If I was a homeschooler, or still a K-12 educator, I would recommend and use this book wholeheartedly. I like that there are suggestions and recommendIf I was a homeschooler, or still a K-12 educator, I would recommend and use this book wholeheartedly. I like that there are suggestions and recommendations for how to teach young people about diversity at home and at school; many of the comments by the interviewees and/or research subjects were honest and constructive, without being judgmental or critical. There's a lot that this text brings up: differences in culture not just in terms of holidays celebrated or religion or skin color, but in how children are raised, parental expectations, parental interactions with educators, intrapersonal relationships among children, and other invisible ways people are diverse. That part, while interesting, wasn't applicable (obviously) to my needs. However, any parent could (should?) read this; it's instructive without being patronizing or know-it-all.
The one chapter that showed how, in quite a few ways, this book is already dated (it was published in 2003), dealt with same-sex couples. The language was a little cringeworthy--the author of one particular essay kept using the term "homosexual couple"--for some reason, it just seemed strange, as did teachers' discomfort around same-sex families. But, overall, the theme of this text was modeling behavior--which is my personal motto in education: I have to model the behavior(s) I want my students to have. Even for non-trained teachers, this book would be useful and helpful in exploring our diverse world....more
Another book I initially considered for my Intro to African American Studies class. However, almost all of the speeches, chapters, essays, and other eAnother book I initially considered for my Intro to African American Studies class. However, almost all of the speeches, chapters, essays, and other excerpts are abridged. There are some puzzling editorial choices, too: King's interview for Playboy magazine is introduced, but not actually included--there's a note on four pages stating, "This material has been omitted intentionally in this reprint." Then why include it at all? It's not a comprehensive collection of Malcolm X's and King's writings and speeches anyway, so it's not like omitting that one interview would make this collection incomplete.
For people looking for an overview of King's and Malcolm's views, or are unfamiliar with their work (other than, perhaps, what pop culture and collective memory has perpetrated), this is a good book. It's slim--it won't take a reader long to get through this--but for scholars or people looking for a more in-depth look at these two men, this isn't the book for them.
Yes, I am aware that the title says "A Brief History." It's just a little too brief for my needs....more
I learned that I really just can't get into graphic novels. Maybe because this particular book is one of my all-time favorites, but it wasn't the sameI learned that I really just can't get into graphic novels. Maybe because this particular book is one of my all-time favorites, but it wasn't the same story. Is Meg this weepy and whiny in the original? I need to reread it now to compare....more
This was almost two stars. Brianna--ugh. She nearly ruined this book for me, and I'm going to set this series aside for a bit (plus I have a stack ofThis was almost two stars. Brianna--ugh. She nearly ruined this book for me, and I'm going to set this series aside for a bit (plus I have a stack of other books I need to read!) to get the taste of her out of my mouth.
The series has been a love affair between Jamie and Claire. Brianna was introduced in small bits in books 2-3, and while she was somewhat annoying, it could be forgiven, because her world had been turned upside down by her mother's revelations. Brianna is an enigmatic character, not given to outward expressions of her feelings (like her father, we're constantly reminded). In book 4, though, she's fleshed out. And is horrible. She's immature (stamping her feet when she's throwing a temper tantrum), foolish (wearing pants and not following social norms of colonial America, which is dangerous), and petulant. I'm sure Gabaldon thought she was drawing parallels between Jamie and Brianna--both are raped, both are similar in appearance and demeanor, both are quick to anger, both have to live with the consequences of their actions. However, everything--EVERYTHING--Jamie does is driven by love for Claire, Scotland, family, friends, and honor (and, eventually, his daughter). Brianna does things that benefit her. She's selfish. She's so determined to meet Jamie that she's willing to travel alone to meet him, which gets her into a world of trouble (not that she is asking to be raped, or deserved it--but what did she think would happen?). Claire is able to adapt quickly and think on her feet in dangerous times and situations. Brianna seems to think that her height gives her an invincibility and leads her to a false sense of security, which is stupid. Stupid. She's a stupid character--how could she EVER think that Frank Randall was her biological father? How could she think Stephen would just hand over Claire's ring? Why would Claire even want it back? Why wouldn't Brianna listen to Little Jamie and Ian when they warn her against taking Lizzie? (Stupid Lizzie.)
