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2023-05-30 20:11
The Swimmers by Julie Otsuka“{We] glide serenely through the water, safe in our knowledge that we are nothing more than a blurry peripheral shape glimpsed in passing through the f… Read More
2023-05-18 13:50
A River Runs through It by Norman Maclean"One of life's quiet excitements is to stand somewhat apart from yourself and watch yourself softly becoming the author of something beautiful… Read More
2023-05-17 15:56
Illusions of Camelot: A Memoir by Peter BoalDance is like life. It exists as you are flitting through it, and when it's over, it's done.   --   Jerome Robbins I enjo… Read More
2023-05-08 20:24
The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter by Carson McCullers“The Heart is a lonely hunter with only one desire! To find some lasting comfort in the arms of anothers fire...driven by a despera… Read More
2023-05-07 14:38
Find Me by André Aciman“Everything in my life was merely prologue until now, merely delay, merely pastime, merely waste of time until I came to know you.”  &nbsp&hell…Read More
2023-04-26 20:43
The Complete Poems by Thomas HardyThe last thirty years of Thomas Hardy's life was devoted to poetry. During this time after he had eschewed novel-writing he wrote hundreds of poems. Th… Read More
2023-04-23 12:57
The Prince of Tides by Pat Conroy“Her library would have been valuable to a bibliophile except she treated her books execrably. I would rarely open a volume that she had not desec… Read More
2023-04-17 15:26
Dreams of My Russian Summers by Andreï Makine“The unsayable! It was mysteriously linked, I now understood, to the essential. The essential was unsayable. Incommunicable. And… Read More
2023-04-11 20:29
Ordinary Grace by William Kent Krueger“The dead are never far from us. They’re in our hearts and on our minds and in the end all that separates us from them is a single brea… Read More
2023-04-10 19:55
The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde  by Robert Louis Stevenson“I learned to recognise the thorough and primitive duality of man; I saw that, of the two natures that c… Read More
2023-03-30 11:13
Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison“I remember that I'm invisible and walk softly so as not awake the sleeping ones. Sometimes it is best not to awaken them; there are few things in th… Read More
2023-03-22 01:31
Serious Things by Gregory Norminton"Though he did not consent to friendship, the tall and beautiful English boy had acknowledged my existence."   - Gregory Norminton, Serious… Read More
2023-03-12 19:18
Landscape: Memory by Matthew Stadler“If all memories decay, what of them will really ever be left? What is it that's growing from out of the rotting material of old memories? Is e… Read More
2023-03-09 20:04
The Friend by Sigrid Nunez“Consider rereading, how risky it is, especially when the book is one that you loved. Always the chance that it won't hold up, that you might, for whatev… Read More
2023-03-08 17:34
Cicero by D.R. Shackleton Bailey“Read at every wait; read at all hours; read within leisure; read in times of labor; read as one goes in; read as one goest out. The task of the ed… Read More
2023-03-07 15:16
War and Peace by Leo TolstoyThe Death of Prince Andrew BolkonskiOn the Pratzen Heights, where he had fallen with the flagstaff in his hand, lay Prince Andrew Bolkonski bleeding profusel… Read More
2023-03-05 21:20
Gone with the Wind by Margaret Mitchell“I'll think of it tomorrow, at Tara. I can stand it then. Tomorrow, I'll think of some way to get him back. After all, tomorrow is another d… Read More
2023-02-17 02:28
Confederates in the Attic: Dispatches from the Unfinished Civil War by Tony Horwitz“There are people one knows and people one doesn't. One shouldn't cheapen the former by fei… Read More
2023-02-15 00:46
Independent People by Halldór Laxness “This was the first time that he has ever looked into the labyrinth of the human soul. He was very far from understanding what he saw… Read More
2023-02-10 17:35
The Last Kabbalist of Lisbon by Richard Zimler“God comes to each of us in the form we can best perceive Him. To you, just now, He was a heron. To someone else, He might come as a… Read More
