GNI BOOK CLUB [2]

Originally Posted by TI:

Anyone ever read books by Milan Kundera, Amos Oz, Irving Yalom?

or I am alone in my reading choices?

The last book I finished reading before I got my stroke two years ago was A Tale of Love and Darkness by Amos Oz, the Israeli writer. It affected me emotionally.

Finished reading Mission to Paris by Alan Furst. This is a historical spy novel set in France, Germany, Morocco and Hungary in 1938-39. And it's the second Alan Furst novel I've read, the first being The Foreign Correspondent seven years ago.

Arrite! My wife recommended this one. I'll peruse it over the coming weekend.

 

 

"SIDDHARTA" BY HERMANN HESSE 

 

In the novel, Siddhartha, a young man, leaves his family for a contemplative life, then, restless, discards it for one of the flesh. He conceives a son, but bored and sickened by lust and greed, moves on again. Near despair, Siddhartha comes to a river where he hears a unique sound. This sound signals the true beginning of his life -- the beginning of suffering, rejection, peace, and, finally, wisdom.

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR HERMANN HESSE

 

Hermann Hesse (1877-1962) was born in Germany and later became a citizen of Switzerland. As a Western man profoundly affected by the mysticism of Eastern thought, he wrote many novels, stories, and essays that bear a vital spiritual force that has captured the imagination and loyalty of many generations of readers. In 1946, he won the Nobel Prize for Literature for The Glass Bead Game.

 

* This will be an excellent read--that's what I was told.

 

Rev

 

 

Originally Posted by Rev:

Arrite! My wife recommended this one. I'll peruse it over the coming weekend.

 

 

"SIDDHARTA" BY HERMANN HESSE 

 

In the novel, Siddhartha, a young man, leaves his family for a contemplative life, then, restless, discards it for one of the flesh. He conceives a son, but bored and sickened by lust and greed, moves on again. Near despair, Siddhartha comes to a river where he hears a unique sound. This sound signals the true beginning of his life -- the beginning of suffering, rejection, peace, and, finally, wisdom.

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR HERMANN HESSE

 

Hermann Hesse (1877-1962) was born in Germany and later became a citizen of Switzerland. As a Western man profoundly affected by the mysticism of Eastern thought, he wrote many novels, stories, and essays that bear a vital spiritual force that has captured the imagination and loyalty of many generations of readers. In 1946, he won the Nobel Prize for Literature for The Glass Bead Game.

 

* This will be an excellent read--that's what I was told.

 

Rev

 

 

Great choice, Rev. I read it and consider it one of my personal Top 100 Books.

This book is banned in several countries but if you can get hold of a copy, it is interesting. I have a signed copy that I might sell on Amazon some day

 

By Way of Deception by Victor Ostrovsky

 

.....

Ostrovsky, a former Mossad agent, says its motto is "By way of deception, thou shalt do war"

Mossad, he says, provoked America's air strike on Libya in 1986 by making it appear that terrorist orders were being transmitted from the Libyan government to its embassies around the world. But the messages originated in Israel and were re-transmitted by a special communication device - a "Trojan horse" - Mossad had placed inside Libya

Mossad next moved against Saddam, drawing the United States to make war against him.  

 

Mossad murdered Robert Maxwell; it trained BOTH SIDES in the Sri Lankan civil war; it supported Moslem fundamentalists, to derail the peace process; and it planned to kill George Bush snr, in payback for the peace process he initiated!

 ............

 

it was a NY Times no. 1 best seller also.

 

 

 

 

OK! Amazon will have this book in my mailbox on Friday.

 

 

A CONFEDERACY OF DUNCES BY JOHN KENNEDY TOOLE

 

A Confederacy of Dunces is an American comic masterpiece. John Kennedy Toole's hero, one Ignatius J. Reilly, is "huge, obese, fractious, fastidious, a latter-day Gargantua, a Don Quixote of the French Quarter. His story bursts with wholly original characters, denizens of New Orleans' lower depths, incredibly true-to-life dialogue, and the zaniest series of high and low comic adventures"

 

* This should be lighthearted, fun reading. I had a good laugh just reading the title.

