Tuesday, January 26, 2010

What I Am Reading (or Have Recently Read)

From the Desk of: Joel

1) "When Everything Changed: The Amazing Journey of American Women from 1960 to the Present," by Gail Collins

When Everything Changed: The Amazing Journey of American Women from 1960 to the Present

"Gail Collins's When Everything Changed points out what the women on "Mad Men" know: that period in our history was less enjoyable for the ladies.... The early pages of Ms. Collins's book are peppered with accounts of incidents so outrageous they almost seem like jokes....but Ms. Collins underlines the serious consequences of such risible moments by including the stories of individual women-from overworked housewives to marginalized politicians-whose lives were cramped and deformed by the culture's low opinion of their capabilities.... Ms. Collins reminds us of how many aspects of our lives were affected by the battles these women fought. And even readers who lived through this era may be surprised to discover how much they never knew, or have forgotten" (New York Times Francine Prose )

2) "The Portrait of a Lady," by Henry James

The Portrait of a Lady (Penguin Classics)
"Rich people and the traps that they set for themselves. I had a hard time relating to the subject matter.
Henry James is an excellent author, his cheracters are vivid, his stories very well written but Mr. James was born into money and it shows all through this story.
I found the frequent use of French phrases and expressions inconvenient because I had to keep referring to the appendix to be able to follow the story.
Although I enjoyed the story, my enjoyment was tinged with the impression that the people in the story had too much time on their hands and were in need of more constructive pursuits than meddling in the lives of others." (Amazon.com Customer Review)

3) "Stalingrad: The Fateful Siege" by Antony Beevor

Stalingrad: The Fateful Siege: 1942-1943
"Antony Beevor's thoughtfully researched compendium recalls this epic struggle for Stalingrad. No one, least of all the Germans, could foretell the deep well of Soviet resolve that would become the foundation of the Red Army; Russia, the Germans believed, would fall as swiftly as France and Poland. The ill-prepared Nazi forces were trapped in a bloody war of attrition against the Russian behemoth, which held them in the pit of Stalingrad for nearly two years." (Official Amazon.com Review)

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