Bloggiesta: Book reviewing

Ronald Giphart signing books, holding autographed book up
The first Giphart book I bought, Phileine zegt Sorry, signed over 10 years later. It says 'For the most fun Spamantha I eeeeever met.' He said that at least he could say he was honest for this one 😛

Like I mentioned before I’d like to use this blog to also talk about books and review. I have never made a review in my life, except for little jots on goodreads and bookreviews for school of course. One of the mini-challenges is Five ways to spiff up your book reviews and another Five tips to write a book review faster. I’m combining these two. Now, quite honestly, I wanted to make this Dutch. I’m still not sure if I’ll review in Dutch or English later on, but because this is bloggiesta I want you guys to be able to read my ‘freewriting’ too.
For the first challenge I downloaded the ‘Star ratings for reviews’ to add some kawaii to the reviews, and of course I will use an awesome picture! Now, I just realised I might not be doing this on this blog alone, I might add recipe-book reviews etc to my other blogs! I might not do them here at all, or, whatever. What books do I still need to review? Let’s go to Goodreads! I’ve read the Dutch ‘IJsland’ (Iceland) by Ronald Giphart and left a tiny tiny review, same goes for Haruki Murakami’s スプートニクの恋人 (Spūtoniku no koibito) in English, Sputnik Sweetheart. The most I’ve read is Charlaine Harris’ Sookie Stackhouse series, and none of them have reviews, but I feel like I can do that later. Most of you’d know those (or refuse to read those maybe 😉 ) anyway. So I’m going for ‘IJsland’!

Ronald Giphart – IJsland
Cover IJsland, black bust silhouette of a nude pregnant woman, red background

Ronald Giphart has been my favorite author for years, mainly during my teens. He loves profanity, gives it straight up and mingles up words and sayings to make new ones. I love clever new words.
For quite some time I haven’t read Giphart, because I didn’t read for some time but also because there weren’t any new books. I followed him on twitter and at some point he announced he had a new website on which he would vlog about him writing his new book! I was intrigued! But after a while I stopped watching and forgot about the book. Until I was in the library a couple of weeks ago. Immediately I recognised the red cover with a big silhouette of a pregnant woman, about nearly due.
Without knowing what the story was about I brought it home and started reading immediately.
Turns out it’s a follow up to a book he wrote earlier (and was made into a movie). It talks about the main character Giph’s separation with the woman he had many loving adventures with and their issues of not being able to conceive. He was at a wedding of a friend (who was actually getting re-married, while Giph was still unmarried) when everyone went away to sail around on the lakes a bit. Not a fan of sailing, Giph tries to stay behind, but then notices a woman he noticed earlier during dinner showing the mating rituals of men. He now notices she was pregnant. That day Giph became a father. The rest of the book continues with him telling what happened the following months, with his kid, him going to Iceland with the comedy-group he’s the writer for whilst keeping in touch with home.
This book is again chuck full of word mash-ups and lots of little factoids: My kind of book. But the ‘previous’ books were more a ‘free’, ‘wild’ and ‘college-kid’ kind of books. This seems to have grown with Giph, no longer the student, but being a dad with serious responsibilities. It’s weird, but I like it. Not as much as Phileine says sorry (also made into a movie) and the book that lead to this one ‘Ik omhels je met duizend armen’ (A thousand kisses. Lit: I embrace you with a thousand arms).

Keeping my rating similar to that of Goodreads, I like, not love it.

[Rating:7 out of 10, would read again]

Buy on
(Unfortunately he doesn’t have books translated into English – though many other languages. I had the chance of talking to him November 29th, 2012 and he told me there was ONE book he wrote which he referred to as “50 bars in Amsterdam in 5 days”. I blurted out “That must be one heck of a hangover!”. He was starting to feel better. That would be Living, loving, longing: in 50 Amsterdam cafés, bars and pubs, published half a year prior 😛 . )

3 Responses

  1. Great review! It’s a brave new world, and I think you’ll do well. I haven’t heard of Ronald Giphart, but now I want to find him. (And I’m jealous of your ability to review in two languages!)

    • Aww thanks! Very nice to hear that from you! 😀 Some Giphart books are translated (and the movies available with subtitles) though this one is probably not yet translated. Be sure to tell me what you think if you ever read one of his books! Not sure if the wordknitting would be the same then, so I think I’ll read one translated if I can get my hands on it! Just to check ^_^
      (And yes, I’m very glad I can! English is sort of a second nature to me, I sometimes even think in English, my best friend’s mother was an (and our, at one point) English teacher, they spoke English at home and it often seemed like I moved in there ^_^; Hopefully my German will be well enough one day to do it in German too! And I am studying Japanese and have the most immense list of languages still to learn! Hopefully I’ll be a polyglot someday!)

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