Thursday, June 28, 2007

Buy, Buy, Baby by Susan Gregory Thomas and Pesthouse by Jim Crace

A couple more books that we are discussing for the award that I liked...Buy, Buy, Baby: How Consumer Culture Manipulates Parents and Harms Young Minds by Susan Gregory Thomas. One of the subjects that I am interested in and have been reading about for a long time is brain development. I have been reading about the impact that media and advertising has on the cognitive development of young children for years, starting with the brilliant book Amusing Ourselves to Death by Neil Postman. (I have also read giant stacks of books about brain differences between the sexes but that is a different story). Buy, Buy Baby is probably the most focused and accessible of the bunch. It is interesting how the (marketing hating Gen-X generation) has been manipulated by that very industry. Facinating.

I also liked Pesthouse by Jim Crace. This takes place in a post-industrial society where violence is rampant. This was very compelling although it was difficult for me to not compare it to my favorite book from last year (The Road by Cormic McCarthy) but this was such a different vision of the future that it was an engrossing read. I still like his book Being Dead better though.

Thursday, June 07, 2007

A bit more than beach reads...

I went to a workshop this morning that featured hot new reads, mostly focusing on light “beach” reads. I decided to put together an “if you want to stretch yourself a bit” list. I will also do a little “Beach Reads” one later for those who just want fun reading this summer.

Books that are a bit on the challenging side…

Kafka on the Shore by Haruki Murakami
People’s Act of Love by James Meek
Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell
On Beauty by Zadie Smith
Seeing by Jose Saramago
Suite Francaise by Irene Nemirovsky
Falling Man: A Novel by Don DeLillo
Life of Pi by Yann Martel
Death of Vishnu: A Novel by Manil Suri
Being Dead: A Novel by Jim Crace
Waiting: A Novel by Ha Jin
Voodoo Heart by Scott Snyder

And for those of you who want to go one step further…one that will make your head explode.

Against the Day by Thomas Pynchon (be sure to bone up on your Physics)