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Package: python-dumbo version: 0.21.34-1~ubuntu12.04.1~ppa1 architecture: all description: dumbo strives to be as pythonic as possible √É¬Ę√ā‚ā¨√ā‚Äú mapreduce programs that use it are easy on the eyes for people who read them and easy on the fingers for those who write them. dumbo also provides More than enough boilerplate functionality and additional features to give (directly) using hadoop streaming a run for its money. you'll never again even think of writing a job consisting of multiple mapreduce iterations using traditional streaming Once you've done it with dumbo for instance. you can install this packages from repository: ppa:hadoop-ubuntu/dev.
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Author: terry goodkind book title: stone of tears publisher: tor books year: 1996 isbn: 0812548094 in wizard‚Äôs first rule, richard cypher‚Äôs world was turned upside down. Once a simple woods guide, richard was forced to become the seeker of truth, to save the world from the vile dominance of darken rahl, the most viciously savage and powerful wizard the world had ever seen. he was joined on this epic quest by his beloved kahlan, the only survivor among the confessors, who brought a powerful but benevolent justice to the land before rahl‚Äôs evil scourge. aided by zedd, the last of the wizards who opposed rahl, they were able to cast him into the underworld, saving the world from the living hell of life under rahl. but the veil to the underworld has been torn, and rahl, from beyond the veil, begins to summon a sinister power More dreadful than any he has wielded before. horrifying creatures escape through the torn veil, wreaking havoc on the unsuspecting world above. if rahl isn‚Äôt stopped, he will free the keeper itself, an evil entity whose power is so vast and foul that Once freed, it can Never Again be contained..
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Author: –≠–Ľ–Ķ–Ļ–Ĺ –ö–į–Ĺ–Ĺ–ł–Ĺ–≥–Ķ–ľ book title: the wizardwar publisher: wizards of the coast year: 2002 isbn: 0-7869-2704-6 defeat breeds anger. hatred breeds revenge. Once Again, the counselors of halruaa have beaten back an attack by the wizard akhlaur. Once More, the kingdom has been saved from its enemies. but victory comes at a terrible price. the aged king is weakened, his powers diminished. his chief counselor matteo is torn between his duty and his heart. tzigone, the hero of the battle of akhlaur's swamp, has been hurled into a dark world from which she may Never escape. and at the edge of time, akhlaur and his ally, the magehound, plot their final revenge..
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Author: dean koontz book title: forever odd every so often a character so captures the hearts and imaginations of readers that he seems to take on a life of his own long after the final page is turned. for such a character, one book is not enough-readers must know what happens next. now dean koontz returns with the novel his fans have been demanding. with the emotional power and sheer storytelling artistry that are his trademarks, koontz takes up Once More the story of a unique young hero and an eccentric little town in a tale that is equal parts suspense and terror, adventure and mystery-and altogether irresistibly odd. we're all a little odd beneath the surface. he's the most unlikely hero you'll ever meet-an ordinary guy with a modest job you might Never look at twice. but there's so much More to any of us than meets the eye-and that goes triple for odd thomas. for odd lives always between two worlds in the small desert town of pico mundo, where the heroic and the harrowing are everyday events. odd Never asked to communicate with the dead-it's something that just happened. but as the unofficial goodwill ambassador between our world and theirs, he's got a duty to do the right thing. that's the way odd sees it and that's why he's won hearts on both sides of the divide between life and death. a childhood friend of odd's has disappeared. the worst is feared. but as odd applies his unique talents to the task of finding the missing person, he discovers something worse than a dead body, encounters an enemy of exceptional cunning, and spirals into a vortex of terror. Once Again odd will stand against our worst fears. around him will gather new allies and old, some living and some not. for in the battle to come, there can be no innocent bystanders, and every sacrifice can tip the balance between despair and hope. whether you're meeting odd thomas for the first time or he's already an old friend, you'll be led on an unforgettable journey through a world of terror, wonder and delight-to a revelation that can change your life. and you can have no better guide than odd thomas..
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Year: 2001 comment: lyrics **************************** somebody told me that i'd always have to bow if that was true we would've fallen apart by now the More you think the less you hand away so can you hear this its the fake sound of progress...... never reason with a fool but is that unkind looks like i've lost my mind Once again i know it all sounds so contrived but it's got to me you know i've got to be More than this dont fret dont scorn cos i walk a different street to you you l.
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Author: colm t√É¬≥ib√É¬≠n book title: the master it's a bold writer indeed who dares to put himself inside the mind of novelist henry james, but that is what t√É¬≥ib√É¬≠n, highly talented irish author of the heather blazing and the blackwater lightship, has ventured here, with a remarkable degree of success. the book is a fictionalized study, based on many biographical materials and family accounts, of the novelist's interior life from the moment in london in 1895 when james's hope to succeed in the theater rather than on the printed page was eclipsed by the towering success of his younger contemporary oscar wilde. thereafter the book ranges seamlessly back and forth over james's life, from his memories of his prominent brahmin family in the states-including the suicide of his father and the tragic early death of his troubled sister alice-to his settling in england, in a cherished house of his own choosing in rye. along the way it offers hints, no More, of james's troubled sexual identity, including his fascination with a young english manservant, his (apparently platonic) night in bed with oliver wendell holmes and his curious obsession with a dashing scandinavian sculptor of little talent but huge charisma. another recurrent motif is james's absorption in the lives of spirited, highly intelligent but unhappy young women who die prematurely, which helped to inform some of his strongest fiction. the subtlety and empathy with which t√É¬≥ib√É¬≠n inhabits james's psyche and captures the fleeting emotional nuances of his world are beyond praise, and even the echoes of the master's style ring true. far More than a stunt, this is a riveting, if inevitably somewhat evasive, portrait of the creative life. from the washington post say, with due reverence, "the master" and any serious novel-reader instantly knows you are referring to henry james (1843-1916). no one else in american or english literature comes close to matching james in his austere dedication to the writer's life. from the time of his first story √Ę‚ā¨‚Äú about adultery, published in 1865 √Ę‚ā¨‚Äú he elected to follow a path of essential loneliness. james mingled with society, dined with the great and the good on two continents, and listened and observed with guarded intensity. he made himself into the most sensitive possible register of social nuance, unspoken yearnings, hidden liaisons. but he remained apart from the fray, looking on the tumultuous, sorrowful human comedy with a pity tempered by compassionate understanding for our failings, sins and wounding misjudgments. tout comprendre, c'est tout pardonner might almost be james's artistic motto. all his own joys were, to the eyes of the world, muted, perhaps nonexistent. in one of his novels a character proclaims: "live life. live all you can. it's a mistake not to," and yet the master himself seems Never to have heeded this liberating affirmation and instead funneled all his animal vitality into the making of such masterpieces as the portrait of a lady, "the turn of the screw," "the aspern papers," the ambassadors, and that greatest of all accounts of a missed life, "the beast in the jungle." colm toibin alludes to each of these novels, novellas and stories (and several others) in this moving portrait of the artist in late middle age. here the irish novelist √Ę‚ā¨‚Äú hitherto best known for the blackwater lightship, which was short-listed for the booker prize √Ę‚ā¨‚Äú builds on the research and speculations of numerous scholars to construct a novel about james's interior life. this requires the utmost delicacy. in one sense, the master might almost be viewed as an extreme example of what the french call the vie romanc√É¬©e, a highly embellished form of biography that goes beyond austere scholarship to adopt the exuberance and methods of fiction. henri troyat's tolstoy, for instance, was faulted for being too exciting, too artful, too much like a tolstoy novel. similar charges have been leveled at the work of peter ackroyd on dickens and edmund morris on ronald reagan. readers tend to grow uneasy when they start to wonder where the facts stop and the artistic license begins. but toibin's impersonation of james works beautifully. the prose is appropriately grave and wistful, the sentences stately without being ponderous, the descriptions at Once precise and evocative. the action, such as it is, moves smoothly from a time of temporary desolation to memories of horrible physical and mental suffering to angst-filled comedy (james dithering about how to deal with two drunken servants, james uncertain about how to dispose of the dresses of a dead woman). toibin focuses on his subject in the years between 1895, when james's play "guy domville" was hooted on its opening night, and 1899, when his elder brother william came to visit at lamb house, his beloved residence in rye. but in between toibin recreates scenes from james's childhood, offers a subtle interpretation of the apparent back injury √Ę‚ā¨‚Äú the so-called great "vastation" √Ę‚ā¨‚Äú that kept him out of the civil war and helped make him an artist, and systematically introduces many of the people important in the writer's life. most of these are women: his protective mother; his bitterly witty invalid sister alice; the life-enhancing minny temple, adored by all the young men at harvard, including oliver wendell holmes jr., and √Ę‚ā¨‚Äú most heartbreaking of all √Ę‚ā¨‚Äú the novelist constance fenimore woolson, who quietly fell in love with james and then killed herself when it seemed he had abandoned her. all these figure as agents who help him determine his artistic destiny or as temptations to relinquish it for a More human existence. toibin