Jump to content

2004 Reading Journals

Recommended Posts

  • Replies 53
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

Just began rereading Graham Greene's The End of the Affair. His writing expresses brilliantly and passionately the conflicting emotions of love and hate.

If I get to see the film again sometime soon (Neil Jordan's remake, that is), I shall offer my comments, as per SDG's request.

Drop by The Grace Pages, a rest-stop for fellow pilgrims.

-- Dave aka Alvy

Link to post
Share on other sites

I'll join the club of people who are currently reading Order of the Phoenix. Quite enjoying it.

"A director must live with the fact that his work will be called to judgment by someone who has never seen a film of Murnau's." - François Truffaut


Reviews and essays at Three Brothers Film.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm still working on an exploration into fiction for the first time since high school, and i will be slow on a thread like this because books take me forever and a day. A book can take me over a month, even a small one -- and that's if i finish it.

Currently i have about 60 pages left in "The Lovely Bones," which Lynne Ramsay is slated to direct next year. After that i'll be reading "Morvern Callar" and then "The Virgin Suicides." I'll probably get back to this thread around Christmastime, when i've finished those three.


In an interstellar burst, I am back to save the Universe.

Filmsweep by Persona. 2013 Film Journal. IlPersona.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Recently read (month finished):


Frederick Buechner

- Love Feast (August) ***

- Treasure Hunt (Sept) ***


- That Hideous Strength (August) ***

Louis Sachar - Sideways Stories from Wayside School (August) **

Tolkien - Letters of J.R.R.Tolkien (August) ***

Rowling - Harry Potter: 1-3 (Sept.) ***

Jim Speigel - Hipocracy (Sept) **

Rowling - Harry Potter #4 (Oct) ***

Jay Hammond - his autobiography (Oct) **

Buechner - Telling the Truth (Dec) ****

Rowling - Harry Potter #5 (Dec) **

Joseph Heller - Catch 22 (Dec) ***


George MacDonald - At the Back of the North Wind (Jan) **

Tim Egan - The Good Rain (Feb) ***

Pierce - Tolkien: Man and Myth (Feb) ****

Buechner - Son of Laughter (May) **

John Long - Climbing Anchors (May) **

Robert L. Wolff - A Study of the Fiction of George MacDonald (June) *

Michael Frayn - Copenhagen (June) ***

Kierkegaard - Works of Love (August) ****

Them durn books 'O Robert Jordan (Wheel of Time series) ** (Sept)

Marc Reisner - Cadillac Desert: the American West and its Disappearing Water **** (Nov)

C. S. Lewis - Surprised by Joy *** (Dec)

Susan Hawatch - Ultimate Prizes *** (Dec)

George MacDonald - Lilith **** (Dec)

The stars are just a vague way of making recommendations to others:

* -> not noteworthy

** -> interesting

*** -> recommended

**** -> highly recommended

Edited by Jeff Kolb

So you ladies and you gentlemen, pull your bloomers on...

-Joe Henry

Link to post
Share on other sites


Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix finished 7/6/03, 4.5/5

See No Evil: The True Story of a Ground Soldier in the CIA's War on Terrorism by Robert Baer, finished 7/13/03 , 3.5/5

Daughter of Fortune by Isabel Allende, finished 7/27/03, 3.5/5

The Nanny Diaries by Emma McLaughlin and Nicola Kraus, 8/5/03, 3.5/5

The Poisonwood Bible, by Barbara Kingsolver, 8/17/03, 2.5/5

Hey, Nostradamus! by Douglas Coupland, 8/24/03, 4.0/5

Mother to Mother by Sindiwe Magona 4.0/5

Oryx and Crake by Margaret Atwood 4.5/5

Keeping Watch by Laurie King 4.5/5

Wolves of the Calla by Stephen King 4.5/5

DaVinci Code, by Dan Brown 1.5/5

The Dive from Clausen's Pier, by Ann Packer 4.0/5

The No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency, by Alexander McCall Smith 3.0/5

