Asko Korpela: MyeBooks Reviews in Language order
Menu o Time order o Genre order o Book order o Language order
123 o abc o lan o gen
I usually write the summary in English and use Google Translate for other languages. Expose after correcting the machine language blunders. G translates excellently not only into and from Finnish.
01. English 19402. Estonian 1003. Finnish 15404. French 905. German 1006. Hungarian 25
07. Italian 1708. Polish 509. Portuguese 410. Russian 9611. Spanish 1412. Swedish 12
Reviews Total 550

MyeBooks Reviews in English

1. Afrikai: Meszék - Pedagogic stories
2. Alas: Cuentos morales - Monotonous speed reading
3. Andersen: Nye Eventyr og Historier - One of the strangest
4. Andreotti: abático de um cara comum - Andreotti's Margem
5. Asensi: Terra Ferma - Terra ferma (Ramon Llull) (Catalan Edition)
6. Assis: Ressurreição - Simultaneously Obscure and Clear!
7. Atwood: Margaret. The Handmaid's Tale . HMH Books. Kindle Edition. - Not what I expected
8. Balashov: Этика 2019 - A complete masterwork of soulnutrition!
9. Balashov: Ленин - критические заметки - The inheritance of Lenin seen from the today's point of view
10. Balashov: Занимательная философия - Another full course in philosophy
11. Balbo: Della Storia d'Italia - Too detailed for me
12. Balzac: L'élixir de longue vie - Adult fairy tale à la Balzac
13. Balzac: A homályos ügy - A welcome language exercise
14. Balzac: Une ténébreuse affaire - L'affaire restait ténébre
15. Barfelt: Urimelige forventninger - A good-minded family drama
16. Benedek: Édes Anyaföldem! - A praiseworth reading experience
17. Bernhard: El Malogrado - Mountain brook of thoughts
18. Biedrzycki: Polish Emigration - Saksy po polsku - SAKSY PO POLSKU
19. Blake: Immigrating Tears - Blake's crocodile tears
20. Briliant: ь и служба - Derzhavin - dignitary and poet
21. Bronowski: The Ascent Of Man - A good introduction to myself
22. Bulgakov: Собрание сочинений Том 1. Дьяволиада. - A quite terrible book!
23. Bunin: Окаянные дни - How to relate to this kind of book?
24. Cameron: Mathematics The Truth - Widely exceeds my mathematical capacity.
25. Canal: Història mínima de Catalunya - Another revolution
26. Carrol: Alice in Wonderland in Afrikaans - Alice
27. Cassana: El misterio de la Reina Nefertiti - Promising new subgenre
28. Chang: 23 Things They Don't Tell You about Capitalism - Things They Don't Tell You About Capitalism
29. ConanDoyle: Sherlock Holmes kalandjai - Genuine Holmes
30. Dickens: The Posthumous Papers of the Pickwick Club - Mr. Pickwick and Don Quijote
31. DK: Ecoomics Book - DK-Ecomomics - another Giant of Knowledge
32. DK: The Literature Book: Big Ideas - A highway to reading literature
33. DK: Politics Book - Politics
34. DK: The Religions Book (Big Ideas) - Another brilliant DK-source of information
35. Draper: History of the Conflict Between Religion and Science - One of the best books ever
36. Dumas: La dame aux camélias - Superb reading in several respects
37. Dumas: A Fekete Tulipán - Sixtyfive years ago
38. Dumas: Dama Kameliowa - A sad story of love, friendship and money
39. Eca: Contos - Useful in learning language
40. EçadoQueiroz: O Crime do Padre Amaro - Another Dame aux camélias?
41. Engels: Del socialismo utópico al socialismo científico - The path to scientific socialism
42. Enzensberger: El Diablo de los números - Entertaining mathematics
43. Ferrante: Storia del nuovo cognome - Una porzione di spaghetti
44. FoaWilson: Stop Obsessing! - Stop Obsessing!
45. Follett: I giorni dell’eternità - Another favorite Follett
46. Follett: La Caída de los Gigantes - A real master
47. Follett: L’inverno del mondo - Another Nobel class Follett
48. Follett: The Modigliani scandal - A forgery of a forgery of a forgery?
49. Follett: Notre Dame - Another Golden egg by Follett
50. Follett: El hombre de San Petersburgo - El hombre de San Petersburgo
51. Follett: I pilastri della terra - A masterpiece of narration
52. Frank: Het Achterhuis - Distressing and Encouraging
53. FrevertHaupt: 19. SAJANDI INIMENE - One of the most important history books
54. Friedman: Un legado de libertad Milton Friedman en Chile - A common sense argumentation for market economy
55. Fullerton: An Introduction to Philosophy - An excellent path to philosophy
56. Gárdonyi: Ábel és Eszter - Another love story of its own kind
57. Gogol: A köpönyeg - Who could write a modern köpönyeg?
58. Gue: - Timeline of a love story
59. Gurdjieff: Kohtaamisia merkittävien henkilöiden kanssa - Did I become Gurdjian by one stroke?
60. Harari: Homo Deus - Hook line and sinker
61. Harari: De animales a dioses - A rising trend
62. Harari: 21 lecciones para el siglo XXI - The third good Harari!
63. Harkimo: Suoraan sanottuna - Harkimo: Plain talk
64. Harper: How to make Ebook cover - Harper: How to make EBook cover
65. Harrer: Sette anni in Tibet - A high level society of peace
66. Hawking: Black Holes: The BBC Reith Lectures - Did I understand?
67. HitzHart: Self-Publishing - Self-Publishing
68. Hobbes: Leviathan - A handful of pebbles
69. Homeros: The Odyssey - A confusing reading experience
70. Hosseini: Il cacciatore di aquiloni - On the border of tolerating
71. Hourly: Age of Enlightenment - Giant pygmy
72. Hourly: Silk Road A History from Beginning to End - An Artery between East and West
73. Hourly: Silk Road A History from Beginning to End - En artär mellan öst och väst
74. Hurme: Niemi - Brilliant
75. Jarvis: Death and Mr Pickwick - Jarvis-Pickwick
76. Jhingan: History of Economic Thought - History of economic thought
77. Jhingan: Macroeconomic Theory - Jhingan: Macroeconomics
78. Jones: Create an Author website - An important book
79. Justison: Uncle Vanya Study Guide - UncleVanya
80. Kafka: Metamorfosis - A fairytale for adults
81. Kafka: Metamorfosis - Satu aikuisille
82. Kahneman: Thinking - fast and slow - My first psychology book
83. Kant: Kritik der reinen Vernunft - 2. Auflage - Water from gooseback
84. Karamzin: История государства Российского В 12-ти томах - Wide and overwhelming as Mother Russia
85. Kemple: Essential Russian grammar - A lot to be ruminated
86. Keynes: y - Corner stone of modern macroeconomics
87. Koen: Mosambiek avontur - A true pleasant experience
88. Laaneots: Minu Setomaa - Setomaa - Another Leviathan!
89. Lange: Geschichte des Materialismus - Lange, Friedrich Albert. Geschichte des Materialismus
90. Lange: Geschichte des Materialismus - Pompeev
91. Lark: En el país de la nube blanca - I would give even six stars
92. Lenin: Capitalism 1916 - First hand acquaintance with Leninism
93. Livio: L'equazione impossibile - The riddle of an impossible equation
94. Livio: The Golden Ratio - The Most Astonishing Number by Mario Livio
95. Marcondes: O Surgimento da filosofia na Grécia antica - Good commercialization of a grain of truth
96. Marshall: Elements of Economics of Industry - A supplement to Marshall's Principles of Ecconomics
97. Marshall: Principles of Economics - Extremely confusing and dull
98. Mills: Utilitarianism - Justice as utility
99. Moricz: Életem regénye - Moricz Zsigmond: Novel of my life
100. Moricz: Harmatos Rózsa - Good book for learning language
101. Moricz: Esőleső társaság - Learning Hungarian on thin ice
102. Murakami: What I talk about when I talk about running - Me running together with Murakami
103. Murakami: Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage - A real problem rouser
104. Nelson: China History of China - History of an Empire - Much information about China
105. Ojamets: First method languages - Stunningly ingenious language guide
106. Oliveira: Historia de Portugal - Fascinating history book
107. OrtizTagle: Dos mujeres de Al-Andalus - A Muhamedan Matriarch?
108. Pasternak: Доктор Живаго - A confusing masterpiece
109. Perry: Philosophy - Absolute top of a text book
110. Pessoa: Escritos sobre Filosofia - Handbook of Practical Philosophy
111. Pessoa: Escritos sobre Política e Sociedade - Wouldbe wisdom with concepts of hundred years ago
112. Pihlanto: Parkinkokous istuu Alastalon salissa - An excellent summary of this excellent book
113. Piketty: Il capitale nel XXI secolo - A cornerstone of applied economics
114. Pinheiro: Historia alegre de Portugal - New Experience
115. Poe: Novelas Completas - Edgar Allan Poe: Novelas Completas
116. Poe: Válogatott művei - Book served its purpose
117. Polo: Il Milione - Origin of all travel stories
118. Pompeev: Февральский вихрь - How to deal with the revolution?
119. Pompeev: Эти великие полгода - These great six months
120. Pompeev: Эти великие полгода - 20171214 jap-ajk
121. Pompeev: Октябрь семинадцатого - October
122. Pompeev: Октябрь семинадцатого - Different kind of revolution
123. Pompeev: Гулкое эхо России - Here is what I wrote as those seen reading the essay "Tsarskoye Selo":

124. Pompeev: Очерки по истории европейской научной мысли - Essays on the History of European scientific thinking
125. Pompeev: Очерки по истории европейской научной мысли - Essays on the History of European scientific thinking
126. Pompeev: Очерки по истории европейской научной мысли - Very good and useful book
127. Pompeev: Петербург самодержавый - St. Petersburg autocracy
128. Pompeev: Творцы Петергофа - Guaranteed quality
129. Rao: The light SHIFT 21 Simple Ways to Make Your Days... - Ritu Rao: A Boost for Self-Confidence
130. Ray: Learn Italian In 21 DAYS! - Five star book deserving only four stars
131. Ray: Learn Portuguese In 21 DAYS! - Good and concise
132. Rejto: Az ellopott század - Stolen reader
133. Rejto: A három testor Afrikában - An Excursion through Sahara
134. Rejto: A tizennégy karátos autó - Where is the beef?
135. Reverte: Una historia de España - Decreasing disappointment towards the end of the book
136. Rotko: Armas Amalie - Full five star book
137. Rotko: Kass nimega Jossif - Another favorite Rotko
138. Rotko: pa - An incredible seatour
139. Rotko: Vitsataipaleen kulta - Vauhdikas Vitsataipale
140. Schainkman: Sveriges historia - Unique history book
141. Schalkwyk: Teach Yourself Afrikaans - Afrikaans my language number 21
142. Schopenhauer: A Metafísica do Amor - Collected splinters of Schopenhauer
143. Schopenhauer: Il mondo come volontà e rappresentazione - A joyous masterpiece
144. Schopenhauer: Kritik der Kantischen Philosophie. - Kant through the mill of Schope
145. Schopenhauer: Az akarat szabadságáról - Desire of freedom
146. Schopenhauer: Über die vierfache Wurzel des Satzes .. - Wurzel des Satzes - Roots of the sentence
147. Schopenhauer: Az akarat szabadságáról - Desire of freedom
148. Seneca: On the shortness of life - Wisdom and platitudes
149. Smith: The Theory of Moral Sentiments (Illustrated) - Excellent book with imroved Kindle
150. Smith: Wealth of Nations - Wealth of Nations (Optimized for Kindle)
151. Souza: Schopenhauer e os conhecimentos intuitivo e abstrato - Schopenhauer nutcracked
152. Sowa: Jeszcze jeden dzien w raju - My first Polish bilingual
153. Sowa: Zauroczenie - Interesting text but inexcusable layout for reader
154. Sowa: Zla Milosc - Fantastic of its own kind!
155. Stendhal: Vörös és fekete - Reunion with an old favorit
156. Stevevson: Treasure Island - Treasure island - strong if not strangling
157. Strathern: Leibniz in an hour - An outrageous book of an outrageous subject
158. Strathern: Schopenhauer in an hour - What a disappointment!
159. Strukul: I Medici. Una dinastia al potere - A robust bunch for a friend of history
160. Strukul: I Medici. Un uomo al potere - Leonardo (da Vinci) as a lifebuoy
161. Strukul: I Medici. Una regina al potere - Caterina de Medici
162. : Decadenza di una famiglia - Could the River Po end up to desert sand?
163. Szerb: Utas és holdvilág - Good for learning Hungarian
164. Tammsaare: Tõde ja õigus 3 - A very gloomy story
165. Tammsaare: Tõde ja õigus 4 - A low-toned marriage drama
166. Thompson: A Textbook of Higher Mathematics - A completely foolish but interesting book
167. Thoreau: Walden - No common surface?
168. Tolle: The Power of Now - The Power of Now: A Guide to Spiritual Enlightenment
169. Tolstoi: Казаки - How do you distinguish classic from ordinary?
170. Treitschke: Deutsche Geschichte des 19. Jahrhunderts - 1. Teil - Tidbit of German history
171. Treitschke: eutsche Geschichte des 19. Jahrhunderts, 2. Teil - Emerging industry and Zollverein
172. Tshehov: Рассказы. Повести. 1888— 1891 - May you be disappointed with Chekhov?
173. TsurMayer: HTML - Gilad win
174. Tudor: Basics Of Python Programming - Complete Abracadabra
175. Tufayl: El filósofo autodidacta - How animal turned to human being
176. Tuominen: Vladimir Putin: The Whole Story - A completely tremendous book
177. Ussing: Af mit Levned - Educated memoirs
178. Vadell: A expansão econômica e geopolítica da China no século XXI Editora PUC Minas Belo Horizonte 2021 - Interesting exposition of an important present day phenomenon
179. Verga: Mastro-Don Gesualdo - Did not inspire
180. Verne: L'étonnante aventure de la mission Barsac (French Edition). BoD. Kindle Edition. - My fifteenth and sixteenth Verne
181. Verne: A Barsac-expedíció különös története - My fifteenth and sixteenth Verne
182. Verne: L'île Mystérieuse - Sci-fi 150 years ago
183. Verne: Nemo Kapitany - VINGT MILLE LIEUES SOUS LES MERS
184. Verne: A rejtelmes sziget - Sci-fi 150 years ago
185. Verne: Kétévi vakáció - Another South Sea Adventure
186. Voltaire: L'Ingénu - L'Ingénu (French Edition)
187. Vorlander: Volkstümliche Geschichte der Philosophie - A complete course in philosophy
188. Vorländer: Immanuel Kant - Der Mann und das Werk - Kant, a giant of mind and reason
189. Williams: Stoner - Just written my own Stoner
190. Willis: The History of United States: - Just the right amount of information
191. Willis: The History of United States: - Vain oikea määrä tietoa
192. Willis: The History of United States: - Precis rätt mängd information
193. Zaidi: Una breve historia de Islam - An informative book
194. Zotsenko: Аристогратка - What a nice little book!
1. Book hun, summary: ajkNotes

Afrikai: Meszék****

Pedagogic stories

Education through examples and parables from various parts of Africa. A good parable seems to be an effective means of education. Particularly suitable, if the student is analfabetic as can be expected of the inhabitants of the native villages of black Africa represented by the origins of these well-formulated stories. At present there is much ado about youngsters leaving school without knowledge of reading. One can only ask, how important is the skill of reading? So large part of all information is obtained, available in pictures and icons. A picture is worth thousand words goes an old proverb. Information through pictures is good also in all languages of the world. What is the value of this simple truth?
Four stars for these entertaining drops of truth and wisdom. Also five would not be too much.
2. Book spa, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: esp

Leopoldo Alas: Cuentos morales**

Monotonous speed reading

Sorry to say, but I did not get the touch and taste of this book. Soon at the beginning I felt disappointed, because the text has the recommendation of being included in the Amazon collection of "50 obras maestras que debes leer antes de morir", and I had just read another very entertaining text in that colleection, Ibn Tufayl: El filósofo autodidacta. And this collection really includes many incontestable masterpieces of the world literature. This kind of collection is an excellent form of advertisement for each of the works included to be purchased separately as I have done and will be doing hence forward. Too heavy to read in one giant bunch. Another aspect is that I like to write a review of every book I read. No sense in writing a review of 50 books together.
I was annoyed, although appreciated well-formulated text, complete sentences. Then I came to the idea of speed reading. This text is well suitable to it because of just the good formulation for easy understanding. Another factor for this is the present screen size of Kindle, 11 lines with some 60 characters. Maybe it has always existed, but I only found it recently having been offered similar by the Android version of Word, when reading Hungarian books unfortunately not available at Amazon. Kindle reading screen is ok, Word reading screen still distinctly better. Both could easily improved by giving reader the choice of formulate the contents of the screen in settings. Both have too many unnecessary features as well as are still lacking important ones. Shoul be defaults in all books.
Good word for this Alas Cuentos book in addition to its well-formulated text is that an excellent biography of the author is included. So because of these two good things I need not give one but can give two stars as my assessment.
3. Book dan, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Hans Christian Andersen: Nye Eventyr og Historier****

One of the strangest

Having read almost half of the book I had understood almost nothing. Not that I would not understand enough the Danish language, on the basis of the Swedish. As a matter of fact, I was from the beginning completely aware, why I did not understand: the text was complete abrakadabra, a brook of words as you sometimes hear from the mouth of children. As funny in reading as in hearing. No real meaning. But then... some very entertaining fairy tales. Many of them also quite far from the world (of adult, and even more of old people). In this book animals are at least as clever as humans, often more than that. But there are also very instructive stories of real human life. All in all, I read this book completely for the reason to add another, from the youth known language to the list of my ebook languages, no word, however, that I would be able of writing this review in Danish.
Four stars. Would not it be somewhat preposterous five given by an 80 year old child?
4. Book por, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama

Ivo Andreotti: abático de um cara comum*****

Andreotti's Margem

Margem, Não!: O ano sabático de um cara comum
Margin, No !: The sabbatical year of a common guy
A very good travel story and for me, a means of learning Portuguese. Several good features. Most important of them: the cosy way of narration, feeling of walking together with the author as an exceptionally cunny guide. The only thing I did not quite understand: the title of the book! What does he mean with 'Margem, Não!'? Google translation does not help. Maybe he has explained it somewhere. If so, I have missed. Or is it just a sly tag to draw the reader's attention, to keep him alerted and waiting where the explanation comes. I read attendively to the end. No explanation found.
There are three remarkable features which I liked in addition of the fluent flow of narration. One is the overall fluent use of headings. From the point ofreader: never too much headings. Did I recognize four levels? Only two higher needed for overall orientation, the other two helping specific attention and short summaries. None unnecessary. All helping easy reading. The second nice feature not found elsewhere: lists of basic info at the beginning of every new country. The third not seen elsewhere: the most simple drawn continent map showing the etaps of the trip. I am using and urging others to use Gmaps to introduce every new locality. Actually I have got an increasing list of ready links, which my page making program automatically checks just as I expected Andreotti doing with his usuário. I tried a couple of times usuário, but only links to music did open, no photo collections, which I expected. Must check another time still. I have my picture collections at the end of files as a collection of small pictures as links.
I liked Andreotti's manner of joining and collecting groups of fellow travelers. Traveling alone is nothing. One must have fellows to exchange views and opinions about the continuous flow of impressions. Andreotti had this kind of company of shorter and longer duration. I must stil check, who were these Alex and Cloe. Did he have them with him on all trips from beginning or just at the end?
I realy enjoyed this book, made a lot of notes of travel impressions as well as on my original purpose of choosing this book of learning Portuguese by reading. Lot of words, another of idioms and third of making this summary as usual with my system of MyeBooks. Without any hesitation, all five stars!