Unlike Jamie, Brianna doesn't think about the consequences of her actions. She doesn't think about what she's doing, other than "find Jamie"--which could be understood; who wouldn't want to know their birth father? But sneaking to the past, leaving Roger, fighting publicly with him after they're married, not being honest w/ her family, not being honest w/ Roger, ignoring the good intentions of her family (in Scotland and America)--I just didn't like it. Her.
And Lizzie. The stupidest literary character I've read in a long time. Stupid girl. Foolish girl.
The parts with Claire, Jamie, and Young Ian were good. Those were enjoyable, and I like that we're seeing Lord John, Willie, Fergus, Marsali, and the Lallybroch clan again. I also like that we're seeing American Indians depicted in a (mostly) respectful way; Ian's relationship w/ the Mohawk and Tuscarora felt organic and realistic. And, while it was sad to see him leave his family, it was good he stayed w/ the Mohawk and got married. What would his life have been, otherwise? He needed to find and travel his own path.
Here's a partial review from someone on Goodreads, who says it better than I: "Gone are the intelligent, canny, funny, bold characters from the first three books. Jamie Fraser was always a man to contend with. Always one step ahead of everyone else. He always knew what was going on and why and had a plan in place to make things go his way. In this book, however, he appears to just be stumbling along like an imbecile. Claire is timid and outraged in turns, but her reactions never appear to fit in any coherent sense. She's timid when she should be bold, and outraged when she should maybe let something go. It's almost incomprehensible how much I suddenly disliked her.
And their daughter? Brianna? Gods save me from ever having to read about her again. What an idiot.
My biggest issue with this book is not the fact that the characters were altogether different, it was the fact that they were altogether stupid. And this is one of those stories that hinges entirely on the Big Misunderstanding. No one is communicating with anyone else, and this of course leads to trouble, which leads to more trouble and more trouble and more trouble since apparently no one can be bothered to tell anyone else what the hell is going on.
If Brianna needed Roger to stay behind so she could get back, she should have told him.
Roger should have planned his departure a bit better.
Why did Brianna scream in terror when she saw Roger in the pub? First she was dreamy, then she was screeching. Didn't make much sense.
Why did Roger leave her alone? After his internal fury over how naive she was being about her safety, he leaves her alone again! And what does the simpleton do? The little brain trust waltzes into the cabin of an 18th century pirate and gets raped.
When they're waiting for Roger to show up on the mountain, they keep referring to him as Roger Wakefield, despite the fact that Brianna knows he's going by Mackenzie....
So he gets his ass handed to him by Jamie and sold to the Iroquois as a slave because Jamie can't be bothered to ask him his first fucking name."
I really, really loved this book. Fun, a few funny moments, romance, Scottish sex--what's not to love? And Jamie--so dreamy! Has there been a sexier,I really, really loved this book. Fun, a few funny moments, romance, Scottish sex--what's not to love? And Jamie--so dreamy! Has there been a sexier, more romantic, dashing hero in literature? I can't wait to start the next one!...more
I really liked book one of this previously unheard-of author. I get that this is translated from French, and things don't always translate perfectly,I really liked book one of this previously unheard-of author. I get that this is translated from French, and things don't always translate perfectly, but this book lacked the charm, humor, urgency, and life of the first. This slogged on for too long; it is technically supposed to be young adult (I think?), but Vango ages fairly rapidly throughout the novel.
It's also becoming one of my biggest annoyances when novels, TV shows, and/or movies have a group of characters and then proceed to break them up--not in a romantic sense, but to send them off in different directions. I just sort of feel like what's the point, then? There are so many characters in this story--some fictional, some historical, but not all of them are needed to drive the story forward, and it was really unpleasant to see how Edith was suffering for so long. There was just, ultimately, too much going on in this novel: the crash of the Hindenburg, Nuremberg laws and rounding up Jews, the Stalin regime, German occupation of France; travels from NYC to Paris to Russia to Germany to Scotland to London...Just too much....more