Books From My Closet

"I Love Books The Way Some Girls Love Shoes"

Archive for the category “Book Talk”

Choosing the Right Book…

Hello Dear Followers,

Last night I was reading some of the final pages of “Wild” by Cheryl Strayed, (not finished it yet..almost done!) and I began to think about my next book choice.  For months I had one book in mind, was so sure about it.  Until last night.

What made last night stand out? Nothing really. But I think my needs changed. And right now, I am looking for an escape.  And this book may not be it. No biggie.  A few days ago, two friends recommended two different self-help books, while I have both on my to-read list, I think I need a fictional novel.

Let me dive into someone else’s life while I try to figure out my own.  Have you ever felt this way before? Not knowing which book to choose?  Here are some things to think about:

  • Pick a book based on what you are feeling. Intuitive reading I like to call it. What does your heart and mind need at this moment? Does it need some help? And are you willing to listen? Choose a self-help book. Are you in love? Choose a good love story.  Let your feelings decide.
  • Are we going with classics, older contemporaries or the latest book trend?  Several people in the past have said to keep your blog engaging, you should be reading what is popular, I don’t know that I completely agree with that.  I think people appreciate books they haven’t heard about in a while, or books they have never heard of at all.  For example, right now I am sure everyone is reading a few of the following: “Big Little Lies”  or “Handmaid’s Tale” or they are re-reading “Fifty Shades Freed”.  Why not stay away from what is popular for a bit, return to these books when the popularity has dimmed a bit.
  • What genres are your favorite?  Do you tend to go back to old standbys or are you willing to branch out and try something new?
  • What you loved before, you may not love now.  I have a ton of books on my shelf that has me questioning, “What was I thinking when I bought this?” Which is sad, because my books are my treasures.
  • Reading is for enjoyment, so it’s important to choose a book you will actually enjoy and want to recommend to someone else.

Until next time…


The Next 50 Pages of Big Magic

Hello Dear Followers,

As I read the next 50 pages of “Big Magic” by Elizabeth Gilbert, so many thoughts came to my mind.  This book,  is very much like a tutorial on living a creative life and has been at times all over the place with thoughts and ideas that it was often hard to keep up.

Here are some main points that caught my eye that I think are worth sharing:

Read more…

The First 50 Pages of Big Magic

Hello Dear Followers,

Today is a good day!  Author Elizabeth Gilbert’s new book “Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear” has arrived and it is simply wonderful!

Of course, I had to have it today, I couldn’t wait one more day for it, so after work I ran to Barnes & Noble and grabbed my copy.  Let me let you in on a little secret, Amazon has one coming to me on Sept. 29, but I couldn’t wait that long and what is wrong with having two books?

I didn’t want to wait to read it either, while I am in the middle of many other books at the moment,  I simply had to start reading and devouring Liz’s book.  And so far it is excellent.  Big Magic

It is an easy read filled with anecdotal stories and inspiration.  And I swear I can hear her as I am reading this book, I hear her humor and wit.

For those of you that haven’t started reading it yet, (because you aren’t crazy like me who ran through a mall parking lot quickly grabbed the book and ran back to her car before the meter maid could ticket her), I won’t give too much away.

But here are some things you should know from the first 50 pages of the book:

  • Embrace your fears about creativity, understand that they will join you on your journey, but never under no circumstances let them direct your path.
  • Be brave and have “stubborn gladness” in your pursuit for creative living.
  • We all have “buried treasures” within us that are just waiting to be discovered if we want to.
  • Fear is boring. It only has one single message. (I won’t tell you what that message is – read the book and find out!)

So far ( as most of her fans figured) Liz shines and she is a true hero to us all.  I strongly encourage you to pick up “Big Magic” tomorrow and get started on reading it.

Until next time!

My Journey to Self-Love

Hello Dear Followers,

I know I have slacked big time on keeping up with this blog, and I always promise to get back here and read a book a month, but time is just not with me these days. I am involved in so many things that taking even 45 minutes to read is a huge feat.  So of course I’ve decided to write a book.

Because you know, we all have the time to do that?  Mine is a non-fiction book on self-love.  I am writing it because at 32-years old, I realized it’s time to love myself.  While I am no where near the end of my journey, very much at the beginning with some challenges still ahead,  I am keeping notes of thoughts, experiences, what I hear – anything and everything I’ve doing that is a devotion to self-love.

I don’t expect to write and publish anything that is drastically different that what is probably already out there, but I am not worrying about that, this is my journey and what is already out there does not matter to me. I am on a path where I want to not only help myself, but help others as well. I don’t think of myself as the best writer nor am I the worst, but if even one single thought on this subject can help another person’s life, I am willing to try.

Also, this book won’t be ready anytime soon, I am in the research phase, I am in the phase of listening and experiencing and talking to people about it.  It could be a few years before this book sees the light of day, if at all.

For a few years now I have struggled on a topic for a book, I had originally wanted to write a fiction novel, but that didn’t feel right, not yet anyway.  This topic, feels right and I am excited about it. So I must continue on this journey, right?

