Jun 14, 2007

Without Blood by Alessandro Baricco

Alessandro Baricco is famous Italian writer and "Without Blood" (2002.) is one of his famous novels.
It`s short, but tells more than some three times longer novels. For me this novel was like a good and strong wine.
Baricco tells an almost real story (it could happen), divided in two parts separated by time. First part tells about little girl`s family murder at the end of war. In second part this girl Nina (already old woman then) meets with last surviving murderer Tito, who secretly spared her life. She had taken her time, prepared and fulfilled her revenge...almost... They sit down and share the memories. Tito thinks that Nina will kill him, but Nina isn`t so sure anymore... The war is over for them.
I liked Baricco`s writing style: clear and poetic, almost stingy in words, yet making each character psychologically deep. I could almost hear them speaking, so well written the dialogues are.
"Without Blood" is first novel I have read from A. Baricco and I`m impressed. Must search for his best known novel "Silk"...

Jun 4, 2007

Blogroll game

You can see little pink button on the right. It means that I`m participating in Blogroll game made up by Dewey. She has really nice blog and through this game I`ve found two (new)other interesting blogs:

I visited Imani`s blog The Books of My Numberless Dreams. She has read 70 books last year. That`s a lot.2nd blog I visited is Arukiyomi. Author lived in Japan and he likes to read old novels. I liked his idea about showing on map locations mentioned “Journey to the Interior of the Earth” I`ll definitely visit his blog again to see what he has read next.3rd blog I visited (actually it`s on my blogroll for some time already) is Booktraveller`s blog. I like her idea about reading books from different countries. It`s great ability for her blog readers to find out new books and new authors.

I shall say that I visited more than 3 blogs, but these where the ones I wanted to wrote about. Go on and participate!

Jun 2, 2007

President of Latvia

After some unexpected moments, rumours, discussions on mass media, protests and supporting ads, Latvia has new president Valdis Zatlers.

No one denies that he is really good doctor and he has done a lot in his position, but many people have doubts whether he will be good president. Because some politicians stand behind him, because he doesn`t understand politics so well, because he had taken gifts (money?) from patients....It all doesn`t look nice. Especially if we compare V. Zatlers with previous president Vaira Vike-Freiberga.

People love her, she is smart, she is good looking, she does what`s best for Latvia, she isn`t a marionette after all, she understands politics and foreign affairs well.
Many people, especially young ones, expected that Zatlers won`t get enough votes and politicians will choose some third person, like it happened when Freiberga was first elected. What can expect a president whom one part of Latvia`s inhabitants don`t support? Nothing much, I think. Let`s only hope that he will exceed our best expectations.

May 23, 2007

Apple blossoms

Most beautiful time of the year. This May is only about blooming. It`s hardly to see houses, all trees are like white and pink clouds.

Breakfast of Champions by Kurt Vonneguth

I read my fourth TBR book in one evening at the beginning of May, but couldn`t push myself to write a post about it.

"Breakfast of Champions" is my first ever read book from Vonneguth`s writings. I wasn`t sure if I`ll like it, because I have heard that whether you love or hate Vonneguth, there is no middle way. I think I`ll be the one who love :)

I suppose anyone knows this book, so I won`t repeat the plot. I liked the way Vonneguth tells stories, also in some places I got little but unsatisfied by his sudden change of story - his is swiftly switching between different subjects. One thing I liked the most, is his laughing about things other people take seriously:

There were one quadrillion nations in the Universe, but the nation Dwayne Hoover and Kilgore Trout belonged to was the only one with a national anthem which was gibberish sprinkled with question marks.
Some Vonneguth audio books are waiting for me, so I`m going to dig deeper into Vonneguth world.

May 15, 2007


Today I`m going to through out a lot of old books. They were left by old flat owner when she died. Too bad that she didn`t read good literature. There were mostly silly novels and books written in Soviet time about Soviet soldiers and comunism. Still I got few good books too: colection of Anthon Checkov works, F. Kafta, J.Vernes and some other authors` books. It`s not easy to through out books, but no one needs them, they are worth nothing.

Lately there is cleaning going on in Latvian libraries. Similar books like mines are thrown out. It`s normal. What seems little bit strange to me is that they through out also good classics if no one had read those books for some time. It`s possible to pick them up for no fee if someone wants, before books are sent to recicling.

Apr 29, 2007

The Art of War by Sun Tzu

The Art of War basically is old old book of Chinese advices how to fight, lead army and overcome enemy. I read two copies of it - one with only Sun Tzu`s thesis, second with other authors commentaries and explanations. Why I read it? Because I read one magazine article, where it was said, that Art of War was used by Cesar, Napoleon and others, as well as it is used in nowadays in USA army and some big companies trying to be the best in market.
Hmm, this book can really be used in company`s management, because some war strategies are quite similar to organization management. For example, need for clear and not doubtful commands, advice to put best soldiers (workers) on first line, importance of understanding ones own weaknesses and strengths etc.
Overall, it`s boring literature if one don`t think how to use those advices in life.