Birthday Book Tag | IcthusBookCorner

Hey there, everyone! It’s my birthday today, and I’m officially an old lady. Mentally and emotionally, I’ve been an old lady for a long time now. Well, this means I can finally bring you this super fun tag I saw over at Jawahir the Bookworm. They told me the original creator is Antonia @ Always books. Go check out their blogs if you feel like it. Let’s get into it!


BIRTHDAY CAKE — a book with a plot that seems cliché but you adore it anyway.

I don’t know! This question is quite hard. As you can probably tell from the reviews I post, I don’t usually read “cliché” type books. I tend to read a lot of non-fiction and poetry which obviously don’t contain clichés. (And I’m not saying this to be “#different”, please don’t hate me.)
I got it! I have to choose Pumpkinheads by Rainbow Rowell. This book was quite a wild card for me. I was looking for something different from what I usually read; I need fluff, cuteness and lightness. That was precisely what Pumpkinheads gave me. It’s far from the best book I ever read or anything, but it was a fun read. I did adore it, but it was very much cliché.

PARTY GUESTS — your most anticipated book release for this year

If I’m being honest, I have no idea what books will be released this year. I really what to read Felix Ever After by Kacen Callender and The Once and Future Witches by Alix E. Harrow, but I’m pretty sure these are both books from last year. Can I just say those, please?
Wait, I know one! It’s The Final Revival of Opal & Nev by Dawnie Walton(yes yes yes yes I remembered one) Do I need to explain my anticipation? The Final Revival of Opal & Nev is set in the ’70s, and it’s about and afro-punk duo. AMAZING

BIRTHDAY PRESENTS — a book that surprised you with how much you loved it.

This one is obvious, A Moveable Feast by Ernest Hemingway. I had no idea what this book was about when I bought it. It had an interesting title and was on sale, so I wasn’t expecting much. It ended up being one of y favourite books of 2020. I loved learning about Hemingway’s life in Paris and his life as a young author. Truly magnificent.

“HAPPY BIRTHDAY” SONG — a book that certainly deserves all the hype it got.

I don’t know if I’ve recently read a book that had a lot of hype surrounding it. Maybe, Hidden Figures by Margot Lee Shetterly! Was there hype? I feel like it had because of the film. Honestly, it was an interesting book. I was expecting a bit more, but it’s a good book for what it is.
It talked about the civil rights movement, NASA and women of colour working at NASA and kicking ass.

HAPPY MUSIC — a book with some very beautiful and truly meaningful quotes.

I don’t know if their beautiful, but they are meaningful and relevant, Women, Race & Class by Angela Y. Davis. This book is a must for anyone looking for insight into the connection between different forms of oppression. This book was objective, concise and exactly what I was hoping for.

GETTING OLDER — a book that you read a long time ago but you think would appreciate more if y ou read it as a more mature reader.

For this one, I’m choosing The Appointment by Herta Müller. I read this book way too young the got nothing from it. I think I was 13 when I read it, and it was overall a boring experience. The book is about a young clothing-factory worker living during a totalitarian regime if I remember correctly, I really need to reread it.

SWEET BIRTHDAY MEMORIES — a book that kept you incredibly happy during a sad or demanding period of your life.

Well, here I have to mention Blindness by José Saramago. I read this book at a difficult time during my mid-late teens. This was actually the book that made me fall in love with books again. It made me realize I needed book and literature to escape what I was going through.
If you haven’t, I highly recommend you read this book, it’s perfect. The man got a noble for a reason.


I hope you enjoyed this tag. It was super fun for me to think about these questions/topics. Please, let me know if you have ever read any of these books and what books you would choose for these topics.
Keep on reading.

You can find me at:

My Thoughts on Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov |IcthusBookCorner (my biggest review yet)

Hey everyone! Today I want to talk about a book that did nothing but worsen my mental state, Lolita by Nabokov.

I’ve talked about this book on my bookstagram (follow me there if you want to follow my readings more closely), and I had a lot of feeling while reading it. This book was published back in 1955, and it is now considered a classic by a lot of people. You probably know it is a book about and from the perspective of a paedophile, Humbert Humbert. It follows him during his middle age as he finds himself obsessed with the nymphet Delores Hayes.

I had been hearing about this book my whole life and knew people either loved it or hated it, so I decided to put it off for a while in fear. Once I finally decided to read it, I went into it with no preconceived judgements so it wouldn’t ruin the experience.

