On my birthday in February, I decided to join the Birth Year Reading Challenge, which is hosted by Hotchpot Cafe. It sounded like a fun challenge. Basically, you read some books (however many you want) that ware first published in the year you were born. For me, that was 1972.
I decided to read four books:
1. Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator by Roald Dahl Review
2. Jonathan Livingston Seagull by Richard Bach Review
3. My Name is Asher Lev by Chaim Potok Review
4. The Stepford Wives by Ira Levin Review
These are four very different books, yet I found it interesting that they all shared a similar theme. Perhaps it's a sign of the times. You see, each of these books was about being true to yourself and thinking for yourself, even if it means going against traditions and societal rules.
In Charlie and the Glass Elevator, Willie Wonka does his own thing, taking Charlie and his family soaring into space and doing whatever he wants to do, simply because it's fun. Jonathan Livingston Seagull is a bird who takes off from the flock, and follows his desire to fly as enjoyment, not just to get food. He relishes in his flights and attains a sort of divine contentment once he lets go and follows his heart.
In Asher Lev is another character who does his own thing. A child of a conservative Jewish family, Asher wants to be an artist and makes the choice to abandon his traditions to fulfill his dream. And finally, in The Stepford Wives, the new women in town are determined to keep their independence despite the fact that the rest of the women are devoted only to house and husband.
I guess the year I was born was a year for independent thinking and rebellion against societal norms and traditions! I had fun with this challenge and thanks so much to Hotchpot Cafe for hosting!