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"At first glance Israeli novelist David Grossman’s new novel, A Horse Walks into a Bar, which as the title suggests recounts a stand-up comedian’s performance one evening at a night club in the coastal city Netanya, appears to be a complete change in tone and direction from his previous two fiction books To the End of the Land and Falling Out of Time (the latter reviewed on NYJB), emotionally heavy works that either indirectly or directly deal with parental grief.

"But initial appearances can be deceiving, and though the new novel is seasoned with jokes it is a serious work that addresses emotional pain as a source of all art, even a genre as coarse and vulgar as stand-up comedy." -- from my review in New York Journal of Books

"Ayelet Gundar-Goshen’s (One Night, Markovitch) second novel Waking Lions starts as a moral drama in its first 14 chapters and becomes a suspenseful crime thriller in its final 11. Its strength lies in its third person narration’s shifting perspectives that develop its characters’ backstories and dramatic situations in the first part and its page turning pacing in the second part, in which the novel’s unanswered questions are resolved." -- from my review in New York Journal of Books
davidfcooper: (headshot 01/18/07)
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The Betrayers succeeds by combining thought provoking ethical dilemmas with dramatic tension in an engaging prose style and is enthusiastically recommended.” - from my New York Journal of Books review (which includes spoilers). For additional remarks, excerpts, and an exploration of the novel as a roman a clef see my examiner article.

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Anndowdcompliance
Ann Dowd as the restaurant manager in "Compliance"
 
Photo credit: 
allmoviephoto.com 

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examiner.com

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Barbara Oakley discusses her book Evil Genes: Why Rome Fell, Hitler Rose, Enron Failed, and My Sister Stole My Mother's Boyfriend on CSPAN's BookTV.

About the Program

In "Evil Genes" Barbara Oakley argues that the immoral behavior of Mao Zedong, Adolf Hitler, and Slobodan Milosevic has a genetic basis. She argues, further, that certain dysfunctional personality traits, such as narcissism, vindictiveness, and black-and-white thinking, are often found in politicians because these traits are advantageous in achieving political success.

About the Author

Barbara Oakley is a retired captain in the U.S. Army, worked as a translator on Soviet trawlers in the Bering Sea, and served as a radio operator at the South Pole Station in Antarctica. She is currently an engineering professor at Oakland University in Michigan.


Although she is not a psychologist the author has certainly done her homework. Her discussion of borderline personality disorder matches the dysfunctional traits of some of my relatives and friends. Do these traits remind you of anyone in your life, and does knowing that these traits are hard wired in their neural circuitry makes it easier to forgive?

Likewise according to Never Let Them See You Sweat conscientiousness is often considered the least dependent on genes, and extroversion and openness the most. Neuroticism, the closest barometer of calmness, is also highly determined by inheritance. Here are my results on the OCEAN personality test

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davidfcooper: (Default)
Barbara Oakley discusses her book Evil Genes: Why Rome Fell, Hitler Rose, Enron Failed, and My Sister Stole My Mother's Boyfriend on CSPAN's BookTV.

About the Program

In "Evil Genes" Barbara Oakley argues that the immoral behavior of Mao Zedong, Adolf Hitler, and Slobodan Milosevic has a genetic basis. She argues, further, that certain dysfunctional personality traits, such as narcissism, vindictiveness, and black-and-white thinking, are often found in politicians because these traits are advantageous in achieving political success.

About the Author

Barbara Oakley is a retired captain in the U.S. Army, worked as a translator on Soviet trawlers in the Bering Sea, and served as a radio operator at the South Pole Station in Antarctica. She is currently an engineering professor at Oakland University in Michigan.


Although she is not a psychologist the author has certainly done her homework. Her discussion of borderline personality disorder matches the dysfunctional traits of some of my relatives and friends. Do these traits remind you of anyone in your life, and does knowing that these traits are hard wired in their neural circuitry makes it easier to forgive?

Likewise according to Never Let Them See You Sweat conscientiousness is often considered the least dependent on genes, and extroversion and openness the most. Neuroticism, the closest barometer of calmness, is also highly determined by inheritance. Here are my results on the OCEAN personality test

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]
davidfcooper: (Default)
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The above notwithstanding I will continue to use semicolons which I find to be a useful way of linking two related thoughts or pieces of information. I prefer semicolons to choppy prose that results from a series of short sentences.
davidfcooper: (Default)
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The above notwithstanding I will continue to use semicolons which I find to be a useful way of linking two related thoughts or pieces of information. I prefer semicolons to choppy prose that results from a series of short sentences.

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