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MannyRayner

Manny Rayner's book reviews

I love reviewing books - have been doing it at Goodreads, but considering moving here.

Currently reading

The Greatest Show On Earth: The Evidence For Evolution
Richard Dawkins
R in Action
Robert Kabacoff
Fluid Concepts and Creative Analogies
Douglas R. Hofstadter
McGee on Food and Cooking: An Encyclopedia of Kitchen Science, History and Culture
Harold McGee
Epistemic Dimensions of Personhood
Simon Evnine
Pattern Recognition and Machine Learning (Information Science and Statistics)
Christopher M. Bishop
Relativity, Thermodynamics and Cosmology
Richard C. Tolman
The Cambridge Handbook of Second Language Acquisition
Julia Herschensohn, Martha Young-Scholten

Max Et Koffi Sont Copains

Max Et Koffi Sont Copains - Dominique de Saint Mars, Serge Bloch Max is about 6, and Koffi is his best friend. They both love soccer. They both love video games. They sit next to each other in class and always manage to get exactly the same answers on the math tests. Teacher turns a blind eye. But one day at recess, an aggressive-looking boy with red hair comes up to Koffi and says some very rude things. He even uses the N-word.

Koffi's heard it all before. He uses the H-word back. But that's not enough, and the kid is a total asshole. Max and Koffi vow to get even. Max goes over to Koffi's place that evening to meet his cool African family. Koffi's father gives them a little lecture on human evolution, race and racism. [This bit is rather boring]

Next day, the red-headed kid's there again and looks like he's going to start more trouble. But before anything can happen, two older boys come up making territorial claims. They want this part of the yard! Little kids, beat it!

"What can we do?" asks the red-head disconsolately. "They're bigger."

"But there's more of us!" say Max and Koffi. Under their competent generalship, the little kids successfully evict the two bullies from their corner. The red-head is impressed. He humbly asks Koffi if they can be friends. He's sorry about what he said the other day.

"I've already forgotten it," says Koffi magnanimously.

Teacher comes out with his whistle. Everyone line up in pairs! With a glow of satisfaction, Max sees Koffi and Red-Head line up with their arms around each other's shoulders in the classic pose of solidarity. But he hasn't been paying attention. He turns around and discovers that he's standing next to... OMG... A GIRL!!! He instinctively backs away in horror.

Ya gotta draw the line somewhere.