Our Sponsor Sideshow Collectibles Send us News
Lord of the Rings Tolkien
Search Tolkien
Lord of The RingsTheOneRing.net - Forged By And For Fans Of JRR Tolkien
Lord of The Rings Serving Middle-Earth Since The First Age

Lord of the Rings Movie News - J.R.R. Tolkien
Do you enjoy the 100% volunteer, not for profit services of TheOneRing.net?
Consider a donation!

  Main Index   Search Posts   Who's Online   Log in
The One Ring Forums: Off Topic: Off Topic:
“Never let your name be found in a dead man’s trousers.”: The Weekly Book Review Thread
First page Previous page 1 2 Next page Last page  View All

a.s.
Valinor


Sep 24 2008, 10:56am

Post #1 of 45 (384 views)
Shortcut
“Never let your name be found in a dead man’s trousers.”: The Weekly Book Review Thread Can't Post

That's the advice from (and first line of) Dr. Hector Carpentier, hero of Louis Bayard's new book The Black Tower. Another successful period mystery from Mr. Bayard, quite intriguing. I even like the ambiguous ending. And it's inspired me to read more about Louis XVII of France, the "lost" Dauphin. Any suggestions on books about Louis XVII? I haven't read any of the books about Marie Antoinette that have been popular these last couple of years, maybe I should start there?

I liked Tower better than The Pale Blue Eye, Bayard's previous book. It's not quite as self-indulgent or wordy. So if you found Eye a little tough going but still intriguing (and I have to admit Eye has forever colored my understanding of Poe and his life) I think you'll enjoy Tower.

I'd also like to recommend Mr. Timothy, Bayard's imagined life of Tim Cratchit caught in a period mystery. VERY good.

Now I'm about half-way through Mountains Beyond Mountains, Tracy Kidder's biography of Dr. Paul Farmer who is dedicated to bringing effective health care to the poor in Haiti (and elsewhere). It's impossible to be ambivalent about Dr. Farmer. So far I have been inspired but wonder how anyone will ever replicate his work or replace him. His success rates are so compelling, however; he makes a good case for providing the same kind of care to the poor that rich Americans can get in Boston. I see why his work (and this book) are inspiring those of us in Public Health and Maternal/Child programs! This book is a sort of classic for many engaged in providing care to the poor, but don't let that stop you! It's a very compelling and interesting book as well.

That's it for me! What about you all? What have you been reading this week?

a.s.

"an seileachan"

Pooh began to feel a little more comfortable, because when you are a Bear of Very Little Brain, and you Think of Things, you find sometimes that a Thing which seemed very Thingish inside you is quite different when it gets out into the open and has other people looking at it.

Call Her Emily


Revie
Rivendell


Sep 24 2008, 11:10am

Post #2 of 45 (180 views)
Shortcut
Loving Frank [In reply to] Can't Post

Loving Frank is a fictionalized account of the life of Mamah Borthwick Cheney and her love affair with the architect Frank Lloyd Wright. The author admits in a postscript that finding any kind of material on Mamah was very difficult - so she did her best to portray their relationship from a patchwork of sources. For me, it was more interesting to observe my emotions toward Mamah as the story progressed. I questioned her choices, wondered at her ability to leave her children to follow after Wright, and stay with him when the sensationalizing press hounded them and vilified her. Do artistic and highly intelligent people answer to a higher calling, that of finding their true selves, than duty to home and children? Or is it all just egotistic blindness to the suffering of the young ones and faithful spouses left behind. What was it like, being an independent woman trying to make her mark in the world during the pre-suffrage era? Nancy Horan sympathetically portrays Mamah's inner world: her ambitions, passions, fears, regrets, and hopes. We can only guess whether she has hit the mark or not.

The ending is all the more tragic and senseless when one realizes that it is probably the best documented and accurate part of the story.

I'm about 100 pages into Paul of Dune, the latest book to build on the Dune saga started by Frank Herbert and carried on now by his son Brian and Kevin Anderson. I've not been a huge fan of these additions to the Duniverse, and I think it is because Brian just does not possess his father's storytelling gift. Anyway, I'll see if I like how it ends.