The Secret Lives of Bees, by Sue Monk Kidd 4.0/5

Seabiscuit, by Laura Hillenbrand 4.0/5

I Capture the Castle, by Dodie Smith 4.5/5

Adventures in Missing the Point: How the Culture-Controlled Church Neutered the Gospel by Tony Campolo and Brian McLaren 4.5/5

Life of Pi, by Yann Martel 4.5/5

The Things They Carried, by Tim O'Brien 4.0/5

Dandelion Wine, by Ray Bradbury 3.5/5

Fast Food Nation by Eric Schlosser 4.0/5

Dance of the Dissident Daughter by Sue Monk Kidd 2.0/5

Hidden Gospels: How the Search for Jesus Lost Its Way, by Philip Jenkins 4.0/5

Girl Meets God, by Lauren Winner 4.5/5

Homosexuality in the Church: Both Sides of the Debate, ed. by Jeffrey S. Siker 4.0/5

The Time Travelers Wife by Audrey Niffenegger 4.5/5

The Story We Find Ourselves In, by Brian McLearen 3.5/5


That Hideous Strength, by CS Lewis (reread)


Bel Canto by Ann Patchett

The Great Influenza by John Barry

Edited by teresakayep
There are stories of coincidence and chance, of intersections and strange things told, and which is which nobody knows; and we generally say, "Well, if that was in a movie, I wouldn't believe it." --from Magnolia
Link to post
Share on other sites


The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring by Tolkien

The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers by Tolkien

The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King by Tolkien

The Silmarillion by Tolkien

The Hobbit by Tolkien

The Letters of JRR Tolkien

The Moviegoer by Walker Percy

The Beautiful and Damned by F. Scott Fitzgerald


Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad

Watership Down by Richard Adams

Link to post
Share on other sites

I just got done with:

The DaVinci Code by Dan Brown

Finding Common Ground by Tim Dones

The Good Book by Gomes

And am currently reading:

Courage to Be by Tillich

Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austin (my yearly reading of it!)

The Nanny Diaries

Books on the horizon:

several. . .will be attending seminary in the Fall and Overdosing on books!

Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm currently on my 2nd time through the new Harry Potter, but I'm reading the British version this time instead of the American one. smile.gif

I've also picked up John Granger's "The Hidden Key to Harry Potter", which is quite intriguing. I glanced through it the other day, and he reaches some astounding conclusions. I haven't yet read the chapters that support those conclusions, but I'm very interested to see how well he makes his case.

I'm also in the middle of Michael Martin's "Atheism, Morality, and Meaning". Once I get a chance, I'm planning to bite into some Bertrand Russell and some Quine.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Have read: (As of start of July)

Lucas on Life 2

Explorations in Theology & Film - Marshal & Ortiz (eds)

Exodus - Uris


Love Languages

Truth is Stranger than it used to be - Middleton & Walsh

Strangers and Friends

The search for the Historical Israel

How movies helped save my soul

Messy Spirituality

Imaging the Divine - Baugh

Why do you Believe what you believe about Jesus.

Purpose Driven Life

1 John

What about the OT

Bringing your soul to work

Currently reading:

Straub (Roud)

How to read New Testament Greek


Daily Study Bible Letters of John

The Practic of the Presence of God

The Future Hope (degree notes)

Planning to Read

Work: Prison or Place of Destiny

How to read a film (Monaco)

I too might be starting a degree in the Autumn (part time distance learning)


Link to post
Share on other sites


Telling the Truth: The Gospel as Tragedy, Comedy & Fairy Tale 40stars.gif

Saint Paul Goes to the Movies 40stars.gif

Duncton Wood 40stars.gif

The Five People You Meet in Heaven (Audio) 40stars.gif

Balzac and the Little Chinese Seamstress (Audio) 35stars.gif (Zhang Yimou could make a nice film of this, but the government would veto it.)

