Welcome! I am Diana – originally from Russia, but now reside in the UK. I am a law graduate (LSE/UCL) with the passion for books, travel and different cultures exploration.

Mission Statement

This blog is for all those who are curious about the world of literature, but also want to explore fascinating aspects and mysteries as they relate to art, history, music, travel, different cultures, philosophy, psychology and anthropology (as well as other interesting disciplines).

  • Diversity of Interests (*KNOW & EXPLORE*)

I have interests which are very diverse and would like to share my enthusiasm for certain subjects through this blog, enabling people to KNOW more and EXPLORE broadly. I am insatiable for secrets and mysteries of all kinds, the deeper and more obscure – the better (the eerie, the unexplained, the fantastical, the mythical). I am interested in the human mind (studies on dreaming and consciousness, and history of mental health), and in psychology, and thus prefer reading stories with deep character studies. I am also a philosophy enthusiast (existentialism, “existential” literature, Buddhism), and dabble in such diverse fields as history, art, ballet, space science and cinema. Regarding the latter, I particularly like French classics, and films by such directors as Andrei Tarkovsky, David Lynch, Robert Bresson, Federico Fellini & Yasujirō Ozu. My other passions are music (everything from classical music (I am learning the piano)) to hard rock), yoga, anthropology, and mysticism (alchemy). One day I may be discussing allegories in art, another – talking about the intricacies of the Japanese culture, and yet another – sharing my enthusiasm for Peruvian mysteries.

  • A Multinational Outlook (*DISCOVER*)

Since I was born in Russia (native language), live in the UK, speak Spanish (my passion), French and a little bit of Italian (I consider France, Italy and Spain really my “spiritual homelands”), lived in Belgium and Italy, and am now studying Japanese, the aim of my blog is to promote world literature/translated fiction, but also to introduce aspects of world history, different culture and put spotlight on artists from all corners of the world. For example, my blog previously covered histories of Italy, France and Japan, and I also completed the Asia and Latin America Reading Challenges. My current passion is the works of Japanese authors in particular (Yasunari Kawabata, Kōbō Abe, Kenzaburo Oe, Osamu Dazai, Fumiko Enchi and Shusaku Endo). The key is to keep DISCOVER-ring.

  • A Passion for Literature (*THINK & FEEL*)

I believe reading is important, and it is essential to appreciate that literature is diverse and life-changing (I want everyone to read!). I was brought up to believe that a book is one of the most precious things in the world. I started reading at an early age in Russia, and my childhood was all about reading since my grandmother had an extensive library. As a child, I started with Alexander Pushkin’s fairly-tales, but was soon reading stories by Jules Verne, Alexandre Dumas, Victor Hugo, Arthur Conan Doyle, Agatha Christie, Robert Louis Stevenson, Jack London, Mark Twain, Mayne Reid, and later also the works of Ivan Turgenev, Anton Chekhov, Mikhail Lermontov, Brontë Sisters, Jane Austen and Miguel de Cervantes, to name just a few authors. I know read classics, contemporary literary fiction, philosophical (existentialist) fiction, historical fiction, science-fiction, thriller, detective stories, horror and non-fiction, and my favourite authors include Leo Tolstoy, Fyodor Dostoevsky, Charles Dickens, Henry James, Thomas Hardy, Honoré de Balzac, Edith Wharton, Franz Kafka, Albert Camus, Thomas Mann, Hermann Hesse and José Saramago. From contemporaries, I also appreciate Orhan Pamuk, Kazuo Ishiguro, Donna Tartt and Hanya Yanagihara (check out my review index). Thus, one of the aims of this blog is to promote and encourage reading widely and diversely, as well as THINK-ing critically and FEEL-ing deeply about what we read.