MarthaJeanne - Thoughts on books 2023-second topic

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MarthaJeanne - Thoughts on books 2023-second topic

Editado: Maio 1, 2023, 7:38 am

Ich sehe schon wieder einige, die nicht da sind 4* Nestroy is always fun.

By the way, the title quotes a teacher taking attendance. "Once again I see a few who aren't here."

Maio 1, 2023, 7:29 am

Von Raben und Krähen 3* The best thing about this book is the double page that shows many Corvids that aren't black/grey/white.

Maio 1, 2023, 3:57 pm

Editado: Maio 2, 2023, 11:58 am

I'm about a hundred pages into The Book of Strange New Things and I can't bear the thought of trying to read almost 500 more. OK, only 480. But still, can't do it.


Maio 3, 2023, 12:20 pm

Maio 3, 2023, 3:35 pm

Maio 4, 2023, 5:22 pm

Botanische Spaziergänge 2* This sounded like such a good idea, but it has not been carried out well.

The start of each walk gives a bit of information, but only a bit. A sketch map of the route would be really helpful. The directions are often quite vague, and even if you would still need good maps, at least figuring out where you want to be on those maps would be easier.

Some of the routes mention public transportation, but all of them should have it, and right up there at the beginning, not hidden in the general text.

It would also be helpful to mention whether or not the route is suitable for those dependant on wheels. Wheelchairs, walkers, and baby buggies are not easy to use on routes with stairs, gravel and rough paths. Generally there is some indication of this buried in the text, but a sentence in the introduction would be helpful.

Much of the flora described fluctuates a lot. Generally what is described is only visible in a certain season. The things to look out for in other seasons is often forgotten. Also the plantings in various parks and along streets varies a lot from year to year. You can't count on seeing this year what the author saw one or two years earlier.

There is a lot of interesting botanical trivia in here, but it might be hard to find again. The index is very limited.

Maio 6, 2023, 4:26 pm

Die Benediktusregel I really enjoyed rereading this.

Maio 6, 2023, 5:02 pm

The Women of Weird Tales 2* Weird is right. I'm not sure why I borrowed this, as it's really not my genre. I think these stories are supposed to be horror, but they are so far beyond believable that I felt no fear. The four authors can all write very well, and obviously this was what their readers (and the magazine editors) wanted, but I can't imagine why.

Maio 9, 2023, 2:59 am

Der hl. Benedikt : Buch II der Dialoge lateinisch, deutsch This is such a lovely story. The miracles go too far for me, but they illustrate a man who lived for God and for others. 4 1/2*

Maio 9, 2023, 8:23 am

If you return 6 books to the library, and pick up 2 books that you had on hold, and then find 6 more books that you want to borrow, you end up with two more books borrowed than you started with.

I'm trying to reduce the number of books I have checked out, but it didn't work today.

Editado: Maio 9, 2023, 10:50 am

Pinsa : 55 sensationelle Rezepte 2* Something that needs a few days preparation is not going to be top of my list of meals to prepare.

BTW One of the doughs is 'with whole wheat' 50g out of a 500g of flour total!

Maio 9, 2023, 1:17 pm

>11 MarthaJeanne: I double checked your math - A+

Maio 9, 2023, 2:00 pm

Maio 10, 2023, 3:04 am

Maio 10, 2023, 3:19 am

Kichererbse 3* Certainly inspired me to want to eat some chickpeas, but not from his recipes. I think I'll discard this.

Maio 12, 2023, 4:33 pm

Maio 14, 2023, 2:45 pm

Editado: Maio 15, 2023, 7:19 am

Die Kunst im Christlichen Ägypten 3* Discarding.

BTW I now have my 'To Read' collection under 200.

Maio 15, 2023, 1:38 pm

Maio 16, 2023, 4:24 am

Maio 17, 2023, 7:37 am

Kochen wie die Bäuerin 4* I have to try the daisy grissinni, once the rain has stopped and I can actually pick them.

Maio 18, 2023, 4:06 am

I should have finished Wilhelm von Saint-Thierry, Meditationen und Gebete this morning, but just could not handle more of his 'I'm a miserable sinner.'

Maio 18, 2023, 1:59 pm

On this fair sampler 4 1/2* According to comments, Linn Skinner gave me this. Sorry, Linn, should have read it long ago. Some of these samplers are just spectacular. My favourite is the needlelace one right at the beginning.

Editado: Maio 19, 2023, 12:07 pm

I bought several books downtown today, trying to get books by women I don't have yet. I also ordered four books, three men, only one of whom I already own. I need to go easy on fixing my gender not sets until they are all in. (Most of those are going to be male, and several can't be found.)