5. Book cat, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

M Asensi: Terra Ferma***

Terra ferma (Ramon Llull) (Catalan Edition)

3.0 out of 5 stars My first book in catalan language, October 23, 2012
This review is from: Terra ferma (Ramon Llull) (Catalan Edition) (Kindle Edition)
Being my first book in catalan, I was not able to enjoy all finesses of the text, but enough to enjoy reading a fascinating story. I have previous experience of Mathilde Asensi's books, O ultimo Catao in Portuguese, quite exceptionally colourful and exiting story on the basis of which I selected the Terra ferma, and indeed was not disappointed.
6. Book por, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: por

Machado de Assis: Ressurreição*****

Simultaneously Obscure and Clear!

A very pleasant reading experience, simultaneously obscure and clear. What?
But first thanks to Kindle for improvements, although still some very basic blunders to correct. It seems that the programmers do not try in practice their ideas, so obviously failing are the results! Also two steps forwards, one back. Now, good formulation (automatic size and font) of reading mode and updown scrolling. Step backwards: loss of spot when returning from notes and dictionary (Kindle dictionary and W useless, because not transferable to clipboard, also message formulation unpractical for further use in reader notes. So, big trouble in programming, completely futile results!). Appalling hide and seek with page numbers, ignorant handling of bookmark timestap. Oh, how long still this torture of paying readers!?
The text, the book as such not obscure, but undoubtedly clear. Only some features remained obscure due to failing but constantly increasing knowledge of langue in the case of the reader. Well-known phenomenon to this reader. Although not in the least discouraging. With failing knowledge of language i have noticed that i do not always catch the overall message lf the text, but still greatly enjoy in just the immediate reaading situation, feeling nothing lost even if several words remaining chimere, not bein looked in the dictionary or dictionary not knowing. So also in this text. Only in the very last pages I think that I understood the Tiltle of the text Ressureiçao. At the deathbed of the old. Whether correctly or uncorrectly understood, the value of the straightforward and easily formulated text is very high for me in learning to understand Portuguese, a language that I have never studied in the conventional way, but just by reading books. In this methos it is very important that you have a good book to start with. In my case it was Crime and punishment by Dostoevsky. I read it parallelly sentence by sentence, paragraph by paragraph, page by page in Russian and in Portuguese. Have done so in other languages, too. Also using other good starters. I think that in just Portuguese I have had particularly good luck, good books at the beginning and continuously since. Macao de Assis is not a random choice, although it could be. Amazon does not publish collected works by meagerly talented authors. After some thirty books I feel myself a completely confident reader of Portuguese, not far from able producer of text myself - with the help of Google, I am using even in case of more familiar languages writing everything in English and letting Google translate. Knows, for instance, superb Russian, so that after having corrected certain automatic translation blunders I feel proud for the high class litterary result. Only from and to my own language Finnish, completely hopeles translations, true getting better all along.
Still a word about these giant publications of collected works of authors. A very ingenious idea! This way I get a comprehensive idea and table of contents as well as competent hint of a good author, classics. Of course, can also read and is not clumsy for handling although big, except the blockhead stupid devil's invention of using locations in stead of epages. Wanting to write review, i then buy the individual book, somewhat handier for several purposes and particularly for writing a review, one of the best devices in learning languages.
So, four stars is just the appropriate assessment, failing from five not because of author but by the failing knowledge of the language of the reader.
7. Book eng, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

: Margaret. The Handmaid's Tale . HMH Books. Kindle Edition.*****

Not what I expected

Originally I only searched a book written by a woman author. In this eternal dispute about the equality of man and woman, I cannot imagine a more neutal person than myself, although I recognise big difference in many respects between the two sexes. Amazon happened to recommend just now this Margaret Atwood. So why not, especially as this seemed to be the most popular book I have ever read deciding from the number of reader reviews. I did not read any reviews of this book. I seldom read them, although nowadays write one about every book I read - mainly in purpose of learning languages, but not only. Lately more and more for summarizing my thouhts and impressions of the book, making for me a spiritual link to the text and author. Amazon has published about 130 of my reviews so far, in seven languages. Nowadays I always write in English and then let Google translate. I find that I am learning by astonishing and enjoying good G translations.
But reading Handmaid, getting confused and disappointed, not getting what I expected, at the same time being very impressed by the author's suveraign skills? On what grounds? The first forty pages: complete abracadabra for me. Started to doubt my understanding of the English language, suspecting my high age of 84. I had, however, firmly decided to read the book to the bitter end, whatever followed. And so I did. Not so difficult from page 49 on. But why such confusion at the beginning? Two reasons due to the text: I found the satisfactory expression, elliptical text, uncompleted sentences, lacking words. And the reason for that: quite obviously, text written in big hurry.
Another reason for not understanding, my fault: author's extraordinary rich vocabulary. Up to now I have always used Google translator for unknown words and expressions. Now big innovation, thanks to Amazon: started to use Kindle links to Dictionary, Wikipedia and Internet, copying the information to my notes. Grateful of it being so easy. So diappointment turned to important innovation.
But the largest and heviest disappointment is still to come: erotics. This book is full of it. So that I made another innovation: founded a new category, a new genre in my notes with the abbreviation ero, erotics. Only during the last couple of years I have read books containing erotics, alas a senior, senile of 84 years. I must now afterwards change the genre markings of some books marked fic, fiction. Still, the best erotics is as a spice in some books marked as nonfiction. Having only one marking, no way of changing nof to ero in such as Ken Follett's world embracing encyclopedic histoty book.
Another disappointing feature of Attwood's erotics is that it is ice cold, without the minimum of romantic love, very trivial, which I love. But I am ready to understand that this is just the purpose of the author: to descibe the wide existence, particulary from the pont of view of woman, this kind of ice cold erotics without feelings of love, women as walking wombs, or how was the expression by the author.
Then, again at the end of the book, big confusion: at first elliptical text, this time not due to hurry scrbbling, but very deliberately gripping with firm hand the poor reader of the throat or neck, as preparation to the grand finale to come, the falsified explanations, speeches ad documents. I for my part deliberately use this word falsified, as a vengeance to the author for having completely confused me up to the point that I had to look up in Wikipedia whether Gilead really does exist or not! Only then did I really understand the contents of this book: ice cold erotics, ice cold fiction, with very heavy side taste, spicing of mocking an innocent, ignorant reader.
For literary skills this work, all right, deserves high average number of stars on Amazon pages, but my assessment is a deliberate understatement of only two, th main reason being the ice cold spirit of the whole approach.
8. Book rus, summary: ajkNotes

Л.Е. Балашoв: Этика 2019*****

A complete masterwork of soulnutrition!

Balashov's Etika is and undoubtedly will stay the book of the year 2020 for me! This is not only medicine for mind but nutrition to soul, a complete preventive sanatorium cure for future health, hapiness and integrity. So deeply it goes under the skin, cuts straight to the heart. No overwords, easy to see from the length of these summary notes already.
This is, however, no novelty to me from the author. On the contrary, most ideas in the contents of this book are familiar to me, from the authors earlier texts and many in general also from other authors. In spite of that the author has again succeded in baking fresh elements to his bread and porridge.
First of all, the contents and the subject matter seems to me all inclusive. Whatever direction I turn my eyes, there is LE with his well-founded facts with ample footnotes and references to other authors and well-formulated own opinions with frequent discussions with his students. A real Socrate of our times. The essence of philosophy, robust structure of mind and soul, its health and harnony as well as weaknesses. Truth, lies, liking and love. Far to the other half of the book I read with ease and speed, although no word letting without attention. Already was sure that no speed reading will be needed because of the other reason for it, but then: bumps! The treatment of anticulture. It was too much. Does that really exist? I cannot avoid the conclusion that because of his constant reference by using the two most importan coordinates of human existence, time and place, i must admit: yes, exists, but i have only shut my eyes and wish to do it also henceforward. And i could not avoid speedreading, although not overlooking, only not staying and getting sticked in this subvegetation. Then again, towards the end of the book, a grand party of the Russian shiroko-minded celebration with tens, may be hundreds of the colleagues and students of the author. All treated with respect and friendliness, with firmness and vezlivost as says the Russian guard of the civilian peace making honour with hand to the hat. And a rigorous collection of repetition exam questions at the end of the book, oral and manual. I read them all, a lot of more time would have been needed to answer them all, even from me, late-born philosophy student, not to speak of those really participated to his courses during decades.
I must admit that I have been victim of a trick from the side of the author. I had made acquaintance with his production right at the beginning of the millennium when retiring from my career as university teacher. Only then did I start my philosophy studies. Succeeded to awake attention of the author, as so many other of his students, and even met with him. Now he surprised me completely by sending me a video of the inauguration of this book, uninterrupted from first to the last minute. Never had i experienced something like that. As if i had sat in the midst of the audience. Only was not able to participate into discussion as so many others. I do not think that it stops very soon. I am convinced that i should read this book once a year, not so much to repeat forgotten than to have a fresh and tasty chain of chat with my Socrate.
9. Book rus, summary: ajkNotes

Лев Балашов: Ленин - критические заметки*****

The inheritance of Lenin seen from the today's point of view

The author of this text is an acquntance of mine , book translated , another being done , three times encountered, a large number of messages exchanged, strict controversies, unmanageable conflicts, but we remained friends, however. How did this begin? However, this millennium with my retirement. At the beginning of my retirement, I came up with the idea that I should study something new for me. And that was the philosophy. It has continued to this day and apparently will continue as long as the foot flies.

However, recent contacts have been ongoing in the long term. In essence, birthday incomes have changed. He was younger than me five years ago. But a couple of years ago, he started to offer links to his production and fb discussions with my fb-reaches. When Suomi-100 is at the same time also Russia 100, so, of course, Revolution 100, I was caught up with his "Lenin - Critical Remarks" on his subject. I commented more pairs, but they are on both sides missed a conventional peukutustasolle. This really did not stay - at least from my side. It's interesting to see what Lev Evdokimovitsh says, as long as I do this for him. I suspect that he will not be dropping from the side.

The early part of Lenin - the critical remarks of the text is a document-oriented summary that he can read it accordingly. Jaha, that was, familiar, nice to know a new, new perspective. It did not get tired of sleep as Pompey's fate in the Tsar family's performance. But then! The last half of the document. Pum, präks, pum! This is a very wonderful summary of the author's debates on this and what is happening right now. Well, that's all the time in full media. And I have no cover to say that it would be unreadable in color. But, nevertheless - everybody understands that it is anti-Russian, Russia is frustrating and intimidating with Russia's threat. Here is the conversation from which those elements are missing. And, more importantly, the opposite is also missing, that is, Russian wreck. Instead, the debate is open to criticism of the current crisis. And can we find it almost, if not quite the American level, an inconsistent contradiction between Lev Evdokimovitshin and me. It is the role of Gorbachev in the destiny of the Russian people and throughout the world. In my opinion, Gorbachev is the greatest statesman of the last century, running past Churchill, many of whom are the greatest. Gorbachev, in my opinion, released then 200 or more of a million people's slavery. LEB says that Gorbachev's significance was negligible (and Yeltsin's even worse). I did not say anything about Jeltsin, but Gorbachev's glasnost was, in my opinion, the decisive thing. In his opinion, the liberation of Russia from the Communist yoke was a historically inevitable event (Pentele in the process: just as Marxism-Leninism suggests, the proletarian revolution, and, in short, the deep-rooted ferocity of the Russians generally all that happens in the world). Does not man, especially one person, influence the destiny of a nation? Well, as soon as this trivialisation of Gorbachev then he at least half a dozen hit the table hard name and asks: what would be Russia without these? These are twin artists and scientists. Do not professional politicians, therefore, do the fate of the nation affect them? And I think I have to doubt the same thing with my friend Levin - not a bad thing!

This is what I do not do with the Lev Balashov essay - so it can be called how to categorize it: it is by no means just a polemic and does not remain within the limits of the blog - to specify the content. Again, this is already a lot when I recently invented a utopian escape to your own qualifiers, not a lot of interference, I would say: the good old days of grassroots anarchist. But, in my opinion, the difference between the utopian and the anarchist is that the utopian looks forward, the anarchist only loses everything. The latter is more than easy to do, and of course, I'm often sorry. But about a year ago I came up with this utopian. A strong nail with which I suppose. It is keeping on grassroots, that is, on a small human level. This is especially true of economic activity, but also of politics. Democracy is based on individual freedom where the driving force of the economy is the needs of a private person, psychic and physical. My utopian authorities are Adam Smith and JM Keynes is lying right now and quite unexpectedly by Thomas Piketty. And then, of course, we believe in human and technological development, which is largely based on methodology. And all this behind is math! 😃

PS This summary is one of the best, if not the best proof of my MyeBooks note system. In the case of language glossaries and idiom, MyeBooks' meaning is obvious, but in this case, the notes of the text also include a secretion of the message.

10. Book rus, summary: ajkNotes

Лев Балашов: Занимательная философия****

Another full course in philosophy

L.E. Balashov's Zanimatelnaya Philosophiya (Philosphy of Activity might be a proper translation) is anotner full course of philosohy after Volkstümliche Geschichte der Philosophie by Karl Vorländer I recently have read, not only read, but with enthusiasm thoroughly studied. The latter is a classic and I am fully confident that this Balahov's will becoe one, so convincing is the material and the grip of the author. Quite obviously emerging from a proliferous experience as academic teacner as well as participer of daily polemics of the subject. The book is full of succulent debate citates and references to classical professionals from antiquity to the present. Big joy reading this kind of text.
I like the structure of the book. Starting from the table of contents. At the first glance it is almost shocking, very detailed and comprising no less than some ten pages. But it also gives a very logical and comprehensive picture of the book. A big basket of bonbons, full of two kinds of delicacies: names of famous philosophers and their offerings, great ideas o philosophy, focused on their practical aspects. The text is decorated with vignet pictures, never seen before. Many of them bring a welcome flower of humour and smile to the reader's mind and face.
Still two original ideas are worth mentioning. One of them is a comprehensive list of tasks and exercises. Reading those I came to the famous conclusion presented by the giant forerunner of all philosophers, Socrate: I know that I do not know anything or that of his late pupil: I don'nt even know that I do not know anything. Sofisms apart - also they are richly represented. There is another surprise at the end of the book: a whole other book ЗАНИМАТЕЛЬНАЯ ФИЛОСОФИЯ ДРЕВНЕЙ ГРЕЦИИ по М. Л. ГАСПАРОВУ. What is so good of it? At least for me: It appears as another repetition of great familiar ideas of philosophy. Reading it you have constantly the feeling of familiarity with the exceptionally well-formulated text.
11. Book ita, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: ita

Cesare Balbo: Della Storia d'Italia****

Too detailed for me

It seems to me that Balbo has developed his own language with its own refined scale of expression, me being unable to follow to the depths of it. My response was as usual in this kind of dilemmas: speed-reading. Maybe my average speed of reading has been about a second for a screen of 14x50=700 characters.
But in about the middle of this book, I experienced a Heureca for one big technical problem: I found a new measure of location! Henceforward my mesure is loca comprising 10 locations. The practical consequence: whenever i see location as a bookmark, I write its rounded or truncated value, that is, loca in my notes, thus needing to writing only one tenth of all digits, which means a huge saving of time and trouble in making reading notes for my MyeBooks reading history! Hence forwards no complaints for clumsy Kindle. All the same, when or whether they come to senses and start using the epage as a location mark in stead of their completely stupid location!
Maybe a hundred epages=200 locas later I experienced another Heureca, smaller than the first, however. Hitherto I had tediously with my forefinger calculated on an average-looking first line of a screen the numer of characters and by the same method the number of lines on the screen thus getting the size of the screen in characters and taking 2000 characters for an epage thus getting the suitable measure for my advancement in reading of a book and for any unit of time from a day to my life long reading. Heureca: why don't I just paint a screen and transfer it to my true friend Google translator. It shows always the number of characters to be translated, having the upper limit of 5000 characters or 2,5 epages at a time. Henceforward no digit calculation with forefinger but turning to the services of big G.
Thus Balbo becoming my hero to be remembered until the end of my reading history, of course not very far ahead, because of my present age of 83. Balbo deserves in an indirect way the number of four stars!
12. Book hun, summary: ajkNotes

Honoré de Balzac: A homályos ügy****

A welcome language exercise

I must honestly confess that I really did not see the forest from the trees, that is: what was the HOMÁLYOS ÜGY, ténébreuse affaire, dark affair, the concrete subject matter of this book.

I guess that the reason for this is my lacking knowledge of the Hungarian language. This, however, did not the least hamper my enjoying greatly the reading of this book. Two big reasons: the richly readable text of the highest Balzac level and the best possible reading device of Android Word reading mode with optimal qualities for making notes for MyeBooks, my own revolutionary device for making and elaborating reading notes to web pages for later study, particulaly for language study.

The Word qualities I only by hazard did find searching a suitable device for reading text not purchased at Amazon, my usual source for reading. Amazon's Kindle has really been a revolution in reading, in my case completely outmoded and superseded paper books. But what is this Word application compared with Kindle? Still ten times better for its quickness and clipboard qualities. If I could get my Kindle books alternatively Word formatted or in plain text, I would read them with Android Word.

The facts that it did not become clear what was the unclear affair and the brilliant Balzac language transcendent my lacking knowledge of Hungarian oblige me to read the original French version, where there is no question of understanding the language. As a matter of fact I have the book already in Kindle. Have also a couple of times used for checking my understanding. Does the ténébreuse affaire become clear or does Balzac really pull the leg of the reader? No doubt, Master B would be able to do that, too.
Forthe two laudable qualities and lacking language knowledge of the reader the just number of stars is four.

13. Book fra, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: fra

Honoré de Balzac: Une ténébreuse affaire**

L'affaire restait ténébre

Peut-être que je devrais lire ce livre encore une fois pour clarifier le vrai problème, le cœur de celui-ci. Il y a une véritable Loire de mots et d'explications en termes juridiques et de grands idiomes de la haute société, mais désolé: je n'ai pas compris le résultat. Il y a quatre hommes innocents et un Michu du Cinque-Cygne, un château dégénéré en ferme agricole et plusieurs dames, mariés et non mariés, chevaux, robes, et surtout robes. Aussi Napoléon Bonaparte étant miséricordieux grâce à des innocents, applaudissant le patriotisme et exprimant des plans pour laisser des milliers de jeunes hommes innocents être tués dans la bataille le lendemain matin. Mais est-ce que le cas de ce livre s'est éclairci ou non? Il est resté flou pour moi. Pas même la dernière phrase du chapitre nommé Conclusion n'a allumé la bougie: Mais, dans cette affaire épouvantable, il y a eu de la passion de la part de l'agent principal, qui vit encore, un de ces grands hommes subalternes qu'on ne remplace jamais, et qui s'est fait remarquer par des tours de force étonnants. Il parait que mademoiselle de CinqCygne avait maltraité quand il était venu pour arrêter les Simeuse. Ainsi, madame, vous avez le secret de l'affaire ...
Ce livre ne mérite pas plus de deux étoiles de ma part, même quand je le lisait deux fois, une fois en hongrois et doutant de ma compréhension de la langue moins familière, l'autre fois en français.

