Day: June 16, 2017

Review: The Metamorphosis

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The MetamorphosisBook Review
4 out of 5 stars to The Metamorphosis, written in 1915 by Franz Kafka. I think most people are familiar with the premise of this book, and rather than do a normal review, I thought maybe I’d question how on earth Kafka came up with this one? It was such a great way to tell the story and teach a lesson… a man wakes up as a giant beetle? (I secretly suspect he came across a huge cockroach in his apartment while in NYC one day). And how do you deal with such a change? Your family is afraid. They are embarrassed. You can talk. What’s really going on here? What is Kafka trying to say about life? We’re all insensitive? Liars? Fakes? Humorists? Nutty? So many things to read into here… it’s a run book, too. When you’re a bug life’s quite different. Have you ever managed something like that before? No. So how did Kafka come up with all the little things to make it real? I’m glad he did as this book helps you enjoy reading when you may be forced to read some classics at a younger age that don’t appeal to you. As an more mature reader, you find all the symbols and beauty in the messages with this one. I believe I read it twice, possibly some excerpts for a third instance. Each time, it gets better. I would love to see a really good film or TV Adaption… purely to witness the metaphorical views a director would incorporate on the big screen or the stage. The words are amazing, but it’s what you experience by reading it that makes it such a wonderful book.



About Me


For those new to me or my reviews… here’s the scoop: I read A LOT. I write A LOT. And now I blog A LOT. First the book review goes on Goodreads, and then I send it on over to my WordPress blog at https://thisismytruthnow.com, where you’ll also find TV & Film reviews, the revealing and introspective 365 Daily Challenge and lots of blogging about places I’ve visited all over the world. And you can find all my social media profiles to get the details on the who/what/when/where and my pictures. Leave a comment and let me know what you think. Vote in the poll and ratings. Thanks for stopping by.
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Review: The Return of the Native

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The Return of the NativeBook Review
5 out of 5 stars to The Return of the Native, a novel written by Thomas Hardy, first published in 1878 and subsequently re-issued a few times with additional revisions. It’s rare for me to give out a full 5 stars, but this book will always hold an extreme and special place in my heart. It was the start of my adoration of the English countryside. It was a true story of love, life and reality. Watching the drama unfold over the years, chapter by chapter, was phenomenal. I was there while it happened, at least it felt so to me. Hardy had a unique ability to transport me to his vision. I felt connected to him as a writer and a storyteller. I loved every character. I couldn’t decide who should end up with whom. It’s that good… you see all sides. You want everything. But sadly, you cannot have it. The fighting felt true to form. The depression made me melancholic. I fell in love with the main characters and would have done anything to see them happy when I first read it. I’ve read it three times, roughly every ten years. I’m due again in the very near future. Perhaps we should buddy read it!



About Me


For those new to me or my reviews… here’s the scoop: I read A LOT. I write A LOT. And now I blog A LOT. First the book review goes on Goodreads, and then I send it on over to my WordPress blog at https://thisismytruthnow.com, where you’ll also find TV & Film reviews, the revealing and introspective 365 Daily Challenge and lots of blogging about places I’ve visited all over the world. And you can find all my social media profiles to get the details on the who/what/when/where and my pictures. Leave a comment and let me know what you think. Vote in the poll and ratings. Thanks for stopping by.

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Review: Don Quixote

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Don QuixoteBook Review
4 out of 5 stars to Don Quixote, written around 1605 by Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra. A few interesting facts: (1) The book was originally written in Spanish, (2) I read an English translation as when I attempted to read the Spanish, between the changes in language over 400 years and my own limitations of the language at the time I read it, (3) this is considered one of the first “modern” novels and (4) all the great writers in the 19th century looked to this novel and author as the person whose footsteps they should be following in… that’s how good it was and how famous it was years ago. So many forget about it now, think of it as just some non-American book, a romance story or a play or film they watched. WRONG! It started as a great Spanish novel — I’m only being funny with my little attitude here — that influenced the entire world. If you haven’t read it, you should definitely give it a chance. From romance to solid friendships, to travels and cultural experiences, this book tells of life’s greatest pleasures and all the emotions that come with it.



