Saturday, May 31, 2014

Review: Lost Horison by James Hilton (1933)

Lost HorizonLost Horizon by James Hilton
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I’m amazed by just how much I enjoyed this book. It’s been about a week since I finished and I still keep thinking about it. I’ll probably have to read it again in a year or so just to see if the impression I got was true or a case of simply reading something at the right place and time.

Warning: The ending does leave QUITE A LOT(!) to the imagination (I’ve actually dreamed an ending for poor Conway since reading this). So, if you are one of those who needs everything tied up in a neat bow, this is not the book for you. I also wondered about the packaging of the tale—it’s presented as a story told to a friend about a story he got from another friend—but I think this was simply to allow for the very ambiguous ending.

Highly recommended!

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Sunday, May 25, 2014

Review: The Thin Man by Dashiell Hammett

The Thin ManThe Thin Man by Dashiell Hammett
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Finishing up with my Hammett...This one never held much attraction for me because I supposed it was going to parody the Agatha Christie type murder mystery and I prefer my Hammett straight up.

It was actually very enjoyable tho the mystery is not too difficult to figure out and, once you've deduced the "twist", it's pretty simple to decide whodunit.

Not sure why this was his bestseller. I'm an Op man myself.

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Review: Into the Heart of Borneo by Redmond O'Hanlon

Into the Heart of BorneoInto the Heart of Borneo by Redmond O'Hanlon
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

4.5 Stars really, as I ultimately found it just shy of perfect.

It seems natural to compare this to the travel writing of Bill Bryson, and similarities do exist, but O'Hanlon (and Fenton) offer their very British take on the comedic quest. I enjoyed every minute even tho O'Hanlon often seemed to be trying to insert the most arcane examples of sentence structure. Lots of talk about birds and, if I had any interest in ornithology, I'm sure I would have been fascinated. I found the three native guides far more interesting.

And then it ended. Just like that. I would have preferred some sort of summation. Instead I got: "Our search had ended."

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