I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings – Review

I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou

Published in 1969

Pages: 290

Genre: Nonfiction, autobiography, African-American literature

“I hadn’t so much forgot as I couldn’t bring myself to remember.”

Most people wouldn’t choose to begin their autobiography by telling the story of a time they wet themselves in embarrassment, but Maya Angelou was not like most people. The anecdote that begins I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings sets the tone for the first in a series of autobiographies about her life. Deeply poetic and honest without restraint, Angelou writes with passion and conviction while letting us into the delicate truths of her childhood. Continue reading “I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings – Review”

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Sourcery – Review

Sourcery by Terry Pratchett

Published in 1988

Pages: 326

Genre: Fantasy, satire

“There was a man and he had eight sons.”

While this is an impressive feat in itself for any man and his libido, it is a terrible omen in Terry Pratchett’s Sourcery. The eighth son of an eighth son of a wizard is known as a sourcerer (the intentional misspelling is due to the fact that a sourcerer is literally a “source” of powerful magic) and the one central to this story is named Coin. In order to escape the anthropomorphic manifestation of Death shortly after Coin’s birth, his father inters himself in a magical staff and proceeds to take over Unseen University through his son. Such magic hasn’t been seen on the disc since the mage wars of old and only one non-magical wizard can put a stop to it. Continue reading “Sourcery – Review”

On the Subject of Condescension Toward Non-Native English Speakers

I have a difficult time sympathizing with those who belittle or degrade immigrants to the United States that speak English as their second language. It is important to remember that the U.S. does not have an official language; seriously, you can google it for yourself if you don’t believe me. The national animal of Scotland is the unicorn and as nonsensical as that may seem, both facts are true. So why is it that so many people born in the U.S. look down on those who don’t speak English well when it isn’t even the official language of the country?

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This image won’t be quite as cute by the time you finish reading.

Continue reading “On the Subject of Condescension Toward Non-Native English Speakers”

Love in the Time of Cholera – Review

El amor en los tiempos del cólera by Gabriel García Márquez

Published in Spanish in 1985, in English as Love in the Time of Cholera in 1988

Edith Grossman Translation

Pages: 348

Genre: Latin American literature, Colombian literature, romance

“It was inevitable: the scent of bitter almonds always reminded him of the fate of unrequited love.”

This first line’s sentiment is expressed as the inner monologue of Doctor Juvenal Urbino who, upon inspecting the dead body of a friend, introduces the two themes evident in the title of the book. Love in the Time of Cholera by Gabriel García Márquez is a story of infatuation that spans decades and explores the feeling in its many variations. Set in a Caribbean town over the course of 50 years, it is a tale of two people whose lives intertwine through the love held in their hearts. Continue reading “Love in the Time of Cholera – Review”