Saturday, February 11, 2017

This season's Lifeline Bookfair haul so far

Not sure if I go another time tomorrow, but so far today's visit to the Lifeline Bookfair here in Canberra has netted the following:

Tolkien JRR, The Silmarillion.
I have read that one before, although in German I think (?). But we didn't own the book ourselves, and I may want to read it again.

Orwell G, Animal Farm.
Another one that I have read once before, but as a teenager. Again I did not have the book myself, having at that time borrowed it from a friend.

Wells HG, The Invisible Man.
A classic that caught my interest.

Scott W, Ivanhoe.
Likely not the best book I have bought today. My understanding is that it is pretty cheesy. But when I was younger I played Defender of the Crown and watched Ivanhoe movies, so it might be nice to read the novel that started it all.

MacDonald G, The Wise Woman and other Fantastic Stories.
Sounds interesting because the author is billed as "the great nineteenth-century innovator of modern fantasy" who "came to influence" CS Lewis, Charles Williams and JRR Tolkien. The back cover further calls the book one of a set of four, but sadly the other three were nowhere to be seen.

Silverberg R, The Longest Way Home.
A science fiction novel from an author some of whose books I have read in Germany translation years ago (mostly Majipoor novels). Not sure how it will turn out.

Bramah E, Kai Lung Unrolls His Mat.
Finally, this is probably the weirdest of them all. My hope is it will be something in the vein of Barry Hughart's chronicles of Master Li. We shall see.

In addition, we bought several books and a puzzle for our daughter, and yesterday my wife already went for several books and CDs herself. May have to donate some books back one of these days, or the bookshelf with the novels will fold into itself and turn into a singularity.

Update 12 Feb 2017: Went back again today and spent more time in non-fiction.

James W, The Varieties of Religious Experience.
A very famous book originally published in 1902, it examines the origin of religion from a psychological perspective. The critical introduction claims that the author was actually fairly charitable ("a classic that is ... too religious to have influenced much psychological research"), but one can imagine that the whole idea behind the work wouldn't have sat too well with many of the faithful.

Baggini J, Freedom Regained.
Having participated in the never-ending online discussion on Free Will I thought it might be good to read something by a philosopher on the subject. Admittedly there might be some bias on my side, as the author clearly has the same stance as I have, at least in the broad outlines.

Machiavelli N, Il Principe.
The classic's classic of all the books I bought, this is the 16th century book that Machiavelli is famous for. I got the German translation.

Astonishing, by the way, how much has been sold since yesterday.

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