ghost of miles

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There is also another series of books by Carlos Ruiz Zafón about the Civil War in Barcelona that are supposed to be good.  

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Funny you should mention that. The third or maybe fourth was reviewed in the weekend paper (yes I went analogue) and sounded quite intriguing

here's the review, it is the fourth instalment

https://www.theguardian.com/books/2018/sep/14/labyrinth-spirits-carlos-ruiz-zafon-cemetery-forgotten-books-quartet-final-review

I remember the first instalment was hyped so much over here that I ended up ignoring it!  I might try it now.

Do you read these novels in the Spanish or translation?

(Also, as an aside I passed on the Sid Lowe book about Barca/Real to a football mad friend today so your recommendation still bears fruit)

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I think I may have seen that review; I ordered the first one. 

Unfortunately, I’m probably not good enough to read it in Spanish. I’ve started the Civil War History in Spanish but am not making too much headway, yet. My father, who was self taught, used to read a lot of books in Spanish. He even read Don Quijote in Spanish. 

Hope your friend likes the book. 

Edited by Brad

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The Year of Our Lord 1943: Christian Humanism in an Age of Crisis by Alan Jacobs. Very interesting book, with applications to the modern world and politics.

 

From the Amazon description:

By early 1943, it had become increasingly clear that the Allies would win the Second World War. Around the same time, it also became increasingly clear to many Christian intellectuals on both sides of the Atlantic that the soon-to-be-victorious nations were not culturally or morally prepared for their success. A war won by technological superiority merely laid the groundwork for a post-war society governed by technocrats. These Christian intellectuals-Jacques Maritain, T. S. Eliot, C. S. Lewis, W. H. Auden, and Simone Weil, among others-sought both to articulate a sober and reflective critique of their own culture and to outline a plan for the moral and spiritual regeneration of their countries in the post-war world.

51ioO1IuMdL._SX331_BO1,204,203,200_.jpg

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How Fibber McGee and Molly Won World War II by Mickey Smith. Well, of course they didn't win the war themselves, but the radio show helped the morale of a heck of a lot of people durning the war years. It's an enjoyable bedtime read about my favorite Old Time Radio show. 

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Sad to report back that I am just not enjoying von Rezzori's The Death of My Brother Abel.  I had high hopes for it, since I enjoyed An Ermine in Czernopol a lot.  But this is an extremely meandering and frankly boring post-modern tale about how the narrator (a hack who churns out movie scripts) cannot get around to writing the massive roman a clef he has in his mind's eye (which is of course what the reader is holding in his/her hands).  I'm bloody-minded enough to stick this out, but I am much, much less interested in the forthcoming translation of Kain (his final novel) as it is just a continuation of this.

Looking like it will be Mahfouz's Midaq Alley next.  Then some Thomas Hardy and William Faulkner (going back to the canon).

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On 9/23/2018 at 0:08 PM, Matthew said:

The Year of Our Lord 1943: Christian Humanism in an Age of Crisis by Alan Jacobs. Very interesting book, with applications to the modern world and politics.

 

From the Amazon description:

By early 1943, it had become increasingly clear that the Allies would win the Second World War. Around the same time, it also became increasingly clear to many Christian intellectuals on both sides of the Atlantic that the soon-to-be-victorious nations were not culturally or morally prepared for their success. A war won by technological superiority merely laid the groundwork for a post-war society governed by technocrats. These Christian intellectuals-Jacques Maritain, T. S. Eliot, C. S. Lewis, W. H. Auden, and Simone Weil, among others-sought both to articulate a sober and reflective critique of their own culture and to outline a plan for the moral and spiritual regeneration of their countries in the post-war world.

51ioO1IuMdL._SX331_BO1,204,203,200_.jpg

This and the Fibber McGee and Molly book both look really interesting, Matthew.

Right now:

41p%2BBoxO1%2BL._SX347_BO1,204,203,200_.

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A few Michael Connelly Bosch novels - fun!!

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Recent reading:  The Doomed City by Arkady and Boris Strugatsky - Curiouser and curiouser, a long allegory about people living in a ramshackle artificial state with baboons running loose.  Would people who lived in the Soviet Union 50 years ago undersand this more than we who didn't live there then?  Gotta keep reading the Strugatskys and hope for another as fine as Roadside Picnic.

The Fall by Albert Camus - Very much a post-WW2 attitude, it seems.  His despair doesn't seem to fit 21st century life, however depressing events seem.

Diablerie by Walter Moseley - It's jive.  Granted hard-boiled is artificial, Moseley once could write good hard-boiled, but this mess is padded with the glitz and sex and psychologizing and silly plotting of a writer at the end of his rope.

Reread the script of Mother Courage by Brecht, a breath of fresh air lately.

Anna of the 5 Towns by Arnold Bennett - The over-the-top distant, miser father and emotionally strangled daughter are all too believable, the Methodism of the Edwardian times is familiar from my 1950s boyhood, and the industrial-city setting is horrifying amidst Blake's "dark, satanic mills."

