About

About this [blank] garden

This is my blank space. A white page, as good as a garden covered in snow, not yet cultivated, but with some strong Spring hidden within; something simple, clean, yet to be stained; a seed with some flower all curled up inside, first waiting, then slowly unraveling.

This is my reading journal, my garden, my commonplace book. It started here.

About my scarlet letters

My reading life is a conversation made in silence with writers I most probably will never meet. I see the books I read (and the reviews I write about them) as an intimate letter exchange.  You are invited to open these letters I send to the void. Cor ad cor loquitur.

About me

meMy bliss is scarlet and all my books are read. Of all things, I prefer the used ones. I am not interested in people who have no doubts in life. I am a common reader who lives in Germany with a husband and a messy bookcase. I am also a left-wing liberal, Buddhist wannabe, and bad feminist, with a strong tendency towards the (Groucho-)Marxism. I write poems. I translate other people’s poems. And I read books.

About my review policy

I prefer to read at my own whim, so I do not actively seek books for review. I am a passionate reader, not a professional reviewer. I try to read as widely as I can, not only out of curiosity, but mostly out of fear that I might be missing something really good. My reviews are mostly efforts of affection: I attempt to put books in perspective, find their particular resonance in me, or alert people to writers (particularly women) they may have overlooked. Writing about books is my personal way of learning how to read them.

If you are a publisher, literary agent or author, please read my review policy, before contacting me.  After reading my guidelines, if you feel that I might enjoy your book, please send me a press release.  I’ll take a look and let you know if I’m interested.

Please bear in mind that I do not review self-published work. And I subscribe to “The Reader’s Bill of Rights”:

 

“The Reader’s Bill of Rights
1. The right to not read
2. The right to skip pages
3. The right to not finish
4. The right to reread
5. The right to read anything
6. The right to escapism
7. The right to read anywhere
8. The right to browse
9. The right to read out loud
10. The right to not defend your tastes”

— Daniel Pennac, Better Than Life

P.S.

English is not my mother tongue: do not be surprised with some of my strange sounding sentences and awkward mistakes. 😉

Thank you for your visit! 🙂

Joan Linder. "Black Weed". 2010.
Joan Linder. “Black Weed”. 2010.

20 Comments Add yours

  1. Bellezza says:

    Juliana, thanks for visiting Dolce Bellezza again today. It’s nice to be here, surrounded in your prose which reads like poetry and the beautiful art. Am I confused about My Carved Words being another blog of yours? I will mark down this if this is your primary blog. xo

    Like

    1. juliana says:

      Thank you for your visit, Bellezza! Yes, My Carved Words was my previous blog :). I was overwhelmed with too much reading projects and books to review, and just needed a change of scenery, I guess. 🙂 xo

      Like

  2. Bellezza says:

    Okay, I’ll change my feed to this one. I think you write a beautiful blog.

    Like

    1. juliana says:

      Thank you, Bellezza! X)

      Like

  3. Renate Molz says:

    Sehr schön, dein Blog, Juliana! Ich werde ihn mir noch genauer anschauen, deine Buchbeschreibungen und Rezensionen lesen.

    Like

    1. juliana says:

      Danke, Renate! Saudades 🙂

      Like

  4. Liz Dexter says:

    Oh, you’re a Virago and Persephone reader and a translator – I’m an editor and I expect we have a large overlap in reading material. I’m going to enjoy following your blog!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. juliana says:

      Thank you, Liz! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  5. ms. arachne says:

    Your blog is lovely. The illustrations are fantastic. I especially enjoy the way you frame your reviews as letters to the writers. Our Classics Club reading lists have many titles in common. I look forward to reading your blog.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. juliana says:

      Thank you, Arachne! I also found your blog today, through the Classics Club. Your list is incredible! If you like, we could do a readalong/ buddy read for one of the books we have in common 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  6. ms. arachne says:

    Thanks, Juliana! Yes, I think a readalong/buddy read is a great idea. 🙂 Which book would you like to try?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. juliana says:

      I see we have Cold Comfort Farm and Selected Works Sor Juana Ines de La Cruz in common. Both will be great for me, but I’m especially curious about the Selected Works. Do you have other books in mind?

      Like

  7. ms. arachne says:

    Both of those sound great. We could start with Sor Juana’s Selected Works and see how it goes. I’ve wanted to read her works for a long time.

    I’ve seen the movie of Cold Comfort Farm and think the novel would be fun, too.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. juliana says:

      Great! Let’s read Sor Juana first then. Should we set a deadline or a schedule?

      Liked by 1 person

  8. ms. arachne says:

    That sounds like a good idea. I just finished Classical Women Poets, so I can start whenever you’re ready. I’ve never really done a buddy read before. How would you like to schedule the readings?

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    1. juliana says:

      We could set the deadline for one month from now – I would say May, 31th for reading & reviewing. What do you think? 🙂 Btw, I wasn’t aware there was a Classical Women Poets event going on! Is it too late to join in?

      Like

  9. ms. arachne says:

    May 31 sounds good. Thank you for inviting me to read Sor Juana’s works with you. It will be fun to have someone to share it with. 🙂

    Oh, sorry, I wasn’t clear. It’s a book, not an event. “Classical Women Poets” edited and translated by Josephine Balmer is a small anthology of poems and fragments by Greek and Roman women poets ca. 620 BCE – ca. 420 A.D. It’s on my list for WCLE. I’m working on my post for it now.

    Like

    1. juliana says:

      Thank you for accepting the invitation! The reason why I love blogging is this opportunity it gives us to share books and readings :). I’ll add “Classical Women Poets” to my TBR. I’m looking forward to reading your review of it then! 🙂

      Like

  10. Lisa Hill says:

    Hello, I discovered this intriguing blog via your link to my Christina Stead Week at ANZ LitLovers. I really like the concept of your ‘blank space’ and I look forward to following your reading:)

    Liked by 1 person

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