Dymer's Dream: A Graphics Journal


Farawyn
Rohan


Sep 24 2008, 1:29pm

Post #3 of 45 (199 views)
Shortcut
The River King, by Alice Hoffman [In reply to] Can't Post

About the haves and have nots in a small town with a bit of a murder mystery thrown in. The writing is lovely.

Thinking about my "on deck" pick. I have Book Club Monday, but I don't hold out much hope because the girl who's picking, well, her choices have been a bit lame, not my cup of tea.

It's Fall. I may read LOTR again. In this hectic and stressful day and age I can deal with a bit of escapism.

*************
Disclaimer: The author of this message does not guarantee correct grammar, spelling or English usage. No responsibility can be accepted for the use of this message as a guide to written English.
**************
Discuss:
Photobucket




Patty
Immortal


Sep 24 2008, 4:17pm

Post #4 of 45 (160 views)
Shortcut
I'm listening to an audio book of "Miss Mole", by E.H. Young, and it was dramatized as... [In reply to] Can't Post

"Hannah", a little movie I'm very fond of.

Miss Mole doesn't seem to be very different from the movie, however, as is the case with most books, you can gleen a little more of her character in the pages (or tapes) than you can from the film.

I just finished what is probably the best Hamish MacBeth story I've listened to so far, Death of a Dreamer. M.C. Beaton runs hot and cold on her series, and sometimes the MacBeth stories as well as the Agatha Raisin series, which she also writes, are better than other times. With "Dreamer" there are no large plot holes (that I can tell) and she tidies up the story at the end. What I don't like about both series is that she keeps a running romantic storyline that she never resolves (I guess that would be the end of the series for her.) After a while, it gets repetitive. Still, it's good light reading (or, as in my case, listening to as I drop off to sleep or while I'm in the car.)

I've only seen one series of the MacBeth dramatizations, but they are enjoyable, too.

Permanent address: Into the West


Alassëa Eruvande
Valinor


Sep 24 2008, 5:55pm

Post #5 of 45 (200 views)
Shortcut
Jane Eyre [In reply to] Can't Post

I finished this yesterday. Even though I already knew what was going to happen (having watched a movie), this book was surprisingly a page turner. It also felt as though I was reading a modern novel. Or maybe I'm just getting used to a nineteenth century style. Anyway, I loved it and recommend it to anyone who also enjoys a good romance. Maybe that's why I hated Wuthering Heights so much. Everyone treated their loved ones so badly I could hardly believe they loved anyone.
I think I'm going to look for North and South next. I watched the BBC adaptation this weekend, with the yummy if scowling Richard Armitage, and thoroughly enjoyed it.

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

And suddenly the Ainur saw afar off a light, as it were a cloud with a living heart of flame.



SFTH Archive


Jazmine
Tol Eressea


Sep 24 2008, 6:35pm

Post #6 of 45 (154 views)
Shortcut
Call of the Wild/White Fang [In reply to] Can't Post

I picked these up in a really nice double edition. Haven't read either since I was at primary school, don't remember much about them except, I really enjoyed them! Am halfway through Call of the Wild, and I was right, it's really enjoyable! It's really cool how Jack London seems to get into the mindset of a dog, and really visualise how it would react in various circumstances. Very cool, almost like it's being written by the dog himself!


*Jazminatar the Brown*


greendragon
Sr. Staff


Sep 24 2008, 10:20pm

Post #7 of 45 (176 views)
Shortcut
Still reading 'In search of Scotland' - an absolute gem! [In reply to] Can't Post

I hope you won't mind if I share some of it with you folks. H V Morton travelled round Europe in the 20s and wrote about the places he saw. So this is a travel guide and is factual; but his writing is whimsical and charming, insightful, truly evocative of Scotland, touching, and yet hilariously funny and irrevent in places. I have laughed out loud many times - and been given strange looks by other passengers on the bus when I'm reading on my way home... Also, I find it very moving every time he writes of WWI memorials and writes about the war being over, and peace returned - of course little knowing what was to coming a a few short years.

