Books read recently by J. Zimmerman.
Inspired in part by's book blog.

Reader's Bill of Rights - after Daniel Pennac in Better than Life as quoted in the November 2003 Utne Magazine - includes the rights to:

George Orwell (1938) in Homage to Catalonia (though, of course, one could say this about the Bush-Cheney regime in the 21st century):

{ June (junio) 2004 }


(06.27.2004) (06.26.2004) (06.25.2004) (06.24.2004) (06.23.2004) (06.22.2004) (06.21.2004) (06.19.2004) (06.18.2004) (06.17.2004) (06.15.2004) (06.12.2004) (06.11.2004) (06.09.2004) (06.08.2004) (06.07.2004) (06.06.2004) (06.04.2004)

{ May (mayo) 2004 }



(05.29.2004) (05.28.2004) (05.26.2004) (05.23.2004) (05.17.2004)

Buy 'The Mouse and his Child' The Mouse and his Child
by Russell Hoban.

Long ago, the teacher and creator JoAnn King recommended this book as one of her favorites. Spurred by Lost Classics finally I read it, and find that it teaches about nature - of both the tooth-and-claw variety and the milk-of-human variety. Also, lots of lovely puns including:
"'The elephant of surprise. Element,' he corrected himself." (05.16.2004)

(05.15.2004) (05.14.2004)

Buy 'Against the Gods: The Remarkable Story of Risk' Against the Gods: The Remarkable Story of Risk
by Peter L. Bernstein (1998).
See our review.

(05.08.2004) (05.07.2004)

{ April (abril) 2004 }




Lent is over, so I sipped a Gewurtztraminer, nibbled dark chocolate, and read the delicious:
Buy 'Real Chocolate : Sweet and Savory Recipes for Nature's Purest Form of Bliss' Real Chocolate : Sweet and Savory Recipes for Nature's Purest Form of Bliss
by Chantal Coady.
Improve your Defense of Dark Chocolate Arts

See her book for fifty delicious recipes from a leading campaigner for REAL chocolate.
Try her Yuuuuummmmmmm Chocolate bombe, Yuuuuummmmmmm Chocolate nemesis revisited, and Yuuuuummmmmmm Bad Girl's Trifle.

See also our chocolate page for how:

  1. chocolate is one of the most nutritious and easily digested foods known.
  2. chocolate contains many of vitamins, minerals, and complex alkaloids;
  3. chocolate is an instant anti-depressant;
  4. chocolate provides antibacterial protection.
(04.15.2004) (04.11.2004) (04.09.2004)
Buy 'Homage to Catalonia' Brilliant One of the best books read in 2004. Brilliant
Finished Homage to Catalonia by George Orwell (1938).
See our review of 'Homage to Catalonia'.

A riveting book, and one of the few to clarify the mysterious Spanish Civil War. While it is not a comedy, it is often funny because Orwell and his companions were able to see some of the humor in their dire circumstances.

In 1936, Eric Blair (the novelist, critic, and political satirist who used the pseudonym George Orwell) went to Spain to write about the Spanish Civil War, and to enlist in a Socialist Republican militia. He said he went to Spain "to fight Fascism" and that he was fighting for "common decency". Throughout Homage to Catalonia, one gets a sense of Orwell's commitment to honesty.

During 1936 and 1937, he fought with the "Trotskyist" P.O.U.M. in support of the Republican government. In the trenches in the Catalan section of Spain, he battled against the attempted take-over by Franco's Fascists in the Spanish Civil War. Despite the sacrifices by the Spanish and volunteers from Britain and the United States, Franco and his fellow-Fascists defeated the legally elected socialist Republican government of Spain.

Orwell has said: "Every line of serious work that I have written since 1936 has been written, directly or indirectly against totalitarianism and for democratic Socialism as I understand it."

See especially Chapter Five. Some quotes:


(04.06.2004) (04.04.2004)