Listen Jena (and unborn child), in the wake of my blitz of Batman blogs several weeks back, I did not expect so many nice people to read. What I did expect, though, was that someone would eventually accuse me of giving Christopher Nolan too much credit. I think maybe I did, but that is the best way to enjoy a good story.
Many students struggle in English class with the question of the author’s intent. The teacher (or some…Continue
Added by Brian Beise (Books Ningmaster) on September 17, 2012 at 1:00pm — No Comments
Listen Jena, you might’ve seen this thing posted around Facebook, and I want you to rest assured; the lady on this e-card is wrong about Romeo and Juliet. Don’t be tricked by her sassy glasses or smart suit. Maybe she’s still frustrated about the D she got in high school English and is now taking it out on Shakespeare. So let’s look at this pink nonsense one step at a time.
First of all, Romeo’s and Juliet’s…Continue
Listen, Jena, I want to dig more into the scale of adventure. You know Daniel Defoe was sort of the father of the novel, but J.M. Coetzee's Foe goes after Defoe's best book, exploring the reasons we must tell stories, showing how details keep us speaking and listening.
Added by Brian Beise (Books Ningmaster) on January 31, 2012 at 8:00am — No Comments
Listen, Jena, it turns out Charles Dickens’ A Tale of Two Cities was a key inspiration for The Dark Knight Rises. Seeing as the 200th anniversary of Dickens’ birth is this coming February 7, I thought it’d be nice to explore the themes Christopher Nolan might be drawing on.
It’s clear that Gotham explodes with civil unrest in the film. The trailer shows scenes of a wealthy house being raided, the people inside it dragged down the stairs and…Continue
Listen, Jena, I’ve really been enjoying the Nook I got for Christmas (thanks, Mam and Dad). Three dollars and five minutes got all Mark Twain’s books onto this little eReader. I love our apartment full of actual books, though, so I thought I should figure out whether or not eReaders are going to ruin books. Also I photographed my newly organized library. You married into this.
Maybe the internet crippled the music industry,…Continue
Listen, Jena, I know I’ve gone on about Charles Dickens a bit this month, but it’s Christmas time, and no writer helps us define and celebrate the season like Dickens. So here are six interesting facts about his miniature masterpiece, A Christmas Carol.
Added by Brian Beise (Books Ningmaster) on December 20, 2011 at 10:00am — No Comments
Listen, Jena, if you get around to reading this entry, it won’t be because the title pulled you in. It’ll be because you love me, for some reason. This got me thinking about writing and mortality, and made me wonder; who’s better suited to enjoy Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol: his wife Catherine, or me?
Dickens dabbled in mesmerism. He was an actor, a philanthropist, a maker of amazing punch, and able to read his works aloud so effectively that women…Continue
Added by Brian Beise (Books Ningmaster) on December 14, 2011 at 8:30am — No Comments
Listen, Jena. I know you’re looking at a picture of that video game you hate so much, and it might seem I'm going to rant about it, but I’m really going to talk about honor, courage, Lancelot fighting King Arthur, and a chapter from G.K. Chesterton’s book, “What’s Wrong with the World.”
Despite its futuristic setting, the combat in “Halo” is less like real contemporary warfare than the battles and epic duels of the middle ages. When knights in armor ruled the…Continue
Added by Brian Beise (Books Ningmaster) on December 7, 2011 at 2:00pm — No Comments
Listen, Jena. Cobb’s revelation at the end of Inception reminds me in a very geeky way of Puddleglum’s victory over the Emerald Witch in The Silver Chair, book four of C.S. Lewis’ Chronicles of Narnia. I think each scene might shed light on the other.
Even if There’s No Aslan
At the climax of The Silver Chair, deep in an underground country, the…Continue
Added by Brian Beise (Books Ningmaster) on December 6, 2011 at 6:30am — No Comments
Listen, Jena, fame is no reason to write a book. Being Michael Caine is, though, and his autobiography The Elephant to Hollywood is a cozy collection of anecdotes spread across a varied and fantastic acting career. Get the audio book. It’s not the same without that voice.
Added by Brian Beise (Books Ningmaster) on December 5, 2011 at 1:30pm — No Comments
Listen, Jena. Neil Gaiman’s The Graveyard Book is a ghostlier, deadlier, more joyful channeling of Rudyard Kipling’s The Jungle Book. An infant’s parents are murdered, and the baby narrowly escapes the killer. Not into a jungle, though: into an old English graveyard. The Bagheera equivalent here is Silas, neither living nor dead (probably a vampire). Rather than wolves, two ghosts adopt the boy. The murderer is not a tiger, but a monstrous man…Continue
Jena did you know Die Hard was a book first? Nothing Lasts Forever, by Roderick Thorp, renamed Die Hard later to tie in with the movie. From what I can tell, it’s a good thing the Bruce Willis flick is not a faithful adaptation.
This got me thinking about originalists, who…Continue
Added by Brian Beise (Books Ningmaster) on November 29, 2011 at 6:00am — No Comments
Listen, Jena, after that great lunch you whipped up yesterday I showed your brother my newly organized library and talked our way into the idea that books and stories make places and experiences immeasurably better.
Phrases like “those who can’t do teach” and “get your nose out of a book” suggest that reading about some exciting place is a poor or cowardly man’s way of seeing it for himself. The idea there is that reading is a poor imitation of actual experience.