So I started Kite Runner two nights ago after finishing Blink. It took me a week or so with Blink since I wasn’t very enthralled, making it easier to...moreSo I started Kite Runner two nights ago after finishing Blink. It took me a week or so with Blink since I wasn’t very enthralled, making it easier to put it down at night when it was my bed time.
Kite Runner, I started over a long weekend and could not for the life of me put it down. I was so hooked I even found myself reading Bing’s copy when I was over at Deesh and Bing’s this weekend playing an invigorating (and might I add victorious) game of girls vs. boys Cranium and then Cheez Geek (Cheez Geek one of the 3 new things this week).
The Kite Runner. Must be the most disturbing, haunting book I’ve yet to read. The close seconds would be A Child Called It and Night. They both broke my heart but not in the way Kite Runner did. I was in tears maybe four separate times during the past two days it took me to finish the novel. A coming of age story with pre–war Afganhistan and the post-Taliban arrival as the backdrop of the story.
I tend to take note of books I know my dad will enjoy and as I read them I jot down notes on post its for my dad and flag the relevant pages. I flagged the story about Amir and Hassen tying bumble bees with string and letting them fly a bit before yanking them back. My dad used to do exactly the same thing to dragonflies when he was younger growing up in Vietnam. Then as I got deeper and deeper into the book and found myself tearing up, I started to doubt whether my dad, a vet would enjoy going down memory lane. I took breaks and called Mary Ellen to relay the story and basically to pull me out a little. Relief.
The refugee stories seem to make vivid my parents’ stories post Vietnam.
I kept imagining I was reading about my dad. Funny how war is pretty much the same no matter where it is. I usually don’t read war books so this is somewhat new to me. Before Kite Runner, the only books I’ve read with war in the background were Anne Frank’s diary, The Hiding Place, and Night. All heart breaking in their own respect but I never felt so invested in events unfolding with each turn of the page as I did with Kite Runner.
So aside from making me cry so easily, Hosseini also managed to make me laugh several times out loud. One scene when Amir, in such a detached manner, thinks to himself as someone is experiencing an eye injury, “Oh that’s vitreous fluid.. I read about that, that’s vitreous fluid.” I used to work for an ophthalmologist.
So here are a few quotes I jotted down into my reading journal…
“There is only one sin, only one. And that is theft. Every other sin is a variation of theft..”
“If there’s a God out there, then I would hope he has more important things to attend to than my drinking Scotch or eating pork.”
“Children aren’t coloring books. You don’t get to fill them with your favorite colors.”
“We plucked the stinger off a bee and tied a string around the poor thing and yanked it back every time it took flight.”
“John Wayne didn’t really speak Farsi and he wasn’t Iranian.”
“And the beggars were mostly children now, thin and grim-faced, some no older than five or six. They sat in the laps of their burque-clad mothers alongside gutters at busy street corners… Hardly any of them sat with an adult male- the war had made fathers a rare commodity in Afghanistan.”
“Returning to Kabul was like running into an old, forgotten friend, and seeing that life hadn’t been good to him, that he’d become homeless and destitute.”
‘I’m so afraid…. Because I’m so profoundly happy, Dr Rasul. Happiness like this is frightening. They only let you be this happy if they’re preparing to take something from you.”
I wrote the last one down because that’s how I feel when I feel very happy. I get extra wary of freak accidents.
“I wondered if that was how forgiveness budded, not with the fanfare of epiphany, but with pain gathering its things, packing up and slipping away unannounced in t(less)
Took me a while to get through this book. Again, I'm bored by Gladwell (this is my second experience with him). I admit I got a few things from Blink...moreTook me a while to get through this book. Again, I'm bored by Gladwell (this is my second experience with him). I admit I got a few things from Blink and a handful of things from Tipping Point but I just did not get the hype. Perhaps it was talked up too much for me. I was expecting to be capitivated. Blah blah. I definitely enjoyed Freakonomics better than Tipping Point. I liked to try to place the people I knew into either Mavens, Salesmen, or Connectors. I'm drawing a blank on further thoughts about the book. I finished it sometime last week.
“Women have no appreciation of good looks; at least, good women have not.”
“We are punished for our refusals. Every impulse that we strive to strangle...more“Women have no appreciation of good looks; at least, good women have not.”
“We are punished for our refusals. Every impulse that we strive to strangle broods in the mind, and poisons us. The body sins once, and has done with its sin, for action is a mode of purification. Nothing remains then but the recollection of a pleasure, or the luxury of a regret. The only way to get rid of temptation is to yield to it. Resist it, and your soul grows sick with longing for the things. It has forbidden to itself, with desire for what is monstrous laws have made monstrous and unlawful.”
“Men marry because they are tired; women, because they are curious. Both are disappointed.”
“Women are a decorative sex. They never have anything to say, but they say it charmingly. Women represent the triumph of matter over mind, just as men represent the triumph of mind over morals.”
