Thursday, November 18, 2010

Fact and Fiction

So far, I managed to finish three very long books, two today and one over the period of a few weeks. The non-fiction book is A Proper Education by Karl D. Coke, PhD. It's basically a call to return to a Hebraic centered model of education, rather than the Humanistic model currently in vogue. Again, it's America-centric, but what makes this book so good (to me), is that in dealing with such a touchy subject, it made all the right calls, unlike The Way Home.

While A Proper Education does have lot's of emotion sometimes, it manages to steer away from excessive emotion-based appeal (at least to me), and when quoting, the whole quote, plus context was given, which is a definite plus. And I think the best part of it, is that it managed to steer clear of politics, instead of demonising a particular party, it was neutral (except for the blame in Secular Humanists). Which made this book an enjoyable read, unlike The Way Home.

The book that I finally finished is The 13 1/2 Lives of Captain Bluebear: A novel by Walter Moers. While it sounds kiddy, it definitely is not, looking at the size of the book, it is very very very long. Eugenia and I are both reading it, and while it's possible to read it in one go, I decided that this time, I was going to read it slowly. As I remembered, it's really funny, very enjoyable; and to top it off, it got Eugenia to want to read. Even thought she gave up, she did restart, before giving up again (the book is really long).

The other book that I managed to finish is State of Fear by Michael Crichton, who apparently wrote Jurassic Park (which I never realised was a book). It's one of the books on the read-before-you-die booklist, and the fact is that my friends have incredible tastes in books. The book is about whether Global Warming is a real cause for threat or over-hyped by the media, and with so many detailed sources and footnotes, it provided food for thought. I guess this is the type of book we say "Art imitates life", and it shows how fiction can be used to approach controversial issues.

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