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Member: MeditationesMartini

CollectionsYour library (1,501)

Reviews1,501 reviews

Tagsarticle (143), essay (41), interview (27), 2013/07/05 (26), webcomic (25), blog (16), 2009/03/31 (13), 2010/03/28 (11), conference paper (10), web resource (10) — see all tags

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About meNow: 34, male, from Victoria, BC, Canada. A new dad!!!!!!

I like books that spin me right round.

About my libraryI love books until they fall apart in my arms, unless I pass them on to another lover. I also spent a lot of years traveling light, and although these days the volumes do seem to have started filling the corners a little, I would still throw 'em on the fire at a moment's notice to show my devotion to the Dear Leader or get a good beach party going. It makes "my library" something I'm kind of unwilling to define - I kind of like to think of the universe in general as my library. My LibraryThing is not a catalog of books I own, but an aide-memoire where I can record books I read and what I thought about them at the time of reading.

The date tags show when I finished (re)reading the book in question. Things that are not in and of themselves books (such as academic articles, short stories, government reports) will be tagged and colour-coded accordingly (although I am pretty lax about this).

I will also tag foreign-language books as such. Other tags are idiosyncratic and mostly for my own amusement.

Rough guide to ratings:

0 - Not rated; I don't use this one.
0.5 - Not just shitty; actively hateful.
1 - "This book is fucking garbage."
1.5 - "This book is bad, man."
2 - "This was not very good."
2.5 - "Enh, it was okay, I guess."
3 - "This book wasn't bad."
3.5 - "This was pretty good."
4 - "Totally fun!"
4.5 - "This book is a stunning triumph."
5 - "At this moment, I feel like this does what it does better than anything else out there." Note that enthusiasm sometimes fades.

Basically, my ratings skew high (as they should, I think--who wants to spend their time reading stuff they don't enjoy?); for fun reads, as opposed to articles and the like, anything rated four or higher I would happily reread under all circumstances, 3.5 I could see getting to again but not really bothered eiher way, 3 I might reread if the weird wilful whim took me, 2-2.5 or I would not pick up again except in a pinch (no good books in the exchange at the hostel on top of Mt. Fuji), and less than 2 I would not pick up under any circumstances, but would go for a walk in the sunshine instead.

Thanks for stopping by!

GroupsI became a fabulous opera, Infinite Jesters, Le Salon des Amateurs de la Langue, Le Salon du peuple pour le peuple, Tropic of Ideas

Favorite authorsJoseph Addison, Vasily Aksyonov, Lloyd Alexander, Dante Alighieri, Beowulf poet, Hannah Arendt, Aristotle, Isaac Asimov, Mikhail Bakhtin, Mikhail Bakunin, J. G. Ballard, Honoré de Balzac, Lester Bangs, J. M. Barrie, John Barth, L. Frank Baum, Max Beerbohm, Brian Michael Bendis, Walter Benjamin, Pierre Berton, Elizabeth Bishop, William Blake, Boethius, Hannes Bok, Jorge Luis Borges, Bertolt Brecht, Raymond Briggs, Charlotte Brontë, Emily Brontë, Sir Thomas Browne, Dick Bruna, Nikolai Bukharin, Mikhail Bulgakov, Anthony Burgess, Frances Hodgson Burnett, Charles Burns, George Gordon Byron, Baron Byron, Italo Calvino, Albert Camus, Lewis Carroll, Michael Chabon, Geoffrey Chaucer, G. K. Chesterton, Chris Claremont, Arthur C. Clarke, Susanna Clarke, Leonard Cohen, Samuel Taylor Coleridge, Carlo Collodi, Joseph Conrad, Susan Cooper, Bernard Cornwell, Hart Crane, e. e. cummings, Will Cuppy, Roald Dahl, Peter David, Robertson Davies, Charles Dickens, John Donne, Fyodor Dostoevsky, Alexandre Dumas, Gerald Durrell, Gwynne Dyer, Terry Eagleton, Umberto Eco, Mark Edmundson, T. S. Eliot, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Friedrich Engels, Philip José Farmer, William Faulkner, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Penelope Fitzgerald, Gustave Flaubert, Ian Fleming, C. S. Forester, Allan Fotheringham, Michel Foucault, John Fowles, Northrop Frye, Jean Genet, Sandra M. Gilbert, Natalia Ginzburg, John Glassco, William Golding, Adam Gopnik, René Goscinny, Gerald Graff, Antonio Gramsci, Günter Grass, Stephen Greenblatt, Graham Greene, Jacob Grimm, Frederick Philip Grove, Susan Gubar, Ursula K. Le Guin, Thomas Hardy, Chris Harman, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Seamus Heaney, Heinrich Heine, Robert A. Heinlein, Joseph Heller, Ernest Hemingway, Hergé, Russell Hoban, Homer, Robert E. Howard, Aldous Huxley, Christopher Isherwood, Kazuo Ishiguro, Jerome K. Jerome, Ha Jin, Samuel Johnson, Franz Kafka, John Keats, Jack Kerouac, Charles Kingsley, Rudyard Kipling, Igor Kordey, William Labov, Peter Ladefoged, Harper Lee, Laurie Lee, Stan Lee, Fritz Leiber, Madeleine L'Engle, Elmore Leonard, Doris Lessing, C. S. Lewis, Astrid Lindgren, Clarice Lispector, Ann-Marie MacDonald, Macumbeira; tomcatMurr, Geert Mak, Olivia Manning, Thomas Mann, Greil Marcus, Christopher Marlowe, Gabriel García Márquez, Andrew Marvell, Karl Marx, Peter Matthiessen, Daphne du Maurier, Marshall McLuhan, Herman Melville, Jen Van Meter, Peter Milligan, Miriam Young, Michel de Montaigne, Michael Moorcock, Alan Moore, Grant Morrison, Farley Mowat, Haruki Murakami, Vladimir Nabokov, V. S. Naipaul, Friedrich Nietzsche, Scott O'Dell, Michael Ondaatje, George Orwell, Nicholas Ostler, Orhan Pamuk, David Peace, Mervyn Peake, Plato, Edgar Allan Poe, Alexander Pope, Richard Price, Pierre-Joseph Proudhon, Marcel Proust, Thomas Pynchon, Tom Robbins, Eden Robinson, Christina Rossetti, Philip Roth, J. K. Rowling, Damon Runyon, Salman Rushdie, Miguel de Cervantes, Joe Sacco, Edward W. Said, Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, J. D. Salinger, Jean-Paul Sartre, Marjane Satrapi, John Ralston Saul, Sei Shonagon, Maurice Sendak, Robert Service, William Shakespeare, Robert Shea, Percy Bysshe Shelley, Tom Shippey, Robert Silverberg, Gail Simone, Richard Steele, John Steinbeck, Robert Louis Stevenson, Bram Stoker, Patrick Süskind, Jun'ichirō Tanizaki, Charles R. Tanner, Cary Tennis, Dylan Thomas, Roy Thomas, Thucydides, J. R. R. Tolkien, Leo Tolstoy, Peter Trudgill, Mark Twain, Virgil, Gauri Viswanathan, V. N. Volosinov, Voltaire, Kurt Vonnegut, Mark Waid, Bill Watterson, Evelyn Waugh, H. G. Wells, Irvine Welsh, Lord Breaulove Swells Whimsy, E. B. White, Walt Whitman, Oscar Wilde, Henry Williamson, Bill Willingham, Robert Anton Wilson, George Woodcock, Gene Luen Yang, Banana Yoshimoto, Slavoj Žižek, Émile Zola (Shared favorites)

