your (sometimes) friendly neighborhood kymellin (kymellin) wrote in 50bookchallenge,
your (sometimes) friendly neighborhood kymellin

Books 15 & 16

#15: Pamela Sherer, Dolls: Portraits from the Golden Age, 137 pages, Art: Photography/Dolls, Hardback, 1992. With photographs by Tom Kelley.

This lovely oversized book showcases 70 doll photographs with short blurbs telling about the doll. It’s written for someone who is interested in vintage dolls (most dolls photographed come from the 19th and early 20th centuries), maybe to the point where they may collect some day. I learned about the making of bisque heads and about the earliest ball-jointed dolls. The photographs are what really make this an outstanding book – each doll is pictured in appropriate clothing and in realistic settings. Very beautiful and would work wonderfully as a coffee table book!

#16: Dan Brown, The Lost Symbol, 509 pages, Mystery, Hardback, 2009.

It’s hard to review a book that disappoints you in subtle ways. I enjoyed this tale of intrigue in Washington, D.C., delving into the secrets of the Masons. But when compared to Dan Brown’s prior works, the book was thin on the re-interpreted history, symbolism, architecture, and art that makes his Robert Langdon books such a treat. It seemed obvious that he did not feel comfortable with the landmarks of the capitol city and either did not know, or did not wish to reveal, much in the way of symbolism specific to the Masons. Instead, he dangles side plots of pseudo-science, basic mystic symbolism, and political machinations then does nothing of substance with them. Besides a really annoying “not really dead” moment or 3 and chapter breaks with every difference in viewpoint and location, I was put off by his final chapters about how all this shows the existence of God that felt oddly tacked on.
Tags: art, mystery

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