14. Book nor, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Mette Barfelt: Urimelige forventninger****

A good-minded family drama

I really liked this book, although it is not direcly my genre. The book was not chosen because its genre, but because of the Norwegian language. It did not increase my overall repertoire of languages of 20 defined by at least one book read in a language. But Norwegian is my 16th language in ebooks. At the age of 80 I continue as a passionate language learner. And my system of analyzed and synthetized notes MyeBooks has only increased my eager. Norwegian is one of those about ten langjages on my list, which you can easily read on the basis of their relative languages without ordinary language study. Some of them I definitely do not understand spoken, not to speak of producing myself.
Without actually intending, I have recently read three remarkable family drama books. The other two being Storia del nuovo cognome by Elena Ferrante and Stoner by John Williams. Stoner is a lifelong story of an academic person. These two others comprise shorter periods of life. All of these I have read primarily for linguistic reasons. Stoner offers interest also from the point of my own academic career. Ferrante and Barfelt are concentrated to actual family life. My short resumé of Ferrante is that it is a story of very different kind of life from what is common in these lattitudes of Northern Europe full with kisses and slaps in the face, whereas this Norwegian version could as well be from my own surroundings in Finland.
It is a joy to read clear text of this book written awake, with no ambiguities or unnecessary use of low style expressions. Quite especially I appreciate the positive and life glad and optimistic overtune of the book. No need to fear the worst, but expect the final happy end. The author has succeeded to paint with very strong and distinctive characteristic about half a dozen of interesting personalities with quite a variety of spiritual spices. Big pleasure to participate to their life.
Four stars as a general assessment. the fifth failing only for my inconvenience with this specific genre of litterature.
15. Book hun, summary: ajkNotes

Benedek Elek: Édes Anyaföldem!****

A praiseworth reading experience

At first I had difficulties to understand the text and was obliged to frequently use of dictionary. Then got used or the author changed to matters better known for me. The scope of this book is the whole adult age life of the author in his family and home life surroundings in Hungary from before and after the First World War. Big changes from prosperity and atmosphere of love and wellbeing to chaos and evacuated life in outright hunger and distress in hamsize folkdemocratic Hungary. At the end there is a diary of the last weeks of the sixty years old author. Reading the first part of happy life was also pleasant and easy, informative reading, the latter part in stead mere suffering and also uninteresting. Not even the diary did fetch my interest and not even compassion. Led, however, me to consider my present corresponding situation, last days of my life and bequeth to my dearest and close friends. I must review my pages of memories and KunKuolen (WhenIDie) in the computer, eve send the to my family members.
The gloomy end notwithstanding four stars seems to me the proper doom.
16. Book spa, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Bernhard Thomas: El Malogrado****

Mountain brook of thoughts

Bernhard Thomas: El Malogrado
This is one of the strangest books I have read. A real mountainbrook of thoughts. Somehow related to the important Nobelists García Marques, Llosa, Saramago... but still different. Having read about ten books by these masters I am completely fed up with text without proper punctuation and paragraphing. But I could not refuse this Bernhard recommended so eagerly by my cklass mate and friend Viljo. And I must say: Bernhard grasps closer to the process of thinking than those mentioned. Somehow deeper in the brainstream, including repetitive passages just as you have them walking on a quiet forest path lacking any hurry whatsoever.
The subject of the book is the death of one of its personages Wertheimer, the Looser. The question is: what was the ultimate reason of his suicide? At the background there are Austrian mountains, two renowned musicians Glenn Gould and (Vladimir) Horowitz and the best of music the Goldberg Variations and the Art of the Fugue. Without Glenn Gould Wertheimer would be the top student in the master class. But there is the insuperable Gould. He was even better than Horowitz. Nobody could survive in the shadow of Glenn Gould. But was it the mere existence of this superhuman star that caused the death of Wertheimer? That is the question. Perhaps a careless word by the master or just the consiousness of inferiority?
At first very sceptic about the ability of following this stream of thoughts, but gradually noticing that it is possible. A hint to the future reader: read as fast as possible. That way you will better reach the feeling of folloowing the stream. This text lacks complicated expressions. So you can speed. The very special repeating of passages only helps to understanding. In the end and acouple of days later I feel it necessary to increase the number of stars from three to four.
17. Book pol, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Tomasz Biedrzycki: Polish Emigration - Saksy po polsku***


Interesting title. What does it mean? I tried to find out. Some results in notes below. One translation: Germans in Poland - does not describe the contents of this book. It should of course be: Poles in Italy. But perhaps it is intentionally ment to be an allegory. In that case may well be quite suitable. A curious trip with no results. That's what this trip is, an interesting travel story, well conceived and written. Large part of it on way in an old car with drinking passengers to Italy and back. An exclamation mark to the praxis of Free Europe. Go anywhere you want! At least you see landscape and hear alien languages spoken, have some pizza and wine, but not much else. Big applaude to the author havig described all this properly, not exaggerating nor dimishig.
If technically proper execution, this book would deserve at least four stars. But it is not that, not tecnically proper execution. On the contrary, below all limits of acceptance from the part of Amazon. If this would be an exceptional case, it would be excused, but it is not. This is already at least third for me. The worst of them all. Completely unacceptable translation, practically no use for reader. But the worst of all: a complete mess of navigation within the text. Done by a master of nonsense. Spoiling a good text and good purpose. Therefore only three stars.
18. Book eng, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

F.C. Blake: Immigrating Tears****

Blake's crocodile tears

I only ask myself whether it is too cruel to hint to crocodile tears in this connection but having finished the book I had the odd feeling that the author whitholds something pertinent, but what? He never mentions his real origin by name as if shamed of it.
But in many respects this is a very remarkable text. Not least because its fluent narration and rich language. It is not just choice of words, that too, but also the scenery awaking from his colorful expressions and erudite references. I really liked his English and did not mind having several times to refer to dictionary being a nonnative speaker myself. All to my own upbringing, one of the main purposes of reading in general. It is one of the best features of ebooks that dictionaries are available by one click. Only should the word definitions remain in the readers Notes & Markings file in addition to his faible memory (and the markings file downloadable as a lasting souvenir of the book in question). However, having read some twnty first pages I had a slight feeling of diappointment. Now almost regretting for having summed the first reading lot as 'dull', quite too harsh and quite too soon a judgment, as it soon turned out.
Next time I could not finish but devoured some fifty pages finding it everything else but dull.
I had chosen the book by hints to running, especially marathon running. I had just read another Amazon book of marathon running, What I Talk About When I Talk About Running by Haruki Murakami. And quite correct, the passages of running really, literally, offer colorful scenery as he describes his routes in training and competition. But here was also my worst diappointment, although that too, unfounded. Actually not unfounded, but completely wrong-minded, just wrong-minded, not ill-minded. I was disappointed with Blake's level as runner, an hour slower marathon than mine. But the essence of marathon is not time but the run itself. The real accomplishment is finishing it. In a way a four hour marathon is a bigger accomplishment than a three hour marathon. Four hours of continuous sincere effort and pain is something definitely more than only three hours of the same. Big hail to Blake, the marathoner! Suggest first name acquaintance in runners' club.
Another reason for fascination throughout the book was a certain similarity of his career with mine. From primitive circumstances to doctor's degree. He even mentions about the secret of trees flourishing around his first home. I could tell something similar, although there is a tremendous diffenence in climate conditions. My harsh winters compelling to much more severe attitudes to the prime necessities of life for survival. Then there is his teen age educaton away from home in strange surroundings in Italy. I also had to leave my home early, at the age of twelve, to go to school. Although not very far, away from home, anyway. Much later on I had my experiences of Italy and Italian language. The more nice a surprise was it to find a paragraph where the author list the most memorable impressions of his trips in Italy outside his site of education. I could write, or better still, almost cite this paragraph as a list of my experiences in Italy. A real nice coincidence of life.
Further reasons of community feeling with the author through the book, which is my habit of seeking in all reading, is in economics. In my case it is the core of my whole career being a professional economist and having written several economics books. From his mentioning of economic events and terminology it is easy to see that he has had excellent success in his courses of economics, although economics not being directly his main career. Sticking to personal impressions, he tells a lot of his atraction to music and dancing. As sportsman dancing was also my hobby during years of teenage, but later only occasionally. His liking of music, on the contrary, has nothing to do with my very narrow taste of listening 24/7 barock of 1600-1750.
All in all, a very entertaining and in many respects worth while reading these Immigration Tears, A Story of Survival and Running to Destiny by F.C. Blake, well deserving my four stars, if not quite five because of the lack of a real big sting.
19. Book rus, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Семен Мойсеевич Брилиант: ь и служба*****

Derzhavin - dignitary and poet

This book I picked up on the hands, or rather put in my rack, out of curiosity to find out what kind of person is Derzhavin, alike to whom me has found my dear Russian friend. So I read all the time looking for opportunities to find similarities between myself and the hero of the book, the poet Derzhavin. Frankly: I din not find. If, nevertheless, the most important: people walking their own path. Because of vanity I read all the time looking for something similar, but soon from the beginning fell in love with the hero, and even more with the story of the author. No groveling, but direct words, even with a taste of rudeness as to some extent in the performance of Derzhavin self. From this characteristic I myself flatly refused. But if still present, it is not deliberate as in the case of the hero according to the author's words. But fairly agreeing with the author's description of the feature of a certain determination in all steps on the path of living.

But the most precious property of the hero of this book I do not see any such alikeness. But his talent, great talent for poetry! I myself have always felt alienity opposite poetry. Difficulty to understand the line. Not to mention myself trying to write a poem. Just remember, however, that as schoolboy I once wrote in the spring a poem with the title Roosa ja Ruusa, both words derivatives of the word rose, of course. Only reading the prose version written by coincidence in Spanish could I understand our national epic of Kalevala and evaluate its greatness. And now, reading odes of Derzhavin, I noticed gradually that I understood their meaning, understood poetry. You could say, the first time in my life, at the age of almost 80 years! Similarly, only a year ago I lost hate, not hate but fear of the dog, when the daughter's of the family acquired a quite wonderful doggy. What a clever man which personality, philosopher, just Derzhavin, more than I!

What more I can say about Derzhavin? With the words of his biographer: "Derzhavin's poetry at its best is a reflection of the reign of Catherine, and a monument to her." And: "not dead Derzhavin any more than died a century, he glorified; Age of Catherine preparing the age of Alexander, cook of our age; between Derzhavin and poets of our time there is the same consanguine historical connection that exists between the three epochs of Russian history. " So, I realized, also thinks my friend recommending to me getting acquainted with this person. But no less do I respect the author of this book, which I took of the many offered by Amazon purely on the basis of cheapness, price of $ 0. But its value can only be expressed with five stars without any doubt.
20. Book eng, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Jacob Bronowski: The Ascent Of Man*****

A good introduction to myself

That was what it is: a jolly good introduction to anybody, to me, to you, and to Jacob Bronski, even to Albert Einstein. Path of development of man from original living cell millions of years ago to the bearer of brain more ingenious than the latest brand of computer available. All in thirteen steps on the Earth. A battle for survival of the fittest. An unbroken chain of getting food and shelter to enable physical and psychic steps forward to the final unknown destiny of man.
Somehow I expected more mathematical proof than this enormous amount of intuition in finding factual evidence all over in the world and quite close to anybody.
Up to the last moment I had in mind four stars, but how can I deny in the end five? So much satisfaction did it give, so five stars to Jacob Bronowski.
21. Book rus, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Михаил Булгаков: Собрание сочинений Том 1. Дьяволиада.****

A quite terrible book!

A scrap heap of ideas and that of a good writer's waste paper basket, self arranged, not having finally heart to throw even petty crumbles away. But not completely that. Big irony gives the justification of existence for this work.
Quite justified, hiwever, is here the question: where is the beef? Another big question is in my mind from the beginning to the end: how can this man have survived in the Soviet system? Sheer non-hidden irony of the system everything he writes. Or isn't the totalitarian system not so totalitarian as we imagine? Or has it a much thicker skin than we imagine?
Sheer scrap heap material are the countless small passages of some loose sentences which start of nowhere abd end up to nowhere. Expressions of frustration, undefined frustration or so very tiny everyday frustration that as such they are insignificant. But perhaps just that is the beef, the fruit of the big bureaucracy of questionary and subscript of authorization in the least details of life.
At the end of the book this subscribed paper irony is brought to the utmost finality by letting the hero run heart in throat floor scales and doors without end in search for a most modest bed place in shared room somewhere in the Soviet heaven of Moscow. This story is not a mere scrap heap leaving the reader with just a headful of question marks. The bureaucratic mockery of democracy becomes clear, from the first steps on. Bulgakov does not loosen his grip of the poor reader. He is a deserving writer, in good and bad, in this case more in bad.
22. Book rus, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama

И.А. Бунин: Окаянные дни****

How to relate to this kind of book?

The literary merits of this book cannot be denied. Nor the importance of the subject matter: the Russian Revolution, nor the complete impartiality and openness of the treatment. That all well deserving the high general recognition of the author in form of the Nobel laureat. But for me this book is not suitable reading or I am not suitable reader of this book. The problem seems to be my strong pacifist attitude. I am following it by avoiding books concerning war and violence. But I am asking: is this a proper way? Wars and kolence do not disappear on my refraining to read about them. Shouldn't people being indifferent about these matters read and think more on them? However, I have chosen to read this book, even if with long teeth. Quite evidently, the book has been written for just anybody as an honest account on what happened in Russia for hundred years ago. Don't I want to know, what happened? I cannot deny that I wish to know history. I have just read thousand pages on Russian Revolution. What did I learn of these five books by three authors?
The first thing I learned from the book by Yuriy Pompeev was three hundred years of the dynasty of Romanov on a very close, so to say: skin level. On one hand, no features of harsh autocratic way of government were hidden, but at the same time, intimate and sympathetic family and official human relationships were disclosed. Then in the trilogy of my dear friend Yuriy Pompeev the activity of Lenin, the great leader of the Revolution was scrutinized in a very interesting way. Perhaps it is the only correct way, defined by actual circumstances. Lenin monitoring the flow of revolution from distance, outside the scene like me with my tv by remote control. Only on the few last of the 700 pages story did he appear on the spot - only to draw to rest for a moment at the spa where my aunt later did part of her life work, a completely fa tastic connection of myself with Russian revolution!
This second Lenin part of Revolution is told in the same facinating two way approach as the first one of the Romanovs. On one hand, not saving the reader of the harshest atrocities and blood streams up to knees, and on the other, on skin touch, going under the skin of personalities in human and in official matters. Who can resist that kind of approach? Of course nobody. Then there is the share of Lev Evdokimovich Balashov in the form of short critical comments on Lenin's activity. Again a new kind of approach: discussion with another specialist on the matter of the Revolution. Also this discussion arises a wave of sympathy by its honesty. And now this Bunin. The same to the knees reaching flow of blood and its consequences related in daily diary of 1918 and 1919, shortly after the culmination of 1917. What is special in this account? The very personal approach, not as a participant but as an observer of what happened. A surprise, comparable to my personal tie with the revolution, is that Father Lenin is only once mentioned, playing no part in the process. No explanation given!
Deciding from this my summary, an extremely fascinating history is told by authors really familiar with the matter. However powerful it is, it did not get me convinced of the necessity of this giant earthquake. On the contrary, I still believe in evolution in stead of revolution and to the possibility of it also in the case of Russsia. A full-fledged democracy is the way to build the government of the grass root human beings. It has been and even to a higher degree is today in the era of global information domains. In my opinion there is a very clear evidence of a very different social development in Russia in another book by Yuriy Pompeev: History and Philosophy of Entrepreneuship in Russia. No trace of revolution.

23. Book eng, summary: ajkNotes

Malcom Cameron: Mathematics The Truth**

Widely exceeds my mathematical capacity.

0958 20210728 Must drop this book.
Cameron, Malcolm. Mathematics the Truth: ‘Moving mathematics teaching into the age of quantum mechanics and relativity.’ (p. 7). Malcolm Cameron. Kindle Edition.
24. Book cat, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Jordi Canal: Història mínima de Catalunya****

Another revolution

Having just completed 4 books on the Russian Revolution of 1917 one cannot avoid a certain desire to comparison. But easily guessed: no point of comparison. Coincidense of no possible reasons between nations of 150 millions of Russians and 7 millions of Catalans. And, however, both cases deserve the denomination of revolution. Russian Revolution: internal, part of nation demanding power by force. Catalan: external, the arrowhead pointing outside to higher and wider authority, a part of nation to the whole nation, aiming to separation. In Russia, a cruel blast on ignition, in Catalunya a peaceful procession of events. In case of Russia, the term revolution is of course omnipresent, mentioned hundreds, if not thousands of times on those 1000 pages, but so is la revolució mentoned tens of times, somewhere also the term Revolució Catalana. Enough to be taken seriously, even if often mildened by the attribute liberal.

For me the Catalan language as such is unfamiliar, but offering no difficulties of understanding whatsoever, on the basis of Spanish; Catalan being not a bit more difficult than Portuguese. Here also of utmost importance is the excellent text as such. Easy to follow a straightforward narration with complete touch on statistical and numeric skill of presentation by the author Jordi Canal. Very helpful is also Amazon's Kindle version with alternating page views and easily readable font and perfect linking. The only improvement wish on my part remains the 'finger tip' availability of time and space coordinate information. I am confident that also this my wish will some day be fulfilled being so evident and helpful for any reader.

Feeling temptation to give full five stars I, however, remain in four. Would not five be too preposterous from a reader of so thin touch to the language?

25. Book afr, summary: ajkNotes, review: Eng

Lewis Carrol: Alice in Wonderland in Afrikaans*


What a nice book!
... but to my purposes, a big disappointment. My goal is to learn the language. I learned nothing from this.
26. Book spa, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: spa

C.T. Cassana: El misterio de la Reina Nefertiti****

Promising new subgenre

My favorite is a book that is a mixture of fiction and nonfiction. Aren't all books that, some way or the other? Not completely true, neither imaginary. So is this Nefertiti. Contains very distinct features of fiction. Just at the limit of what I can accept. I am no big friend of time machine, nor birdlike flying, never read any Harry Potter. On the other hand, my absolute favorite is Jules Verne and I take 'rod, hook and sinker' anything he offers. Or Mark Twain with his Huck and Tom. Or Gulliver fixed to the Earth by his hairs. To that class is intending also behind letters hiding family mother C.T. Cassana with solid facts of everyday family life of archeologists with super talented daughter and son. Tese adopt a rather fantastic algorithm to the access of hieroglyph document of one of the most fascinating personage of the Queen Nefertiti of the very beginning of the documented history. Just while reading this book i somewhere hapened to see a glimpse of two other famous Nefertiti visitors, Elisabeth Taylor and Richard Burton. They reached great popularity among movie watchers all over the world. Lisa (Elisabeth) and Charlie the heroes of this history reached the venerous attention of two earlier owners of Nefertiti documents the British Museum and le Louve of Paris.
Despite of all this fact and fantasy I was rather disappointed about 90 per cent of the way, offering a maximum of three stars for this book, then rising my assessment to four stars when the time machile and the complicated steps to the treasury were revealed. Far reached C.T. but not, however, to the level of her predecessors mentioned above.
So four stars in stead of five as do get the really great masters.
27. Book eng, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Ha-Joon Chang: 23 Things They Don't Tell You about Capitalism*****

Things They Don't Tell You About Capitalism

5.0 out of 5 stars
His main trend is that countries and economies with well organized government do better than governments only lightly interferin, August 25, 2015
This review is from: 23 Things They Don't Tell You About Capitalism (Kindle Edition)
Another tremendous economics book. Literally shaking the foundations of the present Weltbild. Splinters of Chang's hammering will forcibly, or at least probably, also hit the present paradigm of economic science.
What are the real market forces? Is market economy just a battlefield of grass root forces? Chang throws 23 stones to break the old beliefs in this respect. He asks respect to government power by remarkable quantitative argumentation, but without use of snobbish scientific methods, just using common sense and well related percentages, mostly very convincing. His main trend is that countries and economies with well organized government do better than governments only lightly interfering the market process.
Very descriptive are the headings of this book, such as: There is no such thing as a free market, The washing machine has changed the world more than the internet has, Governments can pick winners, We are not smart enough to leave things to the market or Good economic policy does not require good economists.
From my nordic standpoint it is flattering and even complimentary that it seems that in all comparisons my tiny country Finland is mentioned among the exemplary models.
How persuasive as his argumentation may be, I do not get completely rid of my suspicions and confusions. On one hand Chang praises the role of government regulation: Governments can pick winners, on the other, he gives full credit to market system, if, however, in the spirit of it being the least harmful of all available systems. Communism has clearly shown its merits by ending up to complete failure. Although one of his headings is: Despite the fall of communism, we are still living in planned economies. The next heading is: Equality of opportunity may not be fair and after this: Big government makes people more open to change.
As conclusion Chang bravely says his opinion: how to rebuild the world economy. He formulates eight directives or more modestly principles as he says.

