Tuesday, December 30, 2014

School wrap-up

I had a great opportunity to take a course called "The Heart's Desire" this semester and a course with an interesting title like that often has an interesting reading list like this. The 13 books we read in the class are below. The ones you should actually care about are highlighted. Notes attached where necessary.
  1. The Discerning Heart: Exploring the Christian Path by Wilkie Au and Noreen Cannon Au.
  2. Flow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience by Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi (*And yeah, I can pronounce that.)
  3. Words Made Flesh: Scripture, Psychology and Human Communication by Fran Ferder (*Really and truly excellent. The parts I read, that is. I don't have a lot of time for lengthy books at school, okay?)
  4. Your Sexual Self: Pathway to Authentic Intimacy by Fran Ferder and John Heagle
  5. Man's Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl
  6. Globalization, Spirituality, and Justice: Navigating the Path to Peace by Fr. Daniel G. Groody, CSC (*Groody is the boss and also this is an excellent book. Read it and weep [and then go do something with your life].)
  7. Addiction and Grace by Gerald May (*Surprisingly wonderful)
  8. Seeds of Contemplation by Thomas Merton (*They say it's so good... and maybe it is... if I ever actually read it I'll let ya know.)
  9. A Sacred Voice is Calling: Personal Vocation and Social Conscience by John Neafsey
  10. Let Your Life Speak: Listening for the Voice of Vocation by Parker J. Palmer (*Ew.)
  11. The Road Less Traveled: A New Psychology of Love, Traditional Values and Spiritual Growth by M. Scott Peck (*Ignore his bizarre 1960s sexism and just go with it.)
  12. Letters to a Young Poet by Ranier Maria Rilke
  13. Dreams and Spiritual Growth: A Christian Approach to Dreamwork by Louis Savary, Patricia Berne, and Strephon Williams

Yes Please

My Rating: 

Method of Reading: Hardback book
Dates of Reading: December 27, 2014-December 29, 2014
Author: Amy Poehler
Publication Year: 2014
Recommended to: Basic Poehler fans.
Quotes: Surprisingly and unfortunately, no.
Movie: None.

Wikipedia Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amy_Poehler#Bibliography
Link: http://amysaysyesplease.com/

My View: Unfortunately, I was very disappointed by this book. Poehler is one of the funniest comedians alive today and she dished out a dull, whiney, winey, and pseudo-ethereal brick of a book with a vaguely 3D cover. There are certainly some gems herein: the sections about Ambivalence, Haitian children, Parks and Recreation, and possible titles for her forthcoming divorcĂ©e-help manuals were often touching, funny, and felt like they were coming from a place of easy writing (often the most real place to write from). The rest read like a drunken(/stoned?) Oprah wannabe's diary. I've come to expect a lot from Poehler I suppose, but it's probably not a great time in her life to be "reading the tea leaves." In all, she was trying too hard to verbalize a secret recipe for the good life rather than write about what she cares for. Next time, Amy, maybe put in a little less about your drug days in the wild wild UCB and a little more actual... content.

Your Bibliomaniac

Poehler, Amy. Yes Please. New York: HarperCollins, 2014. Print.

Sunday, December 28, 2014

The Magician's Nephew

My Rating: 

Method of Reading: Target's seven-book paperback.
Dates of Reading: October 20, 2014-October 25, 2014
Author: C.S. Lewis
Publication Year: 1955
Recommended to: I think this category has been pretty well-defined by history.
"I'd ha' been a better man all my life if I'd known there were things like this" (62).
"And as Adam's race has done the harm, Adam's race shall help to heal it" (80).
"All get what they want; they do not always like it" (100).
"...power rolled about them and over them and entered into them that they felt they had never really been happy or wise or good, or even alive and awake, before" (103).
Movie: "In development" per IMDb.

Wikipedia Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Magician%27s_Nephew
Link: https://www.cslewis.com/us/books/paperback/the-magicians-nephew-full-color/9780064409438

My View: Widely viewed among my friends as the least powerful of the series, I actually thought the book was pretty good--although most of the allegory was blunt enough to knock you out in one swift hit.

Your Bibliomaniac

Lewis, C.S. The Magician's Nephew. 2001. The Chronicles of Narnia. New York: HarperCollins, n.d. 7-106. Print.