Tuesday, April 19, 2005

Reading

In the past couple of months I've started reading again. I'm quite pleased that I found one of my hobbies that I had abandoned a couple of years ago. I'm not one for giving reviews of books, but I think I might have to say a few words about the ones I've recently read:

Player Piano
Wow, the person that loaned this book to me expected the ending of this book to be wholy depressing for me. I surprized him, and probably others with my reaction to it. The basis of the novel is that the world has become very mechanized and engineered. If you're not smart enough to go through college, get a Masters and build machines, you'd better be fast enough to not have machines replace you in normal labor, otherwise it's off to the military or work corp with you.

What kept me from being so depressed by the books ending was that despite a looming presense of effeciency, automation and standardization, there were still a a few people (bunches in fact) who wouldn't stand for the norm. Even though revolutionaries were not entirely altruistic, it still gave me hope that at some point, if the world tends towards this vision there will still be some hope, and some people willing to try and make a change. . . . Even if nothing comes of it, and even if people fall back to pre-change behavior and the ordeal is a wash.

Good Omens
Ha, what can I say; when a center point of a plot revolves around a pair of friends who just happen to be from opposite sides of the celestial spectrum and a large bit of conflict comes from a baby mismatch you know you're in for a fun story. The story was written by Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaimon, who I have been told are excellent authors, after reading this one, I tend to agree.

This was a funny book with a heartfelt ending. Thoroughly enjoyable reading.

1984
Privacy gone, history erradicated and love forbidden, the tennants of Oceana in a sentence. A classic defining the term "Big Brother."

Moreso that any book I have read in recent memory, 1984 has made me change my perceptions of life. Additionally, there has been no book to present someone more alone than Winston Smith. Like Player Piano the author paints a miserable picture of the future, but unlike Vonnegut, Orwell provides no glimmer of hope. This is the book that makes me want to stop eating for a week to see what it's like.