About Me


For those new to me or my reviews… here’s the scoop: I read A LOT. I write A LOT. And now I blog A LOT. First the book review goes on Goodreads, and then I send it on over to my WordPress blog at https://thisismytruthnow.com, where you’ll also find TV & Film reviews, the revealing and introspective 365 Daily Challenge and lots of blogging about places I’ve visited all over the world. And you can find all my social media profiles to get the details on the who/what/when/where and my pictures. Leave a comment and let me know what you think. Vote in the poll and ratings. Thanks for stopping by.

View all my reviews

Review: The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde

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The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. HydeQuestions & Final Thoughts
4 out of 5 stars to The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde written in 1886 by Robert Louis Stevenson. So here’s how naive I was years ago… and keep in mind I was an English major who loved the classics… I’d read some short stories about Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde as a teenager, maybe saw some video or tv versions…. can’t quite remember. Sophomore year in college, this is listed on the assigned syllabus for one of my courses. And I’m like “I think there’s a mistake. Stevenson wrote Treasure Island. He didn’t create this mystery about a strange man.” I couldn’t separate that the author had different styles and stories. I don’t know what I was thinking… maybe I had no sleep… point being, this was a turning point in literature for me, where I realized how an author could truly write very different novels. And both be great! For me, this was why I loved reading all the time. Drama. Intrigue. Mystery. Suspense. Crazy. Unique. Peculiar. It was everything my boring life wasn’t at the time. I suspect most people don’t realize this was a lengthy novel before it was a short work and a TV thing. It’s a must read. Go. Now.



About Me


For those new to me or my reviews… here’s the scoop: I read A LOT. I write A LOT. And now I blog A LOT. First the book review goes on Goodreads, and then I send it on over to my WordPress blog at https://thisismytruthnow.com, where you’ll also find TV & Film reviews, the revealing and introspective 365 Daily Challenge and lots of blogging about places I’ve visited all over the world. And you can find all my social media profiles to get the details on the who/what/when/where and my pictures. Leave a comment and let me know what you think. Vote in the poll and ratings. Thanks for stopping by.

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Review: The House on Mango Street

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The House on Mango StreetBook Review
4 out of 5 stars to The House on Mango Street, a short series of vignettes published in 1984 and written by Sandra Cisneros. Picture it: Long Island, August 1995. 18-year-old college student receives a letter in the mail, revealing two books he must read prior to attending the freshmen orientation seminar on his first day of college later that month. Young kid says “They’re giving me work to do already? WT…” It went something like that. And it wasn’t that I didn’t want to read, and I was a good student, but seriously… I’m scared of going off to college and already being told to start doing some work. Can’t I have some break before I… never mind. So I read it. And wow, it’s fantastic. A short collection of stories about growing up in Chicago, learning how to live on your own (sort of). Meeting different people. Seeing other sides of life. Learning more than you thought was out there. Embracing change and culture.

Oh… I get it… that’s what’s about to happen to me! Wow… nice book. Thanks. So then I get to the orientation. And they want us to discuss it in a random group that was set up. So we get put in groups of 6. I’m with some weird-looking people. At 18, I looked about 12 still. For some reason, I got stuck with the other 18-year-olds who looked 28. I wanted to call them mom and dad. But I knew better. I kept my mouth shut. Sandra Cisneros has just taught me that. So… I’m very shy and don’t say a word. No one speaks. I realize I guess I must say something. So I said. “I liked it a lot.” Everyone nodded. I said something like “what did you think?”

I’ll save you the drama. None of them read it. I was the only one who did. How embarrassing for them! It was so good… but I played it cool and described the plot. It seemed to open up the conversation, but then we were asked to nominate a leader to step up to the stage and explain your group’s understanding of the book. Oh you know… vengeance… some day… payback…

My lesson. Don’t ever read a book again. JUST KIDDING! You must read this one. It’s a beautiful story and helps you embrace change and difference. And the characters are quite memorable and quirky. Quick read. Maybe 2 hours. You should definitely give it a chance.



