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Showing posts with label books. Show all posts
Showing posts with label books. Show all posts

29 September 2011

A BBC list of 100 books

A BBC meme asks how many of the 100 books of a list they published have you read.  Library Thing comments that "the BBC apparently believes most people will have only read 6 of the 100 books."  It's probably true to me. While I read two Harry Potter books and Da Vinci Code twice, I managed only parts of numbers 7-13 on my list: (Library Thing link has the complete list; see how many have you read)


1. Pride and Prejudice - Jane Austen
2. Jane Eyre - Charlotte Bronte
3. Harry Potter series - JK Rowling
4. Wuthering Heights - Emily Bronte
5. Bleak House - Charles Dickens
6. The Da Vinci Code - Dan Brown
7. Adventures of Sherlocke Holmes - Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
8. Little Women - Louisa May Alcott
9. Anne Shirley of Green Gables - Lucy Maud Montgomery
10.  The Bible
11.  The Complete Works of Shakespeare
12.  Moby Dick - Herman Melville
13. A Tale of Two Cities - Charles Dickens

Megan and Janet host Thursday Thirteen

20 April 2011

Never let me go

Never Let Me Go
  Kazuo Ishiguro
- a novel I am reading for a book club meeting I am attending on the last week of this month. Being 'pop sci-fi thriller' it's not what I normally read but exploring new nooks of genre is nifty. 

Characters of this novel (2005) are children raised in a boarding school in East Sussex, England as clones intended to provide organs for non-clones. A film adaptation of the same title was released in 2010.

Never Let Me Go
Hazel, Delineating Des
 
Baby, never let me go
Kathy sings as she hugs her pillow
Madame watches her and cries
Kathy later asks her why
And Madame replies:
because I see this little girl
A new world she is facing
An efficient but cruel world
But it is emerging
Never let me go
To the old world
The little girl is asking.


This post is linked with ABC Wednesday.

24 March 2011

Little Women

Thirteen things I remember from reading experiences as a kid:

1. A rhinoceros having his first birthday party - the main character of my first animal book. I remember my parents taking me to the city, we came back with loads of books.

2. Tell It Again Series - books that my mother read to me. I remember images of papyrus, the Nile River, an ark, a sling shot, a taskmaster beating a slave, an ark. If you haven't guessed it yet these are illustrated Bible stories.

2. Clue in the Crumbling Wall, NDM. This book ignited my love for mystery

3. High Road to China - could not finish it so my father told me the rest on the staircase of our rented Spanish house.

4. The Aeneid by Virgil. Even in English I didn't understand it. I lasted til the end of the first page which was about half A4

5. Bible. It's not an ordinary book at home. My mother made sure I understood it was a holy book and was treated with utmost respect. I read it without understanding it.

6. Violet Winspear. A Mills and Boon author

7. Irving Wallace. Author of a book a friend stole from a schoolmate's Dad, the town doctor

8. Little Women by LMA. The book that kicked off my appetite for reading the classics. Mrs Librarian was getting uncomfortable lending us the book because some of us were getting addicted to it and other classics so I made sure I got my hands on it. Anything forbidden, try me.

9. Cosmopolitan. An uncle left an issue in our living room. It was my initiation to vanity.

10. Forgotten title; of a book that made me go "is that so?" It dealt with guns and silencers

11. Uncle Tom's Cabin by HBS - didn't read it but it's what I think of every time I remember Noli Me Tangere (Touch Me Not) a novel written by Dr Jose Rizal. Rumor has it that Uncle Tom's Cabin was the inspiration behind Rizal's Touch Me Not, a book which led to his execution

12. Kitty Bishop, and there was an Adam Malone - character names I still remember

13. Pacific Aphrodite - some romance

Megan and Janet host Thursday Thirteen

17 February 2011

It's not what it seems so don't wander

Lazaruz Vault by Tom Harper tells of knights and castles; a 12th century poem kept deep in a Scottish forest. The star character, a gradschool student lured by old world affluence, is wondering about what lies on the 6th floor of her employer's headquarters as much as I furrowed my brow over some words in the story. There could be more as I haven't touched chapters 20 - 53 yet. I make each vocabulary simple with just the obvious term of the definition and reminders intended to warn my mind against wandering off.