Maio 21, 2023, 2:53 pm

Madame Curie 4* A Novel about the life of Marie Curie. I was full of horror as I read about hot they did their lab work. Among other things she cooked their meal on the same stove they were using to purify the pitchblende.

Editado: Maio 22, 2023, 7:50 am

Continuing with Top with Cinnamon Lots of good ideas, but she seems very keen on kale. I think I'll wait until the chard is ready to harvest and use that instead.

I added more rhubarb to the Bluebarb Sauce this morning. Very good in yoghurt. Can't even say that I miss the pie.

Chop your rhubarb. For about 300 g rhubarb add 50 g sugar and 50 g dried blueberries (or dried mixed berries). Let that sit for a bit. When ready to cook, add up to half the rhubarb weight of fresh blueberries and microwave, stirring every 2-3 minutes until the rhubarb is soft. It should be fairly thick, but will thicken more as it cools and the dried berries continue to absorb moisture. I used mixed berries, as that is what my store had. I enjoy the occasional burst of cranberry or currant.

Editado: Maio 23, 2023, 12:47 pm

>27 MarthaJeanne: She also has a tendency to use coconut oil where any reasonable non-vegan would use butter. As I said back then, way too many chocolate recipes. But I'll stick with the 4 1/2* rating.

I also finished Silver Gryphon today.

Maio 24, 2023, 3:22 pm

Hebrew Manuscripts This shows examples of beautiful manuscripts from The British Library's collection. 4 1/2*

Editado: Maio 26, 2023, 4:22 am

Vom Verschwinden der Arten 3* It's not that what she said wasn't true, important and so on. It's that she kept saying it over and over. It should be possible to fill up 200 pages on the subject of extinction without quite so much of that.


Maio 26, 2023, 12:19 pm

The Christmas Postcards 4 1/2* This is very well written, and is not at all Christmasy.

Maio 26, 2023, 12:33 pm

>31 MarthaJeanne: are the photos of Moolah part of the book?

Maio 26, 2023, 1:31 pm

No. That would be a good idea.

Maio 27, 2023, 3:45 am

Rendezvous der Fabelwesen 3* This started out fairly well, but got less and less interesting as I went on. Might have helped if the previous reader had not been a smoker.

Editado: Maio 27, 2023, 3:37 pm

Oh, and at some point recently my books have gone into five digits. That must have been on the 19th, after buying a batch of books at the store that sells left over batches.

To Read will soon be under 200. That keeps wobbling up and down though.

Maio 27, 2023, 3:41 pm

>35 MarthaJeanne: Whew! Where do you keep them all?

Maio 27, 2023, 11:50 pm

>36 2wonderY: 'Your books' is less than half of that. Why do you think I'm trying to discard books?

Maio 28, 2023, 5:02 pm

Editado: Maio 29, 2023, 10:37 am

Das Ereignis 4 1/2* She deserved the prize. What wonderful writing!

Der Junge Mann Again 4 1/2* Annie Ernaux is a superb writer.

On the other hand I don't feel any particular attraction to her as a person. I liked the way she connected the two books.

Maio 30, 2023, 3:04 pm

Opus Anglicanum 4 1/2* I really enjoyed reading this. A few decades ago I would have been all eager to try it out. Well, obviously I have learned some sense. Neither my fingers nor my eyes, nor my brain are up to this. But it is still very beautiful, and I am glad to know, at least theoretically how it is done.

Editado: Jun 1, 2023, 8:11 am

Haselnuss At best 3*.

BTW 34 books in May.

Editado: Jun 1, 2023, 9:36 am

Dust Child 4 1/2* tells the stories of Amerasian children, their Vietnamese mothers and American fathers condensed into a fictional family. Very moving.

Jun 1, 2023, 11:43 am

>40 MarthaJeanne: And linger over the pictures.

Jun 2, 2023, 1:32 pm

Take a Thief

>43 2wonderY: Actually, not really. There are no pictures of medieval works. Each project has a big picture of the finished piece, and then lots of (too) small pictures of the various stages.

Editado: Jun 3, 2023, 3:13 pm

When I borrowed Girl, Woman, Other I expected it to be difficult reading. I'm not finding it so. The formal aspects that others find distracting don't faze me at all. I just enjoy the wonderful writing. Not very far in yet, but I'm really enjoying it.

I gave Manifesto 4 1/2*, and this is likely to be the same.

