Mothwing
07 November 2014 @ 08:27 pm
Books Round-up: November 1  
92.

Hornby, Nick: Funny Girl
The lives and exploits of comedy wireless and TV writers in the sixties. This part of the book I adored- the characters were believable and lovable, the plot funny and engaging. I was not too keen on their last hurrah in the 2000ies, but I can see the merits of this ending.

91.

London, Jack: White Fang
Doesn't everybody want to be Weedon Scott? I remember reading this when I was around ten and disliking it because there were hardly any female characters who interacted with White Fang, while my experience with my household and raising dogs was that most of the work was done by my mother-the-hunter and grandmother, though that was mostly due to the fact that my granddad, also a hunter, was a disabled WWII veteran.
I love White Fang and the dignity Jack London lends to his animal characters, though White Fang's body count is a bit worrying. I'm also not convinced that a dog as badly mistreated as White Fang would recover so quickly, but who can resist this scene:
"What of his joy, the great love in him, ever surging and struggling to express itself, succeeding in finding a new mode of expression. He suddenly thrust his head forward and nudged his way in between the master’s arm and body."
Awwww.

90.

Katja Schwarz, Katja; Trost, Rainer: Kinder Und Jugendliche Mit Autismus-Spektrum-Storung: Neue Wege Durch Die Schule
A lot of the content of this book weren't really news, but it was an interesting overview of the more specific needs of children with Asperger's. I'm very pleased to note that a lot of the things mentioned as helpful in this book are things that I already do, since I consider clear language and structure to be something that most students find very beneficial.
Other things (replacing oral with written assignments, for example) I found less helpful for my subject (languages - you do have to talk sometimes, and the kids with Asperger's I teach right now hate writing and love speaking (it's the language they speak on Star Trek!) or don't mind it).
Still, I was very glad to be reminded of the basics again and be able to recheck whether I was still sticking to things that are helpful for students with this symptom and that make my classes safe for them.

89.

Kaling, Mindy: Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me?
As someone who neither watches SNL nor The Office it surprised me how much I still enjoyed this biography.

88.

Frau Freitag, Frl. Krise: Der Altmann ist tot
This was a very slow crime novel in which two teachers who usually work at a school in a multicultural and "difficult" part of Berlin solve the murder of a sleazy colleague of theirs. They are helped by former students, friends, boyfriends, and whole lot of "coincidences" that make this book very hard to buy.
As usual, they get the language students use spot on and it is funny, but especially during their various dress-up games they're less convincing than The Three Investigators (which might be a German thing? Does any one else remember the three investigators and their disguise shenanigans...?). I dis not buy it. Their attempts at sleuthing are fumbled and its a miracle they don't get in more trouble than they do, the resolution is foreseeable.
They also treat a close friend ("Onkel Ali") pretty exploitatively, using him as bait for one of their plots and then teaching him how to "be Turkish" to get rid a suspects unwanted romantic advances, and since they're middle-class Germans with German ancestors this seems... off.


87.

Sprenger, Marilee: Damit was hängen bleibt
Nothing entirely new in these seven steps for more effective learning, and the examples don't really fit my subjects and generally always require more prep-time than I have for any classroom I teach in, but the general gist is helpful and presented in a motivating way. I can't see any of this implemented any time soon, though, as long as everything in our work depends entirely on every person's individual intrinsic motivation to do better than before and does not come with regular team meetings - at least at my school. Innovating alone surely isn't effective.

86.

Maitland, Karen: The Vanishing Witch
Was alright. I didn't really get that attached to the characters living in the city, but did feel for the rebels.

85.

Carey, M. R.: The Girl With All the Gifts
The zombie apocalypse from the point of view of a gifted pre-teen. Who could resist! The characters all make sense and are complex and compassionately portrayed, with their flaws and motivations.
The resolution of the book was fitting with the premise of the book, but really depressing. As always in a zombie apocalypse setting it isn't advisable to get too attached to the characters, but as always, I did, anyway.
Also, to the end, I wasn't sure who to root for, whose new beginning to hope for in this end of the world.

84.

Mats; Bergmark Elfgren, Sara: Feuer
I'm a hopelessly devoted fan. Developed female teenage characters with believable flaws and interactions and insecurities and strength and growth who continue to be badass. And have magic. And save the world. While struggling with school and parents.Read more... )

83.