2023-02-08 17:45
Leopoldstadt by Tom Stoppard Here’s a couple waving goodbye from the train, but who are they? No idea! That’s why they’re waving goodbye. It’s like a second dea… Read More
2023-01-26 17:03
Rats, Lice and History by Hans ZinsserBut however secure and well-regulated civilized life may become, bacteria, Protozoa, viruses, infected fleas, lice, ticks, mosquitoes, and bedbugs… Read More
2023-01-22 19:57
Things We Lost to the Water by Eric Nguyen“In America, Ben felt like a foreigner, too, but in a different way, He couldn't have explained it. In New Orleans, he couldn't have… Read More
2023-01-12 22:42
Saint Joan by George Bernard Shaw"The most inevitable dramatic conception, then, of the nineteenth century is that of a perfectly naive hero upsetting religion, law and order in all dir… Read More
2023-01-07 22:58
The Lincoln Highway by Amor Towles“Wouldn’t it have been wonderful, thought Woolly, if everybody’s life was like a piece in a jigsaw puzzle. Then no one person’s… Read More
2023-01-06 21:33
The Good Doctor by Damon Galgut“The funny thing is, I don't care too much. You think you love something so badly, but when it's gone you find out you don't care so much.”&nb&hell…Read More
2022-12-29 17:29
Young Man From The Provinces: A Gay Life Before Stonewall by Alan Helms"I studied my face in the mirror. I was good-looking, yes, but there were guys at Columbia better looking tha… Read More
Top Ten Reads Of 2022
2022-12-22 22:17
 Annual Top Ten Favorites Top Ten Favorite Books of 2022These are my favorite reads since January 1, 2022.  They include an extensive variety of reading: from the Classics to… Read More
2022-12-22 19:40
A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles“He had said that our lives are steered by uncertainties, many of which are disruptive or even daunting; but that if we persevere and remain ge… Read More
2022-12-20 19:29
How Beautiful We Were by Imbolo Mbue“But my father used to say we can’t do only what we’re at ease with, we must do what we ought to do.”   ― Imb… Read More
2022-12-16 20:23
Casals and the Art of Interpretation by David Blum“I feel the capacity to care is the thing which gives life its deepest significance.”   ― Pablo Casals… Read More
2022-12-15 16:54
The Unpunished Vice: A Life of Reading by Edmund White“Many people like books because they’re suspenseful or scary or touching or inspirational or because one admires t… Read More
2022-12-15 16:32
Termination Shock by Neal Stephenson“There was an odd bending around in back at the extreme limits of culture and politics where back-to-the-land hippies and radical survivalists… Read More
Read To Live
2022-12-10 01:26
 Enchantment"'There's some extraordinary things in books,' said the mariner." - H. G. Wells (1) I have found in my current rereading of Don Quixote that an extraordinary challenge wa… Read More
2022-11-27 14:28
If Not, Winter: Fragments of Sappho by Sappho"Eros, that slackener of limbs, twirls me again---bittersweet, untamable, crawling thing.but you, Atthis, hate the thought of me,and go… Read More
2022-11-27 14:13
Calculating God by Robert J. Sawyer “There is no indisputable proof for the big bang," said Hollus. "And there is none for evolution. And yet you accept those. Why hold the questi… Read More
2022-11-14 13:57
Our Fathers by Andrew O'Hagan“We couldn’t complete the world or ourselves. We could only live, and look for small graces, and learn to accept the munificence of change.&rdqu&hell…Read More
2022-11-13 23:58
The Chosen by Chaim Potok"'Reuven, listen to me. The Talmud says that a person should do two things for himself. One is to acquire a teacher. Do you remember the other?" Choose a friend… Read More
2022-11-06 14:28
The Wasp Factory by Iain Banks“Sometimes the thoughts and feelings I had didn't really agree with each other, so I decided I must be lots of different people inside my brain.&rdqu&hell…Read More
2022-10-28 08:12
Tau Zero by Poul Anderson The epic voyage of the spacecraft Leonora Christine will take her and her fifty-strong crew to a planet some thirty light-years distant. But, because the ship… Read More
