I recently read ”Dog On It” by Spencer Quinn. Bernie is a private eye and Chet is his dog (he flunked out of K-9 school.) The narration is provided by the dog and the author does such a good job of it…he’ll be on the case and knows when something is very, very important, but also can be distracted by the smell of a good steak! Anyhow, it’s a light read, but fun, especially for anyone who loves dogs.
Archive for March, 2009
I think the book has value in that it reminds us that we often make our judgements based on how a person looks, rather than actually knowing who they are. There’s a lot of tossing around of philosophers names, etc., since the author is a philosophy teacher ,and I found out in France philosophy is a part of their core curriculum. However, even though I wasn’t familiar with the tenets of the philosophers, I still “got” the story.
This is from the book’s publisher:
We are in the center of Paris, in an elegant apartment building inhabited by bourgeois families. Renée…conforms to every stereotype of the concierge: fat, cantankerous, addicted to television. Yet, unbeknownst to her employers, Renée is a cultured autodidact who adores art, philosophy, music, and Japanese culture. With humor and intelligence she scrutinizes the lives of the building’s tenants, who for their part are barely aware of her existence.
…Paloma, a twelve-year-old genius… is the daughter of a tedious parliamentarian, a talented and startlingly lucid child who has decided to end her life on….her thirteenth birthday. Until then she will continue behaving as everyone expects her to behave: a mediocre pre-teen high on adolescent subculture, a good but not an outstanding student, an obedient if obstinate daughter.
Paloma and Renée hide both their true talents and their finest qualities from a world they suspect cannot or will not appreciate them. They discover their kindred souls when a wealthy Japanese man named Ozu arrives in the building. Only he is able to gain Paloma’s trust and to see through Renée’s timeworn disguise to the secret that haunts her. This is a moving, funny, triumphant novel that exalts the quiet victories of the inconspicuous among us.
The Battle of Iwo Jima – Guerrilla Warfare in the Pacific
By Larry Hama Illustrated by Anthony Williams
This book is one in a series of World War II graphic novels. A graphic novel is similar to a comic book in that it has illustrations along with writing which helps you to better remember the plot, setting, and characters. The plot in a graphic novel is more serious than a regular comic book.
This graphic novel focused on the Battle of Iwo Jima which was a famous battle fought in the Pacific. The main characters for Japan were: Lt. General Tadamichi Kuribayashi, who led the Japanese troops against China, fought against Russia and commanded the Imperial Guard, and Lt. Colonel Baron Taeichi Nishi who commanded the tank regiment at Iwo Jima. For the American side, the main soldiers were : General Holland M. (Howling Mad) Smith, who supported US troops in Iwo Jima, Admiral Raymond Spruance, who commanded the Battle of Midway, and Corporal Hershel “Woody” Williams, who was the last flame thrower man left at Iwo Jima.
These and many other characters came to life through this graphic novel because of the illustrated scenes and the short summaries associated with each set of pictures. The graphic novel is an enjoyable type of book because it helps the reader understand the main points of the story due to its concise storytelling.
I enjoyed this novel and look forward to reading the others in the series because I have an interest in military history and graphic novels give me a quick summary.