Week 94: The Unbearable Lightness of Being

The Unbearable Lightness of Being book review The Prague Spring was a period of mass protests against the Soviet Union, beginning in January, 1968, and continuing until August of that year. For a few months, under the leadership of Alexander Dubček, the citizens of the former Czechoslovakia experienced a liberalization of restrictions on travel, free [...]

By |2019-05-01T20:24:15+00:00May 1st, 2019|Uncategorized|1 Comment

Week 92: The Talented Mr. Ripley

The Talented Mr. Ripley book review The genius of Patricia Highsmith in this, her first Tom Ripley novel, is to create a villain so complex and vulnerable that you can't help rooting for him. He cons his way through life, defrauds and exploits those who trust him, and even commits murder. Twice. And yet [...]

By |2019-04-08T23:03:31+00:00April 8th, 2019|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Week 91: The Inheritance of Loss

The Inheritance of Loss book review   Kiran Desai's second novel, which was awarded the Man Booker Prize in 2006, is a multigenerational tale of migration, identity, and the cultural legacy of colonialism. If this sounds a bit too academic for your tastes, let me assure you that The Inheritance of Loss, while disturbing [...]

By |2019-04-02T16:41:11+00:00April 2nd, 2019|Uncategorized|2 Comments

Week 90: Brave New World

Brave New World book review O wonder! How many goodly creatures are there here! How beauteous mankind is! O brave new world, That has such people in't. — William Shakespeare, The Tempest, Act V, Scene I Brave New World was not the first dystopian novel of the 20th century; that honour goes, most likely, to Yevgeni [...]

By |2019-03-27T14:57:20+00:00March 27th, 2019|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Week 88: One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest

One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest book review Milos Forman's film of Ken Kesey's best-selling novel made Jack Nicholson a star. And deservedly so. Who can forget his portrayal of Randle Patrick McMurphy, the subversive troublemaker who wages psychological warfare with the Big Nurse, played by Louise Fletcher? The film, released in 1975, put [...]

By |2019-06-11T00:45:53+00:00March 12th, 2019|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Week 87: Slaughterhouse-Five

Slaughterhouse-Five book review "All this happened, more or less. The war parts, anyway, are pretty much true". So begins the introduction to Slaughterhouse-Five, Kurt Vonnegut's first really successful novel. Vonnegut served in the American army in World War II, was captured by the Germans, and, in February, 1945, survived the Allies' bombing of Dresden [...]

By |2019-03-06T16:11:07+00:00March 5th, 2019|Uncategorized|2 Comments

Week 86: The Picture of Dorian Gray

The Picture of Dorian Gray book review "The road to hell is paved with adverbs." Stephen King wrote that in On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft. He might just as well have been speaking about adjectives. Too many of them can get in the way of telling a story. Mark Twain would have [...]

By |2019-06-11T00:44:58+00:00February 25th, 2019|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Week 85: The Little Prince

The Little Prince book review I've always maintained that you shouldn't read a story looking for clues to the author's life - the story should stand apart, having its own life, its own universe, if you will. But this particular story has so many parallels with the writer's own narrative it simply begs to [...]

By |2019-02-19T16:01:00+00:00February 18th, 2019|Uncategorized|0 Comments