Here are a few fabulous bits you may enjoy! Smile

Some insight into the American personality:
'As soon as I saw him I knew that he was embarked on one of those sentimetnal journeys which happen to all successful Amercians. I do not know whether Polish Americans, German Americans, Czecho-Slovakian Americans, Italian Americans, or all the other kinds of Americans, are to be discovered pervading the churchyards of Europe with an air of wistful uncertainty;l but I do know that every American with English, Scottish, or Irish blood in him comes back at some time to find his roots. They drift about unlikely towns and villages like prosperous ghouls, poring over old parish registers with expectant fingers, and standing for a long time before half-obliterated tombstones. This, I think, is the most lovable trait in the character of the American.'

On English and Scottish temperaments:
'I think the Cenotaph in London and the National Shrine in Edinburgh are the most remarkable symbols in existence of the temperamental difference between the two nations. One is Saxon and inarticulate; the other is Celtic and articulate. Grief locks the English heart, but it opens the Scottish. The Celt has a genius for the glorification of sorrow.'
[This makes me think of Bilbo's,'You'll be fine,' to Frodo. Hobbits are obviously Saxon!!]

And some of Morton's humour:
'Roslin [castle] is the ideal place for the writing of a humorous novel. The 'literary gentleman', concentrating against his dungeons, would seek refuge in a Wodehouse hero, or, removing his desk to a torture -chamber hacked with axes in the solid rock in the time of Robert the Bruce, he might write a rollicking revue. Perhaps the greatest attraction in Roslin for a 'literary gentleman' is the legend of the buried millions said to be lying in a vault beneath the courtyard. The only person who knows the hiding-place is a lady of the house of St. Clair, now inconveniently dead. If, however, a trumpet blown in the upper apartments is heard in the dungeons, she will appear and lead on to the gold. (Who more likely to awaken her than a 'literary gentleman', accustomed to blowing his own trumpet?)'

Great stuff. I know my Mum has a copy of 'In Search of Ireland' - must read that when I'm at home at Christmas...

'There are older and fouler things than orcs in the deep places of my fridge...'

'You never know what will happen next, when once you get mixed up with TORnsibs and their friends.'


squire
Valinor


Sep 24 2008, 11:04pm

Post #8 of 45 (185 views)
Shortcut
The Battle of Jutland [In reply to] Can't Post

The 1935 so-called classic by Holloway Frost. Recommended to me on another board (even more nerdy than TORn).





It was not as good as I'd hoped. Written by a professional naval officer for other naval professionals, it is essentially a maniacally detailed attempt to account for the movement, position, and tactics of every ship at the largest gunship battle ever fought. There is, to put it mildly, very little color except for the occasional "bravery that will live forever in the hearts of their countrymen" type remark. Frost's criticism of British timidity is brutal, but muted - the point of the book seems to be the lessons that the American battleship fleet should learn as it anticipates some kind of showdown with Japan.

Oh well, lessons learned, etc. On to "Rome" - about the 1960 Rome Olympics.



squire online:
RR Discussions: The Valaquenta, A Shortcut to Mushrooms, and Of Herbs and Stewed Rabbit
Lights! Action! Discuss on the Movie board!: 'A Journey in the Dark'. and 'Designing The Two Towers'.
Footeramas: The 3rd TORn Reading Room LotR Discussion; and "Tolkien would have LOVED it!"
squiretalk introduces the J.R.R. Tolkien Encyclopedia: A Reader's Diary


simplyaven
Grey Havens

Sep 25 2008, 12:53am

Post #9 of 45 (140 views)
Shortcut
Blackberry wine [In reply to] Can't Post

by Joanne Harris (Chocolat). I finished it on Monday and found it better than the Lollipop Shoes and worse than Chocolat. Now I`m re-reading the Hobbit as I need to refresh my memory Smile

I believe


a.s.
Valinor


Sep 25 2008, 1:06am

Post #10 of 45 (131 views)
Shortcut
it's lust [In reply to] Can't Post


Quote
For me, it was more interesting to observe my emotions toward Mamah as the story progressed. I questioned her choices, wondered at her ability to leave her children to follow after Wright, and stay with him when the sensationalizing press hounded them and vilified her. Do artistic and highly intelligent people answer to a higher calling, that of finding their true selves, than duty to home and children? Or is it all just egotistic blindness to the suffering of the young ones and faithful spouses left behind.