VenuesFavorites

Favorite bookstoresABC Book and Comic Emporium, Dark Horse Books, Homer Kitabevi, Munro's Books, People's Co-Op Bookstore, Poor Richard's Books Limited, Pulpfiction Books, Pulpfiction Books West, Renaissance Books, Robinson Crusoe 389, Russell Books, Tanglewood Books, The Blue Parrot English Books, Tyrolia

Other favoritesThe Rhizome Cafe

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Membership LibraryThing Early Reviewers/Member Giveaway

Real nameMartin M.

LocationVancouver, BC

Account typepublic, lifetime

URLs /profile/MeditationesMartini (profile)
/catalog/MeditationesMartini (library)

Member sinceFeb 26, 2007

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Comments

Thanks so much for your editing. You are right, my subject verb agreement was off there, quite sloppy of me! Your suggestion is great, thanks!
Ah. That's fine then. Thank you for the clarification.
Hello MedMar,

First off, thank you so much for putting time and effort into this. While I love that this project is happening, the scale is overwhelming, so I much prefer to hang back and watch from afar until my aid is absolutely necessary. I couldn't take on Solla's initiative to save my life, so responding to messages from ones such as yourself are my strong suit.

As for your questions:

1) You may change it to "me and you". I like the rhythm of "I and you" better, but the grammar flub is too much.

2)I prefer reocurring as well.

3)Order is paramount with quotes in my reviews. I'd prefer they not migrate from where I have placed them.

Cheers.
Martiniiii, thank you very much! I'll definitely read it, if only to find out what you think I am like :) But it looks really good apart from that, as well, and I'll get hold of it soon as I can. Nice review, too - I thumbed it.
http://www.librarything.com/topic/154880#4429626
January ?
And I saw your thread about those books too.........and discovered that you & I have I Am a Puppy in common, and you wrote a review of it that made me smile. I have a half dozen of those board books (I Am a Mouse and others) collected and saved from when my children were small.
I saw your thread about the books you accidently sold and I just wanted to make a civil comment away from that thread lest people jump down my throat for my suggestion. My suggestion would be to try eBay. Some people do sell the ARCs that they receive, so you may be able to find copies of the books that you misplaced. Good luck!
Thanks for your comments, quite a while ago, about Geert Mak's In Europe. It's a fantastic book -- I felt all those disparate books and articles I'd read over the years fall into order.
Hi Martin,

I'm sorry if my reaction in the 'What to do' ER topic came over like a lynch mob reaction. What I read and understood from your message (which you have to admit was a bit rambling, but I understand how writing goes just before going to bed) was that you had received books, lost them, and had already marked them not received. All I wanted to say with my reaction is that that was not the right thing to do because of what such a mark means (a mistake on the part of the publisher).
I never intended to pass judgment on you or make you feel attacked (nor did I want to make anybody else attack you). I just wanted to express the way I felt about the marking as not received (which is that it was untruthful)(I have no idea of official rules or who does what with such a mark).
I feel kind of bad that others now put me in the 'lynch mob'/'turkey' group, I never intended it that way. I just wanted to say, no hard feelings, and good on you that you posted the topic to try to 'fix' you losing the ER books without having reviewed them first.

Sara
No prob. I read your post and thought, oh he's looking for alternatives. then I come back and the turkeys had come out despite it being Thanksgiving. Anyway...I hope you find them at the library and can review eventually.
Your reviews are wonderful and challenging - "Thank you for sharing".

I've not read The Burn by Aksyonov, and I am still unbuttering your review. You wrote: "but the secret is that all these Apollonians are corroding and all their arts, like Samsik's jazz, are just the efflorescence of desperation, the sound that escapes a human being squeezed to death."

Do you find that there is a Secret which lies within a great book/writer? And this one, "being squeezed to death", a kind of signature secret.

Is one of your projects looking for the Secret around which lives are spun? And spinning it along? So often the Secret is that it is no secret. (!) Keep up the great work and good hunting.
Your Sloterdijk review compelled me to add him to my wishlist. You also reviewed a related item, was that actually an oral presentation / speech, or is it available in print?! (Forgetting the name, Geoffrey something-or-other.)

Good stuff, had not even heard the name before.
Argh! But Murr - MURR, is intimidated by it! Besides, I'm reading War and Peace...

But it sounds tempting all the same. Lemme think about it.
Useful reference to Die Antwoord in your recent Coetzee review, and I like the rest well enough to give it a thumb. Nicely done.
Great news man !
Yeah, I'm living ok.

A little too much ok. Middle aged and middle class as Joni M once sang....

For an eternally young working class lad that is too bland a life for comfort.

So I guess I have turned to Jung, Naranjo, a kind of intellectual spiritualism. The collective subconscious, the 9 points of the enneagram, the unfolding universe. Will be interesting to see where it ends.

I like the sound of your life. Creative chaos maybe? Sounds fun.
Hey Martin, how are you doing?

Thought I'd drop in to say hello, we don't seem to move in the same circles at the moment.

By the way, I like the chameleon like creature in your cover photo.

But what is that little creature on the branch with the curled tail?

z.
Nice Whorf review, Martini. I see Murr agrees :)
Good job on Whorf. Nice to see that someone else appreciates him.
Good heavens, the link in your post. . . Absolutely astonishing stuff there--head, pin, dancing, & angels came to mind. I'm interested in subcultures, though, and those folk seem to constitute one so I hauled out the OED (& magnifying glass) to see how 'fat' was used in Shakespeare's time, something that apparently didn't occur to any of that lot. There were a fair few quotations fr. S'speare in historical examples and, you'd never guess, when not using the word figuratively he uses it for 'plump, sturdy' and for 'over-plump'. Given that the Prince was breathing heavily I'm guessing that the line referred to downright pudginess rather than healthy plumpness.

