The History Of The Mohammedan Dynasties In Spain, Volume 2 - Al-Maqqari

Although the Muslims in medieval Spain left behind an expansive literature, little of it has been translated into English (although quite a bit has been translated into Spanish and French). Not only is this a readable and interesting history, but the translator has included a lot of well-chosen excerpts of other works in the appendix. It also deals extensively with the Almohads and the last Emirate of Granada, which both tend to be neglected in English-language scholarship.



Graphic Style: From Victorian To * - Seymour Chwast

Basically, a lot of good examples with some lightweight commentary. More famous pieces mixed in with some really interesting, odd, obscure gems that are, in some cases, seemingly ungooglable.



Peer Gynt Park, Oslo


The Book That Made The Limerick Popular

Read it here.



Homestuck Epilogues Review

Two book-length epilogues to Homestuck which can be read in any order and foreshadow one another. In spite of that, extremely readable. I couldn't put it down. The fact that he pulled that off so smoothly is extremely impressive.

It's also a real bummer. It's littered with hilarious jokes, but reading it was still an intense, uncomfortable look into all the most pathetic and depressing corners of adulthood, blown up to epic proportions, as opposed to the more high-energy, wacky teen drama of the original.

The endings imply more is coming (or maybe not?) so I'm not even sure what kind of rating I can give to this: a perfect score if he manages to follow it up with something of similar quality. Go read it. Unless you haven't read Homestuck yet, in which case, I'm jealous that you get to read it the first time, from the beginning.



Caxton's Canterbury Tales


Another Beautiful Book I've Never Read


Ursula K Le Guin In The 70s, Being Cool As Heck


Grimm's Household Tales - Jacob Grimm and Wilhelm Grimm

The most famous collection of fairy tales, but a long way from being the best. The stories and their messages are weird and unbalanced - not just by the standards of the day - and there are also a couple of antisemitic stories that spoil the whole thing.

When I point something like that out, someone inevitably makes a "it was normal back then" argument, but I've never seen antisemitic stories in any other old folk tale collections and, according to one of the world's top experts, Maria Tatar, no other German collection from the 19th century has any similar stories. Besides that, story books like this are one of the first things to define what normal means for people, and should be held to a very high standard. I'd bet you bottom dollar that most people involved in implementing the Holocaust were introduced to the existence of Jews through this very book. A stain on the genre. A piece of garbage that's best left forgotten.