutionary period was ending; but when one came straight from England the aspect of Barcelona was something startling and overwhelming. It was the first time that I had ever been in a town where the working class was in the saddle. Practically every building of any size had been seized by the workers and was draped with red flags or with the red and black flag of the Anarchists; every wall was scrawled with the hammer and sickle and with the initials of the revolutionary parties; almost every church had been gutted and its images burnt. Churches here and there were being systematically demolished by gangs of workmen. Every shop and cafe had an inscription saying that it had been collectivized; even the bootblacks had been collectivized and their boxes painted red and black. Waiters and shop-walkers looked you in the face and treated you as an equal. Servile and even ceremonial forms of speech had temporarily disappeared. Nobody said 'Senior' or 'Don' or even 'Usted'; everyone called everyone else 'Comrade' and 'Thou', and said 'Salud!' instead of 'Buenos dias'. Tipping was forbidden by law; almost my first experience was receiving a lecture from a hotel manager for trying to tip a lift-boy. There were no private motor-cars, they had all been commandeered, and all the trams and taxis and much of the other transport were painted red and black. The revolutionary posters were everywhere, flaming from the walls in clean reds and blues that made the few remaining advertisements look like daubs of mud. Down the Ramblas, the wide central artery of the town where crowds of people streamed constantly to and fro, the loudspeakers were bellowing revolutionary songs all day and far into the night. And it was the aspect of the crowds that was the queerest thing of all. In outward appearance it was a town in which the wealthy classes had practically ceased to exist. Except for a small number of women and foreigners there were no 'well-dressed' people at all.Practically everyone wore rough working-class clothes, or blue overalls, or some variant of the militia uniform. All this was queer and moving. There was much in it that I did not understand, in some ways I did not even like it, but I recognized it immediately as a state of affairs worth fighting for. Also I believed that things were as they appeared, that this was really a workers' State and that the entire bourgeoisie had either fled, been killed, or voluntarily come over to the workers' side; I did not realize that great numbers of well-to-do bourgeois were simply lying low and disguising themselves as proletarians for the time being.
Together with all this there was something of the evil atmosphere of war. The town had a gaunt untidy look, roads and buildings were in poor repair, the streets at night were dimly lit for fear of air--raids, the shops were mostly shabby and half-empty. Meat was scarce and milk practically unobtainable, there was a shortage of coal, sugar, and petrol, and a really serious shortage of bread. Even at this period the bread-queues were often hundreds of yards long. Yet so far as one could judge the people were contented and hopeful. There was no unemployment, and the price of living was still extremely low; you saw very few conspicuously destitute people, and no beggars except the gipsies. Above all, there was a belief in the revolution and the future, a feeling of having suddenly emerged into an era of equality and freedom. Human beings were trying to behave as human beings and not as cogs in the capitalist machine. In the barbers' shops were Anarchist notices (the barbers were mostly Anarchists) solemnly explaining that barbers were no longer slaves. In the streets were coloured posters appealing to prostitutes to stop being prostitutes. To anyone from the hard-boiled, sneering civilization of the English--speaking races there was something rather pathetic in the literalness with which these idealistic Spaniards took the hackneyed phrases of revolution. At that time revolutionary ballads of the naivest kind, all about proletarian brotherhood and the wickedness of Mussolini, were being sold on the streets for a few centimes each. I have often seen an illiterate militiaman buy one of these ballads, laboriously spell out the words, and then, when he had got the hang of it, begin singing it to an appropriate tune.»
(beware, as he writes multiple times: this book is only what he saw and understood, it's not objective truth. It's a small and flawed (but very interesting imho) portion of the bigger picture!).
*rambling coming soon*
One, No One and One Hundred Thousand
Vitangelo Moscarda has an identity crisis because his wife makes him notice his crooked nose, something he never saw in the 28 years of his life. "If I wasn't for others what I thought I was for myself until now, who was I?". He realizes we're not only one person but also, well, no one and one hundred thousand ones, and he'll take advantage of this. Sounds crazy? That's because he is. He also makes perfect sense. This book is very serious and hilarious!
explain it in an even worse way: everyone thinks Vitangelo Moscarda has gone fishing because he doesn't want to capitalize on poor people anymore (I'm not like you,(dead) father!!!)
