All entries for April 2008

April 30, 2008

New Blog

I have a new blog over here:

which means I won't write anymore in this one.

April 23, 2008

The Book Thief

I just finished reading "The Book Thief" by Markus Zusak. I know that I said that I would cut down my reading time but that book made it so hard to put it down and do revision instead. I just couldn't stop before I was finished with it. This book definetely made into my all-time favourites. It's a story told by Death himself. He tells the story of a young german girl, Liesel, who is brought up by foster parents from the age of nine onwards because her mother and father were suspected communists which is not a good thing in Nazi Germany (the story takes place between 1939 and 1943). Her foster parents live in the outskirts of Munich in Himmelstraße. Throughout the book all inhabitants of that street are introduced and each and everyone of them play some more or less important part in Liesels life. Her foster parents, the Hubermanns, aren't members of the NSDAP (the Nazi party) and from 1940 onwards they hide a jew in their basement. Liesel befriends the young man and reads to him. The end is sad but not really sudden as the storyteller (Mr. Death) gives short glimpses at the end throughout his telling. This book is extremely sad what with the misery of the Jews at the hands of the fanatic Nazis, war, bombings and the always present Death. Zusaks way of writing is amazing. The chapters are short and interwoven with personal comments by Mr. Death himself. Though it seems and feels strange at the beginning to read these comments in the middle of a paragraph the story wouldn't be as captivating, charming and great without them. I guess it is quite obvious that I love this book. And really I do love it very much and recommend it. You have to read it!!!

My next book is "The Witch of Portobello" another Coelho. As well as "The Book Thief" it is not on the list, but I took the liberty to add "The Book Thief" because I believe that the only reason it's not on the list is that it was published only after the book with the list was published and hence could not make it on the list. However "The Book Thief" absolutely deserves to be on the list as it really is a book you should read before you die!

April 20, 2008

Reading done over Easter Holidays

Although I've been stuck to the head in revision over the holidays I still found some time to continue my reading. I first finished with "Tess of the D'urbervilles", then read "Frankenstein" and finally started another try at Tolstoys "Anna Karenina".

"Tess of the D'Urbervilles" took off rather slow and it took me a while to get used to the way of writing. I got really confused at the beginning and somehow missed an important point while reading because I was quite surprised when I read that Tess was pregnant though as I'd understood the story so far she didn't sleep with that jerk. However all in all it was a nice read though not really surprising apart from the end but I won't spoil that. Read it yourselves!

I've bought "Frankenstein" already a couple of years ago but have never found the time to read it. I was quite surprised to find out that not the monster is called Frankenstein but its creator. Otherwise the story had no real surprises either. I enjoyed reading it though. Probably because it had no happy end and for some twisted reason I like stories (and movies) that don't end with everybody being happy and in lala land. It's a tragic and sad story and it shows in an impressive way why men should not try to play god.

This is actually already my third try on "Anna Karenina". I started it first sometime during the summer of 2006, lost interest after app. 150 pages and started again one year later with another 50 something pages, just to lose interest again. This time I actually made some real progress and I'm just 40 pages short of finishing the first part. For those who don't know it: "Anna Karenina" is one real fat book with the story revolving around numerous characters of the Russian upper class. It mainly is about stuff like who marries whom, who has an affair etc. On top of it the book gives an insight to different theories about farming and politics of that time (end of 19th century). It is really hard to keep track who is connected to whom in what way. The complicated Russian names don't make it particularly easier and even the table of names at the beginning of the book doesn't really help. I'm pretty sure that it will take me ages to finsih that book especially with regard to the fact that I already found another far more intriguing book: "The Book Thief" by Markus Zusak. It's not on the list but I've read several reviews of it and it sounded really promising. I've read like 50 pages so far and I'm already captured by the story and the way it is told. But what with my final exams lurking in the near future I might to have cut down my reading-for-pleasure-time.

April 2008

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