Marco's readings

Reading is one of my favorite hobbies. This page lists all the books that I have finished reading in 2002.
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L'Italia dei Comuni
by Indro Montanelli (2008)
My review: E' interessante riscoprire la storia del Bel paese raccontata in maniera accessibile e informale da Montanelli e Gervaso. Sfortunatamente, come per i volumi precedenti, un periodo storico relativamente lungo e' riassunto in un numero relativamente piccolo di pagine con il risultato ch'e' facile perdersi tra tanti nomi, eventi e date. (★★)
Started: Dec 13 2002 Finished: Dec 21 2002
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (Harry Potter, #3)
by J.K. Rowling (2004)
My review: I quite enjoyed reading the book, but it lacks the originality of the first volume. It's hard to come up with novel ideas to keep the sage intriguing and surprising. (★★★)
Started: Dec 06 2002 Finished: Dec 12 2002
The Fig Eater
by Jody Shields (2001)
My review: I usually am not really fond of mystery books, but I quite enjoyed this book, a mix of historical fiction, psychological introspection, mystery, and feminism. It is inspired by one of the most famous and controversial of Freud's cases (Dora's case, a girl that discovers the father infidelity with the father of his best friend, the same friend that later tries to seduce Dora), and it starts with the body of a young girl found dead in the middle of a park in turn-of-the-century Vienna... (★★★★)
Started: Oct 23 2002 Finished: Dec 05 2002
The Day of the Tempest (Dragonlance: Dragons of a New Age, #2)
by Jean Rabe (2002)
My review: This second volume of the ""dragons of a new age" trilogy is as entertaining and fast-paced as the first one. I am still a little put off by the dramatic changes introduced in the Dragonlance 5th age, but this did not prevent me from appreciating the book. (★★★)
Started: Oct 13 2002 Finished: Oct 22 2002
2010: Odyssey Two (Space Odyssey, #2)
by Arthur C. Clarke (1997)
My review: Almost 20 years after the first book, Clarke wrote this sequel. I was quite surprised to realize how much the world changed in those 20 years just reading the two books one after the other. The world geopolitical balance is changed: for example China enters as a third super power in the second book, and it is not even mentioned in the first. The civil right movement worked hard for a world where every person is given a fair change whatever his or her color, religion, national origin, sexual orientation or identity, etc: for example in the second book a character in the Leonov spaceship is gay, and treated with all the respect he deserve. After reading the two books I was filled with hope and faith in human progress. (★★★★)
Started: Oct 07 2002 Finished: Oct 12 2002
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (Harry Potter, #2)
by J.K. Rowling (1999)
My review: Do not get me wrong, I enjoyed reading this book, it was very hard to put down. This said, it lacks the originality of the first volume of the saga: it really feels like a rehashed version of it. (★★★)
Started: Oct 01 2002 Finished: Oct 06 2002
by Stephen King
My review: As a young teenager I was quite fond of Stephen King's books. I consider some of them remarkable literary achievements for the ability of digging into the hidden folds of the human psyche, and the adroit investigation of psychosis and fear. I picked up this book on my way to the airport, expecting something as good as the books I read many years before. I was quite disappointed instead by the flat story-line and the lack of any psychological investigation of the various characters. (★★)
Started: Aug 29 2002 Finished: Sep 30 2002
Northanger Abbey
by Jane Austen (2005)
My review: I was expecting a sappy novel when I picked up this book, on the contrary I discovered a novel full of wit and sarcasm. It is the story of a young girl turning into a woman in a world that is surprisingly similar to the contemporary one. (★★★)
Started: Jun 09 2002 Finished: Aug 29 2002
The Dawning of a New Age (Dragonlance: Dragons of a New Age, #1)
by Jean Rabe (2002)
My review: The Ansalon of the new age trilogy is dramatically different from the classic one featured in the previous trilogies by Weis and Hickman. There is really little in common, and this will probably put off every classic Dragonlance fan. This said, the book is quite entertaining, and a pleasure to read. I liked the effort of the author in trying to be inclusive. The book features a diverse set of characters of different ethnicity and with disabilities. (★★★)
Started: Jul 25 2002 Finished: Jul 28 2002
The Soulforge (Dragonlance: Raistlin Chronicles, #1)
by Margaret Weis (1999)
My review: If you are looking for something easy to read to relax after a long day at work, this may be what you are looking for. For the Dragonlance fans, this is a must read book, providing some background on two of the most interesting characters of the chronicle and legends trilogies: the brothers Majere. (★★★)
Started: Jun 03 2002 Finished: Jun 08 2002
2001: A Space Odyssey (Space Odyssey, #1)
by Arthur C. Clarke (2000)
My review: A classic of sci-fi literature, epic in its scope, very original and enthralling. Clarke is able to keep his readers in awe, on the edge of some spiritual and cosmological revelation. The sarcastic humor of the author is the perfect icing on the cake. (★★★★)
Started: May 28 2002 Finished: Jun 02 2002
Dragons of a Fallen Sun (Dragonlance: The War of Souls, #1)
by Margaret Weis (2001)
My review: The two previous Dragonlance trilogies by Weis and Hickmans are among the favorite books of my childhood. I was literally thrilled to discovered that a new trilogy was available, set in the same world, and featuring the same beloved characters. I expected a sequel of "the second generation". On the contrary a lot has changed, and the reader should first read the "dragons of a new era" trilogy to really enjoy and understand what's happening in this book. (★★★)
Started: May 21 2002 Finished: May 27 2002
L'Italia dei secoli bui: Il Medio evo sino al Mille
by Indro Montanelli (2008)
My review: Un'interessante introduzione alla storia italiani durante il medioevo, raccontata in maniera accessibile e piacevole. L'unico limite nasce dal fatto che un solo libro copre un periodo storico lungo e compleasso, con il risultato che a molti avvenimenti non e' accordata la necessaria attenzione. (★★)
Started: May 01 2002 Finished: May 21 2002
Storia di Roma
by Indro Montanelli (1988)
My review: Un'interessante introduzione alla storia di uno dei piu' grandi imperi del passato, raccontata in maniera accessibile e piacevole. (★★★)
Started: Feb 13 2002 Finished: Apr 15 2002
The Fellowship of the Ring (The Lord of the Rings, #1)
by J.R.R. Tolkien (2003)
My review: I read this book translated in Italian as a young teenager. I did not like it too much then, probably because the translation was poor. I enjoyed reading it more the second time, in its original language. The plot is intriguing and epic, but some parts of the book are just too slow paced (e.g. all he Tom Bombadil segment). (★★★)
Started: Dec 06 2001 Finished: Apr 01 2002