Literary Liaisons, On the Shelf

On The Shelf- Moon Palace

Have you ever been fifty pages into a novel an thought to yourself “man this book is exquisitely written…….and I kind of hate it”? That’s where I found myself while reading Paul Auster’s Moon Palace, which is the subject of this edition of On The Shelf. Now, I’m normally a big fan of Paul Auster. The only reason you won’t find multiple copies of The New York Trilogy and Travels in the Scriptorium on my bookshelf is that every time I buy a copy of one of those books I immediately lend it out to a friend and never see…

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In Stores Now, Literary Liaisons

In Stores Now-The Feed

As any regular follower of this blog knows I am an avid admirer of both high concept science fiction and post-apocalyptic literature. In The Feed, Nick Clark Windo’s debut novel, I hoped I might find myself a new favorite in these genres that I would enjoy revisiting for years to come. Unfortunately, all I found myself was disappointed. While The Feed is by no means a bad read it is possessed of several flaws that keep it from elevating itself into that can’t miss category of new releases. Let’s start with the plot. The entire world is connected via a…

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A Writer's Tale, Literary Liaisons

A Writer’s Tale-Jack Kerouac

Most of my entries here in A Writer’s Tale have a bit of quirkiness about them, if not downright wackiness. But today’s installment is a far more somber affair. It involves a man who is widely held as the greatest American author of his generation, a suspicious death, and a cover-up. Jack Kerouac was sometimes called the “King of the Beatniks”. A complicated fellow he was both anti-communist and a pot enthusiast, staunchly Catholic but heavily associated with the homosexual scene of the time. Living in New York City he fell in with Allen Ginsberg and William Burroughs. These three…

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Literary Liaisons, Wily Wordplay

Wily Wordplay- On War

With the specter of war hanging over the Korean Penninsula, it seemed appropriate to share some quotes that are pertinent to the decisions that will need to be made in the months to come. I do not agree with every sentiment expressed here but found these all worthy of discussion. 1.”The supreme art of war is to subdue the enemy without fighting.” -Sun Tzu 2. “War does not determine who is right – only who is left.” -Bertrand Russell 3. “All war is a symptom of man’s failure as a thinking animal.” ― John Steinbeck 4. “I am tired and…

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A Writer's Tale, Literary Liaisons

A Writer’s Tale-Jonathon Swift

With it being April Fool’s Day today, I thought I would take this edition of A Writer’s Tale to feature one of the greatest April Fool’s pranks of all time. Our featured author today is that most famous English-Irish satirist Jonathon Swift, most known for his work Travels into Several Remote Nations of the World. In Four Parts. By Lemuel Gulliver, First a Surgeon, and then a Captain of Several Ships or as it is more commonly called Gulliver’s Travels. But Swift was no one-hit wonder. He is widely recognized as one of the greatest English language satirists who ever…

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Literary Liaisons, Wily Wordplay

Wily Wordplay- On Life

Life is Hard. Here are some quotes about it. 1.“Don’t cry because it’s over, smile because it happened.” ― Dr. Seuss 2.“Life isn’t about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself.” ― George Bernard Shaw 3.“The fear of death follows from the fear of life. A man who lives fully is prepared to die at any time.” ― Mark Twain 4.“Anyone who lives within their means suffers from a lack of imagination.”― Oscar Wilde 5.“You get what anybody gets – you get a lifetime.” ― Neil Gaiman, The Sandman, Vol. 1: Preludes and Nocturnes 6.“It is not the length of…

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A Writer's Tale, Literary Liaisons

A Writer’s Tale- Arthur Conan Doyle

You probably remember Sir Arthur Conan Doyle from one of the previous installments of this series, where he featured prominently on a certain cricket team of some infamy. Or perhaps you simply know him as the creator of the most famous detective in all the world (sorry Hercule). Either way, I would wager that you do not know him from the strange tale I am about to tell. The period after the first world war was a strange one for many people. The world became a place caught between two eras; the Victorian and the modern. For Doyle, who had…

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Literary Liaisons, Wily Wordplay

Wily Wordplay- On Time

Time is both an immutable universal constant and a completely arbitrary human construct. To celebrate this paradox I thought I would share with you some of my favorite quotes about Time. 1.“I wish it need not have happened in my time,” said Frodo. “So do I,” said Gandalf, “and so do all who live to see such times. But that is not for them to decide. All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given us.” ― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Fellowship of the Ring 2.“Time is a game played beautifully by children.” ― Heraclitus, Fragments 3.“The…

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In Stores Now, Literary Liaisons

In Stores Now- Artemis

I’m not sure if it’s because of some subconscious effort on my part to reassure myself as I prepare to release my own sophomore manuscript but I seem to be making a habit out of using this section of the blog to review the second outings of author’s whose first outings were personal favorites of mine. This month I picked up Andy Weir’s new novel Artemis (coincidentally the name of a character in my next book). If Weir’s name sounds familiar its because is initial outing The Martian was an international bestseller and was adapted into an Oscar-nominated film. This…

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A Writer's Tale, Literary Liaisons

A Writer’s Tale-Stieg Larsson’s Guerrillas

The name Stieg Larsson is one you may not be familiar with. The Swedish author of the Girl with the Dragon Tattoo died before his novels became a global sensation, but that doesn’t mean he didn’t experience some wild things in his life. One of the main characters in Larsson’s Millennium trilogy is a journalist for a left-wing news organization. This is very much a reflection of Larsson’s own exploits as a young man. Back in 1977, when he was just twenty-two years of age, Larsson traveled to Ethiopia under the cover of being a journalist. What his employer and…

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