does suggest that james's fundamental nature was homosexual, if largely unexpressed: he is notably fine in evoking the erotic tension between the novelist and a servant named hammond (presumably fictional) and the "bewitched confusion" james feels for the sculptor hendrik andersen, portrayed here as muscular, ambitious, rather stupid and blindly selfish. one Never knows where love will strike. toibin's masterly prose excels particularly in an easy-going command of the style indirect libre, which conveys a character's mental processes in the third person: "he wished that he was halfway through a book, with no need to finish until the spring when serialization would begin. he wished he could work quietly in his study with the haunting gray morning light of the london winter filtered through the windows. he wished for solitude and for the comfort of knowing that his life depended not on the multitude but on remaining himself." james himself specialized in this technique √Ę‚ā¨‚Äú he preferred to avoid dialogue as much as possible √Ę‚ā¨‚Äú because it allowed for the gradual unspooling of a thought, the patient dissection of an emotion or a motive. in the master, toibin uses it not only to enter james's mind but also as a means of giving us his reflections on his vocation. though a novel, the master is almost a breviary of the religion of art. consider these three different, but equally striking, passages: "once it became More solid, the emerging story and all its ramifications and possibilities lifted him out of the gloom of his failure. he grew determined that he would become More hardworking now. he took up his pen Again √Ę‚ā¨‚Äú the pen of all his unforgettable efforts and sacred struggles. it was now, he believed, that he would do the work of his life. he was ready to begin Again, to return to the old high art of fiction with ambitions now too deep and pure for any utterance." "and in one of those letters [to john gray] she had written the words which√Ę‚ā¨¬¶ henry thought now maybe meant More to him than any others, including all the words he had written himself, or anyone else had written. her words haunted him so that saying them now, whispering them in the silence of the night brought her exacting presence close to him. the words constituted one sentence. minny had written: 'you must tell me something that you are sure is true.' that, he thought, was what she wanted when she was alive and happy, as much as when she was dying√Ę‚ā¨¬¶ the words came to him in her sweet voice, and as he sat on his terrace in the darkness he wondered how he would have answered her if she had written the sentence to him." "as an artist, he recognized, andersen might know, or at least fathom the possibility, that each book he had written, each scene described or character created, had become an aspect of him, had entered into his driven spirit and lay there much as the years themselves had done. his relationship with constance would be hard to explain; andersen was perhaps too young to know how memory and regret can mingle, how much sorrow can be held within, and how nothing seems to have any shape or meaning until it is well past and lost and, even then, how much, under the weight of pure determination, can be forgotten and left aside only to return in the night as piercing pain." there are many other wise, if often rather doleful, observations in the master, for the book seeks, in part, to show how a novelist transmutes his own experiences into something rich and strange and true: so, minny temple and alice james are reimagined, in part, as isabel archer or daisy miller. sometimes one feels a little too strongly that toibin is plumping down the "real" events and figures behind the better known fictive ones. sometimes it seems that he veers close to the besetting fault of so much historical fiction, that of having the hero mention or meet virtually every famous figure of the time. for instance, in the final pages of the book, in a single conversation, he presents william james outlining the lectures that will become the varieties of religious experience, henry james describing his current projects √Ę‚ā¨‚Äú clearly "the beast in the jungle" and the ambassadors √Ę‚ā¨‚Äú and their visitor edmund gosse announcing that he's been mulling over a book about his childhood, one that will obviously become the only thing people still read by him, the wonderful father and son. excessive? perhaps. but such great works are the final justification for lives spent thinking and writing about the nature of human experience. the master is hardly a typical summer book, but it is convincing and enthralling. those of an investigative bent might read it with an occasional glance through some of the biographical scholarship that toibin cites in his acknowledgments. others, new to james, might go on to look at the master's actual work, starting perhaps with john auchard's recently revised portable henry james (penguin), an exceptional work of selection and distillation. but you don't need to do either of these. colm toibin has written a superb novel about a great artist, and done it in just the right way. it is worth reading just for itself √Ę‚ā¨‚Äú and for insights like this one: at harvard, we are told, the young henry james suddenly understood "the idea of style itself, of thinking as a kind of style, and the writing of essays not as a conclusive call to duty or an earnest effort at self-location, but as play, as the wielding of tone." that is something i am sure is true. copyright 2004, the washington post co. all rights reserved..
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Author: greg rucka book title: walking dead in this explosive new thriller, greg rucka, the acclaimed author of shooting at midnight and patriot acts, sets bodyguard-turned-international-fugitive atticus kodiak on a one-man crusade where being willing to die for your ideals isn't enough. you have to be willing to do much worse‚Ä¶ i will take your place in times of danger. as an ex-bodyguard, atticus kodiak knew the sentiment well. he'd Once based his career on it. now it could cost him More than just his livelihood ‚Äď More than even his life. for as he wakes to the sound of gunfire, the nightmare is about to begin Again. atticus knew very well that people came to a place like kobuleti to hide. after all, that's why he and alena cizkova had come to the secluded georgian town in the former u.s.s.r. but atticus Never asked his friend and neighbor bakhar lagidze why he was in kobuleti or what he might be hiding from. now it's too late. bakhar and his family have been brutally murdered, and the thuggish local police chief has declared it a murder-suicide. everyone ‚Äď even alena ‚Äď seems satisfied to leave it at that. except for atticus. he knows what the police won't acknowledge: that one person survived the bloodbath in the lagidze household ‚Äď their fourteen-year-old daughter. and the nightmare she's about to experience will make her wish she'd died with the rest. to rescue her atticus must enter a web that takes him from russia to istanbul, that stretches from dubai to las vegas. but what troubles atticus the most is that alena ‚Äď Once one of the world's most dangerous assassins and a woman who fears nothing ‚Äď is clearly terrified of what he's uncovered. and as atticus gets closer to learning why, the closer he gets to destroying the life they have made, and each other..
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Author: sherrilyn kenyon book title: dark side of the moon year: 2006 susan michaels was Once the hottest reporter on the beltway beat until a major scandal ruined her life and left her writing stories about alien babies and elvis sightings. life as she Once knew it is over, or so she thinks, but then she gets a lead on a story that could salvage her extinct career. she heads to the local animal shelter, expecting a hot news tip, which she gets in the form of a major police cover-up‚Ä¶ for a ring of soul-sucking vampires out to take over seattle. so much for saving her credibility. and if that isn't bad enough, she gets talked into adopting a cat and finds she's allergic to it. a cat that turns out to be a shapeshifter who claims to be an immortal vampire slayer on the prowl for the same corrupt cops. her first thought: seek professional help. but as susan's drawn into ravyn's dark and dangerous world, she comes to realize that there's a lot More at stake than just her defunct career. now it's no longer a question of bringing the truth to her readers; it's a matter of saving their very lives and souls. ravyn's life was shattered over four hundred years ago, when he mistakenly trusted the wrong human with the truth of his existence. he lost his family, his honor, and his life. now, in order to save the people of seattle, he's forced to confront that nightmare all over Again, and to trust another woman with the secret that could destroy him. in the world of the dark-hunters, life is always dangerous. but Never More so than now, when a very human woman can shatter their entire world with just one story. the only question is‚Ä¶ will she?.
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Author: shirley murphy book title: cat seeing double multiple-award-winning author shirley rousseau murphy Once Again brings us joe grey and dulcie, the most cunning set of feline sleuths ever to stick their paws into crime solving. always a loner, charlie getz Never expected to fall in love with anyone, let alone the chief of police of molena point, california. so her wedding on a perfect, sunny day is all the More joyous ‚Äď especially when two of the honored guests are four-footed pals, feline detectives joe grey and dulcie. however, two unexpected visitors ‚Äď a young boy and an old man hidden in the shadows ‚Äď are preparing to bomb the soon-to-be-filledlied church. the lone witness, a small tattercoat kit crouched beneath the oak branches, warns joe's owner, clyde; then, with claws and teeth, she stops the two would-be murderers. but the shock of the near disaster that might have killed half the village is only the beginning. the next morning charlie's good friend, building contractor ryan flannery, awakens to find her estranged, philandering husband dead in her garage‚Ä¶ and her own gun is missing. with suspicion falling squarely on ryan's shoulders, joe grey, dulcie, and kit use their skills of break-and-enter to prove her innocence. but a stranger's sinister push into her life is as unexpected as the arrival, on the morning of the murder, of a handsome purebred hunting dog, a homeless stray who seems determined to move in with ryan. whatever hateful force has descended on the small seaside village, the three cats are soon paw-deep in a tangle of jealousy, greed, and carefully planned retribution. so they work the case as only cats can, passing information anonymously to the cops, making a heroic feline effort to nail the killer and catch the wedding bomber, and hoping to see the silver hunting dog settled safely into his new home..