The first thing I need to say about this book is that I loved the writing style, really really loved it. Can we talk about the fact that Nabokov isn’t an English native speaker? I applaud Nabokov’s mastery of the English language. He uses English better than most writers whose first language is English. He is daring with his words; he is pure genius. It is the type of writing I love, you know? It’s poetic, and it’s not sparse, and he uses flowery language.

In the beginning, it was quite tolerable, but as it went on became progressively more upsetting. The first person narration was making me feel sick. Sometimes it physically hurt me to read this book, like someone was squeezing my heart. Never in my life had I read a book that made me this uncomfortable. I’m just glad I’m someone who can enjoy a book and dislike the main characters, otherwise I’m pretty sure this book would have killed me.
Because it’s first-person narration, we are inside Humbert’s head, and the problem is that this person’s head is a terrible place. We have to be beholders of grooming, gaslighting and abuse. Humbert has no redeeming quality, which is both terrible for the reader but the only correct choice. Nabokov created a character that no one could pity because he (Humber) is just a horrifying human being. However, the author was still able to create a multi-dimensional character, and that is not usual and something I appreciate. There is a lot of depth, there is a lot to dig into, I love it.

This book was notably hard to read, but for some reason, I couldn’t stop. One reason for this was, like I said, the writing. Even so, there was something else, something that made me want to know what was going to happen next, something that got me hooked.

The book is divided into two parts. The first one is before the abuse, and it follows Humbert from his pre-adolescent self to when he gets to be a disgusting human to Lolita. The second part accompanies him from the moment the first part left off to when the book is supposedly being written. The first half of the book was much easier to read than the second, most likely because there is a smaller amount of sexual assault.

The only negative aspect of this book, for me, is the last two chapters. The book could have an amazing ending, but, for some ulterior motive, Nabokov decided to go with underwhelming.

To end this, I feel the need to say a few things. First of all, I don’t believe this book romanticizes or glorifies paedophilia. From what I read from the author, and what I gathered from reading Lolita itself, I believe Nabokov wanted to create a reality which the average person wouldn’t have access to. He wrote one of the most brutal accounts of abuse there is. I think this is an important piece of literature, if not one of the best.

Finally, I gave this book 4.5 out of 5 stars. I recommend it to everyone who can get into a story without liking the main character and to whom abuse is not a severe trigger.

Bye, keep on reading.

Book Adaptation Tag |IcthusBookCorner

Hello everyone, hope you are having a great week!

It is time for another tag. Today I am doing the Book Adaptation Tag because I was tagged by the amazing Eleanor Sophie. I’m super excited, this looks so much fun. Let us get into it!


What is the last book adaptation movie you saw?

I think it was the Portuguese film The Mystery of Sintra, an adaptation of the book The Mystery of the Sintra Road, written by Eça de Queirós and Ramalho Ortigão. I never read the book, so I have nothing to compare it to. 

What book movie are you most excited about?

Uuuuuuh, maybe Nomadland??It is based on a non-fiction book, and I feel like it is really up my alley.

Which upcoming book movie will you definitely not see?

I cannot think of any! Probably any of which I wouldn’t be interested in reading the book either. 

Which book movie would you NEVER watch again?

EASY! Alice Through the Looking Glass, this film was really just a waste of time and money. TERRIBLE!!

Is there a movie you saw that made you want to read the book if you had not yet?

Yes, yes, yes! If Beale Street Could Talk, this film was just perfect. PERFECT, I tell you. Now I really want to read the book by James Baldwin.

Conversely, is there a movie that made you never want to read the book?

Not that I can remember! That would only happen if it was a film that is really not my thing, and I went into it knowing it is not my thing. Am I making any sense?

Name an adaptation that has almost nothing to do with the book it is supposedly based on.

Honestly, I cannot think of any film I have seen that have been that different from the book. It might come to me later, but right I have no answer for this.

Have you ever left the theatre during a movie adaptation because it was so bad?

No! If I paid for it, I’ll be there till the end. I would also prefer, in that situation, to watch the entire film just to have good points to trash it later on. 

Do you prefer to watch the movie first, or read the book first?

Book first for sure! I almost always read the book first. I love both cinema and literature a lot. But it is easier to have a good book rather than a good adaptation. A film adaptation is like an interpretation of an interpretation so it’s easier for things to get lost. So reading the book first is always a good idea. While watching the film first might put you off of reading the book.

