Posts Tagged ‘literature’

Franklin: The Autobiography by Benjamin Franklin

Franklin: The AutobiographyFranklin: The Autobiography by Benjamin Franklin
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

I am no scholar on Franklin but I knew enough about him to know that I wanted to learn more. Naturally, I thought I would learn the most by reading a book about Mr. Franklin that was written by the man himself. Franklin: The Autobiography is full of interesting facts about most aspects of his life. His autobiography covers things about his family, friends, jobs, travels, and of course it covers some of his inventions and experiments. Benjamin Franklin was a genius that constantly worked at making himself a better person and the world around him a better place.

As I started to read the book I found I had to force myself to keep reading. Though there were several parts that I found very interesting, there were even more parts in the book that I felt would be better suited to putting insomniacs to sleep.

For some reason I was expecting beautiful writing using words rarely used today, which I would have loved, but there was very little use of uncommon words (felicity being about the only exception) and there were no flowery passages at all. I usually go into a book with little or no expectations. So part of the problem I had with this book could have been of my own making.

If this book were a food I would say there is a lot of substance but not much flavor. So, I would only recommend it for someone starving for knowledge on Benjamin Franklin (or insomniacs).

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The Shining by Stephen King

The ShiningThe Shining by Stephen King

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

After I read Stephen King’s book, On Writing, I found myself wanting to read one of his novels. The list of books he has written is impressive and picking which one to read first was going to be a tough decision. I have seen many movies based on his books and found most of the movies enjoyable and entertaining. Though, thinking back there was one movie that was head and shoulders above the rest, The Shining. I saw The Shining in the early eighties with a couple of friends and we all were captivated and through the years parts of that movie has stuck with all of us. Using the logic that the book is always better than the movie, my choice was made.

The Shining is about a remote hotel (The Overlook) and a man who was hired to be the caretaker for the winter, and his family. The family consists of the father, Jack, the mother Wendy, and their son Danny. Danny is only five but he shines, meaning he has an ESP ability. The Overlook Hotel wants the power that Danny has and will stop at nothing to get it.

The Overlook Hotel is as much of a character in the story as anyone else. The three main human characters all have an internal conflict raging inside them. The father, Jack, is a recovering alcoholic and really needs this job, the mother Wendy has issues with her own mother and Danny knows that the Overlook is a bad place but thinks it will help his daddy. The Overlook knows that once the snow falls they will trapped and there will be no escaping.

There are more than a few places in this book that will have you turning on the lights, sitting on the edge of your seat, and holding your breathe. I am not much of a horror fan, in books or movies, except during the holidays season (Thanksgiving through New Year’s). However, Stephen Kings use of language and his ability to create both emotional and physical intensity has made me a fan. Though, I think it will be necessary to read more of his books before claiming to be a true “hardcore” King fan.

Highly recommend, one of the scariest, most intense books I have read.

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