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Matt rated a book 5 of 5 stars
The Plague by Albert Camus
The Plague
by Albert Camus
read in July, 2015
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Although the plot device of a disease is an intriguing one, this book really isn't about that at all. Camus' humanism really shines here. It is very clear that Camus uses Rieux as a conduit for his philosophy, but all of the other characters are very ...more
Matt rated a book 4 of 5 stars
The World According to Garp by John Irving
The World According to Garp
by John Irving (Goodreads Author)
read in February, 2015
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An amazing read that is entertaining, but does not lose its sense of humanity. I wasn't crazy about the final chapter. It certainly didn't ruin the book, but it did affect my decision to give it four stars instead of five. It's definitely a book that ...more
Matt rated a book 3 of 5 stars
Outlaws of the Marsh by Luo Guanzhong
Outlaws of the Marsh
by Luo Guanzhong
read in December, 2014
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Well, it's not often someone can say that War and Peace was the shortest book he/she read this year....

Being a "great classical Chinese novel", I'm quite glad I read it. I really liked the beginning of this, but once the 108 finally get together, it
...more
Matt rated a book 3 of 5 stars
The Walking Dead, Compendium 2 by Robert Kirkman
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Just as fun and intriguing as the first 48 issues (okay, maybe slightly less). I realize it's not "highbrow" fiction, but I enjoy it nonetheless.
Matt rated a book 4 of 5 stars
Best New American Voices 2001 by Charles Baxter
Best New American Voices 2001
by Charles Baxter
read in December, 2013
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Substantially better than the 2000 version. All seventeen of these stories are at last passable. Highlights for me were "Pilgrims", "Beheadings", "Intervention", and "Loss".
Matt rated a book 4 of 5 stars
From a Crooked Rib by Nuruddin Farah
From a Crooked Rib
by Nuruddin Farah
read in September, 2013
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A short, simple story about a rural, uneducated Somali girl and her thoughts as she moves into more urban environments, mostly in order to escape a forced marriage. It's a unique take on a coming of age story. I'm glad that I found an African book th ...more
Matt rated a book 4 of 5 stars
The War of the End of the World by Mario Vargas Llosa
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This is a fairly complex but ultimately rewarding historical novel based on events in rural Brazil at the end of the 19th century. This book does a great job handling multiple points of view, treating characters not in black and white terms such as " ...more
Matt rated a book 4 of 5 stars
Sputnik Sweetheart by Haruki Murakami
Sputnik Sweetheart
by Haruki Murakami
read in July, 2013
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This is the first Murakami book I have ever read. Loved the first three-quarters of the book, but the final four chapters left me a bit puzzled. I'm certainly intrigued by Murakami though. I'll have to check out his other works some day.
Matt rated a book 5 of 5 stars
The Sorrow of War by Bảo Ninh
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A tragic, but captivating, story of a North Vietnamese soldier during the war. The use of flashbacks is a device that I normally do not like, but it seems so appropriate here. The nonlinear narrative can be very confusing at times, so I would recomme ...more
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The Unbearable Lightness Of Being by Milan Kundera
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