Thanks for an amusing diversion. (By 'thanks' I mean 'thanks' rather than 'bouquet' or 'weighing station' or 'sweating'.)
I've just read your review of Klein's Eat Fat & was struck by the last paragraph. You make a good point about Rabelais, but I must look into the history of the 'thing' about fat Hamlet because I know nothing of it. In any case, this reminded me that when I was in my mid-teens, a friend & I attended the local uni's production of Hamlet 4 times during its run: neither of us were swots but the actor playing Hamlet made the play irresistible. The review in our town's newspaper was favourable but it deplored that actor's chubbiness, suggesting that a proper Hamlet would have looked more svelte than he in tights. . . Delighted that I've long been out of a place with so provincial a newspaper and pleased that that Hamlet went on to become a terribly successful stage actor.
Thank you! I've waded pretty deeply in your reviews, and I'm looking forward to reading more! We agree on Alan Moore pretty definitively, and you definitely crystallized what was bothering me about Fables, which I wanted to like so much more.
I absolutely love your Trainspotting review. I'm off to read more!
To say that i love your reviews more than life would be needlessly hyperbolic but the fact that this thought crossed my mind suggests that i do like them quite a lot. :)
Hey MM. Regarding your review of Benito Cereno, I think that the ending is ironically overdone, and is supposed to make us conduct our own condemnation of the Americans but also, more importantly, of ourselves for (at least in my case) rooting for them.
Hey Martin,

Superb review of Minor Episodes Major Ruckus, fantastic all around.

Cheers!
Hilarious review of Miller's and weirdly insightful review of Tropic of Cancer. it would have gave old Brooklyn boy a laugh, I bet.
Really enjoyed your Anna Karenina review. Very nice.
Lucky you, missing this one. Not near as bad as Irene, when we (and you combined) were out of it for a week and a half. Just a day or so, up here, without essentials this time. Thanks for asking.
I attend Santa Clara University, a Catholic school in the Silicon Valley of California about 40-50 miles south of San Francisco. Though SCU is Jesuit and attached to one of the two Jesuit seminaries in the States, I'm an undergrad with no plans to attend seminary for ordination. I'm in religious studies and Greek, and would strongly consider the priesthood but for a girl I love too much to get rid of.

I love to teach, and I'm planning to go the Ph.D. route. But I would also like to do interfaith work (Christianity and Buddhism) and perhaps give parish talks and do adult ed. I'm really wary of the academic world and the weird politics of it, so I'd rather not put all my talents in that basket.

You?
Hey, Dude!

I'll need to get that We Will Rock You. My firstborn daughter was born to "Bohemian Rhapsody," back in '97 -- the one w/all the developmental "problems," that I've occasionally documented, here or there, over the years. In 2000, I bought Queens Greatest Hits, and I'll be hot diggity damned if that wasn't the one CD, the very one thing, that would calm her once she started crying. That heavy beat ("Another One Bites the Bust") especially, soothed her and got her literally rocking back and forth of her own volition. She hasn't mastered very many words in her life, but whenever we're in the car and Queen comes on the radio, she gets LOUD, screeching "Kah-ween, Kah-ween," not quite able, yet, to articulate "Queen" in a single syllable. Read your concise review and thought you might want to know.

Best,

Brent

I was led here through the verbal sands by your review of [The Confidence-Man], which is one of the better reviews I've read on LT.

Kudos! @_@
Thanks, Smartini!

There really should be some hoity toity technical term for that. "Impersareviewing"?

I do remember your regaling us with the enjoyment of the Illuminatus Trilogy, but I don't remember that, and at the innocent age of eight! Gramma and Grampa maybe shoulda kept a wee bit closer eye on the reading material their precocious grandson was gobbling up. That's funny.

Owwwwwww, to all that nefarious sea life. Hope they get you fixed up and feeling better quick -- very odd that sting's longevity. Just got back from a week at the beach down San Diego-way myself, but other than some mild sunburn, am doing good. Had a great relaxing time.

Things have not been as unusual, no doubt, as your African adventure. Went up to fjord country in Quebec, saw whales, sampled the Quebecois culture for a week. Otherwise a quiet summer, except my herniated disc is acting up. Basically, I can't walk because of the pain. It will be a miserable three weeks before my operation at the end of this month. On the plus side, prgress on my latest book, which I call A Somewhat Ordinary Life, is going well. I'm aiming to finish it by my birthday, in November.
Hi Martin,

I feel a bit like Lonesome George at the moment as my wife is away in Russia!

She is the author/editor of Practical Russian Reader and a brilliant teacher of Russian.

We always find time to do the things we enjoy, so I hope you find the time to check it out.

TT
A full yet perky tit. Have you found Mistah Kurtz yet?
Hi Martin,

I notice you have a copy of Easy Russian, which I also have.

Are you still studying Russian? If so, you might find Practical Russian Reader helpful. It is a new book of Russian short stories with helpful exercises.

Let me know what you think of it?

TT

http://www.amazon.com/Practical-Russian-Reader-Vol-1-Intermediate/dp/1470139790

Enjoyed your review. Having just completed the Alter would be an especially good time to read (or reread) Voltaire's Philosophical Dictionary.
Thank you so much for your spot on review of Nonviolent Communication. Couldn't have said it better myself! (Plus, I got a few laughs out of your snark.)

Cheers,
Dani
Hi

Thank you for excellent review of Easy Russian. We have other learning materials and new books, contemporary and classics. If you would like to review any of our releases let me know. And have a look though our catalogues

www.urban-romantics.com
www.anton-chekhov.com
www.easyrussian.co.uk

Max
maxb@urban-romantics.com
Great fun reading your reviews. And a feeling of relief on your review of "From Locke to Saussure". In your low moments, which I hope are few, be assured you are appreciated. Now get back to your publishing efforts, and break a leg...
Your review of Grun, The Timetables of History, was wonderful. Why are folks so interested in the immediate impinging events of the day? While at the same time, actively hostile to "learning" the complete wide story? So many of the same or similar events happened in The Past, that place News goes to die.
Thanks for the best ever comment comment. I know it is bad form to snicker at your own snipes, but I just about choked on my java when it came to me!
'that butter-wouldn't-melt smarm offends me more' thumbed
So do I---the burja is the worst I've experienced as we near a full two weeks of freezing cold and constant strong, gusty winds...The port hasn't taken in container ships for 11 days. I should stick my nose in an India book...
But is it literature?
all i can say is bravo readers!
Just read your Warholic review. Ouch! Somewhere a novelist is plotting his next book, about a guy named MARTIAN who gets run over by a bus. That may just be another chapbook. Also, unforgivably, A.T. messed up the simple Butthole Surfers lyrics: "There's a time to shit and a time for God - the last shit I took was pretty fuckin' odd" with "There's a time to shit and a time to pray -" and I forget the rest right now.
Thanks, dear. Just posted a Hrotsvitha link over on Summer Stock. Enjoy!
Oh! How terrible! Well obviously your game-mates were not using a Salon-approved dictionary!
'Sieur, your help is needed in a discussion on Derrida.

http://www.librarything.com/topic/79104#2962301 post 66 onwards. Eager for your input.

:)
as yet movement on the buc buc issue
Well, it's enjoyable reading, so keep up the good work!
she'll be happy to know of the attention--i'll write back her response verb-ate-em
Where does the gas come, for all your reviews? What kinda engine you run in there?
15 metal power ballads coming up ... soon soon soon ... I promise I promise I promise
Meant to send you this link a while back to a metal piece I posted recently, that I thought you might enjoy.

http://enriquefreequesreads.blogspot.com/2011/08/top-thirteen-heavy-metal-songs-...

