My first impression of this classic novel was, embarrassingly enough: “How the heck do I say the title??” I hadn’t even opened the book yet, and already I had questions. Seems like a fantastic start if you ask me.
Now possible options were two – I was fairly certain the title would either be pronounced like ‘Candid’ as in to speak the truth frankly OR like ‘Candied’ as in sugar coated and delicious. After all, Voltaire was French, I needed to mind my American vowel sound bias here. As I read through the novel, I rapidly come to the conclusion that either would be perfectly suitable for our protagonist. For those of you immediately calling in to question the accuracy of dubbing a grown man ‘candied’, please allow me to elaborate. Continue reading Saturday of Book Reviewing – Voltaire’s Candide
I’ve seen this book many a time on ‘inspirational and uplifting’ book lists, but had never considered that my wheelhouse, and thus had never before bothered to try to mine the wisdom from its pages. I can honestly say, post reading of Mitch Albom’s tribute to his former mentor and friend, that this was mildly inspirational, but heart-soaring-ly uplifting. You can tell I’m serious when I start making up words. So let us begin on this 1997 hit. It’s mini throwback time. Continue reading Saturday Of Book Reviewing – Albom’s tuesdays with Morrie
This is the first review, in possibly ever, where I won’t be quoting directly from the source material to convey thoughts evoked by parts of a novel. Here, it seems more fitting to discuss the overarching themes themselves. Themes like ‘art as a revelation of soul’ or ‘when culture creates a complacency amongst the mistreated’ and even ‘the ethics of rising technologies’. Specifically in that last? Some Orphan Blackesque predicaments. Warning readers: massive spoilers ahoy. Continue reading Saturday of Book Reviewing – Ishiguro’s Never Let Me Go
Awkward article heading aside, this book was all kinds of messed up. Robert A. Heinlein was from a ‘different’ time blah blah blah. His writing is straight up hard to digest; it’s hard to delve into and invest in a work so littered with racism and sexism. His female characters are flawed, often two dimensional, and his portrayal of minorities is downright insulting sometimes. These are major problems, however, the reality is, that if we got rid of and erased any and all books with these issues, I’m not sure we’d be able to read much from the past. And to be clear, the themes and ideas that Heinlein depicts in his novels are thought provoking and worth considering.
Saturdays are alllllll about the thinking and considering. Continue reading Saturday of Book Reviewing – Heinlein’s Farnham’s Freehold
Written by Bo Burnham and illustrated by Chance Bone, Egghead was published in 2013. I was familiar with Burnham’s stand up, and really, that’s why I first purchased the book.
Continue reading Saturday of Book Reviewing – Burnham’s Egghead: Or, You Can’t Survive on Ideas Alone
I click on pretty much any content that has ‘wolf’ in the title. This time it worked well in my favor.
Right. Soo this is my attempt at a Stevie-like update. Please don’t expect this to become a regular occurrence as it feels awkward as all hell to be jotting life down this way, but here goes: Continue reading Song Share and Intention Update!
This isn’t so much a review as it is an admittance of inadequacy: I do not possess the proper background to get the most out of these poems. Howl, the piece from which this book takes its name, was first published in 1956, a post WWII masterpiece. I’ve heard amazing things about Ginsberg’s work ‘defining a generation’ and you know what? I guess on a surface level I get that… but not to the depths. Continue reading Saturday of Book Reviewing – Ginsberg’s Howl and Other Poems
This is a play! Which is both new and exciting coming from Kurt Vonnegut’s brilliant, beautiful library. It was, however, also very strange. It was funny, as all his work is, but since it was dialogue driven I almost couldn’t tell he had written it. There’s still his distinct humanist positivity going on, but without his elaborate descriptions and carefully chosen details, I will say it fell a little short for me. This play was really a serious bout of ‘buts’ for me. It was entertaining, but I expected more. The characters were interesting, but they didn’t make me think the way his previous protagonists have. This wasn’t my favorite, but Kurt Vonnegut is still KING. Continue reading Saturday of Book Reviewing – Vonnegut’s Happy Birthday, Wanda June
I imagine many have read this book before myself. Since it’s so well known, I rather think I’ll ‘review’ it by continuing a trend I started with BJ Novak’s novel: answering John Green’s discussion questions at the end! There are a few, so bear with me folks, along this journey of general thought over specific details.
Some Intentionally Vague and Broad Discussion Questions Continue reading Saturday Of Book Reviewing – Green’s Looking For Alaska
Disclaimer #1: This book was written by a gentleman who does not believe in God, nor in free will. His perspective is both enlightening and potentially damaging to those who wish to hold tight to an exclusively religious worldview. To be frank: straight up avoid this book if you think people can only live by a moral code given by a higher power; nothing he writes will make sense to you. Continue reading Saturday of Book Reviewing – Harris’ Moral Landscape: How Science Can Determine Human Values