1. hauberk is a shirt not a partner in crime

2. bittern is a bird not a betel nut

3. fascia is tissue not a hue

4. vavasour is a tenant not a sour guava

5. breton is a horse not a variant spelling of briton

6. brigand is an outlaw not a brigadier

7. declension is an inflection not necessarily a decline

8. donjon is a keep not a dungeon

9. seneschal is a butler not Senegal in the 2000 FIFA World Cup

10. fewter is a holder not Harry Potter's cauldron

11. letch is a satyr not the grub in Lion King

12. tannoy is a loudspeaker not a tan alloy

13. proscenium is a wall not "Mr Van Helsing, your reputation precedes you."

Megan and Janet hosts Thursday 13.

07 October 2010

'Cambridge is a complex place'

... observes the Duke of Edinburgh. Someone from Cambridge University Press came to speak to us. He gave away Cambridge: 800th Anniversary Portrait to a Thai teacher, who handed the book to me as if she was glad to get rid of it. (It's ok. She doesn't read, nor speak English) Into my lap a treasure fell. Some days must be bright and cheery :-)


1. "As an undergraduate I was persuaded that the Dons were a wholly unnecessary part of the university. I derived no benefits from lectures, and I made a vow to myself that when in due course I became a lecturer I would not suppose that lecturing did any good. I have kept this vow." Bertrand Russell, The Autobiography of Bertrand Russell, 1967 (p.53)

2. "Cambridge, wet, cold, abstract, formal as it is, is an excellent place to write, read and work." Sylvia Plath, writing to her mother, 1956, from Letters Home, 1975 (p. 17)

3. "Dear Sir, I will be obliged to you to order me down 4 Dozen of Wine, Port, Sherry- Claret, & Mandeira, one Dozen of Each; I have got my Furniture in, and begin to admire College Life. Yesterday my appearance in the Hall in my State Robes was Superb, but uncomfortable to my diffidence." George Gordon Lord Byron, letter to John Hanson 1805 (p. 38)

4. "The churches in the town... are half empty." Nobel laureate Francis Crick writes to Sir Winston Churchill in 1961 (p. 263)

5. "We have mathematical lectures, once a day - Euclid and algebra alternately. I read mathematics three hours a day - by which means I am always considerably before the lectures, which are very good ones. Classical lectures we have had none yet-nor shall I be often bored with them. They are seldom given and, when given, very thinly attended." Samuel Taylor Coleridge, letter to his brother George, 1791 (p.49)

6. The marble index of a Mind for ever, Voyaging thro' strange seas of Thought, alone. William Wordsworth on Isaac Newton's statue in Trinity College (p.61)

7. "Although we shall presently see, there were redeeming features in my life at Cambridge, my time was sadly wasted there... but as some of my friends were very pleasant, and we were all in the highest spirits, I cannot help looking back at those times with much pleasure." Charles Darwin, His Life Told in an Autobiographical Chapter, edited by his son Francis Darwin, 1902

8. "...almost my favorite museum is the Fitzwilliam at Cambridge." Alan Bennett, Art, Architecture and Authors: Untold Stories, 2005 (p.209)

9. If you are a Jew or a Buddhist, you will have to make an effort to find out about the relevant religion groups and societies. If you are a Moslem you will find your needs badly catered for in Cambridge, and will have to work especially hard. Whether you're a Christian or not, you won't have to wait more than a few days before CICCU catches up with you." Varsity Handbook, 1980-1 (p.256)

10. "Animal behavior: chaffinches, meerkats and man" subtitle on the Biological and Medical Sciences page understandably with mention of Robert Hinde, Jane Goodall's PhD supervisor (p. 241)

11. "in a world rocked by greed, misunderstanding and fear, with the imminence of collapse into unbelievable horrors, it is still possible and justifiable to find the exact placing of two pebbles." Jim Ede in 1957 (p. 212)

12. "The game is more important than the score" motion of Anne Mallalieu's (first woman to be elected president of the Union Society) debate (p.192)

13. "'This is the city of dreaming spires,' Sheila said. 'Theoretically that's Oxford', Adam said. This is the city of perspiring dreams.'" From the Glittering Prizes, Frederick Raphael, 1976 (p.115)

Click here for more Thursday Thirteen

03 September 2010

This I give to you (pamana) and birthday week highlights

This is a 2-in-1 post today. I sort of incorporated the contents as they are related and fall into similar concepts for both memes which are equally significant to me. If you are dropping by from Mommy Moments, please scroll down. Thanks. Friday's Fave Five, hosted by Susanne at Living to Tell the Story is right next -

It's probably a matter of orientation: I am used to uneventful birthdays. What I'm not used to is missing a few things. But I didn't and this week's faves are about what I'm thankful for the most:

1. Monday which was the day came and went peacefully. No issues at work, I ate what I wanted to eat, did a little shopping and I easily found the 'celebration' restaurant for tomorrow. I'm excited.