2022-10-27 14:38
The Sorrows of Young Werther by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe“I have so much in me, and the feeling for her absorbs it all; I have so much, and without her it all comes to nothing.&r&hell…Read More
2022-09-27 19:03
The Essential Plotinus by Plotinus“We must close our eyes and invoke a new manner of seeing, a wakefulness that is the birthright of us all, though few put it to use.” … Read More
2022-09-26 13:52
ABC of Reading by Ezra Pound“Good writers are those who keep the language efficient. That is to say, keep it accurate, keep it clear. It doesn't matter whether the good writer wan… Read More
The Mystery Of Oneself
2022-09-05 15:19
Confessions by Augustine of Hippo“And men go abroad to admire the heights of mountains, the mighty waves of the sea, the broad tides of rivers, the compass of the ocean, and the c… Read More
2022-09-04 12:15
English Passengers by Matthew Kneale“All at once I felt myself haunted by a terrible vision, of a world without guidance: a land of emptiness, where all was ruled by the madness o… Read More
2022-09-02 21:24
The Dog in the Chapel by Anthony McDonald“Tom & Christopher and Their Kind.”― Anthony McDonald, The Dog in the Chapel A story of two young men, 21 and 18, who fell… Read More
2022-09-02 21:09
Madame Bovary by Gustave Flaubert“Love, she thought, must come suddenly, with great outbursts and lightnings,--a hurricane of the skies, which falls upon life, revolutionises it… Read More
2022-08-11 22:06
Essays in Understanding, 1930-1954 by Hannah Arendt“Words used for the purpose of fighting lose their quality of speech; they become clichés. The extent to which clich… Read More
Portrait Of Lenin
2022-08-11 14:26
Lenin in Zurichby Alexander Solzhenitsyn Alexander Solzhenitsyn introduces Vladimir Ilyich Lenin, the key character of his planned multi-volume chronicle of Russian revolutionary histor… Read More
2022-08-02 17:04
I and Thou by Martin Buber “This is the eternal origin of art that a human being confronts a form that wants to become a work through him. Not a figment of his soul but something… Read More
The Smell Of Burning Books
2022-07-31 15:18
 An Insubstantial PageantThe smell of burning books permeates the air.It hovers about those engaged in daily activity,Yielding a strange sense of bittersweet victory.Forcing our selves… Read More
A Pious Man
2022-07-30 16:08
Jobby Joseph Roth"One must write, even when one realises that the printed word can no longer improve anything. To the optimists, it might seem an easy thing to write. To the sceptics - not t… Read More
2022-07-28 22:21
Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy"She said she was sorry for Pilate. In Christ's expression there should be pity because there was love in it, a peace not of this world, a readiness for deat… Read More
2022-06-27 19:45
The History of Rome: The War with Hannibal by Livy“Indeed, that is the nature of crowds: the mob is either a humble slave or a cruel master. As for the middle way of liberty… Read More
2022-06-20 16:21
The Crying of Lot 49 by Thomas Pynchon“I came," she said, "hoping you could talk me out of a fantasy." Cherish it!" cried Hilarious, fiercely. "What else do any of you have? Hold… Read More
2022-06-14 14:36
Philosophy and the Return to Self-Knowledge by Donald Phillip Verene "Socrates was the first to call philosophy down from the heavens."--- CiceroThis is a book dedicated to the imp… Read More
2022-05-31 19:39
The Promise by Damon Galgut“Apartheid has fallen, see, we die right next to each other now, in intimate proximity. It's just the living part we still have to work out.”&nbsp&hell…Read More
2022-05-27 16:19
Odes, and Carmen Saeculare by Horatius“Not him with great possessions should you in truth call blest; with better right does he claim the name of happy man who realizes how to mak… Read More
A Reading Memory
2022-05-20 14:43
 The Reading Room “To read well, that is, to read true books in a true spirit, is a noble exercise, and one that will task the reader more than any exercise which the customs… Read More
