Jump to content

Recommended Posts

Work-related:

- A Bittersweet Season, by Jane Gross - part family autobiography, part analysis of the sociological and medical aspects of growing old and infirm, and part how-to book on being a responsible adult child for a parent in such a situation - 1/3 of the way through, and it's good, highly informative stuff

For my upcoming beach vacation:

- Consider the Lobster, by David Foster Wallace - found a copy in a used bookstore - for a while now, I've wanted to read a work by this much lauded, now sadly decreased, author

- Conversations with Scorsese, by Richard Schickel - not my favorite director, but flipping through a copy of this book at the library, I was immediately drawn into their articulate, accessible discussions

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

https://www.patheos.com/blogs/secularcinephile/

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Replies 733
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

I don't think I had a similar reaction to an audiobook until this year, as Emma Donaghue's Room reached its halfway point. I remember the section of Arlington Blvd. I was on, how much traffic was on the road (rush hour in the D.C. area -- crowded!) and how worked up I was.

Room is the best audiobook (at least in terms of production) I've listened to. I thought I'd get tired of the narrator kid's voice, but I never did. It ended up adding a lot to the experience of the book.

It's the side effects that save us.
--The National, "Graceless"
Twitter Blog

Link to post
Share on other sites

Just finished George R.R. Martin's A Feast For Crows, the fourth book in his A Song of Ice and Fire series. This book gets a fair amount of flak from fanboys, which I find ridiculous. I like how it takes a moment to stop and survey the carnage of the past three books, and has a meditative quality that works after all that's come before. It also introduces some interesting new characters, though I realize my definition of interesting might not mesh with everyone else's.

Also started Kate Atkinson's Case Histories, and I'm enjoying it a LOT so far.

Same goes for Michael Jarrett's Drifting on a Read: Jazz as a Model for Writing. It's fairly dense so far, but he thanks Byron Borger in the acknowledgments, so it can't be half bad.

Link to post
Share on other sites

In the last two weeks I've finished Anna Karenina and a collection of short stories titled Nice, Big American Baby by Judy Budnitz. Currently I'm reading Flannery O'Connors Mystery and Manners. I never realized she had such a biting sense of humor. I've heard, and read last night, her quote on writing programs not killing enough writers, but have found many more zingers. Laughing while reading a craft book--usually not something I do. :lol: By the time I'm done, M&M is going to have as much highlighting and post-it flags as my copy of Walking on Water-meaning there will be more highlighted passages in the book than not. :huh:

All of the above for school.

Not related to school reading--Please Look After Mom by Kyung-Sook Sin.

I like to say that I practice militant mysticism. I'm really absolutely sure of some things that I don't quite know.~~Rob Bell April/09 CT

http://whythewritingworks.com

Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm giving the Hunger Games audiobook another shot. Disc one is going a bit better this time than it did during than my initial attempt.

"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
  • 2 weeks later...

Reading:

The Magicians - Lev Grossman. This novel was billed as "Harry Potter in college!", which is somewhat misleading. But there are a lot of similarities thus far. It's a quick read, though I feel like the set-up is moving too fast.

A Dance With Dragons - George R.R. Martin. Sooooooooooooooooooooo good.

Two I'll start soon, but haven't yet: The Culture of Narcissism by Christopher Lasch and The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss.

Link to post
Share on other sites

The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss.

I'll save you the trouble... Mariah. :P

Formerly Baal_T'shuvah

"Everyone has the right to make an ass out of themselves. You just can't let the world judge you too much." - Maude 
Harold and Maude
 

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

I finished Embassytown by China Mieville a few days ago. It's a linguistic science fiction novel.

Now I'm reading a YA novel called Unwind, by Neal Shusterman. It's about a world where abortion has been made illegal in the United States, but when kids turn 13, parents can choose to have them "unwound," which means they're dismembered and all of their parts and organs are donated; the rationalization is that it isn't murder, because the kids are still technically alive, just not in a single body.

It's the side effects that save us.
--The National, "Graceless"
Twitter Blog

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

I'm just about finished with Nick Hornby's How to Be Good. I'm wishing now that I had my own copy as opposed to one from the library, so I could underline and re-read certain sections. Hornby brilliantly lays out the distinctions between liberal warm fuzzies as opposed to true, costly charity and love. And, I must confess, his first person narration nails the burnt-out misanthropy that we physicians can easily slip into.

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

https://www.patheos.com/blogs/secularcinephile/

Link to post
Share on other sites
- Conversations with Scorsese, by Richard Schickel - not my favorite director, but flipping through a copy of this book at the library, I was immediately drawn into their articulate, accessible discussions

I'm reading this now. Wonderful. Gives me a whole new respect for Scorsese, and has me chomping at the bit to revisit some of his films.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Finally finished The System of the World, the last volume of Neal Stephenson's Baroque Cycle. It really drifted in the middle, a fact I chalk up to my almost 10-month read of the book. It really picked up by the final third, though, and I plowed through it. Wrapped the ~3000 page collection up nicely, and I think I'd like to revisit it again someday.

Also recently finished Ken Bain's What the Best College Teachers Do and Neil Postman's The End of Education for two of my grad classes. The former was pretty good, though repetitive. Bain spent 15 years interviewing and questioning a variety of people in the academe to come up with a generous list of "great" faculty, and then interviewed them. There are some great tips and great ideas within, even if it slides occasionally into "that'll never happen here" territory. As for Postman, well...I've always liked Postman, even when I don't agree with everything he's saying.

So right now, I'm reading:

-Christopher Lasch - The Culture of Narcissism. Great so far, though my eyes have been glazing over in a few spots.

