Interesting collection, I was really impressed and swooned by Achilles in one of these plays, he came across as a mega hero stud. I also thought the BInteresting collection, I was really impressed and swooned by Achilles in one of these plays, he came across as a mega hero stud. I also thought the Bacchae itself was very playful. These were wonderful though tragic. ...more
This was such a good subject matter, mirror neurons are so interesting! Too bad the author was completely self obsessed, and in a very irritating way.This was such a good subject matter, mirror neurons are so interesting! Too bad the author was completely self obsessed, and in a very irritating way. I really couldn't get past the authors writing with this one, though I think some of the points he was making were highly fascinating, especially exploring mirroring behavior with autism and his ideas about how these neurons might affect free will. ...more
It's hard not to want to rate something like this very high as the fact that we even have any of this preserved is absolutely amazing. Much of this woIt's hard not to want to rate something like this very high as the fact that we even have any of this preserved is absolutely amazing. Much of this work is fragmented but the information given at the start of each book really helps you know where it came from and what is known about the text. Interesting to note that Gilgamesh is mentioned in one of the works. Its amazing what history/tradition gets carried into each age. I think reading something like this makes you wonder exactly what made each part of the bible as it is currently presented "from god" and to be followed to the letter while works like this that were cut and pasted from the past are ignored. What and who decides what is Cannon? It seems fairly arbitrary when you take into account the vast number of texts that there would have been to draw from. This compilation is a real treasure and made for a very interesting read. ...more
I think it would be hard to review a book like this and not launch into a dialogue about the so called "Utopia" put forth by Raphael in this book. I sI think it would be hard to review a book like this and not launch into a dialogue about the so called "Utopia" put forth by Raphael in this book. I suppose this says a lot for perhaps what the morals or standards of the day were at this time that this sort of life would be considered desirable. I think one of the main aims of all human life is to avoid pain and we forget to realize that in this time period in history people would have been experiencing a lot of physical pain with no way to alleviate it, in addition to physical pain, the onslaught of wars, and starvation would have led anyone to consider a working class system where these things were eliminated their own vision of utopia. As someone who grew up with relatively much, I think I and many other readers of this generation not living in third world abject poverty may feel that Thoma More reached a little to low to the stars when deciding on a Utopia. We also value things like creativity, free thinking and place high emphasis on eccentricities and highly skilled individuals which this sort of community environment would not foster. In addition because of its brevity perhaps it has a lot of gaps and loopholes and "what if" scenarios that your mind can't help but come up wit throughout the text. Perhaps we should expect less from life. Perhaps we really should try to enjoy the simple pleasures but its hardly what I would desire on a personal level. ...more
This was really fun. I especially enjoyed the information relating to the "experiencing self" and the self seen in memory. Also the plethora of gambliThis was really fun. I especially enjoyed the information relating to the "experiencing self" and the self seen in memory. Also the plethora of gambling examples is always fun. Interesting bit there about people with colostomy's there at the end. I actually just acquired an illeostomy myself and can sympathize with the sentiment. ...more
As it is difficult to find a book that covers the reigns of so many great pharaohs and the history of Egypt in such a short read its hard not to appreAs it is difficult to find a book that covers the reigns of so many great pharaohs and the history of Egypt in such a short read its hard not to appreciate what the author did here as she covered a great deal of ground in a rather logical format for a set of history that is so highly controversial. Unfortunately I did not enjoy her constant insertion of unnecessary opinions on various historically debated topics in this work. I wish she would have left the gossipy, somewhat personal "asides" out of it. A lot of the basic content of this is really good. ...more
The thing about any sequel to a book is that for someone to pick up the second book generally they would have had to have read and liked the first oneThe thing about any sequel to a book is that for someone to pick up the second book generally they would have had to have read and liked the first one enough to do so. Having said that I think it bears some weight on the overall rating for this book. Although I didn't really appreciate/understand the sexual exploits of our young hero in this one. It does seem wildly unbelievable that someone his age with his "awkwardness with women" would be able to have so many encounters? I think this runs almost counter to what the author set the character up to be like. In additions I agree with some of the other comments that the overall theme for these books seems to be lacking (as in no discernible overall plot) though I can't say this bothers me for some reason as the journey itself is still enjoyable. What happens is really fun even if it is a bit wordy. I will be reading the third....more
This is not a creationist book, and I appreciate that. Le Faunu took a lot of time going through evolution piece by piece and taking a very realisticThis is not a creationist book, and I appreciate that. Le Faunu took a lot of time going through evolution piece by piece and taking a very realistic look at what he felt was known so far (he did miss a few things but we will let that slide for the time being), and given what information he had, he basically built a defense against a wholesale acceptance of Evolution. This is fine, and I think he did this fairly well. What I did not appreciate was two things. First of all as with EVERYONE who has something to say against evolution he proposes NOTHING in its place. How is this helpful? Pray tell, what do you have better? You can't just fall back on a sky god and some nonsense and expect people to buy into this anymore, we are over it, we want answers. Please if you see flaws with evolution on a macro scale (he has no problem with micro scale evolution) by all means propose something. Oh wait you can't you can just complain about what is unknown, sorry but no thanks for your useless input. The second problem I have with this book is that he makes it out as if scientists have lost the ability to see the beauty of nature and the "complexity" as he calls it of life around us. That scientists have tried to hammer down everything into answers and forgotten to look at and appreciate the world around them. I am no scientist but I feel that is completely untrue. Many of the greatest minds in science fell into this field simply because of the beauty and majesty they felt from nature. Scientists make great poets too! And he spends a section acknowledging Rachel Carsons love of the sea and the world around her and then turns around and says this is not generally true of scientists? What does that have to do with anything! That is false! Scientists are lovers of this world too, in some ways more than many people and have devoted their life to things of this planet and beyond. Just because they want answers doesn't mean they have lost the ability to see the beauty around them. I don't need a bible to appreciate a walk through the woods thank you and I am sure neither does Rachel Carson. How rude. ...more
This was kind of all over the place, the authors style was very unique to be sure and even sort of refreshing in a way because it was so different. BuThis was kind of all over the place, the authors style was very unique to be sure and even sort of refreshing in a way because it was so different. But I worry most of this "differentness" was defined too much by its outright tawdriness to be enjoyable. It wasn't even sexy tawdry it was just sort of raunchyily indigestible and random. Some of it felt like a Chinese dream, it made me want to drink tea and eat moogoogaipan. ...more
I am giving this book four stars for Brans chapter alone, it was well written, moving and absolutely worth the whole rest of the slog. What an interesI am giving this book four stars for Brans chapter alone, it was well written, moving and absolutely worth the whole rest of the slog. What an interesting way for his life to turn! This was especially moving for a young man as a cripple to find a way to interact in the world in such an interesting manner. Instead of regaining what was lost he gains a completely new skill set which I found so absorbing. I think Martin is such a talented writer, and some of his appeal as a writer is is his ability to intricately weave so many different characters and make such an epic tale. I just feel like these books are getting to be a bit too epic in that way. Mostly I feel like he is getting off track and running away from the heart of the story. There are so many players and so much going on that the really good "meat" of the storyline is lost sometimes in all this. I hope he recaptures that a little bit with his next book. ...more
Interesting character this Zorba. An older fairly eccentric jolly sort of fellow that sees life I think in a much different manner than those around hInteresting character this Zorba. An older fairly eccentric jolly sort of fellow that sees life I think in a much different manner than those around him and even perhaps the reader. ...more
If anyone has been wondering why I haven't posted on goodreads in three weeks you can pretty much blame this book. About three pages into it I realizeIf anyone has been wondering why I haven't posted on goodreads in three weeks you can pretty much blame this book. About three pages into it I realized that this was not one I was going to be able to fly through and actually follow. The book is kind of dropped into the setting of WW2, and by that I mean it sort of floats into/on top of this setting in a fairly lucid way. The book features a ramshackle of verses and prose and what could be termed as songs if only we knew the melody. Though we could at least conjecture that the melody would be dark and highly cynically humorous. Many of the passages are funny, many are just touching at funny, and there are a good number of passages that that humor is irritating and grating in a way that makes you laugh while hating them. Slothtrops character seems to undergo the most change/experiences throughout the work. The drug induced haze that blankets the middle of this book lends to a surprising amount of characters and sub plots. The ending was actually kind of fabulous, the completion of the rocket metaphor well grounded. Yet I still hate this book. I really do. The whole "post modern" thing really isn't my scene. Frankly I don't like post modern art in general, and if this is considered post modern literature I say dump it. It's not that I don't "get it" its more that I get it and am repulsed. Then you say well that was the point! You were supposed to feel repulsed and jaded and "human" as they call it.
To this I say: When did our idea of humanity become so twisted? When did pornographic, phallic, masturbatory, pedophilia become acceptable? Why should I want to read something that touches on the absolute basest forms of living as a human? So drawn by the whims of the world. So disenchanted. So detached from actual human experience? This book simply leaches on our most carnal natures and sets it on a pedestal to say, hey look at death. Lets mock it! Lets find every way possible to entwine the idea of death with some twisted sexual fantasy. To this you reply that it is better than being an automaton. At least we can FEEL something in this world Pynchon has created. It's better than eeking out our existence by setting one foot towards work and the other towards home without ever actually experiencing anything.
To this I add: Why do we need drugs to experience something real? Why do we have to enhance or chemically boost our bodies to some ridiculous extreme to FEEL. Why is it only poignant when someone dies? We have truly become less if this is what we need to experience more.
I hate this book. I really do. The writing is deranged yet fabulous. But the content is gross. You want me to understand the baseness of humanity? You want me to understand the cruelty and perversity of this world? You want me to feel what its like to be in the mind of people who only take from society and kill because their hearts are shallow? Because why? Because this book is part of pop culture? Because it is frequently referenced? Because it is a modern "Classic"? Bullshit. I am sorry there is too much swearing in this book already and I am adding to it. There are too many bad images, too many things you don't want to see and don't want to know about what people think. The truth of the matter is I know this is how people can be. I know this is how humans can act, think,and perceive the world. I frankly choose a different world. I chose a humanity that looks death straight in the face, instead of glancing at it from the side. I choose a humanity that builds up instead of bombing the shit out of everything. I chose a humanity that cares about freaking humanity. That loves, gives, and actually does something with itself. I chose to dump the selfish egotistical nostalgic nonsense that we have created and look for something more out of life. I chose to hate this book, and the fact that I can chose is in my mind at least a small part of what it means to be human....more