2022-05-15 15:43
The Aeneid by Virgil“Do the gods light this fire in our hearts or does each man's mad desire become his god?”         ― Virgil, The AeneidThe… Read More
2022-05-15 15:07
The Rector of Justin by Louis Auchincloss“I was sophisticated enough to know that the written word is no mirror of the writer’s character, that the amateur, though a selfles… Read More
2022-05-10 19:53
My Salinger Year by Joanna Rakoff“To read Salinger is to engage in an act of such intimacy that it, at times, makes you uncomfortable. In Salinger, characters don't sit around con… Read More
2022-05-05 15:29
The Warden by Anthony Trollope“In former times great objects were attained by great work. When evils were to be reformed, reformers set about their heavy task with grave decorum a… Read More
2022-05-04 21:27
Openly Straight by Bill Konigsberg“It’s hard to be different,” Scarborough said. “And perhaps the best answer is not to tolerate differences, not even to accept… Read More
2022-04-30 20:49
The Early History of Rome: Books I-V of the History of Rome from its Foundation by Livy“The study of history is the best medicine for a sick mind; for in history you have a record… Read More
2022-04-18 15:53
The Education of Corporal John Musgrave: Vietnam and Its Aftermath by John Musgrave"When you were out in the bush and someone screamed, it was easy to tell the difference between s… Read More
2022-04-17 22:25
Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury“I still love books. Nothing a computer can do can compare to a book. You can't really put a book on the Internet. Three companies have offered to pu… Read More
2022-03-31 23:03
Transcendent Kingdom by Yaa Gyasi“...We humans are reckless with our bodies, reckless with our lives, for no other reason than that we want to know what would happen, what it migh… Read More
2022-03-15 16:33
Wittgenstein's Vienna by Allan Janik & Stephen Toulmin"those who are ignorant of the context of ideas are . . . destined to misunderstand them. " - p 27. Set in the hot bed of… Read More
2022-03-11 00:12
When You Catch an Adjective, Kill It: The Parts of Speech, for Better And/Or Worse by Ben Yagoda"The adverb is like the adjective only more so. . . . H. L. Mencken referred to it a… Read More
2022-03-06 18:48
Interior Chinatown by Charles Yu“Unofficially, we understood. There was a ceiling. Always had been, always would be. Even for him. Even for our hero, there were limits to the drea… Read More
2022-02-27 16:02
Duino Elegies and The Sonnets to Orpheus by Rainer Maria Rilke“Let everything happen to youBeauty and terrorJust keep goingNo feeling is final”― Rainer Maria Rilk… Read More
2022-02-21 16:31
Memoranda during the War by Walt Whitman"I was in the habit of reading to the men. They were very fond of it, and liked declamatory poetical pieces."   ― Walt Whitman, p… Read More
2022-02-20 21:29
There There by Tommy Orange“Life will do its best to get at you. Sneak up from behind and shatter you, into tiny unrecognizable pieces. You have to be ready to pick everything up… Read More
2022-02-07 15:37
The New World of Philosophy by Abraham Kaplan"To describe a man's philosophy is to say how he orients himself to the world of his experience, what meanings he finds in events, what… Read More
2022-02-01 01:46
The Committed by Viet Thanh Nguyen“The typical American preferred the canned version of philosophy found in how-to manuals, but even average Frenchmen and Vietnamese cherished a l… Read More
2022-01-27 21:07
The Annals by Tacitus“So obscure are the greatest events, as some take for granted any hearsay, whatever its source, others turn truth into falsehood, and both errors find encoura… Read More
2022-01-04 20:32
Sappho by Sappho Tonight I've watchedThe moon and thenthe Pleidesgo downThe night is nowhalf-gone; youthgoes; I am                    … Read More
2022-01-03 16:03
Klara and the Sun by Kazuo Ishiguro“Mr Capaldi believed there was nothing special inside Josie that couldn’t be continued. He told the Mother he’d searched and searche… Read More
Poem For The New Year
2021-12-31 18:53
