The things that keep you awake…..

I had a friend growing up who always told me she did not believe in the concept of Hell perpetrated by Christian theology because she believed hell already existed here on Earth. Craig Russell jumps on this idea.

After reading The Devil Aspect by Craig Russell, I will be in line if they make a movie out of it. Be ready for a roller coaster ride through the minds of several different people. There are Easter eggs and teasers and clues throughout and by the time you get to the end, who cares if it is after dark and the hairs are standing up on the back of your neck?

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581 Reasons

Jane Leavy’s biography The Big Fella is 581 page a tour-de-force about the life of Babe Ruth. Don’t let the number of pages or size of the book scare you. Once you start reading, you won’t want to put it down and the hours fly by.

Ms. Leavy not only brings Ruth to life but the people and the world around him. Unlike most biographies, Ms. Leavy includes the stories of the people who are in the pictures and film clips who met him. Ms. Leavy also isn’t afraid to tackle the tough parts about his personal life.

When you read this book, it is as if Babe Ruth is walking right alongside you telling his story. Additionally, you experience the people that he came into contact with and how his legacy in many different forms continues to reverberate even until today.

Reading from the end.

Edward O. Wilson’s small work Genesis: The Deep Origin of Societies can be summed up nicely if you read from the last chapter to the beginning. Wilson argues that social interaction is related to the size of a species’ brain size.

I don’t know if I agree with this or not. Wilson provides a sketch of evolutionary biology, beginning with cells and ending with homo sapiens.

A nice, easy read for an introduction to evolution and biology.

Three Red Dots

On page 189 of Gerri Chanel’s work Saving Mona Lisa, there is a picture of an older man with a mustache standing next to a wooden container with three large dots on its’ side. Something in the man’s posture and the look on his face catches your eye. His left hand is placed gently on the wooden container. There is a proud smile on his face.

Almost 7 decades after this picture was taken, this unnamed gentleman holds his place in history as being one of the many people who watched over DaVinci’s Mona Lisa during her journey out of Paris before and after World War II.

Chanel provides an excellent overview of the journeys that were undertaken to protect the works of art that were in the Louvre before and after World War II. The many people who worked to make sure the treasures were safe and the people who lost their lives are highlighted in her work.

A must read.

These Shallow Graves

by Jennifer Donnelly

I was at a retirement party for a local teen librarian and this book was propped up in the display area.

I can be a sucker for a great New York story.

I love this story and it was a page turner from beginning to end. This video sums it up nicely:

Love simply is.

It took me a while to read Paulo Coelho’s The Witch of Portbello. The story is a murder mystery with mystical interweavings. The Witch asks the question: what truly is a witch? Is someone a witch because of another person or because they feel more of something than everyone else?

There are questions about identity, how we create identity, how we change our identity and our identity is different to each person we have in our lives. The main protagonist, Athena, means different things to different people. Athena inspires crowds who must be dispersed.

How do people see us?

Why be a traitor?

So maybe I’ve walked or driven over the location of the house where Benedict Arnold owned in New Haven, CT. Maybe I did the same of the house where he lived before New Haven. Why would people mark the location of a house of a man who is the most vilified of the American Revolution?

Why did Benedict Arnold become a traitor? History tends to gloss over this question. I had a client who was telling me about learning about Arnold in class. After they told me what he had been learning, I asked if they had discussed Arnold living in New Haven and what he did for the Continental Army before his betrayal?

Guess what answer I got?

Betrayal doesn’t happen overnight. Keep that in mind.

Read The Tragedy of Benedict Arnold by Joyce Lee Malcolm.