*rambling coming soon*
The Baron in the Trees
Young Cosimo Piovasco di Rondò has a quarrel with his father, climbs up a tree and declares he'll never get down, and so he does. He lives a long and fulfilling life travelling from branch to branch, and earns the respect of the everyone around him
The story is set in the 18th century and is narrated by his younger brother who tries to write down all of his and other people's memories of Cosimo to tell his amazing tale.
very uhh, lighthearted? ~whimsical~ ? . It's cool to read about how he managed to live up there, how he found his own way to connect with people.
Almost entirely the log of Mark Watney, an astronaut who's stuck on Mars and has to use all of his sciency knowledge to survive.
Mark is so damn funny (“I don’t want to come off as arrogant here, but I’m the best botanist on the planet.”), and he never gives up. After all that happens to him, he still somehow finds the strenght to keep going and find a solution, it's really I've also read that, for science fiction, it's pretty realistic
IF YOU DON'T LIKE IT YOU SMELL BAD AND I WON'T INVITE YOU TO MY PAJAMA PARTY >:( !!1!!1!!
Jokes aside, it really is one of my favourite things ever written, and definitely my favourite short story
A not-so-veiled critique of the Stalinist Soviet Union from someone who actually experienced it. 1984 was inspired by this book, but they're still very different. *more rambling coming soon*
1984 (I need to get this out of my system)
I had the incredible luck of reading it without knowing wat it was about, I really liked it. The Ministry of Love part especially kept me glued to the pages. I see why some people might find it dull however (it's a novel by someone who was good at writing essays, if it makes any sense)
Please for the love of God let's stop citing this book. I think it's good but it's MASSIVELY overrated. Let's memory hole it like it's literally 1984. Take it away especially from the right/far right, why are they so obsessed with a book written by a democratic socialist?? Whenever I see people using it to rant about how socialism bad I want to scream at them "this is a leftist book did you even read it". It pisses me off so much because they think it gives weight to their arguments, and that makes them look cultured.
It seems to me nobody ever mentions that Winston and Julia aren't ordinary people. It's the proles who are the laymans! The Outer Party members are a minority made of broken misanthropes who are surveilled and fed propaganda 24/7, and who also make said propaganda. The proles, despite the war and the Party's exploitation, are blissful in their ignorance. They DON'T HAVE TELESCREENS they're considered too dumb to rebel anyways (smarter ones are killed), they can enjoy entretainment (made by the Party), and are the ones who stayed human, who still love and care about each other unlike the misanthropes mentioned before. What I'm trying to say is that you, the reader, would almost certainly be a prole in this world. Has anyone actually fucking read this book???
a dumb thing:
willow-herb is a flower. For whatever reason they were just "weeds" in my italian translation, so when I read this in english:
"And the bombed sites where the plaster dust swirled in the air and the willow-herb straggled over the heaps of rubble;"
it was a surprise. It struck me more than it should have. "purple flowers in this gloomy book?!". I knew that Orwell loved nature, especially the english countryside, so this was a nice little detail :)
Then, after a few pages, I read:
"[Winston's] small but childish handwriting straggled up and down the page, shedding first its capital letters"
and I thought "wow, straggled like the flowers!". It's probably a coincidence. end of dumb thing
C'era due volte il barone Lamberto (Twice Upon a Time the baron Lamberto)
I remember almost nothing of this one. There's an old rich baron named Lamberto who lives on an island in a lake. He found out that if people repeat someone's name that person lives longer, so he literally hired people to do so all day in his mansion and installed speakers everywhere to listen to them. And then stuff happens? All I know is that it was weird.
But what I remember very well is that my class had to compete with another on a quiz about it. The questions were so specific that not even the author could have remembered the answers. I was one of, like, the three people who had read the book in my group, the other class cheated.
Il Mistero Del Cane (The Mystery of the Dog)
A group of kids finds a wounded dog on Christmas day, they name him Febo. They take care of him, cure him (but he still limps) and they all adopt him. But *spoiler* one spring day Febo disappears and never returns.