 

 

 

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Sands of the Well by Denise Levertov. Bought this solely because I happened to read the opening poem to this collection: 

What Harbinger?

Glitter of grey

oarstrokes over

the waveless, dark,

secretive water.

A boat is moving

towards me

slowly, but who

is rowing and what 

it brings I can't

yet see.

I think it's a tremendously beautiful poem. Book is highly recommended.

61D1%2B6oxrDL._SX319_BO1,204,203,200_.jp

 

Edited by Matthew

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Isaac Bashevis Singer:  First "The Magician of Lubin" and then "Shosha".   I was expecting something like Fiddler on the Roof. Boy was I wrong.    I found Magician so depressing that I felt I had to read something else to give him another chance.  They're both full of uncommon psychological and philosophical insights (especially about sex),  share many  themes and even have similar structures but Shosha is much more heartening. From these two books I'd say he deserved the Nobel Prize he won. 

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2 hours ago, medjuck said:

Isaac Bashevis Singer:  First "The Magician of Lubin" and then "Shosha".   I was expecting something like Fiddler on the Roof. Boy was I wrong.    I found Magician so depressing that I felt I had to read something else to give him another chance.  They're both full of uncommon psychological and philosophical insights (especially about sex),  share many  themes and even have similar structures but Shosha is much more heartening. From these two books I'd say he deserved the Nobel Prize he won. 

Try to find his autobiographical book Lost In America.  Some of the best writing I've ever experienced:

https://www.amazon.com/Lost-America-Isaac-Bashevis-Singer/dp/0385157568

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Though I wasn't there, McDarrah's photos for the Village Voice always made me feel I was part of it.  They've done a good job of identifying who's in the shots though I was a bit taken aback when they listed Charlie Parker amongst those who performed at the Cafe Bizarre which opened in 1957.  There are no photos of jazz musicians unless you count David Amram and Larry rivers. 

51rjt6czRSL.jpg

Edited by medjuck

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Winds of the Night.jpg

Just finished reading this. It is a continuation of his earlier book, Uncertain Glory, which took place during the Spanish Civil War.  Winds of the Night takes place during the Franco era and shows the hopelessness of that era as the characters struggle to survive in it.  

Edited by Brad

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415xe1UDekL._SX322_BO1,204,203,200_.jpg

A charity shop impulse buy, a quid well-spent

I'm enjoying it a lot; no bull, but a very well-assembled collection of interviews with / recollections from various people who were obviously around at the time.  

Sports biographies are often really dull, but this one is up there with the Leo McKinstry book on Geoff Boycott and the John Hennesy bio of Alex Higgins. Two names possibly largely meaningless to the non-UK board memebrs! 

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A Question of Upbringing by Anthony Powell. Heaven help me, but I've started my fourth go-round on Powell's A Dance To The Music Of Time. It takes a long while to read everything, but at the end, it's always worth it. This is volume one, where a number of important players are introduced, sort of the beginning of a spiders web, where the interlocking of lives develop.

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Also making my way, intermittently, through Ian Ker's biography of John Henry Cardinal Newman (my second time), who still strikes me as an unsympathetic character for some reason.

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2 minutes ago, Matthew said:

A Question of Upbringing by Anthony Powell. Heaven help me, but I've started my fourth go-round on Powell's A Dance To The Music Of Time. It takes a long while to read everything, but at the end, it's always worth it. This is volume one, where a number of important players are introduced, sort of the beginning of a spiders web, where the interlocking of lives develop.

41R6%2BU2pxAL._SX324_BO1,204,203,200_.jp

 

 

I'm hoping to get around to that Powell series at some point--possibly not until I retire, though, which is still a good 15-17 years off.  One of these days I want to re-read Proust's IN SEARCH OF LOST TIME as well, which I plowed through when I was in my 20s.  It would be interesting to give it another go from the perspective of decades added.

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Just started this.

 

kemnji.jpg

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On 10/10/2018 at 3:24 PM, ghost of miles said:

I'm hoping to get around to that Powell series at some point--possibly not until I retire, though, which is still a good 15-17 years off.  One of these days I want to re-read Proust's IN SEARCH OF LOST TIME as well, which I plowed through when I was in my 20s.  It would be interesting to give it another go from the perspective of decades added.

I can just about imagine rereading Powell, though I'd stop at #10, as I feel there is a sharp drop-off in the last two. 

I will never reread Proust.  It was far too much of a slog the first time through.

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4 hours ago, ejp626 said:

I can just about imagine rereading Powell, though I'd stop at #10, as I feel there is a sharp drop-off in the last two. 

I will never reread Proust.  It was far too much of a slog the first time through.

I actually liked the last volume Hearing Secret Harmonies very much, thought it ended the series on a somber, but real note. To my reading, Temporary Kings (volume 11) is a total shambles, advanced nothing in the various story-lines. I'll be interested to see if I'm of the same opinion this time through.

Edited by Matthew

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Keith McCafferty: A Death In Eden

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