I think it's just lust.

Angelic

How do you pronounce her name, do you know?

a.s.

"an seileachan"

Pooh began to feel a little more comfortable, because when you are a Bear of Very Little Brain, and you Think of Things, you find sometimes that a Thing which seemed very Thingish inside you is quite different when it gets out into the open and has other people looking at it.

Call Her Emily


a.s.
Valinor


Sep 25 2008, 1:08am

Post #11 of 45 (136 views)
Shortcut
I just love Hoffman's writing [In reply to] Can't Post

If I ever get a modern novel written, I want people to compare my writing to hers.

Could you all remember that? You know, just in case the New York Times comes looking for quotes about people who "knew me when"?

LOL

a.s.

"an seileachan"

Pooh began to feel a little more comfortable, because when you are a Bear of Very Little Brain, and you Think of Things, you find sometimes that a Thing which seemed very Thingish inside you is quite different when it gets out into the open and has other people looking at it.

Call Her Emily


a.s.
Valinor


Sep 25 2008, 1:14am

Post #12 of 45 (123 views)
Shortcut
huh...is this a series? [In reply to] Can't Post

I haven't (to my knowledge, I tend to forget author names after a few years!) ever read a book by EH Young or a book featuring a "Miss Mole". The review at Amazon looks interesting. Might have to try to find these.

Cool

a.s.

"an seileachan"

Pooh began to feel a little more comfortable, because when you are a Bear of Very Little Brain, and you Think of Things, you find sometimes that a Thing which seemed very Thingish inside you is quite different when it gets out into the open and has other people looking at it.

Call Her Emily


Revie
Rivendell


Sep 25 2008, 1:16am

Post #13 of 45 (137 views)
Shortcut
May-mah is how it's noted in the book [In reply to] Can't Post

Yeah, lust. Good call. I felt very sorry for the kids through the whole book.

Dymer's Dream: A Graphics Journal


a.s.
Valinor


Sep 25 2008, 1:23am

Post #14 of 45 (144 views)
Shortcut
my first "adult" book [In reply to] Can't Post

It was one of my mom's favorite books and I read it in fourth grade. I don't think I really understood very much of it, to tell the truth. I got the gist of the plot, and the scene where Jane and Helen march in the rain stuck with me for all my childhood, but I missed the adult nuances completely.

Whenever people talk about North and South and TV, I always think of the old American miniseries based on the John Jakes Civil War novel and experience a momentary cognitive dissonance!

LOL

a.s.

"an seileachan"

Pooh began to feel a little more comfortable, because when you are a Bear of Very Little Brain, and you Think of Things, you find sometimes that a Thing which seemed very Thingish inside you is quite different when it gets out into the open and has other people looking at it.

Call Her Emily


a.s.
Valinor


Sep 25 2008, 1:26am

Post #15 of 45 (129 views)
Shortcut
haven't read these in years! [In reply to] Can't Post

I wonder how the "dog's perspective" would compare with the recent "Story of Edgar Sawtelle" which I loved, and of which many reviewers noted his ability to convey the point of view of the dogs.

a.s.

"an seileachan"

Pooh began to feel a little more comfortable, because when you are a Bear of Very Little Brain, and you Think of Things, you find sometimes that a Thing which seemed very Thingish inside you is quite different when it gets out into the open and has other people looking at it.

Call Her Emily


Morthoron
Gondor


Sep 25 2008, 1:36am

Post #16 of 45 (135 views)
Shortcut
Bah! [In reply to] Can't Post

I am half-way through Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell by Susanna Clark. Strange, but I'm not at all sure I like it. The dry humor lifts the prose at times, but 800 pages of English magic just isn't...well...magic. I will review it in full once I've finished; however, there are books that you just can't put down, and unfortunately this is one I struggle to pick up.

THE EARL OF SANDWICH: "Egad, sir, I do not know whether you will die on the gallows or of the pox!"
JOHN WILKES: That will depend, my Lord, on whether I embrace your principles or your mistress."
John Wilkes (1727-1797)


a.s.
Valinor


Sep 25 2008, 1:38am

Post #17 of 45 (149 views)
Shortcut
re-imagining the hobbits as Scottish or Irish [In reply to] Can't Post


Quote
Grief locks the English heart, but it opens the Scottish. The Celt has a genius for the glorification of sorrow.'
[This makes me think of Bilbo's,'You'll be fine,' to Frodo. Hobbits are obviously Saxon!!]




