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The Daily Wildcat

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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    Likeable literature

    ASUA President Tommy Bruce peruses the German section of the Main Library. Bruce doesnt really know German, but it made a good photo op.
    ASUA President Tommy Bruce peruses the German section of the Main Library. Bruce doesn’t really know German, but it made a good photo op.

    Not everyone at the university spends their spare time reading tired textbooks and ho-hum handouts. Many professors have the same tastes in literature as their students. If you’ve ever been curious about what the people around you are reading, look no further. We’ve asked teachers, librarians and even the president of ASUA where they turn to sharpen their knowledge or indulge their imaginations. The results might surprise you.

    I read the following trilogy, repeatedly, for entertainment and fresh perspective. Carl Sagan and Ann Druyan’s “”Shadows of Forgotten Ancestors: A Search for Who We Are”” (1992) explores brilliantly the existential issues surrounding life and its purpose. Richard Adams’ “”Watership Down”” (1972) chronicles wild rabbits on a journey to establish a new warren and the tribulations they face along the way. “”The Plague Dogs”” (1978), also by Adams, narrates two dogs’ escape from an experimental research station and their search for human companionship while pursued by the authorities who fear they carry pandemic diseases. These novels are beautifully written, engaging, thoughtful attempts to examine humans and their dominion over the world through the eyes of animals.

    – David Ortiz Jr. is an associate professor of history and teaches Spanish Civil War and the History of Anarchism in Europe.

    My favorite book is “”Passion, Betrayal and Killer Highlights”” by Kyra Davis. This novel is the second entailment in the series by this author. She is a relatively unknown author with a very unique writing style. I really enjoyed reading this book because the story had a lot of twists and turns and you never quite knew what was going to happen next. The novel was very fun and easy to read. It grabbed my attention early on and kept me laughing. The plot basically depicts the life of the main character, Sophie Kratz, and her struggles with finding the real killer of her sister’s husband because her sister was being framed for the murder. The main protagonist, Sophie, is a very strong character who is easy to like and identify with.

    – Monique Bell is a psychology senior who works nights at the UA Main Library as a student supervisor.

    My “”must read”” is “”A Soldier of the Great War”” by Mark Helprin. First published in 1991 and recently reprinted in 2005, the story sounds simple. After a bizarre event on a trolley in Rome, a 74-year-old with a limp (Alessandro Giuliani) and a young factory worker (Nicolo) begin a 70-kilometer walk together. The walk itself is mostly uneventful, but Alessandro has ample time to tell Nicolo about his life. That story is funny and terribly sad and incredibly uplifting and often all of those within 10 pages. It is filled with wonderful prose on topics such as the Italian countryside or ice climbing in Austria. The underlying theme is the horrors of The Great War (World War I) and their intense impact on his life. Helprin’s resounding message is that no matter what happens to you, life is still worth living. As a reader, you hope the book never ends, since Helprin is clearly a virtuoso with a pen.

    – Drew Milsom is a senior lecturer in the physics department and teaches Physics 103: Intro to Physics II, Physics 142: Introduction to Optics and Thermodynamics, and Physics 199: Independent Study.

    One interesting book I’ve read recently is “”Suite FranÇõaise”” by Irene Nemirovsky. The author was an already famous novelist in France in the 1930s, who wrote this book just in the few years at the start of WWII. She was Jewish, and died in Auschwitz in 1942. Her daughters were hidden by friends and survived, and one of them “”discovered”” the book in a suitcase a few years ago. The novel itself captures the panic and human reaction to the fall of France, and how various people reacted to these events. It is extremely well written, capturing the details of the place, the people and their emotional life. It shows humans in all their glory, vainglory and unpleasantness. The book ends with notes detailing what happened to Nemirovsky, her husband and children in the difficult years leading up to her death, and their survival. Quite a story!

    – Lynn Nadel is a physics professor who teaches Physics 299: Independent Study, Physics 498: Senior Capstone and Physics 506B: Found of Cognitive Psychology.

    Does it really get any better than this!?!?!?!? Page after glorious page of AMAZING information and spectacular pictures of The University of Arizona! I can sit there and open a book filled with the school that I live and breathe! I feel the Wildcat spirit every time I snuggle up in my cardinal red and navy blue PJs and open my UA Viewbook! Whenever I am away from campus you can bet your bottom dollar (I) bring my UA Viewbook with me so I can keep campus close to my heart! It’s a book about UA! Enough said! GO CATS! BEAR DOWN!

    – Tommy Bruce is the president of ASUA

    “”The Name of the Rose”” is probably the most acclaimed novel by author Umberto Eco.ÿThe basic plot involves a series of mysterious murders in a 14th century Benedictine abbey.ÿA Franciscan monk named William of Baskerville, and his apprentice, Adso of Melk, are called in to investigate.ÿWilliam uses his exemplary deductive skills to unravel the mystery, and the many secrets of the abbey.

    As a mystery novel, “”The Name of the Rose”” is an excellent read.ÿHowever, the medieval ideas and events that provide the framework, and a good deal of the story, are the compelling part of the novel.ÿEco’s outstanding narrative style and descriptive method allow the reader to be immersed into the early 14th century, and his robust descriptions of religious iconography are incredible.ÿI first read this novel when I was 14 years old, and I have loved medieval European history ever since.

    – Scott Kossel works at the Main Library during the day as an information associate.

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