Tuesday, July 25, 2006


So...I realize (after reading a couple of comments), that I might have sounded a bit harsh on "1984". It wasn't that I didn't like the book, it was that I felt bogged down in the middle section (Goldstein's book). It actually reminded me of why I don't enjoy Ann Rand; her whole montage for pages just drives me nuts.

I liked the beginnings of the novel, the idea that Winston knows what he's doing is wrong-especially the photograph of the three framed party members, the first meeting with Julia, the shop owner (I've forgotten his name). I'd actually forgotten how they'd gotten caught, so him being a member of the Thought Police was a nice "surprise". I liked the ending too, well, the part where O'Brian is trying to convince Winston that four is five...it reminded me (Oh God) from an episode of Star Trek: TNG (Oh God) where Picard has been captured by the Romulains (Oh God) and he's being tortured and to get it to stop, all he has to say is that there are five lights (there are four).

(Yes, I used to watch Star Trek: TNG. I like Patrick Steward; he rocks. And I was 15. Wesley was cute.)

Anyway. I think what I didn't like was the idea of living like that. Where you had no say, no voice, no hope. You couldn't read, write, love, have a life. That scares me, which did colour my overall impression of the book. I think that "1984" is going to be put up there along with "The Grapes of Wrath" on my "well written, descriptive, thought provoking, but never want to read again" list.

Saturday, July 22, 2006


Oh my...it's hot. It's supposed to be somewhat of a record heat weekend for us here in Seattle. In fact, it's as hot in my apartment as it is outside of it...maybe hotter.

But that's not important right now.


What's important is the fact that I have, just now, finally, on the 5th week, finished 1984.


Let's take a second shall we, the heat is making me faint. Or maybe that's hunger.

I just, this book...dry. Especially the middle, where we're reading Goldstein's book and that dry and long and lecturing and so not keeping me focused. I enjoyed more the parts where Winston (and Julia) are "disobeying" Big Brother, living their lives, or trying too.

I don't think I'll ever be able to make myself read this again; I've pretty much forced myself to finish the last half of it. Seriously, once we started reading Goldstein's book...it all went down hill.

That said, I'm glad I did read it. Really. It's a rather interesting novel, with some rather bleak subject matter.

And for the record, if we were living in that 1984, I'd want to be a prole.

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Follow up

A few months ago, I read "The Bookseller of Kabul" for my real life book club. I can't say that I liked or related to this book (it's the story of one family's life in Kabul), but it was interesting. Last I'd heard, the bookseller was suing the author because of the way he'd been portrayed.

Bookseller of Kabul's wife applies for asylum

gacked from bookslut

Saturday, July 15, 2006

1984, by George Orwell

Freedom is the freedom to say that two plus two equals four. If that is granted, all else follows.

1984, page 69

It's been stuck in my head since I read it.

Saturday, July 08, 2006

Don't get used to this.

Grandma's kicking new hair....

And an old heh, 2 weeks self-taken picture of my own. It's much, well, duller would be the word I'd choose, now, less bright. It's still fun and different, but I liked it the deeper, kick you in the face color that it was in the picture.

It would have been wonderful

Oh, how I slack.

I have just now (well, actually last night) caught up with your (incredibly prolific, damn you) posts from the last three weeks.

It's really putting me off righting my own...which will read something like this:

SRC Update
Right. I finished the second book (Wives and Daughters) back on June 27th and it was just okay. The story was interesting (all about Molly Gibson's life), but I don't think that I enjoyed it. Molly was too much a pushover for me to relate too. She didn't really ever speak up about her feelings or wants, instead, she just let everyone decide things for her. That's not to say she didn't stand up for the people she cared about, because she did, just never really for herself. My other complaint is that the book was never finished, due to the author's untimely death. Granted, I knew that before I started reading the book, but it was still disappointing not to have it "finished". (Her editor/publisher was someone that she corresponded with regularly, so he put in something of a postscript after her death, so at least we get to know how and where she was going to end her novel.)

So yes, book 2 was finished on week 5 (Yea gods, I'm so behind) and I started book 3, "The Beautiful and the Damned" by F.Scott Fitzgerald. And oh, how I despise it. I tried to read it, really. I tried to imagine myself in the '20s, all full of illegal alcohol and idleness....but all it made me do was drink. Or want to drink, depending on where I was reading. Anthony and Gloria were some of the most boring, self-centered, and annoying main characters I've ever tried to read. I managed to get halfway through the book, but on Tuesday, I had to put it down.

Which means that I've got to know read my first alternate..."Paradise Lost". I think.

But in the meantime, I've picked up book 3, "1984" by George Orwell...and book 4, "Animal Farm". Well, I tried to pick up book 4... See, it was a book sale purchase, so I didn't peruse it at the time. I just grabbed it and went...and found out on Wednesday that the first 27 pages were gone. So now I've got to read my second alternate too..."Woman in White". And...jump to book 5 (while reading book 3 still), "The House of Mirth".

Sigh. I so called it. I knew it was going to be like this.

Other readings

Um, have there been any? Oh right...

"Captain Alatriste" was just...okay. Not thrilled like it, at least not how I wanted to be. I'm a big fan of the author, but it seems like every fourth book or so, he writes something that I just can not get into, which disappoints me. However, this is the first book in a series, so I'm thinking I might give the second book a chance. Maybe. I've got a year or so to think about it.

"Skinner's Drift" was also okay. Again, not wowed by it, but it was something of an interesting read, as I've never read anything set in South Africa before. It was written from the point of view both before and after apartheid, again, a subject I haven't read much on. I think that was the most interesting part...the story didn't really grab me either.

And I read the last of "The Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants" books...which was again, eh. (Is it me?) It ended the trilogy nicely, but I was expecting certain things to happen, which didn't, based on the way the first two books were written. Still, I'm not unhappy with it...and I've heard rumors that they're going to continue the series.

"Black Powder War" was good. (That's right..I'd nearly forgotten I'd read that.) I didn't enjoy it as much as the first two, but we were introduced to a bunch of new characters, including a pack of feral dragons (hee, they were fun). The French seem to be winning the war though, and as an enemy of Teremarie is helping them...well, let's just say that it got almost ugly there. But they live.

As for the library books...I'm giving up the ghost on them. I've returned nearly all of them by this point, and I did little more than scan the titles for most of them. I'm going to implement a new policy once I've gotten through them all. No more than 2 books checked out from the library at a time. This means that I put no more than 2 books on hold at a time and if I have to wait 5 weeks to get a book, so be it. I have more than enough books here to keep me busy. (And I'm really behind on my knitting!)

That's how the post would go, if I was writing it. The SRC forum update would be something similar too...although I might have to flesh it out a bit, explain more why I despised "The Beautiful and the Damned" a bit more.

Which I'm not. Maybe tomorrow I'll write it.

P.S. Grandma is still doing good. Tragically though, the purple is all gone. Sad really.