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Aug 23

Books Every Parent Should Read

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Daddy Left

You are Different

[Click on the book cover images to view them in a larger format]

I found the cover shots for these 2 books at BullshitJob.com.

They look like a couple of books every parent with young children should read.

Unfortunately, amazon.com does not seem to carry them, though I’m quite sure they exist, and should be best sellers.

I’m hoping that they are just sold out.

When I find them, I plan to purchase the set for Graham and Valerie. Maybe I can even get them autographed. Wouldn’t that be special?

Let’s get that kid off on the right foot; whatever that means.

Aug 01

The Book Thief by Markus Zusak

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The Book ThiefThis is a major novel. It is also, not an “easy read.”

The time of the novel cover the early years of WW2 on Himmel (Heaven) street in Molching, Germany and tells the stories of an orphan and Book Thief, Liesel Meminger, hated Jews, Hitler love, quiet resistance, and death.

Fittingly, I think, the story is narrated by Death who states he/she is “haunted by humans”. (Aren’t we all?) The first forty, or so, pages are choppy, disjointed, and difficult as if Death doesn’t really want you to read the story, or wants to make sure you really want to read the story.

The Book Thief is not a feel good book; it’s a snapshot of a horrible period in our history. One that could return at any time if some folks have their way: but that’s another story for someone else to write.

Get it; read it.


Apr 28

Books read more than once.

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Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll
The other side of the looking glass where things are not what they seem; or are they?

Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain

Catch 22 by Joseph Heller
 I read this insane book twice years ago. Now everyone uses the phrase “Catch 22” without having to go to the trouble of reading the book.

The Secret History by Donna Tartt
 Murder on a small New England campus. Wonderfully plotted and written. I am now reading it for the 3rd time.

The Sun Also Rises by Ernest Hemingway

The Great Gatsby by F Scott Fitzgerald
 If there is a perfectly written book, this is it. Simple, clean prose and not one word is wasted.

The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zaf?n
 A young boy, Daniel, is taken by his father to the Cemetary of Forgotten Books. There he finds a book, The Shadow of the Wind, that will change his life. Daniel searchs for information about the mysterious writer Julian Carax while living a life that begins to parallel the writers’. He finds what he is looking for; and he finds what he is not looking for.

The novel is Dickensian, and melodramatic, and probably more fun to read in Spanish. and I love it.


Jul 06

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix

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I put off reading this book for a year because I knew that when I finished reading it, I would have another year or two to wait for the next book.

This one is 870 pages and ends too soon. Harry is now 15 and mostly angry. He is constantly yelling, and is generally pissed off. Which sounds like a teenager to me.

He has trouble with a girl, is banned from Quidditch, and has to spend plenty of time in detention writing “I will not tell lies” on the back of his hand with quill that carves the words into his hand.

I will not outline the plot, nor tell you the outcome of another meeting with “he who must not be named.”

Read the book; read all the books over. That’s all you can do while waiting for the next one.


May 20

The Narrows

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The Narrows by Michael Connelly [2004]

Harry Bosch is back!

At the end of the last book I thought maybe he was doing a Marlowe by gaining a family and losing the fire. But he didn’t; lose the fire, or gain a family; though he does gain a daughter.


May 20

The Shadow of the Wind

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The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon. Translated by Lucia Graves [2004]

A book within a book; and stories within stories. A new classic. I am going to do a complete review after I read the book again. Or, maybe I will listen to it this time.

Read about it here, then buy it from here.

Grade: A


A good novel tells us the truth about its hero; but a bad novel tells us the truth about its author. - G. K. Chesterton

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