Now I'm working on a piece called best metal ballads you've never heard (and never wanted to hear).

Anything over a 6.0 on the 'ol Richter makes me nervous. Happy to read it was pretty far north of you, looks like.
I had a hell of a time finding the so-called cookie jar, Martin. Must be a Canadian thing. Then I opened the lid to the ceramic dish that Rita made, and voila. Hey, Canada was down here to help put things together afterward, by the way, in addition to a ton of guys from Kansas. I ran into the three of the Canadians front of the house (because I couldn't get out of the driveway), chopping down limbs and putting up wire: one from Sault Ste. Marie, one from twenty miles north of there, and a jovial cat with a mustache from Montreal.

So, you walked to town to catch the bus? Was it raining? Blowing you around? I've never done that myself. Thursday night we're going to dinner at a barbecue place in Kingston with Carol--to thank her--and she'll give us the lowdown on Irene, in which you'll no doubt play a role as a character. I'll use some of the money you left to treat her to dinner.
Sorry, I flagged your Coover review. I meant to thumb it, and did after I flagged. I was given a choice of reasons for flagging but begged off. Anyway, brilliant review. I haven't read the book so it might be utterly off the mark, but brilliant review.
So, I guess it was all a dream ala Finnegan?
Did the hurricane totally screw up your plans?
Ok I can't edit that for some reason. Trying link again.
Shit, bookstores. I did a run down here of ones I like and have heard good things about. The bar Half King I would highly recommend as I just found out they have outside seating as well.
The male dog is a prick but he knows THE RULES.
I do not like that hat. Goodbye!
go dog go has been read in our house for years. more for bhairavi now, though she's a bit above it we all have insider nostalgia. IT'S A DOG PARTY!
Hello ~

And my thanks for your kind note and appreciated "filling in the blanks" on the situation that I found myself walking into unawares. I have no way of knowing what it's really all about, of course, but I'll be responding to the posts at the end of the closing thread and do my best to then find my way to get on board the other. Your note was not unlike the rays from the lighthouse to those in the storm, providing enough of a glimpse to know the direction in which to steer.

Hoping our paths cross again -- maybe even in the new thread, if you're there.

With gratitude and best wishes,

Gene
Go Dog Go is sooo good. I was always intrigued by the illustration of the dogs on the boat in the mooonlight. My kid loves the one with all the dogs asleep but the one with his eyes wide open!
The books, three of them, have departed the United States of America, and are now making their way for The People's Republic of Cascadia!
that link is hysterical, and I'm now going to have to pass it on, giving props to you of course for being its originator ...
thanks, i'll torch him
thanks man! I'll throw in that Stanley Park too while I'm at it, and when you get a chance to read it and if it's really good, maybe you could sign your name in it, send it back when done, and we could get another book-around-the-world thing going ...
Hey are you back man, or still in Europe? If you are, re-send me your address info and I'll get those promised books in the mail next week ...
Happy Canada Day!
if it was me in trailer park i'd hang myself, but you left your belt here...
Dear MeditationesMartini:

I was hoping to show my daughter your piece: Usher vs. St. Augustine (I THINK I remember it being appropriate enough to share w/ a teenager) and I can't find it for the life of me. Could I trouble you for a hint on where in your voluminous collection of writing I might find it? Thank you so much.

RMRM
company, maybe yeni raki
Hi! I was just perusing your profile here and see that you have several hundred authors listed as favorites. I dare say your definition of "favorites" is broad, but I suspect there is more to it than the obvious. I have thought of listing all (or most) of the authors of my books under "favorites" because there is no direct way to get a sort of books by author without typing the author's bloody name in the search box, and so by listing them under "favorites" you can get there more easily. So color me curious, but I was just wondering whether that was your rationale or, if not, what it is. It is interesting to see how people adapt LT to their own needs, but it's not always transparent. One always learns amazing things by snooping around in other people's libraries!

BTW, been reading some of your past reviews — very witty and very informative — in short, enjoyable.

Suz
Due to your record of the face off between Usher and St. Augustine, you are now my favorite person. Quelle delight.
I have no idea what that's about. How weird! I've seen that happen with some reviews if they get pimped a second or third time after the fact, but I'm not aware of any such pimping going on, are you? The travesty and injustice to the sacred memory of Joyce! Oh, I'm wroth!

Hey, saw you're leaving Friday. Your book is boxed. Or books, I should say. I'll expedite them on Monday so that you receive them at your parents no later than Thursday. I've been so busy during the day ... blahblahblah ... just ain't made it to the damn post office even with the best of intentions!

Hey (part II) I just got Alphabetical Africa in my hands last night. It is sooooooooo up yer alley. A glorious linguistics experiment bar none. First chap. "A," the words all begin with the letter A; second chap. "B," there's words beginning with A & B; and so on up to Z; then the whole thing contracts on itself, Z-A, so that you see the creation and effacement of a novel (a very poetic and, obviously, alliterative one) happening while you read it. Fo And it's not just nonsense, Abish has something to say, and it's pretty consistently hysterical.

Here's a quick description: "While the 'geoglyphic' African landscape forms and crumbles, it is, among other things, attacked by an army of driver ants, invaded by Zanzibar, painted orange by the transvestite Queen Quat of Tanzania, and becomes a hunting ground for a pair of murderous jewel thieves tracking down their nymphomaniac moll".

Sound good? ;-)

i'm all for the Talia electric, but we'll have to keep in close touch because we may have to leave before the last of June for India...we'll see. right now it is about 50/50. Late May could coincide with Tito's youth day or the River of Refošk.
I thought of when I was out yesterday (see other things that sprout entry): the variety of experiences possible here are endless, especially if you want to drink and fart around with locals.

I thought of coming up with a list, but instead I may toss of a few starting with

1. touring wine sellers/growers in the karst
2. catching vipers
3. drinking with the benchaholics before moving to the bar in the humble Manzioli square in Izola
4. wandering through Croatian Istria in search of odd liquors sold at roadside
5. visiting the Hrastovlje fortress/church in which you find a Dance of Death painting from about the 13th century
If in fact you decide to go the rent-a-car and drive from place to place route, and you have some idea where you might want to go, I recommend Alastair Sawday's French Bed & Breakfast, which has served me well. You'll find listings of B&Bs throughout France, each one described, and the recent editions no doubt have a lot of Internet addresses so you can make reservations easily. Usually, they don't call for an advance deposit. (The whole business aspect of things is decidedly more relaxed in France.) And as Lisa said, these places are not expensive, and often are in renovated medieval houses, sometimes chateux, or even in vineyards. The well-know Rick Steve also puts out B&B books that serve the same purpose.
Congrats Smartini on making it to 1,000 reviews! I'm in awe of the homage. And that Piero piece was exceptional too. Speaking of whom, I deleted that second "n" on the front page. You hear that Piero! I fixed yer freequeing name! I never could spell.
Even with all this talk about roles and role playing, I still don't know what the hell is going on. Which is okay; I'm not big on roles and I don't have to know. I'll just do my thing, until eventually I don't. But if you're now the one with the password or the master key or whatever it's called to the salon front (introductory) page, please correct the Weissman under awesome anthologies: it should be Weissman, one n.
Rockin' 1000th review.
Mr Martini,

