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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

La Neige Était Sale

La Neige Était Sale - Georges Simenon - Ladies and gentlemen, watch carefully. Here's Frank, a young punk who lives in his mother's brothel in occupied France. He lies, drinks, steals, does black market business with the German officers, commits murder just for fun. Yes, feel free to touch him, he fucks his mother's girls every night while treating them like shit and is also trying to seduce the 16 year old virgin who lives across the hall.

Are you still watching... you may check that there is nothing up my sleeve... and now, using only sparse, descriptive prose, I will transform him into a universal symbol of human suffering and redemption that will remind you of L'Etranger, King Lear and Crime and Punishment, but still has a character all its own.

Sir, I understand your scepticism. You don't think it's possible, but... ABRACADABRA!!!

The audience stare in disbelief. A lone voice from the back asks plaintively:

- Bloody hell, how did Simenon do that?