How do you feel about movie adaptations that age characters up? (ex. Characters that are in middle school, but in the movies, they’re all 18+)

On the one hand, most of the time, teenagers in books do not act like teenagers in real life, which annoys me. On the other hand, having 20-year olds and 30-year-olds playing highschoolers is just as annoying.

So, I guess I’m with Eleanor on this one. 

Do you get angry when the actors don’t look like you thought the characters would?

I mean, if a character is a person of colour and the actor chosen to play them is white… that irritates me. Otherwise, I’m okay with it, I guess. 

Is there a movie you liked better than its book?

It is rare for me like a film better than a book, but it has probably happened before. The only thing I can think of now is the TV series adaptation of Elena Ferrante’s My Brilliant Friend series.

Name a book that you would love to see as a movie.

Let me think about this! Death at Intervals by José Saramago would make an amazing adaptation. I can feel it. Honestly, just fund me so I can do it myself. 

I’m going to tag:


You can find me at:

The Master’s Tools Will Never Dismantle the Master’s House by Audre Lorde – Book Review

This book is a collection of essays on the power of women by the self-described black, lesbian, mother, warrior and poet, Audre Lorde.

The collection has four essays: Poetry is Not A Luxury, Use of Erotic, The Master’s Tools Will Never Dismantle the Master’s House, and Uses of Anger. Every single one of these essays touches on different topics that concern women, and black women in specific; focussing on issues of womanhood, black identity, the LGBTQ community, and the vital roles that art and community must play in overthrowing the patriarchy.

This little book is loaded with heavy, theoretical ideas but Lorde’s writing is amazing enough to draw most of us in, and I found myself nodding along to must of it. These essays remain true to this day and her judgement and criticisms are as sharp and insightful now as they were when she first wrote them.

My favourite essay was, without doubt, the Uses of Anger. I found it to be as important as fitting with the times, while also being unapologetic and brilliant.

Her urge to unity and intersectionality is flawless due to the assurance that these do not mean conformity but accepting everyone’s individual traits.

Overall, I would highly recommend this essay collection about feminism and intersectionality to everyone, but especially if you’re looking for intersectional texts.

I gave this book 5 out of 5 stars.

Bye, keep on reading. 

Small Gods by Terry Pratchett – Book Review

First of all, I want to thank my lovely friend Mónica for lending me her copy of this book. Terry Pratchett is her favourite author, so I asked her which of his books I should read from him, this was her recommendation. It’s all on her.

Small Gods is the 13th book in the Discworld series and it was published in 1992. It’s about Brutha, a novice priest of the God Om, who possesses a perfect memory. Brutha can’t read, he’s regarded as a bit dumb and it’s known that he will be a novice priest forever. However, unlike everyone else in the book, he is the only one that believes in Om. Everything in this book happens because of Brutha, who truly believes while still being a good and noble person.

Pratchett is an excellent writer, I found his style to be funny, touching, not to mention how great he was at making references to religions in our world and criticizing them as part of the book’s world.
The only negative aspect for me was the repetitiveness: Om’s lack of power and constant fretting about it, Brutha’s earnest but naive loyalty, and Vorbis’s malevolent determination are repeatedly pointed out and it gets quite annoying after a while.

As you can probably tell, the cons weren’t enough to make me dislike it and I found the book to be really well executed. The author brought light to problems in organized religion that need to be discussed and did so while making me laugh.

I gave this book 4 out of 5 stars.
Bye, keep on reading.


Links to the book: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/15798103-small-gods
https://www.wook.pt/livro/small-gods-terry-pratchett/1500093

Poems to Night by Rainer Maria Rilke – Book Review

Poems to Night is a poetry collection of twenty-two poems by the Austrian poet Rainer Maria Rilke.

To be honest, I don’t think this was the best to start with Rilke’s work, but since it was sent to by Pushkin Press in exchange for a review, I went with the flow.

I truly loved most the poems however, there were a few which I found difficult to connect with a bit. All things considered, I can’t know if this is because of Rilke’s writing or due to the translation, we all know poetry is something hard to get right when translating. 

Rilke does not bother us with useless long verses which the only use is to fill pages, or with unnecessarily complicated rhymes. He gives the reader an insight into the connection one has with the world around themself and one’s mind. As you can see in the following verse:

“Is pain – as soon as the ploughshare,
labouring, naturally reaches a new layer –
is pain not good? And what can it mean, the last
interrupting us in the depths of such affliction?”

