27 December 2010

Book List Líon na cúig

Hmmm, book list five, what to do, what to do. . .

Let's go with. . .

Top ten children's chapter fiction CLASSICS I have read as an adult

1. At the Back of the North Wind by George MacDonald
2. Alice In Wonderland by Lewis Carroll
3. The Voyage of the Dawn Treader by Jack Lewis
4. The Little Prince by Antoine De Saint-Exupery
5. The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by Jack Lewis
6. James and the Giant Peach by Roald Dahl
7. Pilgrim's Progress by John Bunyan
8. Charlotte's Web by E. B. White
9. Anne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery
10. Stuart Little by E. B. White

I also have affection for 101 Dalmatians by Dodie Smith and The Story of Dr. Dolittle by Hugh Lofting

Also, as usual, there are several books I have yet to read or re-read that may have made the list.

Happy reading!

23 December 2010

Book List Zahl Vier

Top ten biography/autobiography books I have read in the last five years.

1. Surprised by Joy by Jack Lewis
2. Tolkien and Lewis: the Gift of Friendship by Colin Duriez
3. Jack by George Sayer
4. The Simple Faith of Mister Rogers by Amy Hollingsworth
5. Jack's Life by Douglas Gresham
6. Winston Churchill: An Intimate Portrait by Violet Bonham Carter
7. The Tale of Beatrix Potter by Margaret Lane
8. Audrey Hepburn: An Elegant Spirit by her son, Sean Hepburn Farrar
9. Confessions by St. Augustine
10. Girl Meets God: A Memoir by Lauren F. Winner

honorable mention: Shadow Warriors: Inside the Special Forces by Tom Clancy (I don't know that this actually qualifies as a biography but it kind of is. . . and it's a great read)

I am working on a new one called The Inklings which may have made the list if I were done with it. I also have a few Reagan bios that have not been read yet including one that speaks about his friendship w. Margaret Thatcher. May just have to make a political bios list later. . .

20 December 2010

17 December 2010

Book list Numerus Three

Out of town but still wanted to get a list out. It is kind of a cop-out list but hey, I am hanging with my sisters so I am not going to spend all day on the computer. . .

Top ten fantasy novels

1. Phantastes by George MacDonald
2. Return of the King by J.R.R. Tolkien
3. The Great Divorce by Jack Lewis
4. The Two Towers by Tolkien
5. Lilith by MacDonald
6. The Fellowship of the Ring by Tolkien
7. The Pilgrim's Progress by John Bunyan
8. A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L'Engle
9. The Hobbit by Tolkien
10. Alice In Wonderland by Lewis Carroll

Okay, I kind of broke the rules here but I had to.

14 December 2010

Book List Numero Due

. . .the very nature of Joy makes nonsense of our common distinction between having and wanting. -c.s. ‘Jack’ lewis

Top ten books written by c.s. lewis. I will label the non-fiction.

1. Till We Have Faces
2. The Great Divorce
3. A Grief Observed NF ; amazing, AMAZING perspective on death and life in Christ, it changed the way I look at both
4. The Pilgrim's Regress
5. Mere Christianity NF ; this book (along with the Holy Spirit, of course) brought me out of absolute rebellion and back to Christ
6. The World's Last Night and other essays; I especially love Religion and Rocketry, mainly NF
7. Surprised by Joy: The Shape of My Early Life NF
8. The Dark Tower and other stories; every story in this collection is astoundingly great, in my humble opinion
9. That Hideous Strength; though this is the 3rd book in the space trilogy it is by far, the best
10. The Screwtape Letters including Screwtape Proposes a Toast

I must admit that I have a couple NF that I have started and never finished including: Miracles, the Four Loves and the Problem of Pain. When I finally finish those I may need to switch the list up a bit. Also, following my rules I did not include any of the Narnia books which I ADORE!!

Book List Numero Uno!