Jun 3, 2023, 2:49 pm

The Word (Barton) Can I give this 4 3/4? I guess I have to round up.

Jun 3, 2023, 2:50 pm

>45 MarthaJeanne: Your second touchstone needs fixed, I think.

Jun 3, 2023, 2:52 pm

>46 MarthaJeanne: !!! Adding to my list.

Editado: Jun 3, 2023, 3:25 pm

>46 MarthaJeanne: If you want to read more of what I thought about this book, I wrote at length at

>48 2wonderY: I think you and your friends might find a lot of things to think about in here. Barton writes very clearly about things that aren't very clear at all.

>47 2wonderY: Fixed. Sorry about that.

Oh, and of course having ordered this book on the basis of @Possmann 's message, I now have to get my hands on the Wright/Goldingay translation. Most of Wright's NT I have in his commentaries, but I just have to read Goldingay's OT.

Editado: Jun 4, 2023, 6:36 am

>45Actually how can one not like the look of this on the page? Warning: includes sexual violence.

Waris draws cartoons as a hobby and is developing a female Somali superhero

who hunts down men who hurt women

and castrates them slowly

without anaestheics

That should actually all have indents, but I can't figure out how to do that.

Jun 5, 2023, 12:04 pm

My reading today makes me glad I'm me. I was reading New Scientist, and there were various articles on Quantum Physics. I am so glad that I don't have to deal with quantum pseudoparticles. Apparently they are going to make quantum computers better. You know what? I'm pretty sure I'm never going to use a quantum computer.

I've started Liv's alone. It's a howl! but at the same time that I am laughing at her descriptions, I am also very glad that all my pregnancies started the old fashioned way, and I never had to go online to order sperm straws.

Jun 5, 2023, 1:43 pm

>52 MarthaJeanne: Don’t be too sure. The library IT guys tell me that the memory chips (so small you carry them around in a case) work based on quantum physics. Does Jerry store his photos on such a chip?

Jun 5, 2023, 1:52 pm

No idea. I don't.

Jun 5, 2023, 3:53 pm

Aufbruch im Licht der Sterne 4* Captain Cook and the Polynesians who sailed with him.

Jun 6, 2023, 4:09 am

I tried to start reading Papyrus. I gave up after a very short time. No idea if it the author or the (German) translator, but there is no way I am going to make it through this. 1*

Jun 6, 2023, 7:22 am

>56 MarthaJeanne: Someone found it essential reading! Added 151 characters in Common Knowledge!! Annoying.

Jun 6, 2023, 11:29 am

I'm so excited! Two bookstores have sent me emails today that my books have arrived. Since Friday was the traditional 'two weeks' this seems quite good for books in English that are not good sellers. Now which book will I read first?

Jun 7, 2023, 7:28 am

>50 MarthaJeanne: Another real gem:

a mouth that holds all her misery like a drawstring tightened around a pouch

Jun 7, 2023, 5:05 pm

Finished Girl, Woman, Other I'm going to hold myself back and only give this 4 1/2*. What else does the library have of hers?

Jun 8, 2023, 1:00 pm

Reiche Bilder If this was going to sit around unread for 10 years, just after reading Opus Anglicanum was a good time to pull it out. 4*

Editado: Jun 9, 2023, 10:13 am

Was downtown today. Among other things, I had a book each to pick up at two book stores.

First bookstore, showed them a list of 4 books. They had one, and ordered the other three. Walked out with two books.

Second bookstore, asked for When Women were Dragons See for the rest of that adventure. In the process of looking for it before asking for help, I ended up choosing two other books. Ended up with a few magazines and four books.

The baker I like only had half a loaf of my favourite bread, but said if I had other places to visit, they could bake one up in half an hour. So I went to the Market on Freiung, and then to the spice and cookbook store. Two more books.

This is not the way to reduce the number of books in the house. Still, I am quite excited to have them. God is not a white man gets comments from other customers who notice the title.

Jun 10, 2023, 3:10 pm

Editado: Jun 10, 2023, 4:59 pm

Banane 1* This is the perfect book for someone who has several banana and plantian trees in the garden and is looking for ways to use the fruit, leaves, flowers and peels.

Instead, for those of us buying bananas at the supermarket, I recommend

Jun 11, 2023, 2:26 am

The Ladder of Monks I found this online in English. It is very short.

Editado: Jun 11, 2023, 4:44 pm

Liv's Alone 3 1/2* Liv Thorne decided to havea baby with donor sperm in her late thirties. For a single/solo mother she is very privileged. She may have money difficulties, but she could use private fertility clinics. When her morgage payments got to be to much, she had the house to sell. She has sisters and friends who call up asking if they can take her baby for a sleepover. She has a professional job in her own company that she can do from home with very flexible hours. At least she recognizes her privilege.

