Friday, 23 November 2018

Extra English Book Club

My top 5 books.

Kafka  On The Shore     
Comprising two distinct but interrelated plots, the narrative runs back and forth between both plots, taking up each plotline in alternating chapters.
The odd-numbered chapters tell the 15-year-old Kafka's story as he runs away from his father's house to escape an Oedipal curse and to embark upon a quest to find his mother and sister.[1] After a series of adventures, he finds shelter in a quiet, private library in Takamatsu, run by the distant and aloof Miss Saeki and the intelligent and more welcoming Oshima. There he spends his days reading the unabridged Richard Francis Burton translation of One Thousand and One Nights and the collected works of Natsume Sōseki until the police begin inquiring after him in connection with a brutal murder.

No Samaritan
By Sean Gunning
Debut Poetry Collection.

48 poems about loss, longing, remembrance, letting go, love, gratitude, homelessness, war (not anti-war, not pro-war), the creative process, the struggle to be true, and humour and laughter. I suppose in one way or another they're all love poems--in all it's glory and brokenness.
My all-time favourite book of poems. I highly recommend that you give this up and coming writer a try.

The Joke
Milan Kundra
A very interesting read. This was the first book I read by this author
The novel is composed of many jokes, which have strong effects on the characters. The story is told from the four viewpoints of Ludvik Jahn, Helena Zemánková, Kostka, and Jaroslav. Jaroslav's joke is the transition away from his coveted Moravian folk lifestyle and appreciation. Kostka, who has separated himself from the Communist Party due to his Christianity, serves as a counterpoint to Ludvik. Helena serves as Ludvik's victim and is satirical of the seriousness of party supporters. Ludvik demonstrates the shortcomings of the party and propels the plot in his search for revenge and redemption.

The Book Of Laughter and Forgetting

Milan Kundra
 This book was published in France in 1979. It is composed of seven separate narratives united by some common themes. The book considers the nature of forgetting as it occurs in history, politics and life in general. The stories also contain elements found in the genre of magic realism.
I didn`t really find the book that funny as such, but I would say It is a book I often like to recommend as it gets you thinking about life

The Book Thief 

 Markus Zusak

After the death of Liesel's younger brother on a train to Molching, Liesel arrives at the home of her new foster parents, Hans and Rosa Hubermann, distraught and withdrawn. During her time there, she is exposed to the horrors of the Nazi regime, caught between the innocence of childhood and the maturity demanded by her destructive surroundings. As the political situation in Germany deteriorates, her foster parents conceal a Jewish fist-fighter named Max Vandenburg. Hans, who has developed a close relationship with Liesel, teaches her to read, first in her bedroom, then in the basement. Recognizing the power of writing and sharing the written word, Liesel not only begins to steal books that the Nazi party is looking to destroy, but also writes her own story, and shares the power of language with Max.

Zen motorcycle.jpg
First edition
Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance: An Inquiry into Values (ZAMM), by Robert M. Pirsig, is a book that was first published in 1974. It is a work of fictionalized autobiography and is the first of Pirsig's texts in which he explores his Metaphysics of Quality.
The title is an apparent play on the title of the book Zen in the Art of Archery by Eugen Herrigel. In its introduction, Pirsig explains that, despite its title, "it should in no way be associated with that great body of factual information relating to orthodox Zen Buddhist practice. It's not very factual on motorcycles, either."

Monday, 5 November 2018

English and Irish Idioms / Expressions

A bird never flew on one wing. Expressing the need for a second helping. One is not enough you need a second one, for example, the 2nd drink.

Saturday, 3 November 2018

So…can we start a sentence with and?

So…can we start a sentence with and?  

So the heart of the ban on starting a sentence with ‘and’ or ‘but’ seems to lie in the fact that they are coordinating rather than subordinating conjunctions, and as such are typically used to link elements of equal status within a sentence. The argument against using ‘and’ or ‘but’ to introduce a sentence is that such a sentence expresses an incomplete thought (or ‘fragment’) and is therefore incorrect.
However, this is a stylistic preference rather than a grammatical ‘rule’. If your teachers or your organization are inflexible about this issue, then you should respect their opinion, but ultimately, it’s just a point of view and you’re not being ungrammatical. If you want to defend your position, you can say that it’s particularly useful to start a sentence with these conjunctions if you’re aiming to create a dramatic or forceful effect. As the following examples show, the introductory conjunction gives more weight to the thought expressed in the sentence (a comma would be far less emphatic):
It’s a pretty smart and progressive budget. But do you think those changes go far enough?
Some people are calling this film the worst movie ever. And who are we to argue?
Putting ‘but’ or ‘and’ at the start of a sentence is also an effective way of showing surprise:
Dworkin’s answer is no. But why not?
Who would have thought it? And is it really true?