Share good ideas and conversation.   Login, Join Us, or Take a Tour!

I am reading:

> The Cold Commands by Richard K. Morgan. He normally writes sci-fi, but also did a fantasy trilogy, collectively called A Land Fit for Heroes (of which this is the second). Morgan excels at making characters that are flawed, even shitty, but still people you want to know. He also does some great world-building, and is a master at showing-not-telling. This series definitely plays with the usual fantasy tropes (not least by having the main character be gay, which is generally as well-accepted as you'd expect).

> Steppenwolf by Herman Hesse. His prose is amazing, and I've wanted to check out this "most violently misunderstood" (in Hesse's words) of his books. The plight of the titular Steppenwolf (actually named Harry Halleck) is one of undesired isolation and disconnect, and it's hard not to relate.

> Don Quijote. I've been reading it to my daughter at bedtime (who knows it as "the Spanish book"). She doesn't speak Spanish yet, but likes how it sounds. I'm enjoying it (it's one of those books I've probably started a dozen times), and it seems like my reaction to the main character is different every time. There's actually something Trumpian in don Quijote's madness: deciding he wants things to be a way and forcing that view onto the world while refusing to see any evidence to the contrary. Maybe we should start referring to John Kelley as Sancho Panza.

> Still working on the NT, albeit much more slowly, and also chipping away at Coptic. Also on the spiritual front, I'm working on translating the Spiritual Guide written by Miguel de Molinos, a 17th-century Spanish priest and mystic who was a proponent of Quietism (which emphasized quiet listening and contemplation over meditation and prayer). It's pretty neat. I also found an archive of a bunch of the works by Origen as well, and his theology is fascinating. That's a ways off, as I definitely need more Greek practice before I get there.

> Also listening to the audio book of Ron Chernow's biography of Alexander Hamilton. I got the paper book for Christmas last year, but my ADHD kicked in before I could really finish it. When I saw the audiobook at the library a couple weeks ago, I figured I'd give it a shot. I don't drive as much as I used to what with teleworking a lot, but it's still nice to have (and I got through 3 discs worth during our trip to DC for the weekend).