Saturday, June 26, 2010

The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency

Thoroughly enjoyable book! Mma Ramotswe's detective cases are used to reveal her life story and her own dreams and sorrows. I loved how the author, Alexander McCall Smith, truly does make this an African story as he exposes us to the cultures of several African nations.

I will look forward to getting to know Mma Precious Ramotswe better as I read other books in this series.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Reading Lolita in Tehran by Azar Nafisi

Reading Lolita in Tehran is the fascinating memoir of a woman professor who lived and taught in Tehran during the time of the revolution and Iran-Iraqi war. Wonderful insight into what life is like for a woman under radical Islamic leadership. I learned a lot about what was going on inside Iran during the time of the Ayatollah Khomeni. I consider this book a "must read"--especially for women who want to understand more about the plight of women in other cultures.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

The Plague by Albert Camus

Interesting, but strange. A clearly existential book in which the author seems to say that we really cannot control anything around us, so we just need to live with it. I understand that some feel it is actually a metaphorical work commenting on the response of various French people to the invasion of their country by the Germans in WWII.

I did appreciate the ending in which the main character, Dr. Rieux in reflecting upon the plague epidemic comes to the conclusion that there is more to admire than despise in people.

Doctor Zhivago by Boris Pasternak

I did not enjoy this book as much as I thought I would. I was mesmerized by the movie when I was younger and thought that the book would have the same effect. I often found myself having a hard time keeping track of who was who and found the ending so unsatisfying. Not the great romance novel I expected. Even the history of the Bolshevik Revolution was hard to follow. Disappointed.