The Abolition of Man by C. S. Lewis -- review
Aristocrats: Caroline, Emily, Louisa and Sarah Lennox, 1750-1832 by Stella Tillyard -- review
Around the World in Eighty Days by Jules Verne -- review
Artemis Fowl by Eoin Colfer -- review
Atonement by Ian McEwan -- review
Bella Tuscany: the Sweet Life in Italy by Frances Mayes -- review
A Bend in the River by V.S. Naipaul -- review
The Book That Changed My Life: 71 Remarkable Writers Celebrate the Books That Matter Most to Them by Roxanne Coady and Joy Johannessen -- review
Boswell's Presumptuous Task: The Making of the Life of Dr. Johnson by Adam Sisman -- review
The Caliph's House: A Year in Casablanca by Tahir Shah -- review
The Canon: A Whirligig Tour of the Beautiful Basics of Science by Natalie Angier -- review
Catch-22 by Joseph Heller -- review
Catholicism for Dummies by Rev. John Trigilio Jr. and Rev. Kenneth Brighenti -- review
Catholicism Today: A Survey of Catholic Belief and Practice by Matthew Kohmescher -- review
The Catholic Woman: Difficult Choices in a Modern World by Jeanne Pieper -- review
The Complete Maus by Art Spiegelman -- review
Cranford by Elizabeth Gaskell -- review
Creating a World Without Poverty: Social Business and the Future of Capitalism by Muhammad Yunus -- review
The Cubs and Other Stories by Mario Vargas Llosa -- review
Daughter of China: A True Story of Love and Betrayal by Meihong Xu and Larry Engelmann -- review
Don't Let's Go to the Dogs Tonight: An African Childhood by Alexandra Fuller -- review
Eat, Pray, Love: One Woman's Search for Everything Across Italy, India and Indonesia by Elizabeth Gilbert -- review
Eleanor of Aquitaine: A Biography by Marion Meade -- review
Ethan Frome by Edith Wharton -- review
Everyday Life in Imperial Japan by Charles J. Dunn -- review
Everything Is Illuminated by Jonathan Safran Foer -- review
The Fall of the House of Usher and other stories by Edgar Allen Poe -- review
A Fez of the Heart: Travels around Turkey in Search of a Hat by Jeremy Seal -- review
The Four Loves by C.S. Lewis
Frankenstein, or The Modern Prometheus by Mary Shelley -- review
Gestures: The Do's and Taboos of Body Language Around the World by Roger E. Axtell -- review
Gift and Mystery: On the Fiftieth Anniversary of My Priestly Ordination by Pope John Paul II -- review
A Good Man Is Hard to Find and Other Stories by Flannery O'Connor - review
The Great Divorce by C. S. Lewis -- review
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J.K. Rowling -- review
Holy Cow: An Indian Adventure by Sarah MacDonald -- review
Honeymoon in Purdah: An Iranian Journey by Alison Wearing -- review
The Hound of the Baskervilles by Arthur Conan Doyle -- review
Howards End by E. M. Forster -- review
Iran Awakening: A Memoir of Revolution and Hope by Shirin Ebadi -- review
Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte -- review
Josephine: A Life of the Empress by Carolly Erickson -- review
Julie and Julia by Julie Powell -- review
King Leopold's Ghost: A Story of Greed, Terror, and Heroism in Colonial Africa by Adam Hochschild -- review
The Little Prince (Le Petit Prince) by Antoine de Saint-Exupèry -- review
Madame de Pompadour by Nancy Mitford -- review
Mere Christianity by C. S. Lewis
Middlemarch by George Eliot -- review
Mister Pip by Lloyd Jones
Morality Play by Barry Unsworth -- review
The Murder of Roger Ackroyd by Agatha Christie -- review
Nana by Emile Zola -- review
The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency by Alexander McCall Smith -- review
No Greater Love by Mother Theresa -- review
Notes from a Small Island by Bill Bryson -- review
On Being Catholic by Thomas Howard -- review
Outline of English Architecture by A. H. Gardner -- review
Paris to the Moon by Adam Gopnik -- review
Plato and a Platypus Walk into a Bar...: Understanding Philosophy Through Jokes by Thomas Cathcart and Daniel Klein -- review
Princesses: The Six Daughters of George III by Flora Fraser -- review
The Problem of Pain by C. S. Lewis -- review
The Professor and the Madman: A Tale of Murder, Insanity, and the Making of the Oxford English Dictionary by Simon Winchester -- review
Queenan Country: A Reluctant Anglophile's Pilgrimage to the Mother Country by Joe Queenan -- review
The Rosary: A Journey to the Beloved by Gary Jansen -- review
Royal Charles: Charles II and the Restoration by Antonia Fraser -- review
The Screwtape Letters by C. S. Lewis -- review
Sense and Sensibility by Jane Austen -- review
The Sign of Four by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle -- review
The Spy Who Came in From the Cold by John le Carre -- review
A Study In Scarlet by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle -- review
Tender Is the Night by F. Scott Fitzgerald -- review
The Time Machine by H. G. Wells -- review