Oh, and her complaints about being called an 'old' mother. I did it in my late twenties. I did it in my late thirties. Yes, it makes a difference.

However, it was a fun read. I just got somewhat frustrated at how naive she was about motherhood.

Jun 13, 2023, 7:23 am

Das Einhorn 4* The subtitle is 'History of a fascination', which is a very good description of the book.

Jun 14, 2023, 3:45 am

I won The Chinese Time Machine from Early Reviewers. It was painful. Very painful. I think I'll drop out of ER again.

Jun 14, 2023, 10:02 am

Reading a novel based on Nellie Bly's race around the world, Miss Bly und die Wette gegen Jules Verne Unfortunately, every time I try to look up some interesting occurrence I discover that it is very fictional. Nor does the author put in a few pages at the end explaining how she has changed history. Not finishing. 2*

Editado: Jun 14, 2023, 11:32 am

Karotte / Möhre

I think I may stop buying this series. Rather than providing usable recipes, the authors seem to be trying to find the most complicated, exotic recipes possible. A few of the recipes look good, but I doubt that I will bother to collect all the weird ingredients and do the fiddly cooking.

Jun 15, 2023, 7:40 am

I'm reading The way into Narnia, so of course I also have to reread The Chronicles of Narnia. I just finshed The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe. My copy has all the books in chronological order, but I agree with Schakel that publishing order works best.

Schakel gives notes on the text. I suppose it is somewhat interesting to see the changes that were made for the US edition. I do not need the explanations of complicated words. I don't remember needing them at first read either.

It is more interesting to me that I have recently read more about some of the weird creatures in Dawn Treader that come out of early geography texts.

Jun 15, 2023, 8:21 am

>71 MarthaJeanne: That looks so interesting as do the LT recommendations on the page. I might attempt a journey, though I’ve only read a few of the series.

Editado: Jun 15, 2023, 8:35 am

I picked up the second book first, in a bookstall in Ahmednagar when I was about 10, and keep reading them.

I remember particularly standing in the hall in Geneva with Edward. He must have been 16 or 17, and certainly well acquainted with the books. I had just bought a second-hand hard back set for Steven in an attempt to get him to read something other than Harry Potter. I mentioned to Edward that the Narnia books were full of Christian theology and that Aslan represented Christ. He at first looked sceptical, then thoughtful, then ran off to reread the series.

The Way into Narnia is not giving me lots of new insight, but it is well-written, or maybe the author has very similar opinions to me about Narnia. On the other hand, he also is very positive about Lewis's adult series, which I have never managed to get through. Screwtape is fun, though.

Editado: Jun 16, 2023, 10:55 am

Jun 16, 2023, 4:35 pm

Amalfi Küche 2* What can you say about a cookbook that insists on the eggs being from corn-fed chickens to get the best coloured pasta?

Many of the recipes will only work on the Amalfi Coast because of the difficulty of getting ingredients.

Jun 20, 2023, 4:39 am

Editado: Jun 21, 2023, 11:32 am

Otto Franks Geheimnis 3 1/2

I am convinced that the author has a high opinion of Otto Frank, but she did not manage to pass that opinion on to me.

I think I last read Anne Frank's Diary in 1968 as we were in Amsterdam. I'm quite sure we visited the Anne Frank House, but I remember nothing of that. I was also part of a school production of the play the previous year, which I have very vague memories of. Reading this has not made me want to reread the Diary.

Editado: Jun 21, 2023, 2:38 pm

I'm not going to complain about all the weird and unprocurable ingredients in Gordon Ramsay's Uncharted, because that is how it is marketed and what I expected. However, I have found one recipe that I might just try: Icelandic pickled rhubarb. Kind of weird, but so very Icelandic. We saw so many 'vegetable gardens' that were potatoes and rhubarb.

BTW, The Icelanders make a kind of Caramel Rhubarb jam, that I tried to duplicate. I just never had the nerve to let it get dark and thick enough.

Jun 22, 2023, 3:06 am

Eulen und Greifvögel Europas 4* Information and great photos of owls,eagles, falcons and such in Europe.

Jun 23, 2023, 5:51 pm

Editado: Jun 25, 2023, 6:42 am

Was bleibt? Was wird? 4 1/2* A German aristocrat and journalist who was married to a close relative of Queen Elizabeth II discusses her life and reign and how things might develop under Charles III. This isn't really a biography of the Queen, but more a commentary on Britain today. Written in German, it is not aimed at a British audience, but rather intended to help German understand how Britain functions. His mixture of close involvement and outsider position works well.

