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review 2017-12-20 20:46
Thinking ahead
The Great Questions of Tomorrow (TED Books) - David Rothkopf

Have you guys ever watched a TED Talk? Well, apparently some of those Ted Talks are turned into published works so that the ideas can be delved into a little deeper. (To see more you can visit their website here. (They haven't asked me to review today's book by the way.)) I hadn't watched David Rothkopf's talk but The Great Questions of Tomorrow was featured in my regular 'what's new at Simon & Schuster' email and it seemed to be calling my name. Rothkopf is exploring a very wide and diverse range of topics with a central theme of  'what does this mean for the future?' running through them all. I guess it should come as no surprise that this book thoroughly freaked me out while at the same time fascinating me. Have you thought about the future of drone warfare and whether or not it might constitute the necessity for intelligent machines to have rights as members of society? WELL, NOW YOU ARE. He jumped from frightening scenarios like that to ones that hadn't even occurred to me such as complete mobile banking which would see the demise of physical currency and brick and mortar banks. O_O I especially enjoyed his take on government and how we should be trying to elect leaders who not only understand technology but can look towards the future to prepare accordingly. His example of how this was not done was that just because there was one shoe bomber it shouldn't mean we have to remove our shoes at airports into perpetuity. All in all, it was a fascinating read that I zipped right through. It's great for the people in your life (or yourself!) that enjoy philosophical discussions about the future and how actions of today and yesterday have and should continue to have direct bearing on how we handle events in the future. 10/10

 

Rothkopf's original TED Talk "How fear drives American politics"

 

 

What's Up Next: Find the Good: Unexpected Life Lessons From a Small-Town Obituary Writer by Heather Lende

 

What I'm Currently Reading: Mine Own Execution by Nigel Balchin

Source: readingfortheheckofit.blogspot.com
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review 2017-10-30 08:21
The Science of Why by Jay Ingram
The Science of Why: Answers to Questions About the World Around Us - Jay Ingram,Jay Ingram,Audible Studios

TITLE:  The Science of Why:  Answers to Questions About the World Around Us

 

AUTHOR:  Jay Ingram

 

PUBLICATION DATE:  2016

 

FORMAT:  Audiobook

 

 

_________________________

 

I haven't had much luck with audiobooks.  They tend to put me to sleep or my mind wonders or the reader doesn't appeal to me.  Anyway, I decided to give audiobooks another try by selecting a book with short, non-related chapters.  The Science of Why looked like a perfect book for this trial.  Unfortunately, I'm still not convinced audiobooks will work for me, and I wasn't impressed by the book either.

 

This is a collection of a few interesting, but mostly silly questions about a variety of topics and their scientific answers. I enjoyed the few topics that interested me, but the majority of the topics were frivolous and thus not enjoyable. After a while, the book started to get tedious.  However, due to the nature of the questions, this book may appeal to teenagers.

 

In terms of the audio book, the author reads fairly well, though he did sound like he could use a drink and pronouncing "te" instead of "to" got really annoying after a few chapters.

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text 2017-09-07 16:50
5 Best Study Questions on To Kill a Mockingbird

to kill a mockingbird

 

‘To Kill a Mockingbird,' written by Harper Lee, is a seminal work which is considered to be one of the most popular and influential books to tackle issues such as racism and the justice system in America. It was published in 1960 at a time when America was still reeling from the effects of racial segregation, and issues of racial profiling and discrimination against people of color are still rampant.

 

It was met with critical acclaim and won the Pulitzer Prize for fiction. However, it got mixed reactions from the public on its early release, but eventually got a better reception and became an American class worldwide.  It has been the only published book of Harper Lee for decades since its release, until the other book, ‘Go Set a Watchman’ was released, but it happened in more than 50 years later in 2015.

 

Most of the story revolves around the Finch’s family and the people of the Maycomb town, with the main characters Atticus Finch, and his children Scout and Jem, their friend Dill, and the mysterious neighbor Boo Radley.

 

No matter, whether you’re only reading it for the first time or are already revisiting it for a school assignment, there are a lot of insights that can be gained from reading 'To Kill a Mockingbird'. Below we list down some study ideas that would help you in creating a discussion or in writing a paper for this classic work of literature.

 

Suggested Study Questions for Reading ‘To Kill a Mockingbird’:

 

  1. 1. What is the significance of the children’s encounters with Boo Radley in the story?

 

The character of Boo Radley served mainly as both an anchor and a pivot for the children regarding their character development throughout the book. At first, Boo was seen as some sort of an outsider, but eventually, children created a special friendship with him. How did their friendship with Boo plant the seeds for a value of compassion awakening in the children, regardless of what society thinks about them?

 

  1. 2. How children’s innocence is affected by the harsh realities of a racist society, particularly the one illustrated during the trial of Tom Robinson?