  • The first of then is drawn from a word of a surprising big authority, Winston Churchill, paraphrasing just what I already cited above: 'capitalism is the worst economic system except for all the others'. In the light of what we have read it is not surprising that Chang's criticism is of free-market capitalism, and not all kinds of capitalism.

  • Second: we should build our new economic system on the recognition that human rationality is severely limited.

  • Third: while acknowledging that we are not selfless angels, we should build a system that brings out the best, rather than worst, in people.

  • Fourth: we should stop believing that people are always paid what they ‘deserve’.

  • Fifth: we need to take ‘making things’ more seriously.

  • Sixth: we need to strike a better balance between finance and ‘real’ activities.

  • Seventh: government needs to become bigger and more active.

  • Eighth: the world economic system needs to ‘unfairly’ favour developing countries.

    • Who could dispute these? Every one of them is worth pondering and referring to Chang's argumentation throughout the 23 stone hard pieces of text in his book. No way of avoiding full five stars.
      I myself in front of a completely different present view of the state of my country's economy compared to Chang's am planning to cook up a new utopistic general economic theory. I have decided to base it on only two corner stones: Adam Smith's Wealth of Nations and Keynes's General Theory. Keeping strictly to these two. Being ready to mend and change, if trying to present anything in conflict with these. Now having read Chang's 23 Things, I have decided to ad this book as the third corner stone to my utopy. Three corner stones for an utopistic structure are more than enough, particularly as the structure is ready done, lacking just the start, as says a wisecracking proverb of my homestead Savo.
28. Book hun, summary: ajkNotes

Conan Doyle: Sherlock Holmes kalandjai*****

Genuine Holmes

Conan Doyle is one of those authors whose handwriting one recognizes straight away, even blindfolded. Somewhat zigzag, but secure. No violence, a feature which I particularly appreciate.
In more than one cases I have been ompelled to resort to the famous word: "Where is the beef?" But at the same time the text has completely fulfilled my two principal quality requirements, it has been: entertaining and educative. The former in general and the latter as the source of learning the Hungarian language. I could not relate or make summary of any of the stories accounted here, but the length of the noted vocabulafy convincingly testifies about the usefulness of reading this excellent book.
Four stars out of five seems just the right assessment.
29. Book eng, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Charles Dickens: The Posthumous Papers of the Pickwick Club*****

Mr. Pickwick and Don Quijote

This review is from: The Pickwick Papers: Premium Edition (Unabridged, Illustrated, Table of Contents) (Kindle Edition)
While writing this I am also organizing the markings file of my first Kindle book Don Quijote, which I have perused several times. The Pickwick papers only this first time, although having been conscious of its existence forever, at least 50 years. I thought that it is just a small heap of papers to be quickly eyed through. Even starting I was not aware of its extent. But it just went on and on. Only afterwards I found out that as paper book it is in some edition 660 pages and in another even 800, that is about a half of Don Quijote. And not an only dull sentence or dead end, just like DQ! Many times I continued still another chapter beyond what I had intended. I finished it in three weeks, that is good 30-40 pages a day, which is about double of its due quota, considering that I usually read two or three books parallelly.
But what about the connection between DQ and Pickwick? Is there any above the fact that they both are huge blocs of foremost world literature? I have the itching that yes, but cannot show clear instances. Of course both main persons are in some way foolish idealists, big free minds, which we all wish we could be. A great deal of both stories takes place in travelling, but by different means and in different signs: DQ on his miserable Rosinante and Pickwick on various horse buggies, one of which is called gig and described as - in fact not described closer than that it was on several occasions 'clay colored and red wheeled', but how many wheels? no mention. Never heard before of this vehicle. Wikipedia gives a host of gigs, and mentions the vehicle as two wheeled and horse drawn.
In general, I am very pleased with my invention of collecting dictionary lookups to a vocabulary file. This is one of the finest features of Kindle, although left half way in performance. You get the dictionary definition in an instant, but after closing it vanishes into thin air. Luckily there are screen grabbers with which you can save both the word and its definition.
Although so different of the present mode of life, still particularly different of the social surrounding of our life in Finland, where no Mr. and no Sir exist, not even difference between he and she in the mode of linguistic usage, without any hesitation: five bright stars to Mr. Pickwick by the great Charles Dickens!
30. Book eng, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

DK: Ecoomics Book*****

DK-Ecomomics - another Giant of Knowledge

Happy to have found DK, this fantastic source of knowlwdge, after having perused Philosophy and Politics, I grabbed my own speciality Economics, and, indeed, was not disappointed! As retired professor of economics I expected to find a repeating course of everything I had learned and lectured, written during my career. And I really found it, but not only that, but a giant wide background of it, of course the nucleus of my knowledge but also a thick layer around it, up to thick but not dense layer of unknown but interesting items.
Everything here is presented in the new revolutionary DK-way completely permeated by dense internal linkage to such an extent that it can without the least exaggeration be named a new genre, new at least to me, although I have read only ebooks already during the last five years and can consider myself a specialist in textbooks having myself published 27 editions of mainly textbooks, all in paper format. Now fingers are itching to get at least one of my obliterate, because of their strong fresh econometric foundation, texts transformed to this DK format. The same concerning my two present translations from Russian to English and Finnish, both two being particularly suitable for rich internal linking, one of them already having that to large extent as well as the discoursive spirit of the text being lented to this easy-learning way. Good bye thick hand-written notes for exam preparation tags. Of course, own hand-written has its advantages compared with ready-made author-prepared, but so have the latter, too, like automobiles over horsebuggies.
What is then particular in this DK Economics? Absolutely the topmost is the feature that every time a person, an authority is mentioned, the name is made a link to he or she being mentied elsewhere in this book, to peronal profile or to contribution to the topic now in question. You can, according to need and interest, look up or pass this link. Anyway, you cannot avoid paying notice to the frequency of a name in the text. It soon becomes clear that Adam Smith and Keynes are the real heroes of this book, quite rightly so, also in my opinion. It seems to me that in addition to all the real classics, almost all Economics Nobel Price winners get this honorifying link treatment. Except, to my astonishment, my favorite econometrician L.R. Klein. Why my favorite? Because my personal contact with him. Even if by a few hanshakes, but two terms of listening his lectures in Penn Uni and reading his widely popular book of The Keynesian Revolution and most importantof all having learned through his famous Klein's Kit booklet the main tool for my life's work, te Iterative Solution of a Macroeconomic Models. Indeed, Klein would have deserved being mentioned in this DK Economics along with Tinbergen and Frish, especially as econometrics as such gets a fair attention, for its significance in general, although none of its core principles, also a small disappointment. But all main doctrines and connections of economics as science and economic policies are profoundly treated in logical as well as their intuitive origins by personal flying wordings of the authors.
When reading about the myriades of the more dimmed stars, I come to the idea that this is even too much, a whole encyclopedia even for serious professionals. Something thinner, perhaps a half or even a third of the present would be needed for newcomers, studying youth as well as interested amateurs or practical representatives of business and administration. Therefore suggestion to publishers: Why not edit a shorter version before somebody else does it? I am convinced that the loss in pages brings a gain in readers and would not disappoint in sales either.
Anyway: full five stars assessment with laurel wreath!
31. Book eng, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama

DK: The Literature Book: Big Ideas****

A highway to reading literature

This Literature is my sixth revolutionary DK Big Ideas book after Philosophy, Politics, Economics, Religions, Mathematics. Philosophy I have diligently studied for past 20 years since my retirement as a lecturer (professor) of economics. So in those two disciplines, I expected to be so well current in the subject matter that I could not learn much new, but only check what was included, whatnot. But I was surprised: learned lots of new matters so well presented, above all in a pedagogical sense. Hundreds, maybe thousands of internal cross-linkings make these DK books excellent textbooks, encyclopedias, popular means of enlightenment both for laymen and for professionals. I did not expect that I could digest or understand enough Mathematics, but surprise again. Except only in some cases of really deep-going nutcracker specialties of number theory did I feel me a mere onlooker. Instead found solid foundations of that narrow but important field of mathematics I had learned when lecturing twenty years and learning myself mathematical economics, differential and integral calculus, and dynamics of economic and econometric models. No difficulties in understanding Politics and Religion although only everyday life contact with those matters. I did not expect so neutral and balanced text about such a sentimental subject as religion. Fantastic colorful details. In the end, when telling about my reading experiences, I came to name my three favorite religions, two of which unknown to me before reading DK Religions.
So far about other DK-books, all deserving full five stars as my assessment. But what about Literature? I am, after all, an eager reader - and a foolish statistician - having made a list of all over thousand books I have read during the past 55 years, almost 1000 paper books with assessment 1-3 stars, and now more than 200 ebooks with the scale of 1 to 5 stars and more than 130 reviews in pursuit of learning languages, made so easy and pleasant with ebooks. Again, no difficulty of matter-of-fact understanding. The first part, first 500 pages, all known classics spiced with many known by titles, arising desire of acquiring and reading, ok, introducing some principles of division to genre classification. But then, the last part, history since 1900, approximately, in general, of course with many exceptions, did and does not inspire me, dropping my stars to four instead of five. Modernism and post-modernism have not acquired my consent. I have tried some, but have experienced bitter disappointments, even in cases of events of general admiration. Here I find a suitable context of expressing my wide disagreement with the Nobel committee. Starting from Joyce, Gárcia, Llora and others not having at school learned subject-predicate sentences and punctuation. I am also fiercely accusing the Nobel committee for not giving the price to our Mika Waltari for his Sinuhe or the Estonian master Jaan Kross. My favorites are books with a documentary approach to a wide variety of human life, history, science, romance, everyday life. Instead, no scifi, neither war nor violence.
These Big Ideas of Literature history, four stars.
32. Book eng, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

DK: Politics Book*****


What a mountain of knowledge! Just to my taste and upbuilding. To the extent that I lost my right of copying more text. So I grabbed another means, screenshots. Now I have a system of screenshots. But, in the end, they are not very practical as notes. Better scroll the book on and on. A good model for the structure of any ebook form textbook. I am just constructting one. Have read Philosophy as my first DK revolutionary easy readers. Am intending to read the whole lot of them as a well-earned dessert as an 83 year oldboy economics professor. Have already ordered Religion and a couple of others. Warmly recommend to anybody.
Kindle introduction word to word confirmed. Five stars generously earned.
33. Book eng, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

DK: The Religions Book (Big Ideas)***

Another brilliant DK-source of information

This is already my fourth, after Philosphy, Politics and Economics. And I hope, not the last. Mathematics is already waiting, whatever still... The DK-concept, manner, genre of straightforward presenting of big ideas in ordinary language greatly pleases me. The secret weapon is the huge amount, myriad, thousands of links, with which the contents of the book is tied together to a tight and compact bundle of knowledge in a way completely inimaginable in a paperbook. This is a true revolution in textbooks. As an old text book author, my fingers are itching for transforming one or why not all of my several text book texts to this format, particularly as none of them has been published as ebook, yet.
In this book all the big religions Buddhism, Hindjism, Christianism, Islam are thoroughly presented as well as essentially perhaps hundred smaller variants, all in a matter of fact spirit without praising or mitigating any higher or less than others. Valuation is left to reader. I really made a list of my three top favorites and one disfavorite, one of them not known to me at all before reading this book. Very, very many aspects are considered, moral, practical, historical, social and others. It is astonishing how small details may be decisive in the essence of a religion. On the other hand, some keep a watertight, airtight hardcore of doctrine, some are dynamic and as such a chain of deliberate changes of doctrines and practice. Think about the Christianity from war-fighting past to the peaceful present. Or about the relationship of the religion to human scientific knowledge. The history is full of abrupt or gradual upsidedowns. Interesting pilgrimages, largely descripted in this book.
No question of other than full five stars.
34. Book fra, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: fra

Alexandre Dumas: La dame aux camélias*****

Superb reading in several respects

The winner is undoubtedly master Dumas. What a refinement from the beginning to the end as an egg from one end to the other containing a life inside, or a ripe fruit with a divine taste. A perfect love story perhaps, but more than that I appreciate some other facets of this masterpiece.
Above all, a very convincing argumenation in all the turns of events. Once, perhaps coincidentally originated chain of events contains no antagonistic substances, without very convincing reasoning. The emotions and the flow of tears proceed as mathematics, if a then b, reader being forced to believe in every turn. This was bound to happen. No other choice.
Another factor which is determined to draw attention is theb eauty of linguistic expression, brightness, smoothness. Not a single vague, distrait or absent-minded line. Nothing half-wake writtenwrittewith light hand and clearly refreshed brain, the author clearly enjoying what he is doing.
The third fascinating point ifor me is the masterly use of passé simple tense. I wish I could learn that skill! Although for myself it would not be of much use. When I hardly ever use, not to speak of typing in French, especialingsomething in which this tense could be used. In my own language the Finnish, yes. I try consciously to write, respectively, in the historic present tense, ie the corresponding way, whenever it is possible. In most cases, it takes place in such a way that having written the text for a long time I wake up and fix the tense written as if to a higher level of genre, and thence forward try to remember to write forwardthat way. Thus even now. In generawaynow and then limpin and afterwards correcting. One of the few of my French teachers had really learnt passé simple and used it constantly, Did not, however, require it from his students. I do not remember anyone else, not even a French person. from whose mouth I had heard passé simple.
At first puzzled me greatly the difference between two versions of this book. I had just read the same book in Polish and now in French. The Polish in the disguise of a theater play, wherea this is an ordinary novel. It is as if they were two entirely different stories, though clearly of the same topic. Of course, I have found no conflict. I can not imagine that there would be one. But I feel that the play would be as if the thoneskeleton of a fish, whereas the novel a full plump salmon. Or play a simple plan for a future story, although probably in fact the case is the contrary: First novel and then play, this is, of course, the exact data exist, but not me. Of course it is also true that part of the difference goes to the account of language. Polish I barely understand, written French - one can safely say: completely.
And still there is one important aspect, facet: the plot twists and turns as matters themselves. One is love, the other money, a third and a fourth life, illness and death. All of these deserve and require in this report the reader's own thoughts. After all, love is not, at least in my opinion, the main driving force of the story, as much as it dominates the emotions and behavior of the lovers, tears, happiness, up to the border of madness. I wonder how many times the word 'fou, crazy' occurs in the report ? For many, it is clear.
Not much is left behind, if any, money. It is spoken at every turn. The need for money, debts. In general, so and so many thousands, but not so much as individual prices than as annual costs. Pennies they do not talk about, but in some situations, one banknote causes big emotions, as is the case when Armand pays his beloved Marguerite for the previous night.
Fascinating are the twists and turns of life described here and the lifestyle to which belonged servants, friends, clothes, jewelery and - horses, and in the end the rail. Daily reciprocating letter was the main tool of commmunication, a mere messenger was not enough, the phone, the radio, not to mention the mobile telephone as it is now.
And finally, illness and death. The disease destroyed everything. Convincingly, not so that the patient would be forgotten, or even that the patient would not be taken care of. Yes, she was taken care of, bshethe simple shivering and coughing up blood inevitably did their duty. Theatre, dinners and Maskerades remain away. Yet, just at the end, Margarete wears a red and is going to the vaudeville lodge, in which she was sitting when invented by Armand. She did not see the play, but was staring at the lodge, from where Arwher was looking at her half a yeherago, the first time when they met.
And then followed a painful death. Here is Margarete alone, for Armand is far away, caused by the break of friendship, seemingly, although never in the depths of mind. The end result is a heart breaking death that touches me in two important respects: for loneliness and for my high age. Soon it will be in front of myself, even though right now not in sight.
There is no other choice than five stars.
35. Book hun, summary: ajkNotes

Alexandre Dumas: A Fekete Tulipán****

Sixtyfive years ago

I have had some difficulty in finding suitable reading in Hungarian to continue my hobby of that related language of my own Finnish. Hungarian is a real challenge for me, the most difficult of all languages I have learned. I have spend money and effort to Hungarian as much as to all other languages together, in addition to my language learning at school. Before I turned completely to ebooks I had read more Hungarian pages than English or even Finnish. I have spend six times a week in Hungary just speaking Hungarian. But then, I lost contact with my Hungarian friends and having finished paper reading it took time to find the Hungarian site of over 1000 free downloadable books. And even then I had difficulties with the reader program, suitable for my use of making notes for MyeBooks. This continued until I came to the idea of trying the Android version of Word as an 'unorthodox' reading program. Many of the Hungarian free books are available also in Word format. To my astonishment Android Word turned out even more suitable for me than Kindle. Only the feature of Intelligent search did disturb my reading until I finaaly learned to avoid it by just tapping and not sweeping the screen. The clipboard properties of Word are much more rapid and accurate, more suitable than those of Kindle.
But what about the sixtyfive years? Yes, I had read this Black Tulip by Alexandre Dumas sixtyfive years ago at the age of 15 years, then in Finnish. And to my astonishment I still now remembered some details from that reading. The story is guaranteed Dumas stuff of very fascinating and well-formulated text. So you can trust that you understand also in a language you do not know perfectly. So it turned out to be true. Only the vocabulary is very rich causing frequent searches in dictionary. But no big harm, it goes rapidly with Google translator. Finally, reading this book was a big joy: only few highlight notes, but many, many word searches, more than in any other languages. Luckily the Hungarian Google translator is comprehensive, sometimes needs only stripping several grammatical suffixes at the end ow words in order to find the translation. But even that kind of word trimming is a good part to my langue learning process.
A fascinating book with litterary merits, memories and big contribution to language learning deserve all five stars.

36. Book pol, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Alexandre Dumas: Dama Kameliowa****

A sad story of love, friendship and money

But for me, first of all, return to a language with happy memories, long forgotten already. Last time I spoke Polish was in the aeroplane returning from America more than 15 years ago. Last time I read a Polish book was 2007, and before that in 1994. My memories of visiting Polanand being in contact with Polish people are even older.

Strangely enough, there was something similar in those contacts with the story of this book, only not the very core of this story not included: no money, no paid love. But friendship and short meeting with friends. That is also the main contents of this book, as I see it.
However, there are also other views, above all, the moral view. This is treated with emphasis and strong hammering in the preview of this book, written as early as in 1867, the story by Alexandre Dumas, son, having been published in 1848. The preview is without signatue. It is not called preview, but 'Z powodu Damy Kameliowej', 'Due to...' hinting to the fact that this 'hammering' is not one personal view, but a summary of many. By swift reading I had the impression that the aim of this long writing comprising a quarter of the volume, is a versatile treatment of views sooner than drawing moral conclusion in favor or against. In the preview the moral aspects are really treated with much stronger emphasis than in the play itself.

Yes, the play? This polish edition is presented in the form of a screen play of five acts, whereas the French edition, supposedly following the original form is a novel of 27 chapters. Counting the scenes of the play ends up to much larger number than this of chapters. So, not comparing closer these two editions, the correspondence between the present Polish and French editions remains unclair. However, it is not difficult to understand that whatever the form, treatment of friendship, love, money and health, as it is still a central element in this story, has been a fascinating subject for more than 150 years. Not forgetting that as popular as the novel or the play is the third form of one of the most beloved opera La Traviata (woman lead astray, mislead, gone astray) by Verdi.

In spite of all this richness of human consideration, my verdict is only four stars, mainly because of, as it seems to me, artificially unnecessary splitting of the message to too many mouthfuls of insignificant crunches.