 

Rev

Finished reading Doctor Zhivago by Boris Pasternak. I first read this novel decades ago but couldn't understand much. This time it's better.

The story centres around Yuri Zhivago, a medical doctor and poet. It's set in Russia from the beginning of the last century and moves through people's lives during the 1905 aborted revolution, the First World War, the 1917 Bolshevik revolution and resulting civil war, and the Second World War.

Those were tempestuous times that affected economic relations, social relations and most of all, personal relations. Families broke up through emigration, displacement and political/ideological pressures.

Caught in the midst of the times were Doctor Zhivago, the three women in his life and their children. It's a tragic, touching, heart-warming and heart-rending realistic novel.

http://img1.fantasticfiction.co.uk/images/n46/n231997.jpg

Originally Posted by Gilbakka:
Originally Posted by Rev:

Arrite! My wife recommended this one. I'll peruse it over the coming weekend.

 

 

"SIDDHARTA" BY HERMANN HESSE 

 

In the novel, Siddhartha, a young man, leaves his family for a contemplative life, then, restless, discards it for one of the flesh. He conceives a son, but bored and sickened by lust and greed, moves on again. Near despair, Siddhartha comes to a river where he hears a unique sound. This sound signals the true beginning of his life -- the beginning of suffering, rejection, peace, and, finally, wisdom.

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR HERMANN HESSE

 

Hermann Hesse (1877-1962) was born in Germany and later became a citizen of Switzerland. As a Western man profoundly affected by the mysticism of Eastern thought, he wrote many novels, stories, and essays that bear a vital spiritual force that has captured the imagination and loyalty of many generations of readers. In 1946, he won the Nobel Prize for Literature for The Glass Bead Game.

 

* This will be an excellent read--that's what I was told.

 

Rev

 

 

Great choice, Rev. I read it and consider it one of my personal Top 100 Books.

oh rass iman got 98 more to read to come up with my top 100

Finished reading A PLACE WITHIN:Rediscovering India by Canadian award-winning writer M. G. Vassanji.

Vassanji, a descendent of Indian immigrants to East Africa, was born in Kenya and grew up in Tanzania. His great grandparents and grandparents had migrated in the 19th century from the Indian western state of Gujarat which is, incidentally, Mahatma Gandhi's birthplace.

In this book Vassanji recalls his journeys throughout India to acquaint himself with his ancestral homeland. He mixes his visual observations with historical background information. "India is not simple; it has a million parts," he writes.

I've read a number of books on India, but one thing that struck me about this one is my discovery of black people in India. These African Indians, called Sidis, are the descendants of traders and sailors who travelled from East Africa to the western coast of India long ago. There are thousands of Sidis in Gujarat today.

A Place Within: Rediscovering India

Finished reading The Ultimate Good Luck by Richard Ford. I decided to borrow this American novelist's book after reading about his "taut, compelling prose" and other nice things about him.

He became famous for The Sportswriter and Independence Day which Hollywood produced as movies.

Sadly, The Ultimate Good Luck didn't impress me. It's set in Mexico and focuses on drug lords, drug mules, killings, prison, plenty easy sex, etc. It has such a surplus of cuss words as to make the biggest GNI cuss bird look like a Boy Scout. For me it's B-rated pulp fiction. 

I-man done wid dis Richard Ford.

Finished reading THE STORYTELLER by Peruvian writer and Nobel Laureate Mario Vargas Llosa.

This book, a novel and memoir rolled into one, deals with historic relations between indigenous Amazonian Indian tribes in Peru and creole white Peruvians and foreigners.

The storyteller character is Saúl Zuratas who attended the same university as Mario in the 1950s and who abandons his law studies for ethnography, a field that leads him to the Amazonian Indians. He sums up his attitude thus: "We know now what an atrocity bringing progress, trying to modernize a primitive people, is. Let's not commit this crime. Let's leave them with their arrows, their feathers, their loincloths. When you approach them and observe them with respect, with a little fellow feeling, you realize it's not right to call them barbarians or backward."

