Wednesday, January 8, 2014

And Now, A Literacy Moment...

Brought to you by the sponsors of Mark Twain Literacy Consortium...because after all, "a man who chooses not to read is no better than one who can't."

First day back to school/work after ten+ days off.  Urgh.  You all know how that is, right?  Meh.

So let's talk about books today, then.  On these long breaks, I never read as much as I think I will...and I'm not sure why that is.  Well, okay, I'm fairly sure I know why, and it includes doing something in the kitchen, working on something for the Winery or school, playing those damn free 1-hour demo Hidden Object games at, doing logic puzzles, or watching The Walking Dead or Downton Abbey or Sherlock.

Ugh.  How did you guys do that?  Get me to confess all that, eh?

Anyway, I read:

Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman.  I have read at least three other books by this author, which, for me, is the only criteria needed to be placed on my Favorite Authors List.  The book seemed to fit the bill at this current point in my life - short and a quick read.  Gaiman is rather famous for his quirky, offbeat, and often dark storytelling - and Ocean delivered in that sense.  But, I dunno, it missed the mark for me.  Lots of unanswered questions about the characters, I think.  When I close a book and wonder Who the hell were those people?, that's usually a not good thing...especially if it's about one of the major characters.

Length might have been the issue here.  But, Gaiman has written other wonderful novels in as short of a space, so maybe that's not it at all.  You'll all have to read it and let me know what you think.

And currently, I'm reading:

The Silmarillion by JRR Tolkien.  Okay, so I'm on my, like, sixth time reading it.  This book contains Tolkien's often fragmented notes about the history of Middle-earth.  We're talking the ancient history of Middle-earth...long before Frodo, Aragorn, or even Gandalf entered the picture.  Want to know where Sauron came from?  Who the heck the Lady Luthien is that Aragorn sings about in the movie?  How old Galadriel really is?  That before there was the One Ring, there were the Silmarils?

Yeah, I'm a nerd.  Reading this really hits home just how brilliant Tolkien really was, and as much as I love JK Rowling, she only was able to do a fraction of what Tolkien did.

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