If one cannot enjoy reading a book over and over again, there is no use in reading it at all.
– Oscar Wilde (1854-1900)
In a world gone crazy, how can we stay sane and keep an open mind? One way is to read more fiction from around the world!
The wonderful thing about reading good stories is that our imagination is awakened and our attention is captured. We can step out of our shoes (and how we usually see the world) and step into the shoes of one or other of the characters. When we do this (and it’s not always easy), we get much more out of any book we read.
For the last year of the second decade of the 21st century, Nicola picked ten books we read in her three reading groups over the last 15 years. The books were by both men and women writers from the 5 continents. She hoped these books would inspire us to change how we see the world, and help us keep a sane and open mind in this pivotal year.
We read one every month from January to June and from September to December. In July and August, Nicola again picked 4 books for her Summer Reading Group. The ten books in our 2020 readathon were:
- January – “I Do Not Come to You by Chance” by Adaobi Tricia Nwaubani (Nigeria)
- February – “The White Tiger” by Aravind Adiga (India)
- March – “Eva Luna” by Isabel Allende (Chile)
- April – “Samarkand” by Amin Maalouf (Lebanon)
- May – “Irma Voth” by Miriam Toews (Canada)
- June – “The Bad Girl” by Mario Vargas Llosa (Peru)
July-August – Summer Reading Group
- September – “Living in the Maniototo” by Janet Frame (New Zealand)
- October – “Sleepwalking Land” by Mia Couto (Mozambique)
- November – “The Dream Life of Sukhanov” by Olga Grushin (Russia)
- December – “Fahrenheit 451” by Ray Bradbury (USA)
Nicola organised online meetings to discuss these books and joined readers in our Discussion Group on Facebook where they posted thoughts and comments on the books.