Strandberg, Mats; Bergmark Elfgren, Sara: Schlüssel
Back in Engelsfors, the remaining Circle witches are still busy trying to stop the apocalypse. Can they trust the strange forces trying to protect them? What about the Council, can they be trusted after all when they offer help? It is engaging enough for me to keep reading so as to finish it in two sittings and is still as character-driven as the first two instalments.Read more... )
 
 
Current Location: Germany, Bremen
Current Mood: okay
 
 
Mothwing
31 October 2014 @ 08:02 pm
Books round-up: October  
82.

Heppermann, Christine: Poisoned Apples: Poems for You, My Pretty
Feminist fairy tale poetry, a really enjoyable combination. The subjects often address issues of body image and self-worth as well as eating disorders, sometimes a little unsubtle, often times enjoyable through the lens of fairy tales. Some experiences are too US America specific to resonate with me, others seem truly universal.

81.

Abedi, Isabel: Isola
Only read this book if its in your library, or don't, because you already know it and the cardboard characters never really come to life.Read more... )

80.

Rothfuss, Patrick: The Slow Regard of Silent Things
More later, I have to reread this a couple of times to savour it. For now: The only thing that spoiled my reading experience of this beautiful volume was the author's constant need to apologise for this story which isn't run-off-the-mill and normal. This is incredible to me, and wrong - more of an apology would be needed for a story that is yet again the same as any other story.
This wasn't, and it was beautiful. I could have done without the frame story of Auri waiting for Kvothe, as I'd have loved to hear more about her time before the beginning of the plot of the Kingkiller Chronicle and her relationship with the masters. As it is, it remains a charming and saddening insight into her wonderous world in the belly of the university.

79.

Snicket, Lemony: Shouldn't You be in School?
I really enjoy this new series, though not as much as I did the ASoUE.

78.

Jung, Marius: Singen können die alle!: Handbuch für Negerfreunde
Sometimes cynical, sometimes funny account of racism in Germany by a black comedian. He talks about his youth growing up as the black child of white middle class parents, his experiences as an actor in a country that still doesn't really realise not all of its inhabitants are whitee and white wannabe saviours.
I don't agree with the fact that political correctness is a bad thing, though I agree that it should not be the only underlying reason for changing one's behaviour.

77.

Harris, Joanne: Gospel of Loki
I like this modern version of the Lokabrenna, which works as a prequel to Runemarks, though some details are different. The contemporary phrases that crop up annoyed me vaguely to the and I didn't see their point. They didn't endear the characters to me, if that was the idea.
Loki is as entertaining and human and as a prequel he couldn't have been much different, though I'd really like to see a Loki that does not suffer from this civilising softening. It makes us understand the characters as humans, but in their original context they were different, revered as forces of nature and arbiters of life a and death. they were also human, of course, but they were still fundamentally different. The difference seems to have home lost and turns gods into powerful mortals, superheroes. In the words of the novel, named and tamed.

76.

Strandberg, Mats; Bergmark Elfgren, Sara: Zirkel
This is the first book in a long, looong time that I found that is:
1.) centred more or less exclusively on female teenaged characters,
2.) whose main plot isn't a love plot,
3.) who don't get raped.
Read more... )

75.

Elsberg, Marc: Zero
The book seems more hurried and breathless than
his last one and less convincing. It is still an entertainingly fast-paced thriller, but the plot has its holes. Especially the random underground chases in Vienna and New York were too much, and while the concerns it raises about tech and choice are valid, it doesn't always do that in a very subtle way. I am also not overly keen on the ableism and the way neuroatypical people are portrayed here.

74.

Carey, Jaqueline: Kushiel's Dart
I really enjoyed this book, and the world, and the fact that there was not as much slut-shaming and whorephobia as might have been expected in a book in which the main protagonist is a prostitute. The world's religious system is believable and interesting and the characters lovable. I don't recall it passing the Bechdel test, but there are several strong female characters and some of them are queer.
I did not like that there are no romantic relationships between women, hardly any sadistic or dominant women, no sadistic/dominant women who aren't evil, no romantic relationships that aren't heterosexual. One toe outside the box and then straight back in

73.

Boie, Kirsten: Ringel, Rangel, Rosen
Read more... )

72.

Beagle, Peter S.; Gillis, Peter; De Liz, Renae; Dillon, Ray: The Last Unicorn
I have to admit that I've only read the book two or three times and have seen the movie version so often that I have no memory of how well the book version translates into the movie, which is one of my favourites. So I was not so much worried about the book as I was about my memories of the movie, but it translates, as I suppose this book does into all possible media. The short passages of text seem well-chosen, although as I mentioned I don't remember the text well-enough to judge, but my gut says they are.
The artwork is stunningly beautiful and I could stare at some of those panels for hours. The one thing that bugged me was that Schmendrick and Molly have undergone a serious makeover and the way the human unicorn looks is scary because she is so thin.