Of course, Mario and others disagree with him, though sympathetic.

By the end of the 1970s Saúl is living full time among the scattered Machiguengas people and had become a troubadour of sorts, a reteller of their ancient myths and a source of news of other tribesmen. By then, too, there were big changes: industrial culture and modern technology combined to facilitate the rape of the forest and the acculturation and westernization of many Indians.

I enjoyed reading this book and plan to look deeper into the affairs of Amazonian Indians throughout South America.

http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51fA7dD96nL._SY344_BO1,204,203,200_.jpg

 

Finished reading Out of Sheer Rage: In the Shadow of D. H. Lawrence by Geoff Dyer.

Dyer is an award-winning British writer of 11 books. He is a fan of D. H. Lawrence and wants to write a book about him. Should he write a novel or a "sober, academic study of D. H. Lawrence"? After long considerations he decides on the latter. He gathers and reads books by and about Lawrence and travels to places where Lawrence lived, from Italy to New Mexico. After all that, he fails to complete his writing project.

Out of Sheer Rage is Geoff Dyer's account of his constant procrastination, diversions and eventual failure. Some parts of this book are hilarious and other parts informative.

http://geoffdyer.com/_wp/wp-content/uploads/2011/04/out-of-sheer-rage.png

OBAMA

The day after Black Friday last week was called Small Business Saturday in the United States. President Obama, with his daughters, stopped by his local bookstore Politics & Prose to pick up some books.

Here's a full list of the First Family's purchases:

All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr

Nora Webster by Colm Toibin

The Narrow Road to the Deep North by Richard Flanagan

The Laughing Monsters by Denis Johnson

Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad

Age of Ambition: Chasing Fortune, Truth and Faith in the New China byEvan Osnos

Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in the End by Atul Gawande

Brown Girl Dreaming by Jacqueline Woodson

Cartwheeling in Thunderstorms by Katherine Rundell

Redwall by Brian Jacques

Mossflower by Brian Jacques

Mattimeo by Brian Jacques

Junie B. Jones and the Stupid Smelly Bus by Barbara Park

Junie B. Jones and a Little Monkey Business by Barbara Park

A Barnyard Collection: Click, Clack, Moo and More by Doreen Cronin

I Spy Sticker Book and Picture Riddles by Jean Marzollo

Nuts to You by Lynn Rae Perkins

Originally Posted by Gilbakka:

OBAMA

The day after Black Friday last week was called Small Business Saturday in the United States. President Obama, with his daughters, stopped by his local bookstore Politics & Prose to pick up some books.

Here's a full list of the First Family's purchases:

All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr

Nora Webster by Colm Toibin

The Narrow Road to the Deep North by Richard Flanagan

The Laughing Monsters by Denis Johnson

Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad

Age of Ambition: Chasing Fortune, Truth and Faith in the New China byEvan Osnos

Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in the End by Atul Gawande

Brown Girl Dreaming by Jacqueline Woodson

Cartwheeling in Thunderstorms by Katherine Rundell

Redwall by Brian Jacques

Mossflower by Brian Jacques

Mattimeo by Brian Jacques

Junie B. Jones and the Stupid Smelly Bus by Barbara Park

Junie B. Jones and a Little Monkey Business by Barbara Park

A Barnyard Collection: Click, Clack, Moo and More by Doreen Cronin

I Spy Sticker Book and Picture Riddles by Jean Marzollo

Nuts to You by Lynn Rae Perkins

 

Gil

 

Great to see that you are in the reading league with the likes of President Obama.

 

Yuji also loves to read but once in a while, GNI acts as a form of distraction.

Finished reading JOSEPH CONRAD: A Biography by Jeffrey Meyers.

Conrad was an amazing man. Born in Russian-occupied Poland in 1857, he emigrated to England, learned the English language there, and eventually wrote some of the best books in English Literature. He is one of my favourite authors. When I departed from Guyana 18 years ago, one of the books I brought along to Canada was Conrad's novel Nostromo.

