Category Archives: Books & Reviews

The Windup Girl

Post petroleum dystopia in Thailand. The generically modified foods dominate the calorie sources. Animals, or muscle, power normal transportations or everyday machineries. Methane, produced by composting pretty much everything, is for cooking. Diseases, mutated so quickly that they are without … Continue reading

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The Girl on the Train

I think this is a “mystery suspense thriller.” It was masterfully written in term of plot development. Three female characters — Rachel, Anna, and Megan — told the story from their angles chronologically. Be careful to notice the date, since … Continue reading

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Moral Animal

How did we evolve to have values? Are they the derivative of emotions such as love, disgust, anger, sympathy, etc.? If so, why did we evolve to have those emotions? If we did, would other animals also? At the end … Continue reading

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又讀射鵰

當然是全三部: 射鵰,神鵰俠侶,倚天屠龍記. 上次讀金庸,有數十年了. 當年,好得武俠是在報紙上連載的.作家的習慣是一次寫一周. 其他武俠,也都是論字記酬. 因此寫越長稿費越多. 當年看得過癮.今天讀來, 自然感覺故事的拖延. 當年看的是武功. 現在人物和情節反而是重點了. 金庸能在當年寫人物,今天尤感清新,個個性格鮮明,躍躍欲生,活在腦裏. 以前遇到歷史詩詞都跳過,現在心靜了點,能欣賞多些了. 當年讀小龍女,日思夜想,恨不得飛到書裏見她一面. 今天反覺得郭襄寫的最好. 從小說的角度,人物的重點是他們的缺陷. 情節的重點是不落成套. 射鵰的郭靖黃蓉,神鵰的楊過小龍女,都有他們的性格缺陷,讀者能有共鳴. 倚天的張無忌,唯一的問題就是對”好看女人”抵擋不住. 殷素素死前說的,其實就是重點. 這個”共鳴點”不夠深. 趙敏,及其她女角,也描畫粗淺. 好在倚天情節寫得最好,全書還是好看. 我極少重讀書,下次看射鵰,大概不會了.

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Sixth Extintion

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Paper Money

This is my second Ken Follett (after Hammer of Eden) and I am adding his other books to my queue. He published this book in 1977. The version I read included a new preface that was quite entertaining to read … Continue reading

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Olympic Penisula

Few people realized that Seattle is probably more than 100 miles from the Pacific Ocean. On her west is the magnificent Olympic Mountain that, on clear days, I can see from my balcony. The snow capped shines brightly in the … Continue reading

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The Dinner

Two brothers went to dinner at an obviously high-end restaurant in Holland. Paul clearly dreaded this event and arrived early with Claire, his wife. A while later, his brother, Serge, arrive with his wife, Babette. What, someone wrote a book … Continue reading

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Imitation Game

Alonzo Church first came up with Lambda Calculus, an obscure branch of mathematics that deals with the manipulation of symbols. Pretty much at the same time, Alan invented the (Universal) Turing machine, an ingenious construct that manipulates symbols with programs. … Continue reading

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The Martian: A Novel

Such a nerdy book. Such a page turner. Such a must-read. Like Robinson Crusoe or Cast Away, the protagonist got stranded, only in Mars. Now, how the hell can one survive there, as the only living creature on the entire … Continue reading

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