37. Book por, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Eca de Queiroz: Contos*****

Useful in learning language

This review is from: Contos (Portuguese Edition) (Kindle Edition)
In every respect this book deserves all five stars: the stories and the technical layout and manageability. The only thing missing is the automatic time markings of all entries into the orientation file of bookmarks, notes and highlights.
My main idea in reading this book has been learning the Portuguese language. In this aim Kindle helps in three superb ways. First, there is the possibility of marking interesting passages of text as highlights to which you can easily return. Secondly, you have an instantaneous access to dictionary getting the dictionary entry in front of your eyes, before you could even grab a heavy paper dictionary, even if it lied at a reach of hand. Third, you have the possibility of commenting what you read, thus helping to memorize words and idioms.
In this case the stories themselves also help directly to the learning of language. The text is rich, but completely straightforward. No meaningless passages, where the readers mind could start going astray. Many contos are familiar from readers earlier experience. Thus for instance the last two: one a fascinating imagination of Odysseus's life as a divine prisoner. The last story is a fine summary of the main teachings of the New Testament.
When reading I have made markings of headings and subheadings aiming to make a table of contents with page numbers and location numbers to be placed as a note at the beginning of the book. Two purposes: getting the numbers for search access to the table of contents items and to a general orientation of the structure of the book. I find, as I think that everybody finds, important to know how far I have proceeded in my reading, how far is the next suitably stop in reading and how far I am from the end of the book. This is possible only if I can see the page numbers or the location numbers. I think that the page numbers, real or virtual, are in this respect more important, because we are accustomed to the pages in paper books. Even if the book would never have been printed on paper, it could be helpful to use virtual page numbers of about 2000 character long pages, as they are in average paper books.
I really can recommend this book as well as Kindle in general for learning foreign language. The only improvements to the present system would be the automatic time markings and the downloadability of the markings file for the benefit of still further elaboration by the reader. For time being I am attaching time markings in form of yyyymmddhhmm at each markings file entry preceded by three character code (hd1,hd2,wrd,...) just for later construction of table of contents, word lists etc by my own computer program.
The markings file is available by screen shots, as I do it. It would be more convenient, if it were directly downloadable. - Anyway, Kindle is a real revolution in reading, the most important after Gutenberg some 500 years ago!
38. Book por, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

José Eça do Queiroz: O Crime do Padre Amaro****

Another Dame aux camélias?

A certain reminiscence exists, but on the other hand: the sin of padre Amaro is a completely different story. At first, I even wanted to know, which was written first. Never checked, but am pretty sure that Dumas first, then Eça de Queiros. I also suspect that the very basic idea of the present story emerges from the masterpiece of Dumas. (Dummas 1847, Eça de Queiro 1875). But then, that's all. No imitation, neitner in story, nor in the background.

In Dumas the background is money, here it is the Catholicism or the Catholic Church. Both stories are love stories par excellence, but very different kinds of love stories. Although in mind at the beginning of reading, Dumas soon diappears , is forgotten, because of the strength of this unique of its kind. Sexual relationship between Catholic pároco and his gourgeous community member. No wonder that the Pope put this book into the famous index, the list of forbidden books. No reason to ever strike over - as far as the celibate is observed in Catholicism. At some stage of the story the author puts it very clearly, his attitude towards the celibate: "Celibato e a Igreja: por que proibia ela aos seus sacerdotes, homens vivendo entre homens, a satisfação mais natural, que até têm os animais?" The satisfaction of the most natural and impotant need is allowed to dogs but not to humans...!

Maybe, the celibate is mainly required to secure the obedience of the clergy. Grip of authority by the daily threatening heritary sin. Defying all this, the sexual relationship between the lovers is continued, secrecy enabled by lucky and happy coincidence of external circumstances. Until the reader starts to wonder, how this all can get to end. The holy secrecy of confession is treated, the sin of prostitution likewise. Which is greater sin, secret concubinace or half-open use of prostitution? All this is present in the book. The solution is abrupt and horrifying. Pregnancy and a complete disruption of the relationship from the side of the bride. The horrifying part being the death of the mother and the child. The only possible solution. The destiny of the other side, the ever persistent lover, the father, the great sinner, is left open.

The narrative strength of the story would actually deserve all five stars, but my ultimate condition: a personal touch, me not being only an onlooker, but also feeling participant of the story, not being fulfilled, four stars is the just verdict.

39. Book spa, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: spa

Engels Federico: Del socialismo utópico al socialismo científico*****

The path to scientific socialism

This book I selected, when looking for a suitable book to be read in Spanish after reading many Russian history books. I found it in the Amazon list of free books in a kind of disguise. Its author is in fact marked Anonimo. Only after reading the whole book I came across to the real author and the origin of the work. Anonimo was only the person who had this published this preface as an extract from Engels' original work.

Just an excellent summary of the development of social power from utopian to scientific socialism with stages of this process of class society taking shape through major social upheavals and reforms. Without special contemplation comes to mind, that this is an excellent summary of the historical background of the recent article published by Binga Tupamäki about the corresponding social development now and in the near future. Teenage Tupamäki in power and wisdom pounding coming and going all the recent publicity by professors and docents. Fitst I thought that I would be able to present this text as a background discovery for her writings, but I now think that she is already familiar with it, and has made use of it, so seamlessly it seem to be linked to her own views.
40. Book spa, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: spa

Hans Magnus Enzensberger: El Diablo de los números*****

Entertaining mathematics

I got exactly what I expected, even in more hilarious disguise than I could expect. Well-presented mathematics is not dull, nor as difficult as could be imagined. That is proved by this book. This is a text by an amateur to other amateurs, like me. I have been teaching 'higher mathematics' of differential dynamics for twenty years, but still as no professional, but just as an amateur, an economist by profession. So also the author of this book is presented as writer by profession. No need to shame for either of us. Mathematics belongs to everybody just as digital communication today. Like or not like, we all need them. Better take the spoon to graterul hand and enjoy it than grunch against it.

This book is not even ment to urgent everyday needs. It is purely entertaining, mental excercise like cross words or sudoku, needing just slightly more concentration than newspaper comics strips. But it also gives more, evokes thinking, free of responsability. To hell with responsability! What an idea of the author to introduce the usher of notorious hot place with his poker presenting the topic to a tergiverant boy! Or me, an octenary pensioner. But correct: the stuff has the same taste for both of us, delicious as peanutbutter on the toast. Some topics familiar with new aspects of them, some completely new.

First of all, the firemaster puts down big numbers and brain breaking by calculation. Number one is enough and mere counting as mathematics. With these two you will go far and construct all kind of edifices, triangular and quadratic, all covered with numbers. One of the first things is to liberate the old Romans from their clumsy numberless prisonership. What a relief! Actually a wonder that this so distinct liberation has remained incomplete up to our days, Roman number marking is still widely used for years and order markings. I have always wondered, why? Have not found other reason than the writers' desire to show their freedom of and disgust of mathematics. Another might be the avoiding of the zero, not belonging at all to the Roman culture.

But what about more fanciful things definitely outside the everyday use? Such are the irrational numbers, a strange concept, for which no amount of numbers put into queu are enough, or prime numbers, strange lone riders having no connection with their neighbours, or Fibonacci numbers, accidentally invented, nobody knowing how to explain them, but dominant in the whole Universe from sandgrain to galaxies, vegetal, animal world. No wonder that the poor boy Robert wakes from these number dreams, when head, when legs on pillow, when sitting on the floor. Always looking as dropped from the moon or at least from a tree. Maybe confused, but ever more curious to know more. From this friendly hornheaded grandfather, almost like myself, grandfather of six grandchildren.

I am overwhelmed, enchanted, animated, five stars from amateur to amateur. Helas, hoorray!

41. Book ita, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: ita

Elena Ferrante: Storia del nuovo cognome****

Una porzione di spaghetti

Or a congregation of the meadows was the first obligatory impression of this book. An enormous number of people and a complete criss cross of relationships between them. I should haver perused the presentation of the person present in this stpry, but considered it too long. Only after finishing the book did I acquint withis excellent list. In fact I have sometimes wished that the authors would have the habit of giving one at the begonning of the book. This is the first time I meet one. Partklarly the great Russian classics would need it. In this case even more. And it is there. A list of ten families and two other groups of people present in this brook. Each comprising some 5 people, thus altogether of mor than 50 people. True, they have different characterizations, but at the beginning it is impossible to kéep them apart.

Ninety percent of the pages from the beginning is this strjggle of identification. Everybody seems to have contact with everybody else. Adding to the confusion that the first names seem to be chosen so that you cannot tell whether male or female. A vsry special feature of this book. At the very last oart ofthe book this confusion disappears, both because the reader gradually becomes familiar and because the story turn out to more concentrated. About on pages 200 I was so irritated on this to and fro supermarket of mainly sexual relationshios that I decided that fifty pages would have been enough to tell this story and maximum three stars could be allocated to it, very properly titled something of change of last name.

But then, surprising, at the end a completely coherent vision opened. Along with a new family of four. And the narrator of her own life emerged from the mob, so to say. The story turned to a self biography of a successful writer with all expectaions beginning to be fulfilled. As if the author reaally would nave had a story of some 50 pages in mind, but needed the rest to reach the measure of a marketable book. Still cannot get rid of this feeling. But because of this superb end and very colorful wording all over, the author's share from my part is four stars.

42. Book ita, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: ita

Ken Follett: I giorni dell’eternità*****

Another favorite Follett

Already before opening this book, after having read four other, did I know the number of stars I would give this book having read it. And I was not disappointed. Neither do I regret having paid fourfold price for this compared to my books in average. Follett is sheer enjoyment from the first page to the last. No question about that. You can only expect what curiosities he invents this time. There are, true, certain repeating stereotypies, but I would sooner be disappointed not finding them than encountering them in all his books.
Much love, both in spiritual and in physical senses. A master of both, a souvereign of the latter. His secret is, in my opinion, an unfallible good taste. Another particularity: Follett is able to write 1500 pages, as in this case, without resorting to guns or almost without resorting to violence. The latter to me a condition sine qua non.
This book is, despite its ephemerous title, maybe the only ephemerous expression in the whole book, an excellent history of mankind between the rising and tearing down of the Berlin Wall of shame between us human beings. It is just very curious that I have been twice in Berlin, left it two weeks before the first event in 1961 after two months of presence and a couple of months before the fall of the wall in 1989. Both just coincidentally, no actual connection with these fatal events. Follett tells what happened to me and us all others between these marking pillars of the world history. In a fascinating way, on private, medium and high level of society and several key nations.
This time I will not go into the very details of the events, partly because of the manifold of them. Just mentioning that key persons of the highest level are treated up to the most intime details, Chruschev as well as Kennedy and some others. And despite of this, Follett has the guts to maintain in his foreword the usual scapegoat that all the names and incidents are purely coincidental, no connection to real. Better so, so deep under the skin and to so sensitive !ayers does he go. Spiritual characteristical differences of top Soviet leaders and an appallingly bold but so sympathetic bedroom relationship of Kennedy. The same approach is valid in the relationships of the executive layer of the main national societies Russian, German, British and American, occasionally touching some others.
All in all, this man is worth of a double Nobel, one in literature and the other in activity for the peace among people. No question of other than five stars out of five as an assessment of this book.

43. Book spa, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: spa

Ken Follett: La Caída de los Gigantes*****

A real master

Never heard of this author before beginning this book La Caida De Los Gigantes, although he seems to be a real master and champion of pages and volumes. And just of my genre, historical nonfiction. Having read some tens of pages I wondered why I never had seen him on the lists Nobel pretenders. Would well deserve the honour. However, he is in noble society of other failures such as Mika Waltari and Jaan Kross, the other two my favorite nonfictioners.
So, what makes Follett so great? His ability to come so close to the reader or better, never leave the reader alone. And how does he reach that? By continuous dialogue and observation of small things and details like the body and being of his heroes and their close surroundings.
In fact this is not the whole truth of Follett's approach. It has distinct levels. I can observe three: individual, local and world. For me by far the most attractive is his narration on the individual, personal level. However, his persons are not acting only on personal motives, but also on just local and world wide motives. With them the reader goes with hin likewise to beds and palaces.
I have lately and deliberately chosen grass root world citizenship as my angle of view as opposed to national, which history has amply shown to be destructive of individual human values. Killing man is the worst of crime on grass root level, but doing the same an act of heroism on the national level, war heroes being the most celebrated. This controversy is representatively considered in this book.
Although I so vehemently take the part of individuals, the most memorable sentences I have introduced in my notes are on the general human level. The first and most valuable to me seems to be the following towards the end of the book: "Los Catorce Puntos de Wilson y su Sociedad de las Naciones estaban pensados para cambiar por siempre jamás la forma en que los distintos países resolvían sus conflictos. Era una ambición estratosférica. En la historia de la civilización humana, ningún político había tenido jamás tan altas aspiraciones. Si lo conseguía, sería la formación de un nuevo mundo." This as well as the following assessment of World War I very strongly hit my pacifistic mind. "Ethel estaba amargamente decepcionada. Los hombres de siempre seguían gobernando el país. Los mismos políticos que habían propiciado millones de muertes, de pronto lo celebraban como si hubieran hecho algo maravilloso. Pero ¿qué habían conseguido? Dolor, hambre y destrucción. Diez millones de hombres y niños habían muerto sin razón alguna."
On top of all, I cannot leave uncited a third passage close to my angle of view: "—¿Sigues siendo anarquista? —¿Te molestaría? —Supongo que me pregunto si la política podría separarnos. —El anarquismo es la creencia de que nadie está legitimado para gobernar. Todas las filosofías políticas, desde el derecho divino de los reyes hasta el contrato social de Rousseau, intentan justificar la autoridad. Los anarquistas creen que todas esas teorías fallan, y que por tanto ninguna forma de autoridad es legítima."
I keep asking: is this last a tumbling stone for the self-respecting Nobel committee for not allowing Follett to the list? Or issues it the excessive individual level description of love-making, which caused me to consider grounding a whole new genre of books on my own lists, sensuality. Some strong candidates, much more one-sided than Follett came to my mind. Or is the worst tumbling stone still another passages of description of the most intimate and at the same times most natural acts of love? There are two descriptions of the moments of the loss of virginity. Never read before. Going too far under the skin? So I would have considered until I tumbled on them. In stead no blushing but arising some personal memories! Very big respect to the author about the way he does it, no chimeric hints but plain sympathetic words.
44. Book ita, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: ita

Ken Follett: L’inverno del mondo*****

Another Nobel class Follett

I have firmly decided: war books I will not read. Is'nt Follett's L’inverno del mondo, a deep diving description of out planet's fate in 1933-1949 a war book? Yes, partly, but it widely surpasses the typical war book limits. It is much more than just warbook. It is a warbook on family level crisscrossing the fronts with big leaps from Moscow to Berlin, to London, to Washington, and small steps also elsewhere. Not only family level, but also on the highest governmental level and the executing 'professional' level.
My interest is moving on the grass root family level, here and always. For me it is a deliberate choice in the present global world, shrinked by the technical development of communication. In those deep frozen Inverno years the world was sooner an inferno, far from global unity. On the contrary, deeply divided into two fronts - and three parties: East, West and Fascist Middle. But my favorite family level was all-embracing, then as it is now. To my satisfaction, that seems to be also the author's favourite level, although he seems to rule sovereignly also the othe two. In my reading there is a distinct difference between these three levels. On the highest goverment level, I cannot avoid keen interest, because of the clear-cut and simple fronts. I have no interest in the middle executive level. So I have, just reading Follett's thousand pagers, developed my ability of speed-reading, the whole screen of twelve times sixty characters in one or a couple glances. On the favourite family level, there is use both for speed-reading and for rapid word for word reading as well as for slow-down enjoyment. Speeded not to surpass uninteresting text, but because of the masterwork of author's short-sentence dialogs. Oh, how I love them!
Another rare technical feature is laudable in this book: the long list of persons, just familywise as it is my interest. However, the list is so long that no hope learning it. Also no urgent need, enjoying the text event by event, every day flow as well as the author's two alarm shocks of love making and ruthless violence, the latter sometimes so disgusting strong that desire to interrupt the wholereading almost wins. Luckily not, however, knowing tha you feel great satisfaction, soon and after having read the last page. True this time as always.
No hesitation of giving full five stars, marking them to notes already at the beginning. The only irridating feature of this book has been the lack of bottom margin information about the progress of reading. But surprise: downloading another book, Theroux's Wilden, finding this information in exactly the form suggested in my recent feedback up to page numbers instead of clumsy locations. And after that, hocus pocus: progress info also in L'inverno, but the old with locations instead of pages. Also that better than nothing. And sugar on the bottom, the button with the offer of the next Follett, 'I giorni dell’eternità' in speeedy delivery, so quick that I guess that it was actually delivered in advance, only waiting my acceptance, which it got after me having read the hopeful starting year of 1960. Here Follett seems to surpass his norm limit, the length of the book is some 1500 pages!

45. Book eng, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Ken Follett: The Modigliani scandal*

A forgery of a forgery of a forgery?

What on Earth happened in this book? Maybe a forgery of a forgery of a forgery? i don't know. I completely lost the line after a couple of the first pages. Tens of completely insignificant dialogs until page 100. Could have been written by anybody. Then a recognizable Follett popped up. But still I was deeply disappointed. Could not follow the line. My fault: not even a rudimentary acquaIntance with art world. Felt as if the exact purpose of Follett had been to show just that, my, the general reader's lack of cultural education. I was ready to damn the book to hole of earth. Then there was the rounding up of the intrigue, the vernissage. Follett recognizable, but the subject matter still not, if not a scandal of a forgery of a forgery with Follett sneering at the background?
I pull a leg to Follett: one star.
46. Book spa, summary: ajkNotes

Ken Follett: Notre Dame****

Another Golden egg by Follett

A talented author produces on the level of talents whatever topic grabbed. So does Ken Follett. And the present topic of Notre Dame of Paris is not for him whatever, but well acquainted and thoroughly investigated in his earlier works, above all in Los pilares de la Tierra. http://www.askokorpela.fi/AjkMye/ajk/aaa/Follett-Pilastri-ajk.htm
In this case of a short story the author shows and uses only part of his arsenal compared with his usual units of thousand pages or more. Here only historical facts and events, no personal intrigues, as usually breast by breast on various social levels. Of course some architectors and other church builders are mentioned and even the triumphal parade and last bullets under the leaderships of general de Gaulle by few features described. The main event remains, however, the sombre fire of complete destruction of the cathedral in 20190415. One of the introductory citations is a heading in Paris Match: Hoy la lloran en todas las lenguas.
Keeping in mind all the other masterpices of this author just 4* seems to be the correct assessment.
47. Book spa, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: spa

Ken Follett: El hombre de San Petersburgo****

El hombre de San Petersburgo

Follett is a fascinating narrator, no question about it: incredible sense of situation, ability of creation of situations with few everyday life details! On the other hand, he produces long passages of monotonous detailed description without any interest for the reader. With Follett I have exercised speed reading, as I feel, with double speed, not losing the general run of the story. This particularly in two cases: dull account of technical details and delicious dialogues. In the former, to rush forward in reading, in the latter, on the contrary, to maintain the touch to the situation, possible just thanks to Follett's admirable ability or clear and sticking to familiar details in wording. Another Follett speciality is his description of sexual intercourse. In those cases you are drawn to participate sooner than peep through keyhole. All in all, he has the ability of awakening reader's emotions. This is the explanation of the large editions and fairly high prices of Follett books.
In this case the intrigue consists of a strange mixture lf Russian and British life style. The geeneral backgrojnd is the time of the outburst of the First World War. The formation of the front participation is clearly explained. At first, there is thhe confrontation of the old enemies of Germany and France, England having old fish debts with both of them. The decisive step is the participation of Russia and formation of the Eastern Front between Russia and Germany, thus alleviating the pressure between Germany and France. Follett avoids going to the war itself, describing only the action, or sooner the movements, cat and mouse hunting of the Petersburg man and his family connections with the British high society. The whole story ends in genuine Follett way with a big fire and the mouse slipping to Russia the cat having biten to death the original big rats with glycerine teeth! With Follett it is as simple as that.
For myself this was predominantly a good lesson of Spanish language and hitting idioms. In long passages of war party speculations I hated reading and considered dropping it altogether, but considering Follett's other merits continued.
It would not be fair giving Follett less than four stars. So, four stars for Petersburg. Still staying Follett fan and searching the next suitable F volume, this time assuring by sample that the text is presented with the possibility of having constantly visible the bottom margin information of location or preferably page and percentage of the total. Necessity of clicking to see them irritates me grossly!

