All posts tagged: David Mitchell

Book Report: August 2015

Book Report: August 2015

Whenever I’m the assigned discussion leader of our book club, I don’t get to read a lot. It’s not supposed to be that way but still, I could only focus my energies on one book. The Ubik book discussion took place more than a week ago. It was a fun book to talk about because you get to throw around all these theories on what really happened without fearing that you’ll be incomprehensible. And that’s because all theories are acceptable; the book doesn’t offer one single conclusion. So now that my moderating duties are done, I should be catching up on my reading back log, yes? Unfortunately, I’m not. It’s not that I can’t read or don’t want to read. It’s just that I’m distracted with games. Gosh. Let me go off the bookish track here. Ever since I learned that there’s going to be a remake of Final Fantasy VII, one of my favorite Playstation games, I just couldn’t stop thinking of those early teenage years when I studied strategy guides instead of my lessons and I …

The Bone Clocks by David Mitchell

Book Review – The Bone Clocks by David Mitchell

The Bone Clocks tells the story of Holly Sykes and it covers six decades of her life. It begins with a teenage Holly running away from her family and ends with a granny Holly trying to survive in a dystopian future where the world’s oil resource has run out. The novel is divided into six novella-length parts, the form that Mitchell is, I daresay, most comfortable with, and they represent a decade each of Holly’s life. Each part is narrated by a different character. There’s Holly herself in the first and last parts, a Cambridge undergraduate and a returning character from Black Swan Green (Mitchell’s fourth), a war journalist who may have become a war junkie, a writer who was once the Wild Child of British Letters, and another returnee from The Thousand Autumns of Jacob de Zoet (Mitchell’s fifth) who is a doctor and an Horologist. What is an Horologist? It is a soul who, after its body dies, can’t help but be resurrected in another child’s nearly dying body. It’s a sort of a birthright, …

Book Report: July 2015

Book Report: July 2015

This is a ho-hum month. I did finish a couple of books but that feels like months ago. I guess that’s because of my fourth moderating stint at our book club. The online discussion is on full steam so I’m not really getting much reading done. Well, yes! I’ve moderated a book discussion for each year since we started these face-to-face discussions. I would have liked to sit out for a year but I get restless just trying to make the thought settle in my head. Books Finished: Austerlitz by W. G. Sebald – Mesmerizing. I keep putting off a review because the haunting feeling is too much (let’s not get started on the review backlog). 5 out of 5 stars. Neuromancer by William Gibson – They say that this is a science fiction must-read because of how it saw the Internet’s future. Really, now? Bleech! 1 out of 5 stars. The Quiet American by Graham Greene – Our book of the month. I’m going t read more of Greene’s books. 4 out of 5 stars. Ubik by Philip K. Dick – …

Literary Snobbery Series

The LSS Book List, Part 6

Visit the The LSS Book List page for more information about this post. No One Writes to the Colonel (El coronel no tiene quien le escriba) and Other Stories by Gabriel García Márquez (1961, M) – GGM is famous for magical realism, but that doesn’t mean that he’s only as good as One Hundred Years of Solitude. Try this collection of realist short stories (no insomniac towns, traveling blood, or women rising up to the heavens above) and you’ll realize that the man is indeed a master of the written word. The last story can’t help Noli Me Tangere (Touch Me Not) by José Rizal (1887, H) – I had a little trouble with this entry because this is required reading in Philippine high schools. But this isn’t internationally popular like those European or Latin American or Japanese novels. And how about reading this for pleasure and in a translation other than Filipino (in my case, English)? Or better yet, how about in Spanish? Number9Dream by David Mitchell (2001, M) – Eiji Miyake has never …

Hi Angus. Hello David.

If David Mitchell stopped writing books

Think about an event you’ve attended and loved. Your hometown’s annual fair. That life-changing music festival. A conference that shifted your worldview. Imagine you’re told it will be cancelled forever or taken over by an evil corporate force. How does that make you feel? Today’s twist: While writing this post, focus again on your own voice. Pay attention to your word choice, tone, and rhythm. Read each sentence aloud multiple times, making edits as you read through. Before you hit “Publish,” read your entire piece out loud to ensure it sounds like you. Writing 101’s challenge today is just perfectly timed. I’ll be talking about a bookish event, of course. I’m still reeling from all the good feels that I had since David Mitchell’s webchat yesterday. What if it were cancelled? I wouldn’t have minded it because I was at work and I couldn’t really mope at my desk had there been such an announcement. Besides, I wasn’t really expecting anything. It was a Q&A thing, and even if he didn’t answer my question, I would still get something from the answers that …

My Thirty Greatest Books

Thirty Years, Thirty Books

At the moment of typing this, I realize that I’m spending my last couple of hours as a twenty-something hacking at my book shelves and sorting through my memory for my greatest books. I haven’t read a lot yet, but I already have my small personal canon. There are the random books of my childhood, the limited choices in high school, the varied selections in college, and the hordes of them all in the last decade. And before I realize it, I’m already thirty. Actually, the realization has not yet hit me hard (should it?). I look at my shelves and wonder at the space that I could have emptied had I not been a reader. But no, I’m happy to be a reader. I selected my list of greatest books based on my Goodreads ratings and on how important they are to me at multiple points in my life. If you are a keen reader of my blog, I think you will have a pretty good idea on what most of these books are. …