Table of Contents

Recent Reviews: the five most recent reviews
All Reviews: search all the reviews by subject
Suggestions: crediting those who make them
Quotations: search the quotations file
Haiku: also listed in All Reviews

Dance of Death

by Douglas Preston & Lincoln Child

15 May 2006 book review
by Collie Collier

Do you remember the old Sherlock Holmes stories written by Alfred Conan Doyle? I read them as a child and enjoyed them tremendously. I still enjoy them as light fiction. However, I do not find they stand up literarily to the tests of time and life experience. ... (read more)

Library or Athenaeum:
a collection of literary documents or records kept for reference or borrowing; a place where reading materials are available; a literary association for the promotion of learning.

I've always found the dimly lit, reverent solitude of large libraries to be a magical haven -- a wondrous and mysterious treasure trove of the shared love of learning.

I rather enjoy my small Athenaeum here. If you enjoyed it as well, please let me know.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, the legendary Hypatia of the Library of Alexandria is a hero of mine.

Yes, I know she died horribly at the hands of a fanatic sect of christianity, which burned down the wonderful library with impunity after her brutal torture and murder, due to governmental cowardice or laziness... no one knows what exactly it was, now.

And yes, I always keep the following saying in mind when attempting to share my wonder at learning:

If you make people think they're thinking they'll love you; but if you really make them think they'll hate you.
-- Don Marquis, American journalist, poet, dramatist, & humorist (1878-1937)

So caveat emptor. Enjoy, take pleasure in life-long learning... but also, though I'm sorry to have to say it, fair warning to you all. If you love intelligence and erudition, there will always be those who will fear or resent you, no matter how well-meaning you are.

Recent Reviews

A feed for just the Library reviews: RSS feed for Collie's
Bestiary: the Library

Red Dust

A young white woman returns to her childhood home to bring trial against a confessed murderer, against the backdrop of South Africa's Truth & Reconciliation Commission.

The Corpse Bride

A stop-motion-animated fairy tale of love conquering all.

My Year of Meats

A half-Japanese, half-American documentarian struggles with the morality of mixing fact and fiction, while creating art to imitate life.


Elena, the only female werewolf in the world, must choose between her self-chosen desire to lead a normal human life, and her desire for her Pack and the demands it imposes on her.

Precious Blood

Part of a series of holiday-themed murder mysteries, with an ethnic ex-FBI detective.

Fun facts!
Some famous librarians:
  * Hypatia
  * Lao Tzu
  * Immanuel Kant
  * Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
  * Giacomo Casanova
  * August Strindberg
  * Benjamin Franklin
  * Pope Pius XI
  * Mao Tse-Tung
  * J. Edgar Hoover
  * Jorge Luis Borges (until Perón fired him)
  * and... Batgirl! ;)


The current list of suggested readings. For simplicity, I credit the first person to give a recommendation. I'm happy to thank folks in the review as well.

  • Things A Computer Scientist Rarely Talks About by Donald E. Knuth
    recommended by Lou

If you see a book on my Amazon wish list you'd like to see reviewed, please feel free to send me it -- and thanks!


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Also included is the entire quotes file. Fair warning -- there are a great many of them, in no particular order.

Reviews by Subject

Please select the subject you're interested in, and all my writings which review books, articles, or other media on that theme will appear on the page below for you to chose from: