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Why do I love this book? I love it because of the villains. Not just the obviously villainous Paul Lazzaro--although he's one of the great villains of...more
not set
Mar 19, 2007
Dear Saul,
I'm afraid it's over. I can no longer have you on my favorite authors list.
(No, no let go of F. Scott's sleeve. You're only making this har...more
Jul 12, 2009
Mar 19, 2007
Bleak House
Finally finished it and it only took me four months [pats self on back, does a little victory dance and then weeps,] but I'm so glad I read it. This i...more
May 03, 2008
Mar 20, 2007
Breathing Out the Ghost
In a chapter called In nomine diaboli the protagonist, Colin St. Claire, says, "Somewhere along the line I began compiling myself from the excerpts of...more
Mar 30, 2009
Aug 18, 2008
The Power and the Glory
That was another mystery: it sometimes seemed to him that venial sins—impatience, an unimportant lie, pride, a neglected opportunity—cut off from grac...more
Jul 26, 2009
Jun 20, 2009
The Blind Assassin
Apparently with no surprise
To any happy Flower
The Frost beheads it at its play --
In accidental power --
The blonde Assassin passes on --
The Sun proceed...more
Aug 23, 2009
Feb 21, 2009
A Princess of Mars (Barsoom, #1)
This is the type of novel in which...

...characters show up outside rooms at the exact same time other characters are imparting information that it is...more
Jun 08, 2009
Sep 27, 2008
Nabokov, who spent his first twenty years in Czarist Russia and his next twenty in Germany and Paris before coming to America, is one of my favorite w...more
Jan 25, 2009
Jan 26, 2008
A Bend in the River
This is a lousy boring book. Naipaul seems very interested in telling us How The World Works, or at least how it works in Africa (he does know Africa...more
Apr 14, 2008
Mar 22, 2007
Of Human Bondage
Have you ever felt an author had stolen your thoughts and feelings and put them in a book? I felt that way through this entire book.
not set
Mar 13, 2007
Darkness at Noon
At the end of 1984 Winston Smith asks O'Brien why the party acts the way it does. His answer always pissed me off: "Power for power's sake." That's no...more
Apr 10, 2009
Jul 20, 2008
Think Fast, Mr. Moto
The weakness of this book: The protagonist is a bland Boston brahmin named Wilson Hitchings who uses his "intuition" to figure things out when the plo...more
Oct 05, 2008
Aug 20, 2008
A Confederacy of Dunces
This book was very funny, but that's pretty much all I can say about it, which is too bad because it could have been much more. Towards the end Ignati...more
Aug 24, 2008
Mar 12, 2008
Blood Meridian, or the Evening Redness in the West
This book hit me like an axe splitting open a skull all the way down to the scrapple--I don't know what a scrapple is, but I don't know what a lot of...more
Aug 2007
Mar 19, 2007
The Sirens of Titan
I hadn't read anything by Vonnegut in almost 15 years. I read most of his books in high school and then sort of moved on. I had forgotten what a geni...more
not set
May 04, 2007
Diamonds are Forever
This was much better than Live and Let Die. The sadism was more sadistic, the suspense more suspenseful, and there's a kick ass chase scene involving...more
Oct 10, 2008
Sep 08, 2008
The Silent Cry
This book reminds me of why I hate baseball. The action doesn't start until the batter steps up to the plate, but before that there's a lot of waiting...more
Mar 15, 2009
Feb 21, 2009
The End of the Affair
**spoiler alert** On one level the title of this novel refers to the end of a sexual affair, but more importantly I think this is the story of what li...more
Jul 08, 2009
Jun 20, 2009
The Great Gatsby
My all time favorite book. I was supposed to recite something at a friend's birthday once, so I memorized the last few paragraphs of this book. I chic...more
not set
Mar 13, 2007
Live and Let Die
Note to Sebastian Faulks who is writing the next Bond book: We don't need to know what Bond eats and drinks at every meal. In fact unless the food is...more
Aug 26, 2008
Jul 20, 2008
A Touch of Death (Hard Case Crime #17)
Are you a fan of Jorge Luis Borges? Because I am.

He once wrote a meditation on one of Zeno's paradoxes. Zeno set out to prove that motion is impossib...more
Feb 16, 2012
Dec 27, 2011
The Abortion
The unnamed narrator of The Abortion works in a library, but nobody ever checks out or reads the books in his library. It's not that kind of library....more
Oct 03, 2009
Feb 25, 2008
The Great American Novel
This book was a godsend after the last Roth novel I read, The Professor of Desire. Whereas that book is overly earnest and self-indulgent The Great Am...more
Dec 20, 2009
Mar 11, 2008
The Far Cry
It would be a far cry from the truth to say this wasn't a compelling read.
Aug 19, 2010
Aug 07, 2010
The Awakening
**spoiler alert** I agree with Rustam's assessment that this book was just all right. Actually I don't see why it raised hackles back when it was firs...more
Sep 2007
Mar 19, 2007
King, Queen, Knave
Maybe it's chauvinistic provincialism on my part, but I find Nabokov less interesting when his stories take place in foreign countries. I just didn't...more
Aug 30, 2009
Jun 10, 2009
The Love of the Last Tycoon
"He saw regret in her face--but there was a flick of the lip, also, a bending of the smile towards some indirection, a momentary dropping and lifting...more
Jun 10, 2008
Mar 19, 2007
The Burnt Orange Heresy (Vintage Crime/Black Lizard)
An art collector hires an art critic to steal a painting from a reclusive artist. It sounds like an allegory about the role of art and commerce in soc...more
Oct 29, 2008
Jul 20, 2008
The Vulcan Academy Murders
I was debating whether to include this on my list, but I thought I should for the historical record. Yes, I used to be a huge Trekker (and yes, that i...more
not set
Mar 16, 2008
The Professor of Desire
It's a shame when an author I like and have defended to others disappoints, but with this one--and much like the main character feels when he visits t...more
Nov 03, 2009
Mar 11, 2008
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