Author: George Orwell
Finished: October 30
Publisher: Signet Classics
Publish Year: 1950
A futuristic tale of what the world is like in 1984 with Big Brother watching and people getting arrested for just thinking something bad and/or going against Big Brother.
After finishing it made me very glad that I was not born in the 1984 represented in this book, where children were often taken from their parents and raised in a group home to think pure and live a pure and unquestioning lifestyle to a very extreme sense.
The idea that “Big Brother” decides that books and newspapers need to be changed based their beliefs seems so unreal but very futuristic. That with a click of a button history changes to the point where people don’t even remember what day it is or what even really happened in the history books before they were changed. Dictionaries were wittled down to a handful of words that could be used to describe everything, therefore elimitating all elements of impure thoughts and deeds from peoples minds because there is just no word for it.
It’s always interesting reading futuristic stories and seeing how different the world really is. In movie form, this would be 2001: A Space Odyssey. While “newspeak” now isn’t how Orwell describes, we still have our own form. Like one review on Amazon says, we have our own version of shorthand with texting abreviations like LOL, L8R, etc. It is nearly the same thing and transforming kids using it, changing their form of dictionary into one that is not recognizable to the older generations.
Title: Water for Elephants
Author: Sara Gruen
Finished: October 30
Publisher: Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill
Publish Year: 2006
What led you to pick up this book? There has been a lot of hype it seems and a lot of people talking about it. I figured it was about time to pick it up. Plus the title is extra intriguing.
Plot summary: Jacob, on his track to becoming a veterinarian and join his father’s practice, when tragedy strikes his family, leaving him alone to pick up the pieces. In a moment of panic, Jacob runs away and ends up joining the circus as the vet, falling in love with a performer and the animals. But, behind the scenes is nothing like he expected and soon Jacob is in the midst of chaos, trying to figure out what he really wants and what he should do, though fearful of the consequences.
What did you like most about the book? I thought it was amazing, pretty much everything. The description and storyline go hand in hand and not once was I unsure of what I was shown. Even the most graphic scenes were done tastefully and careful, unoffensive.
What did you think of the ending? Perfect ending. Not too rushed or forced. Even from the beginning you could see where the story was going and that there would be no real mystery of secret but just this dramatic piece of work that leads you through a poignant time in one mans life.
Do you recommend this book? If you use a rating system, what’s your rating? I’d give it 5 stars and recommend it to anyone. Easy read as well.
Should Be Reading
Jules’ Book Reviews
Mariel suggested this week’s question.
Are you a spine breaker? Or a dog-earer? Do you expect to keep your books in pristine condition even after you have read them? Does watching other readers bend the cover all the way round make you flinch or squeal in pain?
Don’t forget to leave a link to your actual response (so people don’t have to go searching for it) in the comments—or if you prefer, leave your answers in the comments themselves!
I’m pretty good about keeping my books in great shape, especially classics or those that are bought brand new or have some sort of special meaning. Recently I have bought or traded older and used books so they already have their share of wear. On paperbacks, I don’t care much for a bend in the spine, and I used to dog-ear pages but have since stopped because if they outside can’t be pretty then I want the inside to be. I have purchased a number of bookmarks which are more effective and less likely for the page to get lost. What other people do with their books is their choice. I’m not here to judge. :)
I don’t expect my books to stay new. That’s the great part, is the more worn they look the more you know they are loved and read. Some I find are nearly indestructible, others are fragile and even starting to fall apart. A large quantity of books I own are easily replaceable if something was to happen, but even seeing them bent and bruised makes me think they’ve lived a good life.