Jeffrey Meyers' biography of Conrad is excellent, well researched and readable.

Joseph Conrad: A Biography

 

 

Finished reading BELONGING: The Paradox of Citizenship by Adrienne Clarkson.

This book comprises texts of the CBC-sponsored 2014 Massey Lectures delivered by Ms Clarkson, Canada's 26th Governor-General and former CBC journalist.

She argues that there needs to be a sense of belonging between the individual and society. She gives examples in ancient Greece, France, Bhutan and Canada.

She shows how Canada has distinguished itself over time as a unique, caring, forgiving, pluralistic/multicultural society. "We belong to each other in this country," she says.

Acknowledging that Canada still has flaws to straighten out, Ms Clarkson says immigrants must be prepared to accept the bad with the good when they arrive here.

Belonging: The Paradox of Citizenship [CBC Massey Lectures)

Finished reading SOLAR by bestselling and prizewinning English novelist Ian McEwan. It's about a brilliant physicist who won the Nobel Prize and wide acclaim in scientific circles but who has a messy personal life.

This is the first Ian McEwan novel I've read and I will certainly get hold of more of his books. A fine writer he is.

Solar

Finished reading The Metamorphosis, a novella by Czech-born writer Franz Kafka. This is a simple tale that can be interpreted in more ways than one. A young travelling salesman, virtual breadwinner for ageing parents and young sister, wakes up one morning to find himself transformed into a cockroach-like insect. How does he live after that? What effect his metamorphosis has on his family?

Metamorphosis

This is most likely the last book I've read for 2014, making it #42, seven less books than I read last year. My reading plan for 2015 includes a number of classics. At last, I will take up Leo Tolstoy's War and Peace.

Originally Posted by Gilbakka:

OBAMA

The day after Black Friday last week was called Small Business Saturday in the United States. President Obama, with his daughters, stopped by his local bookstore Politics & Prose to pick up some books.

Here's a full list of the First Family's purchases:

All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr

Nora Webster by Colm Toibin

The Narrow Road to the Deep North by Richard Flanagan

The Laughing Monsters by Denis Johnson

Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad

Age of Ambition: Chasing Fortune, Truth and Faith in the New China byEvan Osnos

Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in the End by Atul Gawande

Brown Girl Dreaming by Jacqueline Woodson

Cartwheeling in Thunderstorms by Katherine Rundell

Redwall by Brian Jacques

Mossflower by Brian Jacques

Mattimeo by Brian Jacques

Junie B. Jones and the Stupid Smelly Bus by Barbara Park

Junie B. Jones and a Little Monkey Business by Barbara Park

A Barnyard Collection: Click, Clack, Moo and More by Doreen Cronin

I Spy Sticker Book and Picture Riddles by Jean Marzollo

Nuts to You by Lynn Rae Perkins

I lived a couple of blocks from that bookstore for some 10 years and spent lots of evenings there listening to lectures or readings by authors and getting my books signed. It is a cool place to walk to in the evenings to browse and read. They let you stay as long as you want.

 

Since the start of this year I've finished reading the following:

[1] CONSPIRATOR: Lenin in Exile by Helen Rappaport

[2] SWEET TOOTH by Ian McEwan

[3] THREE NIGHTS IN HAVANA by Robert Wright

[4] MY YEARS AS PRIME MINISTER by Jean Chrétien

[5] THE RELUCTANT FUNDAMENTALIST by Mohsin Hamid

Originally Posted by Gilbakka:

Finished reading The Metamorphosis, a novella by Czech-born writer Franz Kafka. This is a simple tale that can be interpreted in more ways than one. A young travelling salesman, virtual breadwinner for ageing parents and young sister, wakes up one morning to find himself transformed into a cockroach-like insect. How does he live after that? What effect his metamorphosis has on his family?