Where is that nr. 1000 ?
How about nbr. 1000 ?
Great review of a World undone. Thumbed !
It is strange indeed to be fused with Tomcat.
I suspected it somehow as my tail grew bristles of fluffy hair overnight ; )
Wow Meditationes, a review of my review.
What an honour. Thank you indeed
thank you, we are all fine here. How are your friends in Tokyo?
ignore the ass below, and contemplate this from Jaroslav Hasek:

Those who boggle at strong language are cowards, because it is real life which is shocking them, and weaklings like that are the very people who cause most harm to culture and character. They would like to see people grow up into a group of over-sensitive little people-masturbators of false culture... People like that proclaim their indignation in public, but take unusual pleasure in going to public lavatories to read obscene inscriptions on the walls.

from
The Good Soldier Svejk
I just read your Goethe review. Must you really be so crass and vulgar?. I don't know when I've read an LT review containing so much that disgusts the eye, ear and mind. Surely with such a broad vocabulary you can express yourself without scatological language? sheesh.
Do you like anime? http://www.gorgeousanime.com
Thanks mucho! Looking forward . . .
Did Livy say whether it was cider or balsamic vinegar?
I realise I'm not expressing an original thought here, but you write lovely reviews, and I hope you continue to write them for a long while.

Best
Lee
That was the best opening line of a review I've read in a while ("Things Fall Apart"). And you've made me want to read the book. I love books that spin me around too.
Best,
Tui
Thanks, Martin,

you made me laugh. When the collection of short stories is published I will have to list you in the thanks as one of my early supporters. I hope to have many more published this year. I will let you know.
Hi, Martin.
Re: your Foucault review and talk of the Triad, I was reminded of a Rorty essay where he quotes passages from Freud (Standard Edition Vol 16, p284-285) that show that Freud thought of himself as part of the same de-centering movement that included Copernicus and Darwin. So a slightly different Triad than Foucault's; and a triad that emphasizes the impact Science has had on Man's self-image.

Best Wishes,
Stuart
Martini mon,

My Gawd you're almost at 1,000 reviews. Must have a celebration in the salon once you hit four digits.

Listen, wanted to draw your attention to this post in case you missed it, on Sam Shepard.
Well, do you not even have a DVD player or a car stereo? This CD will play even on DVD player. Do you not have a single device in your house or car that takes CDs? Any desktop computer will also pay. Providing there's a CD drive there.

CD in fact represent the most popular by far medium for any audio recordings. The times when CD can be called a thing of the past are still in the very distant future. And absence of CD drive in apple lap-tops have been accepted even by the best of apple fans as a major flaw and inconvenience. Installation of complex software, especially things such as libraries etc inevitably require use of CD. So I would not dismiss this little disk function so readily just yet.
Hey Meditations
Sorry to hear about your trouble playing CDs. This one will actually play on any home stereo even in the car stereo. You don't need to use computer. It is an audio CD. But if you have no CD player, and I hear you are an apple lover, iTunes will have a download in the iTunes store. Here's a link:
http://itunes.apple.com/us/album/easy-russian-for-english-speakers/id393121431
Hi!

I start read The Pornographer's Poem by Michael Turner!

What did you like in The Pornographer's Poem?

I read it in Russian!

In Internet I try to find this book in English, but it's impossible to read it on-line.
Could you tell me the name of the porno movie from the beginning of the book (1,4) when he told about his 1st time watched porn.
I try to translate, so it might be "Around Jerk off 1976"

Vigen
apologies if I've put you on the spot here: http://www.librarything.com/topic/103659#2338648 but I got a nice chuckle over your, uh, diminutive review of Travesty, and it reminded me that we'd originally had the book scheduled to begin on Dec. 1st.

Jesus' Son starts Dec. 16th -- I really think you'll like that one. I love it. Look forward to rereading it.
Thank you.
I am trying to figure out how to "position" the Oxford Eng Dic in my life. Just bought it...with slipcase and magnifying glass. Where do you keep your 2 vols and have you gotten some other magnifying system for reading do go with it ?
Hey man, I'll def. be in contact. I'm leaving within the hour, but probably won't visit BC for at least a week (my friend has to wait for his passport to come to him).

Thanks a ton (and I mean a tonnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnn) for all that info (and those offers, those islands look incredible--they kinda make me feel like an intruder, but well, we'll see! We should for sure hang out when I get up, if ya can). It's something I'll show my friend once we meet and get at least to our friend's house in Port Townsend.

Boy, I hope I don't allow myself to get overloaded on nature before even getting far. I'll tell ya by day 3 of last summer's hike I cared not at all for the beauty that surrounded me.

See ya!
(BTW are there any bridges to the island the P.R.N.P. is on, or do you have to take a ferry? If so, expensive?)

(THX.)
Like yer new name, mate. And Happy Birthday?!?!?!

How's it goin' up there? I was thinking of maybe asking for your phone number, or something. Is it still possible to hike in the Pacific Rim?

Thing is: I thought my trip would be canceled this summer, suddenly feeling I should stay home and help keep my dad from going nuts and overworking himself, &c., and I ended up blowing 90% of the funds I had saved up. Last week a very old friend called me up with $5,000 to blow on a trip and invited me along starting Saturday. Funds are down to $1,000 it looks now, but we're still doing a big road trip and coming to the pacific northwest. I hope to see some or all of: Glacier and Going-to-the-Sun Road, Yellowstone, Olympic (again), and the Pacific Rim. Granted I only have 20 days to trip around abouts, so can't spend a lot of time at these locations.

But er yes yes yes, if possible we should do that West Coast Trail, or if we can't get permission in time for that and you have to reserve a date far in advance, I at least want--need--to see some of the smaller day trails in the northern chunk of the P.R.N.P.

Y'know...etc.etc.

Also: Any suggestions on things to do, places to visit, things to see?
Did you change your username because it's your birthday today? If so, Happy Birthday! How did you switch so quickly? I'm going to miss my twin brother. :)
Great review for Infinite Jest. You've truly made me want to give it a go.
Fucking awesome review of IJ. Well done, and thanks for the pimp therein.
Re: Magus - I picked up an early copy of the Magus not too far back. I hear very mixed opinions on whether to read the original or the edited version Fowles released some odd years later. Whadda you think, brah?
;-)
Regarding ratings curving: If you think of .5 through 5 stars as representing the ratings you would give to all books, then I agree that most books you read should be rated on the higher end of the scale. Instead, think of them as representing the ratings you would give to the books that you read. Then 3-3.5 stars represents the average book you read (for me, 3 stars means I liked it, 3.5 means I liked it a lot), and 4 stars and above are reserved for really good books - books you would recommend without hesitation. Essentially, high ratings mean more. The only disadvantage is social: most people don't rate this way, so a 3 or 3.5 star rating is likely to be interpreted as negative. People who read my reviews must wonder why I'm giving 3.5 stars to a book that I seem to be enthusiastically endorsing.
Loved your review - or biography - of Trainspotting.

