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Beiträge von John Ratliff
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John Ratliff (Santa Clara, CA United States)
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The Shining (Signet)
The Shining (Signet)
von Stephen King
  Taschenbuch

8 von 8 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen King's masterpiece -- and one of my favorite books, 5. Juli 2000
Rezension bezieht sich auf: The Shining (Signet) (Taschenbuch)
I first read this book in 1980, at the recommendation of a coworker. I'd stayed away from Stephen King ... too popular for my advanced tastes. Anyway, I decided to take a look at the book about 10 PM (on a work night). Finished it about 7 AM the next morning. No book has ever taken over my imagination like this, before or since.
Since then, I've read all of King's work, and consider him the contemporary Dickens. But having just reread the Shining for, perhaps, the fourth time, it remains my favorite, and a modern masterpiece, in my opinion.
But I recognize this is essentially personal. I've not identified with any other character is literature as I do with Jack Torrance. I'm now more than ten years into sobriety and recovery, and I've often recommended this book to men that I sponsor. The depiction of the alcoholic personality, the combination of fear and resentment and self-pity, at war with Jack's very real love for his family and desire for goodness, is expressed in a way that makes it clear that King is writing of something he knows all too well on a personal level. Jack Torrance is one of literature's great tragic figures. I can only say, "There but for the grace of God go I."
[By the way, this is why I can't abide by Kubrick's interpretation. There's no tragedy or complexity in Nickleson's portrayal of Torrance. Kubrick's detachment from the human delemma ultimately doesn't work for me.]
I do believe that there is a coherent force/power of evil/darkness in the world, though it is not as powerful that the force/power of good/light. But I think one of King's most basic points (in all his work) is that we ignore the power of darkness at our own risk, that this is one of the real problems in the contemporary Age of Therapy. Central to the Shining is the way the force of the evil in the Hotel is able to utilize Jack's weaknesses ultimately to turn him to its purposes--to destroy what he love the most. I find this very, very realistic (viewing the supernatural stuff as kind of window dressing).
Having reached out for help in a way that the Torrance character couldn't, I'm now blessed with a life happier than I could imagine. But this book now reminds me of how much Divine Grace is involved for anyone blessed with the ability to build healthy loving relationships with those around him/her, especially family members, one day at a time.


Advice for New Faculty Members: Nihil Nimus
Advice for New Faculty Members: Nihil Nimus
von Robert Boice
  Taschenbuch
Preis: EUR 50,24

5.0 von 5 Sternen A great book for life, not just getting tenure, 7. April 2000
I'm in the second year of a tenure track position, and it's really true that the universal social expectation is that getting tenure, especially the process of writing for publication, involves a whole lot of suffering, and that only the strong (definitely not including me) survive. Robert Boice has written a deeply spiritual and inciteful book not only about the tenure process and academic writing, but about how to live life mindfully and joyfully. I cannot recommend this book too highly.


Once an Eagle
Once an Eagle
von Anton Myrer
  Taschenbuch

5.0 von 5 Sternen One of the finest novels of any kind I have ever read, 17. Oktober 1999
Rezension bezieht sich auf: Once an Eagle (Taschenbuch)
I ordered this book as a result of the recent NY Times article and after having read the rave reviews here. But I couldn't anticipate the profound effect this book would have on me. I have read many novels, but few have pulled me into the world of a character so proundly as this one, and made me care about someone as much as I did about Sam Damon. We do forget about what it means to be a person of principle and compassion, and all the reviews about Sam's character are spot on. But the book is also such a gread story, with many profound and moving moments. I have to say the most powerful sustained portion of the book for me is the World War II section ... I made the mistake of starting this section late in the evening and read all night to finish the book.
This book has everything: a great hero and a fully developed and despicable villian, excellent supporting characters, compelling scenes. It's not a stretch to compare it to Tolstoy in its sweep and majesty.
Finally, my thanks to the War College for the reprint.


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