Book review: The Emperor of Lies, by Steve Sem-Sandberg

I don’t like writing book reviews. I like reading books and telling you I’ve read them, and maybe giving a thumbs up or down. Reviewing them requires mental effort that is better spent starting a new one. Nevertheless, I need to earn my little piece of blog space, so I will write something. The Emperor…

Book review: The Unconquered, by Scott Wallace

Image by CIFOR via Flickr An adventure in the Amazon is always at the top of my bucket list, even though I’ve could have crossed it off after my 2009 trip to Peru. The Unconquered is subtitled “In Search of the Amazon’s Last Unconquered Tribes” and that pretty much sums it up. Published in 2011, the…

Book review: The Thorn Birds, by Colleen McCullough

Yes, I know this review is about 35 years overdue, but this is a book I somehow never got around to reading before (nor did I see the TV series or the recent Korean film). Now that I am educating myself about Australian “culture” I decided it was time to request a library copy of…

Book review: The Sea, by John Banville

“Winner of the Man Booker Prize 2005” I wouldn’t give him any prize for this depressing book. It was certainly skillful, and the language impressive. Good vocabulary exercise, for example… leporine proscenium declivities of my shoulders concave integument below his breast-bone an interior succubus a clear ichor glinted pharaonic nostrils [I can guess this one]

Fowler’s Modern English Usage; Bryson’s The Mother Tongue

A linguist’s blog on the most annoying grammar mistakes has inspired me to review two of my favourite books (see my page called Favourite Things). I am surprised by how many language fans are not familiar with the classic by H.W. Fowler – Modern English Usage, and I am dismayed because they are missing a wonderful thing . I…

Book: Sideways on a Scooter, by Miranda Kennedy

The city library has an email newletter for which you can select categories of interest. This book was featured in the ‘travel’ category. Subtitled “Life and Love in India,” it is written by an American journalist who lived in India for several years in her 20s. The book is not a a funny-style travel memoir…