2. Greetings from good friends. I didn't expect anyone to call or email but they did and I appreciate that.

3. A promise in the sky, woot! See heaven's kiss on earth to boot.

4. Ticket to David Foster and Friends concert in October purchased with a 10% discount. My seat is not too close to the stage that I'd be having Peter Cetera's heels on my nostrils, and not too far that I'd be squinching for Natalie Cole's facial expression. I'm anticipating a lovely night with the Canadian Tenors, Ben Studdard and The Hitman himself.

5. Cj's progress. This has to be my best birthday present. While watching a second cousin fix my mother's dog's leash, he uttered, "oh, it's entangled." The other report is that he sang Into my heart and Bayang Magiliw (national anthem) by himself last night. He also minded his homework which involved reading. I like the reading part. Selective mutism now sounds a bit less daunting. Celebrating my birthday tomorrow will be yummier.

***********************

No, I'm not bequeathing my son a bookstore. Although the idea is wonderful and if I owned one he'd naturally inherit it when I'm gone. As I am no rich Mama, Cj will just have to settle on books that I am accumulating. One goal is to instill in him a love for reading.

Not very long ago, my ex went pensive on me, "If I die suddenly there's --- for Cj from my ---. The lawyers will sort it out." I thought of the divorce mess that Cj is caught in and quietly realized, "no hon, you go pray to your Buddha while I drop on my knees to my own God and hope that our kid develops faith in a power that will help him rise above this adversity we caused him."

A long shot, I know. But despite the setback I'm banking on the value of non-material things for Cj to live a happy life he deserves.

See what Moms are passing on to their kids at The Mommy Journey.

05 March 2010

Internetlessly happy


It's Friday and time to identify highlights of the week:

A young reader to nurture
After getting over a bill fright when an expensive overseas call had gone on for almost an hour, I rang cousin Vi to see when can we have another slumber party (read: splurge on food and talk all night). Vi described her 8-year old son's developing love for reading and knack for observing things. My ears perked up. It's my kind of news! Then Vi said, "I hope he'll be like you..." She didn't have to say that to make me look up my bookcase and check what could I give the boy. I'm inspired already.

Jesus in Blue Jeans and Anne Frank's Tales from the Secret Annex
These are the only books so far available in my stack most likely suitable for Kakoy (Vi's blossoming bookworm) and I'm reviewing them for him. I'm delighted anew at the gems on the pages, and having a grand time thinking of what else to send him.

Welcome surprise from the author
I included these titles (preceding faves) in my Thursday 13 list yesterday, and this morning I found a comment that goes like this: Thanks so much for your recent post and for mentioning my book Jesus in Blue Jeans. Blessings on your path. Laurie Beth Jones

No internet
The very state freaks me off, so what makes it a fave? It has become a good tool in curbing Ceejay's appetite for Ultraman. I don't like what I see in those clips. Ceejay's stubbornness at getting what he wants could sometimes be overpowering. My lack of time to deal with it is alarming. The absence of the internet turns out a big, quick help. I no longer care that I have to go out to get on with life, like right now I'm on an internet cafe. It's a relief not to worry anymore.

A new routine
So I surprised myself by not making that frantic call to the internet service provider to fix my connection pronto! I offered Ceejay an alternative: back to his Bible Story Books. I'm happy that he conceded. "Circle," he calls Elijah's raven-delivered manna. No more late nights. Here's to a better style - creep out of bed at 4 AM to blog. Bye bye Ultraman.

Susanne hosts Friday's Fave Five. Read more faves or join us at Living to Tell the Story.