Metamorphosis

This is most likely the last book I've read for 2014, making it #42, seven less books than I read last year. My reading plan for 2015 includes a number of classics. At last, I will take up Leo Tolstoy's War and Peace.

The Metamorphosis is a great piece of writing. If you like Russian writers I highly recommend Nikolai Gogol. For me he is number one.

Originally Posted by antabanta:
Originally Posted by Gilbakka:

Finished reading The Metamorphosis, a novella by Czech-born writer Franz Kafka. This is a simple tale that can be interpreted in more ways than one. A young travelling salesman, virtual breadwinner for ageing parents and young sister, wakes up one morning to find himself transformed into a cockroach-like insect. How does he live after that? What effect his metamorphosis has on his family?

Metamorphosis

This is most likely the last book I've read for 2014, making it #42, seven less books than I read last year. My reading plan for 2015 includes a number of classics. At last, I will take up Leo Tolstoy's War and Peace.

The Metamorphosis is a great piece of writing. If you like Russian writers I highly recommend Nikolai Gogol. For me he is number one.

Anta, some time ago I read Dead Souls by Gogol. Many years ago in Guyana I had read his short story The Overcoat. I must read that story again. Touching.

Originally Posted by Gilbakka:
Originally Posted by antabanta:
Originally Posted by Gilbakka:

Finished reading The Metamorphosis, a novella by Czech-born writer Franz Kafka. This is a simple tale that can be interpreted in more ways than one. A young travelling salesman, virtual breadwinner for ageing parents and young sister, wakes up one morning to find himself transformed into a cockroach-like insect. How does he live after that? What effect his metamorphosis has on his family?

Metamorphosis

This is most likely the last book I've read for 2014, making it #42, seven less books than I read last year. My reading plan for 2015 includes a number of classics. At last, I will take up Leo Tolstoy's War and Peace.

The Metamorphosis is a great piece of writing. If you like Russian writers I highly recommend Nikolai Gogol. For me he is number one.

Anta, some time ago I read Dead Souls by Gogol. Many years ago in Guyana I had read his short story The Overcoat. I must read that story again. Touching.

Absolutely. He has a collection of short stories on the same level as Poe. Also Taras Bulba is a masterpiece, and quite different from the movie.

Finished reading the novel SHE by H. Rider Haggard. Since this book was first published 128 years ago it has never been out of print. It's about a journey three Englishmen made to 19th century east Africa to find out about an ancient family history. Adventures, misadventures, tragedy, and a living 2,000 year-old-white queen combine to make the story interesting.

When I was 11 years old I borrowed SHE from the Uitvlugt Community Centre Library but couldn't understand anything and returned it mostly unread. Now, 53 years later I decided to borrow it from the Toronto Public Library and I like the story so much I wonder why it took me so long to get my hands on it.

Originally Posted by Gilbakka:

Embedded image permalink

Bookie, hubby beat you in reading...

One day I asked him when last he read a novel... he said to me "I read 3 to 4 books per day; 5 days a week.  That's enough reading for me."

I am sure you get what he is hinting about...

 

 

Finished reading Glimpses of a Global Life by Shridath Ramphal. I am indebted to this outstanding Guyanese whom I've long admired and respected since the early 1970s when he was Minister of Foreign Affairs. His public speaking skills were on par with Forbes Burnham's. His writing skills are just as remarkable. This book retraces his working life from constitutional lawyer in Jamaica to Commonwealth Secretary General to chancellor of three universities and so on.

Originally Posted by TI:

Bogart in jail

Bogart actually existed, you know.

Many years later, VS Naipaul traveled to Venezuela and met him there. By then, Bogart had outlived his Miguel Street personality and was more subdued.

Originally Posted by Gilbakka:
Originally Posted by TI:

Bogart in jail

Bogart actually existed, you know.

Many years later, VS Naipaul traveled to Venezuela and met him there. By then, Bogart had outlived his Miguel Street personality and was more subdued.

wow I had no idea, tnks for letting us know.

 

i like 'Man Man' and 'Laura doux doux' makes me laugh everytime i remember that part in the book

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