Editado: Jun 25, 2023, 10:47 am

Gordon Ramsay's Uncharted 3 1/2

OK, this was fun to read. I actually intend to try the pickled rhubarb. He runs out of ways to try to say that this or that region's seafood is the very best. And 1/2 stars off for having so much yellow on white text.


The Magician's Nephew

Jun 26, 2023, 5:18 pm

Jun 27, 2023, 12:26 pm

Immer Höher 4 1/2* So why did ai think I needed another mountain book, especially now that mountain climbing isn't an option any more (and wasn't back in 2017 when I bought this either)? I think most mountain books would have upset me. This one delighted me.

Franz Hohler has taken a series of writings about mountain tops and put them together in order of height. These are not great tales of dramatic adventure, but rather of how an ordinary mountain experience raises the heart. His ordinary mountain trips brought mine to mind. The first storied mountain is 'only' 653m high. But this chapter set the tone for the book. It was not about competing for the peak, but enjoying the path. And it took me back to my early mountain trips.

As the mountains got higher I was reminded of learning about the mountains and starting rock climbing in a mountaineering course. At that point I could have started collecting peaks. Instead, we went for distance hiking, often over peaks, but never made the peaks themselves our goal.

I miss the mountains. I remember so well the last time we climbed to a hut in southern Austria. The forest had a wealth of butterflies to show us on the way back down. I miss the mountains so much.

Franz Hohler took me back up.

Jun 28, 2023, 2:55 am

The Last Battle
The Chronicles of Narnia

Of course, the question is now: In my catalogue, this counts as one book read this month, because I have a one volume copy of The Chronicles. On the other hand, it could be counted as seven books. Which count do I use?

Jun 28, 2023, 6:04 am

>87 MarthaJeanne: I’d count seven.

Jun 28, 2023, 8:23 am

>88 2wonderY: Then I already have 31 this month. There are another 3 or 4 that might also make it.

Jun 28, 2023, 9:08 am

Vielheit Deleted. Will return to the library unread.

Jun 28, 2023, 3:42 pm

The Rule of Saint Clare This is a very short document found online (

I would think that this would need a lot of interpretation to be usable.

Editado: Jun 29, 2023, 3:05 pm

Small Island (Parker) 4* An interesting history of Britain.

Editado: Jun 30, 2023, 8:22 am

Als Oma das Papier noch bügelte 4* Discarding.

I think that's it for this month. 32.
To read is at 195.

Editado: Jul 1, 2023, 6:24 am

Mäda & Mäda, Greiner 4* When you read a novel based on the life of someone, you never know what you are getting yourself into. In this case it is more biography than novel. This tells the life of Eugenia Primavesi, 1874–1962, called Mäda and a little bit also her daughter of the same name. She was part of the Viennese art scene of the early 20th century. The cover art is taken from Klimt's portraits of the two Mädas This never really comes alive as a novel, but is also never boring.

I find it interesting to see Mäda Sr. listed on the web as an 'Austrian actress' She was Austrian, originally from Vienna, had a short career as an actress in Ölmutz (now Czechia) and Breslau (now Poland), before leaving the stage when she married at age 20. She and her family moved to Vienna after WWI.

Greiner has apparently written a similar book about Emilie Flöge which I plan to borrow from the library.

Jul 3, 2023, 8:41 am

Jul 4, 2023, 7:43 am

Gender : in world perspective 3* The most interesting thing about this book is that it was written by Australians. Howver, I read the 2015 third edition. Previous editions were 2002 and 2009. There is also a 2020 fourth edition. My impression was that many new references were added in 2009, but fewer in 2015, and even those were getting out of date. I might have reacted better to the fourth edition, Gender is one of those areas where a lot of change is going on, and discussions of what was going on 10 years ago are just old.

Editado: Jul 5, 2023, 11:02 am

I'm trying to figure out why I am reading Pretty Young Rebel

Obviously, I saw it at the library. It is by a woman author I had not read before. It's not very long.

On the other hand, the exploits of Bonny Prince Charlie in the Outer Hebrides is not a major interest of mine. Apparently the heroine of the book also ends up in the American Revolutionary War. But first we have to smuggle the Prince out of Scotland.

It's a biography that came out last year, so far it has two ratings (4 and 5) and no reviews. On one of her other books I found 2* review that said,"on & on & on & on about everything surrounding the Princesses in minute detail." I think that's sort of my feeling here.

