Thursday, February 23, 2012
One year ago the state of Wisconsin was in an uproar. Governor Scott Walker and the Republican state legislature proposed a far-reaching law restricting the rights of government workers to bargain collectively. The reaction was immediate and unprecedented. The Democratic members of the Senate walked out, staying in Illinois for three weeks to block the vote, and tens of thousands of people converged on the capital, some camping out in the Capitol building for weeks. The protest in many ways paved the way for Occupy Wall Street later in the year. The crowds were non-violent, diverse, exuberant, cooperative, creative, angry and persistent. Though the walls of the Capitol were covered with posters, the occupants used non-marring tape to protect the walls. Cleanup brigades made the janitors' work easy. People around the country called in orders to Ian's Pizza to feed the multitudes. Police (who were exempted from the law) maintained easy dialog with the protestors and joined the crowd after their shifts. We Are Wisconsin is one of several books chronicling those heady moments. The book collects short columns, blog posts and even Twitter tweets to give readers the flavor of the movement and some brief analysis. Unfortunately there are no pictures.
For those not following the events, here's what happened: The legislation ultimately passed but in the recall elections which ensued two Republicans were defeated. Over one million signatures were gathered to recall the governor and a recall election is likely this spring. Reading the book will give you some idea of what is was like to participate in this historic moment.
Sunday, February 19, 2012
This year's Oscars ceremony on February 26 has several book adaptations competing for Best Picture category. Included are :
Kaui Hart Hemmings' The Descendents
Michael Lewis' Moneyball
Kathryn Stockett's The Help
Brian Selznick's The Invention of Hugo Cabret
Michael Morpurgo's War Horse
Saturday, February 18, 2012
Pulphead by John Jeremiah Sullivan
I really liked this collection of essays from someone I think is a soon-to-be-famous writer. I used to read the New Yorker, and while I've been neglectful recently, I still enjoy non-fiction essay writing. John Jeremiah Sullivan's essays made me realize how much I enjoy that style. His topics range from his brother accidentally electrocuting himself to his house in Wilmington, NC being used for the set of the TV show One Tree Hill. Funny and also insightful stuff.
Monday, February 13, 2012
Did you enjoy the tv series Miami Vice, Hill Street Blues, and Cagney & Lacey? Robert Crais was the writer behind some of the episodes of these shoes, winning an Emmy nomination for Hill Street Blues.
His characters and stories continue to delight readers today although he has focused on creating characters who have extraordinary talent and training in special operation forces. Elvis Cole and Joe Pike have made their appearances in his earlier books. Taken introduces a third Delta Force alum and government mercenary named Jon Stone as Pike solicits his aid in saving Elvis Cole from the hands of Human Traffickers who steal illegals entering the country through Mexico from the various international cartels--Mexican, Asian, Russian, etc.
The suspense is high and the story is fast. Pay attention because thoughts and events are told through alternating scenarios expressed by the characters.
I loved the audio because the reader, Luke Daniels, portrays the characters' personalities so well. Enjoy!
Thursday, February 9, 2012
|Fingerprints of the Gods: The Evidence of Earth's Lost Civilizaton|
By Hancock, Graham
Check our Catalog
Could the story of mankind be older than we have previously believed? Hancock takes readers along on a quest for the proof of the existence of an as yet unidentified civilizarion of remote antiquity. Evidence has been misidentified or misinterpreted, and a picture of this great Ice Age civilization has eluded archaeologists according to Hancock.
Authors like Erich Von Daniken and Zechara Sitchin try to use their interpretation of the ancient stone ruins of Egypt, Mexico, the Andes and Sumeria to suggest that earth was visited by extraterrestrials. Hancock uses the same type of methodology to suggest that an advanced civilization existed in the Antarctic. He argues that a shift in the earth's crust caused the continents to move resulting in the destruction of his hypothesized civilization. A fun read for those interested in archeology and lost civilizations.