Yes, Frodo for one would certainly be a different hobbit if he was raised in my large Irish-American clan! Nothing half as much fun as being spectacularly maudlin.

LOL

a.s.

"an seileachan"

Pooh began to feel a little more comfortable, because when you are a Bear of Very Little Brain, and you Think of Things, you find sometimes that a Thing which seemed very Thingish inside you is quite different when it gets out into the open and has other people looking at it.

Call Her Emily


a.s.
Valinor


Sep 25 2008, 1:43am

Post #18 of 45 (164 views)
Shortcut
gasp: "even more nerdy than Torn"?? [In reply to] Can't Post

Oh, perish the thought.

Shocked

Who considers this a "so-called classic"? Just wondering, as I notice it was published by the US Naval Institute, and gosh, I can't think off the top of my head of the last classic I read published by the USNI.

JOKE.

a.s.

"an seileachan"

Pooh began to feel a little more comfortable, because when you are a Bear of Very Little Brain, and you Think of Things, you find sometimes that a Thing which seemed very Thingish inside you is quite different when it gets out into the open and has other people looking at it.

Call Her Emily


a.s.
Valinor


Sep 25 2008, 1:47am

Post #19 of 45 (121 views)
Shortcut
I've never read Harris [In reply to] Can't Post

I think I should at least try Chocolat, as almost every girl-friend of mine has read this and I don't know why I haven't. Hmmm. Have you read most of her books? Is Chocolat the best?

a.s.

"an seileachan"

Pooh began to feel a little more comfortable, because when you are a Bear of Very Little Brain, and you Think of Things, you find sometimes that a Thing which seemed very Thingish inside you is quite different when it gets out into the open and has other people looking at it.

Call Her Emily


a.s.
Valinor


Sep 25 2008, 1:50am

Post #20 of 45 (146 views)
Shortcut
Try the audiobook! [In reply to] Can't Post

Seriously! I listened to most of this on audiobook when I was in the hospital for an extended time (there are SCADS of discs, though!!). I really enjoyed it, but noticed when I got an actual copy of the book that the footnotes and etc may have made it a little offputting...but by then I was invested in the story!

a.s.

"an seileachan"

Pooh began to feel a little more comfortable, because when you are a Bear of Very Little Brain, and you Think of Things, you find sometimes that a Thing which seemed very Thingish inside you is quite different when it gets out into the open and has other people looking at it.

Call Her Emily

(This post was edited by a.s. on Sep 25 2008, 1:51am)


Kimi
Forum Admin / Moderator


Sep 25 2008, 1:55am

Post #21 of 45 (155 views)
Shortcut
The Great adventure : New Zealand soldiers describe the First World War [In reply to] Can't Post

I know I've been boring by referring week after week to my reading of several books of WWI letters and diaries, but I've found them gripping. I've come to the end of a batch of such books, and think I might read something lighter for a while :-) Although I'm concurrently re-reading "Pride and Prejudice", which is lovely light relief.

The Great Adventure is a collection of letters home from soldiers of different ages and backgrounds with just a small amount of commentary to give what information there is on the men's fates. They are all fascinating; one of the men in particular, with his gentle, caring letters to his wife, whom he very much speaks to as an equal, I quite fell in love with.

The last soldier in the series has a story more dramatic than I'd dare put into a work of fiction. He joined up the month the war began, an eager 20-year-old with a job as a bank clerk that he loathed. He was worried that the war might be over before he had the chance for his own "great adventure" (a phrase he actually used), but hoped to manage to be a part of it for the few months he expected it to last.

