Monday, 1 August 2011

What truth is and how to act on it...

... is a sub-heading in a book I am reading about the programming language C++. It contains no philosophical insights as such. (Unless you think that treating 1 (or any other number) as true and 0 or null as false implies agreement with the Augustinian vision of evil as parasitic on the good, having no independent existence.)

Anyway I thought I'd comment on a few good books I read in July.

1. Cathleen Schine, The Three Weissmanns of Westport. This is a modern retelling of Sense and Sensibility, which sounds like it could be awful, but is actually deftly and lightly done. It's amiable enjoyable reading of the sort which doesn't insult your brain but doesn't make you stretch it either. I shall look for more things she's written.

2. George R. R. Martin, A Dance with Dragons. Aaaagh! I am so addicted to these novels that it is not funny. I used to have opinions on them and now I just want to know what's going to happen next. I would recommend them very strongly except for the fact that the series will be a good few more years in the finishing. Perhaps wait until the last one's out and then you can splurge on them all at once.

3. Rhoda Janzen, Mennonite in a Little Black Dress. I already blogged about this. It's great. I want to be like her, only without marrying someone with BPD who leaves me for a man he met on

4. Barbara Pym, A Glass of Blessings. So wry it almost hurts, like licking a cut lime. Even though her books are amusing and don't deal with anything too deep, somehow when I've finished reading them I feel like I've been lightly punched in the stomach. A brilliant author.

5. Chris Priestley, Uncle Montague's Tales of Terror, and The Teacher's Tales of Terror. These are very good. They're older child/young adult reading really, but sufficiently well done that they catch you out with little moments that are genuinely chilling. I shall read more in the series sometime when I want some spooky tales. Better than Susan Hill's ghost stories, as far as I'm concerned.

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