The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger -- review
Toujours Provence by Peter Mayle -- review
The Truth of Catholicism: Inside the Essential Teachings and Controversies of the Church Today by George Weigel -- review
The Uncommon Reader: A Novella by Alan Bennett -- review
Under the Banner of Heaven: A Story of Violent Faith by Jon Krakauer -- review
Ungrateful Daughters: The Stuart Princesses Who Stole Their Father's Crown by Maureen Waller -- review
What Makes Us Catholic: Eight Gifts for Life by Thomas Groome -- review
When You Are Engulfed in Flames by David Sedaris -- review
The World According to Garp by John Irving -- review
Saturday, December 4, 2010
The Abolition of Man by C. S. Lewis -- review
Friday, December 3, 2010
Tuesday, November 17, 2009
Dewey worded it this way, "find and review a link to a book podcast." I'm modifying this just a bit and am asking you to share with us a podcast you love, preferably book related, but not necessarily so. Give us the link, of course, and share with us details about that podcast and why you enjoy it so much. If you have a couple or three favorites, share them all!
Then, as the week goes on, check out every one's suggestions, find time to listen to a few, then come back and let us know what you discovered, and if you've found a new favorite podcast.
If you don't listen to podcasts at all, tell us why, or what it would take to peak your interest in them. Perhaps you could do as Dewey suggests, and do a little research (google book podcasts) and find one, then post on your blog what you discover and if you liked it or not.
Be sure to sign Mr. Linky both for the post on your favorite podcast, and the post on what new favorites you discover this week.
This subject is right up my alley. I use my iPod daily and subscribe to at least 50 different podcasts, many related to books in some way. There's no way I can pick only one favorite, but I'll limit myself to three recommendations.
First is the Guardian Books podcast, put out by the UK Guardian newspaper. It includes author interviews, book reviews, and various other book-related news and events. Part of the reason that I like it is that the participants are so honest with their opinions -- it's not unusual to hear them say things like, "This book/chapter/whatever is really quite terrible, isn't it?" in that British accent that we Yanks love. This honesty is so refreshing, especially in these days of often hypersensitivity and political correctness. Check out the Guardian's books multimedia page here or subscribe to the podcast in iTunes here.
A second great one is Slate's Audio Book Club. Each episode is 30-60 minutes and consists of three participants (usually editors, writers, or reviewers) discussing a book at length. The book may be modern bestseller, a classic or anything in between (although they seem to focus almost exclusively on fiction). I recently listened to them discuss Anna Karenina and was blown away by how much I got from the discussion. It's kind of like sitting in on group discussion with the best literature professors you've ever met. The participants can occasionally be a little snarky, but not enough to really affect your enjoyment. Check out the full list of Slate's podcasts (not limited to just the Audio Club, so you have to whittle it down) here or subscribe to the podcast in iTunes here.
My last recommendation is PRI's Selected Shorts. This is an hour-long podcast of short stories read by actors live at Symphony Space in NYC and at various locations throughout the US. There's a number of audiobook/story/poetry podcasts out there and this one is by far the best, in large part because the readers are professional actors and therefore know how to read a story aloud. Check out their website here, download it from the NPR site here or subscribe in iTunes here.
Sunday, November 15, 2009
I currently have accounts with both LibraryThing (for books I own) and Goodreads (for books I don't own but want to read), as well as PaperBackSwap (nickname: florida-fan) and BookMooch. I was looking around for a place that my son could trade some video games and signed up for Swaptree. This got me thinking about the books I've listed on PBS and Mooch that I haven't gotten any takers on. Maybe I could trade them on SwapTree? But to do this (and for my general well-being), I'd need to organize and update. So that's what I've started working on today. As an irritating aside to this, my computer has decided to run at snail speed, which makes this project oh so much more enjoyable.
My plan of attack is consists of several steps (some overlapping).
1. Search my LT account for books that can be disposed of. I currently own almost 900 books, but I tag them as read and unread, so maybe this won't take too long.