I guess I'll stick it a bit longer.

Editado: Jul 5, 2023, 5:01 pm

Editado: Jul 6, 2023, 5:01 pm

Von schrumpfenden Tintenfischen 4 1/2* I have to say that while this is an excellent book, well written, interesting, and all that, it is also the scariest thing I have seen about climate change. Hanson is a biologist, and he brings example after axample of how climate change is affecting nature.

Editado: Jul 8, 2023, 6:56 am

I went to the shop that sells books off cheaply. They have an English table, and if I don't go too often, they are a good source of chick lit by female authors I haven't yet entered. Yesterday I found 6 books. I just entered them - not a good take. Three I already had, one of the others is male. Oh, well.

Jul 8, 2023, 2:00 pm

Editado: Jul 9, 2023, 5:25 am

Canisius, Katechismus I read (or at least skimmed) the translation, but not the introductory and critical sections. I found it interesting, but very longwinded. Canisius was very sure that as a priest and a member of an order he was a higher being than those who aren't. I really do pity the poor school boys who had to work their way through this in Latin. Omnia Gallia ... was bad enough.

Editado: Jul 10, 2023, 9:27 am

Pretty Young Rebel 3*

>97 MarthaJeanne: Well, I did keep reading, and found the chapters on her time in North Carolina more interesting than the rest of it. A lot more detail throughout than I would have needed, or at least different detail.

You wouldn't think that a woman who suffered for her devotion to the Stuart dynasty would thirty years later be devoted to the Hannover side and suffer for that.

Jul 11, 2023, 3:45 am

Jul 12, 2023, 10:07 am

Jul 13, 2023, 12:42 pm

I've given The Fallen Angel well over the 50 pages. I am not really interested, it's the third book in a series, and reading reviews of the first two books, they i terest me even less. And the book is over 400 pages. Discard.

Jul 15, 2023, 4:28 pm

Around the World in 72 Days You hear so much about all the things Nellie Bly did. What doesn't get mentioned often enough is that she was a very good writer. 4 1/2*

Jul 16, 2023, 5:09 am

Editado: Jul 17, 2023, 7:44 am

What a friend we have in Jesus 2 1/2*

This is a boring and confusing listing of lots of 18th and 19th century figures. Without knowing them it is very hard to follow. If you already do know them, you hardly need this book.


Jul 17, 2023, 12:12 pm

Changes 4* Being a woman is difficult.

Jul 20, 2023, 2:34 pm

Changes Yes, I know. Same title as >110 MarthaJeanne:? Very different book.

Jul 21, 2023, 3:43 pm

Theology Brewed in an African Pot 4* This was very interesting.

Jul 24, 2023, 1:47 pm

Jul 25, 2023, 4:51 am

Editado: Jul 26, 2023, 11:28 am

I went to check the mailbox, and The Face of Water was in it. It is going right into Currently Reading, as I am enjoying Paul among the People so much.

I also just ordered The Gospels and her translation of Lysistrata

Jul 26, 2023, 12:15 pm

The Long Way to a Small Angry Planet 3* This is actually very well written, with interesting characters. It just doesn't really have a plot.

Jul 27, 2023, 12:11 pm

Paul among the People 4 1/2*
I really liked this. There are, of course some people with major objections.

1) Many quotations from Greek and Roman texts would be rated at least "R". Obviously the discussions of them are also not for delicate souls. You've been warned.

2) Ruden has no background in theology and should therefore keep her mouth closed. Well, that's the point. Ruden is a practicing Christian, and at least as well acquainted with the Bible as any but a very few lay people. She can read the New Testament in the original Greek, which the vast majority of theologically trained clergy can't. The real expertise she brings to the project is a wide knowledge of the surviving literature of the world Paul was moving in. I was fascinated to hear where that took her.

3) We all know that Paul was sexist, homophobic, approved of slavery, and altogether not the kind of person we approve of. Except we tend to forget that Paul had a major part in changing western culture so that we are getting a lot closer to the ideals he preached. Reading about how thought-provoking some of his opinions must have looked at the time was a big help to me.

Editado: Jul 28, 2023, 4:11 pm

phantastisches 4* I love these artists. This is not their best work, but the catalogue to an exhibit of their early work. Still good to look through.

BTW I have visited the private museums of Fuchs and Brauer.

Jul 29, 2023, 2:09 pm

Editado: Jul 30, 2023, 4:36 pm

I'm giving up on Their eyes were watching God. A combination of not really liking the main character, and having trouble with the language. 3*

Not even starting Funny Girl (Hornby). The print is ridiculously small.