71.

Brosgol, Vera: Anya's Ghost
I heard from this via Graphic Novels 4 Girls and really liked it. Anya and the difficulties she faces as a Russian immigrant ring true, although it is strange to me that she doesn't speak Russian at home, though I do understand that would be inconvenient for story purposes. I'd have liked seeing more interactions between Siobhan and Anya, but I can see that it wouldn't have fit into this very compact tale.
I was also positively surprised by this graphic novel as a graphic novel - it's good to see that there are diverse and positive role-models for younger girls at least, even though I find it hard to see the same applying to the "mature" end of this genre, which features gratuitous boob and gore panels more than truly mature topics.

70.

Green, John: Looking for Alaska
The over-the-top love that my students have for this book shows me that I'm probably missing out. But I just don't understand it. I see very interchangeable, uninteresting characters involved in things that I, as a teenager, would have had no interest or part in in their situation because it seems designed to make things worse for them (no matter how bored or depressed, taking up drinking and smoking was never that attractive to me). Though the signs of characters' mental health issues are there in places, they don't ring true to me. The romance plot is superficial and only shows once more how mundanely boring "Pudge" is.

69.

König, Tim: Ich bin ein Kunde, holt mich hier raus
I'm so embarrassed to have read that, even though I did get the audiobook at a very reduced price. It's really bad.
Read more... )

68.

Pratchett, Terry: Dragons at Crumbling Castle.
Adorable short stories presented in a way that I can see children liking as much as adult fans.
 
 
Current Location: Germany, Bremen
Current Mood: happy
 
 
Mothwing
31 August 2014 @ 11:30 pm
Books round-up: August  
52.

Frost, Toby: Space Captain Smith
It was... overall ok, really. You will most likely enjoy this book if you already like action comedies and using the words "romp" and "tongue in cheek". I don't, really, so I didn't. The British Space Empire parts were a fun premise, but the cardboard characters didn't deliver, for me. Also, I didn't get all the pop culture references, which I didn't think mattered that much, though. I don't think that pop culture references alone don't necessarily make things funny. The humour also wasn't always right for me- I don't think "does my butt look big in this?" is always funny, for one.
I don't like books that are trying hard to be funny, and this one did. The unrealistic action scenes were funny, but too over-the-top, some of the main character's convictions on being right about things like the inferiority of female characters and entities or their role weren't dealt with as funnily as the author may have intended. Complex characters this book doesn't have, but I still found myself caring about them enough to finish the book.

51.

Healy, Christopher: The Hero's Guide to Storming the Castle.
Crocky and I were reading this together and liked the unexpectedly complex characters, especially Briar was a pleasant surprise. The mixture between very PG-friendly lack of graphic detail and the violence getting stronger was a bit strange, because it is not likely that everybody survived the violence they encountered, but we aren't shown any of the dead bodies and there are no described corpses or dead bodies, so there's that. The various love stories bumble along, but they stay interesting.

50.

Gier, Kerstin: Silber: Das Zweite Buch der Träume.
Crocky and I listened to thsi together, and did finish it, but it was extremely boring, and the heroine suffers from loss of intelligence ever since she got together with her equally boring boyfriend.
My favourite example is the part in the book in whcih she believes someone to be in grave danger and it would be sensible for her to go and warn someone, at least the next day, but she completely forgets about it for two chapters because her boyfriend shows up. Her

49.

Gier, Kerstin: Silber: Das Erste Buch der Träume.
This book read like the premise for a very boring, very bad teenage het-romance story written by somebody who can write well but who can't write interesting characters. It was entertaining, Kerstin Gier certainly can write and knows her teenagers, but there are a lot of flaws. The short version: the way she is Not Like All Those Other Girls while not only being Exactly Like Those Other Girls, and also being One Of The Guys while berating other girls to backstab other girls. Also, all the male characters are assholes and don't treat her with the respect they'd give one of their own group.
Read more... )

48.

