“And once the storm is over you won’t remember how you made it through, how you managed to survive. You won’t even be sure, in fact, whether the storm is really over. But one thing is certain. When you come out of the storm you won’t be the same person who walked in. That’s what this storm’s all about.” — Haruki Murakami, Kafka on the Shore (via bookmania)
The Basic Binding of Books, a Tutorial by Jamie Butler.
Follow the rest of it here.
ONE STEP CLOSER TO BUILDING A TARDIS
I CAN READ MANGA WITH OUT WAITING FOR TRANSLATION
O.O imagine all the foreign research papers people could read. homygod
And then the heavens opened and angels began to sing…
Fairy Tale Challenge | Day Ten → One Fairy Tale Origin
The Little Mermaid – Hans Christian Andersen
“‘I carried him over the sea to the wood where the temple stands: I sat beneath the foam, and watched till the human beings came to help him. I saw the pretty maiden that he loves better than he loves me;’ and the mermaid sighed deeply, but she could not shed tears.” [x]
I guess we could say this isn’t precisely an accurate origin since it’s a very well founded theory but a theory nonetheless, still it makes sense to me and I decided to choose it. Most of you may know this already but Rictor Norton, in his book My Dear Boy, introduces some of Hans Christian Andersen’s letters (quoted from Hans Christian Andersen’s Correspondence) and, among them, he includes those directed to Edvard Collin, who coincidentally got married when this story was written, and states that The Little Mermaid was written as a love letter for him. In those letters, Andersen wrote “my sentiments for you are those of a woman. The femininity of my nature and our friendship must remain a mystery.” while Collins wrote in his own memoir “I found myself unable to respond to this love, and this caused the author much suffering." This unrequited love is believed to be the inspiration for The Little Mermaid and I think it’s very likely but, even if it wasn’t this particular one, knowing Andersen’s failed relationships, it’s not hard to see that the man knew what unrequited love felt like.
Still, even if this story is about one-sided love and ends being as impossible as it was in the beginning (the difference between their species and the preference for a human female by the prince representing the situation generated by Collin’s marriage), the female protagonist dies but she finds a new life and a transformation in the end, moving on despite the heartbreak. Maria Tatar states that the mermaid didn’t give everything up for love and that “the tale presents a rare heroine with investigative curiosity because she is fascinated by the unknown, the forbidden, and is intent on broadening her horizons from the beginning”. I think that is pretty interesting as an unrequited love story, since there is a transformation through the heartbreak, a learning process and another stage in the mermaid’s life that starts where the other ended. Death isn’t really a final state but the beginning of a new life. Marina Warner criticizes the tale saying "cutting out your tongue is still not enough. To be saved, more is required: self-obliteration, dissolution" yet Andersen himself said the choice was meant to make the act more personal than that of the Undine story: "I have not, like de la Motte Fouquet in Undine, let the mermaid’s gaining an immortal soul depend on a stranger, on the love of another person.”
It is important to clarify that maybe this is one of those Andersen’s stories with a very clear message in its ending, but it’s also true that the author had a serious personal connection to the tale. Heidi Anne Heiner said “Andersen claimed that The Little Mermaid was the only one of this fairy tales which moved him as he wrote it.”
There are other interesting versions like Judith Viorst’s poem, where she criticizes the mermaid’s desire to change for a man who wouldn’t accept her as she was, but Tatar argues that the mermaid’s interest in the human world was previous to meeting the prince. Whatever the case, the origin of this story as an unrequited love and the search for another stage, the transformation and learning from the heartbreak, is very interesting.
Medieval book clasps, without their books.
From the collections of Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen, Netherlands.
Time Travelling: Why We Broke Up by Daniel Handler
Why We Broke Up
Author: Daniel Handler
I’m telling you why we broke up, Ed. I’m writing it in this letter, the whole truth of why it happened.
In this novel, Handler, also known as Lemony Snicket, a legend for writing children’s books, tells a story that is expected from…
The Twilight Zone episode 08, “Time Enough At Last”
The cover illustration for Stephen King’s new Dark Tower novel The Wind Through the Keyhole. I like to think that in the design meeting it came down to this and a shadowed woman’s profile or something. Fortunately Scribner uses the What Would William Blake Do? rubric for their book jackets.
“He wondered if she found a peaceful pleasure in her exile: it would be nice, sometimes, to know that no one expected anything from you, no words, no thoughts, no cheerful greeting or enthusiasm.” — Stripes of the Sidestep Wolf by Sonya Hartnett (via summerreadinglist88)
“Books are interesting, aren’t they. If it is about a story, they can make you laugh, or cry, and there are books where you can learn from, and books of different specializations as well. A library which has all these different kinds of books is interesting. There was a period of time where I was really into libraries. It was a place where you would never get tired of just by being inside it.” - Matsumoto Jun
“Read more books than blogs.”