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The Book Thief by Marcus Zusak

(viewed 5483 times)
Highly recommended, this book is SO well written, The characters are believable and the story stays with you long after the last page has turned.

Posted by Essitam

Dark Banquet

(viewed 1181 times)
Dark Banquet by Bill Schutt. Very good so far, however, I doubt I'll be swayed by his case for ticks.

Opening paragraphs:

The ceiling tiles in the abandoned icehouse had fallen long ago, transforming the floor of the cavernous building into a debris-strewn obstacle course. "Hey, it's squishy," I said, stepping gingerly onto a slime-coated chunk just inside the doorway. "Some sort of foam."

"It's probably just asbestos." My wife, Janet, was a terrific field assistant, but I could tell that this place was already giving her a serious case of the creeps. "Yes, but with a protective coating of bat shit," I added, trying to cheer her up. "Let's check it out."

Wallerfield, in north-central Trinidad, had been a center for American military operations in the southern Atlantic during World War II. The land on which it had been built became part of the same Lend-Lease program that had brought Churchill's shell-shocked government fifty outdated American destroyers. Once, it had been the largest and busiest air base in the world, but the English were long gone, as were the Yanks (most of them anyway), and now Wallerfield was an overgrown ruin. Row upon row of prefab buildings had either been carted off in pieces by the locals or reclaimed by the scrubby forests of Trinidad's Central Plain, but because of its cement construction the icehouse was one of the few buildings still standing. Stark white below a mantle of tangled green, the icehouse belonged to bats - tens of thousands of them.

Posted by Caine

31st Dec 2008, 05:19   comments (0)

Christmas presents!

(viewed 1115 times)
...and research on the competition, as it were...



Posted by Laszlo Q. V. St-J. Xalieri

25th Dec 2008, 15:04   comments (4)

Christmas Reading since 1955

(viewed 1861 times)
One of my mother's friend was a children's librarian who sent us a box of fabulous books every Christmas. This one, Frogmorton, is a Christmas story with drawings by Ernest Shepard, the illustrator of the Winnie the Pooh books before they got Disneyfied. Frogmorton gets carefully put away with the Christmas decorations and brought out again every year. Does anybody else remember this book?

Posted by Factotum

20th Dec 2008, 17:10   | tags:,comments (3)

Outrageous Fortune by Tim Scott

(viewed 1533 times)
Surreal and funny in places with the fast paced action you'd expect in cyberpunk. Which it isn't. Only partially predictable. I got the 'what' early on but didn't get the why until I heard it (heard=read).

Would it have made more sense if I had read it rather than listened to the audiobook? I'll never know.

I'm not sure that 'enjoy' is the correct word for how I felt while reading it but it was strangely rewarding despite the ridiculously worthy/twee ending

Posted by Dhamaka

3rd Dec 2008, 19:32   comments (0)

Street Logos

(viewed 1386 times)
All about Graffiti Art

Posted by si_round

2nd Dec 2008, 19:48   comments (0)

The Stuff of Thought, by Steven Pinker

(viewed 1116 times)
Just finished this.

It goes a long way toward reversing some Wittgensteinian nonsense, but points only tentatively in the direction of how we can tweak our language artificially in order to train ourselves out of some causally and logically sloppy thinking.

Pinker's a good read wherever you can find him, irreverent and entertaining, but this book suffers the usual problems found in books about language, unfortunately written in some language or other. The necessary "meta"ness is a bit awkward in places.

The analysis of swearing and cursing makes up for a lot of the labor of shlepping through the thicker bits.


Posted by Laszlo Q. V. St-J. Xalieri

30th Nov 2008, 21:33   comments (1)

Men, Women & Chainsaws

(viewed 3127 times)
"A study of contemporary horror films in which feminist film theorist Carol J. Clover investigates the enduring popularity of the genre, and the questions which films such as 'Texas Chainsaw Massacre' and 'Halloween' raise about gender in the cinema."

I used this book a lot years ago for my dissertation. I absolutely love it.

Posted by Wendle