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Author: anthony burgess book title: a clockwork orange (uk version) in anthony burgess‚Äôs a clockwork orange, burgess creates a gloomy future full of violence, rape and destruction. in this dystopian novel, burgess does a fantastic job of constantly changing the readers‚Äô allegiance toward the books narrator and main character, alex. writing in a foreign language, burgess makes the reader feel like an outsider. as the novel begins, the reader has no emotional connection to alex. this non-emotional state comes to a sudden halt when alex and his droogs begin a series of merciless acts of violence. the reader rapidly begins to form what seems to be an irreversible hatred toward the books narrator. however, as time progresses, burgess cleverly changes the tone of his novel. Once wishing only the harshest punishments be bestowed upon him, it is these same punishments that begin to change how the reader feels. in fact, by the end of the book, one almost begins to have pity for alex. the same character that was Once hated soon emerges as one of many victims taken throughout the course of the book. throughout alex‚Äôs narration, burgess manages to change the readers‚Äô allegiance toward a Once seemingly evil character. alex is the type of character one loves to hate; he makes it all too easy to dislike him. he is a brutal, violent, teenage criminal with no place in society. his one and only role is to create chaos, which he does too well. alex‚Äôs violent nature is first witnessed during the first chapter, and is soon seen Again when alex and his gang chose to brutally beat an innocent drunkard. this beating off the homeless man serves no purpose other then to amuse alex‚Äôs gang. the acts committed were not performed for revenge, the one reason given was that alex did not enjoy seeing a homeless drunk, ‚Äúi could Never stand to see a moodge all filthy and rolling and burping and drunk, whatever his age might be, but More especially when he was real starry like this one was‚ÄĚ. alex continues to explain his reason for dislike, ‚Äúhis platties were a disgrace, all creased and untidy and covered in cal‚ÄĚ, from this explanation one realizes his reasons for nearly killing a man are simply based on pleasure, desire, and a dislike toward the untidy. by the end of the second chapter burgess‚Äôs inventive usage of a different language to keep the reader alienated from forming opinions about alex ceases to work. at this point in time alex‚Äôs true nature is revealed, and not even his unfamiliar nadsat language can save him from being strongly disliked by the reader. the More the reader learns of alex, the More and More he is disliked; alex‚Äôs relationship with his parents only builds on ones already negative opinions toward alex. coming from a normal family and a sturdy household free of domestic violence, there is no excuse for alex‚Äôs violent nature. in fact, alex‚Äôs loving parents are just as baffled by his immoral personality as the reader, although because of their naivete, they know much less of what he does. this leaves the reader uninformed and wondering: why is alex the way he is? fortunately, just as one begins to question alex‚Äôs motives, alex gives an answer, ‚Äúbadness is of the self, the one‚Ä¶is not our modern history, my brothers the story of brave malenky selves fighting these big machines? i am serious with you, brothers, over this. but what i do i do because i like to do‚ÄĚ. he could not have explained it More clearly. while from one point of view alex visions himself as a revolutionary, even simpler then that, he is basically admitting he commits violent acts because he enjoys doing so. later in the book alex offers another solution for his violent nature, ‚Äúbeing young is like being one of these malenky machines‚Ä¶and so it would itty on to like the end of the world‚ÄĚ. these malenky machines he is referring to are very similar to the clockwork orange burgess talks to in his introduction. whatever reasons he gives, none of them are valid enough to prevent the reader from hating alex. in spite of all the hatred aimed toward alex at this point, seemingly it is not enough to prevent the pity one begins to feel when alex is abandoned by his ‚Äúdroogs‚ÄĚ. knowing he is the leader of his group, alex constantly gives orders to his gang. unfortunately it is due to his tendency to need leadership that a quarrel begins with his gang. after settling the original dispute that arises, alex and his ‚Äúdroogs‚ÄĚ are not so successful at ending their second squabble. framed by his friends, alex is arrested while they run away. furthermore, he is beaten by the police, and sentenced to fourteen years of jail. it only takes two of them for the reader to realize the difficulties that alex is living through. throughout the first part of the book, there is in fact only one sign that alex is not utterly evil, that being his music. along with his abandonment from friends, it is the music that burgess uses to help change the readers opinion, and eventually to have pity toward his young antagonist. as the reader continues to pry deeper into alex‚Äôs life it is shocking to learn of the music he listens to, it is because of this music and the actions taken against him that one truly begins to feel sorry for burgess‚Äôs little alex. the music that alex chooses to listen is very ironic. while it causes him to do evil things, the fact remains that he listens to normal music, one of the first things he is not disliked for, ‚Äúlying there on my bed with glazzies tight shut and rookers behind my gulliver, i broke and spattered and cried aaaaaaah with the bliss of it". his particular interest in ludwig van arises during one of his sessions while undergoing ludivico‚Äôs technique. upon hearing what he perceives to be heavenly music alex cry‚Äôs out about the injustice in the procedure, ‚Äúi don‚Äôt mind about the ultra-violence and all that cal. i can put up with that. but it‚Äôs not fair on the music‚ÄĚ. it is during this same treatment that the reader really begins to feel sympathy toward him. striped of his ability to choose right from wrong, and now the same clockwork orange that f. alexander earlier told him about, alex becomes one of the governments‚Äô machines. forced to do exactly what they want him to, become their ‚Äútrue christian‚ÄĚ, alex poses the question to his doctors, ‚Äúhow about me? where do i come into all this? am i like just some animal or dog‚Ä¶am i to be just like a clockwork orange?‚ÄĚ alex is all alone in the world, no longer capable of performing cruel deeds, he is denied by all whom he Once knew. the same character one used to wish the harshest punishment upon received it, and when he got it, it becomes strikingly evident that it was much More then even the worst person would ever deserve. burgess does a magical job at making the reader quickly forget the horrible deeds alex Once committed. instead by making powerful moral statements, burgess goes so far that the reader not only turns the other cheek toward alex‚Äôs crimes, but also feels genuinely sorry for him. alex may not be completely cured, but that is not the issue at hand. through means of pity and by playing with the readers‚Äô emotions throughout the book, during a clockwork orange, burgess is constantly playing with the reader‚Äôs allegiances..
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Author: jonathan kellerman book title: rage in a host of consecutive bestsellers, jonathan kellerman has kept readers spellbound with the intense, psychologically acute adventures of dr. alex delaware-and with excursions through the raw underside of l.a. and the coldest alleys of the criminal mind. rage offers a powerful new case in point, as delaware and lapd homicide detective milo sturgis revisit a horrifying crime from the past that has taken on shocking and deadly new dimensions. troy turner and rand duchay were barely teenagers when they kidnapped and murdered a younger child. troy, a remorseless sociopath, died violently behind bars. but the hulking, slow-witted rand managed to survive his stretch. now, at age twenty-one, he's emerged a haunted, rootless young man with a pressing need: to talk-Once Again-with psychologist alex delaware. but the young killer comes to a brutal end, that conversation Never takes place. has karma caught up with rand? or has someone waited for eight patient years to dine on ice-cold revenge? both seem strong possibilities to sturgis, but delaware's suspicions run deeper‚Ä¶ and darker. because fear in the voice of the grownup rand duchay-and his eerie final words to alex: "i'm not a bad person"-betray untold secrets. buried revelations so horrendous, and so damning, they're worth killing for. as delaware and sturgis retrace their steps through a grisly murder case that devastated a community, they discover a chilling legacy of madness, suicide, and multiple killings left in its wake-and even uglier truths waiting to be unearthed. and the nearer they come to understanding an unspeakable crime, the More harrowingly close they get to unmasking a monster hiding in plain sight. rage finds jonathan kellerman in phenomenal form-orchestrating a relentlessly suspenseful, devilishly unpredictable plot to a finale as stunning and thought-provoking as it is satisfying..
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Author: joseph heller book title: closing time in joseph heller's two best novels, catch 22 and something happened, the narrative circles obsessively around a repressed memory that it is the stories' business finally to confront. we feel the tremors of its eventual eruption in each book even as the narrator frantically distracts us with slapstick improvisation. in his newest novel, closing time, heller brings back the (anti-) hero of catch 22, john yossarian, and Once Again something horrific is building beneath his life and those of his generation and their century as they all draw to a close. but this time it is not a brute fact lodged in memory, the something that draws its power simply from having happened. it is instead something that is going to happen-we're going to die-and it draws its power from-well-how we feel about that. the problem is that we may not all feel the same way about our approaching death, as we cannot fail to do about howie snowden bleeding to death on the floor of the bomber in catch 22. we cannot really imagine our death. on the other hand, try as we might, we cannot help imagining snowden. it comes down to a question of authority, the authority of an author's claim on our imagination. there is less of it in closing time. it reaches for such authority by reading into the passing of the world war ii generation a paranoid apocalypse in the manner of thomas pynchon and don delillo. yossarian's life goes into and out of a kind of virtual reality involving a dantesque underworld entered through the false back of a basement tool locker in the new york port authority bus terminal. beneath this underworld runs an underground railroad meant to provide indefinite protection for the elite of the military/industrial/political complex chosen by triage to survive the coming nuclear holocaust. as catalyst for that holocaust we are given a mentally challenged president known to us only by his affectionate nickname, the little prick, who is enthralled by the video games that fill a room just off the oval office, especially the game called triage which enables him eventually to trip the wire on the conclusive big bang. heller's underworld has some fetching attributes. it is managed by george c. tilyou, the coney island entrepreneur who ran the steeplechase amusement park before world war 1. tilyou died before any of the novel's protagonists was born, but the remembered stories about him and his slowly sinking house with the family name on the front step qualify him as a jolly major domo of hell, a man whose love for his fellows sincerely expressed itself in fleecing them. now, below the sub-sub-basement of the bus terminal, he rejoices in having taken it with him, for his house and eventually his whole amusement park sank down around him. rockefeller and morgan come by and panhandle miserably for his wealth, having learned too late that their More conventional philanthropy could not sanctify their plunder or secure their grasp on it. other aspects of heller's grand scheme are less successful. two characters from catch 22, milo minderbinder and ex-pfc. wintergreen, are strawmen representatives of the military-industrial complex, peddling a nonexistent clone of the stealth bomber to a succession of big-brass boobies with names like colonel pickering and major bowes. much of this is the sort of thing that killed vaudeville and is now killing "saturday night live." against these gathering forces of death, yossarian asserts his allegiance to life in a way that is by now a reflex of the norman mailer generation: he has an affair with and impregnates a younger woman, a nurse whom he meets in a hospitalization of doubtful purpose at the opening of the novel. thank heavens, i thought as i read, that i belong to the only sex capable of such late and surprising assertions. but, as the euphoria ebbed, i had to admit that yossarian's amatory exertions were More than faintly repulsive. so the novel is disappointing where it hurts the most, in its central organizing idea. why, after all, does yossarian's generation get to take the whole world down with it? well, it doesn't, really, and yet the veterans of world war ii do have a special claim on us as they pass from our sight. this claim is More convincingly urged by the long first-person narratives of two characters who, we learn, moved invisibly on the periphery of events in catch-22. lew rabinowitz and sammy singer are non-neurotics whose stories reveal their limitations and, at the same time, allow us to see around and beyond them. this is harder to do with normal people, and heller brings it off beautifully. rabinowitz is an aggressive giant, the son of a coney island junk dealer, an instinctively successful businessman who lacked the patience for the college education offered him by the g.i. bill, and who Never comprehended as we do his own delicacy of feeling. singer, a writer of promotional and ad copy for times, is, by his own account, a bit of a pedant given to correcting rabinowitz's grammar. heller sometimes allows singer's prose style to stiffen in a way that is entirely in character and that gives an unexpected dignity and pathos to passages like those that describe his wife's last illness. rabinowitz and singer basically get More respect from their author than yossarian and the characters who figure in his story. the two new characters tell us stories embued with an unforced humor and with the sort of gravity that attends good people as they come to terms with their mortality. and this goes for their wives as well, for both men make good and entirely credible marriages that last a lifetime. yossarian should have been so lucky..