I think that given the year we have had; there are certain feelings brought out in these poems that we can relate to today, those of isolation and loneliness, which we can track to the author’s time during WW2. These are the things many of us have to deal with at night before we drift off to sleep.

All in all, this is a beautifully written book collection with a good translation, as fas as my translation knowledge goes. I recommend it to anyone who likes poetry as well as to anyone in search of a book to get in tune with their feelings and emotions.

I gave it 4 out of 5 stars.

Bye, keep on reading.  

End of Year Book Survey 2020

**2020 READING STATS**

Number Of Books You Read: 31 (not my best year)
Number of Re-Reads: none
Genre You Read The Most From: Non-fiction, both feminist and anti-Racist literature

Here we go!


  • Best Book You Read In 2020?

It has to be a tie between A Moveable Feast by Hemingway and Kafka on the Shore by Haruki Murakami. I read the first one this month after a reading slump and it really got me back into the mood to read. The other I read during January before were all it by this neverending pandemic and all I can say is that I’m glad it was my first book by Murakami. 

  • Book You Were Excited About & Thought You Were Going To Love More But Didn’t?

For this one I have t go with How to Build a Girl by Caitlin Moran. The concept looked really good but unfortunately, the delivery and writing were not. I can’t tell you if it’s only this book, or if it’s her tone or outlook in general I disliked, the only thing I can say is that it was overall a disappointment. 

  • Favourite new author, you discovered in 2020?

I have to keep with the first answer and say, Murakami and Hemingway. 

  • Most action-packed/thrilling/unputdownable book of the year?

No doubt this title belongs to The Time Machine by H. G. Wells. I was so glad to confirm my love for H. G. Wells’ books. Highly recommend this one to all the sci-fi fans. 

  • Book You Read In 2020 That You Would Be MOST Likely To Re-Read Next Year?

Moby Dick by Herman Melville just because I feel like I need to give it another chance. I feel like if I re-read it, I might actually really like it. 

  • Favourite cover of a book you read in 2020?

Pumpkinheads by Rainbow Rowell and illustrated by Faith Erin Hicks, it’s just so cute. 

  • The most memorable character of 2020?

Nakata from Kafka on the Shore we all need to collectively hug him. 

  • Most beautifully written book read in 2020?

Death with Interruptions (or in the original title: As Intermitências da Morte) by the great, the best, the only José Saramago. We all know I love his writing with all my soul, nothing new. 

  • Most Thought-Provoking/ Life-Changing Book of 2020?

I have to go with Death with Interruptions by Saramago or Women, Race & Class by Angela Y. Davis.

  • Book you can’t believe you waited UNTIL 2020 to finally read? 

Of Love and Other Demons by Gabriel García Márquez. I just needed to read all of his small books first before picking up Hundred Years of Solitude get to know his writing style. 

  • Favourite Passage/Quote From A Book You Read In 2020

This is easy:

“When spring came, even the false spring, there were no problems except where to be happiest. The only thing that could spoil a day was people and if you could keep from making engagements, each day had no limits. People were always the limiters of happiness except for the very few that were as good as spring itself.” ― Ernest Hemingway, A Moveable Feast

This has to be the most beautiful, most honest paragraph to ever be written. 

  • Shortest & Longest Book You Read In 2020?

The shortest is the essay Fascism and Democracy by George Orwell and the longest is obviously Moby Dick. 

  • Favourite Non-Romantic Relationship Of The Year

I know this one, it has to be Nakata and the truck driver from Kafka on the Shore. Just so sweet and pure, aaaaaah. 

  • Favourite Book You Read in 2020 From An Author You’ve Read Previously

Death with Interruptions by Saramago, my love for his books is the most authentic form of love.

  • Book That Put A Smile On Your Face/Was The Most FUN To Read?

Death with Interruptions by Saramago! It this getting repetitive? 

  • Book That Made You Cry Or Nearly Cry in 2020?

It was a very dry year for me, book crying wise. No triers, whatsoever. 

  • Most Unique Book You Read In 2020?

Poems to Night by Rainer Maria Rilke. Some of the best poetry I have ever read. 

  • Book That Made You The Most Mad (doesn’t necessarily mean you didn’t like it)?

The Suffragettes from the Little Black Classics collection. The part about the anti-suffragette movement was infuriating.


