Monday, July 05, 2004

recommended reading

Brad Whittington, who won the Christy this year for best first novel, recommended some titles to me to read during my time off in the comments of "sabbatical crap." Thanks, Brad.

Now, what do you all suggest? Is there a book that revamped you spiritually, creatively, humanly?

Would love to hear your suggestions.




Blogger Suzan Robertson said...

I recently finished: "The Assignment" by Mark Andrew Olsen. The story resembles "This Present Darkness" mixed in with a "Da Vinci Code" type of plot.I enjoyed the way it wove in history as seen from the protagonist's POV(his journal)Perhaps this book is not for everyone, but I enjoyed it, because of its complex plot. It challenged my thinking on many levels.

July 5, 2004 at 7:50 AM  
Blogger Bill Arnold said...

Well, for starters I don't think you've quite finished the Left Behind Series, young lady. Once you're through with that, we'll talk!

All kidding aside, I have no idea if you'd like it, but one of my favorite books is "The Last Samurai" by Helen DeWitt. It's about a linguist and her son, who is a prodigy. The novel takes its name from Kurosawa's film Seven Samurai and traces the boy's search for his father. Along the way, the book has a lot to say about art, education, language, and other topics.

July 5, 2004 at 10:47 AM  
Blogger Brad Whittington said...

Technical tip: Thanks for the link. However, I think you need to add "http://" to the front of it for it to work.

On reading: for the record, I recommended Chesterton's Father Brown stories because they are tight little puzzles usually built around a paradox and very entertaining. The other two I recommended because they are highly enjoyable writing of high caliber about almost nothing whatsoever. This is an unusual combination, since we are used to great writing being used in the service of something noble or serious. (At least I am.) To find great writing being used for the pure joy of it, with no subtext or agenda is refreshing.

I offered them in the spirit of the sabbatical as a zen-meditation-type suggestion to empty your mind of struggling over things of consequence and just enjoy something with no significance or redeeming social or spiritual content.

July 5, 2004 at 4:50 PM  
Blogger Jules Quincy Stephens said...

Um ...

We just finished My Name is Asher Lev over at Dave Long's blog, That was an interesting book.

But a book that revamped me in any way? *sigh* None off the top of my head. I'm reading a few books right now:

Seek my Face by John Updike

Ezekiel's Shadow by David Ryan Long

Keeping Faith by Jodi Picoult

I just finished Tuck Everlasting by Natalie Babbit. It's technically a YA book, but I just bought some children's classics for my daughter and decided to read it.

So, no profound epiphanies. Just keeping busy reading.

July 6, 2004 at 1:53 AM  
Blogger Becca said...

Check out C.S. Lewis' non-fiction. Titles I've read (well, the ones that come to mind immediately) are "Mere Christianity," "Surprised By Joy," and "The Four Loves." :)

July 6, 2004 at 10:54 AM  

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