Tag Archives: cities of the plain

2013 Year In Review: Fiction

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Top Ten:

1. THE NAPOLEON OF NOTTING HILL by G.K. Chesterton
2. ISLAND OF THE WORLD by Michael O’Brien
3. THE CROSSING & CITIES OF THE PLAIN by Cormac McCarthy
4. THE BROTHERS KARAMAZOV by Fyodor Dostoevsky
5. JANE EYRE by Charlotte Bronte
6. ANNA KARENINA by Leo Tolstoy
7. THE CHILDREN OF MEN by P.D. James (review)
8. WOOL by Hugh Howey (review)
9. CORALINE by Neil Gaiman (review)
10. THE BALLAD OF THE WHITE HORSE by G.K. Chesterton

Honorable Mentions:

11. OLD MAN’S WAR by John Scalzi (review)
12. BEOWULF: A NEW VERSE RENDERING by Douglas Wilson (review)
13. OF MICE AND MEN by John Steinbeck
14. CELL by Stephen King
15. DEADRISE by Robert Whitehill (review)

Wouldnt Hold A Candle

Mac nodded. He put the cigar in his teeth and pushed back the chair. Wait here a minute, he said.

John Grady listened to him going down the hall to his room. When he came back he sat down and placed a gold ring on the table.

That’s been in my dresser drawer for three years. It aint doin nobody any good there and it never will. We talked about everything and we talked about that ring. She didnt want it put in the ground. I want you to take it.

Sir I dont think I can do that.

Yes you can. I’ve already thought of everything you could possibly say on the subject so rather than go over it item by item let’s just save the aggravation and you put it in your pocket and come Tuesday you put it on that girl’s finger. You might need to get it resized. The woman that wore it was a beautiful woman. You can ask anybody, it wasnt just my opinion. But what you saw wouldnt hold a candle to what was on the inside.

– Cormac McCarthy, Cities of the Plain (p. 215)

On the Bookshelf XXII

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Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy
Faulkner dubbed it the “the best novel ever written”, and I can see where he’s coming from. Until now, my only experience with Tolstoy had been The Death of Ivan Ilych, which I enjoyed but wasn’t blown away by. But this book… wow. Just wow. Leave it to a Russian with a epic beard to write something this fantastic.
Cities of the Plain by Cormac McCarthy
“In this final volume of The Border Trilogy, two men marked by the boyhood adventures of All the Pretty Horses and The Crossing now stand together, in the still point between their vivid pasts and uncertain futures, to confront a country changing or already changed beyond recognition.” McCarthy has yet to disappoint me. I don’t know how the story will end, but I know it will be magnificent.
Institutes of the Christian Religion, Vol. II by John Calvin
One down, one to go. And Calvin is being a boss, as usual.
Wool by Hugh Howey
YES. FINALLY. I’ve been aching to get my hands on this one since last year. I love the story behind it: Howey wrote it while working as a bookseller, writing faithfully each morning and during every lunch break for nearly three years. He self-published in 2011, and the book has since become an underground hit (Ridley Scott has even purchased the film rights). So yeah: I’m only slightly excited to see what all the buzz is about.
Her Hand in Marriage by Douglas Wilson
Something tells me this is gonna be a really, really good read: “The modern dating system is bankrupt. It does not train young people to form a relationship but rather to form a series of relationships, hardening themselves to all but the current one… Biblical courtship is a humble affront to the sterility of modern relationships. And as a new generation rejoices in this ancient wisdom, the current waves of broken relationships will begin to recede.”
In Defense of Sanity edited by Ahlquist, Pearce, & Mackey
It’s a collection of essays by G.K. Chesterton. And it’s awesome (duh). What more do want to know?
Why We Love the Church by Kevin DeYoung & Ted Kluck
From J.I. Packer: “Two young men, a pastor and a layman, here critique the criticisms of the institutional church that are fashionable today. Bible-centered, God-centered, and demonstrably mature, they win the argument hands down. As I read, I wanted to stand up and cheer.” While we’re on the subject, I’d like to recommend the other book these guys wrote, Why We’re Not Emergent. Seriously. Go read it. They make a terrific team.

What’s on your bookshelf right now?