February Book Log

March 1, 2017

Keeping right on pace with where I want to be. Currently in the midst of a very long Robert Penn Warren novel I’d probably have finished if I hadn’t been struck down by the plague for about a week and a half.

  1. When We Were Orphans by Kazuo Ishiguro (4.5/5) – I probably qualify as an Ishiguro fan boy at this point, but everything I’ve read by him has been really, really good. As with a lot of his writing, this deals with the difficulty of forming and desire to form meaningful connections. In this instance, it’s through the lens of orphanhood with a vaguely Holmes-ian backdrop. Ishiguro has the most creative settings and circumstances. Anyway, read this. It’s good.
  2. The Ten Most Beautiful Experiments by George Johnson (4/5) – This was a Folio Society book that I won at Christmas time (nice little present) and was a great deal of fun to read. It is exactly what it says it is (more or less). A recounting of ten very beautiful instances in which experimentation was effective in advancing our knowledge. It’s nicely written and recommended if you have even a passing interest in science.
  3. Observations by Marianne Moore (2.5/5) – Meh. This poetry was – for the most part – far to formulaic and dependent on rhyme. Which is, I realize, a product of the era to some extent. There is a section in the middle where she moves into free verse and I very much enjoyed those. But, in general, this volume was not my cup of tea.
  4. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee (5/5) – I mean, there’s nothing to say about this. Taught it for the first time in years. Still great.
  5. A Zero-Sum Game by Eduardo Rabasa (4/5) – I have VERY high standards for novel-length satire and this came very near meeting them all. It is a frightening indictment of the way value is placed and distributed in Western society and extremely apt in our current political climate. It takes just a little too long to get where it’s going, but it is very well done overall.