-Patrick Rothfuss - The Name of the Wind. Absolutely incredible fantasy. It's gotten a lot of acclaim, and I understand why. Rothfuss structured the narrative around a very singular character recounting his life story to a scribe, and man...it works. I should probably focus more on my required readings for school, but this is quite hard to put down.

-Parker Palmer & Arthur Zajonc - The Heart of Higher Education. I've honestly enjoyed most of the readings I've had for grad school, but this is just a drag. Palmer and Zajonc talk a lot about how amazing integrative education can be without ever talking about integrative education. Palmer's sections are significantly better than Zajonc's, which also makes for some very uneven portions of the book.

-H.P. Lovecraft - Dagon and Other Macabre Tales. The third definitive collection of Lovecraft stories from publisher Arkham House. There's a wonderful biography of Lovecraft at the beginning, and I've been taking it slow and focusing on one story a day. As even the editor noted, some of Lovecraft's worst stories are in this collection, but even the bad ones have some good writing or creepy segments.

I also will probably start Ron Hansen's The Assassination of Jesse James... when I polish off one of the above.

Link to post
Share on other sites

- Conversations with Scorsese, by Richard Schickel - not my favorite director, but flipping through a copy of this book at the library, I was immediately drawn into their articulate, accessible discussions

I'm reading this now. Wonderful. Gives me a whole new respect for Scorsese, and has me chomping at the bit to revisit some of his films.

I had much the similar response, such that it led me to watch a number of his films for the first time. I still don't feel the same awe for his work that I do for, say, Kurosawa, Truffaut, or Ozu, but I appreciate it much more now.

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

https://www.patheos.com/blogs/secularcinephile/

Link to post
Share on other sites

I picked up Bryan Burrough's Public Enemies from the Goodwill racks a few weeks back. This was the book that was the basis for the Michael Mann film, although the book covers so much more ground then just the Dillinger story. A fascinating history of the years of 1932 - '36, which were just a frenzy of mayhem and murder in the midwest. I really had no idea how many of these bank robberies and kidnappings overlapped each other in this short period of time. An excellent read, and really eye opening on how the FBI came into existence. Makes me wonder how much of this will get covered in Clint Eastwood's J. Edgar.

Edited by Baal_T'shuvah

Formerly Baal_T'shuvah

"Everyone has the right to make an ass out of themselves. You just can't let the world judge you too much." - Maude 
Harold and Maude
 

Link to post
Share on other sites

That sounds very interesting, BT - I just might check it out. With all of the work-related driving I've been doing lately, I've had a chance to hear some interesting books. Favorites include Brief Interviews with Hideous Men by David Foster Wallace (excellently, dramatically read by a number of actors) and Born Standing Up, an autobiography written and read by Steve Martin.

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

https://www.patheos.com/blogs/secularcinephile/

Link to post
Share on other sites

Just got Stephenson's Read Me. There goes a few consecutive sleepless nights.

"...the vivid crossing of borders between film and theology may save the film from the banality of cinema and festival business, and it may also save the church from the deep sleep of the habitual and the always known."

(Hans Werner Dannowski)

Filmwell | Twitter

Link to post
Share on other sites

Uh... just noticed that. I have been searching for it as READ ME, and that works. What a great name for a virus. Though I initially thought README was a clever name for a virus, as it has worked so well in the past.

This is my biggest misgiving about Kindle reading. It disconnects you from title and author by stripping the reading experience of the ever-present spine and/or dust jacket. I feel removed from reading culture because I am removed from the material form of reading culture.

Edited by M. Leary

"...the vivid crossing of borders between film and theology may save the film from the banality of cinema and festival business, and it may also save the church from the deep sleep of the habitual and the always known."

(Hans Werner Dannowski)

Filmwell | Twitter

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

Just made my biggest book splurge in ages. High points include The Secret Life of Pronouns by James Pennebaker, What It Is Like to Go to War by Karl Merlantes, and Witness to an Extreme Century: A Memoir by Robert Jay Lifton.

And waiting on a couple of graphic novels from the public library, follow ups to a couple of my favorites: Habibi by Craig Thompson of Blankets fame, and Wonderstruck by Brian Hugo Cabret Selznick.

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

https://www.patheos.com/blogs/secularcinephile/

Link to post
Share on other sites

I've recently started Pride of the Bimbos by John Sayles.

My wife and I for after dinner reading are doing Your Inner Fish: A Journey into the 3.5-Billion-Year History of the Human Body.

So far, the latter seems better.

A foreign movie can't be stupid.

-from the film
Armin

Link to post
Share on other sites

Just got Stephenson's Read Me. There goes a few consecutive sleepless nights.

Reamde, actually. That tricky Stephenson.

This was a let-down. It is a good action thriller, but that is the last thing I expected from Stephenson.

"...the vivid crossing of borders between film and theology may save the film from the banality of cinema and festival business, and it may also save the church from the deep sleep of the habitual and the always known."

(Hans Werner Dannowski)

Filmwell | Twitter

Link to post
Share on other sites

This was a let-down. It is a good action thriller, but that is the last thing I expected from Stephenson.

I'm pretty sure there was a Slate Salon article from a week or two ago that said the same thing. The comments (of which there were many) were divided between people saying: "Oh good, maybe I'll actually read Stephenson this time;" "Really? What a let down;" and "I am a long-time fan and still loved it."

Not sure into which category I'll fall, but I have a feeling it'll be the last one.

EDIT: found it Click!

Edited by Jason Panella
Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm reading Perdido Street Station by China Mieville for a class. It's a Dickensian future alien society noir with conspiracies and lots of thaumaturgy.

The only bad thing is that I have to read the whole thing in a week. And read a bunch of other stuff and grade lots of papers too.

Edited by Tyler

It's the side effects that save us.
--The National, "Graceless"
Twitter Blog

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


×
×
  • Create New...