Okay, so I agonized over what to make this 1st book list. I am still not sure it is the right choice but well, it is MY list for you to take from it what you will.
Also, I have set some rules for myself:
~No kiddo books on adult book lists (although what some may call children's literature I may disagree with and vice versa)
~I will DO MY BEST not to repeat books but on certain lists that may be necessary
~I will ONLY include books that I have actually read at some point in my life which may skew the lists a bit because there are definitely some EXCELLENT classics that I have not gotten around to yet
I think that is it so without further ado I give you the First List

Top ten classics with a female lead character:

1. Till We Have Faces by c.s. lewis
2. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
3. Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
4. The Scarlet Letter by Nathanial Hawthorne
5. the Book of Esther from the Bible
6. Antigone by Sophocles
7. Emma by Jane Austen
8. Little Women by Louisa May Alcott
9. Vanity Fair by William Makepeace Thackeray
10. Breakfast at Tiffany's by Truman Capote

So there you go. I welcome comments or other suggestions.

13 December 2010

Why read?

It stimulates your brain in ways that watching television does not.
"* Neuroimaging studies using diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) have revealed regions of cerebral white matter with decreased microstructural organization (lowerfractional anisotropy or FA) among poor readers. We examined whether 100 hr of intensive remedial instruction affected the white matter of 8- to 10-year-old poor readers. Prior to instruction, poor readers had significantly lower FA than good readers in a region of the left anterior centrum semiovale. The instruction resulted in a change in white matter (significantly increased FA), and in the very same region. The FA increase was correlated with a decrease in radial diffusivity (but not with a change in axial diffusivity), suggesting that myelination had increased. Furthermore, the FA increase was correlated with improvement in phonological decoding ability, clarifying the cognitive locus of the effect. The results demonstrate the capability of a behavioral intervention to bring about a positive change in cortico-cortical white matter tracts."

Altering Cortical Connectivity: Remediation-Induced Changes in the White Matter of Poor Readers; authors Timothy A. Keller and Marcel Adam Just
Center for Cognitive Brain Imaging, Department of Psychology, Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, PA 15213, USA

It sparks your imagination to actually work.
It is enjoyable.
You can not curl up on the couch with a cup of tea and a television in your lap. (I do NOT want to hear about how you could do it with an IPOD; that is hardly the point!)
There are a vast number of wonderful books that have been written and never been made into movies.
You can do it anytime since it will not wake anyone in the house.
You can do it anywhere; well do NOT do it in the car but other than that. . . and not at a wedding or a funeral. Okay, okay there are some places you should NOT do it but. . .
It may prevent Alzheimer's disease.
"Reading Reduces the Risk of Alzheimer’s

In his landmark study into Alzheimer’s disease, The Nun Study, David Snowdon reviewed biographies that the nuns wrote in their early twenties. He discovered that the grammatical complexity and idea density in the autobiographies reflected the woman’s potential for Alzheimer’s late in life (the nuns who entered the study had to be at least 75 years of age).

Nuns with higher grammatical complexity and idea density in their writing were less likely to develop Alzheimer’s in old age. Those nuns whose autobiographies were less complex were at a greater risk for developing Alzheimer’s.

When Snowdon and his colleague Susan Kemper shared their findings with another colleague, his response was not that of a scientist but that of a father. “What does this mean for our children?” Happily, their response provides a simple solution; read to your children.

The key that reveals a person’s potential resistance to Alzheimer’s is revealed by a person’s ability to write with a high level of idea density. Idea density relies on vocabulary and reading comprehension. Susan Kemper said it this way “the best way to increase vocabulary and reading comprehension is by starting early in life, by reading to your children.” (117)"

This one reminds me to tell you: READ TO YOUR KIDS!
It actually slows the aging process.
It prevents wrinkles and age spots and varicose veins. . . okay I made that up.
Just try reading. For recommendations try the lists I will begin making up with different labels in later posts. I welcome any comments of books you love.
Thanks to Duff for the idea for this latest post.