Monday, March 1, 2010

On my bookshelf

A couple of months ago, I made a decision to read more. As someone who spends much of his day reading - for school, work, religious study, leisure - that may seem like an odd commitment to make. Like many of you, I probably spend more of my day reading than any other activity; save sleep, perhaps. Yet, once you strip away the reading I must do, for school, work and prayer, the rest - mostly news items, editorials, blogs of interest - are not the sort of quality reading I would like to do. Excellent blogging is rarefied, and even among those elite, most today specialize in hyperlinked snipets, eager to demonstrate or respond or relate this or that, as quickly as possible, to impart their message and keep moving, and with little reflection.

Yet, when was the last time you reminisced with a friend about a very special, captivating blog post from several years back? Sure, it's happened that I've referred to some excellent blog posts again and again, on occasion, but such treasures are rare indeed! We may discuss them for a day or two, but blog posts reflect the rapid, dynamic pulse of life, the agenda of the day, more often driven by mass media and popular culture than private initiative or lasting insight or raw intellectual inertia.

So, I've begun to read more, more books, that is; as I used to do, before I had imagined blogging. I've posted the more recent items under the "Books" section, at the bottom right of the layout. I may even write a review or two; certainly, several of them deserve one. My interests are non-fiction, primarily - history, spirituality, biography - something of use with which to tame the future. The choices of focus are strategic - Jewish history, Jewish faith, Islam, Arab history. Notice a trend?

I welcome suggestions. A wishlist gathers, and a bookshelf awaits...


  1. How right you are, Victor. Reading books, especially worthy ones, is an occupation too many of us don't spend enough time at.

    Move Amos Oz's Love and Darkness to the top of the list. You'll like it. Especially as it starts (chronologically) in Russia, and moves from there.


  2. #9 on my Amazon wishlist. I went on a book buying spree last week. Now I just have to read them all.

  3. Victor
    the tension is becoming unbearable - if you are so absent because you are over the head into your new books couldn't you at least give a short report every night, morning midday or any other hour what you have learned experienced exasperated by or enjoyed while doing it?


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On My Bookshelf