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Showing posts from April, 2015

Top Ten Books I Wish People in Baltimore (and Everywhere) Were Reading Instead

So, I was going to post the regular Top Ten Tuesday, but tonight, my hometown is on the news all over the nation. I hear all kinds of reports from all kinds of angles--including multiple people who are in the city right now. What happened, and has been happening, in our city and other places, is shameful. People do not deserve to be mistreated because of the color of their skin---or anything else. Protesting is a natural reaction. Rioting, unfortunately, is too. Here's what I wish people were doing instead of rioting AND instead of complaining about rioters--trying to find a way to stop and listen. And sometimes, there's no better way to do that than to read. 1. Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry by Mildred D. Taylor It's a kids' book, but hear me out. I think I first began to understand the depth of inequality while reading this book and its sequels. Cassie Logan grows up on her family's land in the 1930s, and begins to realize the racism directed at her and her fa

My Top Ten All-Time Favorite Authors

Happy Top Ten Tuesday! As the Broke and Bookish bloggers note, it's cruel to restrict only to ten. But I'll do my best. 1. J.R.R. Tolkien The Man and His Pipeweed 2. Louisa May Alcott The Grown-Up Authoress 3. Madeleine L'Engle She Wrote for Children When It Was Too Hard for Adults 4. L.M. Montgomery Queen of Italics 5. Leo Tolstoy The Man Who Gazes into Your Soul 6. Jane Austen The Woman and Her Bit of Ivory 7. William Shakespeare The Man and His Pen 8. Tanuja Desai Hidier The Woman With the Voice 9. Junot Diaz The Man with the Linguistic Backseat Driver 10. Ann Brashares The Woman Who Believes in Sisterhood (Or Used To...)

Book Review: The Republic of Imagination

16. The Republic of Imagination by Azar Nafisi Azar Nafisi, author of the classic Reading Lolita in Tehran , turns her attention to her adopted country's relationship with literature. In Reading Lolita , Nafisi and her students escape the oppression of their circumstances through defiantly reading American literature. In Imagination , she belies the claim that because Americans have not experienced oppression, we do not appreciate our own literature. She defends the importance of literature, of the realm of thought that she dubs "the Republic of Imagination," which, she insists, is the true locus of our ability to innovate and to remain free. What is characteristic of both Nafisi's memoirs-in-books, and what sets them apart from the many books that have aped the concept since Reading Lolita came out in 2003, is that while she is not afraid to relate her personal reactions to books, she also provides analytical close readings that bring readers face-to-face wi

Top Ten Inspiring Quotes from Books

Happy Top Ten Tuesday! 1. "All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given us." -Gandalf 2." Like and equal are not the same thing at all!" -Meg Murry 3. "It was no passive homogenous creature, identity, but rather diversity, a thrashing, grinding, and all out dirty dancing together."-Dimple Lala 4. "He raised his wings and spread them wide before folding them again. 'There,' he said, 'I have just brushed ten million other worlds, and they knew nothing of it.'" -Serafina Pekkala's daemon 5."People who hate to make choices, to settle on one thing or another, are attracted to travel." -Elisabeth Eaves 6. "Whoever we were--and it was not really important what religion we belonged to, whether we wished to wear the veil or not, whether we wished to observe religious norms or not--we had become the figment of someone else's dreams." -Azar Nafisi 7 "Imaginativ