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Profile for Jasonín d'Asturies > Reviews

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Content by Jasonín d'Asturies
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Reviews Written by
Jasonín d'Asturies "Jason Preater" (Asturias, Spain)

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Schubert's Winter Journey: Anatomy of an Obsession
Schubert's Winter Journey: Anatomy of an Obsession
Price: £8.96

5.0 out of 5 stars Winter Journey Essentials, 21 Jan. 2016
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This is an excellent book for a number of reasons. Ian Bostridge is an engaging and humane guide to Winterreise. His approach to history and culture is charmingly eclectic and diverse pulling in a broad variety of threads to enrich our understanding not just of Schubert's music and Muller's text, but of the historical context, the cultural trail that leads down to the present day and many a learned and literate diversion.

This does not become piece-meal because the book is structured around the songs and he uses a life-time's experience of interpreting the music to root his observations in the score, the text and the emotional understandings that underpin his singing. Each chapter starts with the text of the relevant song in German and English: thank you very much!

I highly recommend the book to anyone who has been captured by Schubert's marvelous song-cycle. Bostridge is a well-read and curious person who does a good job of guiding us through the series without appearing like a pompous know-all. Well illustrated and clearly presented.

If he could write another book on Shwanengesang I would buy it at the drop of a hat.


5,000 Years of Laughing -- Selected Jokes and Satires from Xiao Lin Guang Ji [Translated]
5,000 Years of Laughing -- Selected Jokes and Satires from Xiao Lin Guang Ji [Translated]
Price: £1.19

3.0 out of 5 stars A few titters here, no gut laughs., 29 Dec. 2015
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The English is a bit wonky, but it's good to have a few jokes. Doctors get a pasting. I was a bit surprised that the wisdom literature wasn't fair game for satire. But it is a very short book!

I read the whole thing in about 15 minutes.


The Narrow Road to the Deep North
The Narrow Road to the Deep North
Price: £4.99

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good writing marred by tum-ti-tum heroics, 30 May 2015
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This was OK I suppose. I liked the love affair most and thought that turning Dorrigo into a hero of the camps was the least convincing part of the whole thing. It seems strange that I, as an Englishman, should be reading an Australian book and finding it lacking because of its hero myth: I just assumed that Australians were past all that, were more down-to-earth and, well, common-sense.


Charles Olson
Charles Olson
by Tom Clark
Edition: Paperback

5.0 out of 5 stars Olson was a giant, and he keeps getting bigger., 30 May 2015
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This review is from: Charles Olson (Paperback)
This is an excellent biography of Charles Olson who has the magnificent verbal and intellectual expansiveness of Coleridge with all that implies of obsession, appetite and addiction. Olson's astonishing persona parades through the mid twentieth-century reflecting and refracting the times with all its sexism, mytho-mania and social change. Carmen thought he was a boorish buffoon, a disaster of a man; I continue to warm to him more and more, loving a man who can sit in his garret in the middle of his polis practically starving and freezing and keep thinking that ideas are what is important. Now reading the Maximus poems- powerful.


The Maias (Dedalus European Classics)
The Maias (Dedalus European Classics)
Price: £9.45

4.0 out of 5 stars The adulterous posh and their poets in Portugal, 30 May 2015
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Very enjoyable read about a decadent nineteenth-century Portugal where an entirely useless monied class dedicates its time and energy to hypocrisy: vain semi-social flim flam and adulterous affairs with other men's wives. The suffocating atmosphere of pointlessness eventually tightens around an incestuous affair that provides the over-arching metaphor in a book that has some passages of elegant writing about the sources of Portuguese poetic and literary thought.


Age Of Revolution: 1789-1848 (History of Civilization)
Age Of Revolution: 1789-1848 (History of Civilization)
Price: £8.99

2.0 out of 5 stars Lazy publishing with many annoying errors, 30 May 2015
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This is a classic text and deserves a Kindle edition that has passed under the eyes of a proof-reader. It is lazy publishing and cheap profiteering to sell Kindle editions with so many annoying errors.


La inquisición española: Mito e historia (Spanish Edition)
La inquisición española: Mito e historia (Spanish Edition)
Price: £12.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Worse still is the way that the bigots managed to ..., 4 Mar. 2015
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This is Henry Kamen's classic work on the Spanish Inquisition. He has spent decades investigating the subject, trawling through archive records and trial accounts. Some of his conclusions are surprising. The dynamic that put a small coterie of intolerant hardliners at the centre of policy making in the Spanish Empire, driving the state towards ever harsher approaches is horrifying to read. Worse still is the way that the bigots managed to steamroll over the towns and cities that did not want to have the Inquisition, that wanted to live peacefully with "their" Jews and who, even when they were Christian, did not seem to have a very Catholic grasp of doctrine.

I highly recommend this book to anyone who wants to understand what goes into creating a racist state. The lesson would not be lost in today's world.


Hunger (Gone Book 2)
Hunger (Gone Book 2)
Price: £2.33

3.0 out of 5 stars Cutouts Make Money, 4 Mar. 2015
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This is the second of the Gone series. Michael Grant has done a top-notch job of writing teen novels that read like film proposals. I am more than a little doubtful about the racial stereotyping, the fact that the hero is James Dean with a blonde, saintly girlfriend and a friendly Hispanic sidekick. It all seems a bit- well- fifties. But I guess that is Merka for you.

Anyway this is a good book for the teen library. It is very easy to read and that will encourage kids to read it who wouldn't read any other kind of book and, if you can be bothered to pick apart some of the issues, it could make the basis of a great class discussion.


Perfect Pitch: The Art of Selling Ideas and Winning New Business
Perfect Pitch: The Art of Selling Ideas and Winning New Business

4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars, 4 Mar. 2015
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Good book. Funny too.


The Forever War: Forever War Book 1 (Forever War Series)
The Forever War: Forever War Book 1 (Forever War Series)
Price: £5.99

3.0 out of 5 stars Cute Classic, 4 Mar. 2015
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This is a scifi classic, an easy read. There are some interesting changes in this forever war, which is called that because the distances the soldiers have to go before they are in combat are so great that time has advanced by centuries before they even get there. This means that the hero becomes a time traveller and arrives in a future where there is no heterosexual sex, for example.


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