I truly don't think that I can express how much I loved this book. The first part of a trilogy, TNotW is told in first person by Kvothe, by turns a tr...moreI truly don't think that I can express how much I loved this book. The first part of a trilogy, TNotW is told in first person by Kvothe, by turns a trouper, street urchin, arcanist, luter and grudging savior (not to mention the things that are alluded to in this book but wont actually transpire until the next two).
I am a relatively recent convert to fantasy fiction, with most of my prior reading lying firmly in the paranormal genre instead of more traditional fantasy - but this has won me over. The characters are so fully developed. Rothfuss has truly created his own world, with its own logic and magical rules. It makes so much sense that I almost believe that it is real, because SHOULDNT you be able to put x and y together and get z??
I know I am late to the game on this one, but I am chomping at the bit for the 2nd book to come out (May 2010). Cannot wait. (less)
Really just not my style. I read this for my RL book club. I have not read On The Road and generally found that I am left bored and non-plussed by exi...moreReally just not my style. I read this for my RL book club. I have not read On The Road and generally found that I am left bored and non-plussed by existential, philosophical literature. I would not have fit into the Beat Generation and am frankly quite attached to my creature comforts.
I'm sure if you are into this style of literature that you will enjoy this book. Just not my cup of tea. (less)
I thought the book was a lot of fun. I read the version that had Buttercup's Baby at the back of it, which was just weird. Not sure that that should h...moreI thought the book was a lot of fun. I read the version that had Buttercup's Baby at the back of it, which was just weird. Not sure that that should have really been included - but I did enjoy the whole Stephen King bit.
I definitely loved the movie better. I think some of the dialogue was just a little sharper and wittier - and the delivery was just amazing. I couldnt help but picture the movie characters as I was reading the book.
This was cute. I had obviously heard the whole story before, so there were no surprises, but it was nice to hear it in the actual words that Dickens w...moreThis was cute. I had obviously heard the whole story before, so there were no surprises, but it was nice to hear it in the actual words that Dickens wrote. (less)
Speciman days was not really a novel per se, but more like three linked novellas. The three stories were all set in different time periods: The Indust...moreSpeciman days was not really a novel per se, but more like three linked novellas. The three stories were all set in different time periods: The Industrial Revolution, Present Day New York, 2150 New York. Each story loosely involved three characters named some derivation of Simon, Catherine and Lucas. There was a bowl of some sort that was passed between all of the stories (symbolism of this remains unclear). And then there was Walt Whitman.
In the first story, about a poverty stricken family where the oldest son has been killed (Simon) and the youngest son (11-year old Lucas) must go to work to support his disabled Father, distraught mother and sort of his brother’s fiancee’ widow. Lucas has some sort of problem where he constantly speaks in poetry. Specifically, Walt Whitman poetry. Whitman makes a cameo.
The second story, involves a NYPD call-center psychiatrist who’s job is to answer terrorist phone calls and she hears about a terrorist plot perpetrated by a series of children. Children who keep quoting Whitman. More Whitman references as the plot develops. The context is pseudo-present NYC, however it is in some sort of alternate world where terrorism is much more prevalent than today. Where this is such an all-consuming factor that it almost appears post-apocalyptic.
In the last story, Cunningham was clearly taking some happy pills. It is the story of a Cyborg (Simon) who rescues an alien lizard (Katreen) from persecution for lying to the robot-police and they take off on a cross-country race to Denver to meet up with the cyborg maker before he takes off on his spaceship to colonize another planet, picking up a disenchanted boy missionary with a freakish head (Luke) and dragging him along. Very strange.
I really didn’t get this book at all. Each one was difficult in its own way and I struggled with the writing style. I feel like I almost would have like the last one the best, but was unable to really appreciate it juxtaposed as it was to the other two stories. I am sure I should be pulling some deep meaning from the title “Speciman Days” as they all take place on the same day of the year (June 23 if I remember correctly) but each 150ish years apart.
Blah. I refuse to try to overanalyze this one.
If someone liked it, please tell me why. If forced to choose which I liked best, I would probably go with the middle one, though the ending pissed me off.
I have read a decent amount of WWII fiction and a marginal amount of non-fiction and memoirs. For the most part, they have been war/fighting based or...moreI have read a decent amount of WWII fiction and a marginal amount of non-fiction and memoirs. For the most part, they have been war/fighting based or centered on a concentration camp victim. I think this is the first time I have ever read about the Nazi labor camps as opposed to the concentration camps.
Reading this true story, even this long after WWII, was both enlightening and heartbreaking. Agnes Humbert tells her story as she helps lead one of France's first resistance newspapers and the subsequent trials she goes through as she is arrested and detained first in French camps and then later in German labor camps. The suffering she and other political (and criminal) prisoners went through was unimaginable. And yet through it all, she maintained an admirable sense of humor and lightheartedness that both made it easier to stomach her tale and served to ensure that her and her companions were able to survive to see the next morning.
I definitely recommend this read, especially to WWII enthusiasts and people who are interested in reading a truly inspirational story from a real life patriot and hero. (less)
So this was my first Joyce. I was a little intimidated so when I found this copy for $2.00 at B&N, I snatched it up. Its a collection of short sto...moreSo this was my first Joyce. I was a little intimidated so when I found this copy for $2.00 at B&N, I snatched it up. Its a collection of short stories about different people that live in Dublin. Right off the bat, that is a bad sign for me. I honestly can't think of a book of short stories that I have liked. I just don't get into them.
That aside though, I liked the first story and was mildly looking forward to the rest. Unfortunately, that waned pretty quickly. For such a short book, this took me an ETERNITY to read.
Most stories were only 5-7 pages, but the last two were a bit longer. By the end, I was just skimming to get done. Really not my favorite, but I don't know if that was a result of the short stories, or a result of Joyce himself.
Hopefully someday I will read Portrait, but at after Dubliners, have no real aspirations of moving on to Ulysses or Finnegans.
This was really excellent and I totally understand why it won the Man Booker prize this year. The perspective that Hillary Mantel told the story of Th...moreThis was really excellent and I totally understand why it won the Man Booker prize this year. The perspective that Hillary Mantel told the story of Thomas Cromwell in was innovative and offered an insight into one of the most influential, least understood characters in 16th century England.
Up until this point, I had only read about Cromwell as being an extremely manipulative, extremely negative persona in the Tudor reign. Wolf Hall gave a sympathetic, alternative look at what drove Cromwell to act as he did and how he became the puppetmaster behind Henry VIII and his marriage to Anne Boleyn.
I highly recommend this, but warn you that it is a deep undertaking in order to absorb it properly.(less)