Heller - Closing Time.fb2
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Author: virginia woolf book title: to the lighthouse introduction one does not have to read very much of to the lighthouse before one realizes that woolf has chosen here a very particular style, a way of telling the story which exerts a strange and compelling effect upon the reader. in this lecture i wish to focus upon some aspects of this style in order to consider some of the ways in which a few very important aspects of what this novel has to reveal are directly linked to the author's decisions about point of view and language. one of my major purposes in this lecture is to offer some suggestions about why we might consider woolf a major modernist writer and link her to other modernist artists we have been considering in liberal studies, even to those who, at first glance perhaps, don't seem to share quite the same style: kafka, eliot, and certain modern painters. i shall be trying to establish as my major point the idea that what does link woolf to these other modernists is the way in which her style compels us to recognize a fundamental problem of modern life: the deep and apparently unbridgeable dichotomy between the fragmented inner world of the self and any sense of coherent order to the world beyond the self, that is, the world of human relationships, of nature, of society as a totality. the power of style: an example however, before moving to such large concerns, i would like to consider a particular example, selected almost at random, from an early part of the book. this particular example is part of a description of mrs ramsay; it occurs on p. 15 of our edition: all she could do now was to admire the refrigerator, and turn the pages of the stores list in the hope that she might come upon something like a rake, or a mowing machine, which, with its prongs and its handles, would need the greatest skill and care in cutting out. all these young men parodied her husband, she reflected; he said it would rain; they said it would be a positive tornado. but here, as she turned the page, suddenly her search for the picture of a rake or a mowing-machine was interrupted. the gruff murmur, irregularly broken by the taking out of pipes and the putting in of pipes which had kept on assuring her, though she could not hear what was said (as she sat in the window which opened on the terrace), that the men were happily talking; this sound, which had lasted now half an hour and had taken its place soothingly in the scale of sounds pressing on top of her, such as the tap of balls upon bats, the sharp, sudden bark now and then, "how's that? how's that?" of the children playing cricket, had ceased; so that the monotonous fall of the waves on the beach, which for the most part beat a measured and soothing tattoo to her thoughts and seemed consolingly to repeat over and over Again as she sat with the children the words of some old cradle song, murmured by nature, "i am guarding you-i am your support," but at other times suddenly and unexpectedly, especially when her mind raised itself slightly from the task actually in hand, had no such kindly meaning, but like a ghostly roll of drums remorselessly beat the measure of life, made one think of the destruction of the island and its engulfment in the sea, and warned her whose day had slipped past in one quick doing after another that it was all ephemeral as a rainbow-this sound which had been obscured and concealed under the other sounds suddenly thundered hollow in her ears and made her look up with an impulse of terror. the first thing we notice about this style, i suspect, is the extraordinary sentence structure. the second paragraph contains a sentence of 260 words, a sentence which, in effect, is a single complex sentence of 32 words enormously embellished by parenthetical phrases and clauses, modifying phrases, and a whole rich array of various grammatical constructions. these hold up the full meaning of the sentence and transform it from something clear and straightforward into something delayed, qualified, uncertain, and (for the reader) much More difficult to assimilate. if we examine closely the structure of that long sentence, we see that the main clause begins with an indication of the subject (the gruff murmur) but that any further development of that clause is held up for nine lines, so that we get a range of associations and modifying phrases describing that murmur. thus, by the time we get to the main verb (had ceased) we have gone through a range of emotional associations connected to the initial subject. the meanings of the words and, most important, the rhythm of the sentence establish the extent to which mrs ramsay's mood is dependent upon the semi-conscious absorption of what is going on around her. she cannot hear what people are saying, but the very presence of the regular activity provides for her a comforting reassurance of domestic order. thus, the structure of the sentence itself presents the central issue of mrs ramsay's character, that she is constantly dependent upon the existence of family rituals all around her, that, although she may not participate directly in them or even be fully aware of what is going on, she relies upon such a background sense of ongoing domestic order to sustain her tranquil mood. the strongest word in the entire sentence is the final word terror. it injects into what has seemed a slow meandering through a number of quotidian details a sudden emotional urgency. we can ask ourselves an obvious question: why does woolf not simply present the main clauses and thus deliver the full thought much More simply? after all, isn't the main point here that mrs ramsay's mood changes suddenly in an unwelcome way? it's clear, of course, what would be lost immediately, namely, the sense that the subject (mrs ramsay) is not, any More than anyone else is, capable of such a firm declarative thought process. what goes on in her mind, from one moment to the next, is something much More complex than any such simple declaration would illustrate. More about this later. we notice, too, how almost all the details of this style focus our attention upon what is going on in mrs ramsay's mind. we do learn some external details about what she is doing and where she is sitting, but these details are clearly subordinated to the most obvious content of the sentences: the details passing through mrs ramsay's consciousness as she sits and stares at a magazine, half-listening to the children playing and the men talking nearby. in other words, there's an interplay here between the external world and mrs ramsay's inner consciousness of that world, but the emphasis is very much on the latter rather than on the former. that is clear from the fact that, although we have a very clear idea of what mrs ramsay is feeling, we have no exact idea of her position, so exact that we could paint the scene with More or less the same shared details. such a style, in other words, forces us to recognize the preeminence of the inner life in the ongoing drama of a human existence. many readers comment that this style is wonderful because that's how people in fact think. but of course this is nonsense. no one thinks in such superbly polished prose, taking care, clause by clause or phrase by phrase, that all the antecedents are appropriately positioned and the modifiers clear. no, if people thought like this, then english teachers would be out of a job. what woolf is attempting here clearly is not to reproduce the thought process itself but to develop a symbolic equivalent of thought, to use her command of english prose style to create for us in the rhythm, structure, and accumulation of detail in the sentence an emotional illumination of mrs ramsay's consciousness. a comparison here with symbolist painting may be in order. it's clear that many symbolist painters justified their style with reference to dreams and dream analysis. but no one dreams a symbolist painting. what the symbolist (like, say, dali) is doing is using his art to create for the viewer the emotional equivalent of dreams, to get us to recognize in the art something analogous to a dream experience. but in creating such symbols, the painter, like woolf, is doing something very sophisticated and simply beyond the world of how people really think and how they dream. the structure of the sentence, of course, does a good deal More than simply emphasize the importance of the inner life of mrs ramsay. it also characterizes that inner life in a curious way that is sustained for all of the characters in the novel. we can summarize this briefly by observing that characteristically the people in this novel, as in the above example, cannot complete a simple and coherent thought without a host of other impressions, memories, feelings, images, qualifications, and possibilities crowding in upon the mind. in this one sentence, for example, we are taken from the initial sense that something has happened (the opening of that sentence) through all of mrs ramsay's impressions of what is going on around her with her family into her sense of nature beyond the family-a sense that includes the contradictory sensations of solace and dread and leads to some momentary impression of the nature of life itself as ephemeral, subject only to the cruel dictates of time. thus, before the sentence closes, the details have placed this thought amid a welter of other thoughts crowding mrs ramsay's mind for attention. and in an instant, the peaceful scene has been transformed into one characterized by the last word: terror. nothing we recognize as very significant has changed in the external scene, but that isn't the point. the essential quality of life here is inner, and in that inner world the emotional changes can be abrupt, unexpected, and extreme. there is nothing particularly dramatic in the external scene; it is about as tranquil and unthreatening as a domestic scene might be-a family at play and rest. yet there is an intense inner drama amid all this mundane detail. woolf does not tell us that the real drama of life is inner, but the structure of the sentences forces us to acknowledge that as the major fact of life: one can go from security to dread in an instant for reasons one cannot fully comprehend. this style also indicates that the succession of thoughts is not in mrs ramsay's control. the style is, of course, beautifully controlled, but its effect on the reader is a constant feeling of surprise, complexity, and lack of control on the part of mrs ramsay. what the next qualifying clause is going to add to the accumulating details neither she nor the reader can tell. in the mind, as in the sentence, things happen "suddenly and unexpectedly," and the mood may shift from something as consoling as a cradle song to something as ominous as a "ghostly roll of drums remorselessly beat[ing] the measure of life," full of a sense of "destruction of the island and its engulfment in the sea." the terror she feels at the end of the clause does not arise from any decision she has consciously made or from anything terrifying she has experienced. the slightest change in her external environment has altered her mood in an instant. in this sense, too, we get a feeling from the structure of the sentence of the ruthless forward thrusting effects of time. for the thought process here cannot rest; there are further qualifications, modifying clauses, appositive phrases which insist on being heard in succession. and every piece added to the accumulating string further complicates, changes, and, in a sense, harasses the personality of the thinker. we learn explicitly enough, especially in part ii, of the corrosive effects of time on whatever there is of value in the world. but long before that section, the style itself insist upon the restless forward-driving, unsettling nature of the inner life. tranquility, if it comes, is momentary. there is no closure here. thus, woolf's style, i would suggest, not only creates a sense of the primacy of the inner life, of the extent to which the drama of everyday is