G (slickmc) wrote in 50bookchallenge,

Books 45-49 / 100

This has been quite the month of Star Trek: TNG, and so there hasn't been so much reading getting done.

45. Nicholas Nickleby - Charles Dickens

            About a young boy, very noble and young like most Dickens' heroes, trying to make a living, protect his noble and beautiful sister, and resist the dastardly deeds of his money-grubbing uncle. 
            At over 700 pages, it was quite long, and I felt that there were certain sections that did nothing really to further the plot and just seemed to be filler chapters.  Also, after reading a lot of Dickens, I knew what had to happen, i.e. certain people had to get married, the bad guys had to die or go to jail, the good guys had to have all their problems solved, and the sad-sacks had to die a sad but beautiful death, preferably from an illness.  But I thoroughly enjoyed it nonetheless and Nicholas is probably my favorite Dickens hero ever, except for maybe that dude in A Tale of Two Cities.

46. Dearly Devoted Dexter - Jeff Lindsey, narrated by Nick Landrum for Recorded Books
              The sequel to Darkly Dreaming Dexter.  Enjoyable, and as I thought, not much like the Second Season of the show, except for the focus on Dokes.  There are some very interesting developments with Rita's kids, which I didn't expect at all. 
               And that's about all I can say without giving stuff away.

47. End of the Earth: Voyages to Antarctica - Peter Matthiessen

          About, well, the title kind of says it all.  I've really been enjoying this author's books, which are about his travels, but they aren't like any sort of travel literature I've read before.  This guy is a naturalist and ornithologist, so interested in nature and environmentalism, frequently mentioning the human effects he notices and deplores.  He's also a poet, though, beautifully and enthusiastically describing the amazing things that he sees.  And then he's a seeker, a student of Zen Buddhism, so there's always that element of spirituality in his writings.
48. Children of Armenia: A Forgotten Genocide and the Century-Long Struggle for Justice - Michael Bobelian
        About what happened after the Armenian Genocide, from the immediate response of the United States, France, and England, sending millions in aid and trying to make reparations, to the censorship of the genocide by Turkey and United States'  complicity in order to maintain a friendship between the two countries during the cold war, through eventual Armenian activism and terrorism leading to a more recent recognition of the genocide.
        Not great writing, and most of the first few chapters is pretty general knowledge for anyone who knows anything about Armenia, but the rest of the book was informative enough.  I was most impressed by the success of Turkish censorship on this matter.  Kind of creepy that Turkey can influence which movies get made in my country.

49. The Teachings of Don Juan: A Yaqui Way of Knowledge - Carlos Castaneda

                  The author became an apprentice to a Yaqui sorcerer and learned about becoming a "man of knowledge" through the use hallucinogens.  Meh.  Didn't get much out of it.
Tags: anthropology, classic, fiction, history, non-fiction, spiritual reading

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