Excellent stuff. As I've said before in my updates for this book- Paretsky has an uncanny ability to to make the current and topical into something bo...moreExcellent stuff. As I've said before in my updates for this book- Paretsky has an uncanny ability to to make the current and topical into something both profoundly personal and at the same time exciting and unexpected.(less)
I liked this better than his Spencer books! Too bad there's only 3 in this series. Being an Arizona native I tried for years to get into Western novel...moreI liked this better than his Spencer books! Too bad there's only 3 in this series. Being an Arizona native I tried for years to get into Western novels. I tried Louis L'Amour, didn't care for it. Figured Zane Grey had that Arizona connection, didn't do it for me. I even tried Tony Hillerman for something more contemporary, just didn't seem to click for me. But Resolution was a blast. Shallow? Predictable? Male, macho, misogynist? Maybe, sorta, sometimes, but you know what? I loved it. Tight, direct, just enough humor, plenty of action, characters that are introspective and reflective but not neurotic and who care about each other and looking out for the little-guy.
The perfect summer escape for any grown up who used to be a little kid who wanted to grow up to be a cowboy.(less)
I hope they make it into a movie, because even if you don't think it's on par with 1984 it's at least on par with Dr. Strangelove and Woody Allen's Sl...moreI hope they make it into a movie, because even if you don't think it's on par with 1984 it's at least on par with Dr. Strangelove and Woody Allen's Sleeper- and more recently, Idiocracy. Brooks shows us how we get the government we deserve. Unlike the paranoid Manchurian Candidate, 2030 makes it pretty clear that more often than not, we unwittingly and enthusiastically invite our alien overlords to take charge. (less)
Haven't read this since college. I remember it unfolding like a detective novel, made up of Johnathan and Nina Harker's letters and diaries. I liked i...moreHaven't read this since college. I remember it unfolding like a detective novel, made up of Johnathan and Nina Harker's letters and diaries. I liked it. Reading through it helped me stop having vampire dreams whenever I was under a lot of stress.
So the other night Francis Ford Coppola's 1992 film "Brahm Stoker's Dracula" was on TV and I was frankly rather annoyed with it. It seems like Coppola was trying to suck up to Ann Rice readers. The historical Vlad Dracul was a freakishly violent fiend and Stoker's character was an unfeeling, selfish, insatiable beast- in short, a "monster." Coppola tried to make him a sympathetic romantic. I was appalled to find that Nina and the vampire wound up together in a wedding chapel, no less.
So today, browsing through a book store I picked up the book and re-read the last few pages, just to remind myself that Stoker wasn't such a sell-out as Coppola. I was relieved to read a much more satisfying (hope that's not a spoiler) conclusion. One that reaffirmed my faith in morality and humanity, not to mention true love as opposed to just sex and violence. (less)
I hate to finish such a great book. Kudos to Kilgore Trout on another masterpiece. Great lesson in history & economics, and in Christianity, for...more
I hate to finish such a great book. Kudos to Kilgore Trout on another masterpiece. Great lesson in history & economics, and in Christianity, for that matter (ironically from a humanist, as usual).(less)
You have to have a taste for this stuff- simultaneously surreal, philosophical, and full of irony and pulp/pop cultural references. It was a nice brea...moreYou have to have a taste for this stuff- simultaneously surreal, philosophical, and full of irony and pulp/pop cultural references. It was a nice break from the religious and political stuff I'd been reading.(less)
This was a fun, fanciful read that really helps you get to know and care about the characters better than the movie. It's an easy read (go figure, it'...moreThis was a fun, fanciful read that really helps you get to know and care about the characters better than the movie. It's an easy read (go figure, it's a children's book). I enjoyed reading it myself so much that I decided to start reading it as a bedtime story to my 6 and 9 year old daughters, and they're loving it too! There are a lot more adventures and the friends encounter more strange creatures than in the movie. Of course, the witches are also a lot more vulnerable and Dorothy is much less musical than in the film too.
Simple, sweet and American classic that it is- legend has it that it is a political allegory of the gilded age. I'm not sure how well it stacks up to other satires like Dante's Divine Comedy or Voltaire's Candide, but as a former high school American History teacher, I did a little digging around and this is what I found.
Midwestern farmers (The Scarecrow)
Urban industrial workers (the Tin-man)
William Jennings Bryan, populist presidential candidate (the Cowardly Lion), although some theories say that the lion represents the organized Church and religious leaders.
Yellow brick road (the gold standard), in spite of what Glenn Beck and Tea-Baggers think these days, Baum apparently thought of it as a road to nowhere.
Emerald City (Either paper money & finance, or perhaps Washington DC)
Wizard of Oz (the President) OR... Oz is an abbreviation for gold, which was a hot political topic with people rallying for a fixed ratio of silver and gold, OR... Mark Hanna, the chairman of the Republican party at the time.
Dorothy, the symbol of Everyman, us, U.S. (Although, another theory is that she represents Theodore Roosevelt, the United States president. Some people believe this theory more than the other because of the similarities in the names: Dor-o-thy and The-o-dore.
Silver shoes (the proposed system of basing backing the Dollar at least partly with silver, popular with Western miners and farmers)
Wicked Witch of the East symbolizes the large industrial corporations and eastern finance. But some think of the Witch of the West as the Railroad Barons, but others say she is William McKinley who ran against William Jennings Bryan and won.
Good Witch of the North is thought to represent the workers of the north, whereas the Good Witch of the South is thought to represent the farmers of the south. This contrasts the wicked industrialists of the east and the railroad moguls of the west.
Uncle Henry: In the late 1800's, there was a famous farmer who was the editor of a leading farm magazine. His name was Henry Cantwell Wallace, and everyone called him Uncle Henry.
The flying monkeys represent Native Americans.
The basic moral seems to be that the "powers-that-be" can only remain in power through deception- our ignorance and "red-neck-hood" allow the powerful to manipulate and control us.(less)