2. Classify books in my Goodreads account by genre and how much I want them.
3. Make sure I don't still have books listed somewhere that I no longer own.
4. Double-check whether my library has a book I want to read before putting/keeping it on a wishlist.
I don't know how long my enthusiasm for this project will last; I'm a great project-starter but not as good of a project-finisher. We'll see. At least it's something to do while my Farmville crops grow.
Thursday, November 12, 2009
Kristi of Books and Needlepoint is giving away three audiobook copies of What the Dog Saw by Macolm Gladwell. Contest open to U.S. and Canada through December 1.
J. Kaye of J. Kaye's Book Blog also has an audiobook copy of What the Dog Saw by Malcolm Gladwell. Contest open to U.S. and Canada through November 27.
Wednesday, November 11, 2009
Author: F. Scott Fitzgerald
First Published: 1933
No. of Pages: 349
Synopsis (from B&N): "Set in the South of France in the decade after World War I, Tender Is the Night is the story of a brilliant and magnetic psychiatrist named Dick Diver; the bewitching, wealthy, and dangerously unstable mental patient, Nicole, who becomes his wife; and the beautiful, harrowing ten-year pas de deux they act out along the border between sanity and madness.
In Tender Is the Night, Fitzgerald deliberately set out to write the most ambitious and far-reaching novel of his career, experimenting radically with narrative conventions of chronology and point of view and drawing on early breakthroughs in psychiatry to enrich his account of the makeup and breakdown of character and culture.
Tender Is the Night is also the most intensely, even painfully, autobiographical of Fitzgerald's novels; it smolders with a dark, bitter vitality because it is so utterly true. This account of a caring man who disintegrates under the twin strains of his wife's derangement and a lifestyle that gnaws away at his sense of moral values offers an authorial cri de coeur, while Dick Diver's downward spiral into alcoholic dissolution is an eerie portent of Fitzgerald's own fate."
Fiction or Nonfiction: Fiction
Comments and Critique: I definitely agree with the statement in the synopsis that this was one of Fitzgerald's most ambitious and autobiographical novels. Whenever I read a novel by an author I've read before, I can't help but compare the works, and I found myself continually comparing this one to The Great Gatsby, Fitzgerald's most famous work. I didn't love this novel as much as Gatsby, but in some ways it was a better work. You feel the characters' emotions more closely, so that some parts almost hurt you to read. The author gets more into the core of his characters here than he did in other works. Gatsby is a cleaner, more precisely written novel, but this one strikes closer to the bone.
The autobiographical nature of the book also jumps out at you throughout. I've heard that authors are constantly asked how much of themselves they put into their books and often the readers see more than is really there, but in this case you just know that it's not all fiction. I'm very curious to read more about Fitzgerald's life now and to see what critics have said about this book over the years.
I highly recommend this excellent book.
Challenges: 999 ("1001 Books"); (Another) 1% Well-Read; Guardian 1000 Novels ("Love"); Modern Library 100 Best Novels (#28 Board, #62 Radcliffe); Well-Rounded; What's in a Name? 2
Around the World in 80 Days by Jules Verne -- completed 3/21/09; review
Cranford by Elizabeth Gaskell -- completed 6/7/09; review
Frankenstein, or The Modern Prometheus by Mary Shelley -- completed 9/1/09; review
The Hound of the Baskervilles by Arthur Conan Doyle -- completed 3/15/09; review
Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte -- completed 4/29/09; review
The Murder of Roger Ackroyd by Agatha Christie -- completed 4/18/09; review
Nana by Emile Zola -- completed 10/11/09; review
Sense and Sensibility by Jane Austen -- completed 7/21/09; review
Tender Is the Night by F. Scott Fitzgerald -- completed 11/8/2009; review
The Time Machine by H. G. Wells -- completed 4/21/09; review
Profession: The Professor and the Madman: A Tale of Murder, Insanity, and the Making of the Oxford English Dictionary by Simon Winchester -- completed 3/9/09; review
Time of day: Tender Is the Night by F. Scott Fitzgerald -- completed 11/8/09; review
Relative: Queenan Country: A Reluctant Anglophile's Pilgrimage to the Mother Country by Joe Queenan -- completed 1/21/09; review
Body part: A Fez of the Heart: Travels around Turkey in Search of a Hat by Jeremy Seal -- completed 8/7/09; review
Building: The Fall of the House of Usher and Other Writings: Poems, Tales, Essays, and Reviews by Edgar Allen Poe -- completed 1/24/09; review
Medical condition: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J.K. Rowling -- completed 7/24/09; review