determined by the complex succession of thoughts and feelings arising for reasons incommensurate with any external causes, but also characterizes that inner life as one over which the subject has relatively little control. mrs. ramsay, like others in the novel, can react emotionally to what is going on in her imagination; but people cannot do very much to order or control that world. the modernity of the style this aspect of the novel, i would suggest, is its most noteworthy feature and the one which, More than anything else, gives the work its distinctly modernist flavour. to make this point a little More clearly, i would first like to discuss some of the other works we have studied and then return to woolf's characters. to appreciate the significance of what woolf is doing we might think for a moment about the relationship in other books we have read between the inner world of the characters and their perceptions of the outer world. in homer, for example, the characters have a firm confidence in the external world. it may be unpredictable and often brutal, but they are confident that they understand why it is so (the gods, everyone agrees, are in charge). hence, nature and society have a certain stability of meaning, and human beings can understand themselves with reference to that natural order. so in homer, we see Again and Again, the characters declare how they think and feel with constant reference to the nature of things, and there is thus little tension between the inner world of the characters (which is generally not all that interesting) and the external world in which they move. we see the same thing in, say, hildegard. she is overwhelmingly confident that nature is everywhere evidence of god's handiwork, so that she has no difficulty in using natural imagery to explore the nature of human feelings and purposes. Once Again, there is no tension between her inner sense of herself and the natural order beyond her, and so she can easily urge us to understand ourselves in terms of god's work, the manifestations of which are present in every flower or tree. to these thinkers, then, there is a certain solidity to life, a reassuring certainty in the order of things, so that they can reassure whatever inner doubts they have against the stability which they see in the world around them. hence, their conceptions of themselves take on something of the solidity of that world. this is not to say that they can have no doubts but rather that there is a way of dealing with and resolving those doubts with reference to a system of order, the evidence for which is all around them: in nature, in social relationships, in the tasks they have to do, in their past and future. however, as we have seen already, this great confidence in the congruence of inner and outer sources of meaning was decisively challenged in the seventeenth century. in our reading we encountered this most clearly in the work of descartes, who urges us to distrust all contact with the external world, to direct our attentions inward, and to build whatever we can know upon a ruthless self-examination. only if we do that, can we come to any serious understanding of ourselves and the world (and even with that method, certain meanings we might want to have are not available). descartes is confident that, taking this inward turn, one can construct a More certain sense of the world around one and remain secure in the sense of one's relationship to god. hence, his meditations strives to create the beginnings of a suitable link between the inner self and the outer world of the natural order. and descartes is clearly confident that such a project can be continued. now, this inward turn, as we have discussed, creates a dichotomy between the inner self and the outer world, between mind and matter, between the thinking, feeling subject and the perceived objects of experience, and calls into question the traditional faith in understanding the self in terms of a wider natural order given by god. the sense of a separation between the self and such an order we called, in our discussions of marx, alienation, which, in the most general sense, refers to a feeling that one's full identity as imagined inside is not part, or not sufficiently part of one's real existence in the given world. and we have looked at various attempts (by, most notably, rousseau and marx and wordsworth) to overcome this feeling. we also saw in the novel the red and the black, which is in some ways a very interesting anticipation of to the lighthouse, how the central tensions in the life of julien sorel arose from this sense of separation and from his inability satisfactorily to deal with it. we did argue a good deal about whether the conclusion of that novel represents such a resolution, but, that aside, it is clear that in most of the rest of the novel, we are dealing with a character who knows himself so poorly and whose sense of the values of life are so inadequate that, for all his skills and intelligence, he blunders through life creating unhappiness for himself and for others. it's not that julien doesn't long for personal fulfillment or even at times have a clear image of what that might involve. but he has two major problems realizing that longing: in the first place, his inner sense of himself is fragile and changing, racked with doubts and insecurities; in the second place, the world he confronts and which insists on treating him as an object offers him no suitable avenue for him to pursue in quest of his fullest identity (except perhaps in the nostalgic images of the napoleonic past)-thus he lacks, say, the integrity of someone like jane eyre, in some senses equally romantic, but with a much firmer and More consistent sense of her own self. now, one characteristic feature of a good deal of modernist art which we have already considered is the recognition that such an attempt to resolve the question of alienation is futile. the self has become so fractured and the world has become so unknowable or so strange that the possibilities for connecting a sense of who i am as a human being with some wider purpose for life itself no longer exist. i may yearn for such a resolution, and i may even momentarily carry an image of what that fulfillment might actually mean. i might even sense, like prufrock, that without such fulfillment my life is going to be radically unsatisfactory. but if i set out, like prufrock, to obtain what my life needs, i am going to be defeated because the world does not answer to such a request and, More important, my own consciousness, my own integrity, such as it is, is not up to the task. and one way in which the modernist writers we have read evoke this sense of an unbreachable barrier between a fragmented inner self and a menacing and unknowable world is by creating a discrepancy between the style of narration and the external events being described, so that the reader is confronted with a constant tension between style and subject matter, and this tension becomes one of the major symbolic means of generating a sense of the anxiety of modern life. we talked about this a little bit in connection with kafka's prose in the metamorphosis. there the weird and horrific events are given to us, largely from the point of view of gregor's own mind, in a flat, unemotional, and prosaic style quite at odds with the strangeness of the situation. one wants what one finds in, say, shakespeare, some style commensurate to the situation. but we don't get that. one effect of this is to underscore just how inadequate gregor's mind is to gain any sense of the reality of the situation he or any of his family is in, and, beyond gregor, a sense of how language itself cannot capture the full meaning of these events. there is, as we observed, no closure. and we dealt with something of the same issue in dealing with the character of prufrock. here, as in the waste land, the contrast is between the richness of the past or of the occasional inner vision up against the sterile, ugly, poverty of the outside world (like an argument of insidious intent or a rat's alley). prufrock has, we can see, potentially a rich imagination, and he is certainly intelligent enough to sense what is wrong with his life. but whatever values life offers exist only in his inner imagination: the world outside does not match these images, and his attempt to realize them somehow (for he knows life will be meaningless unless he can realize them) are futile. this becomes most apparent in the closing lines of the poem, in which we learn that prufrock does indeed understand in his mind what the full beauty, vitality, and purpose of life might involve. but these images exist only in his dreams. when human voices wake him, he drowns. the chasm between his inner life and the world around him is something he cannot bridge. woolf is, in a sense, doing the same thing. here the events surrounding the characters are anything but weird-this novel is full of what should be cozy domesticity: a family holiday in a beautiful setting, full of friends, children, communal get-togethers, drinks, dinners, walks along the beach. but the style is wholly inappropriate to such a view of the events, for the style insists upon the dramatic complexity, unpredictability, painful tensions, and dangers inherent in every minor social turn. like gregor, mrs ramsay and others in the novel want closure. big questions keep insisting on raising themselves: what is the meaning of life? but the thought processes, as revealed in the style, show that no answer to such a question is possible, since no quiet and complete thinking is possible. there are always the interruptions from outside, from the memory, from associations, from buried feelings. how can one achieve any form of closure, when the personality who is asking the questions is incapable of holding onto a firm sense of itself, of controlling what is going on? even mr ramsay, famous throughout the country for the power of his logical mind, cannot control his own sense of himself and is as subject as everyone else to the sudden terrors of an unexpected thought or feeling which, as often as not, is resolved equally unexpectedly. another way of making this point is to stress that these modernist characters experience life as a flux, a disordered succession of inner thoughts, ambitions, hopes, desires, fears, something over which they exercise no firm control. in a moment there is time for decisions and revisions which a minute will reverse. having no reassuring sense of a permanent order, they have nothing to measure themselves against, no firm model of who they are, socially or individually. thus, they are defined by the emotions and memories and impressions of each passing moment. and they are helpless in front of the major questions of life, like "what is the purpose of life?" or "what have i done with my life?" or "what is happening to me?" they cannot face these questions because they cannot deal with life as a totality, since they experience it as a ceaseless flux of often dissociated impressions, unwelcome memories, desires (many of which go unsatisfied), and fears. so we get the sense of characters, isolated individuals, who endlessly introspect, wondering about their identity, the meaning of their lives, the significance of their feelings. often they raise these questions only on the inside, sometimes in the midst of the most mundane activities (like mrs ramsay). generally, the questions don't get taken into anything like a community forum, simply because there isn't such a forum, and in some cases, as in gregor's, such communication is impossible; in others, like prufrock's and mrs ramsay's, social conventions stand in the way of an open confession about one's deepest concerns before others (who in any case would probably be incapable of assisting, because they are wrestling in the same inner space with the same questions). the result is that they seem to live much of their lives picking away at the leaves of their own psyches, searching for some final significance. the effect, to borrow a metaphor from ibsen's