One Catholic Life Blog

The Prestige by Christopher Priest

The Prestige by Christopher Priest

The performer is of course not a sorcerer at all, but an actor who plays the part of a sorcerer and who wishes the audience to believe, if only temporarily, that he is in contact with darker powers. The audience, meantime, knows that what they are seeing is not true sorcery, but they suppress the knowledge and acquiesce to the selfsame wish as the performer’s. The greater the performer’s skill at maintaining the illusion, the better at this deceptive sorcery he is judged to be. — The Prestige,...

The Crown Conspiracy

The Crown Conspiracy by Michael J. Sullivan

I picked up The Crown Conspiracy on the Kindle for ninety-nine cents because I was looking for a fun, light-hearted fantasy novel. I was not disappointed. I would describe it as a lighter Fahfrd and the Grey Mouser, more akin to books by David Eddings, Terry Brooks, or Katherine Kurtz. You know the kind I mean, stories where the characters talk like us but wear period costumes and use magic. I know that some fantasy readers turn their noses up at such novels, but sometimes I just want...

Worlds Elsewhere by Andrew Dickson

Nonfiction November Week 5: New to My To-Be-Read List

Nonfiction November comes to an end this week with a final question hosted by Lory at The Emerald City Book Review: It’s been a month full of amazing nonfiction books! Which ones have made it onto your TBR list? Be sure to link back to the original blogger who posted about that book! Nonfiction November has been very good to me for book recommendations. The following six books were the most interesting books I came across this past month as I tried to keep up with all the...

The Bridge of San Luis Rey

Classics Book Club #4: The Bridge of San Luis Rey by Thornton Wilder

“Why did this happen to those five?” If there were any plan in the universe at all, if there were any pattern in a human life, surely it could be discovered mysteriously latent in those lives so suddenly cut off. Either we live by accident and die by accident, or we live by plan and die by plan. I’ve had The Bridge of San Luis Rey by Thornton Wilder on my to-read list for probably twenty years. I had vaguely heard of it growing up, but it really...

Tolkien Artist and Illustrator

Nonfiction November Week 4: Be the Expert – Reading Lord of the Rings

This week’s Nonfiction November discussion prompt is hosted by Julz: Three ways to join in this week! You can either share 3 or more books on a single topic that you have read and can recommend (be the expert), you can put the call out for good nonfiction on a specific topic that you have been dying to read (ask the expert), or you can create your own list of books on a topic that you’d like to read (become the expert). One type of nonfiction that I...

Christ and the Good Thief by Titian

Famous Last Words: Homily for the Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe

A while back a friend shared a website with me that was a collection of the last words of famous people, and it was very interesting. Some of their final words were humble. For example, Leonard DaVinci said, “I have offended God and mankind because my work did not reach the quality it should have.” Some tried to be prophetic. Nostradamus, for instance said, “Tomorrow I will not be here.” He was right. And there were some who didn’t realize they were speaking their final words. The last...

Lord of the World

Classics Club Book #3: Lord of the World by Robert Hugh Benson

The two Cities of Augustine lay for him to choose. The one was that of a world self-originated, self-organised, and self-sufficient, interpreted by such men as Marx and Hervé, socialists, materialists, and, in the end, hedonists, summed up at last in Felsenburgh. The other lay displayed in the sight he saw before him, telling of a Creator and of a creation, of a Divine purpose, a redemption, and a world transcendent and eternal from which all sprang and to which all moved. Before Fahrenheit 451, before Nineteen Eighty-four,...

S by Doug Dorst and J.J. Abrams

Nonfiction November Week 3: Book Pairing

Nonfiction November continues this week with the task of pairing a fiction book and a nonfiction book together. For a summary of last week’s posts about how people choose nonfiction books, check out Rachel’s wrap-up at Hibernator’s Library. And now, on to the question for this third week: This week pair up a nonfiction book with a fiction title. It can be a “If you loved this book, read this!” or just two titles that you think would go well together. Maybe it’s a historical novel and you’d...

The Professor and the Madman by Simon WInchester

Nonfiction November Week 2: Choosing Nonfiction

I really enjoyed last week’s Nonfiction November kick-off. I’ll get to my answers to this week’s questions in a moment, but first here are some of the fascinating titles from other participants that caught my attention (titles are affiliate links to Amazon): The Book: A Cover-to-Cover Exploration of the Most Powerful Object of Our Time by Keith Houston from Louise at Lone Star on a Lark. On the Trail of Genghis Khan: An Epic Journey Through the Land of the Nomads from Nancy at ipsofactodotme As You Wish: Inconceivable Tales...

Three Hearts and Three Lions by Poul Anderson

Three Hearts and Three Lions by Poul Anderson

‘In olden time,’ said Hugi, ‘richt after the Fall, nigh everything were Chaos, see ye. But step by step ’tis been driven back. The longest step was when the Saviour lived on earth, for then naught o’ darkness could stand…’ Three Hearts and Three Lions is one of those classic heroic fantasy novels that satisfies on almost every level. Published originally in 1953 and expanded in 1961, it tells the story of Holger Carlsen, an engineer from Denmark who is suddenly transported from a World War II battlefield...

The House on the Borderland

Classics Club Book #2: The House on the Borderland by William Hope Hodgson

The House on the Borderland is an eerie novel that ultimately leaves many questions unanswered. Written in 1908, it is often cited as an influence on writers like H.P. Lovecraft and Terry Pratchett, and it is listed in Fantasy: The 100 Best Books, edited by James Cawthorn and Michael Moorcock. It also becomes my second finished book in the Classics Club Challenge. I really wanted this book to be good. The beginning starts off promising: two men on a fishing holiday in a remote part of Ireland discover...

Nonfiction November

Nonfiction November Week 1

Nonfiction November looks like a fun event to participate in, plus it gives me an incentive to keep writing, so count me in. Here is this week’s discussion prompt: Your Year in Nonfiction: Take a look back at your year of nonfiction and reflect on the following questions – What was your favorite nonfiction read of the year? What nonfiction book have you recommended the most? What is one topic or type of nonfiction you haven’t read enough of yet? What are you hoping to get out of...