October 1, 2012
Hello world. I know it has been a long time since I have posted anything. As I have won some ARCs on Goodreads I realize that I must start reviewing books. I am currently reading The Black Count by Tom Reiss. I also received The Fiddler on Pantico Run by Joe Mazingo and Flying Change by Patrick Smithwick. As the book group that I belong to meets tomorrow I am unsure of what I will read next. Mazingo’s book would be my natural next choice as it came into my home last, but book group always trumps what is on my shelves as that is read for discussion. I am hoping to get a lot of reading done this week, but life can get in the way. That’s my books this week.
Hey, it’s me again. I read another book this past week. This book I really enjoyed and would highly recommend to everyone to read. My copy came from my local library so you may not need to buy it. I read Daniel Kahneman’s ” Thinking Fast and Slow” last weekend. Kahneman claims that we have two systems working in our brain System 1 that gives us ready information and often causes us to jump to conclusions and System 2 that does the mental work. System 2 though is lazy and once information becomes part of our known skill set System 1 takes over. This is why political experts are often wrong and cannot be trusted to predict election outcomes or war. Too much of human knowledge is built on the past and some things like the stock market are not predictable. I will not give any spoilers here, but I will say that I learned a lot reading this book.
I realize that I haven’t posted in twelve days and yet I have read more books. I finished Martin Yate’s “Knock ’em Dead: Secrets and Strategies for Success in an Uncertain World.” This book was recommended to me because I lost my job back in January and need to find one. The one thing I liked about the book was that Yate says to list everything you have ever done on a job rather than holding your Resume to one page. I know I have been told recently that I am over qualified for what I was doing and so now I need to majorly rewrite my life.
I hated this book. It took me nineteen days to read and that was not necessary as I am currently unemployed. It is extremely hard to read about bisexual rape scenes. Anal sex does not appeal to me and to read of someone forced to engage in it is hard. De Sade writes of rape after rape in his stories. Incest is also a predominant theme. It took me this long to write because I do not enjoy reading of human depravity and the punishment of virtue. Virtue is sacred and the Marquis de Sade laughs at virtue. I would personally not recommend this title. I want a story where good behavior is rewarded and evil men are punished.
January 30, 2012
I finished reading Henry James Seven Stories and Studies edited by Edward Stone as my first book of 2012. In this collection the reader is given the stories of: “The Marriages”, ” ‘Europe’ ” , “The Liar”, “The Real Thing”, “The Pupil”, “The Beast in the Jungle”, and “The Jolly Corner.” Each one of these stories is followed by criticism and journal entries by James himself. This gives the reader some insight into James’ thinking while the stories were fermenting in his mind. In some cases while he was writing. This is interesting to read as sometimes the reader can only guess at an author’s thought process as he writes. I really enjoyed this format. First I read one of the stories, then a passage from James himself, and then some criticism by others. It is a good format for students of literature since some of the criticism is both simple and some passages are more complex. These short stories are ones that engage the reader and allow the reader to stop and think about the world one in which finds themselves.
Another book that I finished reading that was written by Edward Stone was A Certain Morbidness: A View of American Literature. In this volume of criticism Stone traces the psychological aspect of American Literature back to Edgar Allen Poe’s story “The Murders in the Rue Morgue.” What is intriguing about this concept is that he quotes much from Sigmund Freud who admitted that many of his ideas could be found in American authors. The invention of the stream of consciousness style of writing came from an author paying close attention to his subconscious. American literature from the middle of the nineteenth century has always dealt with concepts of the macabre and grotesque. It was interesting to read that some of Freud and William James’s ideas came from their reading of the novels and short stories of Poe, Herman Melville, and Stephen Crane. This then leads to an interpretation of Robert Frost’s poetry and writings of Henry James, William Faulkner, and J.D. Salinger.
December 26, 2011
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