peer gynt, is like peeling an onion. every layer one removes reveals another one underneath; and if one persists to the very centre, there's nothing there but empty space. the fragmented self this sense of what i have called the "fragmented self" is a particular concern of modernist writers. it's clear that there is no possibility in their world of the old social self, since the shared communal understanding of value upon which that depends has disappeared. it's true that mrs ramsay devotes her whole life to a project of conferring social value on people, seeking always to place people in appropriate traditional social arrangements, like guests at her home or table or partners in a marriage. but her society is too complex, too transitory, too vulnerable to provide any More, as it does in homer or shakespeare, a firm grounding for one's sense of who one is. in that sense, mrs ramsay is clearly a figure from the past, whose understanding of life, whose grasp on events, is shaped entirely by her ability as a social being to establish meaningful relationships among people. we can appreciate this quality in her by noting the difficulty mrs ramsay has in dealing with anyone or anything which does not fall immediately within her social orbit. people whom she does not have to care for as guests or family or as charitable cases, people who are beyond her social control, such people she does not like to think about; they make her uneasy (like her old friends the mannings). and, as we saw in that sample sentence with which i started, any sudden change in the quotidian daily environment fills her at Once with a sense of terror, just as any reminder of his own potential mediocrity fills her husband with a sense of total inadequacy and mortality. the point is that even if someone like mrs ramsay would like to live in a society firm in its shared beliefs, that world is no longer available to her, except to a very limited and temporary extent. and the alternative, the enlightenment project for the creation of the "independent self," the goal of wollstonecraft, rousseau, kant, and marx seems equally impossible. for what is the modern self? it is a welter of confusing and often contradictory images, held together by a personality ruled, as much as anything, by anxiety, uncertainty, and a vague dread. we see all this in eliot's "love song of j. alfred prufrock," and there's a good deal of a sense of that in woolf's novel as well. in an external world where young men are blown up in an instant and young women noted for their beauty die in childbirth and the sea airs eventually destroy all domestic arrangements, what is left of any social self? and in an internal world which is incapable of making any firm, lasting connections to the outer world and which is the prey of all sorts of transitory impressions and feelings, who can construct a firm sense of who one is? and without that, where is any answer to the value of life to be found? of course, in earlier times young women died in childbirth, and young men were killed in war. but because there was a structure of meaning to the world and because people understood themselves in terms of that structure they could understand the events within a given system of order, and that understanding was expressed in terms of the shared social rituals which conferred meaning on the events of daily life. in the world of gregor samsa, j. alfred prufrock, and the ramsays and their guests there are no longer any shared social rituals capable of withstanding the corroding effects of time and the constant shifting of the individual's perceptions, thoughts, and feelings. and thus any attempt to discover a meaning in the flux of experience, inner or outer, is bound to fail. death and decay remain the great mysteries of life, but now individuals stand before them isolated, confused, and anxious. so in a sense these modernists writers, woolf prominent among them, are taking direct aim at one of the highest goals of the enlightenment, the desire for a fully integrated, independent self, the autonomous individual who does not require a traditional social identity because she has learned through reason how to organize and direct her life. emancipating individuals from traditional social rituals, in these modernist works, seems to have resulted in something very different from what rousseau or kant or wollstonecraft hoped for. it has made them fragmented, anxious, weary, and confused about everything from their relationship to other people to their own sense of themselves. some final comments now, i've been focusing on just one aspect of the novel, and i don't want to suggest that's all there is to it. for this novel is, i think, in places a good deal More optimistic and joyful than either the metamorphosis or "prufrock." all that i have said may indeed be in the novel, and it may well be insisted upon throughout by the characteristic style woolf uses to guide the reader through the events. but there is something else, and i'd just like to refer to these before closing. it may be true that in this world there is no final meaning available, that the fragmented self in a disordered and rapidly changing world is not going to have its hopes for closure, for an end to alienation, satisfied. but things are not entirely hopeless. for life does grant moments of insight, flashes of meaning, in which something important is caught in the imagination, as if in the glare of the lighthouse beam. and if that moment inevitably passes by almost as soon as it has been realized, something has been discovered which one can at least remember. in this sense, there is a wordsworthian quality to parts of this novel, a sense that we can affirm things about life, even if what we affirm will Never amount to anything like a statement about the meaning of the experience. the dinner party, for example, at the end of part 1, or lily briscoe's painting, or the eventual trip to the lighthouse-these events confer value on life. something important is accomplished. and if in themselves they cannot withstand the power of time to destroy all, if the painting ends up as junk in someone's attic, if those at the dinner party end up with a bad marriage or dead a few years later, that does not entirely negate the moment in which something was seen and felt to make life More than just a welter of inner ideas, impressions, fears, hopes, and feelings piling up in a linear sequence like so many stacked up grammatical constructions in a complex sentence without an ending. that may, indeed, be the general condition of life, but there are moments when something is affirmed. now she need not listen. i could not last, she knew, but at the moment her eyes were so clear that they seemed to go round the table unveiling each of these people, and their thoughts and their feelings, without effort like a light stealing under water so that its ripples and the reeds in it and the minnows balancing themselves, and the sudden silent trout are all lit up hanging, trembling. so she saw them; she heard them; but whatever they said had also this quality, as if what they said was like the movement of a trout when, at the same time, one can see the ripple and the gravel, something to the right, something to the left; and the whole is held together; for whereas in active life she would be netting and separating one thing from another; she would be saying she liked the waverley novels or had not read them; she would be urging herself forward; now she said nothing. for the moment she hung suspended. with a sudden intensity, as if she saw it clear for a second, she drew a line there, in the centre. it was done; it was finished. yes, she thought, laying down her brush in extreme fatigue, i have had my vision..
Woolf - To the lighthouse.fb2
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Author: bernhard schlink book title: the reader ‚Äúarresting, philosophically elegant, morally complex‚Ä¶ mr. schlink tells this story with marvelous directness and simplicity, his writing stripped bare of any of the standard gimmicks of dramatization.‚ÄĚ ‚Äď the new york times ‚Äúthe best novel i read this year‚Ä¶ an unforgettable short tale about love, horror and mercy.‚ÄĚ ‚Äď¬†neil ascherson, independent on sunday books of the year ‚Äúbreathtaking‚Ä¶ a novel that sucks you in with its power, so that Once you start to read, you cannot put it down. truly exciting.‚ÄĚ ‚Äď focus munich ‚Äúone of the most successful, one of the richest, one of the most overwhelming novels i have read for a very long time‚Ä¶ entirely new and profoundly original.‚ÄĚ ‚Äď jorge semprun, le journal du dimanche ‚Äúsuperb.‚ÄĚ ‚Äď le monde *** originally published in switzerland, and gracefully translated into english by carol brown janeway, the reader is a brief tale about sex, love, reading, and shame in postwar germany. michael berg is 15 when he begins a long, obsessive affair with hanna, an enigmatic older woman. he Never learns very much about her, and when she disappears one day, he expects Never to see her Again. but, to his horror, he does. hanna is a defendant in a trial related to germany 's nazi past, and it soon becomes clear that she is guilty of an unspeakable crime. as michael follows the trial, he struggles with an overwhelming question: what should his generation do with its knowledge of the holocaust? "we should not believe we can comprehend the incomprehensible, we may not compare the incomparable‚Ä¶ should we only fall silent in revulsion, shame, and guilt? to what purpose?" the reader, which won the boston book review's fisk fiction prize, wrestles with many More demons in its few, remarkably lucid pages. what does it mean to love those people-parents, grandparents, even lovers-who committed the worst atrocities the world has ever known? and is any atonement possible through literature? schlink's prose is clean and pared down, stripped of unnecessary imagery, dialogue, and excess in any form. what remains is an austerely beautiful narrative of the attempt to breach the gap between germany 's pre- and postwar generations, between the guilty and the innocent, and between words and silence..
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Author: margaret atwood book title: the blind assassin publisher: random house audio publishing group year: 2000 isbn: 0385475721 the man booker prize winner‚Äď2000 margaret atwood takes the art of storytelling to new heights in a dazzling new novel that unfolds layer by astonishing layer and concludes in a brilliant and wonderfully satisfying twist. for the past twenty-five years, margaret atwood has written works of striking originality and imagination. in ‚Äúthe blind assassin‚ÄĚ, she stretches the limits of her accomplishments as Never before, creating a novel that is entertaining and profoundly serious. the novel opens with these simple, resonant words: ‚Äúten days after the war ended, my sister drove a car off the bridge.‚ÄĚ they are spoken by iris, whose terse account of her sister laura‚Äôs death in 1945 is followed by an inquest report proclaiming the death accidental. but just as the reader expects to settle into laura‚Äôs story, atwood introduces a novel-within-a-novel. entitled ‚Äúthe blind assassin‚ÄĚ, it is a science fiction story told by two unnamed lovers who meet in dingy backstreet rooms. when we return to iris, it is through a 1947 newspaper article announcing the discovery of a sailboat carrying the dead body of her husband, a distinguished industrialist. told in a style that magnificently captures the colloquialisms and clich√©s of the 1930s and 1940s, ‚Äúthe blind assassin‚ÄĚ is a richly layered and uniquely rewarding experience. the novel has many threads and a series of events that follow one another at a breathtaking pace. as everything comes together, readers will discover that the story atwood is telling is not only what it seems to be‚ÄĒbut, in fact, much More. ‚Äúthe blind assassin‚ÄĚ proves Once Again that atwood is one of the most talented, daring, and exciting writers of our time. like the handmaid‚Äôs tale, it is destined to become a classic..
