My Favorite Lit-Blog Things: Christmas Eve

I have alluded to my interest in science, so I was drawn to this article about multiverses and the implications for the “fine-tuning” argument. Whether you will find it as fascinating as I did likely depends on quarks excite you or bore you. This is book related. One of my recent non-fiction reads was David Deutsch’s The Fabric of Reality which explains the multiverse theory.

The City Journal has a very nice, short piece on Louis Armstrong and what a wonderful human being he was.

This piece on E.M. Forster, while acknowledging that Forster “was hardly innocent of the prejudices of his [upper] class”, concludes that he “still managed to transcend them” with a message “of love, of tolerance, of connection.”

John Self provides us: “Twelve from the Shelves: My Books of 2009”

While guest-blogging at The Elegant Variation, Katherine Taylor provided links to several lists of “best books you’ve never read” as an alternative to boring (i.e. New York Times) “best of 2009” lists.

I wish you all a Merry Christmas. My own, hopefully not boring, summary of my 2009 year in reading will be up on New Year’s Day. But I will be posting additional reviews between now and then. Cheers!


5 Responses to My Favorite Lit-Blog Things: Christmas Eve

  1. Oooh, the multiverse theory. I find that fascinating as well. Are you going to review David Deutsch’s book? Or did I miss that one?

  2. Kerry says:

    Perhaps I should review it, though I am hardly qualified. I can tell you that I really enjoyed it. But if you are interested, here is an excellent synopsis and critical review of The Fabric of Reality by an actual physicist.

    I may try to write something up over the holidays, if I think I can say anything more helpful than: Go read it, it is absolutely great!

  3. I’d be interested in your thoughts on the multiverse book too Kerry.

    Oddly enough, that concept is central to one book I wrote up, Sputnik Caledonia by Andrew Crumey, and tangential to another, Night Train by Martin Amis. I linked in my write up of the Amis to a Larry Niven short SF story on the topic too.

    It’s interesting stuff. Crumey makes great use of it blending literary and science fiction to great effect. Amis only mentions it in passing, though it is certainly one of the points touched on in Night Train, and of course it’s an SF staple.

  4. Oh, I forgot to say, you’re definitely qualified to review it. I suspect the book is for an educated lay audience, rather than fellow physicists, I think it’s very much fair to judge it if so on how it works for such an audience.

  5. Kerry says:


    Thanks for reminding me of Sputnik Caledonia. I had decided to read that one after you pointed it out to me before, but have not picked up a copy. I definitely will now, particularly given the multiverse connections.

    You are right that I am the target audience, or part of the target audience, for The Fabric of Reality, but, not being a trained, practicing physicist, I cannot say with certainty, based on my own knowledge, what aspects of the book are most solid vs. most speculative. However, popular demand, at least by this blog’s standards, requires I review it. That’s good because I will enjoy writing something about it.

    The bottom line will be that I definitely recommend the book. Thanks for your comments and the Crumey and Amis reminders. I am eager to start the Crumey now. I love the idea of “blending literary and science fiction to great effect”.

    I am trying to read some likely Rooster contenders, but Sputnik Caledonia is going to be my first gift to myself of 2010.

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