Category Archives: book notes

Rustling paper nightmare

Have you ever felt afraid, and not known exactly why you were afraid? The rational part of you will tell you there’s nothing to be afraid of, but the terror still lurks around the corner, in the shadows of your mind. That terror is the terror of nightmare, when the rational mind is asleep or […]

Neil Gaiman’s “American Gods” – a personal response

I recently read British horror-fantasy writer Neil Gaiman’s epic (600+ pages) novel, American Gods. A thoroughly good read. Gaiman knows how to tell a story all right. This was my third Gaiman novel,  and I read it immediately after finishing the first two (Coraline and Marvel 1602: 10th Anniversary Edition). This one was a little […]

D-Day +1

June 6th was the 71st anniversary of D-Day and the Normandy landings of 1944., dubbed the largest amphibian military assault in history. 156,000 troops landed on a 50-mile stretch of the French Normandy coastline on the morning of June 6th.  A large complex deception plan was enacted to deceive the Germans about exactly where and […]

Getting your Kindle book notes into Evernote

Do you read books on Kindle or a Kindle app on an iPad or similar device? Do you want to make notes or highlight passages in your ebooks but don’t know how? Would you like to have access to all your notes and highlighted passages even when you don’t have your Kindle or iPad with […]

Jane Eyre Movie Trailer Official HD – YouTube

Update: Though she would never have put it so indelicately, in this quote (from a letter, August 16, 1849 ), Charlotte Brönte kicks ass, with spirit and decision! I do not respect an inconsistent critic. He says, ‘if Jane Eyre be the production of a woman, she must be a woman unsexed.’ In that case […]

The Promise/The Chosen

Image by giveawayboy via Flickr I recently read Chaim Potok‘s The Promise, and am now reading the book that preceded it, The Chosen. These are the first books by Potok I have ever read. I had never heard of Potok until a week or so ago. Then I read an article that mentioned Potok in […]

Intellectuals 4 – what are they?

What is an intellectual? Johnson makes a clear distinction between writers, artists, men of letters on the one hand and intellectuals on the other. Of course, a person could be both, and Edmund Wilson is a good example: someone who started out as purely a writer, then became an intellectual, then gave that up and returned […]

Intellectuals 3 – Brecht and Sartre

Intellectuals 3 – Brecht and Sartre (Part 1 here, and part 2 here.) I’ve just finished chapter 9 Sartre (I’m not blogging about Hemingway chapter 6 or Bertrand Russell chapter 8). Would you believe it? Sartre and Brecht were complete bastards, especially to their women, just like Rousseau, Shelley, Tolstoy, Ibsen and Karl Marx! (Why did […]

Intellectuals 2 – Tolstoy

This post is about Paul Johnson’s book “Intellectuals” and follows an earlier post on the first few chapters of that book. In the chapter on Tolstoy, we read that the “great man” was, like all the others  in this book so far, undoubtedly a great writer, but also an egotistical monster, a liar, an ungrateful scoundrel. […]

Intellectuals? Bah, humbug!

In his book Intellectuals, Paul Johnson takes a close look at some key figures of modern times whose thoughts and writings have had a huge effect on people’s thinking for a long time, right down to today. Johnson examines the personal lives of these famous men (Lillian Hellman is the only female intellectual in this book), and […]