Book Title: The Magus
Author: John Fowles
My rating of the book, F- [worst] to A [best]: A+
Short description/summary of the book: "This daring literary thriller, rich with eroticism and suspense, is one of John Fowles's best-loved and bestselling novels and has conributed significantly to his international reputation as a writer of the first rank. At the center of The Magus is Nicholas Urfe, a young Englishman who accepts a teaching position on a remote Greek island, where he befriends a local millionaire. The friendship soon evolves into a deadly game in which reality and fantasy are deliberately manipulated, and Nicholas finds that he must fight not only for his sanity but for his very survival."
My thoughts: This is far and away one of the most incredibly rich and powerful novels I have ever had the pleasure of reading in my life! It is suspenseful, intriguing, brilliant, mysterious and very thought-provoking. This book is like a long labyrinth, with twists and turns at the most unexpected times. It is more like four stories in one, as nothing can be taken for granted and everything is questioned. Mythology, theosophy, philosophy, psychology, romance, adventure, betrayal, and even "murder most foul" come into play as with baited breath you turn each thought-provoking page. I believe Eliot Fremont-Smith from The New York Times said it best with his comment, '...Read it in one sitting if possible - but read it."
Currently Reading: King Henry V by William Shakespeare, Love In the Time of Cholera by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
Book Title:The Gunslinger: The Dark Tower I
Author: Stephen King
# of pages: 300
Pages read this year: 2178/15000 (14.5%)
My rating of the book, F- [worst] to A [best].: A
Short description/summary of the book: This book is so complex, so I will post the amazon.com review...Thirty-three years, a horrific and life-altering accident, and thousands of desperately rabid fans in the making, Stephen King's quest to complete his magnum opus rivals the quest of Roland and his band of gunslingers who inhabit the Dark Tower series. Loyal DT fans and new readers alike will appreciate this revised edition of The Gunslinger, which breathes new life into Roland of Gilead, and offers readers a "clearer start and slightly easier entry into Roland's world."
King writes both a new introduction and foreword to this revised edition, and the ever-patient, ever-loyal "constant reader" is rewarded with secrets to the series's inception. That a "magic" ream of green paper and a Robert Browning poem, came together to reveal to King his "ka" is no real surprise (this is King after all), but who would have thought that the squinty-eyed trio of Clint Eastwood, Lee Van Cleef, and Eli Wallach would set the author on his true path to the Tower? While King credits Tolkien for inspiring the "quest and magic" that pervades the series, it was Sergio Leone's The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly that helped create the epic proportions and "almost absurdly majestic western backdrop" of Roland's world...
My thoughts: When I finished this book, I said "WOW!" It is such an intruiging read! It is filled with murder, mystery, fantasy, and religion! I felt that this book was fast-paced, but a bit confusing at times. I have been told to read the rest of the books and then all of my questions will be answered. I cannot wait to read the other six books!
( MAJOR SPOILERS!!!Collapse )
Currently Reading: I am about to start Lemony Snicket's ASoUE Book #3: The Wide Window and I am going to finish up Interview with a Vampire eventually...
X-posted to my book community, book_it_2006 and a whole lot of other places! ;P
Book Title: 1984
Author: George Orwell
My rating of the book, F- [worst] to A [best]: A
Short description/summary of the book: "1984 has come and gone, but George Orwell's prophetic, nightmarish vision in 1949 of the world we were becoming is timelier than ever. 1984 is still the great modern classic of "Negative Utopia" - a startlingly original and haunting novel that creates an imaginary world that is completely convincing, from the first sentence to the last four words. No one can deny this novel's power, its hold on the imaginations of whole generations, or the power of its admonitions - a power that seems to grow, not lessen, with the passage of time."
My thoughts: wow. now more than ever, 1984 and "Big Brother" have a powerful and most important impact on the world today. what a wake-up call: this is a timely warning for us all, if you don't think the political arena could make this possible for the future, think again. or better yet, read the book (again, if you have already read it) and then see the similarities in the way our country is run and the things that might occur. scary but true!
Currently Reading: The Magus by John Fowles and King Henry V by William Shakespeare
Book Title: The Eyre Affair
Author: Jasper Fforde
My rating of the book, F- [worst] to A [best]: A
Short description/summary of the book: "Welcome to a surreal version of Great Britain, circa 1985, where time travel is routine, cloning is a reality (dodos are the resurrected pet of choice), and literature is taken very, very seriously. England is a virtual police state where an aunt can get lost (literally) in a Wordsworth poem, militant Baconians heckle performances of Hamlet, and forging Byronic verse is a punishable offense. All this is business as usual for Thursday Next, renowned Special Operative in literary detection, until someone begins kidnapping characters from works of literature. When Jane Eyre is plucked from the pages of Bronte's novel, Thursday must track down the villain and enter the novel herself to avert a heinous act of literary homicide."
My thoughts: Now this was just pure serendipity, in all its enigmatic beauty. I started this book while i was re-reading Jane Eyre and now I'm reading King Richard III for my Shakespeare class!!! (The relevance may be lost on those of you who have not read this book.) "Strange things are afoot at the circle K". lol. Anyways, the beginning of this book kinda dragged for me. I found the description of the War etc. a bit dull, but once I got past that part I loved this book! Thursday is a real marvel of a heroine and I loved the parts with Jane Eyre and Mr. Rochester. Above all, this book has an intriguing plot and very believable characters. I recommend it wholeheartedly and will soon be reading the next in the series, "Lost in a Good Book".