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Author: cormac mccarthy book title: all the pretty horses in all the pretty horses, cormac mccarthy begins his border trilogy with a coming of age tale that is a departure from the bizarre richness and mysterious violence of his early novels, yet in many ways preserves the mystery and the richness in a More understated form. like blood meridian, this novel follows a young man's journey to the regions of the unknown. john grady cole, More heroic than the protagonists of mccarthy's earlier novels, confronts the evil that is an inescapable part of the universe as well as the evil that grows out of his own ignorance and pride. his story is told in a style often restrained and simple, embedded with lyrical passages that echo his dreams and memory. in the spring of 1948 on a small texas ranch, sixteen year old john grady cole attends the funeral of his grandfather, with whom he has lived since his parents' separation. the grandfather's ranch has been left to john grady's mother, a small-time actress who has no interest in it and will sell it. john grady's father, psychologically damaged by world war ii and now physically ill as well, tells his son goodbye. with no apparent future in texas, and sensing the threat of the new era to the traditional life he values, john grady urges his old friend rawlins to accompany him to mexico. there, john grady will find that his innocence, or ignorance, will ultimately lead him close to destruction. before reaching the border they meet jimmy blevins, a dangerous young boy on a magnificent horse. even though cole and rawlins do not trust blevins and are sure his horse is stolen, they allow him to join them despite their doubts. as they ride into mexico, they realize that they are no longer in a world that they can understand. when blevins' clothes and horse disappear during a thunderstorm, they search a nearby mexican town, where they find the clothes and finally the horse. in spite of rawlins' voiced forebodings, blevins steals the horse back, and as john grady and rawlins flee the town blevins gallops past them, pursued by armed men. john grady and rawlins ride south, coming at last to a ranch, the hacienda de nuestra senora de la purisima conception. as they talk with the vaqueros about the possibility of employment, john grady sees a beautiful girl on a black horse, alejandra, the daughter of hacendado don hector rocha y villareal. the heir of an aristocratic family, don hector is avidly interested in breeding wild mountain horses with his own stock, so john grady and rawlins join the vaqueros; john grady amazes everyone with his ability to break the wild horses quickly and gently. when don hector questions cole about his past, he omits the episode with blevins and the fact that he and rawlins may now be wanted as accomplices in blevins's horse theft. concerned about his blossoming relationship with alejandra, duena alfonsa, don hector's aunt and alejandra's godmother, warns john grady away from the rebellious girl, and informs him that don hector will Never allow her to marry an american, especially a poor one. but alejandra comes to him one night and they become lovers. a few days later john grady and rawlins are arrested and taken to a jail in encantada, where blevins is already imprisoned for the murder of three men. while the three americans are transported to the state prison at saltillo, blevins is taken from the group and shot. at the prison, they are questioned and beaten, and rawlins is injured seriously. john grady, attacked by another prisoner, whom he must kill, learns that evil exists not only in the world but in himself. when he and rawlins are suddenly released as mysteriously as they were arrested, rawlins returns to texas. but john grady goes back to la purisima to search for alejandra, who is not there. Once Again duena alfonsa makes clear to him the impossibility of the match. she tells her own story of the power of ignorance and evil (her love for a man who was killed by a mob after helping depose the dictator diaz) and of her determination to protect alejandra. although john grady does meet alejandra one last time at a hotel in zacatecas, it is only as a farewell: she chooses her family's approval (and perhaps their money). in pain, cole returns to encantada where he finds blevins's horse, innocent like all animals and yet the cause of much death and loss. john grady captures both the horse and the brutal police captain who shot blevins, and heads homeward. en route, the captain is seized by brigands with a score to settle with him, and john grady finally returns to texas. he finds even less there than before: his father and his childhood nurse are both dead. he rides on with the stolen horse, seeking to restore it to its rightful owner. john grady has learned, but not yet enough; he has left home and returned a changed man, but there is no home to receive him. all the pretty horses is a hero's quest without a neat resolution, a book in which the strange light of mythic struggles shines through the quick-paced adventure. the border trilogy continues with volume two, the crossing, and concludes with the third volume, cities of the plain..
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Author: tana french book title: the likeness the eagerly anticipated follow-up to the new york times bestselling psychological thriller in the woods six months after the events of in the woods, detective cassie maddox is still trying to recover. she?s transferred out of the murder squad and started a relationship with detective sam o?neill, but she?s too badly shaken to make a commitment to him or to her career. then sam calls her to the scene of his new case: a young woman found stabbed to death in a small town outside dublin. the dead girl?s id says her name is lexie madison?the identity cassie used years ago as an undercover detective?and she looks exactly like cassie. with no leads, no suspects, and no clue to lexie?s real identity, cassie?s old undercover boss, frank mackey, spots the opportunity of a lifetime. they can say that the stab wound wasn?t fatal and send cassie undercover in her place to find out information that the police Never would and to tempt the killer out of hiding. at first cassie thinks the idea is crazy, but she is seduced by the prospect of working on a murder investigation Again and by the idea of assuming the victim?s identity as a graduate student with a cozy group of friends. as she is drawn into lexie?s world, cassie realizes that the girl?s secrets run deeper than anyone imagined. her friends are becoming suspicious, sam has discovered a generations-old feud involving the old house the students live in, and frank is starting to suspect that cassie?s growing emotional involvement could put the whole investigation at risk. another gripping psychological thriller featuring the headstrong protagonist we?ve come to love, from an author who has proven that she can deliver. *** tana french's second novel, the likeness, is a suspenseful and extremely enjoyable read. like her first (into the woods), it is set in and around dublin, ireland. the story entails an investigation of a homicide (it is a mystery, after all), but it also has something more: an inquiry into the nature of human selfhood. cassie maddox used to be a detective on the murder squad but transferred to domestic violence (dv) about six months ago. murder investigation is not the only thing she's left behind; she also spent time as an undercover agent. in her mid-twenties at the time, she was young enough to pass for a college student and had spent nine months posing as an undergraduate named lexie madison, investigating a drug ring. unfortunately, cassie's career as lexie came to an abrupt end when she was stabbed. cassie is getting ready to head to dv one day when she gets a call from her boyfriend sam, who still works in murder. could she come to a crime scene, right away? puzzled, cassie goes to an abandoned two-room house in the rural town of glenskehy, where a body was found. frank mackey, with whom she had worked on the undercover case, is there as well. cassie is startled by what she finds: the victim could have been her twin sister. what's worse, the girl's id says her name is lexie madison. here is a mystery twice over: who killed this girl, and who is she, really? lexie madison Never existed except as an undercover front. whoever the girl was, she had constructed a life for herself as lexie, a graduate student in english. with four fellow students, she shared the "big house" in town (a mansion that one of the students inherited), and judging from the videos found on her phone, they were as thick as thieves. brought in for questioning, the four say they were together the night lexie died and hadn't left the house. lexie had gone on her customary nightly walk and simply Never returned. stymied in the investigation, frank convinces first sam and then cassie that the only way to find out what happened is to send cassie undercover as lexie. it is a Once-in-a-career opportunity for undercover work but very dangerous. frank concocts a story that lexie survived the stabbing and, now recovered from being in a coma, is returning home. they drop her off at the house, with the four friends waiting, and the perilous charade begins. cassie must work to find out what happened without giving herself away by the things she doesn't know..
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Author: peter mayle book title: a good year from publishers weekly mayle's breezy, uncomplicated fifth novel (chasing cezanne, etc.) and ninth book follows 30-something max skinner from a sabotaged financial career in london to his adoption of the proven√ßal lifestyle on an inherited vineyard in france. max spent holidays at his uncle henry's vineyard as a child, so when he inherits the place, the prospect of returning is tempting; a generous "bridging loan" from ex-brother-in-law charlie seals the deal. the estate, le griffon, is in a dire state of disrepair and the wine cellar is filled with bottles of a dreadful-tasting swill, but it's nothing that vineyard caretaker claude roussel and prim housekeeper madame passepartout can't resolve. max settles into his new life easily thanks to the attentions of local notary nathalie auzet and busty cafe owner fanny. the arrival of young californian "wine brat" christie roberts, uncle henry's long-lost daughter, complicates matters for max, but her surprise offer and charlie's arrival lessen the impact of a vicious vineyard scandal involving a delicious, high-priced, discreetly produced wine called le coin perdu. mayle's simple story provides lighthearted if unadventurous reading and a fond endorsement of the pleasures of viniculture. from the washington post even a hyperactive terrier will sometimes melt to the floor, paws in the air and tongue alop, when he's approached by someone he trusts. but will he get a soul-satisfying belly rub this time or just a quick pat and tickle? the expectant pooch Never knows. so it is for fans of peter mayle, who became the adoptive bard of provence with his phenomenally successful a year in provence. will admirers open the ex-advertising man's ninth book and find the mayle whose eye for detail and ear for language make for satisfying wallows in the south of france (the original year, hotel pastis, anything considered) or the mayle who sometimes slices the saucisson a bit thin in an effort to perpetuate his franchise (toujours provence, encore provence)? the short answer is that a good year, mayle's latest fictional confection, winds up slightly in the latter category. Once Again we have the beleaguered brit at an unhappy crossroad. in hotel pastis it was simon shaw being stripped bare by his newly minted ex-wife; in anything considered it was bennett, the brit on his uppers trying to score by flushing toilets in closed-up manor houses to keep an invented strain of dung beetles from invading the plumbing lines (that actually was funny). and Once Again the sunny south comes to the rescue, with the potential for making a living without losing one's soul, with a rasher of busty, leggy women and, of course, with good food and drink. but, as the creators of television's "law and order" understand, why tamper with a winning formula? and thus are we launched into the marginal life of max skinner, a london investment banker suddenly deal-less and jobless on the streets of the city, where the day's weather forecast is for "scattered showers, followed by outbreaks of heavier rain, with a chance of hail." and all this is followed, in peter mayle's classic caper formula, by timely good luck (inheritance, on the very day he loses his job, of a beloved uncle's big old house and vineyard in the hilly luberon region of provence), More good luck (dishy village maidens and a languid new lifestyle to explore), a halfway-engaging intrigue (an unknown american rival for the estate and the mysterious interest in vines that seem to produce nothing but pipi de chat ‚Äď you know, cat pee) and then More good luck (they all drink happily every after). coming soon to a movie theater near you, thanks to filmmaker ridley scott, whose "nose for a good story" got mayle started on the rather thin plot and who already has "a good year" in production. are we just being cranky? maybe. there really is a comfort factor that assures long, profitable lives to characters ‚Äď fictional detectives, for instance ‚Äď whose next formula book readers learn to anticipate. but when the formula is presented practically bare-bones, with only cursory attempts at embellishment, heretofore faithful readers may walk away feeling they've been snookered. mayle's deftness with detail ‚Äď grace notes rather than entire imagery-laden passages ‚Äď has been thoroughly catalogued. but there's detail that moves you right along: "he turned off the n7 toward rognes and followed the narrow road that twisted through groves of pine and oak, warm air coming through the open window, the sound of patrick bruel whispering 'parlez-moi d'amour' trickling like honey from the radio." (okay, moves you along with a little huffing and puffing.) and then there's detail that stops you cold: " 'air france to marseille?' the girl at the desk didn't even bother to consult her computer. 'out of luck there, sir. air france doesn't fly direct to marseille from london anymore. i could try british airways.' " yes, by all means, please do. the caper in a good year revolves around a mysterious small-batch cult wine that Never makes it to the wine store and trades as an investment. but given that the bulk of mayle's faithful are presumed francophiles and therefore at least marginally interested in viticulture, the false note on page 90 is perplexing. as max inspects his vineyard for the first time he finds a piece of his land that "sloped away gently down to the east‚Ä¶ the surface appeared to consist entirely of jagged limestone pebbles, blinding white in the sun, warm to the touch, an immense natural radiator. it seemed unlikely that even the most undemanding of weeds could find sufficient nourishment to grow here. and yet the vines appeared to be healthy." perhaps max has Never read descriptions of the poor, gravelly soil in many of the finest districts of bordeaux, source of some of the priciest wines in the world. but those who have done so are doomed to spend the next 197 pages wondering why mayle would give the game away so early. kindly interpretation: we're meant to read on, smiling slightly, feeling superior to poor max. or, darker thought: mayle thinks we're clueless enough to fall for this. even as venerable a novelist as graham greene recognized that lighter fare ‚Äď our man in havana, stamboul train ‚Äď had a role to play in his life as a writer and ours as readers. he nonetheless flinched slightly, labeling these works "entertainments." as entertaining as peter mayle can be, he might aim a bit higher ‚Äď if not for his own entertainment, then for ours. wafer-thin saucisson, oui. pipi de chat on the rocks? non! *** in a good year, max skinner's london career has just taken a nosedive when he suddenly inherits his uncle's vineyard in provence. leaving one life behind to start another, max soon discovers that the wine made on his uncle's land is swill, but he's captivated by the village, landscape, weather, and the beautiful notaire. he can't understand why the caretaker is so eager to buy the land when the wine is so bad, and then a woman claiming to be his uncle's long-lost daughter arrives from california with her claim on the property. max's new life threatens to fall out from under him before it can even take off. peter mayle (author of a year in provence) has written a light-hearted novel that has received positive reviews. bookpage says, "brimming with colorful, eccentric characters, a good year offers both a behind-the-scenes peek at the high-stakes wine business and a voyeuristic portrait of provencal village life. richly evocative of the pleasures of both place and palate, mayle's latest is sure to entertain and delight his many devotees.".