About Me


For those new to me or my reviews… here’s the scoop: I read A LOT. I write A LOT. And now I blog A LOT. First the book review goes on Goodreads, and then I send it on over to my WordPress blog at https://thisismytruthnow.com, where you’ll also find TV & Film reviews, the revealing and introspective 365 Daily Challenge and lots of blogging about places I’ve visited all over the world. And you can find all my social media profiles to get the details on the who/what/when/where and my pictures. Leave a comment and let me know what you think. Vote in the poll and ratings. Thanks for stopping by.

View all my reviews

Review: Master Harold…and the boys

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Master Harold...and the boysBook Review
2+ out of 5 stars to Master Harold…and the boys, a play written in 1982 by Athol Fugard. It pains me to give this work only 2 stars as I know the value it truly brings to highlighting apartheid in South Africa when it needed more attention. Perhaps because I read this when I was still fairly young, I couldn’t connect with it. As a younger reader, I often struggled with themes around depression, war, slavery and human rights. I couldn’t fathom not treating people equally and fairly, and struggled to read the stories. Might be that I didn’t want to feel those emotions or I didn’t know how to at the time. With this work, the language, the theme and the overall setting was so unfamiliar to me, I thought it wasn’t doing justice to the story and the cause. It was meant for an older audience, and probably if I went back to read it now, I’d like it more. It’s interesting to think about how you’d change ratings for books and plays as you age, hence why on my blog, I’ve created the “what age to read which book by genre” series… to help ensure books receive the best possible attention when being read. That said, I wouldn’t discourage anyone from reading this as it wasn’t bad; it just fell too flat for me. I suppose the characters were meant to feel like templates… archetypes as opposed to real people suffering… in order to show how this was happening all over in many respects, shapes and forms. In the end, it was work to read it, and when that happens, which is rare, I have to give a lower rating. Anyone read this who felt differently? What did I miss?



About Me


For those new to me or my reviews… here’s the scoop: I read A LOT. I write A LOT. And now I blog A LOT. First the book review goes on Goodreads, and then I send it on over to my WordPress blog at https://thisismytruthnow.com, where you’ll also find TV & Film reviews, the revealing and introspective 365 Daily Challenge and lots of blogging about places I’ve visited all over the world. And you can find all my social media profiles to get the details on the who/what/when/where and my pictures. Leave a comment and let me know what you think. Vote in the poll and ratings. Thanks for stopping by.

View all my reviews

Review: The Odyssey

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The OdysseyBook Review
4 out of 5 stars to The Odyssey, published around 800 BC and written by Homer. I was tasked with reading this epic work as part of an Advanced Placement English course in between my junior and senior years of high school. I loved literature back then as much as I do now, and my reading habits probably grew from everything my teachers encouraged us to read during the summer hiatus and mid-year breaks. We sampled literature from all over the world, and this Greek tome was one of the many we read. We only read certain sections, as it’s over 500 pages long, but I finished it on my own over winter break that year. It often depends on the translation version you read, as it might make it better or worse for you. I don’t recall which one the teacher selected, but it must have been good as I did my quarterly papers on both this book and Homer’s other work, The Iliad. The Odyssey was an amazing tale of a journey through the famed Trojan Wars in ancient Greece. Meeting all the gods and goddesses, understanding the genealogy and family structure, the plots between all their shenanigans and games… for someone with my hobbies and interests, this was perfect. The only part I found a bit dull was when it truly went into war-time battle descriptions, as reading details about fighting is not typically something I enjoy. But the soap opera-like quality of these characters cum deity realities was just absorbing fun. The lyrics and the words fly off the pages. The images and the metaphors are pretty. And if you know enough about Greek history, you almost feel as if you’re in the story.



About Me


For those new to me or my reviews… here’s the scoop: I read A LOT. I write A LOT. And now I blog A LOT. First the book review goes on Goodreads, and then I send it on over to my WordPress blog at https://thisismytruthnow.com, where you’ll also find TV & Film reviews, the revealing and introspective 365 Daily Challenge and lots of blogging about places I’ve visited all over the world. And you can find all my social media profiles to get the details on the who/what/when/where and my pictures. Leave a comment and let me know what you think. Vote in the poll and ratings. Thanks for stopping by.

View all my reviews