Posted in arc

More Than a Doctrine The Eisenhower Era in the Middle East by Randall Fowler

More Than a Doctrine
The Eisenhower Era in the Middle East
by Randall Fowler

Publication date May 2018

It is widely believed that president Eisenhower was a boring non-entity. That he was continually playing golf, letting others deal with the day to day management of the country. It was believed that he was inept and knew little about foreign policy. This book seeks to rectify that belief.

This book analyses the Speeches given by Eisenhower, looking at the rhetorical devices used by the president to move public opinion his way and to move the country to a more interventionist Stance, especially when it came to the ‘Middle East’. It showed how he often allowed other people to speak, hiding his own very active involvement in the world behind the actions of others. Moreover, the work highlights the way that America sought to hide their involvement in the gulf region by placing countries, such as the United Kingdom, in visible positions, using these countries to cover America’s increasing power within the Middle East.

This book has an academic feel with close and dense analysis of texts. This may inhibit the general reader. But, this very well written book is well worth a read.

Posted in arc

Crusade and Jihad The Thousand-Year War Between the Muslim World and the Global North By William R. Polk

Source Netgalley (this book was given to me by the publisher in the hope of an honest review

Publication date 9th January 2018

I am very behind on reviews. This year has been hellish. So, for the next few weeks I will be catching up by writing really basic, short reviews. Here’s the first.

Polk has reported from many global hotspots during the course of his career. This book is his attempt to begin to put the pieces together. He explores the relationship between the ‘Muslim East’ and the ‘Christian West’. From the Moguls to the modern day, it spans the Muslim/Arab world; from Africa to the ‘Middle East’, from China to Europe, and all stops in between. It looks at this history in order to explain the present day. Polk looks at the tensions that exist between ‘East and West’, analysing the horrors of colonialism and the seeds of today’s terrorism, The book explores the origins of many of today’s most active terrorist organisations. This is a long book, a hard read that may intimidate the casual reader, but it’s worth the effort.

Posted in plans

2018\2019 projects

Summer vacation projects

From now til October

Man Booker read – reading the long list

Year long reading project

October to june

I will read only women writers

Research project

The fabians

Posted in award lists, awards

Man booker announced

The list is out and the fun begins. I am glad that overstory is on the list. Surprised that there is a graphic novel. Are you going to read the list.

Belinda Bauer (UK) Snap (Bantam Press)

Anna Burns (UK) Milkman (Faber & Faber)

Nick Drnaso (USA) Sabrina (Granta Books)

Esi Edugyan (Canada) Washington Black (Serpent’s Tail)

Guy Gunaratne (UK) In Our Mad And Furious City (Tinder Press)

Daisy Johnson (UK) Everything Under (Jonathan Cape)

Rachel Kushner (USA) The Mars Room(Jonathan Cape)

Sophie Mackintosh (UK) The Water Cure (Hamish Hamilton)

Michael Ondaatje (Canada) Warlight(Jonathan Cape)

Richard Powers (USA) The Overstory (William Heinemann)

Robin Robertson (UK) The Long Take(Picador)

Sally Rooney (Ireland) Normal People (Faber & Faber)

Donal Ryan (Ireland) From A Low And Quiet Sea (Doubleday Ireland)

Posted in Book review, Uncategorized

The man who climbs trees

The Man Who Climbs Trees

By James Aldred

Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

Pub Date 22 May 2018

Source Netgalley

James Aldred climbs trees for a living. He scout’s out trees that provide the best camera angles. He is part of a team that produces those nature documentaries that we all love. This book explores his relationship with trees. He narrates those episodes in his life that inspired his love of trees before outlining his journey to his current position. He then sketches some filming assignments, giving beautifully descriptive accounts; of the trees and nature that he encountered on his journey, the extraordinary lengths that he takes to get those shots, and the sometimes nerve jangling wild encounters that happened throughout his career. Part memoir, part nature log, this book is, above all other things, a love letter to trees and the nature that they help support

Posted in awards

Man Booker International prize longlist

The 2018 Man Booker International prize longlist

I’ve been waiting for the list all morning and now it’s here

The 7th Function of Language by Laurent Binet, translated by Sam Taylor (France, Chatto)

The Impostor by Javier Cercas, translated by Frank Wynne (Spain, MacLehose Press)

Vernon Subutex 1 by Virginie Despentes, translated by Frank Wynne (France, MacLehose Press)

Go, Went, Gone by Jenny Erpenbeck, translated by Susan Bernofsky (Germany, Portobello Books)

The White Book by Han Kang, translated by Deborah Smith (South Korea, Portobello Books)

Die, My Love by Ariana Harwicz, translated by Sarah Moses and Carolina Orloff (Argentina, Charco Press)

The World Goes On by László Krasznahorkai, translated by John Batki, Ottilie Mulzet and George Szirtes (Hungary, Tuskar Rock Press)

Like a Fading Shadow by Antonio Muñoz Molina, translated by Camilo A Ramirez (Spain, Tuskar Rock Press)

The Flying Mountain by Christoph Ransmayr, translated by Simon Pare (Austria, Seagull Books)

Frankenstein in Baghdad by Ahmed Saadawi, translated by Jonathan Wright (Iraq, Oneworld)

Flights by Olga Tokarczuk, translated by Jennifer Croft (Poland, Fitzcarraldo Editions)

The Stolen Bicycle by Wu Ming-Yi, translated by Darryl Sterk (Taiwan, Text Publishing)

The Dinner Guest by Gabriela Ybarra, translated by Natasha Wimmer
(Spain, Harvill Secker)