Saturday, August 28, 2010

Over Sea, Under Stone

by Susan Cooper

Grade: All right

It was good, but I think it would have been better if I'd read it when I was younger. The children--Simon, Jane, and Barnabas--were very much English school children of that time period. Like the Pevensies.
Anyway, I want to start on the next book, The Dark is Rising, because that seems to be the important one, and so is maybe more interesting.

Neither Here Nor There

by Bill Bryson

Grade: Unfinished
Read: To page 164.

There was too much stuff about sex, and a bit of anti-Catholicism (not much, but it was the last straw so to speak), so I stopped. Plus I had a load of other books to read.

But there were some interesting bits, namely:

Is Copenhagen really the safest city in Europe? (pg. 125)

I have to look up the Skagen school of Danish painting, and if I ever go to Denmark, visit the Ostre Anlaeg museum. (pg. 127)

"Germans are flummoxed by humour, the Swiss have no concept of fun, the Spanish think there is nothing at all ridiculous about eating dinner at midnight, and the Italians should never, ever have been let in on the invention of the motor car."
"It fascinated me that Europeans could at once be so alike--that they could be so universally bookish and cerebral, and drive small cars, and live in little houses in ancient towns, and love soccer, and be relatively unmaterialistic and law-abiding, and have chilly hotel rooms and cosy and inviting places to eat and drink--and yet be so endlessly, unpredictably different from each other as well."

Is it still like that? I wonder. I keep thinking of demographics and the EU and the downfall of European Catholicism. (pg. 32)

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

First Meetings in the Enderverse

by Orson Scott Card

Grade: Good

The Polish Boy: His view on Catholics is a bit off. Some of it was surprisingly sympathetic--he was obviously trying to be unbiased and tolerant and all that--but some of it was not pleasant.

Teacher's Pest: Good enough. I quite liked it, actually.

Ender's Game: Much more similar than I thought to the novel. I'd have thought he'd have changed a lot, but he didn't.

Investment Counselor: In some ways my favourite, except that it was so terribly open ended. Who is that Jane program, exactly? There were hints that it might be malevolent, but then nothing happened.
(EDIT: I now realize that Jane is a character in some of the sequels. This story is not meant to be read alone.)

So all in all: fine.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

A Wizard of Mars

by Diane Duane

Grade: Good

Excellent newest addition.
But, um....I forget any interesting details at all.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Our Fairy-Tale Romance

by Andrew Schmiedicke

Grade: Good

It had some interesting ideas in it, like the way they did their wedding. I liked that. And the way they can see the differences between men and women--like the fact that women tend to be more spontaneous, and their random acts of interest don't necessarily mean anything, while with men it's different.