Showing posts from April, 2010

Review: The Lost Symbol

Dan Brown has a successful formula: he takes subjects that have intense followers and speculates on their secrets in his fiction.  The Catholic Church, Christianity and Freemasonry have been subjected to his imagination.  Normally, readers can be distracted from the story by the a cadre of detractors publishing shelves and shelves of tomes "debunking" his stories.  Thankfully, The Lost Symbol has bypassed that rite of passage, with little response from the Masons and gentle mocking of Brown's creative use of D.C. geography and landmarks. Brown has a very successful formula that works like gangbusters for him.  I loved it the first time I read it in The DaVinci Code .  It was similar, and similarly successful, in Angels and Demons .  I found it equally successful, and with a few new twists, in The Lost Symbol . I strongly recommend not consuming too many Brown novels in a setting, as I did, or all you will see are the similarities. Brown makes everyone in his books

Book/Reading-Related Holidays List

Every day is a holiday when it comes to books, reading, learning and language.  However, there are a few days that stand out for no other reason than they remind us to celebrate. Here are a few dates to remember: National Grammar Day — March 4 National Poetry Month — April Shakespeare's birthday — April 26 Children's Book Week — May 10-16, 2010 Fall for the Book Festival — September 19-24, 2010 National Punctuation Day — September 24 Banned Books Week — September 25 - October 2, 2010 National Book Festival — late September Items listed without years fall on the same date annually. We have no idea what's up with the National Book Festival — the Library of Congress doesn't have a 2010 date listed. Can you think of any others?  Birthdays of your favorite authors, perhaps? Let me know what holidays should be added to this list!  (No, your birthday doesn't count.) (For this list, that is.)

Libraries and Poetry

It is no secret, my love of books.  I hope also it is no secret I hold an equally deep love for libraries, especially public ones.  The first tax-supported public library opened on this day in 1833, in Peterborough, N.H., and it stands today with more than 9,000 other public libraries that feed our need for information and resources.   You may not be able to get a subscription to the Post or pay for Internet connection, but you know you can get that at the library — as well as books in many languages, DVDs, recorded books and reference material and magazines from all over the world. We talk about all of the things we can live without in economic hard times.  Some jurisdictions seem to think libraries are one of those things that can come and go when "times get tough."  You and I know better.  Call your mayor, call your chairman, call your parish president or county leader and make sure they know that, too.  While we're at it, let's have a shout-out to all of the libra

Celebrate National Poetry Month. You Know You Want To.

April is National Poetry Month, and readers of all ages can celebrate poetry in a number of ways: reading it, writing it, listening to it all come to mind as suitable poetic pastimes. Look no further than Hedgehog Lover , a blog that celebrates poetry all month long.  Stop by for your daily dose of poetry and leave a comment about the poem, poetry or National Poetry Month. If you have ideas of poems to post, make sure to mention it on the blog, or send the blog editor a note . Go ahead and join the poetry rabble-rousers at Hedgehog Lovers!  You'll be glad you did.