He survived Gallipoli. He survived years on the Western Front. And his letters show his gradual chance from an eager, naive youth to a disillusioned and weary man. When he left for his adventure he left behind a fiancée, and as the expected months turned into years, he repeatedly told her he did not want to hold her to the engagement; that he hated to see her wasting the best years of her life waiting for a man who might never come back. But she was determined to wait for him. In 1918 there was talk of allowing the New Zealand soldiers who had been away for over three years to have some home leave, but the British Government blocked the move. This was too much for Walter; he had no idea how much longer the war might last. He wrote and told his fiancée that he had fallen in love with another woman, and she was free to break off their engagement (it needed to be this way around; a broken engagement was still somewhat scandalous at this time, and a man who broke one off was a cad). He told his father the same thing, and said how wretched he felt about what he was doing.

But the kicker is this: there was no "other woman" (this is revealed in a later letter to his father). He had made up the story to push his fiancée into being free of him. I don't know exactly how she replied, but from other hints it appears she reluctantly agreed, but insisted they remain friends.

Walter got into Officer Training. He completed his course, and returned to France. In his first action as an officer he was shot by a German officer who he thought was surrendering, and died instantly. He had survived over four years of war, to be killed six weeks before it ended.


My writing (including The Passing of Mistress Rose)

Do we find happiness so often that we should turn it off the box when it happens to sit there?

- A Room With a View


(This post was edited by Kimi on Sep 25 2008, 1:58am)


squire
Valinor


Sep 25 2008, 2:07am

Post #22 of 45 (182 views)
Shortcut
There are nerds, and then there are NERDS. [In reply to] Can't Post

This was the discussion this summer that caught my eye; see DesertSailor's post about halfway down.

"Classic" is a bit of an exaggeration, perhaps (I did put it in quotes, remember), but that's the kind of post that makes one think, "why not try it"? So I did.

Careful, a.s., this site is very addictive. I lurk heavily - the reception of my first few pathetic posts convinced me long ago to stay in the bleachers when these guys* are in the court. But if you start participating, think twice about asking this board if there are any actual classics published by the Naval Institute - you might never hear the end of it.

*There are no women at all, as far as I can tell after two years of timid attendance.





squire online:
RR Discussions: The Valaquenta, A Shortcut to Mushrooms, and Of Herbs and Stewed Rabbit
Lights! Action! Discuss on the Movie board!: 'A Journey in the Dark'. and 'Designing The Two Towers'.
Footeramas: The 3rd TORn Reading Room LotR Discussion; and "Tolkien would have LOVED it!"
squiretalk introduces the J.R.R. Tolkien Encyclopedia: A Reader's Diary


Mar
Gondor


Sep 25 2008, 2:35am

Post #23 of 45 (118 views)
Shortcut
Good idea - think I will join you.// [In reply to] Can't Post

 

Most people don't know there are angels whose only job is to make sure you don't get too comfortable - fall asleep and miss your life.


Mar
Gondor


Sep 25 2008, 2:37am

Post #24 of 45 (147 views)
Shortcut
Yes, LotR as we move towards winter. // [In reply to] Can't Post

 

Most people don't know there are angels whose only job is to make sure you don't get too comfortable - fall asleep and miss your life.


Finding Frodo
Tol Eressea


Sep 25 2008, 3:57am

Post #25 of 45 (148 views)
Shortcut
The Host by Stephanie Meyer [In reply to] Can't Post

I had not heard of this book or even this author (though I later found out she also wrote Twilight, which I have heard of). My neighbor was reading it in her front yard and I craned my neck at it until she offered to let me read it after she was doneLaugh. It is an alien body-snatcher tale with a heart. The first half was so gripping I stayed up until about 4:00 a.m. reading it. Then it slowed down a little but never dragged. I was a little disappointed in the ending, but overall it was a dang good yarn!

Where's Frodo?

First page Previous page 1 2 Next page Last page  View All
 
 

Search for (options) Powered by Gossamer Forum v.1.2.3

home | advertising | contact us | back to top | search news | join list | Content Rating

This site is maintained and updated by fans of The Lord of the Rings, and is in no way affiliated with Tolkien Enterprises or the Tolkien Estate. We in no way claim the artwork displayed to be our own. Copyrights and trademarks for the books, films, articles, and other promotional materials are held by their respective owners and their use is allowed under the fair use clause of the Copyright Law. Design and original photography however are copyright © 1999-2012 TheOneRing.net. Binary hosting provided by Nexcess.net

Do not follow this link, or your host will be blocked from this site. This is a spider trap.