Abdel-Fattah, Randa: Does My Head Look Big In This?
This novel detailing a "hyphenated Australian" teenager's experiences while wearing the hijab full time and her life in general offered me an interesting insight into multi-cultural Australia in the early 2000ies. I don't know much about this topic and the stories I'd heard before mostly detailed how horrid everything is for non-Anglo immigrants and especially for indigenous people.
Refreshingly, the author writes believable teenage girls that differ from each other in more than just one describing adjective (the NERDY one, the RELIGIOUS one, etc.). Many authors who write about teenagers can learn a LOT from this book, especially most of the insipid Fantasy romance types whose characters fall into this category.

47.

Healy, Christopher: The Hero's Guide to Saving Your Kingdom.
This fairytale retelling mash-up of the stories of several Princes Charming won't change middle grade literature, but it's fun, will most likely be enjoyed by some the (rather younger) target demographic, and had us chuckling.
Read more... )
 
 
Mothwing
30 June 2014 @ 11:08 pm
Books round-up: June  
41.

Giles, Lamar: Fake ID.
I really love that there are more YA books around with lead characters who aren't all white, but this one still left things to be desired for me.
It was a bit difficult to see past the sexy-lamp-female characters whose main motivation is often looking good for the guys. The main character also has the issue that he's said to have certain traits and doesn't really show them, and the big reveal of the main twist also fell a bit flat.

40.

de la Pena, Matt: The Living
There none of the two female characters pass the sexy lamp test. Some of the things that happen are also a tad too convenient and the book reads as though it really wants to be an action movie. Still, I read it while wandering around in Munich, and it works. I am looking forward to the sequel, hoping that the female characters in the book will also get their chance to shine.
It's really refreshing to see a main character who is not white and whose background informs his character and many of his decisions without the entire story being about his race. He's also not the only PoC in the novel, there are a diverse cast.

39.

McKinley, Robin: Beauty.
I like McKinley's world, and her heroines. I did not like that "beauty" really must end up beautiful because there can't be any non-beautiful heroines anywhere ever. I also didn't like the invisible servants, or the continued proposing, even though that, of course, is there also in the original.

38.

McKinley, Robin: The Hero and the Crown.
I should have read this book when I was a lot younger, I would have really loved it. I love that the heroine has to work to get where she wants, and I was happy to revisit the world of The Blue Sword.

37.

Lo, Malinda: Ash.
What drew my interest was the beautiful cover and the heterocentric pearl-clutching I'd seen over this online over bisexual Cinderella. It's as though some people were shaken down to their fundamental because this wasn't the "Original" fairy tale. Given the fact that fairy tales are an oral tradition and versions tend to vary wildly this is a pretty strange outlook, and it got odder. Apparently even today Disney's Cinderella is many people's romantic dream. Well, good for them, they've got their billion-dollar-franchise, and now those whom Cinderella doesn't fit have this book.
I liked the beautiful style, the bisexual characters, that same-sex couples exist, that it has strong female characters and even occasionally people who communicate. I enjoyed what the author does with the fairy world, the dreaded love triangle, the fact that there are characters who take the initiative and have plans.
I didn't like the plot holes and moments in which characters went off the rails and acted in unexplained and plainly odd ways that didn't seem in keeping with traits established earlier.
 
 
Mothwing
27 December 2011 @ 04:42 pm
Bookchallenge round-up  
I can't seem to get the hang of keeping track of these challenges. Since my last entry was once again in May I can't remember what I read this year, especially the ones that I borrowed from the school library, but these are the ones that I could either remember or could piece together from my Amazon account. HTML

I left out re-reads if I read them more than once this year and some books by Terry Pratchett, and as always everything I read for school. 

25-52 )
 
 
Mothwing
04 February 2011 @ 02:13 pm
2011 Book challenge II  
14.

Myth Directions, by Robert Asprin.
Tanda wants to go shopping for a birthday present for Aahz and decides that the incredibly ugly civil-war-preventing war game trophy on the odd planet of Jahk is the best choice. Needless to say stealing this piece is not as easy as it sounds and they soon find themselves in the midst of the war game preventing said civil war. 
Another for the train-book pile. Ok read, not terribly great in terms of consistent characterisation, and dear god, the fatphobia and misogyny. Still funny enough to get through, and every Fantasy book that manages to get around an epic battle in the end deserves a cookie.


13.

Myth-conceptions, by Robert Asprin.
Court magician sounds like a cushy job and Aahz forces Skeeve to try out for the job, which he promptly gets. Little do either of them know that an army is heading their way and they're the kingdom's first line of defence.
I have serious trouble with the unlikely character development of the main character, but I do like that this does not have an epic final battle and I thoroughly enjoyed reading how they find a way around fighting. Well done.
 