Irish Gold 35stars.gif

It All Started with Marx dated, but still 35stars.gif

The Book of Merlyn 40stars.gif

Murder at Wrigley Field 30stars.gif

Jesus: A Revolutionary Biography 45stars.gif

Current reads

At home: Ben Franklin's Autobiography

At office: Useless Beauty by Robert Johnston

reading on and off

At home: The Lone Ranger and Tonto Fist Fight in Heaven by Sherman Alexie

At office: Bhagavad Gita with commentary by Mohatma Gandhi

Edited by Darrel Manson
A foreign movie can't be stupid.

-from the film

Link to post
Share on other sites

UPDATED 12/3/04


Listening to - David Sedaris' Barrell Fever and Other Stories

Recently finished - Bill Bryson's Neither Here Nor There

Upcoming - Florence of Arabia, by Christopher Buckley


Recently finished - Several books for seminary classes. They're all a blur.

Reading - The Da Vinci Code response book (forgot the title -- maybe The Gospel Code?, by Ben Witherington

Upcoming - Class reading for the spring semester. Hoping to squeeze in some books during my winter break, but I'm not sure which title to choose.

Edited by Christian

"What matters are movies, not awards; experiences, not celebrations; the subjective power of individual critical points of view, not the declamatory compromises of consensus." - Richard Brody, "Godard's Surprise Win Is a Victory for Independent Cinema," The New Yorker

Link to post
Share on other sites

Recently Finished

Ruthless Trust - Brennan Manning

Beatles - Robert Freeman

Reel to Deal - Dov S-S Simens

The Search to Belong - Joseph R. Myers

Everyday Apocalypse - David Dark

New Way to be Human - Charlie Peacock

Currently Reading

Grapes of Wrath - John Steinbeck

Eyes Wide Open - William D. Romanowski

Wanderings - Chiam Potok

In Search of the Church - Keith A. Russell

The Wisdom of Leo Tolstoy - Leo Tolstoy

Patiently Awaiting

Modern Art and the Death of a Culture - H.R. Rookmaaker

Traveling Mercies - Anne Lemott

Edited by asher

...the kind of film criticism we do. We are talking about life, and more than that the possibility of abundant life." -M.Leary

"Dad, how does she move in mysterious ways?"" -- Jude (my 5-year-old, after listening to Mysterious Ways)

[once upon a time known here as asher]

Link to post
Share on other sites

Recent reads:

Hammers and Nails, M. Dickerson

You Shall Know Our Velocity, D. Eggers (second time)

Upcoming reads:

"An Interruption," D. Eggers (addition to YSKOV)

Hallowed Be This House, T. Howard


Metalfoot on Emmanuel Shall Come to Thee's Noel: "...this album is...monotony...bland, tripy fare..."

Link to post
Share on other sites

Ouch! I realized I haven't updated this in almost a year!


A Thousand Acres by Jane Smiley

Eichmann In Jerusalem by Hannah Arendt

The Optimist's Daughter by Eudora Welty

Mr. Sammler's Planet by Saul Bellows

In The Country Of Last Things by Paul Auster

The Coming of Conan the Cimmerian (short story anthology) by Robert. E. Howard

The Screwtape Letters by C.S. Lewis


The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay by Michael Chabon

The Complete Peanuts: 1951-52 by Charles Schultz


The Savage Tales of Solomon Kane (short story anthology) by Robert E. Howard

Till We Have Faces by C.S. Lewis

The Lord of the Rings (yearly Fall tradition) by J.R.R. Tolkien

Edited by Anders

"A director must live with the fact that his work will be called to judgment by someone who has never seen a film of Murnau's." - François Truffaut


Reviews and essays at Three Brothers Film.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Recently read:

Last Car to Elysian Fields, by James Lee Burke (mystery)

The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay, Michael Chabon

Parnassus on Wheels and The Haunted Bookshop, Christopher Morley


A Theology of Reading: The Hermeneutics of Love, by Alan Jacobs

A World of Love, Elizabeth Bowen

The Medieval Hero on Screen from Beowulf to Buffy

To be read:

A Visit to Vanity Fair: Moral Essays on the Present Age, by Alan Jacobs

Edited by BethR

There is this difference between the growth of some human beings and that of others: in the one case it is a continuous dying, in the other a continuous resurrection. (George MacDonald, The Princess and Curdie)

Isn't narrative structure enough of an ideology for art? (Greg Wright)

Link to post
Share on other sites


Edited by John

All great art is pared down to the essential.
--Henri Langlois


Movies are not barium enemas, you're not supposed to get them over with as quickly as possible.