I don’t force anything with what I am writing, if a thought comes to me that I want to be part of the book, it gets written down.  It is really a book of the senses at the moment, I don’t have a formula or a real outline like most authors do.

I have a rough idea of how I want this book to look and feel and be, but all of it is still in very preliminary.

Several people have told me I should be a teacher and that I should or am destined to write a book, and I feel like this is my chance.  So I am moving ahead and doing it.

The reason I am writing this post and revealing to you what I am writing is because I need your help.  I want to hear about what you think self-love is? How would you describe it? What are some of the challenges you face with it? What have been some of the rewards from the practice?  What have you learned most about self-love that you didn’t know before?  I want to hear it all.

Please feel free to comment below and share your thoughts with me.  Thank you!


The Book Barn!

Hello Dear Followers,

I know it is has been a tremendously long time since I last wrote. I will admit life definitely gets in the way of reading and writing for pleasure.  Today I went to wonderful new place called the Book Barn. I am sharing this because it was truly a wonderful experience.

The shop is located in Niantic, CT and is a used bookstore. But this isn’t just any used bookstore, it is four shops under the same name right by the ocean. I instantly fell in love!  IMG_5629

It was a treasure trove that you must definitely spend some significant time in, I suggest an entire day if you can.  I started my day at the Book Barn’s downtown shop for a few minutes, before I ventured off down the street to the Main Barn.

I spent several hours in the Main Barn, just quietly looking at every possible book I could, I didn’t want to miss a thing!  My friend who was with me today had been speaking about this place for years and I had never gone with her until today. I can now understand what the fuss was about.

This is definitely a bibliophile’s dream!  If you are like me, who doesn’t enjoy reading digitally, but has a strong marriage with the smell and feel of new and old books,  I strongly recommend doing this for yourself!

Lately, in the midst of all that is going on in my life, I have been trying to take a lot of time doing stuff I enjoy and make me happy.  I feel it is very important for your heart and soul.

After I spent a significant amount of time at the Main Barn, I went up the road to Store 4 3/4, a small shop that is really an extension of the Main Barn.  Not finding much there, I went back downtown to the Midtown Shop before coming back up again to the Main Barn and making sure I hadn’t missed anything.

The rest of the day spent eating good food and finishing up exploring the rest of the shops!  I will definitely be back! I also encourage if you are spending any time in Connecticut, that you stop by this quaint beach town and the the Book Barn!

Until next time!

Elizabeth Gilbert: A True 19th Century Writer!

Hello Dear Followers,

I finally finished “The Signature Of All Things” by Elizabeth Gilbert and words can’t describe how much I enjoyed this book! I have not read a book that carries the reader from birth (or pre-birth) to death like Liz does.  What I loved about reading this book, is that it even though it is a big book (500 pages) it reads so easily and surprises you when you least expect it.

When you’re reading Liz’s book, you can’t help but feel as if you are reading a 19th century writer, she got the voice of her characters perfectly and brings you into the story to a point where you find yourself thinking about it for hours after you’ve stopped reading.

For those that don’t know anything about this book, it tells the story of Alma Whittaker, a 19th century botanist that comes into her own in the world of plants and evolution.  I really connected to this character, and I have to admit at first I didn’t think this would be possible, given all the mention of science.  But it reads so easily that you won’t be able to put it down.

Liz definitely did her homework when it came to the research for this book, I can only imagine what went into learning all there was to learn about mosses and botany as a whole.

I will say that throughout reading the book, there was such a sad undertone, so many of the characters, especially Alma had made so many sacrifices in their lives and lost so much.  You will have to read it to understand more about what I am talking about here.

This book is definitely worth a re-read and it is definitely a book that belongs alongside books like “Pride and Prejudice,” “Jane Erye” and “Wuthering Heights.”  Liz is the master of the written word and deserves a major applause for this book!  I can’t wait to see what she will be writing next!

Until next time!

Books From My Bedroom…

Hello Dear Followers,

When I began this blog a few years ago, my books were in my closet, (hence the name).  Recently, or three months rather, I moved out of my home with my parents and went out on my own, bringing all of my un-read books with me.  After three months, I finally found a bookshelf and my books are on display.

They aren’t in my closet anymore collecting dust begging to be read, but front and center in my new bedroom.  As I was putting my books on the shelf yesterday, I began to wonder what would people think of my book choices that sit here?

I love history so there are books about Abraham Lincoln and other biographies of major influential people in my collection, I love Nicholas Sparks novels so there is some of that in there too.  I have the classics like “Charles Dickens” and “Jane Eyre” and “The Grapes of Wrath,”  these were books I had always wanted to read, but never did until now.

I have books that are trending at the moment, like Elizabeth Gilbert’s “The Signature of all Things.” Last night before I went to bed I counted how many books I actually that are un-read and including the ones on my iPad, I have 162 un-read books.

