How to describe this unusual novel? Here’s a possible list:
-No over all plot.
-Several stories about individuals scattered throughout, e.g. read about a person and event, then many pages later back to that person and the consequences of the event(s).
-Short philosophical musings/vignettes interspersed here and there. One reviewer counted 116.
-One common theme relates to the title, Flights, in that in most of the “stories” people are traveling or have traveled on quests for “meaning” or escape from a cumbersome reality.
I learned the following from reading this book:
-Per his request Chopin’s heart was taken from his body. His body was buried in Paris but his sister secretly transported his heart in a jar of special preservation liquid back to Poland, the land of his birth.
-A Dutch anatomist discovered the Achilles tendon after dissecting his own amputated leg.
-Plastination is the method used in anatomy to preserve bodies and body parts. Several characters in the book make their living or are obsessed with this process.
This is not a book for those who prefer relaxing reading or for the “faint of heart”.
Note: The author won the Nobel Prize in literature in 2018. This book won the Mann Booker for translated literature from all over earth in 2018. I plan to read another of her books–have now read two of them–but since the other one in English is 1000 pages long rather guess it might take more than a week for me to read it. This is actually the 11th book I have read to date in 2023 but did not start blogging about them so two are missing in the blog posts,
A couple of days ago a friend posted research regarding success and high school grades on Facebook. The research cited indicates that there is no correlation between high school grades and success later in life. The researchers measured success by the amount of money earned. Admittedly they discussed innovation and creativity and claimed school mainly teaches obedience to cultural norms. Although to some extent I agree with their discussion of creativity, etc. and cultural norms. I do not agree that success equates to the amount of money a person earns.
This evening I attended graduation for the seniors I taught this year. Both the valedictorian and salutatorian were students in my dual credit class. To my amazement, in her speech the valedictorian discussed this very topic. She encouraged her classmates to see success as two things. First, she cited happiness and encouraged them to pursue what they love, that for which they feel a calling, a passion, and if they do not have that feeling yet, to find it because doing what a person loves brings that person happiness. Second, she encouraged them to help others discover happiness, to serve. She never once mentioned money.
Snow falls in a
If the roads become
too awful, I will
An awful experience?
Beauty lies outside the windows and
in my heart.
Heat radiates from the fire.
Food fills my refrigerator.
Music bursts from CDs’.
Christmas always brings delight and
You do not have to be a Christian to
feel the meaning: