Monday, November 27, 2006

What a bad reader am I

Oh what a bad reader am I. Maybe it is the carnival of eating that comes with the Thanksgiving to Christmas season, but I had a hard time with my books over the weekend. I started the True Believer, but I found the organization a bit annoying. The author makes a point and then has a series of numbered paragraphs that support or explore it. The book claims to describe the true believer mentality which the author associates with totalitarians and the militant religous. Among the shared beliefs are a hatred of the present, a belief that the future will be better with the right action and the sublimation of self into the whole. The dark side of this is that individuals don't matter especially in the pursuit of the idealized future. Hence it is ok to kill, maim or destroy to realize the future. Very intersesting idea, but once I digested it, I didn't want to proceed.

I also read some of Empires of the Word, which is a history of the world's major languages. My problem is my uneven interest in the world languages. I was interested in the rise and fall of Latin, why Greek didn't take in SW Asia and how Chinese has stayed the same, but other areas were of less interest. For me this was a book to hop around and not to read cover to cover. This always makes me feel guilty.

So what did I read instead? A monster sf novel in the form of Judas Unchained. This one has some issues (mostly in the form of world creation) but it is enthralling. And very long. I also spent time with the Geographer's Library, which is another literary thriller about a MacGuffin with a rich history. This one is on the remainder stack at Powell's, which is too bad (for the author if not the reader). I like it, despite a somewhat peculiar organization.

Speaking of Powell's, I visited the new Beaverton location. It's quite nice. Very spacious and relaxing.


lisa_emily said...

Hey, I broke my promise of trying to read one book at a time and now I'm reading four- gasp!

Anyway that Empires of the Word book line smighty interesting- I guess its another one to add to my toppling pile...

Tripp said...

Reading one book at a time is a hardship! My normal plan is one fiction and one non-fiction, although I often spill over.

The language book is good, but for me it is a read a chapter and put it down sort of book. Not one for checking out of the library.