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Philharmonic Autocrat 1: The Discography of Herbert von Karajan by John Hunt

The Complete Films of Laurence Olivier by Jerry Vermilye

Life and Letters Vol. 6, No. 33; February 1931 by Desmond MacCarthy

The Travel Books by W. Somerset Maugham

Purely for My Pleasure by W. Somerset Maugham

Cakes and Ale by W. Somerset Maugham

Princess September by W. Somerset Maugham

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Member: Waldstein

CollectionsTennessee Williams (16), Somerset Maugham (100), William Shakespeare (39), Arthur C. Clarke (61), Bernard Shaw (27), Bertrand Russell (63), Your library (848), Currently reading (8), Read but unowned (14), All collections (862)

Reviews408 reviews

TagsMusic (127), PDF (67), Maugham Prefaces (48), About Shakespeare (48), Essays (45), Maugham Short Stories (40), German (40), Shakespeare Plays (40), Penguin Classics (39), Biography (38) — see all tags

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Recommendations55 recommendations

About meI am an ordinary biochemist who tries to confirm/reject some simple scientific hypotheses. English, obviously, is not my first language but it is the one that I speak and read most often; sometimes I even think in English. I am deeply concious how bad it really is, but I am constantly working to improve it.

I have loved reading books since I can remember myself as a personality. Unfortunately, I have found the real power of reading, namely to form and change this very personality, much later and now I have a lot of reading to catch up on. In reading I seek a pleasurable experience and escape of reality, as well as philosophy of living in this very reality and enriching my personality. Literature as an art is probably the best way to achieve all this - or at least to try.

In addition to reading, I love listening to music, mainly but not only classical, and visiting as many places as I have time and money for.

I am not a sociable person. I don't like people and they don't like me. So we are even. This may be a drawback - and it might be not a minor one - of reading/listening carefully and thoughtfully to some of the greatest masterpieces written by some of the greatest minds in the human history. One of the many consequences is that the human beings around me start looking pretty boring creatures who can offer nothing whatsoever I could possible care for. I am in the bad habit of being blunt and candid which most people accept as rude and evil. But as my favourite writer, Somerset Maugham, once wrote:

"I wish no one to take me for other than I am, and on the other hand I see no need to accept others' pretences."

About my libraryIt is a very modest one with a modest ambition to grow in the future. For now I have stopped expanding it for one simple reason: the number of unread books is really shameful. I read slowly and thoughtfully, I like to imagine and experience everything I read to the fullest degree I can. I have read a little but I venture to claim that I have read it well. I hope this will remain so in future. My favourite books are those which bear rereading and rediscovering from time to time.

I have no special reading preferences except that I do not read fantasy (I read little enough in my youth to realise it is definitely not what I want to read anymore). I love books which stimulate my imagination, poor as it may be, and make me think deeply about myriad of things. But I do want the books I read to be also readable and understandable and, last but certainly not least, enjoyable. I have little patience with tortured and convoluted styles and such books rarely come into my library and never stay for long. From time to time I read books purely for pleasure, books that are not designed to make you think but just to give you some fun. Since I enjoy them a great deal I couldn't care less that many people would describe them as "trash". In addition to various types of fiction, I love reading non-fiction from many other areas than my profesional one, mainly natural history as well as ancient, medieval and modern history of mankind.

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Groupsfriends of Maugham

Favorite authorsDavid Attenborough, W. H. Auden, Jane Austen, Lord Byron, Arthur C. Clarke, Deryck Cooke, Michael Crichton, A. J. Cronin, Charles Darwin, C. E. Eckersley, Arthur Hailey, G. B. Harrison, William Hazlitt, Thor Heyerdahl, W. Somerset Maugham, Guy de Maupassant, Bertrand Russell, Harold C. Schonberg, William Shakespeare, George Bernard Shaw, John Steinbeck, Irving Stone, Gore Vidal, Alan Walker, Oscar Wilde, Tennessee Williams (Shared favorites)


Real nameAlexander Arsov

Account typepublic, lifetime

URLs /profile/Waldstein (profile)
/catalog/Waldstein (library)

Member sinceSep 11, 2009

Currently readingMiddlemarch by George Eliot
Moby-Dick by Herman Melville
Famous American Stories by Karl Heinz Wirzberger
Modern English Short Stories II by Hans-Christian Oeser
Modern English Short Stories III by Hans-Christian Oeser
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