48. Book ita, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: ita

Ken Follett: I pilastri della terra*****

A masterpiece of narration

Ken Follett: I pilastri della terra (A Column of Fire)
Complete management of a wide variety of intrigues.
Several levels of intrigue. Hierarchy of intrigue levels. While reading impossible to follow all levels of intrigue. Main level: intimate heroes of the story in their social and physical environment. Subsidiary levels: high society of gentry and religion, local authorities, local activity
When reading the course of main level capttures a complete attention to the flow of text, memorising the chain of events, easy reading and full enjoyment of well-formulated text.
When reading the flow of subsidiary intrigues it is unable and unnecessary to attend completely the flow of narration, uninteresting, possibility of applying speedy reading to about double of the speed of full memorising.
Clear distinction of good and bad people and events and battle between them causing the tension of the intrigue. The reader expecting the preponderance of good over evil is experiencing severe disappointments. The author seems to be fully aware of the reader's expectations, describes the events into exaggerated details raising the feeling of acclamation and disgust to extreme measures. This seems to be the secret of the popularity of the author. But at the same time the key to the disgust of the reader towards the exaggerated power and appearance of evil. I think: to the extent that this author is not appearing on the list of Nobel prize pretenders not to speak of winners! In my case it causes my vacillation between the assessment of four or five stars. At halfway reading it was impossible to foresee the outcome. At the end: no doubt of giving all five stars. A big merit is the fascinating mode of narration using great variety of modal and temporal nuances. What might be the share of the obviously excellent translator, whose name I did not find published to my astonishment.

49. Book hol, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Anne Frank: Het Achterhuis*****

Distressing and Encouraging

Indeed at the same time distressing and encouraging, a real masterpiece of the 14 year old girl. Honest and hopeful in utmost precarious circumstances both in time and in place. The story of eight and more persons in a backchamber during Nazi occupation of Holland.
I had read this book some sixty years ago. Since then it long time haunted my mind until gradually disappeared to twilight of forgetfulness. When beginning now I did not remember what finally happened. Not the worst possible, as it now turned out. But what happened to Anne Frank later? That was left open.

I myself have lived the atrocities of the war. My home was only 2 km of the present frontier between Finland and Russia. So our family was three times evacuated: the first time mother with three children, the two other times with five children, twins being only two weeks old when the second time. Father being on the front all times. I as the oldest started school in 1944 at the age of 7.

But the big difference was that we never had to hide and the second that we, as I understand, had no lack of food being a family of farmers. At that age there were no romances like in the case of Anne. Grandparents followed us, but they were so old that they were more a burden than help in family life.

In both cases, in Anne's and in ours, the same queston remains: why? Why cannot people tolerate each other, but start using queer politics and automatic weapons to kill people having the same everyday way of living, being parents, sisters, brothers, children with same basic needs of food, clothes and shelter. Ther are no winners in the wars, but only losers.
50. Book est, summary: ajkNotes

Ute Frevert ja Heinz-Gerhard Haupt: 19. SAJANDI INIMENE*****

One of the most important history books

Ingenious idea of a history book: an impressive collectiom of expert writers and a giant amount of knowledge behind them. But shamefully completely spoiled by using a miserable reader. - Or I cannot use it properly.
Whatever, I am boiling of anger! How can you use a reader program, the name of which does not deserve to be mentioned, which does not allow to be done reader notes via clipboard? Completely inimaginable: hampering but not forwarding reading and learning. Should I buy the paper version, scan it and then read making proper notes? Not unknown experience.
Apollo: how about using PDF? My main purpose is not just history, if one of main topics, however, but learning languages. Using dictionary and making notes of idioms. No avail in this case. Even if brilliantly fluent translations into Estonian. Only the chapter of medicine did not arise water into mouth. No further Estonian, no further Apollo, if no proper reader program!
However, no question of less than full five stars. (original)
51. Book spa, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: spa

Milton Friedman: Un legado de libertad Milton Friedman en Chile*****

A common sense argumentation for market economy

Milton Friedman is one of the greatest economist of our days. That qualiification he shows clearly in this book, too. I could not but transfer citation after another to my notes. No need to look up any word in dictionary. That, too, more testimony of his skill than of mine. His argumentation goes on axe and hammer level tools. No finesses, just everyday common sense, no breaks in logics, easy to follow.
His bias for private against government is well-known. Does not disappoint here either. The only context where he dares on thin ice is when he hammers flat the nordic wellfare policies and keynesian ideas in one breathtaking. Even I am ready to defend the idea lf social wellfare state, even though havin deliberately a couple of years ago adopted the strict grassroot standpoint and worldview. Friedman's main target is inflation, fight against it. The times of mid-seventies flow into my mind. In 1973-74 I was in America, close to Friedman, but not close enough, not in Chicago, but in Wharton Philadelphia, in Lawrence R. Klein's custody building my sharpest tool for the rest of my life, an econometric macromodel of my own country Finland. Klein, anotherNobelist, represents a somewhat softer attitude towards government participation in the economic process by being the author of the remarkable book The Keynesian Revolution. I owe to Klein the mmathematical solution algorithm of my macromodel, a dynamic equilibrium model of second degree difference equations.
What is the fascination of this book? In short: the dialog, so seldom seen, in conditions a laboratory atmosphere about real macroeconomic problems. I ask myself, whether it originally took place as a dialog of 22 question and answers, or was it just afterwards so formulated. In any case a masterly way of focusing the confrontation of grand theory and a crisis of the real world. World crying advice in an extreme situation and getting it fortified with convincing examples. And, helas! After due maturation time, the Chilean wonder could be observed, success of a totalitarian junta in a market economy exercise!
A unique experience of speedreading a christal clear text considering big problems, without stopping at unknown technical terms or alien words. One of the most clear cases of five stars assessment! (Ajk)

52. Book eng, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Fullerton George Stuart: An Introduction to Philosophy*****

An excellent path to philosophy

Fullerton's Introduction to Philosophy is an excellent path to the fascinating aspects of philosophy, still today, although first published hundred years ago. True although he says in his preface the opposite that "there cannot be said to be a beaten path in philosophy" and that he concludes his discussion of 'modern philosophy' by the admonition of his thesis 93. DO NOT HASTILY ACCEPT A DOCTRINE. But that is what philosophy is: a cavalcade of controversies.
Fullerton announces his aim in six points:

  1. To point out what the word "philosophy" means.

  2. To explain the nature of reflective or philosophic thinking.

  3. To give a general view of the main problems in philosophy.

  4. To give account of some of the most important doctrines in philosophy.

  5. To indicate the relation of philosophy to other sciences.

  6. To show that the study of philosophy is of value to us all.

The text is divided into parts correspondingly and emphasized in 93 theses. All in all it is easy to see that behind the presentation there is an experience of years, perhaps decades of teaching the subject to university students. No hunches but systematic and careful and well founded formulations to an audience first time meeting this subject. Therefore still today recommendable an introduction. And for that matter: philosophy is one of the oldest fields of systematic thinking, not outdated or obsolete in a century out of twentyfive at least. So, Fullerton can really be recommended, in the discussive sense of 'Socrates, that greatest of teachers'.
53. Book hun, summary: ajkNotes

Gárdonyi Géza: Ábel és Eszter*****

Another love story of its own kind

Here is an ardent love story completely without the physical aspect of love between man and woman, at the same time full of fire and platonic. How come?
As it has been the common habit that parents have decided about marriages, this kind of story has not been uncommon, depending on the strength the moral power of parents. In this case no question of parental power over Eszter and deep mutual love between Eszter and Ábel. From Ábel's side, the platonic brake is the usual, missing wealth matching the requirements of the other side, the family of the girl. Ábel has just started as an owner of a small bookshop, barely earning own livelihood, no hope of sustaining a family. Therefore secret meetings with just handkisses. But mutual overwhelming enchantment, also from the side of the girl, for whom the bridegroom, a future doctor has already been chosen. The parental decision is revered, but no love has been born. The planned marriage becomes true, but the love between Eszter and Ábel does not die, but burns in high flames. It stands also any spatial changes. Neither does length of separation time destruct the ardent love, alhough without physical touch at occasional close meetings with only fingertip kisses. So it continues through the whole lives and marriages, even with children on both sides. Eszter's daughter becomes very fond of uncle Ábel, climbing even to his knees at first sight thus arising some faint doubt about the platonic love between Eszter and Ábel. Towards the end of the story there is a long pause, during which all partners on both sides die. At the very end the lovers meet as by accident, arise bocals in honour of the long pause and start a new life finally together with gray hair, but red flames of love.
No doubt of five stars for just positive feelings all over and at many unexpected and surprising turns, but not in the main thing, deep love between Eszter and Ábel.
54. Book hun, summary: ajkNotes

Gogol: A köpönyeg*****

Who could write a modern köpönyeg?

This is one of the pearls of the world literature, The overcoat by Nicholas Gogol, now and then mentioned in any daily occasion together with The Nose and Dead Souls.I guess because of the simple and somehow mind-irritating or easily memorable title.But what about the very subject matter of the book?Who has read the book, knows right away the reason of the popularity.Look only for a more hilarious reading!You cannot call it humorous, nor call it irony, neither light-hearted leisure.It is just hilarious.That is the right word.Serious, but easy steps into the depth of human mind.A colourful description of life some 150 years ago.Who could write something similar of the present world lower middle class life?
I took this book out of sheer quirk, just to have some good reading in Hungarian.Turned out a good choice.Almost ashamed that I have not read it before and in Russian.Now ready to swear that this will happen sooner or later.Another tidbit will be the same author's Nose, I don't mean the organ, but the book.The Dead Souls I did read long ago.No question about the amount of the stars.Five, of course.
55. Book rus, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: rus

Наталья Валентиновна Гуэ: *****

Timeline of a love story

Already third love story without sex! Or was there one night, just mentioned, not commented? But a true love story with ups and downs and genuine feelings that never died although souls separated. Colourful top level narration without the first dull sentence. Honest description of traditional and modern Russian way of life. Wide circle of relatives and friends keeping dense mutual contacts. Food and culture and particularly for me: no violence or war heroism.
Simply, I fell in love with the writer of this book, the same kind of friendship love as I have felt with a couple of other Russian women in my life and now lately in television stories. Real strong women, no whining feminists.
Only one feature in this book I would like different, a technical thing. The timeline type narration is in its most fervent run interrupted by background thoughts dressed into bold italics. For me this is completely wrong, sounds as citations of loudspeakers in stead of sighes of deep feelings, correctly presented as thin text in brackets. I even would like to show them correctly placed in my usual translation as language exercise into English and Finnish.
Searching, in vain, further text by this author I acquainted with ratings of this text on Amazon site varying from disgusted to lauding I do not hesitate taking the top of the latter, five stars.
56. Book fin, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Gurdjieff: Kohtaamisia merkittävien henkilöiden kanssa****

Did I become Gurdjian by one stroke?

Opening the book Meetings with remarkable men by Gurdjieff I remember at once Voltaire, whose collected works I am also reading. In his best philosophic writings he is heavily whiping Catholic Church, so heavily that I lost my confidence to the belief that any-one of the existing religions would know anything about God and the relationship between God and man.
But Gurdjieff seems to surpass even Voltaire in satir, not even needing to rise above man or go into the world of fantasy. He speaks of the contemporary phenomenons. I just wonder, of which time? It seems to be of the period about hundred years ago. So I also at once am ready with the opinion that it did not at all turn out that way.
Any way, Gurdjieff's thoughts are dew fresh. Full of (in)sane self-confidence.
Gurdjieff's wordings are finger-licking full of all kinds of peculiarities which emanate from his gospel, which he in turn with all powers keeps skin-close to familiar things and auctorities. This I mean when he speaks of the 'lawful cosmic consequences flowing to him constantly'. Lawful, that is personally obliging, and cosmic at the same time. That is: exactly what all religions tell.
A further example of his fresh linguistic inventions is his allegory of 'swing of thought'. That is: the complete methodology of modern science! No more, no less. The double-ended sledge-hammer of empiricism and rationalism, the two-way sawing of building rational hypotheses and testing them empirically to find out the 'truth'. The 'swing of thought', delicious, delicious! Did I become Gurdjian by one stroke.
Yet, there is another aspect in the gospel of Gurdjieff. His fabulous and limitless exaggeration. Another great writer pops up in my mind, the famous author of the tales of baron von Münchhausen, not actually at all the author, but the canon ball rider Münchhausen himself. And still another predecessor of Gurdjieff, the French master Jules Verne. Gurdjieff is like Verne a master of mixing real science with fantasy so that the reader gets completely confused, but that in a very pleasant way. I even suspect that Gurdjieff has literally and intentionally used Verne's approach. The reader cannot but start questioning. Is it really possible to ride on the shoulders of an ostrich (Verne)? Is it really possible to somehow (if not directly by stilts) rise above the lethal layer of poisonous gas in the desert of Gobi (Gurdjieff). Reader's fantasy gets working, fresh ideas may emerge. That is how the progress of science takes place!
57. Book fra, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: fra

Yuval Noah Harari: Homo Deus*****

Hook line and sinker

I am ready to swallow this book 'hook line and sinker', actually have already done it.

Homo Deus by Yuval Noel Harari is a well-founded vision of our fate hence forward. In a way it shows how the long human history, much longer than we usually are taught to consider, becomes flesh. At the end of his 500 page treatment the author concludes: Aren't the organisms really only algorithms? That is, the collections of all the past wisdom, recipes of survival in full sense of Darwinism. I am indoctrinated. Proud to maintain that not only having read Harari, but gradually on the basis of my 80 years of life experience. Until now, however, the word algorithm has been for me just an important concept of mathematical thinking, hence forward I really feel having self become an algorithm together with everybody else and not just with people, but with all organic life. Sounds strange, but is very true.

Up to the treshold off the third millennium the formula of the wisdom has according to Harari been: Savoir = Écritures × Logique (wisdom = scriptures × logics), at present it is turning to be: Savoir = Données empiriques × Mathématiques (wisdom = empirical data × mathematics). Our hope is that the next stage of development is: Savoir = Expériences × Sensibilité (wisdom = experience × sensibility).

And what is the motor of this development? It is the information technology, automation based on digitalisation, wisdom stored in computers. There is an upsurge of inductive, childlike learning over the deductive, based on wisdom stored in paper books. We are just now experiencing this. We do no more open encyclopedies, but just 'googling' and getting better founded information than in the lecture rooms of universities. Only a complete already started revolution in education can be forecasted, in the spirit of Harari, a prophet of the new religion.

No less than five stars can seriously be suggested.

58. Book spa, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: spa

Yuval Noah Harari: De animales a dioses*****

A rising trend

This book of Yuval Harari, 'De animales a dioses' is a confidence arising interpretation of the history of human kind. The author does not hesitate to encourage the reader to expectations of positive progress of the story. And that is indeed coming, and in what an overwhelming abundance!

I find it very convincing and inspring that the author constantly refers to the time perspective and the proportions of different parts of it. However, more often than once I ask myself, how on earth has he managed to define them. Of course, we must trust to the recent archaelogical findings of paleontology, but then this 4000 million of years of the existence of life on earth? It is simply giddy, almost covincing to believe in darwinism and evolution in stead of creativism with all its questions arousing doubts of various natural phenomenons coming into existence without conscious supreme intelligence. Anything can happen in such length of time, where our ten thousand years of sapiens as the rulers of the world is like a grain of sand in Sahara. And he does not cease to mention these convictions without actually ever mentioning the alternative of creativism.

Another feature arising questions about the means of measurement is the amounts of population in various contexts. Being proud of the long history of accurate census information thanks to the official registers of our Lutheran church, the mentioning of the amount of population thousands of years ago or even hundreds of years ago are troubling the mind of a person like me with, as I like to say 'statistical world view'. This doubt most suddenly strikes when reading the amount of Mexican Indian population of 22 million at the beginning of the year 1520 and 14 at the end of the same year, this way drastically reduced by lethal disease, when Europeans contaminated with dangerous germs met the locals. Aztecs having working census?

But doubs about measurement do in no way dim the reader's look at the perspectives shown by the author. He treats separately biological and menthal development. There are ups and downs, parallel and separate, mainly upward and in close connection with environmental conditions. No big doubts, whether the resources would support the increasing population. More concern is caused by the constant state of war, peace being more exception than the rule. By the end of the book the wars between nations and groups of human turns out to struggle for power between biotics and pure dead matter. Originally programmed by man the bloodless helpers of man may turn to superhuman rulers of man. Everything turning to the final question of ¿Hay algo más peligroso que unos dioses insatisfechos e irresponsables que no saben lo que quieren? Is there anything more dangerous than dissatisfied and irrespective gods not knowing what tbey want?

A text enticing to read the other famous book by Harari Homo Deus, a short history of tomorrow, directly looking to the future perspectives. For his book without any doubt five stars.

59. Book spa, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: spa

Yuval Noah Harari: 21 lecciones para el siglo XXI*****

The third good Harari!

21 lecciones para el siglo XXI is the most up-to-date book I have ever read including all still in the air waving malicious jokes about Trump and other world leaders and good summaries of hotiron events on the world scene. Holding tight on actuality Harari is astonishingly able of joining the lessons of history to the present situation. One of his best statements about the recent developments is in my opinion as economist myself: 'El supermercado demostró ser mucho más fuerte que el gulag.' hinting to the crash of totalitarian Soviet system. Pity only that it seems to be returning back with incredible force and violence. One of my favourite quotes of this Harari is also the following: 'En particular, es vital recordar que héroes de la derecha, como Ronald Reagan y Margaret Thatcher, fueron grandes adalides no solo de las libertades económicas, sino también de las individuales. En una famosa entrevista de 1987, Thatcher dijo: «No existe tal cosa como la sociedad. Existe un tapiz vivo de hombres y mujeres, […]' This is because I have recently deliberately adopted as my new world view that of grass root world citizen, nearly utopian and hints of the original anarchism, mischievous of political nationalism as the root of all evil in the present world. Guns as the solution of neighboring relations in stead of tourism and trade and cultural contacts, so dramatically eased at our age of instantaneous world wide communication. This impossibility of setting watertight limits and frontiers between nations is our hope, so versatilely described by Harari, too. 'En la actualidad, la tecnología de la información y la biotecnología son más importantes que la industria pesada.' Really, heavy industry with heavy mass organizations replaced by biotechnology in our present economic environment means change of PowerPoint closer of grass root individual! Hurray from my point of view. Harari states how atomic bomb has become un suicidio colectivo en una guerra mundial. Still the human stupidity is one of the most important forces of the history. ¿Cómo podemos hacer que las naciones, las religiones y las culturas sean un poco más realistas y modestas respecto a su verdadero lugar en el mundo?
He treats the present ‘Posverdad’, palabra del año. ¿Hemos entrado oficialmente en la era de la posverdad? and complains that 'Algunas noticias falsas duran para siempre.'
The only part of this Harari book, which did not touch my mind and interest is his rather long treatment of science fiction. I happen to have no interest into modern sci-fi. It seems to me too steel cold and inhuman in complete contrast to the old of the type Jules Verne, the kerrnel of the art, although never denominated as such. My great favourite, never tired of reading it.
Despite the last unfavorable remark no question of giving all five stars as the recognition the exceptional skills of Harari.
60. Book fin, summary: ajkNotes

Harry Harkimo: Suoraan sanottuna*****

Harkimo: Plain talk

At first I was diappointed. Did not get the taste of the story. Partly it was the somewht inconvenient wording, some just plain talk expressions. I found also that Harkimo is doing what he finds inappropriate in others. Reprimanding people of their intolerance and narrow-mindedness. But also from the very beginning I found acceptable an good ideas in the text.
Having read two thirds of the book, the author starting to speak of economy and entrepreneuship, he won my complete sympathy. Here is a man who understans what these concepts mean. Only Nalle Wahlroos can be compared with Harkimo in this respect. Another supporter of market economy, the right kind of market economy and entrepreneurship, socially responsible market economy, social welfare economy, where individual human is the king. I share every word what he says about the role of labor market organizations as hampering the proper working of the market and the common good.
Also I greatly appreciate him as sportsman, although his sports are not my sports. Harkimo is supporting team sports, my sports are individual.
In the end I only turned more and more impressed of his text about love as the most important thing in human life.
No hesitation about giving full five stars for this book.
61. Book eng, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Kate Harper: How to make Ebook cover*****

Harper: How to make EBook cover

I have just made a book cover for a series of three paper books to be published in Amazon's CreateSpace system. I have also written short illustrated instructions and account about the step by step procedure. Comparing my page with Kate Harper's excellent book 'How to Make an e-Book Cover', which I recently bought and read in Kindle I saw where I had learned it. - In Kate Harper's book!