Trish
Rockin' the Right sounds like a ridiculous book. I don't understand how people can label music as "conservative" or "liberal" or why they would want to. Music is for everyone to enjoy. Although I had always heard that George Harrison wrote Taxman because he hated to pay British taxes. The man defintely was not a conservative.
Great review of Rockin' the Right. All the best from way out in the country!
"This is filthy and shameless"

Oh, so true. And sadly, very successful...the co-opting of pop culture is an old totalitarian trick, and it never seems to fail.

I Sigh. Wonderful job, Martin, and thumbs up from my slef-loathing liberal self.

RMD
Thanks so much. I keep thinking that phrase doesn't make sense, but yet it does.
Hey, Martin.
You're welcome. I read most every one of your reviews (even the ones that have glottal in the title), you have a point of view and a voice.
Best Wishes,
Stuart
Not a problem. I think I can get that volume through ILL resources. Thanks for the references.
I started recording my reading in composition books several decades ago, so I sympathize with your use of LT to keep notes of everything that strikes a chord. It's a great practice.
Before you blow away...

I tried to wishlist Nicholas Hudson's Theories of Language, and had no luck.
Any suggestions?
Thanks!

Ruth M.
forgot to tell you how much I enjoyed your review of Byron. But here is one penis I think you missed:

http://thelectern.blogspot.com/2009/12/inadvertent-obscenity-10.html

(actually from Beppo, but I thought you would enjoy it anyway.)
Lol, hello. I love your book profile!
Oh yeah! Shit, I forgot to reply earlier! Or I'm just lazy and stalling. Or just panicking. One of those.

I'm a little overwhelmed by the trail after studying it a bit. It sounds (a) expensive (I think I read it was like $180 for a 5-day trek? or thereabouts?) and (b) really complicated to set up a hike. My friend and I are kind of having a wing-it attitude as we do with most of our trips, so we don't really know when we're going. The plan right now is to go to Skagway in Alaska and stay for 2-4 weeks at a family friend's house, and do the trail on the way back. But to be honest, even though my brother who knows the folks in Alaska assure me it'll happen, he's so fucking unreliable I feel like it's going to fall through. And if it falls through...we have a couple options that we probably wouldn't settle on until the last minute: (1) Travel north anyway and stay for less time--definitely stop by Hyder, AK and get "Hyderized"--(2) Go to the east coast and edges of Canada and back to Washington as originally planned, (3)....uh...do some sort of lesser combination, e.g., go into Canada around WA but not too far, e.g., go east, but not too far east, like Milwaukee or something. Who knows, maybe we'll start traveling, and then just know we'll be back in two weeks and ready to hike.

As you can tell, I'm still being overwhelmed by the options right now and very indecisive. I also don't know about my friend's odd school schedule. I think we'll both be ready to do traveling in mid-May, but something about his mother visiting might put it off until June, possibly even July (though unlikely).

Do you need to book your trip pretty far in advance? A couple weeks or something? And not be allowed to change it? (The one and only place I've really hiked at did say we could relax a bit about the schedule, but only change it by a couple days.) I was looking at the rest of the Pacific Rim N.P. and thinking if we can't do that trail we could at least do some of the free day hikes or whatever around Long Beach. (At least I think they are free day hikes....Man, a lot of the sources I read seemed to have conflicting information.)

This is how I've been doing my trips the past couple years. Really spontaneous. I've never been a huge fan of planning ahead--but I guess we have to for the Big Hike.

Also if you have suggestions for stuff we could do in and around Canada.... ;D

Ewww, man, Vegas....I got dragged there all the time as a kid. Seems like such a cruel place to take kids now that I look back on it. "Here's $100 have fun all day in the arcade while I go gamble," my dad would say. Gambling.... *shudder* I'll never understand it.
Stat whore! Love it. I've input a few periodicals here and there that mean something to me personally. At one point I began cataloguing my Nat'l Geographics from the '70s but my that got tedious after about 20 or so, so I discontinued that. Why not start a Journal Article Collection or Professional Papers Collection or whatever you want to call it? Especially if they're a resource you can return to later. Who's business is it anyway if you quadruple your collection. I've seen users, individually, input thousands of ebooks of late. Your collection of speech pathology articles could actually become a resource for someone, potentially, at a future date, if you want to look at it that way. I'm all for being a stat whore. You seen how many tags I have? I'm in the top 25 Most Tags in LibraryThing, and quite proud!
Holy cow Son! That William Wilberforce is a rather long title, eh? But not as long as some of the chapter titles in IJ! Over 500 reviews now! Wow. Memo to me to drop by more often! Seems you'd just surpassed 400 thereabouts last time I was around.
Thanks for the review and the comments on the thread. I will spend some time with your other postings. I'm curious about the Brideshead review, which someone below found at odds with your rating. You seem to come at stuff from some interesting angles.

Alex
What's with all the comics? NNNNEEEERRRRRRRDDDDDDDDD!!1

No but seriously, still no time to join in on Faulkner, huh? :( I shouldn't be talkin', tho. I still haven't gotten to LIA.

How's that Vancouver, eh? A friend and I have been mapping out our next trip, definitely doing the northeast US states, but from there, we don't know yet. Either along the northern states with some Canadian stops, or full out CANADACANADACANADA.
HAHAHA "Batter my heart, and fry it in hell!"

Oh lordy lordy. Yeah don't bother with Ayn Rand.
I enjoy all your reviews very much. That piece on Donne: excellent.

Batter my heart!
you did not! it's a lot more fun than the facebook thing :D and A LOT more useful! Glad to be here!
Just Updated my profile :P
And after that? . . . .
I think the Kemelist production of Irene has potential but only if you throw in some Brechtian elements. Break the fourth wall. Shake people out of their complacency. You want the audience to rise up and storm into the streets in revolt of the ties that bind them to corruption.
So are you saying the guy you know is not a "plomber" but a uni-bomber or something of that ilk :-)
oh and here is the book: http://www.amazon.com/Shah-Namah-Kings-Forgotten-Books/dp/1605067857
Thanks! Now I know I have something awesome to read on the plane!
http://enel.ucalgary.ca/People/far/hobbies/iran/shahnameh.html
Strongly recommend reading this!
Ignore Murr,

He contracted acute glottal skew from his gynecologist. His proctologist was treating his chronic dynamic leakage, but our good friend Murr scratched his face. Now the proctologist hides under Murr's couch and sings Wagner to calm himself.

Irene??? I am crushed. I thought I was the only person on LT who had read this play. I feel so emasculated and I seem to have misplaced my aplomb. Currently looking for a plomber to help me locate it.
This made me chuckle!

http://www.kli.org/scholarship/
Dear Doctor
I think I have a bad case of chronic dynamic leakage compounded with acute glottal skew. it is severely affecting my social life.

Please help. I am desperate.

