Saturday, July 30, 2016

Bye bye PC - NOVA this week (July 30, 2016)

Observations from my weekly wanderings, usually in Northern Virginia (NOVA).

After more than 25 years of frustration with PCs, I’ve finally made the switch and NOVA this week is coming to you via my shiny new iMAC. I’m not going to say I absolutely love it yet – still getting used to the different buttonology. But, I’m pretty sure I won’t miss having processes slow down after a few months use, and I’m pretty sure I won’t miss Microsoft changing the operating system every couple years, and I’m pretty sure I won’t miss the irreparable hard drive crashing, and on, and on, and on.

Why did I wait 25 years? I'm Cheap. But I finally realized PCs aren’t cheaper if you replace them every 2-3 years. Now, I know the jury is still out. My iMAC hasn’t gone the distance yet and proven it’s worth the premium. But if everyone whom I know, who has made the switch is right – I should still be using this machine 4, or 5, or 6 years from now. Stay tuned.

The packaging is even more user friendly.

The Classics Club – July Meme: Question #43

A meme reboot from February 2015Pick a book published since 2000 and say why you think it will be considered as a “classic” in the future.

I don’t think I answered this the first time, so...

Reading mostly classics, I don’t read many published since 2000 – exactly one in fact in the first 70 of 100. And then of course, it’s already considered a classic. So it’s the obvious choice, but a worthy one regardless.

Atonement by Ian McEwan. The “why?” is simple. It’s superbly written, with a compelling theme, and believable characters.

Now that I’ve been faithful to the precise rules of this meme, I’m going to cheat a little and mention one other that comes close: American Pastoral by Philip Roth, published 1997.

Monday, July 25, 2016

Recap of Novels 61-70

Average rating of novels 61-70 – 3.8 out of 5 stars

Recap of Novels 61-70

61. ★★★½ The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie by Muriel Spark
62. ★★★½ A Farewell to Arms by Ernest Hemingway
63. ★★★★ American Pastoral by Philip Roth
64. ★★★ A Bend in the River by V.S. Naipaul
65. ★★ Money by Martin Amis
66. ★★★★ The Sheltering Sky by Paul Bowles
67. ★★★★ Tom Jones by Henry Fielding
68. ★★★★½ Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
69. ★★★★ War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy
70. ★★★★★ The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas

Favorite: The Count of Monte Cristo

Least Favorite: Money

Best Hero/Heroine: Princess Mary Bolkonskaya from War and Peace – she isn’t really heroic in the traditional sense, but she is the best person in any of these tales, and hence my choice.

Most Villainous: Danglars from The Count of Monte Cristo

Most interesting/Complex character: The Count of Monte Cristo aka Edmonde Dantes. Close second: a different count, from a different book, Count Pierre Bezukhov from War and Peace

Best Quotation:
…for the wicked are not so easily disposed of, for God seems to have them under his special watch-care to make of them instruments of his vengeance.  ~ The Count of Monte Cristo

Best Subtitle: Money: A Suicide Note  Opposite of a subtitle, Tom Jones is not the actual title of Fielding's novel, just a common shortened version of the full title: The Adventures of Tom Jones, a Foundling

Best film adaptation: I’m going to go out on a limb and say the 1963 rendition of Tom Jones (though I have not yet watched it). It won four Academy Awards, including Best Picture, and was nominated for 6 more.

Worst film adaptation: 2002 version of The Count of Monte Cristo