Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Digging into my old Book Lover's Journal

I think pre-formatted, blank page book review journals may have been more in vogue ten or twelve years ago than they are now. Is it the kind of thing worth dipping into, or will what you see just make you cringe?

July 1997 (I distinctly remember I wrote this while sitting in the backyard on a hot day. Four toddlers played in a wading pool while the baby slept nearby.)

Desiree by Annemarie Selinko (pub. 1953)

Novel of Desiree Clary, affianced to Napoleon before he became famous and found Josephine. Desiree marries Bernadotte (relation to Count assassinated in Cairo, '47 -- Israeli independence?) -- and becomes Queen of Sweden.

Surprisingly good, considering length and laborious detail. Well-arranged, astonishing research; first intro to the Vasas of Sweden. Learned more about Napoleon here than in any book yet. (Prob. not saying much.)

My understanding of the assassination of Count Folke Bernadotte was hazy.

November 1997

Louis XIV: A Royal Life by Olivier Bernier (pub. 1987)

Good. Interesting analysis of 17th vs. 20th century politics and war, and expectations of both. "Freedom" in the 17th century meant the right to state protection of the weak and the poor.

Well now. That's pertinent.