 

The scene of Tom Robinson’s trial is an important point that makes the book so memorable, and this is what makes this book hold its place as one of the most famous works of literature. There is a need to highlight the disparity between the presented evidence, which clearly proves Tom’s innocence, and how bias and prejudice affect the ruling of the jury.

 

  1. 3. What drives Atticus to fight for Tom Robinson and how does this affect the family’s relationship with the people of Maycomb?

 

It is said that Atticus’ character has become a model for lawyers who want to serve with integrity. In a society where it is easier to conform, what could drive characters like Atticus Finch to represent a person who is vilified by almost everyone in their town? Point out how did his choice to represent Tom has turned the Finch family to the outcasts of their city, and how were they able to find a community within the black people who treated them as of their own.

 

  1. 4. Most of the story is presented in Scout’s perspective, why you think Harper Lee did choose to write it from a viewpoint of a child?

 

The children are great vessels to tell the story since their innocence still leads them to be more impressionable and observant when it comes to the things that are happening around them. Since they are young, their prejudices against other people are not as ingrained as compared to the adults in Maycomb, and they are still willing to see the best in people, regardless of their skin color or place they take in society.

 

  1. 5. Atticus Finch describes a Mockingbird as an innocent creature, that does not cause any harm to people. The quotation “Mockingbirds don’t do one thing but make music for us to enjoy but sing their hearts out for us. That’s why it’s a sin to kill a mockingbird.” is one of the most definitive passages in the book. Discuss the reason behind calling it a sin to kill a mockingbird.

 

One of the greatest and perhaps the most climactic turning points for the characters in the book is the verdict and subsequent death of Tom Robinson in the hands of the supposed justice system. It brings out a great moral question, which is the heart of this novel. Compare this with the death of child’s innocence, when they have to witness such great injustice in a seemingly small and quiet town.

 

Regarding its importance, To Kill a Mockingbird has never wavered in its position as one of the most highly-regarded books of the last century.  Even until now, the relevance of this novel still rings true in a society where problems and issues concerning racism still exist. Recent events have shown us that racism is still alive in America, which is why a close reading of this work is relevant for students. It shows how these issues have a long history dating back from the time of social policies that were oppressive to people of color.

 

Literature has long been a tool of social awakening, and whether this was Harper’s Lee original intention or not, as in old interviews, she said that the story was loosely-based on her childhood experiences growing up in the South. Perhaps that fact has caused the appeal of this work in the voice of children; it still manages to instill humor and compassion on serious issues like rape, oppression and social injustice without failing to drive the main point through. Students at elementary and high school benefit from reading books on social problems in a voice that they can recognize, as it resonates with them deeply, and hopefully, instill the values that the book hopes to impart when they grow up.

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text 2017-01-16 21:53
A LOOK INTO "THE SEX LIVES OF ENGLISH WOMEN"
The Sex Lives of English Women: Intimate Questions and Unexpected Answers - Wendy Jones

I first learned of this book from having listened (online) to an interview the author gave BBC Radio London last summer. What she said about her book, "THE SEX LIVES OF ENGLISH WOMEN: Intimate Questions and Unexpected Answers" was enough to pique my curiosity and induce me to buy the book. I read it at a leisurely pace over several months and came to appreciate the candor with which the women in the book spoke about their sex lives and views on sexuality. Among the women interviewed were: a nun, a lesbian, a transexual, a student, a trapeze artist in her 30s, a veiled Muslim woman in her 20s, a burlesque dancer, a feminist into BDSM, a pianist, and a 94 year old widow (who, before marriage, admits to have had a variety of enjoyable sexual experiences as a land girl in Britain's Land Army during World War II).

Frankly, I think any man who wants to understand women as they really are would benefit from reading "The Sex Lives of English Women." It reinforced my belief that a man can never know enough about women. Indeed, a man should value, cherish, and appreciate the relationships he has with them, either in the bedroom or outside of it. That means making an effort to establish meaningful connections with women, provided they are receptive to him. What's more, there is a quote from one of the women interviewed for this book that really stood out for me, and it is this: "Sex is a massive risk and adventure because you don't know who you're going to reveal in yourself."

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text 2016-11-23 10:55
Movie Vs Book - Fault In Our Stars

So I'm about 30 mins into the movie and really enjoying it so far. The book was brilliant, no doubt, but I had fears the movie wouldn't live up to my high expectations. So far it's not letting me down. (yay)

Anyways the whole point of this post is you know when your watching a movie and something happens and you swear a detail is off and it really bugs you. Especially because your not sure if your right or wrong because it's been so long since you've read the book?
Well I'm having that moment but with something a bit bigger than a minor detail..... I was totally under the impression that Augustus was well... of colour. (Which personally I would totally dig) Now I know this was a giant issue with Hunger Games and maybe that was reflected while I was reading The Fault In Our Stars? It has been quite a few years.... I don't know. :/

Did anyone else feel the same in relation to this book? or have a similar thing happen to them?

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