Friday, March 30, 2007

The Screwtape Letters

Author: C. S. Lewis
Published: 1942

Originally a series published in a newspaper, the letters are from one demon to his nephew. The uncle advises the younger demon on the best way to tempt a human to doubt the teachings of Christianity. This is one of the few books I put down without finishing (seems to happen more lately than in my youth). Within the velvet glove of the prose is an iron fist of Christian proselytizing. After a dozen chapters I had to throw in the towel.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

The Salt Roads

Author: Nalo Hopkinson
Published: 2003

Interesting tale that has three main characters, women of African descent, at three different time periods: late 1700's slave plantation in the carribean, late 1800's Paris, and then a real curveball into 300 AD, Middle East. There are also some gods which can take residence in the women. Very well written (I'm not doing it justice here, but then this isn't really an attempt to review books as much as keep track of them). I think it would have been more successful by just focusing on the two main characters without adding in the Middle East. On the other hand, I could be missing the point on that. One caution: contains very racy scenes which may challenge some people.

Monday, March 12, 2007

Lord Arthur Savile's Crime and Other Stories

Author: Oscar Wilde
Published: 1887 - 1889

Plenty of wit and hilarity but also, to my surprise, many stories in the fashion of a fable with a moral at the end. Also, quite a few make a stand for the poor and destitute, quite contrary to my impression of Wilde's work.

Thursday, March 8, 2007

Bill, The Galactic Hero

Author: Harry Harrison
Published: 1965

Bill is swept up into the galactic army in its fight against the Chingers. Hilarity ensues. Amusing satire bordering on the silly. Reminded me quite a bit of Catch-22 by Joseph Heller.