Those two can go back on Tuesday. Good, I had them for another two weeks, but then they couldn't be renewed again.

Jul 31, 2023, 3:05 pm

I'm not going to finish anything tonight, so my count for July is 25.

Editado: Ago 2, 2023, 3:51 pm

The Good Immigrant 4 1/2*
21 minority writers describe their lives in the UK. It is rare to find an anthology as evenly excellent as this one. The essays are very different, and all very worth reading. The sad thing is that after 21 different takes, you get to feeling quite discouraged.

Ago 3, 2023, 2:17 pm

Editado: Ago 4, 2023, 4:56 pm

Lysistrata in Sarah Ruden's translation is a real joy. Don't get me wrong, I enjoyed Douglass Parker's rendering as a college student, but in the few sections I compared, Ruden is much more alive. Many of the bawdy bits were so mildly worded in the older version that I probably didn't get them at the time.

Having notes right on the page is a great help, and her commentaries at the end and the preface are very helpful.

Ago 4, 2023, 5:09 pm

>124 MarthaJeanne: An old favorite. I might have to look for Ruden’s take.

Ago 4, 2023, 6:44 pm

I liked her Paul book, and then decided that I had to get a few more of her books. When Lysistrata and the Gospels arrived, this was the one I really wanted to get my eyes into.

Editado: Ago 6, 2023, 5:04 pm

Jeder soll von da, wo er ist, einen Schritt näher kommen An interesting book. Navid Kermani is a German of Iranian background, born in Germany. He is writing about Islam and religion in general for his 12-year-old daughter. Some of it is amazingly simple and at the same time deep. At other times not.

Both he while growing up, and his daughter now had Roman Catholic religion classes at school, with the result that he knows the Bible and not just the Koran. However, while he often says that you can't put everyone in a religion into one pot, he often speaks of Christianity when he really means Roman Catholicism, and seems unaware of certain differences in how dogma would be expressed now as opposed to twenty years ago. He also ignores aspects of Islam that don't fit his arguments.

Many of the Koran quotes he gives are very beautiful, and certainly more understandable than the translations I have tried to read.

The problem is what sort of rating to give. Parts are certainly worth 4 1/2. Others would not quite make a 3. I guess I'll stick with 3 1/2, as with all its faults, I think this book is worth reading.

I have entered two other books by him. One I gave 4* to, the other I gave up on.

BTW the title is from an interesting story. Scheich Abu Said in the 11th century was a well known mystic, and came to Tus to preach. So many people wanted to hear him, that the ushers were having trouble fitting them all in. So the head usher announced that " Everyone, from the place where he is, should make one step nearer. The preacher then said, "This usher has said everything I wanted to say, and everything all the prophets have said." He turned and left the city.

Editado: Ago 7, 2023, 12:09 pm

Second Class Citizen 4*

Anyone responible for the cover gets 1/2*

I read this in German.

Ago 7, 2023, 2:36 pm

Curated Table 2* It was stupid to buy this book. Much of it is about food styling which makes me want to say, "Very pretty. Now where is some food meant to be eaten, and not just looked at.

Many of the contributors are vegan, or at least vegetarian. The one recipe that might be worth trying has as the first two ingredients coconut sugar and vegan butter. (I would use brown sugar and butter). The third ingredient is eggs.

The chapters by German speaking cooks were not in clear English.

Ago 10, 2023, 12:15 pm

Ago 11, 2023, 2:28 pm

Apparently Home is a great masterpiece. I don't see it. The characters are wooden, and the whole environment boring and unconvincing. Not wasting more time on it. 1*

Editado: Ago 13, 2023, 5:32 am

Remember to check Nuri Kochbuch.

(I only seem to half have it, but it is a recent entry and I combined it this morning.)

Ago 14, 2023, 2:19 pm

Geistliche Übungen Gertrude von Helfta I'm counting this as read, although most of it has just been skimmed. 2* She entered the monastery at age 5, so her life experience was rather limited.

Ago 15, 2023, 1:53 pm

Editado: Ago 16, 2023, 10:52 am

My conversation with Ruth about A Dress of Violet Taffeta is at and ff.

I really enjoyed it. 4 1/2*

What more can I say. Obviously the textiles were the original draw, but I really liked the characters. The Titanic doesn't really do it for me, but i think thatshe handled it well.

Ago 20, 2023, 3:26 pm

I tried reading From the Mouth of the Whale (in German). I didn't get very far.