--James Gray

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 3 weeks later...

Recently Read

Shadow of the Almighty (Journals of Jim Elliot) - Elisabeth Elliot (re-read)

Through Gates of Splendor - Elisabeth Elliot

The Savage My Kinsman - Elisabeth Elliot

Passion and Purity - Elisabeth Elliot


Bird by Bird - Ann Lamott

Raised in Captivity: A Memoir of a Life Long Churchaholic - C. McNair Wilson

The Dayuma Story - Ethel Emily Wallis

To Be Read

a very long list, including...

Cry, the Beloved Country - Alan Paton

Flabbergasted - Ray Blackstone

"Could we ever know each other in the slightest without the arts?"

« Nous connaîtrions-nous seulement un peu nous-mêmes, sans les arts? »

Quoted on Canada's $20 bill; from Gabrielle Roy's novel La montagne secrète. The English translation, The Hidden Mountain, is by Harry L. Binsse.

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 1 month later...

Recent Reads

Ben Elton, Dead Famous

Roderick Thorp, Nothing Lasts Forever (AKA Die Hard)

Frank Schaeffer, Portofino

Max Allan Collins & Richard Piers Rayner, The Road to Perdition

Thomas S. Hibbs, Shows About Nothing: Nihilism in Popular Culture from The Exorcist to Seinfeld

Nikos Kazantzakis, The Last Temptation

Robin Riley, Film, Faith, and Cultural Conflict: The Case of Martin Scorsese's The Last Temptation of Christ

Peter Gillquist, Becoming Orthodox: A Journey to the Ancient Christian Faith

Stephen King, Secret Window, Secret Garden (in Four Past Midnight)

Gail Carson Levine, Ella Enchanted

Erica Jantzen, Six Sugar Beets, Five Bitter Years

Connie Brummel Crook, The Perilous Year

Janice L. Dick, Eye of the Storm

Trudy J. Morgan-Cole, Esther: A Story of Courage

Thomas Cahill, Sailing the Wine-Dark Sea: Why the Greeks Matter

Timothy Ware, The Orthodox Church

Tom Harpur, The Pagan Christ: Recovering the Lost Light

Ira Levin, The Stepford Wives

Isaac Asimov, I, Robot

Harlan Ellison, I, Robot: The Illustrated Screenplay

William Shatner with Judith & Garfield Reeves-Stevens, Star Trek: Captain's Peril

Garry Wills, Saint Augustine's Memory

Eric Schlosser, Fast Food Nation: The Dark Side of the All-American Meal

Dan Brown, The Da Vinci Code

William Peter Blatty, The Exorcist

Frederica Mathewes-Green, At the Corner of East and Now: A Modern Life in Ancient Christian Orthodoxy

Anne Holm, I Am David

Lemony Snicket, The Bad Beginning

Lemony Snicket, The Reptile Room

Lemony Snicket, The Wide Window

Lemony Snicket, The Miserable Mill

Lemony Snicket, The Austere Academy

S. Brent Plate, ed., Re-Viewing the Passion: Mel Gibson's Film and Its Critics

Lemony Snicket, The Ersatz Elevator

Lemony Snicket, The Vile Village

Lemony Snicket, The Hostile Hospital

Lemony Snicket, The Unauthorized Autobiography

Lemony Snicket, The Carnivorous Carnival

Lemony Snicket, The Slippery Slope

Mark Steyn, Broadway Babies Say Goodnight: Musicals then and now

Harlan Ellison, The City on the Edge of Forever: The Original Teleplay that Became the Classic Star Trek Episode

Edited by Peter T Chattaway

"Sympathy must precede belligerence. First I must understand the other, as it were, from the inside; then I can critique it from the outside. So many people skip right to the latter." -- Steven D. Greydanus
Now blogging at Patheos.com. I can also still be found at Facebook, Twitter and Flickr. See also my film journal.