04 March 2010

Bookcase status

One thing I'm trying to control about my reading habit is succumbing to the temptation of buying more books than I can carry in my luggage when it's time to move to a permanent place. The bookcase I got is space-limited, city-ish. My hoarder instinct makes it a major object in my daydreams: ship the contents home when I'm finally through with Bangkok.

header by Samulli; click here for more lists

These are book(s) in my bookcase I read:

...devour more like
1. Harry Potter 1-7 by JK Rowling

passage by passage
2. A Purpose Driven Life by Rick Warren

in less than 4 hours
3. Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown

to satisfy my curiosity
4. Empty Promises Vol. 7 and other true cases by Ann Rule

to pass the time away
5. Prince Charming: The John F. Kennedy Story by Wendy Leigh

for entertainment
6. The Complete Neurotic by Charles A. Monagan
7. You Don't Say I forgot the author but it's about identifying people who should be credited for famous quotations we know, like some of Shakespeare's lines we think are his but they can actually be traced back to someone else before him
8. Why Good Girls Don't Get Ahead but Gutsy Girls Do by Kate White

as insomnia pills
9. Compendiums of Bronte and Austen novels
10. Short Stories from the 19th Century compiled and introduced by David Stuart Davies

because it's necessary and I enjoy them at the same time
11. How to Negotiate Anything with Anyone Anywhere Around the World by Frank L. Acuff; Communication Research Measures edited by Rubin, R.B., Palmgreen, P. & Sypher, H.E.; Anthropology: exploration of human diversity (international edition) by C.P. Kottak

and these are books I'm reviewing for a cousin's 8-year old bookworm son
12. Jesus in Blue Jeans by Laurie Beth Jones
13. Anne Frank's Tales from the Secret Annex by Contact Publishing

11 February 2010

Austenuating Jane Austen

Two weeks ago I wrote an essay in a bid for a PhD slot in a university in the southwestern pacific. Just when I was about to send it over, I realized that if I were offered a place, the very topic I built a case on would send me back to Thailand for data-gathering. I didn't fancy that and decided to work on something that will keep me afloat should I face drudgery at some point in the research. Since I have always been a fan of a rector's daughter who was a writing machine at a time when a king's son ruled England, I happily spent hours breezing through massive literature on her. Jane Austen, the name that could launch a thousand nights of delightful observations.

Except for the titles in bold font, I listed them according to how they appear on Literary History. They should help me nail an idea on how to proceed with brainstorming later. If I ever change my mind about the unfinished essay yet again or even abandon PhD for some reason, I know I won't regret the pleasure of this reading experience:

1. Ascarelli, Miriam. "A Feminist Connection: Jane Austen and Mary Wollstonecraft." Persuasions 25 (2004).

2. DeForest, Mary and Eric Johnson. "Computing Latinate Word Usage in Jane Austen's Novels." A description of a computer-aided study developed to identify the use of Latinate language by characters in Jane Austen. Computers and Text (2000).

3. Graham, Peter W. "Born to Diverge: An Evolutionary Perspective on Sibling Personality Development in Austen's Novels." Persuasions 25 (2004).

4. Graves, David Andrew. "Vocabulary Profiles of Letters and Novels of Jane Austen and her Contemporaries." Persuasions 26 (2005).

5. McCawley, Dwight. "Assertion and Aggression in the Novels of Jane Austen." McCawley makes use of the distinction between assertion and aggression from popular books on "assertiveness training" to discuss Austen's characters. Persuasions 11 (1989).

6. Nelles, William. "Omniscience for atheists: or, Jane Austen's infallible narrator." Narrative (2006). On the comparison of the narrator to God.

7. Zunshine, Lisa. "Why Jane Austen was different, and why we may need cognitive science to see it." Style (2007).

8. Ellwood, Gracia Fay. "'Such a Dead Silence:' Cultural Evil, Challenge, Deliberate Evil, and Metanoia in Mansfield Park." Persuasions 24 (2003).

9. Duckworth, W. "Reading Emma: Comic Irony, the Follies of Janeites, and Hermeneutic Mastery." Persuasions 24 (2003).

10. Gilbert, Deirdre E. "'Willy-Nilly' and Other Tales of Male-Tails: Rightful and Wrongful Laws of Landed Property in Northanger Abbey and Beyond." Persuasions 20 (1999).

11. Jones, Susan E. "Thread-cases, Pin-cushions, and Card-racks: Women's Work in the City in Jane Austen's Persuasion." Persuasions 25 (2004).

12. Rytting, Jenny Rebecca. "Jane Austen Meets Carl Jung: Pride, Prejudice, and Personality Theory." Persuasions 22 (2001).

13. Dinkler, Michal Beth. "Speaking of Silence: Speech and Silence as a Subversive Means of Power in Jane Austen's Sense and Sensibility." Persuasions 25 (2004).