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Author: james patterson book title: judge & jury from publishers weekly bestsellers patterson and gross (lifeguard) Once Again deliver what their fans expect in this slapdash revenge thriller. when mob godfather dominic cavello is finally brought to trial by fbi agent nick pellisante, his longtime nemesis, the accused is strangely unconcerned even as a parade of his former criminal associates finger him as having ordered a hit on a corrupt businessman. the gangster's plan to intimidate the decision-makers at his trial reaches its climax when he arranges for a bomb to blow up the bus transporting the jury. the sole survivor teams up with pellisante to make cavello pay. numerous legal howlers that would be obvious even to those who only know about trials from watching law and order may annoy some readers. from booklist judge and jury gets off to a slightly slow start but delivers plenty of twists and turns. fbi agent nick pellisante has finally done the impossible: captured mob boss dominic cavello. the jury is selected and cavello's trial progresses smoothly-it seems the conviction pellisante is hoping for is within his reach. several formerly loyal henchmen now sitting in jail strike deals with the prosecution and testify about the savage murders cavello ordered, and pellisante takes the stand to detail how cavello shot two of his colleagues while trying to elude capture. but cavello has hired richard nordeshenko, a methodical and calculating killer, to make sure the trial Never concludes. nordeshenko carries out his plan with brutal efficiency, leaving a wake of devastation in his path. pellisante is crushed by the abrupt end of the trial and determined to make sure that the retrial isn't similarly derailed, but cavello and nordeshenko have an even More diabolical plan in store this time around. a compelling hero and a truly evil villain distinguish this exciting read. *** bestselling author james patterson returns with the #1 blockbuster thriller of the summer, an unstoppable novel of law and revenge. senior fbi agent nick pellisante is closing in on the notorious mob boss "the electrician," when the scheduled sting goes spectacularly awry. two fbi agents are dead, the boss is wounded, and pellisante vows the electrician's next move will be from a jail cell. andie echeverra, a part-time actress and a single, full-time mom, is assigned her next role as juror #11 in the landmark trial against mafia don dominic cavello. everybody is on edge. no one has ever crossed the man whose orders have made entire families disappear. though cavello's influence extends across blue uniforms and black robes, the case should be open-and-shut. but the legal system fails with devastating results, and nick and andie are the only ones left to seek justice. to stop the electrician, they must take matters into their own hands. they are the judge and jury now. james patterson spins an all-out heart-pounding legal thriller that pits two people against the most vicious and powerful mobster since john gotti..
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Author: james burke book title: the tin roof blowdown tight plotting, solid finish because he‚Äôs a damn good writer james lee burke knows how to keep a plot going from start to finish with no loose ends or out-of-the-blue surprises that amateurishly attempt to explain and finish off a narrative. he easily weaves several ancillary situations into the story line of the tin roof blowdown. these are of interest on their own, but More importantly they serve to expand and add often curious layers to the main show that centers around the eye of mayhem left behind by a pair of hurricanes. i bring this up since i just finished reading a book by jeffrey deaver titled the cold moon. the bad guy, a most interesting sociopath called the watchmaker who is a brilliant killer with machinations of machiavellian stature, is the author of a poem about a cold moon, so one would suppose that he would figure prominently in the denouement of the novel. he doesn‚Äôt. not at all. he escapes from the cops and vanishes from the book with nearly one-hundred pages left, obviously setting a not-so-subtle stage for a return in another deaver effort. this strikes me as venal artifice by a writer who certainly has reached a point of financial and critical security where such shenanigans are unnecessary and beneath him. none of this fakery for burke. from the first book i read by him years ago, the neon rain to others that included black cherry blues, the lost get-back boogie, jolie blon‚Äôs bounce, and now this one, burke has played it straight telling his stories and making sure loose ends are tied up when the last page is read. and like i said he can write. i said he smiled. that‚Äôs not quite right. jude shined the world on and slipped its worst punches and in a fight knew how to swallow his blood and Never let people know he was hurt. he had his jewish mother‚Äôs narrow eyes and chestnut hair, and he combed it straight back in a hum, like a character in a 1930s movie. somehow he reassured others that the earth was a good place, that the day was a fine one, and that good things were about to happen to all of us. tight, succinct descriptions like the one above or similarly structured vignettes connect and in doing so glide the reader from scene to scene. none of this is as easy as burke makes it look. that‚Äôs called skill. he‚Äôs got it in spades. but this is to be expected of a man who‚Äôs written More than twenty-five novels, a man who divides his time between seemingly disparate locations ‚Äď missoula, montana and new iberia, louisiana. living in these two places seems to give him an expanded and sympathetic view of the world and those of us who bump and grind our way through it making his characters and their short comings easily assimilated, allowing the reader to experience sympathy and often empathy. the setting of the tin roof blowdown is largely post-apocalypse louisiana following the devastation wrought by first hurricane katrina then rita. the landscape has been reduced to a naturally nuked wasteland where murder, rape and theft are the order of the day perpetrated by both punks run amok and many cops. iberia parish sheriff‚Äôs detective dave robicheaux is deployed to new orleans, the Once grand city now reduced to a feudal state without electrical power, clean water, food or any sense of societal order. bloated bodies ‚Äď humans, cats, dogs ‚Äď float in flooded streets or lie tangled in downed, shattered trees. in this chaos robicheaux must locate two serial rapists, a morphine-addicted priest, and a vigilante who quite possibly is More dangerous than the thugs looting the city and shooting at rescue helicopters overhead. based on past books, just another day at the office for robicheaux. burke‚Äôs got so much going on here that it would be easy for him to inadvertently confuse the reader, if not himself, beyond salvation allowing the book to devolve into a miasma of none-related tales ‚Äď a rag-tag collection of short stories pretending to be a novel. again his skill and also confidence as a writer Never allows this to happen. not even close. each section and chapter advances the drama logically and without undo cliff hangings. a good example is when a killer stalking the detective‚Äôs daughter is spotted outside a cabin. out among the willows, i saw the solitary fisherman lean down in his boat and pick up something from the bottom. he knocked his hat off his head to give himself better vision and raised the rifle to his shoulder. i could not make out the features of his face, but the moon had started to rise and i saw the light gleam on his bald head inside the shadows. i was already out the screen door and running down the slope when he let off the first round. so many mystery writers would then wander off for a chapter or several on another tangent leaving a person wondering what‚Äôs going on back at the bayou. not burke. he Again displays his confidence by moving directly forward with the above scene in the next chapter. he knows that each element in his books can stand on its own and doesn‚Äôt need the tired device of leaving the reader up in the air for pages on end to maintain interest in the overall narrative arc. and burke slips in sharp, humorous observations on the human condition throughout the book like this one following an argument between robicheaux and his wife, a former nun. i just went outside and started the truck, my face hot, my ears ringing with the harshness of our exchange. the yard had fallen into shadow and cicadas were droning in the trees, like a bad headache that won‚Äôt go away. just as i was backing into the street, regretting my words, trying to accept molly‚Äôs anger and hurt feelings, she came out on the gallery and waved good-bye. that‚Äôs what happens when you marry nuns. for those who‚Äôve not yet read burke, the tin roof blowdown is a great place to start. for those who are already fans of his, this mystery is merely one More top-notch effort by a most talented author..
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Year: 2001 comment: lyrics **************************** somebody told me that i'd always have to bow if that was true we would've fallen apart by now the More you think the less you hand away so can you hear this its the fake sound of progress...... never reason with a fool but is that unkind looks like i've lost my mind Once again i know it all sounds so contrived but it's got to me you know i've got to be More than this dont fret dont scorn cos i walk a different street to you you l.
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