The Plot Against America, by Philip Roth. It's an alternate history novel in which Charles Lindbergh defeats FDR in the 1940 presidential election. Upon taking office, Lindbergh negotiates an "understanding" with Hitler, and America becomes a hotbed of anti-Semitism. I'm about 100 pages into it, and it's a really compelling read.
Blue Raja. Skyroniter. Me. We're from the government. We're here to riff.
Post by losingmydignity on Jan 20, 2006 1:12:55 GMT -5
The Feast of Love by Charles Baxter
The Year of Magical Thinking by Joan Didion
Austerlitz by W G Sebald (I'm reading this one stretched out over a year to make it last)
You like Sebald, I take it? I read Luftkrieg und Literatur and it just annoyed me. A couple friends really love him, so I keep meaning to pick up something like Austerlitz to see if it was only an isolated reaction...
Sounds like you read a book of his essays....yeah, I wouldn't go by that. His novels are quite different and extraordinary.
I'm doing some light reading, mystery novels and one about John Lennon.
You ever put a book aisde? The new Michael McGarrity mystery is reeeeeal dry. I've liked his other novels but this one is not very interesting in the least to me. I'm tempted to give up on it and finish up Ford's Corso series.
Yeah nuthin deep here. But I'm old, tired and hungering for brain candy these days.
Post by Gypsy Attle on Jan 24, 2006 22:56:52 GMT -5
Mozart by Maynard Solomon
Tell me what you think when you're finished. I read that one awhile back. I remember enjoying it, but I don't remember why.
I love it, it's very detailed. I really like how it sort of alternates between what he was doing at a given point in his life and an analysis of the music he wrote during that same period. Gives me a different perspective when hearing the pieces.
Post by Donna SadCat Lady on Jan 28, 2006 0:32:17 GMT -5
My name is Donna and I am a chronic reader.
Went to the library a week ago and got out a bunch of books. Finished reading and enjoyed:
Heavy words lightly thrown : the reason behind the rhyme by Chris Roberts - explanations behind the best known nursery rhymes. Not a scholarly work by any means; a fun read if taken with plenty of salt. (Tequila and lime optional, but recommended.)
Master pieces : the curator's game by Thomas Hoving - based on a challenge the author had with other art museum curators at their weekly staff meetings: can you identify famous paintings if shown only a small detail? Those curators sure get up to some wacky hijinks.
A gladiator dies only once : the further investigations of Gordianus the Finder by Steven Saylor - short stories about the continuing saga of an ancient Roman detective. Not one of my favorite authors, but enjoyable in small doses.
Zounds! : a browser's dictionary of interjections by Mark Dunn - as a lover of books about word history, all I can say is Huzzah!
Mommy knows worst : highlights from the golden age of bad parenting advice by James Lileks - any Internet addict is familiar with Lileks' sites memorializing and mocking the wretched excesses of early to mid-20th century pop culture. This one just made me uncomfortable, though.
Fooled you! : fakes and hoaxes through the years by Elaine Pascoe - a book for kids ages 8 through 12, that does a nice job of explaining major hoaxes of the past and present (from the Cardiff Giant to Piltdown Man to crop circles) while providing some historical and cultural background to help kids understand why so many people were fooled. (For adults I highly recommend The Museum of Hoaxes.)
Miniature rooms : the Thorne rooms at the Art Institute of Chicago - we loved this exhibit last time we were there; the pictures allow you to soak in the astounding detail. Text a bit dry and condescending at times.
The official Razzie movie guide : enjoying the best of Hollywood's worst by John Wilson - no explanation needed for this one. MST3K is mentioned in passing a few times.
The physics of superheroes by James Kakalios - the author tries, he really does, to make elementary physics accessible; and dang if he's not a comic book geek as well as a physics prof. But after a time my brain just shut down.
The unfolding of language : an evolutionary tour of mankind's greatest invention by Guy Deutscher - not really intended for the casual reader. I don't want to read a chapter about why this expert is wrong and why that expert is so much better; I want to get to the meaty stuff--you know, about language.
Devotion & splendor : medieval art at the Art Institute of Chicago - not enough pretty pictures, and the text drones on and on and on until it foams at the mouth and fall backwards.
Now I'm all out of stuff to read again. I need help.
I don't read THAT quickly, but I have friends who do...I am, however, another "chain" reader. You know, like...if you run out of stuff to read and don't have another book lined up or within easy reach, you start to panic a little bit? Like that. Heh.
Do I use this addiction of mine to read deep, broadening, educational works that will open my eyes, teach me things and make me a better person?
NO! Of course not. I use my love for reading to _entertain_ myself. Doy. Sometimes I learn stuff and run into interesting philosophical concepts along the way, but my main goal is to have fun. :P
"…a vital ingredient of success is not knowing that what you’re attempting can’t be done. A person ignorant of the possibility of failure can be a halfbrick in the path of the bicycle of history.”