12.

Another Fine Myth, by Robert Asprin.
Magical apprentice and wannabe thief Skeeve is impressed when his master summons a demon, the more so when said master is killed and the demon introduces himself as Aahz, dimension traveller and his master's co-worker. Together they travel through various dimension to find his master's murderer.
Very funny, though it's clear that this series comes from the late seventies. I can't stand how Tanda and other female characters are treated, but that was only to be expected.

11.

The Long, Dark Teatime of the Soul, by Douglas Adams.
A story about  holistic detective Dirk Gently, norse gods, and man-eating fridges.
Humorous, but dear god, eighties gender-based humour is really not my thing. Also remind me why that poor cleaning lady is working for this person, again. 

10.

America - The Book, by Jon Stewart, Ben Karlin and David Javerbaum.
Another humorous history, this time of America. Very entertaining and critical account of American history.

9.

A Wrinkle in Time, by Madeleine L'Engle.
How did I miss this? It has an unattractive female character! Who gets into fights! And wears braces! And glasses! And who is not an academic overachiever, either! Awesome. It reads a bit like a mix of The Demon Headmaster, and A Series of Unfortunate Events.

8.

The Name of the Wind, by Patrock Rothfuss.
First instalment in the Kingkiller chronicles though we don't know which king that was yet. The account of the young life of Kvothe, trouper, street urchin, student, arcanist and subsequent inkeeper as narrated by himself.
I re-read this again and am re-reading it with Crocky, only counting it once. In spite of its gloominess I very much enjoy the read and still love the language of the author. The audiobook is terrible, however.
7.

Reaper Man, by Terry Pratchett.
The Auditors of Reality decide that Death has developed too much of a personality and send him to retire, during his absence life force builds up and as he comes to term with his newly acquired life, so do other things because death effectively stops.
I hadn't read this one in a while and I must say that once more, I rather enjoy reading my electronic reading experience on the Oyo, though it doesn't beat real books. 

6.

How to Speak Dragonese, by Cressida Cowell.
During another pirate training lesson Hiccup, fishlegs and Bog Burgler heir Camicazi are abducted by the Romans
Obviously I'm a big fan of Camicazi and I couldn't wait to read this with Crocky.

5.

How to be a Pirate, by Cressida Cowell.
During pirate training lesson Hiccup encounters Alvin the Poor but Honest Farmer who is anything but and successfully resists the temptation that a great big treasure offers.
Re-reading the series with Crocky and I remember why I love it so much.

4.
An Utterly Impartial History of Britain, by John O'Farrel
Very entertaining history of Britain that still informs, much like the Horrible Histories. Can't wait to somehow use this in class.
 
3.
Valor's Trial, by Tanya Huff.
GySgt Torin Kerr fights her way out of an underground POW camp and has to cooperate with the enemy to do so.
I've come to rather enjoy this series, it makes good train reading, even though I still shake my head at her Star Trek idea of what's universal and continue to be disappointed at the lack in progress in robotics this future has (why do living soldiers have to go everywhere? Why don't they ever send recon drones or whatever?). What's also fun: look at the cover of this book, how long d'you think her hair is? She's supposed to have a crew cut in the books, but GOD FORBID anyone female has short hair on book covers, though I suppose that for whoever drew this this is what "short" hair would look like on a woman.
 
 
Current Mood: busy
 
 
Mothwing
20 June 2008 @ 01:21 pm
50 book challenge  
38.

A Series of Unfortunate Events - The End, by Daniel Handler.
I am still not sure what to make of this ending. There seem to be some loose ends, but I daresay that it's possible to assemble clues from the series to fill in the blanks. I don't really know what to make of the dilemma that the last book's end presented me with, though, and I like that. It seems that the series itself leaves the heroes in this grey zone between heroes and villains, and that is a really awesome thing to do at the end of a series for young readers. I also loved learning more about Count Olaf's backstory, curiously enough.

37.

A Series of Unfortunate Events - The Penultimate Peril, by Daniel Handler.
Another better novel. It's awesome to finally meet the sister of the fictional author of the story. The added information on the main plot were really worth the read, although I had a hard time justifying the actions of the children towards the end of the series. It seems very hard to do, and even though I feel that the plot means to make them remain in the roles of heroes, their actions rather show that they have become, in fact, villains. I'm really curious how the last book deals with that.

36.

