How We Weep and Laugh at the Same Thing

GoodReads ★★★★ Michel de Montaigne was apparently one the most important French Renaissance philosophers, but I had never heard of the good man before picking up this Little Black Classic which bundles six of his essays.I was pleasantly surprised. His ideas were not particularly shocking (at least not today) but the meandering way in which... Continue Reading →

The Master Magician

GoodReads ★★★ This series started of really nice with the Paper Magician, but in this third book, The Master Magician, Ceony seriously started to annoy me. Her tricks maybe weren't exactly new - rushing into danger and just hoping that everything will work out in the end just to name something - but I would... Continue Reading →

The Wife of Bath

GoodReads ★★★ We didn't read this in class. Of course, we talked about the Canterbury Tales but actually reading it, no. That's why I was pleased to see it as a part of the Little Black Classics, giving me the opportunity to read a small part without necessary the feeling that I should read it... Continue Reading →

The Eve of St Agnes

GoodReads ★★★ Having never read anything by Keats before, but having heard a lot of it, I was really looking forward to this collection of five of his poems.The poem of the title is the longest and it is, as his other poems, very visual. It really tells a story, and while this is a... Continue Reading →

How to Use Your Enemies

GoodReads ★★ This is more than a guide on How to Use Your Enemies, it is at the same time a guide on How to Use Your Friends (considering you have some left after behaving like the author suggested). It was so manipulative that it was actually an awkward read for me.It is compared to... Continue Reading →

A Cup of Sake Beneath the Cherry Trees

GoodReads "It is a most wonderful comfort to sit alone beneath a lamp, book spread before you, and commune with someone from the past whom you have never met..."Kenkō ★★ If I ever wanted to read a complete collection of random thoughts, I would seriously consider a full edition of Yoshida Kenko's work. The short... Continue Reading →

On the Beach at Night Alone

GoodReads ★★ This one wasn't for me. I had of course heard of the author, but had never read anything by him. Based on this collection, a selection from Leaves of Grass, I don't think I will either.With the Little Black Classics you never know up front what to expect, there have been some very... Continue Reading →

Three Tang Dynasty Poets

GoodReads ★★★★ This is exactly why I thought the Penguin Little Black classics would be great. This edition contains three poets from the Tang Dynasty and I will be the first to admit that it wasn't something that I would have usually picked.But I'm very glad that I read it now, because I was most... Continue Reading →

A Modest Proposal

GoodReads ★★★★ I first came in contact with Swift's Modest Proposal in school where we read certain passages. I was immediately smitten with the nice way in which he wrote his satire. It is so businesslike that it is almost hard at first glance not to agree with his arguments and business strategy. That is,... Continue Reading →

Wailing Ghosts

GoodReads ★★ According to the blurb Wailing Ghosts collects some of the most wonderful stories in Chinese literature. Unfortunately for me, I didn't like them. With some stories I was wondering if I was missing the clue, because the end was rather abrupt and not funny. At other times I was wondering if time might... Continue Reading →


GoodReads ★★★ Traffic consists of two different pieces. The first is a speech where John Rushkin is asked to talk about an Exchange but he just tells them he couldn't care less and talks about other things instead. This part was mildly interesting, but in fact very forgettable.The second half was worse, and I had... Continue Reading →

Aphorisms on Love and Hate

GoodReads ★★★ I was a little bit afraid to start this collection of Aphorisms, because the last one I read, another one of the Little Black Classics, was a real disappointment. I'd previously only seen a little bit of Nietzsche in class, but was curious to what he had to say.I can only speak for... Continue Reading →

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