Archive for April, 2012

Book 777 Milan Kundera – The Unbearable Lightness of Being

April 26, 2012

My first encounter with a Kundera novel was in 1999. I had read ‘The Book of Laughter and Forgetting’ and I hated it. I dismissed it as pretentious European artsy rubbish (and in a way I still dislike books that follow that type of style) and promised I would never read him again.

 

And then it’s featured on the list.

So this time round, although skeptical I gave The Unbearable lightness of Being a chance and I loved it.  It’s very often you manage to read a book which is philosophical , political and has romantic background.

It’s Prague , 1968 and the Russians have invaded it. From then onwards the book focuses on the relationships between six individuals (and all are products of the background they grew up in) and how they interact with each other.

In the midst of this Kundera is trying to insert his philosophies on destiny and action , something I’m still not too sure about. After all although we do have free will sometimes things crop up which do effect us.

So yes , I did enjoy reading this and it also it did make me smile. Now and then I don’t mind a bit of romance even if it is intellectualized.

 

Advertisements

Book 778 David Gemmell – Legend

April 15, 2012

Sure the list has it’s fair share of pretentious european authors but it also challenges me and takes me out of my comfort zone. Trust me , i’d never see the day I’d actually read heroic fantasy , furthermore , liking it would be even rarer.  Anyway this is my first foray into the genre and I’m glad I did so.

The warriors of Drenai are being invaded by Ulric and Nadir tribesman , knowing that they will lose , The Earl calls the mighty legend Druss to fight one last battle in the hope that The Drenai win their land back. The thing is Druss is now old and is not as fit as he used to be. Despite this , he goes off to train the drenai soldiers and fight with them.

There’s much more ,  people who can invade dreams , magical swords and some battle scenes but Legend is basically about Druss  and how he is coping with the title ‘Legend’ , old age and whether he was destined to be a warrior.

Do not be fooled. Legend is a complex philosophical novel, yet incredibly readable and exhilarating. If you have never read fantasy , well you’ve a book to start off with!