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review 2018-10-17 05:44
The Last Anniversary Book Quote
The Last Anniversary - Liane Moriarty

Great quote from Liane Moriarty's The Last Anniversary.

 

Delightful. Liane Moriarty’s novel The Last Anniversary is a wonderful blend of chick lit, drama and cozy mystery. Moriarty’s protagonist Sophie Honeywell projects the image of an independent, sophisticated 39-year-old career woman who knows and gets what she wants, but deep down she yearns for something more. Continue reading >>

Source: bookloverbookreviews.com/2010/05/book-review-last-anniversary-by-liane.html
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review 2018-10-17 02:31
Puliter Prize winning novel 'Less'

Less by Andrew Sean GreerLiterary awards are rarely sufficient motivation for me to choose one title over another — the enjoyment of literature being notoriously subjective — but since Less was already on my wishlist, its recent Pulitzer Prize win firmed up my decision to purchase.

 

What immediately struck me was the unusual narrative structure… predominantly first-person present tense (identity undisclosed) yet omnipresent.

From where I sit, the story of Arthur Less is not so bad.

Look at him: seated primly on the hotel lobby’s plush sofa, blue suit and white shirt, legs knee-crossed so that one polished loafer hangs free of its heel. The pose of a young man.

But on occasion more like third-person. It is both confounding and intriguing. Continue reading >>

Source: bookloverbookreviews.com/2018/05/less-by-andrew-sean-greer-book-review.html
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review 2018-09-29 14:40
Dying-Off Readership: "Against the Day" by Thomas Pynchon
Against the Day - Thomas Pynchon


(original review, 2006)

Art is a social medium, a material medium, an intellectual medium, an economic medium: it consists of a great deal more than surfaces. Art that consisted only of surfaces - if such a thing were possible - would be of no larger significance than a crossword puzzle. This is true even of painting - the only art whose medium can be credibly represented as being 'all surface'. I'll also point out that apart from having entered the language in the form of the term 'Rabelaisian' - now merely shorthand for 'characterized by coarse humour or bold caricature' - Rabelais himself is little read outside the academy and, like Shakespeare, often quite painfully unamusing.

 

If you're into stuff like this, you can read the full review.

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text 2018-09-28 14:45
Reading progress update: I've listened to 172 out of 943 minutes.
A Desperate Fortune - Susanna Kearsley,Katherine Kellgren

23 squares down, 2 to go.

 

So far it's mostly enjoyable -- let's hope it's going to stay that way.  Turns out I could also have included that in my "Summer of Spies" reading ...

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review 2018-09-27 03:17
ONE MAN'S STRUGGLE AGAINST A NATION SET ON OPPRESSING & DEBASING HIM
Black Boy - Richard Wright,Edward P. Jones

TODAY (September 26th, 2018) I finished re-reading "BLACK BOY." I first read it when I was in high school many, many years ago. At the time I read it, the book left a big impression on me. Yet, as time went on, I gave Richard Wright's autobiography little more than a second thought. So, when one of the Goodreads clubs to which I belonged chose "BLACK BOY" as the Book of the Month, I was eager to see what I might find or discover from re-reading it. From the moment I plunged into the first paragraph, I felt like I was reading it for the first time, with fresh eyes.

Wright brought to me, as a reader, his fears, hopes, and dreams that he had while growing up in the South - be it in Mississippi (where he was born), Arkansas, and Tennessee. He lived with hunger, fears of running afoul of white Southerners (which required that he'd learn fast how to act, think, and be among them -- otherwise, he could end up dead, as had happened with one of his uncles who had a thriving business that whites resented him for having), and his own desire to lead a freer, independent existence within the larger society. That is, the U.S. as he knew it to be during the 1910s and 1920s.

After some effort and a lot of determination, Wright eventually was able to save enough money to go live in the North, where one of his aunts lived. Upon arriving there, in his own words: "Chicago seemed an unreal city whose mythical houses were built of slabs of black coal wreathed in palls of gray smoke, houses whose foundations were sinking slowly into the dank prairie. Flashes of steam showed intermittently on the wide horizon, ... The din of the city entered my consciousness, entered to remain for years to come. The year was 1927." 

Wright would go on to work a variety of odd jobs (including work with the post office) and join the Communist Party in the early 1930s, which gave him invaluable lessons in human psychology that he would later carry over into his writing. 

This is a book that I would wholeheartedly recommend to anyone seeking to understand the effects of man's inhumanity to man, as well as the redemptive power of the spirit that refuses to submit to degradation and oppression imposed upon it, seeking a newer world and better life.

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