Murr.
Hi Martin, was it you who mentioned Kendall's The Gammage Cup awhile back? I got around to reading it and reviewed it here: http://www.librarything.com/review/44465523. It didn't catch me young enough, I think.
"I can't decide if their sameness--the run-on sentences, the rudimentary punctuation, etc.--is a flaw of West's craft or simply a black nod to the banality of suffering."

The latter. He was a competent craftsman, and a pretty good artist. Excellent review! Happy New Year.
Cheers
Done.
Shall we move on books? We will most likely not be chummy, at least we can be civil. As I speak a lot of rot, I probably should have let that comment pass, whether it was directed at me or not. BTW your CLAREL thing was quite good. Have yourself a very merry Christmas.
Brilliant! Brilliant! BRILLIANT! review of Clarel (probably even better than the poem, by all accounts).

LT friends!! I didn't know we had this function. It's like Facebook all over again, but with fewer obnoxious applications asking you to plant flowers or stab demons.

You know, it's funny, I certainly drink frequently and happily when left to my own devices, but I'm not a social drinker at all. I'm much too paranoid that I'll end up in A Situation, whatever that means. I recall that for my 17th birthday my mother gave me five bottles of assorted liquor (an unprecedented act of resignation) and my response was to refuse the blessed booze. She was taken aback - "But I thought this was what you wanted all along!" - and only more aback when I explained to her that I just didn't want to risk any rohypnol.
You're kidding! damn technology.
You know TE Lawrence rewrote 7 Pillars of wisdom coz he left the only manuscript copy on a train?

Perseverance is the name of the game.
Wow! Totally impressive!
Holy bananas, son. Only 30 pages into Flags in the Dust, but the change from his first two books is just BAM! a kick to the nuts.
Very nice review on Hour of the Star. I'd give it more thumbs if I could.
I don't think your points would have been nearly as well taken nor understood had you not shared.
belva
Just wanted to congratulate you for your HOT REVIEW on "My Husband's Affair Became the Best Thing That Ever Happened to Me". Well done and I think I must find this one.
Thanx,
belva
it's not a kid's book, no matter how well read and mature the kid. try it again, and read it slowly. James is always a very slow read.
Thank you. it is indeed a shame, as there are great pleasures to be gained from old Henry. I admit that the later stuff takes a certian kind of ......perverted pleasure to enjoy. Have you tried the early, shorter, works? The Turn of the Screw, the Aspen Papers? The Princess Cassamassia?
Personally, I thought "The Baron in the Trees" was brilliant.

And I can't remember ever laughing so hard at a review as at yours of "Language and Sexuality". What other little quirks and gewgaws can we describe with math? *residual chuckle*
Nice work, Brolemite. (Did you take the rating down even further, to boot? Yowch. Seriously glad I skipped that b.)
Huh, I thought you were enjoying the Octopus...?
Martin,

I am fairly new to Enrique's Salon and it is thrilling me. So, today I discover that you have Baron in the Trees in the Top Ten books of all time. I am now two thirds of the way through, and just beginning to have my doubts about it. I love Mr. Palomar, and was prepared to love The Baron, but with a sinking heart I am thinking, "surely this is more than just a fable, surely he will expand it." Reassure me. Tell me that it is great and why. Let's talk!! (I also like books that spin me right around and I want The Baron to do it, please.)
You crazy angel-headed bastard. You have so many favorite authors. (And you for serious have an NB shirt? Woahoahoah. That's just like, weird.)

How's it--going--man?
Hi, Martin!

I've been invited to join a group read of Master & Margarita here on LT, and decided to pass the link on to you:

http://www.librarything.com/groups/thequestforthelastpa

They already have some very interesting posts comparing the quality of different M&M translations, though the actual group read doesn't start until September.

Since you've just read M&M it may be interesting for you to check out the discussion. I plan on reading along in Russian and joining in when I can, though I probably won't be very active until October (September is a travel-heavy month for me: 1st Burning Man, then a trip to Moscow all in the same month!)

Let me know if you decide to participate..
Take care!
~Paulina
My pleasure. I enjoy your reviews: they're insightful, and the insights are expressed in just the right mix of high and low diction. I look forward to reading more.
I really, really enjoyed your Gravity's Rainbow review. It made me laugh out loud when I was otherwise grumpy and exhausted. Thanks!
Hi, Martin! I've been meaning to comment on your Master & Margarita review for a while, but life got in the way. Sorry for the delay, but here goes:

I really liked the way you picked up on Moscow's cultural milieu, especially what you referred to as the "bourgeoisie" element. However, I'd make one corrective in this regard: at the time this book was written, the bourgeoisie concept had been replaced by the term "intelligentsia." The bourgeoisie, with their "old world-manners," are associated more with Pushkin's time (the time period when upper crust Russian society all spoke French - hence the existence of my Russified French name :)

It is interesting to note that during the communist USSR period, Russians could not distinguish themselves with material status objects because everyone was in the same boat financially, so learning and intellectuality became the main status symbols. Books in particular (especially censored books!) were the main source of pride in most families, and intelligentsia households proudly displayed their "book wealth" on neatly crowded shelves.

The intelligentsia concept seems touching in its purity and naiveness, especially when compared to today's Moscow filled with endless bling, opulent glamor and decadent oligarchs. Still, average Russians continue to place high value on learning and culture, while statistically they read a lot more than their western counterparts. This just goes to show that the communist cloud also had a silver lining, despite the many obvious shortcomings.
LOL, Martin, your Rolling Stone review was funny... but also kind of sad and sentimental. I think the twittering about life that you brought up is really symptomatic of our whole slacker generation. But don't feel bad - as they say, today's 30s are really the new 20s! And when I look around I see that its really true and not a bunch of rhetoric: people are now looking younger, they're having careers and getting married later, hell they're even getting acne later ("adult onset" LOL). Take care!
~Paulina
Martin,
That helped tremendously. Puts a whole new spin on the book and the writing of it for me.
Thank you for taking the time to explain some of what I did not understand.
belva
Hello Martin;
Given the review you wrote for "Brideshead Revisited", do you really find it deserving of five stars? Not to be snide, but did I miss something? And if so, how will I know? (Please don't reassure me and suggest that I read it again)
Everyone out there having read or reading it seems to love it and I simply didn't.
I just finished reading it this morning and when I read your review, I thought: "Right on!!" but I am probably only going to give it a 2 1/2 or 3 star rating.
Just askin' about the 5 stars.
Thanx for your time, I hope I've not offended you and that you have a great day.
belva
Hi!
Oh, Lord Whimsy. An amusing read! Of course you can borrow! :)
Sounds like fun - I'd be very interested to read it, once it's done.
Glad you like the blog, too!
Hi,

Of course you can - provided you attribute the quote! ;-) Is it going online, or is it for something else?