“When one is in love, one always begins by deceiving one’s self, and one always ends by deceiving others.”
“He was a most offensive brute, though he had an extraordinary passion for Shakespeare.”
“One could never pay too high a price for any sensation.”
“There is a luxury in self-reproach. When we blame ourselves we feel that no one else has a right to blame us. It is the confession, not the priest, that gives us absolution.”
“It is only shallow people who require years to get rid of an emotion. A man who is master of himself can end a sorrow as easily as he can invent a pleasure. I don’t want to be at the mercy of my emotions. I want to use them, to enjoy them, and to dominate them.”
“It often seems to me that art conceals the artist far more completely than it ever reveals him”
“A man can be happy with any woman as long as he does not love her.”
*************************************** “Each time one loves is the only time one has ever loved. Difference of object does not alter singleness of passion. It merely intensifies it. We can have in life but one great experience at best, and the secret of life is to reproduce that experience as often as possible.”
“Even when one has been wounded by it?”
“Especially when one has been wounded by it.” *******************************************(less)
Will keeps telling me he reads this book twice a year. Then I see it on Kym's bookshelf so I thought I'd give it a chance. It only took me over a year...moreWill keeps telling me he reads this book twice a year. Then I see it on Kym's bookshelf so I thought I'd give it a chance. It only took me over a year to finish this little book. I don't know why I resisted it so much. Ultimately, it's a good refresher on the human condition/tact: we like to feel appreciated/do not like feeling inadequate (even if we are), we do not like to be told what to do, etc)
Lots of good examples per each principle including plenty of historical examples of good and bad leadership.
I just knew Steve Martin would have a quiet, gentle, simple grasp on prose. Something about his persona.. odd since I know he's usually slapstick humo...moreI just knew Steve Martin would have a quiet, gentle, simple grasp on prose. Something about his persona.. odd since I know he's usually slapstick humorist.. but I just had a notion.
He met and exceeded my expectations of him :)
I rented the movie after reading the book. He wrote the screen play for it too and it was very nicely adapted.
Charming. Quaint. Heart-breaking in the quiet lonely way. Slightly uplifting. Slightly comforting.
Reread this after 9 years to see if I still love it. I still love it.
First recorded in GoodReads as read on 9/1/2005: Great book on love. Especially f...moreReread this after 9 years to see if I still love it. I still love it.
First recorded in GoodReads as read on 9/1/2005: Great book on love. Especially for philosophy majors. They would definitely appreciate all the references/it would cater to the egoist in them.
So, I loved this book because not only did it appeal to the philosophy major in me but also the cynic in me.. which just so happens to be a big part of me. At the very end it does have a slight uplift that would soften the cynic a little.. and all cynics need to work on softening up even if it's just a little once in a while.
The ending also reminded me of the Egg anecdote at the end of Woody Allen's Annie Hall. (less)
Some excerpts. I finished it in 2 days in February 2006. Easy read.
"Life is clearest when guided by ulterior motives....moreFemale modern version of Holden.
Some excerpts. I finished it in 2 days in February 2006. Easy read.
"Life is clearest when guided by ulterior motives."
"It was my observation that beautiful and popular people rarely spent time alone."
"... I felt ashamed. But my shame, being the largest and truest of my emotions, required the least attention; it was a rock in my gut and remained with me.
No. It was relief that was most immediate. At the time in my life- no conclusion was a bad conclusion. Something ended, and you stopped wishing and worrying. You could consider your mistakes, and you might be embarrassed by them, but the box was sealed, the door shut, you were no longer immersed in the confusing middle."
"None of which justifies how I acted. I was wrong. I screwed up - how else can I say it? But there was plenty I learned from Dave. Later, after all that happened between Cross Sugarman and me, I even saw Dave as practice for Cross, as preparation. He made me ready, as Conchita had once made me ready for a friendship with Martha; there are people we treat wrong, and later we're prepared to treat other people right. Perhaps this sounds mercenary but I feel grateful for these trial relationships, and I would like to think it all evens out. Surely, unknowingly, I have served as practice for other people."
" I heard Gillian say, with a laugh, 'At this point, does anyone expect the liberals not to be total hypocrites?' She was oblivious to the possibility that perhaps not everyone present shared her views and I thought, You're sixteen, how can you already be Republican?"
"'But are you a Democrat or a Republican?' Jonathan said, 'I'm socially progressive but fiscally conservative.' and Doug Miles, a football player who also came to Sunday breakfast but only ever read the sports section and ignored everyone, lifted his head and said, 'Is that like being bisexual?' Which I actually thought was funny, even though I was pretty sure Doug was a jerk."
"You only ever try to pin a person down because they are not yours, because you can't."
"I already recognized, even then, the sadness of another person lying on top of you. They will always leave (what's someone going to do, just lie there forever?) and that's the sad part. You can always feel the imminent loss."
"You feel what you feel, you act as you act; who in the history of the world has ever been convinced by a well-reasoned argument." (less)