* You are viewing the archive for June, 2005

Kremlin Rising

I wouldn’t say that Kremlin Rising was extrordinarily rigorous or academic. It’s style, range, and focus on individuals made for a captivating (well researched and referenced) page turner more than a serious political tome. I enjoyed it and finished it in just a couple of days… probably not a good sign for serious students of Russian politics and culture. But for me, someone who reads world news in small, inconsistant bits, and has trouble remembering names and dates, it brought together those half-remembered elements and made a picture out of them. The recent Ukrainian election, … Continue Reading

Kremlin Rising

Not only do I have today off, but one major work event is over, and the next one hasn’t taken over my brain yet. I woke up relaxed, awake and able to read for the first time in the last couple of weeks, and have taken full advantage by jumping into Kremlin Rising with both feet. An interesting, incredibly readable portrait of Mr. Putin and a wide-ranging account of what the last several years have meant for Russia. So far it has managed to balance sympathy and interest in the stories of individuals with the exploration … Continue Reading

Tomie dePaola

Tomie dePaola is as lovely in person as one would think he’d be.


You know what else is remarkable about Ekaterina? (I hope no one needed a segue there) There’s a book-within-a-book in it that actually works. You get a feel for the novel Georgie Boy as if it were real. It stands up on it’s own, totally believable, without ever having passages “quoted”. It works. Maybe it helps NOT to quote fictional books. And then it worked beautifully as a way for the author character (Ekaterina) to talk about her life without talking about her life, blurring the real/unreal just a tiny bit more. A book … Continue Reading

John Prine

I bought my first John Prine cd after hearing “Space Monkey” in my local coffee shop. I’m buying my second after reading this post on Bookslut. If only for the song called “Your Flag Decal Won’t Get You Into Heaven Any More”.

Gambon as Falstaff

What an enormously good match.

what to read

I am without a book! That is to say, I don’t seem to be interested in any of my many books. I hate it when this happens. I could track down the last two Harington novels I haven’t read. I’m trying to read Bowling Alone but it keeps putting me to sleep. Even though I find it interesting. Even when I’m at work on my break. I’d like to go back to Ulysses and read it from the beginning properly… with attention and excitement. On a whim I picked up … Continue Reading