I am not entirely sure why I avoided reading Stephen King all these years,
but now that I have started I don't want to stop. It is
the latest King book that I have read. The movie from 1990, which was
actually a TV mini-series, was one of my favorite scary movies growing up.
I figured the book would be alright, but somehow the visuals of a movie
seemed to be more theoretically compelling. I was wrong. The book is by
far better than the original movie, and is great indepdently. I will have
something to say about the new movie at the end.
Again on my search for things to read I went back to books that have won prizes and came up with
The Sympathizer the winner of the Pulitzer Prize for fiction. A story told with a
nonlinear timeline, unfolding details about who and what the narrator is, a fiction which could very
well have been fact. The language is literary almost too at fault at times. Yet the overall piece
once everything is unfolded makes complete sense given all you learn.
Taya started watching the Hulu show based on this book, and before I wanted to watch it I had to
read the book, so I picked up The Handmaid's Tale and got to work. Due to recent
developments in politics, this book as well as 1984 are once again best sellers, and after having
read this one I can understand why.
Chuck Palahniuk is one weird dude, I knew that after reading Fight Club. Reading
Lullaby has solidified my opinion. Describing this book would be a spoiler, but
I am not sure what else to do. Lullaby is about the magical and the mundane, both literally.
I laughed a lot, but that is more indicitive of my personality that the character of the book.
I guess I am reading the Dark Tower series now, so this was the second installment,
The Drawing of the Three. Having enjoyed the first book, but armed with the
knowledge that they only get better, I dove into this supremely strange book. Part of my plan was to
get through most of these books before seeing the movie, and based on my current pace I might get
through one or two more.
Winner of the Man Booker Prize, The Sellout is an hilarous, irreverent novel set
in roughly present day southern California. This is really a hard book to describe. I could give you
a plot summary, but that wouldn't really capture what the book is about. The short version is that
you really should read this book, and let yourself laugh even if for some reason you don't think you
Written by the author of Zen and The Art of Motorcycle Maintenance, Lila: An Inquiry Into
Morals is the next step in a philosophical system based on quality. This is the
metaphysics that was missing from the former book. I feel the latter book stands by itself, but to
really grasp what is going on it certainly was helpful to have read the first book.
Every once in a while a book comes along that many people talk about wanting to read or bragging
about having read and I often find it hard to get myself excited to read them.
Capital in the Twenty-First Century has come up in various discussions, radio
programs, and articles over the past couple years. I have a background in economics and an interest
in books that take very long term perspectives so this naturally made it on to my reading list. I
have been putting it off for a while and finally just decided that it was time to get down to it. An
exceptional book if only for the reason that he made the effort to collect the data and put forth a
systematic analysis of wealth and income inequality throughout the world and over a span of more
than 200 years. His interpretations of the data are not necessarily full-proof nor are his
moral assumptions strictly universal, but this does not detract from a great piece of scholarly
Country of My Skull is a very good book both in content and style. I had never
heard about the Truth and Reconciliation Committee (TRC) or maybe I had but did not remember the
details well enough. We went to the Apartheid museum in Johannesburg and I made an offhand remark
while watching one of the video clips that I found this TRC thing to be interesting. Taya was
shocked at my lack of knowledge about it and thus recommended I read Country of My Skull as a good
overview of both the TRC as well as to fill in more details about the fall of Apartheid.
I thoroughly enjoyed Guns, Germs, and Steel as it presented a narrative that was based on the
entirety of human history. This long time frame approach is appealing when I approach the subject of
history because most other time slices seem to be artifical. Sapiens: A Brief History of
Humankind similarly takes this very long view in an attempt to cover the entire
history of the human race starting with early homonids and progressing to an undestanding of how
homo sapiens specifically has taken over the world.