Lots of nostalgia for this book, especially the illustrations. I remember the bigger brother being sad about having to wear long pants, the picture of this dog in the frosty grass, the shed where they kept him, their efforts to keep him warm and feed him, how they had to organize and take turns and did everything without telling their parents, and how happy they were in spring when they played by the river with him, when Febo tried to catch eels (I think?), when they all played football and febo was surprisingly good despite his limp. The ending was totally unexpected, I felt so sad for the kids and really wondered why Febo had run away, I coudnt explain it. I think it was the first book I read with an open end
Many years later I found out that my best friend had also read this book and was shocked by the finale.
my reading list is so long but all my books are still catching dust :/ (these aren't the only ones I read!)
(these aren't recommendations, I don't want to make a separate page)
Johnny the Homicidal Maniac
old comic from Jhonen Vasquez, the creator of Invader Zim. Made of the best kind of edgy dark humor.
an interesting Tumblr post where Jhonen talks about the comic why did you delete your account man :( :
"Johnny was never intended to be a depiction of a person suffering from any mental condition steeped in reality besides being a pompous turd. What he deals with is less fact-based mental disorder and more Lovecraftian.
Johnny was always meant to be based on a version of me that would have been one of those people you know, the ones that, sure they maybe got made fun of for being “weird” but were twisted into some disgusting, pathetic parody of the enlightened but thicker-skinned person they maybe should have become.
At the time of making those old books, I was having fun MAKING fun of a person I saw I could easily become without a decent amount of self confidence and a functional sense of humor, the dude that rants and rants about how much they hate a thing while becoming consumed by that thing, to where your identity is impressing others with how angry you are, how much smarter you are than the people you look down on and how everything would be better if you decided who lived and who died, what was right and what was wrong.
Nny, in my head, was a mix of relatable ideas thrown in with unknowable, cosmic horror. Person who gets made fun of for being different? Relatable. Person who lives out the nasty-fun wish-fulfillment of hurting everyone who hurts them? Ugly, but super relatable. interdimensional nightmare thing that uses weak-willed types for its own interdimensional nightmare thing plans? Maybe not as relatable, but cool. Filter all that through my dorky, 19 year old brain and you end up with the goofy mess JTHM turned into!
Now and then I get an angry email from someone commenting on my insensitive, wildly inaccurate portrayal of mental illness. Rather then respond to those people, I just stay quiet because those people are fucking crazy, am I right??"
if you're intrested, the Director's Cut TPB has all the Johnny comics and some extra things, "Squee's Wonderful Big Giant Book of Unspeakable Horrors" (which is also nice) has the Squee spinoff and the extra comics from the original 7 issues. I still have to read the spinoff "I Feel Sick"...
I read this comic when I was way too young for it (about 12?), but I was being made fun of for being weird a lot in that period, and I think it helped me no to become like Johnny (the whole "consumed by what they hate" thing) ? Thank you Mr. Vasquez, I guess??
*description coming soon*
*description coming soon*
Mob Psycho 100
*better description coming soon* It's a manga, but mangas are japanese comics so
*description coming soon*
The Diary of a Teenage Girl: An Account in Words and Pictures
*better description coming soon* not only a comic, but I didn't know where to put it
For Zerocalcare's comics go here. I wish I had more comics :(
Extremely cute comics about a vampire and werewolf couple. From Sarah's Scribbles, but the artstyle is more realistic.
Yes I still think it's worth reading. Just... just ignore all the drama, pretend that nothing after Act 7 and the Snapchat Epilogues ever happened. The Unofficial Homestuck Collection is the best way to do it. The Paradox Space comics are also nice.
"Homestuck is fucking trash" -every Homestuck fan ever and they're right
My three girlfriends. And yes, they smoke weed X
The infamous weed smoking girlfriends Tumblr post in comic form. Amazing shitpost
Sarah's Scribbles X
I've been reading these for a very long time, I think they're cute :)
Shen Comix X
Idk they make me smile :) . gotta be honest, I'm not a big fan of the new horrorish comics he's currently making
whatever these are called
Why You Hate Contemporary Architecture X
this person fucking despises contemporary architecture and I can relate
* :p *