Thursday, October 30, 2008

Halloween Meme

You Should Be a Geisha for Halloween

According to our quiz, you'd make an ideal geisha.

Your runner up costume: Fairy

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Physics of the Impossible: A Scientific Exploration Into the World of Phasers, Force Fields, Teleportation, and Time Travel by Michio Kaku

In Physics of the Impossible, author Michio Kaku explores the fantastical world of science fiction and tells us exactly which of these “impossible” inventions are actually possible, at least according to our understanding of the current laws of physics. While most of these will not be seen in our lifetime, this intensely readable text makes it fun to imagine the possibilities that await future generations. Kaku does an outstanding job of making physics understandable and enjoyable, a remarkable feat for a science writer.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Free e-book Friday

Ok, not actually e-books, but if you like classical music the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra is offering 10 symphonies as free downloads. This will be available through November 24th.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Books & Books Meme

Name a book you have read MORE than once: Oryx and Crake by Margaret Atwood

Has a book ever fundamentally changed the way you see life? If yes, what was it? Every book changes the way I see life. I don't reacognize the effects but they all do.

How do you choose a book? By the pretty cover, the review, because I like the author, because a friend who has similar taste in books liked it, because it is assigned reading, because I am on a book award committee and must read or die...Take your pick.

Do you prefer Fiction or Non-Fiction? Depends on the subject. I tend to gravitate toward fiction but love anything to do with Victorian woman explorers, archeology, brain research....

What’s more important in a novel - beautiful writing or a gripping plot? The books that stay with me are the ones with "beautiful" writing or at least the most memorable descriptions.

Most loved/memorable character (character/book) I have always been fond of Amelia Peabody from the mystery series by Elizabeth Peters. The author has her PhD in Egyptology and has patterned her character after Amelia Edwards, Victorian Archeologist.

Which book or books can be found on your nightstand at the moment? Life and Death are Wearing Me Out: A Novel by Mo Yan

What was the last book you’ve read, and when was it? Physics of the Impossible: A Scientific Exploration into the World of Phasers, Force Fields, Teleportation, and Time Travel by Michio Kaku

Have you ever given up on a book half way in? Sure. Many. Reading is not a test or an endurance activity. Reading should be a joy.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Free E-Book Friday

For a limited time, read all of Wicked, the book that started it all, including the smash Broadway musical that is celebrating its 5th anniversary this month, online, for free!

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Kathleen Sibelius

Instead of watching the Vice-Presidential debates last Thursday, I went to Knuckleheads to listen to Tab Benoit. While we were there, one of my friends spotted Kathleen Sibelius in the crowd and shanghaied her for a picture.

Sunday, October 05, 2008

The Door by Margaret Atwood

I love Margaret Atwood. Two of her fiction novels are on my Favorite Books of All Time list. In fact, I have met her and stammered like an idiot while she signed my books. What a joy to discover that her poetry hits me the same way.

From "Owl and Pussycat, Some Years Later", a witty retelling of the well-known nursery rhyme, to the darker poem "The Hurt Child", Margaret Atwood revisits familiar themes and explores new territory in The Door. In this collection, she highlights the dark side of personal, environmental and political landscapes in taut, spare verse proving once again her virtuosity with words.

Variation on the Word Sleep
by Margaret Atwood

I would like to watch you sleeping,
which may not happen.
I would like to watch you,
sleeping. I would like to sleep
with you, to enter
your sleep as its smooth dark wave
slides over my head

and walk with you through that lucent
wavering forest of bluegreen leaves
with its watery sun & three moons
towards the cave where you must descend,
towards your worst fear

I would like to give you the silver
branch, the small white flower, the one
word that will protect you
from the grief at the center
of your dream, from the grief
at the center. I would like to follow
you up the long stairway
again & become
the boat that would row you back
carefully, a flame
in two cupped hands
to where your body lies
beside me, and you enter
it as easily as breathing in

I would like to be the air
that inhabits you for a moment
only. I would like to be that unnoticed
& that necessary.