A Series of Unfortunate Events - The Grim Grotto, by Daniel Handler.
Another great instalment that was fun reading. Especially the introduction of yet another grey zone between heroes and villain made this book really awesome for me.

35.

A Series of Unfortunate Events - The Slippery Slope, by Daniel Handler.
I loved this one, really loved. The way the romance sub-plot is not played out as something of utmost importance, finding out about V.F.D, the continued use of the Swinburne-quote - I loved it. Finally, the overall plot has gathered some momentum, and the style continues to stay awesome. I also stopped being aggravated by the lack of realism in the baby's behaviour.

34.

A Series of Unfortunate Events - The Carnivorous Carnival, by Daniel Handler.
This book was really interesting. It's slightly depressing that this is really the first one which is so thoroughly entertaining and quite suspenseful at times, although I couldn't say whether or not this wasn't already the case in the eighth book, which was out at the time and which I had to skip.

33.

A Series of Unfortunate Events - The Vile Village. by Daniel Handler.
Yay! Finally! Plot! The return of the useless guardian is even made bearable by that.

32.

A Series of Unfortunate Events - The Ersatz Elevator, by Daniel Handler.
This book had one of the most annoyingly unrealistic scenes of the entire bloody series - the baby climbing up the elevator using her teeth. No creative licence in the world can make that ok. Also, the reappearance of the one evil-and-one-incompetent-guardian-thing makes this boring. The glimpses of an underlying plot of the series makes it worth the read, though.

31.

A Series of Unfortunate Events - The Austere Academy, by Daniel Handler.
I really enjoyed reading about the Triplets, although the more blatant moments of children's literature and the resulting lack of realism and sense were annoying again. I liked that there seems to be plot on the horizon there somewhere. Can't wait.

30.

A Series of Unfortunate Events - The Miserable Mill, by Daniel Handler.
Yawn. Also, the less realistic things are getting annoying. I still enjoy the Snicket parts and the style, but the children's book literature moments get on my nerves.
 
 
Current Mood: awake
 
 
Mothwing
18 March 2008 @ 12:01 pm
Book challenge  
17.

The Red Badge of Courage, Stephen Crane.
Blegh. This is one of the coming-of-age stories we really can do without.

16.

Far from the Madding Crowd, Thomas Hardy.
I love this book. It is the second of Hardy's books I ever read, in a small cottage in the Brecon Beacons, and in spite of the prominence of the love plot, I always loved this book. Gabriel Oak is one of the most likeable characters I ever read about, and his and Bathshebas love plot one of the most interesting, too.
Why can't all couples in all love plots be like this? I liked it such a lot during my teenage years that I am worried that if I reread it now, it will be worse than it is in my head.

15.

Pompeii, Robert Harris.
Watch the manly, grieving widower battle the forces of bisexual promiscuity (although the terms are apparently interchangeable in this book) and see the world's first volcano with moral awareness who spares the innocent.
In spite of the fast-paced account of the final hours of the city this book does not live up to my expectations at all. This could have been so much better.
 
 
Mothwing
29 February 2008 @ 12:02 pm
Book challenge  
14.

Slam, by Nick Hornby.
So the drooling in front of the shelf with the hardcover version is finally over. I could not wait to get my hands on this one. So far (p.13), it's a really good read, not that I seriously had expected anything else. Nick Hornby is one of the few authors who really have never disappointed me. Even though there are recurring patterns, especially as far as the structure of his characters is concerned, his books remain very distinct, probably because the topics they deal with are so different.

13.

Imperium, Robert Harris.
An account of Cicero's life told by his slave - this biography actually existed, but was lost. It covers his life until he is elected Consul.
Even though the main focus of the story is obviously the political manoeuvres necessary to get him there, my favourite character will forever be the orator's wife Terentia. She is such an incredibly strong woman, and I admire her greatly. I will never forgive Cicero, the historical figure, nor the character in this book, for leaving her for a much younger girl late in life. Of course I can't know the circumstances and he probably did have his reasons, but I find it very hard to understand how anyone can want to leave this amazing woman.
Brushing up names of speeches and politicians as well as some of the affairs while reading this did not do any harm, either, considering that I had to translate parts of the very speeches he was writing in the book in my Latin class this week. It's a nice way of bringing the world back to life.

I really should read more historic novels, they are usually fun ways of reading an interpretation of times past, and looking up on whether they are historical correct is also good for jogging the memory. Which reminds me, I really need to check out the series by Rebecca Gablé that [livejournal.com profile] lordhellebore recommended.
 
 
Current Mood: chipper