The mere table of contents is a complete summary for what to do. It is as simple as Kate Harper says: Make the text large, Put dark text on light backffrounds, Don't clutter text with images, Choose a short title, The title should say what is inside.
Then Kate Harper gives detailed instructions how to do this using Microsoft Word and the same using Adobe Photoshop. I did it still another way, using Paint and Word. The result looks very similar to Kate Harper's specimen pictures in her book. So the book can be warmly recommended not only for ebook covers but also for covers of paper books in self-publishing.
62. Book ita, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Heinrich Harrer: Sette anni in Tibet*****

A high level society of peace

It is not only high level in metres, bu also in human dignity, althogh different from ours. This is the main message of this completely extraordinary book. I am grateful to my literary mentor and classmate Viljo, who coincidentally became 80, when I finished the book. I had read Heinrich Harrer's Seven Years in Tibet as one of my first books in English for some 60 years ago. The memory of the first reading stayed vivid for a long time, many particular idiosyncracies up to this day. So starting this book I knew what to expect. But I did not remember, how long physically was the trip from the claws of war to the craddle of peace: snow, ice, slippery mountain paths, by foot, on yakback, no money, no food, many times just butter tea as nutrition.

Some third part of the book is devoted to detailed description of the fugitive journey from India to Tibet, finally to Lhasa, the sacred city. Luckily the bureaucracy was not watertight and there was the camouflage of pilgrimage and darkness of night to protect the journey through the country and society of Tibet. Harrer with his companion were saved, but the peaceful country of Tibet was simply swallowed, flesh and bones, by the tumultuous war camp of China. It still is, but not fully digested in 70 years
Harrer, in stead, was completely digested by te pacifist society of Tibet. Not the least by the dense network of contacts on personal level. Even if for us the strict hierarchy and rules of hyperreligious and paternalistic society seem completely impenetrable. The key of this riddle was mutual respect. No matter that Harrer would have tried to convert Tibetans to more developed western wiew of the world and heaven. Neither did Tibetans detest Harre's deepest convictions of the spiritual existence. Instead they were extremely curious of the many small practical inventions of the western cultures. At a time there was, for instance, only one car in the whole country. Naturally it served exclusively the top level religious lleadership, the Dalai Lama. Dalai Lama, then a teen age youth, is still among us as one of the highest respected human personalities, Nobel laureate, turned out a very talented technician, particularly interested in photography and cinema. These practical things markedly conveyed to a deep personal respect and friendship between the Divine King of Dalai Lama and the Austrian Olympic Champion of Heinrich Harrer.

But, as stated already, power soon overwhelmed peace and serenity. Dalai Lama was compelled to leave his country. Harrer did it voluntarily, but with melancoly. This book will most certainly long survive with the spiritual memory of its heroes as a testimony of the dignity of a pacifistic society and culture. No question about the number of the five stars.
63. Book eng, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Stephen Hawking: Black Holes: The BBC Reith Lectures****

Did I understand?

What means understanding something? What means detecting a star? What is detecting a black hole? I understand, am aware, believe that a black hole cannot be seen with my own eyes as I can see a star in the sky. What is seeing a star in the sky? Just a spot of light. What use can I have of this observation? Is it necessary to have any use of it? Oh this science! It causes more questions tha it answers.
On the level of this text, it is impossible to see the practical usefulness of science, although our everyday life is completely dependent and lying on the basis of science!
Four stars for the glimpses of hints to our experiences and the chance of reconstructing an encyclopedy out of smoke and ashes after it having been burned.
64. Book eng, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Hitz & Hart: Self-Publishing*****


As an active self-publisher I have downloaded and studied this thorough guide to every single step from scratch to book in self-publishing. Maybe even bigger leaps could be taken in order not to discourage a newcomer. But the first slogan in the preface is all but discouraging, just the opposite: "If You Can Dream It, You Can Do It!". And a host of pracitcal advice follows from "Eight Simple Steps to Get You Started Self-Publishing Books:" to versatile tricks in marketing the book. They can also offer a special guide book to just marketing. This shows that they really aim to educate the reader to earn money with the books. They even give a list: "10 Steps to forming an Independent Publishing Company".
I myself do not aim to earnings, but just to document the writings in a professional looking manner. I do not even publish my books, but books of my friends, memories and valuable collections of life long experience. All the same, this book on Self-Publishing is a good travel rod. And Amazon CreateSpace system exposes the books just in the manner the gallant ladies promise in their book. Making me feel a real book publisher.

A true travel rod to Self-Publishing
65. Book eng, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Thomas Hobbes: Leviathan***

A handful of pebbles

Actually not just a handful, but a whole courtyard, making it difficult to run around. Even if difficult, I do not regret having read this book with a unique title Leviathan. I have the feeling that I have always since my young schoolboy times been aware of this strange book and book title. What does it really mean? Something that does not exist? Something like Utopia? Yes, really, Utopka of just Thomas Hobbes. A thoroughly, in detail described society of ordinary men and women from Shakespeare era. Not only the life, habits and environment, but also the language of the book. Just as strange orthography and word order, difficult to understand as in Shakespeare plays. And in similar manner also true! Reading this book is really an exercise of abbrakadabbra. How could one stand it all 600 pages? The answer is: with a stubborn attitude and modest expectations of outcome. But that is not all. There is an unexpected helping feature in the text itself, a very comprehensive net of subtitles all over the whole book. Many writers would gain much following the exemple of Hobbes. The frequent subtitles correct and make good what the pebble form text leaves confused. At first occasionally, but soon systemathically, I made my notes of the whole book by copying the descriptive subtitles. They are so descriptive that sometimes I doubted, whether they were originally included by Hobbes himself or introduced later by some heureka experiencing reader. Their peculiar form hints more to the original author or at least to a contemporary helper: "Eternall Torments what" or "Angel what" or "Inspiration what". My main purpse of reading is learning more than just entertaining. For learning all headings and summaries are important aids. No harm of them in entertaining, either.
With all respect to the renowned author, I cannot from my point of view give more than three stars to Leviathan.
66. Book eng, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Homer: The Odyssey*****

A confusing reading experience

Homer's Odysseus is a vital basic work of the world's literature, but oh, so confusing as reading experience. Over ten years ago I read a poem-formed Finnish translforme in a reading group. Notes from that and these are like made from two different books. In the Finnish translation Greek-derived names of people and the gods has been used, here again Latin-based. This in itself is confusing for the inconvenience, until you get used to it. Another difference is the Finnish translation of verse and this outspoken, yet somehow poetic-bound unusual prose text.
The work and activity, the general course of events is quite clear, as long as is kept in mind that they are not told as events as they occur, but afterwardas as a travel account. Here a terrible number of people and gods are included. Only a limited number of activities and a vague impression of the importance of things fasten in mind. When reading you cannot avoid comparing life now and then. Odyssian life seems to be concentrated to more eessntial things than is our life. Just eating, drinking, dressing, and homemaking get more attention than in our life. All the action is in every respect more grandiose than it is now. People are gathered in big numbers. Whole pigs will be eaten, a lot of washing, rough behavior. Fighting for petty reasons, ruthless killing, but also generous treating: clothes, lavish gifts are given.
The difference in the relationship between man and god is really great. This of course, because of the fundamental difference between the polytheistic - monotheistic religions. We have only one God who is behind everything and decides everything perfectly. Ulysse's gods are many and they are dedicated to specific issues. There are contradictions between the gods and not just between people and human relations to the gods. But the gods are also closer to the people and behave like people. While here man is created as image of God, Odyssian gods are vice versa pictures of man.
Are there any books to which this unique story could be compared? Yes, to similar works of polytheistic worldview, such as the Kalevala, which even describes a journey, Sampo robbery and acquiring it back to its original use as the source of general well-being. Because the world of the Kalevala is more humane and refined, it is in my eyes more appealing than the heights of mountains and jagged environments of Odyssean world.
Although the plot is clear and justified, a question remains: Why does not Odysseus straight away go to meet Penelope? So would a hero of our world undoubtedly have done.
However, no way avoiding full five stars, mainly for the clarity and great features of the plot.
67. Book ita, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: ita

Khaled Hosseini: Il cacciatore di aquiloni*****

On the border of tolerating

How does it feel now? - 'Lrlajulta' (violent) replied the little boy Onni, with runny nose, the same also the author of this book: flying far-off from his home in Afghanistan to America, as Onni flied yesterday from Finland to Australia. Violent emotion had also the reader of this book after finishing the book. At the border of toleration. Here, today, the life is idyllic compared to what this book describes on two levels: the human life in the kite flier's mind fly and the environment in which he will fly his kite.
Startling is the abruptness of the limit between the two sides of this story. Related to the mother's two sons, one of the legal father of the hazara, a servant and a mud hut inhabitant, the second the user of the services and a resident of an ordinary house. One is shot lifeless and the other beaten half dead by a third risen to political power. Hassan was indeed later proved to be the half-brother of the author, and his uncompromisingly faithful servant until death. Despite the difference in social positions boys are best friends and invincible couple of kite-flyers. Better-fated got a lifelong trauma when he left his servant stranded in front of three hooligans.
Boys' paths are separated when the author of the book and his family emigrate to America. However, the narrator cannot get rid of the remorse, but will return to pick up his nephew out of the clutches of the cruel environment. But it will not be for free. He is beaten in front of the eyes of the little boy and barely copes with the orphan boy home to America. The boy from all this, and, above all, a betrayal of his new father's promise of saving him of orphanage makes a desperate act. At the end of this book, both shipwrecked heroes, however, receive a hand gushing blood with the kite string. And the son's, turned to not speaking, bitter furrow at corners of the mouth changes to hopeful smile.
The World conquering book earns full five stars for its fresh and bitter content.
68. Book eng, summary: ajkNotes

Hourly: Age of Enlightenment*****

Giant pygmy

This book is really a Giant pygmy of knowledge. Quite exceptionally well-written. The text contains no unnecessary words, but such a myriad of succinct expressions and sfatements that it made me a criminal, breaking the severe prohibition of copying the text by any means. I always make notes by copying text highlights to my Notes. Usually one per several pages, but in this case several on one page, as there were so many golden grains summarizing known and unknown characterizations of this importat historical period of human civilization.
Keenly following Tokyo Olympics, I thought that I could at the same time read this easily readable text as tidbits in between. No way! First I stopped readig and continued Olympics, then stopped Olympics and continued this Hourly, as I have had to note the author of the book. Not revealing name, but asking in first person a short review, which I would anyway have submitted followed by the rating of five stars.
69. Book eng, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Hourly: Silk Road A History from Beginning to End*****

An Artery between East and West

Everybody knows about the existence of the Silk Road. This Hourly book offers an amazing amount of flesh on bones to the primary school sceleton.
How was possible this thousand year old and eight thousand kilometer long road without pavemend or rails? The history is a chain of coincidental and determined events. Guess that the contribution of the Venetian 17 years old youth Marco Polo can be considered coincidence at the beginning, but scarcely that after his return from China 24 years later. On the other hand, although decisive, however mysterious and inconclusive. Undoubtedly the most influential as written during a three year long inprisonment.
It seems to me that the Chinese and other Eastern part of the Silk Road history is less coincidental, but dstermined by market forces and strong hands of Cinese rulers. They manged to withhold secret the production and processing of silk, thus helping the need of giant transport up to thousand camel caravans carrying some 250 kg loads 40 km a day from serai camp to another through roadless deserts. Only after two monks as spies sent by western commercial interests having revealed and transported the secret of silk to the Europe dis the Silk Road lose its original purpose the transport channel of silk. But then it was too late to lose its general significance. After silk, food, precious stones and other housebold appliances continued their flow on the Silk Road. And something more important, the Silk Road had become a strong link between the eastsrn and western cultures in gneral. Nowadays the Silk Road is even a fanciful tourist attraction.
Five stars in spite of the deeply deplorable mistrust of the publisher towrd its readers by not giving the Hourly author's name. No need to be ashamed.
70. Book fin, summary: ajkNotes

Juha Hurme: Niemi*****


20180420 A new discipline replaces religion in the classroom: open-mindedness. This is a textbook for compulsory examinations for student texts. Recognizing religions must be banned seriously.
20180422 I meant to tell you that I'm completely knocked out serving as a Member to read the first e-book right Finns, Juha Hurme elisa Niemi record Finlandia winners. Hurme has so far been a Palo class actor with one of his performances in 2000 in the summer of Kaaskerin Lundström by Volter Kilpi. Now he is a historian with Harari and Schainkman level performance. And even this is not enough. Now he turns out as a linguist to the group of great innovators. (See MyeBooks)
20180422 This is a lot more: competing with Volter Kilpi in the third place as a hub of the Finnish language after Agricola and Kivi. It's an incredible master. The spine in a winding way pierces a whole new career in language. Bring after the two previous masters to the written form of folk language. That this too must have been seen before the exit!
The best book I've read times, if not the best ever, for the three weighty reasons mentioned above. It's not little of more than a thousand I have read! 5 stars with no hesitation.

71. Book eng, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Stephen Jarvis: Death and Mr Pickwick****


Against all odds, this is a remarkable book. Why against all odds? Who ever has the guts to undertake writing of a parody of the great Dickens? A parody? What else could you expect with such a direct reference to the name of the great masterpiece? The Death of Pickwick. On the other hand, it could mean whatever.
And it really takes, not only pages, not tens of pages, but hundreds of pages, at least it did that in my case, to get convinced that this book really concerns the Pickwick of Dickens.
At first I was very disappointed with a futile formal feature: no division of a brickstone of a book into chapters, no headings. Such an unfriendly act towards reader! I have firmly decided to stop reading the famous South-American masters, not following the elementary use of punctuation. For me, headings in books are friendly handshakings of the writer. Reading on, I gradually lost my anger, understanding the fragmentary structure of the story. Hundreds of headings would be needed, many identical. This is not the appropriate line of critics in this case.
What, then, is? I do not know. In my case, the next irritating thing in reading this book was, what I already mentioned: uncertainty of whether this really concerned the great Pickwick of Dickens. Only after having read exactly 381 pages of the book did I become convinced. Having read almost 700 pages I have made a remark: 'Jarvis seems to be really deep in Dickens, story, style and details...' That also is my final unconditional verdict. No parody, that was clear from the beginning. But a history, an inquiry, a story of the birth, life and finally, as the title promises, the death of Pickwick. All described with great dedication and proliferation.
But before I came that far I had pains of understanding and following. According to my statistics of English language Kindle ebooks I look up an average of two words per hundred pages in dictionary, in this book I looked up 141 words, that is 18 words per 100 pages. It means that Jarvis uses an exceptionally rich vocabulary, to the benefit of language lover like myself.
Still another extra pain was, perhaps my own stumbling to a name and the person behind it: Mr Imbelicate. He comes up not far from beginning and pops up several times, finally even dies. But throughout the whole book, it is unclear to me, what is the time coordinate of this man: Is he a contemporary of Pickwick, or the author of the original story, or of the author of this book. Mr Imbelicate introduces Don Quixote as a story comparable or even model? for unending horsedbag travelling of the four Pickwick Gentlemen, Mr Pickwick and his companions Snodgrass, Tupman and Winkle, (and 'that intoxicated beast Sam Weller', as the real linguistic virtuoso, the servant of Mr Pickwick is called). Then I was completely shocked by the mention of Mr Imbelicate in a sentence: 'HAVE YOU SEEN the second movie in the Alien franchise?’ said Mr Inbelicate as he returned.' Mr Imbelicate, a timeless connoisseur of Pickwick and likewise as a movie watcher, that is, a citizen of the twentieth century. I am and remmain confused.
At an early stage I decided: four stars, mainly because of the author constantly pulling the reader's leg in various ways, but towards the end of the book my attitude softened because of the heavy points presented above. In the end, five stars would be more appropriate, no doubt, but four will do, as my vengeance for the legwork of the great author.
72. Book eng, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

JHingan MGirija-L.Sasikala: History of Economic Thought****

History of economic thought

Inspired by Amazon's concrete proof of reader appreciation, a small grant for suggestion of Kindle improvements to be used as paynent in future book purchases. I immediately invented use for it, started from beginning the studies for my past career, buying three big elementary text books in economics: History of economic thoughts, Macroeconomics and Microeconomics. Could you better invest the revenue from the original investment? I think that no, especially after having read this first of the books, the history.
On the one hand it is most entertaining and really excellently structured repeating of old acquaintances, starting from antique and even earlier and ending up to our times.
On the other hand, there are also quite many novelties for me, but also some disappointments.
As I said: well-structured. It means that provided with standard headings like lecture notes such as 'Introduction', 'Contribution to the economic theory', 'Summary', 'Conclusion', and all possible concepts of the subject matter and terminology of economics, such as 'Labor', 'Capital', 'Interest', 'Money and so on. The same with various hypotheses and theories. I find the straightforward use of this rubrication very welcome in this kind of book, handbook not being a false characterization of it.
A big disappointment is, of course, the absence of sone of my favourites, such as the econometric approach and its representatives, above all Lawrwnce R. Klein. Searching this more than 600 pages and hundreds of prominent students of economics comprising book does not give any mentioning of Klein, the winner of Nobel price in economics in 1980. On the other hand, a good compensation is a long treatment my other favourite Paul A. Samuelson, although with less emphasis on his tremendous career as elementary teacher of economics for my generation than on his theoretical contributions, which, of course, is the mainninterest of this volume.
I must confess that I exercised speed reading in several passages of the book. In some because they were so very familiar, but also in some because they would have too tedious to get properly involved. I must also apologize for using speed at the end of the book, the last chapter treating the share of Indian economists. To my defence I want to mention, however, that I highlighted some passages of Gandhi and Nehru, finding them interesting, although not being directly economists but important leaders, forcibly not being able to avoid economic standpoints.
All in all I find this book very praiseworth and worth congratularions to the author team of. ?. With keen interest I now crab the next book by the same team, Macroeconomics, even more close to my skin as retired teacher of just that subject.
73. Book eng, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

M.L. Jhingan: Macroeconomic Theory****

Jhingan: Macroeconomics

M.L. Jhingan: Macroeconomic Theory - e-mail : vrinda@ ndf.vsnl.net.in
This is a tremendous book. Having read it all through I would consider the reading a real feat, if I were a student of exonomics. But being a retired teacher of economics I find reading of this book a privilege, a great privilege, which I would gladly grant to all my colleagues being deeply grateful for it to the author M.L. Jhingan.
Thanks to the author's perseverance in carefully designed and throughout observed classification of all material reading and recognition of any subject is smooth and pleasant. Systematic usage of headings up to the fifth or sixth level makes it easy to find anything, familiar or new material.
With satisfaction do I find properly emphasizes the really great authorities as well as my personal favourites, such as the thunder-mighty founder of the whole discipline Adam Smith, then the grand old man of the science as a powerful tool John Maynard Keynes, both having their heavy word to say even in the present day situation, although with completely new challenges of the modern information technology. I have in mind the awesome advance of automation and simplification of personal participation, but going on just like in the famous pin producing example of Adam Smith.
With similar satisfaction do I note lines dedicated to the effective teacher of myself and all of my generation, Paul A. Samuelson, according to whose Economics textbook even I have structured my own, written soon 50 years ago. Further great names of those days as well as still present are Schumpeter, Hicks, whom the latter I have the honour to have even met at an occasion, ...
But from my point of view, there are, in my opinion, also some underemphasized authors and a whole field of discipline, which is econometrics. My personal tutor in the art of building and especially solving a macroeconomic econometric model L.R. Klein is mentioned and referred to in a couple of occasion for his fine work about the Keynesian revolution. Also the Dutch Jan Tinbergen. But in my opinion, the significance of econometric models as guidelines in forecasting and formulation of economic policy could be more emphasizes as the practical implementations of all the rich theories presented in this great volume.
But to use one of the author's favourite starts in appreciation of versatility of views: 'Despite these limitations...' or 'Despite these criticisms... I full-heatedly recommend this book to any and all teachers of economics as a treasury and reliable source for spreading the knowledge of economics. All five stars with an emphasizes enthusiasm.
74. Book eng, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Sabrina Justison: Uncle Vanya Study Guide*****


