Monday, November 05, 2012

"What We Are Reading Now..."

We find ourselves living in an increasingly cynical age. The 19th Century was just as unpredicatable, but it was tempered with a hope and optimism much missed now. Here are some titles to immerse you in the exciting days of yesteryear.

With many of the biographies of Charles Dickens in the 500 to 1,000 page range, this is a brief but balanced look at the life of the 19th Century's most popular novelist. With a movie in the works featuring Ralph Fiennes as Dickens, The World of Charles Dickens makes excellent background reading. There is nothing wrong with this book that a proofreader wouldn't have helped.
Mr. Jefferson's Women traces the female relationships of Thomas Jefferson: Wives (his own and others), women he loved, women he owned. It reveals Jefferson as a much more human - and disturbing - figure. If you think political attacks and indiscretions are a modern phenomena, think again.
In 1872 the Mary Celeste was found drifting in the Atlantic Ocean. Beds had been slept in, food was on the table, and every aspect of shipboard life appeared normal, but every person who sailed on the ship was missing. In Ghost Ship, the author investigates every possible explanation as if it was a contemporary crime scene, keeping the reader in suspense until the last few pages.
The third and final volume in Morris' mammouth biography of Theodore Roosevelt, Colonel Roosevelt is a book you literally do not want to end. Covering TR's life from the end of his presidency to his death in 1919, Morris does much to humanize a personality that has become cliched in our minds. Roosevelt's integrity, humor, ego, and blunders all contribute to illuminate the rough and tumble sportsman whose wife admonished him with, "Theodore, I do wish you would do your bleeding in the bathroom. You're spoiling every rug in the house."

James@the library



Blogger Maria said...

I definitely want to read Ghost Ship after your description and the Jefferson book, too!

3:48 PM  

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