Well, I guess this is it. Let me know if you read any of the books I mentioned and what books fit these questions regarding your reading year.

I what to thank The Perpetual Page Turner for once again sharing with us her Annual End Of Year Survey, please go check out her blog.

Bye, keep on reading.

A Moveable Feast by Ernest Hemingway – Book Review

If you are lucky enough to have lived in Paris as a young man, then wherever you go for the rest of your life, it stays with you, for Paris is a moveable feast.” – Ernest Hemingway

A Moveable Feast is Ernest Hemingway’s memoir of his time spent in Paris after the war and beginning of his writing career. He was living alongside other writers such as Gertrude Stein, Joyce, Pound, Madox Ford and F. Scott Fitzgerald.

One day, I was roaming around a book shop, as one does, and came across this book. I felt this unspeakable urge to buy this book knowing nothing about it whatsoever. Once I got home and searched it on Goodreads, I saw it had more than four stars I thought to myself: “Nice to know this was not a waste of money”. It sat on my bookshelf for about a year, I picked it put this month and simply could not put it down for a second.

In this book, you read about someone becoming a writer and romanticize about it overlooking the fact that Hemingway describes going hungry somedays so that his wife and child could eat. I loved reading about the friendship between Hemingway and Fitzgerald and getting to see the perception the author had of him as both a person and a writer. It was just so heartwarming.

Every chapter in A Moveable Feast is sort of a little story from his life. You get a varied idea of what he was up to and came to realize that he had kind of a problem with gambling, most likely because he thought it was the only way he had to make money.

I gave this book 5 out of 5 stars and highly recommend it.

“I would stand and look out over the roofs of Paris and think, ‘Do not worry. You have always written before and you will write now. All you have to do is write one true sentence. Write the truest sentence you know.’ So finally I would write one true sentence, and go on from there.” – Ernest Hemingway

Me and White Supremacy Workbook by Layla F. Saad – Book Review

“I think whites are carefully taught not to recognize white privilege, as males are taught not to recognize male privilege.” – Peggy McIntosh

Me And White Supremacy Workbook by Layla F. Saad is a pioneer, anti-racism book for people holding white privilege to begin examining and dismantling their complicity in the oppressive system of white supremacy.

Far too often, I see white people blaming other white people and declaring them as the problem that causes racism, to distance themselves from the problem. I was happy to see that being addressed in the book.

If like me, you were always taught that racism is bad and that people should all have the same rights and opportunities, this book still serves as an excellent tool for digging out internalized messages regarding race that you might not have been aware of.

The only negative aspect I have to point out is that the book starts with multiple separate chapters about the author when the intent of the book is not to get to know the author but to critically analyse your privilege, which to me felt slightly off.

Needless to say, I have learned a lot. The questions didn’t allow for any hesitation, and I know that, though I have a lot of work to do, I now have basic knowledge on how to continue the work.

I recommend it as a tool for anyone who is or wants to be anti-racism. (and if you don’t want to what are you doing reading this)

I gave this book 4 out of 5 starts.

Given the current social climate, instead of telling you to keep on reading, I’ll provide you with a website which has both petitions and donations for you to take part in. Remember that what is happing right now in the US is not a US problem, there is racism in every country and our responsibility is to take action.

Stay safe and resist the oppression!

Link: https://biglink.to/forBLM

She Represents: 44 Women Who Are Changing Politics . . . and the World, by Caitlin Donohue – Book Review

She represents is a non-fiction title written by Caitlin Donohue. It brings light to 44 powerhouse women around the world.

First of all, I’m glad African and South American women were mentioned, however, in my opinion, the book would have had more impact if the approach had been even more global (more Asian and European women) since it focused mainly on women in the United States. The author gives us a summary of these diverse and interesting women in less than 3 pages per person. Not to mention, I was extremely happy to see a wide range of political ideologies represented.

The background stories come to life as a result of the references to their personalities or personal anecdotes. Those make the woman in power feel more relatable. I found the artwork to be both inviting and full of life (and I believe there might be more artwork to come, given it was only an arc).

I reckon this book would be nice for those seeking to learn more about women in politics, current political circumstances.

Thank you to Caitlin Donohue, Zest Books, and Netgalley for providing me with a free ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review. Don’t forget that She Represents releases on September 1, 2020.

I give this book 3.5 out of 5 stars.