 Good Riddance, But Now What?By Ogden Nash Come, children, gather round my knee;Something is about to be.Tonight’s December thirty-first,Something is about to burst.The clock… Read More
2021-12-28 14:50
Pure Pagan: Seven Centuries of Greek Poems and Fragments by Burton RaffelTo ZeusZeus, in whom all things begin,Ruler of  everything,Zeus, to begin my hymnsI bring You thisAs a… Read More
2021-12-21 15:41
Deacon King Kong by James McBride“He felt like a radio tuning in to a new channel, one that was beginning to fuzz into range, slowly coming in clear, proper, the way his Hettie… Read More
Annual Top Ten Favorites
2021-12-14 19:47
 Top Ten Favorite Books of 2021These are my favorite reads since January 1, 2021.  They include an extensive variety of reading: from the Classics to contemporary literary fiction;… Read More
2021-12-10 20:38
The Border Trilogy: All the Pretty Horses, The Crossing, Cities of the Plain by Cormac McCarthy "The fire burned down and it grew colder and they sat close to the flames and hand f… Read More
2021-12-01 16:34
Cities of the Plain by Cormac McCarthy"The fire burned down and it grew colder and they sat close to the flames and hand fed them with sticks and with old brittle limbs they broke from… Read More
2021-11-15 16:02
Hamnet by Maggie O'Farrell“He has, Agnes sees, done what any father would wish to do, to exchange his child’s suffering for his own, to take his place, to offer himself up i… Read More
2021-11-01 20:31
Say Nothing: A True Story of Murder and Memory in Northern Ireland by Patrick Radden Keefe“Who should be held accountable for a shared history of violence? It was a question… Read More
2021-11-01 20:26
The Handbook by Epictetus“Freedom is the only worthy goal in life. It is won by disregarding things that lie beyond our control.”“The key is to keep company only with… Read More
2021-10-18 14:28
The Thanatos Syndrome by Walker Percy“he believed that there is no end to the mischief and hatred which men harbor deep in themselves and unknown to themselves and no end to their… Read More
2021-10-15 15:02
In a Free State by V.S. Naipaul"All at once the lilies lost their brightness; it grew dark below the trees; the swamped garden was silent.  The stream raged on.  On the other… Read More
2021-10-01 01:32
Lysistrata and The Clouds by Aristophanes“What doesn’t polite society, in all seriousness, want to discuss? Sex, money, political corruption, bodily functions, religion, los… Read More
2021-09-21 23:33
The Second Coming by Walker Percy“How did it happen that now he could see everything so clearly. Something had given him leave to live in the present. Not once in his entire life… Read More
The Chief Horror
2021-09-13 14:30
The Forest “The whole forest was peopled with frightful sounds--the creaking of the trees, the howling of wild beasts, and the yell of Indians; while sometimes the wind tolled lik… Read More
2021-09-12 15:52
Shuggie Bain by Douglas Stuart“He had long perfected the art of staring through people, leaving conversations to follow his daydreams through the back of their heads and out any… Read More
2021-09-03 01:32
Lancelot by Walker Percy“Can good come from evil? Have you ever considered the possibility that one might undertake a search not for God but for evil? You people may have been on… Read More
2021-08-29 20:23
Stoner by John Williams"That time of year thou mayst in me beholdWhen yellow leaves, or none, or few, do hangUpon those boughs which shake against the cold,Bare ruin'd choirs, where lat… Read More
2021-08-28 15:05
Nathaniel Hawthorne's Tales by Nathaniel Hawthorne"Nathaniel in his turn would walk the ways of Salem, town and village, and ghosts would keep him company, never quite visible , lurking… Read More
2021-08-27 19:54
The Landmark Julius Caesar: The Complete Works by Gaius Julius Caesar“In war, events of importance are the result of trivial causes.”   ― Julius Caesar… Read More
The Study & Library Of Cervantes
2021-08-13 16:56
The House of Miguel de Cervantes in Valladolid, Spain*"In Valladolid, readers of Don Quixote can stroll through the house occupied by Miguel de Cervantes from 1602 to 1605, the year in which… Read More

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