Saturday, December 31, 2005

WTF, penguins. WTF.

Things I learned from March of the Penguins: Penguins will attack a mourning mother penguin if she tries to steal another female's chick, but they choose to stand by idly and do nothing while a teeny, wimpy bird kills a penguin chick right in front of them.

WTF, penguins. WTF.

I am scarred for life.

Thursday, December 29, 2005

Book Rec: The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini

A friend from school recommended The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini to me. I read it in one sitting last night. It's 371 pages long and I was up to the wee hours in the morning, but I couldn't put it down because it's the best thing I've read in a long time. I would almost think I'm biased, because I have a preference for novels set in different cultures, but many sources have also named it one of the best books this year.

The story focuses on the friendship of two boys in Afghanistan in the 1970s through today, one a privileged child and the other his servant. It contains all of the great themes of literature and some others to go with them: love, betrayal, guilt, fear, redemption, honor, family and friendship, etc. It's one of the most complete modern novels I've read in a long time--from character studies to plot to understanding of a vastly different country, etc. (If you follow the link above for more info, don't read past Amazon's review or else you'll be completely spoiled).

One caution, though. I wouldn't read this book unless you're okay with feeling like you want to cry every 40 or so pages (or, in my case, actually crying...). The book has more than a few disturbing scenes, and worse than that, more than a few truly devastating scenes. It broke my heart on more than one occasion. But don't worry, although I was truly worried there for a while, the book ends on a...hopeful note.

I hope at least one you decide to read it, because then I'll feel like I've done my job! If you do (or have), let me know what you think!