Megan and Janet host
header by Samulli; click here for more lists

04 February 2010

Chat snippets

At night when work is done, two old maids chat. These are random snippets from their late night cyber tete-a-tete, which no longer is in this case. This is six weeks worth of observations of the state of things about and around them. Besides disclosures that one is a mama, and the other a medical doctor, most likely you can easily spot giveaways to infer their general philosophy and theorize their old maid status.

Header by Samulli. Megan and Janet have more lists here.

1. My stuttering fingers...

2. I dive feet first... Australia in October ... after suffering and embarrasing myself doing PhD I'd like something lighter like learn how to fly a helicopter and before the luggage joins the cobwebs - PEI: Anne Shirley of Green Gables; Chawton: Jane Austen


3. Happy sabbath, mareng (mareng is slang for matron) ... he probably doesn't know how patrician National Trust staff are


4. You? cry over a guy? no way!... 007 as in James Bond?... and you thought he's in touch with reality....

5. I chatted with Ivan on Facebook. He was looking for you. He said he liked secrets. I told him some things are better left unsaid... I'm glad there's a distance between us.

6. Stolen hours... clueless Florence Nightingale mutants ... a dangerous addiction

7. Neither of us have dates. We could howl at the blue moon during countdown

8. I hope the photos load properly then you can see my Robin Hood's merry men leggings... I didn't have time to buy a camera last night ... we'll just have to bear with my antique camera then

9. My OT was even worse before, 36 hours straight ... I love it here. No deaths, no CPR... would you practise medicine again? I'd love to see you with a steth slung on your neck

10. I miss my lunch hour to get a trim... though I miss my long hair that covered my back acne

11. Little guy discovered the wonders of the mouse... he drew my face on my research notepad, but he misplaced my eyes.... Alright you go lullabye first. I'm watching youtube's Blue Lagoon.

12. I'm getting bookish again; reading at night and doing the sweats... reading a book by a first novelist called Run for Home... I prefer the real book, not the ebook. I just love looking at a filled bookshelf especially if it's mine.

13. Real books have the advantage of readability in the prone, supine, and lateral decubitus position.

29 January 2010

Purple Pack Rat

Friday's Fave Five: Pack Rat
Please scroll down for Friday Photo Flashback


Time piece

I woke up on Wednesday morning to find my alarm clock registering 8.10 a.m. "Since I'm already late," I acknowledged the verdict as I yawned my way to the shower, "I might as well prepare Cj's breakfast and eat with him before I go." When I arrived in the computer room at work, I got a happy surprise: the time was 7.55, not 8.55. Yes! I wasn't late after all. My clock has served me quite well for more than 7 years, and even in its old and malfunctioning age has done so to my advantage. This must be why sometimes I am a pack rat.

Restaurants

With Mommyhood, a full-time job and work on PhD applications going full-blast, whatever little time I have left for cooking is all wiped out and I raise my hands up in surrender. I am thankful that restaurants are readily available which means Cj and I do not go hungry. We've been having dinners out the entire week and I'm grateful that the menu at our choice japanese restaurant is balanced and nourishes us just fine.

Hongkong & Macau flights confirmed and paid

That's a big chunk off my to-do list. CJ and I send our thank-you hugs to super duper Uncle Nuj for booking our trip online.

Lovely chat with C
It started off with champagne at the cruise we're going to do in Hongkong and ended with best wishes on each other's future plans. We dreamed. Who knows what we old maids invent in our fiercely stubborn little heads when we chat? When it happens, I'll be happy to share it with friends.

Related research

In the course of scouring journal and research databases, I discovered that major variables of my former professors' recent research are not too far from what I have been putting so much time on. I am feeling the highs.

Susanne hosts
Head over to Living to Tell the Story for more faves

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Friday Photo Flashback: Purple
Please scroll up for Friday's Fave Five

Purple is my favorite color. This must be one reason why I quickly wandered into this part of a not so secret garden. I was a newly-wed when I toured the north of Thailand 8 years ago. This is the Princess Mother's garden in Chiangmai. I loved it there. With beauty all around and a temperature below 28C all I need is a mug of coffee with a Jane Austen classic and I could spend a good few hours either admiring or despising Mrs Bennet's matchmaking skills.

2002

Alicia hosts


Head over to
More Than Words for more flashbacks

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