Friday, February 2, 2018

January 2018 Book Reports

Great Expectations by Charles Dickens - I read this book many years ago, while in high school, and decided I didn't like Charles Dickens. Now I know better, having rediscovered Dickens and enjoying his books immensely. I thought it appropriate to return to this book to see if maturity improved it. It did, though it is not my favorite Dickens novel. It's quite long with most of the "action" taking place in just a few chapters near the end. It did give me a chance to ponder how education separates us from those we love, though Pip's separation begins not with education but with embarrassment and covetousness. One thing I don't like about the Audible books is how much more difficult it is than in print or even an e-book to mark passages. I tried with the bookmarking, but it's just not the same. So I don't have nice passages for a post or for my commonplace book. I did, however, get to listen to the book when I didn't have time to read it. (purchased Audible audiobook, though I think it's quite inexpensive if you have the Kindle version)

One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich by Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, translated by H. T. Willetts - link to my post (purchased used copy)

The Inexplicable Universe: Unsolved Mysteries (The Great Courses) by Professor Neil deGrasse Tyson - I'm sure I picked this out during one of the many Great Courses sales Audible has. I listened to it recently when I wanted something short between novels. This course is six lectures of about thirty minutes each, during which the professor chats about mysteries of the universe particularly focused on quantum physics and astronomy. Though he wasn't always entirely respectful of a belief in God (or any higher power), the lectures themselves were interesting. I haven't had any real physics since high school, so much of the material was new to me. I learned more about quarks, anti-matter, and black holes than I knew before and was pleased. (purchased during an Audible sale)

The Island of Dr. Moreau by H. G. Wells - The actual science of Dr. Moreau is impossible, but the prospects for blending the human and the animal are more possible than ever with modern science. The tendency of scientists to continue along a line of inquiry without contemplating the consequences in a moral sense is also present. While the book is a kind of horror adventure story, the depictions of animals a little like humans and humans a little like animals hover in the thoughts much longer. (found on my shelves, maybe from a book sale?)

Hide the Children: A Story of Saint Bernard of Clairvaux by Brother Roberto, C.S.C. - link to my post (purchased new)

Emil and the Detectives by Erich Kastner - link to my post (received from a member at PaperBackSwap.com)

The Last Wish: Introducing the Witcher by Andrzej Sapkowski - This is a fantasy book of short stories by a Polish author. It's for mature audiences and involves plenty of magic, but I thought it was fun. (library copy)

Report from Calabria by A Priest - link to my post (library copy)



Books in Progress (and date started)
The italic print: Links to Amazon are affiliate links. As an affiliate with Amazon, I receive a small commission if you follow one of my links, add something to your cart, and complete the purchase (in that order). Links to RC History and PaperBackSwap.com are also affiliate links to their respective stores. Other links (like those to Bethlehem Books) are not affiliate links.

These reports are my honest opinions.

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