Great library, by the way!
See ya!!! :)
sweet!! i love commercial :) and you're taking english? how's that? what school are you at? sorry to hear about your cats - are they in vic? best wishes - and yes, hopefully we'll run into each other soon!!! :)
i am working at the women's sexual assault center, as a prevention educator, and generally keeping busy :) i'm vying for a cat in addition to the two dogs in my house and planning a move into the basement of my dad's place. still in vic. how about you?
Yes, totally! It was really neat to see you on here - I just randomnly found it in my search for new books to read! :)
Well, Rochester and Darcy are certainly two different poles of the romantic hero. Rochester sweats, shouts, practically threatens Jane with physical violence and then almost kills himself before turning to God. He reminds me of my English prof's description of a Byronic hero as, quintessentially, "standing around in a ruined abbey in a cape, drinking blood from a skull and all that".

Darcy is, in a way, doing much the same thing on his own scale. I think they're similar in that both men find their better selves through the heroines. Rochester talks about feeling a new sap steal through his frame upon meeting Jane. First, those plans for self-improvement (paving hell with great energy) are doomed to failure, as they depend on deception and sin, but later, he truly reforms himself. Darcy is equally walled in - not by Rochester's dashing life of dissipation, but by custom, pride, and humourlessness. Elizabeth revives him.
Between Pride & Prejudice and Jane Eyre - oh god, how can I choose? I love Elizabeth and Jane for different reasons. As someone more articulate than I said, Elizabeth is like one of Shakespeare's heroines - merry, graceful, witty, and wise. Jane is passionate, stark, and inflexibly self-respecting. All that quiet mousy governess business is just protective colouration for her savage soul.

Jane Eyre's first half is also all about a courtship dance between an arrogant aristocrat and a lesser gentlewoman - it's just that Rochester is desperately needy and manipulative, and Darcy is just insular, and a bit of a jerk on the surface. Darcy has to grow up a little, but Rochester has to grow up a *lot*. Both have to become worthy of their women, and Rochester has much farther to go.

It's the second half of Jane Eyre that marks the real difference between the novels, I think. It's a maturation process for both Jane and Rochester. Sigh. I'm going to start rambling, and I have a doctor's appointment. Adieu for now.

Wow, Martin, yet another thought-provoking review (Jane Eyre)!

Personally, I can see the merits of both Jane and Pride, but if I had to pick a fave it would definitely be the latter.

One gap in your theory about women preferring the sure-thing male partner (really "having the heart" of the one they love, as you put it) is women's attraction to the "bad boy" image. How many times have you heard a girl say that a guy is too nice/brotherly/just a friend?

Personally, I see Rochester as an inherently needy personality: all of the growling and flailing around is just a cover for his wounded soul. And contrary to popular belief, there's a significant section of the female population NOT turned on by the prospect of nursing a wounded male ego for the rest of his life.

So in my view these two love stories boil down to:
A couple of wounded souls NEEDING each other
VS.
A couple of self-sufficient individuals CHOOSING to be together.

As a strong woman, I definitely prefer the latter!
When you enter a book for mooching, you add "Condition" notes so other members can see what they're getting. Everyone is different in what is acceptable to them. For me, acceptable condition changes from book to book (I search out a copy in excellent condition if I'm sure this book will be a "keeper," but for most books I really don't care as long as they're not falling apart because I probably won't keep them). Some people can be anal about books they mooch coming from smoking households, or those with pets, due to "allergies."

There is quite a diverse group of Bookmoochers here on LT:
http://www.librarything.com/groups/bookmooching
All the books I've read have star ratings; this one is in my "TO READ" category, among 54 others(!)

I have so many unread books due to my activity in Bookmooch (http://bookmooch.com/). If you don't know about this site, I highly recommend it: it has changed my library, if not my life!

Currently, I'm reading Atwood's "Blind Assassin" and chiseling away at Paglia's "Sex, Art, and American Culture."

Have you read Underworld?
It's probably my favorite in the past 2-3 years..
I do have some reviews, actually (though they tend to be brief):
http://www.librarything.com/profile_reviews.php?view=PrincessPaulina

Do you speak Russian??
I really get a kick out of reading your reviews!
~Paulina
Hey - I love you review of Screwtape, too.
Noble devils - have you read Paradise Lost? And read Lewis' A preface to Paradise Lost' - now considered out-of-date, but he's much closer to understanding Milton (because he understands where he was coming from) than the 'modern' critics. My tutor told me I couldn't understand Milton or George Herbert because I am a Christian! He said it clouded my judgement. Of course, the truth is, that despite knowing far more, he was hampered by not knowing the very thing that was most dear to them. I look forward to reading more of your reviews.
P
I did like your review of Brideshead (especially as my father was a Special Constable in the General Strike...) But I so know what you mean about the terrible injustice "that prevents us all from being aristocrats in our own selves" - somehow it's not enough to have the sensibility...
I can't tell you exactly what I mean, but it struck a chord.
Nice meeting you.
P
I don't believe that I agree wholly with what you had to say about Don DeLillo's 'Cosmopolis.'

But I wanted to drop a line to say that you wrote a bang-up and not exactly scathing but certainly seething review of it, which I enjoyed reading.

And a general hey, hi, hello to anyone else who is aware that 'The Sot-Weed Factor' is one of the funniest series of words ever set on paper.
Your reviews on hadith-related reading caught my eye -- how goes the magnum opus? I was wondering if you've read Abu Jafar al-Tabari's interp of 3:7 ('He it is who revealed the book to you; in it are the clear verses -- they are the mother of the book -- and the others are the unclear verses.') I came across an excerpt in 'Textual Sources for the Study of Islam' (eds Rippin and Knappert, 1986) this evening and thought of you.

Hope the writing goes well! :)
Hey you! I've been thinking about your paper ideas; sorry this reply is so long in coming. Have your plans changed/narrowed/expanded any in the meanwhile...? My initial thought was about the Quran itself, and the emphasis on there having been corruptions of God's earlier message (to the Jews, Christians) that needed to be corrected. There's the poetic quality of it too, and how that relates to the whole oral tradition. Do any other major religious works rhyme so much in their original languages? I'm not sure, and I'm not familiar with the phrase 'reported speech' or however you put it either, but I'd be happy to offer more ideas if my thinking is even halfway on an interesting track.

Ooh. And another thing: ijtihad (or however people transliterate it) and how when specific applications are unclear, those who attempt are said to get rewarded twice if their result is right, but still earn one reward if they do it incorrectly.

Anyway. I feel like my ramblings don't hold a candle to yours. But if you've got additional info/plans to report, I'd be happy to share more ideas. And more promptly this time, I promise! :)

Hi Martin
Thanks for accepting my friend invitation. Since you're doing an MA in the English language, you might enjoy my novel Conceit. I tried to use only words that were in use in 17th century England, and hope I succeeded. :-) I have the New Shorter Oxford English Dictionary on disk, and it was exceedingly handy. I have a couple of degrees from UBC as well and live in Vancouver.
Mary
Best wishes with all you're up to this fall!
Always nice to find other fans of Cornwell. I'm currently finishing up the Saxon Chronicles. Still have Lords of the North and Sword Song to read.

And of course, you have to love CS Lewis and JRR Tolkien.

Steven
http://steventill.com
...my pleasure!
Happy reading.
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