Currently Reading: King Richard III by William Shakespeare
Here's my list of books that i'm studying at school this semester, if anyone's interested:
The Catcher in the Rye, by J.D. Salinger (Already read this on my own twice, but i'll be reading it again to refresh my memory.)
Rabbit is Rich, by John Updike (haven't read much of his work, but looking forward to the opportunity.)
Slaughterhouse-Five, by Kurt Vonnegut (was supposed to have read this in high school and couldn't get through it...better luck now?)
The Things They Carried, by Tim O'Brien (My friend Alyssa's favorite book and one I've been dying to read.)
A Hole in the Wind, by Carl Horner (Dr. Horner is my teacher and he is teaching his own book, which just recently got published. hm.)
I Lock My Door Upon Myself, by Joyce Carol Oates (never read anything by her)
The Color Purple, by Alice Walker (yet another that I should have read a long time ago but haven't yet.)
Also, besides the required reading above, we are to read one other book of our choice, and write an essay about it which we'll keep revising as the semester goes on....and the book I chose to read is:
The Fountainhead, by Ayn Rand. (Always wanted to read this book, now I have the perfect opportunity!)
I have during the holidays developed a sever addiction to 19th century horror after having read Dracula, Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde and The Picture of Dorian Gray. I have read Frankenstein too, but when I was about 13 or 14. Are there any left apart from those really? I just love them, they have a certain...je ne sais quoi...I love the random words and phrases that need explaining etc in the back and just little things like that.
I am going shopping tomorrow so would like replies asap :D
Thanks in advance :D
Book Title: Lady Chatterley's Lover
Author: D. H. Lawrence
My rating of the book, F- [worst] to A [best]: A-
Short description/summary of the book: A bored married woman, Constance Chatterley, is married to a crippled, austere, forbidding and cold WWI veteran. With all the material comforts that English gentry life can bring, she still has a growing unease and emptiness within her. So, as the title gives away, she takes a lover. It is the intimate, frank portrayal of Connie's extramarital affair and the couple's sexual explorations that caused this book to be banned as pornography.
My thoughts: I have embarked on a reading list of "banned books" or just books I should have been assigned to read in high school or college and never was. I thoroughly enjoyed this book and saw it as a frank portrayal of what it would have been like to have been an English married woman of the gentry class in that time period. I do not agree with the censorship of this book or the term they attached to it, "pornography". Although it does have sex and swearing in it, it was not nearly as seedy as it has been described. It is rather then: honest, truthful, endearing, poignant and highly intelligent. The first line of the book is one of my favorites, "Ours is essentially a tragic age, so we refuse to take it tragically".
Currently Reading: 1984 by george orwell, brideshead revisited by evelyn waugh
Full Title - "Dante"
Author - Cesare Marchi
Number of pages - 333
Personal rating - *****
Genre - biographic
Link - http://bur.rcslibri.corriere.it/scl
Quick Summary - As it is shown from the title, this a book entirely about Dante Aligheri. Life, personality, facts and legends, comments on "The Divine Comedy" - it has everything! You have to read it in order to appreciate it. It makes very good reference for Dante's life and work. It starts with facts about his family, how he grew up, then his teenage years, his love and what happened to it, then his maturity, how he was politically implied in the life of his city, the relationship with his family, his exile and his actions. It ends with a good commentary on his "Commedia". It is also a good reference on the Italian social, but especially political life during that epoch. An excellent read for the interested!
Book Title: Jarhead
Author: Anthony Swofford
# of pages: 360
Pages read this year: 360/15000 (2.4%)
My rating of the book, F- [worst] to A [best].: B+
Short description/summary of the book: When the U.S. Marines--or "jarheads"--were sent to Saudi Arabia in 1990 for the first Gulf War, Anthony Swofford was there. He lived in sand for six months, he was punished by boredom and fear, he considered suicide, pulled a gun on a fellow marine, and was targeted by both enemy and friendly fire. And as engagement with the Iraqis drew near, he was forced to consider what in means to be an American, a soldier, a son of a soldier, and a man.
My thoughts: Before reading Jarhead, I had never read a military book. I want to read more! I was intrigued by his honesty and bravery for fighting in the Gulf War. (I was so young when it happened the first time, that I really didn't understand a whole lot of what went on over there). I am glad to have gotten a good picture, and Swofford does a GREAT job by painting a picture of the situation going on with him and his fellow comrades in the war. I also LOVED the flash-backs and flash-forwards that Swofford did when he mentions his family, his friends, and himself growing up. The only complaint I had was that I got a little bit bored with the military jargon and explanations of the weapons. I know that is to give us a better understand of what they're doing, and what each weapon is, but it got to be too much description. Other than that, I really enjoyed the book, and cannot wait to see Jake Gyllenhaal's portrayal of Swofford when the movie comes out on DVD.
Currently Reading: I have no idea what book I want to start now, but I am sure I will be posting about it in my own personal journal once I start it! ;P
**x-posted to my book community book_it_2006**
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