Book report #28 (2020)

Permanent Record, by Edward Snowden. Pub 2019 This was the last of the vacation reads - a gift from my sister at Christmas last year, and long overdue to read. I've stayed up late a few nights this week with this one. Edward Snowden needs no introduction as the whistleblower of the US NSA mass... Continue Reading →

Book report #24 (2020)

I'm Thinking of Ending Things, by Iain Reid. Pub 2016 I don't recall when I ended up with this book, or why - I think I may have read a blurb online, but I know now that I mistakenly thought this was a different author (Iain Banks). Since I purchased it, the book has received... Continue Reading →

Letters on film

This year's first cinematic list takes a look at letters in movies (or epistolary film, which I was somewhat surprised to learn is not only a genre, but has subgenres). As my lists must include films I've actually seen, my own experience of examples is somewhat limited. Here are the ones I know and love:... Continue Reading →

Book report #3 (2019)

French Exit, by Patrick DeWitt. Pub 2018 This was another recommendation from a book-loving friend – he has been right every time, and this was no exception. This novel is fun, funny, shocking, and thoroughly enjoyable. Telling the story of Frances Price and her son, Malcolm, the self-described “tragedy of manners” is a modern homage... Continue Reading →

Books on Film

Time for another cinematic list. Since I’m putting a lot of effort this year (although clearly not right now) into reading, I thought a list of adaptations of novels into film, where the makers got it just right, would be apropos. My rule for this list – I have to have both read the book... Continue Reading →

Early experiences in science

April 27th is Tell-a-Story Day. It is also what would have been my Pop’s 71st birthday. Time for another story with him. Pop did his PhD in the mid- to late-Seventies, on the topic of cocaine. Specifically, the study looked at the effects of coca leaf extracts on the physiology of rats, as a way to understand... Continue Reading →

Food on Film

Another cinematic list, about another favourite topic - food. Eating is a universal activity, and yet it doesn't get portrayed very well or often in movies. Here are some of my favourites, for times when you want to eat vicariously or need culinary inspiration. Babette's Feast (1987, Gabriel Axel). Starring Stéphan Audran, Birgitte Federspiel, Bodil... Continue Reading →

Book report #1 (2018)

The Elements of Eloquence: Secrets of the Perfect Turn of Phrase, by Mark Forsyth. Pub 2013 I found this book after seeing a Facebook post about the section on hyperbaton (defying the logical/grammatical order of words in a sentence). Hyperbaton covers three areas: prepositions (Shut up!), vowel order (tic-tac-toe), and word order (esp. adjectives and adjective-noun).... Continue Reading →

Book report #15 (2017)

American Gods, by Neil Gaiman. Pub 2001 My longest read so far, but totally worth it. I'm not normally a fantasy-genre reader, but a) I'd heard from several reliable readers that this book was good, b) there's a mini-series out now based on it, which looks very good after the first few episodes*, c) I... Continue Reading →

Book report #5 (2017)

The Sense of an Ending, by Julian Barnes. Pub 2011 This is a book I've read before (more than once), which is something I've done with a few books by Julian Barnes. This is a short one - just ~150 pages - but it is as full and evocative as his other writings. The characters are... Continue Reading →

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