You can say I have a bit of an obsession, but lately I have to admit I have neglected this blog and the purpose of it.  The other day I met Elizabeth Gilbert again  and when I come across other authors that I favor (Louisa May Alcott, Laura Ingalls Wilder, Mitch Albom etc…)  I felt the thirst to return to my creative side.  The side the writes her thoughts down, the side that reads regularly.

I can’t make any promises because I have broken so many with this blog, gosh, I hope I still have followers!  Oh! and I am not changing the name of this blog because my location changed… 🙂

I thought I would share this before I go to sleep tonight!  Thanks so much!



My Elizabeth Gilbert Experience

Hello Dear Followers,


Me, Elizabeth Gilbert and my friend Jaimie

It has been a while, and sadly I have not gotten any farther than I was when I last wrote to all of you.  Still trying to get through “American Wife” by Curtis Sittenfeld and “Quiet” by Susan Cain.  I am itching to finish both!

I couldn’t resist sharing with all of you about my Elizabeth Gilbert experience this weekend.  In case you have been living under a rock and don’t know who she is, she is the author of “Eat, Pray, Love.”  It was a memoir she wrote in 2006 about her spiritual year-long journey to Italy, India and Indonesia.

When I read that book and the book that followed – “Committed,”  I continued to be inspired by her spirituality, her strength and bravery.

I was so lucky this past weekend to meet her at Sacred Heart University in Fairfield,  Conn.,  where  she spoke about her newest book “The Signature of All Things”  which tells the story Alma Whittaker, a botanist born in 1800 and of the Whittakers, a family of botanical explorers, during the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries.

I will admit I have not read the book yet, just got it a few weeks ago, but I am excited to begin once I finish my other books.

I found Liz  to be just fabulous.  She was funny and witty, during her talk she made some of the best of analogies that explained life perfectly – both hers and others.  My friend Jaimie and I jokingly decided we had girl crushes on this author.  Liz spoke to everyone who asked her a question like she knew them forever, they weren’t just audience members, but friends.

What I loved about that was it made asking my question about wanting to write a book so much easier and she is the second author that has seriously made me think about beginning writing for myself again regularly – (I may even carry a journal with me wherever I go.)

She told the mainly-women filled audience a lot of things about herself and life that I found very helpful.  She said anything that you fight will fight you back.  There isn’t anything more attractive than someone whose feet doesn’t fully touch the ground.  She said women have a tremendous capacity to be resilient in the face of a ruin.

I really just simply enjoyed hearing this woman who has traveled the world and found herself in the most spiritual of places is truly something to strive for.  When I asked her about what it took to begin writing a book, she first asked me which direction I wanted to go towards fiction or non-fiction. I knew immediately I want to write a non-fiction novel, about what part of my life, I am not sure.

She further answered mine and my friend’s question the next day on her Facebook page by asking the question “What are you willing to give up, in order to have what you really want?”


Me and Elizabeth Gilbert

What I loved most even days before is that this prolific author will answer you on her Facebook page, I mean I don’t know any author/celebrity person who takes the time to answer their followers.  It just made her reachable and real and I just loved that.

This blog post definitely doesn’t do the talk full justice, but I personally just want to thank Liz for a delightful evening filled with so many enlightened teachings.

The State of the Bookstore

Hello Dear Followers,


My books from tonight’s visit to the bookstore!

Tonight I got a rare opportunity to do something I haven’t done in a while, walk through the bookstore looking at all the wonderful books both new and familiar.  I had the notepad on my iphone handy ready to add to the “Books I Want”  list.  So what did I see?  A lot of bargains, for Father’s Day, but also general bargains.  I saw the bookstore added new sections geared toward teen paranormal books which I am going to assume began with the advent of “Twilight Saga” by Stephanie Meyer.  Sadly, I found the fiction and literature section minimized, and more toys and games sections have broadened.  This disappointed me tremendously, because it showed the drastic change in state of the bookstore as many find books electronically or not at all.  What happened with an honest to goodness book?

While I am not old, by no means (just turned 30 in January)  I come from a time when physical books were still treasured.  I have yet to embrace the e-readers out there, I love the smell and feel of a book. I fear the future generations won’t have that pleasure, nor will they have the pleasure I had of walking through a bookstore basking the fresh smell of books and sitting in comfy couches embarking on the journey the book has to offer.

Until next time…

My Plans for 2012


Hello Dear Followers,

I have a lot of plans for this blog in 2012. I am totally excited about this.  I plan to be more dedicated at posting. Starting Sunday, I will post on a weekly basis.

I hope you will share your thoughts with me as well. They are always welcome! I plan to include more guest bloggers, and I already have a few lined up and  I am always looking for more! So please send me your thoughts about what you are reading! They may be sent to  Or find me on Facebook at – Books From My Closet and on Twitter at @BooksFrMyCloset.

I’d also love some new ideas about what I can do for this blog, I want it to be so much more than it was the first year. So please your suggestions are welcome! Thanks so much for your commitment to following my posts and I look forward to  speaking to you!

Until next time…

– Daniela

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