Editado: Ago 21, 2023, 2:49 am

Magie Bergkristall 4*

I often stop to see what books are on display at the art section of the library. Last time it was this collection of essays about an exhibit of items made of crystal. I picked it up, and my immediate (spoken) reaction was 'heavy'. The librarian looked up and commented that it was good I had my walker to transport it with. I guess my reaction is still 'heavy'.

On the positive side, the essays are quite varied, and most were quite interesting. The editors probably encouraged the contributors to reduce repetition, although certain things did keep coming up. The quality of the pictures varied. I'm guessing that mostly pictures were used that already existed, and some did not do a good job of showing the objects to best advantage.

Oh, the objects! Many of them are just unbelievably beautiful. I have to admit to really coveting the ancient lizard sculpture. The others I would happily admire in pictures if I can't see them in museums. Just that lizard...

Ago 21, 2023, 7:49 am

>138 MarthaJeanne: Can you identify the lizard sculpture more exactly so that I can look for it? Please?

Editado: Ago 21, 2023, 8:14 am

It's in a museum in Brussels.,_Cortil-Noirmont_tumulus,_rock_...

Don't you think he would make a nice paperweight? Or just sitting on the windowsill?

BTW I had to get the book out of my library bag again. It weighs just over 2 1/2 kilos. It's heavy!

Ago 21, 2023, 8:39 am

>140 MarthaJeanne: Oh yes! Would love to see it with proper lighting. Those pictures surely don’t do it justice.

Ago 21, 2023, 8:45 am

You get the feeling that on some of the pictures the photographer is only interested in getting an image in the database to identify the object if it is ever stolen. Which, of course, is a valid purpose, and is a lot faster.

Ago 21, 2023, 10:01 am

I got distracted from a book I was reading, and ended up reading The Will to Believe. Over a hundred years old, but it makes good sense to me.

Ago 22, 2023, 2:27 pm

Before we were trans 4 1/2* Interesting. While calling itself 'a new history of gender', it seems to me that the point is not to be a history of gender, but to use historical stories to illustrate the liquidity of gender and the impossibility of fitting it into a limited number of categories.

Editado: Ago 23, 2023, 1:58 am

Mensagem removida pelo autor.

Ago 24, 2023, 7:26 am

When I ordered When Women were Dragons I saw that my library had The Ogress and the Orphans by the same author. 2* I did not enjoy it. Very preachy, Not very believable.

Ago 25, 2023, 11:16 am

Being dead is no excuse : the official southern ladies guide to hosting the perfect funeral This was amusing to read, but I'm glad I will never have to go to one of those funeral receptions.

Editado: Ago 26, 2023, 2:47 am

Der Heilige Geist 3* Discarding.

He lost track of the 'heilige' part of his title.

At the end he talked about three ways the universe could end, Big crunch, big rip, or big whimper. He apparently did not recognize T S Eliot's
This is the way the world ends,
This is the way the world ends,
This is the way the world ends,
Not with a bang, but a whimper.
(From The Hollow Men. No, I'm not a big Eliot fan, but my mother is, and my mind is cluttered with lots of Eliot quotes that she used torepeat a lot.)

Ago 26, 2023, 10:18 am

Editado: Ago 27, 2023, 2:55 pm

A Spell of Good Things Giving up. 2* Apparently, if I read another 100 pages or so, it will get better. Sorry. Discarding.

Basically the main character so far is a teenage boy. Teenage male Sturm und Drang doesn't interest me. There is a 28 year old female doctor who is apparently also important, but she is caught up in marriage expectations. Family pushing for marriage for marriage sake is another topic that would only interest me if I saw any sign that the woman involved was actually fighting it. I'm not sure this woman has any emotions.

Editado: Ago 30, 2023, 9:54 am

The Modern Cheesemaker 3 1/2* I can't quite bring myself to give four. This woman has totally unrealistic ideas of what is possible in a normal house. Of course it would be ideal to mature your cheese at 10° for several monthe, but not in my house.

However, the book is interesting, and has many good looking recipes, even if you cheat and use store bought cheese (from the supermarket, and not a specialty cheese store, horrors!) and not the home-made variety. If I were to make my own mozzarella - "you could whip up your own ball of creamy cheese" - I would not then mix it with spinach and artichoke and bake it to make a warm dip.

Ago 31, 2023, 2:01 pm

I don't foresee finishing anything more tonight. That makes 20 for August

I will start September by continuing in a new topic.
Este tópico foi continuado por MarthaJeanne - Thoughts on books 2023-third topic.