Link to post
Share on other sites


-Everyday Apocalypse, by David Dark

-Letters Across the Divide, by David Anderson and Brent Zuercher - American race issues discussed by a black pastor and a white friend - quite good

-Walking Away from Faith, by Ruth Tucker - a survey of why people leave the Christian faith, by a professor of missions. Frustratingly superficial, but glad I read it anyway.



-Mountains Beyond Mountains, by Tracy Kidder - biography of Paul Farmer, a Harvard physician who's taking Christ's 'preferential option for the poor' seriously, through his work in Haiti, Peru, and Siberia. A potentially life-changing read.

- Maigret Afraid, by Georges Simenon - Another pleasant bonbon by Simenon - a diverting psychological mystery and glimpse of Mid-20th Century French culture

- To End All Wars, by Ernest Gordon - The autobiography upon which Cunningham based his film. Very good.


- Adventures in Missing the Point, by Tony Campolo and Brian McLaren - a thought-provoking challenge to shake off the shackles of culture in living Christianly.

- Amazing Grace: The Lives of Children and the Conscience of a Nation, by Jonathan Kozol - a collection of interviews and impressions from time spent in the South Bronx, one of the poorest regions of the United States. Like the title says, amazing.


- The Uses of Haiti, by Paul Farmer - an illuminating history lesson, on the effects of nearly two centuries' worth of U.S. 'nation-building' and 'regime change' foisted on Haiti

- Gospel of Mark


- The Great Big Book of Tomorrow, by Tom Tomorrow - subversive political cartoons, alternately hilarious, thought-provoking, and redundant

- Father Elijah, by Michael O'Brien - apocalyptic fiction done very well (I never thought I'd be saying that)


- The Fountain at the Center of the World - Ugh...only made it through about 50 pages of this propaganda disguised as a novel

- The Dew Breaker, by Edwidge Danticat - a powerful set of intertwined stories about Haitians trying to survive under Duvalier and in the present day. I'm eager to read more of Ms. Danticat's fiction.

- the book of Revelation


- Atonement, by Ian McEwan - the 2nd half made up for the rather slow beginning

- I'm Not Scared, by Niccolo Ammaniti - a decent page-turner, rich in atmosphere, but I'm not sure why it's such a big deal


- Life of Pi - maybe it's just me, but I found the 2nd half rather plodding

- Generation Kill, by Evan Wright - very interesting Marines-eye view of the war in Iraq


- The Korean War, by Max Hastings - a readable history of 'the forgotten war'

- Blankets, by Craig Thompson - the hype on this board is merited! read it and be moved


- Good-bye, Chunky Rice, by Craig Thompson - a touching, pre-'Blankets' work by the graphic novelist - good, but doesn't approach the greatness of the later work

- The Mystery of Georges Simenon, by Bresler - a biography of my favorite mystery writer - quite a character, initially adventurous then sordid then rather pathetic

- The Iliad, by Homer (trans. Fagles) - this highly acclaimed recent translation makes it clear that war has always been gruesome and spirit-crushing; interesting to compare with the recent film

- The Sorrow of War, by Bao Ninh - this semi-autobiographical work by a former North Vietnamese soldier was banned in his home country. Immersive, heartbreaking tale.

Edited by Andrew

To be an artist is never to avert one's eyes.
- Akira Kurosawa


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 3 months later...

Just Finished

One Hundred Years of Solitude

The Time Traveler's Wife


Next on the List

Walking on Water by Madeline L'Engle (for the second time, but it has been many years)

In the middle of

Urban Tribes by Ethan Waters

A New Kind of Christian by Brian McLaren

The Younger Evangelicals

The Artist's Way

O guiding night! O night more lovely than the dawn!--John of the Cross
Link to post
Share on other sites
This topic is now closed to further replies.

  • Create New...