This kind of study guide is a new acquaintance for me. I just hit it looking something to help me summarize this fascinating play of Chekhov.
This Study guide by Sabrina Justison is a real tiny Piece of Gold for the purpose of comparison the versions. The author has really grasped the essence of the play in a versatile way. And not only this play but Chekhov's personality and contribution to the world of theatre.
The modernizers of my two last experiences have just introduced new tricks, a completely new approach on trick level and torn down the usage of speech to the street level jargon.
Chekhov accomplished far more: he went inside the skin of people in a different new way. It is obvious that the second of my modernized has adopted the cheap tricks of swim surfing in a bathtub of the first modernizer. I even suspected that may be the original text gives some hint to this. I read the original text to find out that nothing such exists in Chekhov's text, and I got the confirmation to this in Justison's study guide. No trace of surfing. In stead a fine classification of the personages, leaving, however, the final judgment to the student, theater guest. Chekhov is not presenting just heroes or happy ends. That is not his purpose and the essence of his contribution. As a practicing doctor he introduces the problems of life giving the limitations and lure of hope, but leaving the decision to the looker or reader. This is pointed out by Justison in her summaries and questions with provisory answers.
I was so impressed by this study guide that I looked up, whether Amazon would offer other study guides. First I accepted the search of 'study guide and workbook' offered by search input. What did I find? A host of guide books to the Bible and one to the Microsoft System! Both well deserving their share, of course. Dropping the 'workbook' gives an endless list of suggestions for study books in all fields of human (and animal) life. Need just to specify what you need and yor needs will be amply satisfied. I can only emphatically recommend! All five stars to Justison.
75. Book esp, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: esp

Franz Kafka: Metamorfosis***

A fairytale for adults

This masterwork of its kind, a signpost of modernism, as characterized in Wikipedia, arises mixed feelings, as it also certainly is the intention of the author. On one hand, masterly handwriting and unambiguous style, every word fulfilling its purpose. On the other: what is the final message? No message at all? Or to show the futility of existence in general?
At first I was enchanted by the straightforwad style of wording, knowing to expect some 'Kafkaism'. Not deceived, this time the metamorfosis of human body transformed to beetle with beetle's limitations of motion and communication. Expectation fulfilled. The only question that troubled me was the size of the body. If mentioned, I did not pay attention. He, Gregorio, the hero of the story, was afraid of being crushed by his father's big shoes. This is hinting to an ordinary size of a shit beetle. But being able to push a door more open to cross the threshold hints to a larger body size. At least at the beginning, the spiritual powers seemed to be ok. But soon the line of the story changed from the angle of the hero to the angle of the other participants, the family: the sister Grete and the parents and the maid and the hosts. The hero is first missed, then gradually forgotten, no mention of his thoughts is towards the end of the story given.
Full credit to the summary of the author being described as pessimistic tragedian or something similar. Maybe some, even many readers look for that in litterature. But not me. Therefore three stars is my general assessment
76. Book eng, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Daniel Kahneman: Thinking - fast and slow*****

My first psychology book

This review is from,h,Thinking, Fast and Slow (Kindle Edition)
With pleasure I return to this text in order to write a short summary in the spirit of the idea that it can be nicely joined as the last Note of the Kindle book and thus included in Notes, Highlights and Bookmarks file which follows every Kindle book and is any time available for the reader. Unfortunately only to be looked at, but not handled as a whole. This handicap can be overcome easily by screen shots. So, why does not Amazon allow it to be directly downloaded for the benefit of the reader for easier use as source material anywhere.
But returning to this stunning book I am in lack of sufficient overwords. I do not remember that I would ever have read any psychology book before. So I have read it as a complete layman, but had no difficulty at all understanding every passage of it. As a matter of fact the book is not only psychology, but a lucid presentation of the methods of psychology, common to all behavioral sciences, so to me as economist, too. This book has no side walks, but is the story of thinking, fast and slow, just as the cover tells. These two concepts I meet first time ever, but they are clearly defined so that even a layman dares to paraphrase them as effortless thinking and thinking with effort. Kahneman is a nobelist in just economics and well deserves it. Good thinking is also a matter of economics. That is compöetely clear. Another brilliant concept, which I meet first time here in this book, although it belongs outright to the central concepts of economics as well,h,WYSIATI - What You See Is All There Is. Do not smile, it is a serious term, not at all expressing something superficial, but is a profound characterization of human behavior.
Kahnemans presentation is completely based on experience and well organized simple experiments of how we think and decide things. And he does not at all hoist his own profile, but continuously refers to colleagues, quite especially beautifully to his defunt partner with words 'Amos and I'. You get the impression that if Amos Tversky had lived, he would have stepped side by side with the author to the podium of honor in Stockholm.
So there is no doubt of five stars for one of the best nonfiction books I ever have read. Already after having read a few pages I ordered a copy for my daughter, a professional psychologist. With keen interes I wait her comments.
77. Book ger, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: ger

Immanuel Kant: Kritik der reinen Vernunft - 2. Auflage**

Water from gooseback

A myriad of concepts is presented in this most famous classical work of philosophy. How ever ordered and logically correct, at least by this first reading can I grasp only glimpses of the text. A lot more practical simple examples would perhaps help. As it is now, the text, so to say, rises to the eye, but with no full strength to the brain. Because of weak understanding of highly abstract text I end up applying rapid reading.

A tight step forward with my need of place and time coordinates to notes: in this book I welcome the ordinary page numbers given dimmed in brackets in the middle of the text. Only joined without space to the preceding word. This makes that they cannot separately be picked to clipboard. So it is simpler to type them by hand. In order to get the desired combination of place and time coordinates only the end of timestamp directly obtained from the clock (of Kindle or the editor) needs to be added after the pagenumber, separated with any sign. I use comma, but even space would do. This practice requires that timestamp is added at the beginning of the reading session. Only bookmark with ready formulated time & place coordinates could be handier.
An armistice in the war between the Giant Kindle as Goliath and me as David is hereby declared. The final peace can be reached only by Kindle providing the timespace loaded bookmark. No hard feelings from my side even if this is the last book, where I see pagenumbers strewn into the text. Locations can always be transformed to (calculated) pagenumbers and vice versa. From the standpoint of reader, ordinary pagenumbers are clearly preferable as compared to long and clymsy locations. Locations indicate the progress of reading timely in matters of seconds, whereas pagenumbers in minutes, which is just the right measure for the reader.
Feeling full reverence and sympathy towards Kant, one of the greatest philosophers and this work as one of his masterpieces, but myself being just a humble amateur in matters of philosophy I cannot give more than three stars as my assessment of this book.

78. Book rus, summary: ajkNotes

Николай Михайлович Карамзин: История государства Российского В 12-ти томах****

Wide and overwhelming as Mother Russia

With high hopes and stern dedication did I grasp this book more than a year ago. Our big neighbor, Superpower, comprising one fifth of the global dry surface. One should have a grasp of its history. On the other hand, Karamzin's history is perhaps the most renowned authority of the story of Russia, therefore a must both for the connoisseur and a lyubitel.
Being a representative of the latter species, I feel free of expressing my opinion with very few references to other works in the field. And I must confess that my high hopes were to some extent disappointed. For me this book was simply too big and detailed. Too much wars, bloodshedding, fight for sheer power over land and labor, fractiles of society. It is astonishing how much attention is paid to wars and aggressive attitude towards other governments, although the country is such a giant. Nothing can really defy its existence or seriously hurt its sphere. True, it has not always been clear, where the borders go. And there have been invasions, not always in friendly purposes of commerce. Beginning from wikings, varyags a they are called in Russian usage, whose deliberate politics was trade only if the village on the shore was too big to be plundered. Even more hostile were the invasions of khans fron the Big East and Sultans of Turkey. It has always been the destiny of Russia to stand between Europe and Asia in good and evil, trade and aggression.
Not only outer, but also inner fight for power is a main object of this book. It is well-known that Russian character is at the same time individualistic and dependent of authority. Ivan acts as he has always acted, but he also expects attention from authorities. And for him authorities are not only faceless institutions, but human beings. I have with my own ears heard Russia use the common form of expression: 'Putin gave' showing by hand a new house of culture. So it has always been. Landlords have given, Tsar has given. Even the citizens give, there is a form of taxation by name 'dar', give. This and much more Karamzin tells us in his book.
One of my disappointments was that the story ends so soon. It is written at the beginning of the 19th century and the story ends at the beginning of the 17th century. I would have liked it beginning where it ended. Luckily I have had the opportunity to read two other works on Russian history: The complete lectures of Russian history by S.F. Platonov and History and philosophy of Entrepreneurship in Russia by Y.A. Pompeev. They both cover the time until the revolution a hundre years ago. The newer history of Russia is still a completely different story as it is well-knowll. Platonov is generally known a topmost authority compared to Karamzin, for me even more attractive. But best of these all I like Pompeev, because it is concentrating to peaceful everyday life on grass root level of ordinary people in their striving to earn livelihood and organize activity for that purpose.
Four stars in spite of disappointments.
79. Book eng, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Brian Kemple: Essential Russian grammar*****

A lot to be ruminated

Dull as all grammars, but deeply convincing. Presenting this grammar the author is modest and warns several times of its limited nature. When reading it you get the opposite feeling. It seems that nothing is forgotten. Versatile and carefully formulated explanations are always provided with examples and translations. Stress is always indicated. Much trouble is seen to overcome the limitations of the screen. A special treatment is offered for complicated tables. You may click and get the table as such without surrounding text in front of you and the return back where you were.
It is easy to see that this publication emerges as chrystallization from a long experience and careful documentation.
The author has well deserved five stars.
80. Book eng, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

John Maynard Keynes: y*****

Corner stone of modern macroeconomics

Today this masterpiece of John Maynard Keynes hits the head of the nail as accurately as it did 80 years ago despite of so complete changes both in the pane, nail and hammer. But the changes are valid only in the appearance. The essential forces behind the economic process remain the same: supply and demand. How these universal elements get reconciled? That is and was the question.
Keynes takes the bold grip and proposes not less than a General Theory as the solution of this big question. So pretending in Economics the positon of Einstein with his Theory of Relativity. Not without comparable success. Einstein's Relativity and Keynes's General are perhaps not the very ultimate truths, but they are at least not easily repudiable hypotheses, anyway.
The crux of the General Theory is unemployment, the moment of friction between supply and demand. Easily defined, but everything else, but easily suppressed. In his General Theory Keynes concentrates above all to the role of interest and investment as the tools of restoring full employment. Despite of these factors being mentioned in the heading of the
General theory and being discussed extensively in the text with rich and remarkably polite references to contemporary and recent colleagues they are not considered the main levers to full employment.
The central role is played by the propensity to consume. This is made clear in several passages of the text.
"It is no new thing, however, to ascribe the evils of unemployment to the insuffidency of the other constituent, namely, the insufficiency of the propensity to consume."
"(Mandeville concludes:) The great art to make a nation happy, and what we call flourishing, consists in giving everybody an opportunity of being employed; which to compass, let a Government's first care be to promote as great a variety of Manufacures, Arts and holdings of money..,"
"Thus, since the expectation of consumption is the only raison d'être of employment, there should be nothing paradoxical in the conclusion that a diminished propensity to consume has cet.par. a depressing effect on employment."
And further, referring to the other giant of the field: "Adam Smith has stated that capitals are increased by parsimony, that every frugal man is a public benefactor, and that the increase of wealth depends upon the balance of produce above consumption."
We are thus brought to the conclusion that the basis on which all economic teaching since Adam Smith has stood, viz. that the quantity annually produced is determined by the aggregates of Natural Agents, Capital, and Labour available, is erroneous, and that, on the contrary, the quantity produced, while it can never exceed the limits imposed by these aggregates, may be, and actually is, reduced far below this maximum by the check that undue saving and the consequent accumulation of over-supply exerts on production; i.e. that in the normal state of modern industrial Communities, consumption limits production and not production consumption. Finally he notices the bearing of his theory on the validity of the orthodox Free Trade arguments: "We also note that the charge of commercial imbecility, so freely launched by orthodox economists against our American cousins and other Protectionist Communities, can no longer be maintained by any of the Free Trade arguments hitherto adduced, since all these are based on the assumption that over-supply is impossible."
His most succulent and most relevant remarks from the point of view of our time Keynes presents in the last chapter of his book when discussing business cycles and international trade. - Five stars most respectfully.
Keynes, John Maynard (2014-08-28). The General Theory of Employment, Interest, and Money. David Rehak. Kindle Edition.
81. Book afr, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Bets Koen: Mosambiek avontur*****

A true pleasant experience

This was my first Afrikaans book after the excellent introduction to the language Teach yourself Afrikaans by Helena van Schalkwyk. I have been lucky. I had no intention to learn Afrikaans,, but bumped to it while looking for suitable reading at Amazon's. No real need to learn any more languages having read minimum one book in 20 languages already. But why not? Would it be related to the Dutch language, so close that you could understand it on the basis of the Dutch. I also had the notion of Afrikaans as a kind of artkficial creation. Neither aspects were specificaly mentioned in the text book, but are now confirmed in my mind.
With rather moderate pains could i dive into the language thanks to this well-written text and interesting story. Amazon offers almost a thousand books in Afrikaans. I scrolled through the whole list with suspiciojs mind, because I looked for some familiar classic or another real world documentary. Deciding from book covers nothing of that kind was available, only sheer kiosk litterature, no interest for me. Therefore I consider me lucky having found this with the word Mosambiek in the title. Perhaps... And I really was not disappointed. Easy reading, interesting events in a country of which I had no knowledge beforehand. The author versatilely describes the many practical difficulties because of primitive circumstances and extreme climatic conditions, continued heat of 40 Celsius degrees. But at the same time the overwhelmingly friendly local people. The author is wife of a man who was establishing and constructing a churc building. Local housing, food, dressing, tbat is, the basic necessities of life are described in a ssympathetic way. With warm and missing feelings does tbe author leave Mosambic and many times she returns to her memories in her other short stories afterwards. I liked the straightforward text so much that I wanted to find out whether she had written something else suitable for me. She has written several children's books. Being myself 82 I did not decide to buy yet.
Well-deserved four stars are my assessment. Five would be too much considering my meager experience in the Afrikaans language.
82. Book est, summary: ajkNotes

Annela Laaneots: Minu Setomaa*****

Setomaa - Another Leviathan!

I have just finished the famous classic Leviathan by Thomas Hobbes, description and philosophy of a nation that did not exist as described, at Shakespearean days. This Laaneotsa Setomaa is another Leviathan, description and philosopy of a nation that formally does not exist, but in reality exists today, a miniature of a real nation and its territory and life on it. With all respect to the famous classic I must say that Setomaa beats Leviathan as David once beated Goliath. Simply better, thats all. Leviathan was created as a mere brain excercise, Setomaa is strong experience from the first step to the last. Only that it is no real nation, but a tribe of 20 thousand people and even of these only 2 thousands are the concrn of this miniature masterwork of a book. And who is the ingenious writer? No less than the queen of this country. She really is. Ülembsootska is her offcial title, deciding from her status and activity, well corresonds those of a Shakesperian time queen. Here's the map of Setomaa

What I have said is no irony, but concrete truth. I have even visited the place, true, without being conscious of it. With genuine fascination I have now read a versatile, balanced and well-written story of it. Worth of all five stars as assessment.
83. Book ger, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: ger

Friedrich Albert Lange: Geschichte des Materialismus****

Lange, Friedrich Albert. Geschichte des Materialismus

Lange is with one stroke hitting the highest top among my favorite philosophers, not so much as the original thinker like the other three, Kant, Schopenhauer and Balashov, but as my mentor to the whole discipline of philosophy, my main hobby since my retirement 20 years ago at the age of 63, now 83. It is surprising that I have not found him earlier, that is: this masterwork of Geschichte not being seen in the top of the list of philosophy litterature in general.
Reading this book was a great experience not only as a source for learning philosophy as an amateur, but also because of the author's approach, not only to the subject matter of philosophy, but litterally to the reader. Not losing a bit of his professional authority he manages to create an atmosphere of chatting closeness to the reader. So in several contexts along the way.
But there is also an experience of up and down hill in some contexts. This is best exemplified by my note a week later than I wrote those praising lines above. Reading chapter II. Kraft und Stoff, this chapter at about 2/3 of the text concerning the philosophy of atomism and the essence of matter and motion, because of the concepts and treatment of chemistry and physics completely remains outside my understanding and hard crust of ignorance. There were also other similar experiences. At about 3/4 of the text I told about my reading to my Russian friend. He was well aware of the book and told about his own different concept of the world as well as, surprising to me, cited Lenin's and Stalin's views about Lange, from the point of view of the life of society, an aspect to which I had not paid attention at all. Somewhat ashamed I promised to look the text with new eyes, expecting that there would be more of that in the rest of the book, knowing well the close connection of the two top level representatives of materialism of the big L ans S. But to my astonishment not a single mentioning of the bearded hero of Marx or his secretary and ideologist Engels. The simple explanation I found only after completing the reading: the book is written before the time of Marx and Engels!
I still consider this book a great reading experience, even after some dull speed reading contexts. Considering these it seems to me that five stars is somewhat too much, so four stars is my assessment.
84. Book spa, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Sarah Lark: En el país de la nube blanca*****

I would give even six stars

This review is from: En el país de la nube blanca (B DE BOOKS) (Spanish Edition) (Kindle Edition)
This is an exceptionally colourful and well-written story, full with fine logical paths of thought as well as unexpected turns. Several clear-cut personalities, good and bad characters. Realistic description of everyday pioneer life 140 years ago.
The chapters are good portions for reading at a time, although many times it has been impossible to stop, but continue still another chapter.
I am now finishing the book on Samsung android device. The file and page management is impeccable. Only in table of contents there should be mentioned not only the chapter numbers as links, but also the locations, because I return to the table to see how long is the chapter that I am starting to estimate how long it will take to read.
The linked dictionary is very good (also Italian, which I have recently used). I could not even reach my hand to take afore a heavy dictionary when I already have the word explained here.
However I have two suggestions for improvements:

  1. It should be possible not only to save as a highlight a word, but also the explanation that the dictionary gives to it.

  2. Another even more serious lack is that I cannot get my markings as one file for a possible further elaboration or repeated study of text /words as it is the case with My Clippings in my 'gray Kindle'. This is in my opinion a very big drawback. See my page and you will understand why.

85. Book eng, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Vladimir Ilyich Lenin: Capitalism 1916****

First hand acquaintance with Leninism

A real masterpiece of its kind. This is how the world was seen hundred years ago. Concentrated to one sentence: "Monopolies, oligarchy, the striving for domination and not for freedom, the exploitation of an increasing number of small or weak nations by a handful of the richest or most powerful nations— all these have given birth to those distinctive characteristics of imperialism which compel us to define it as parasitic or decaying capitalism."
If not expressly mentioned this was also the view for the future, of the state of our world, hundred years later. Is this the truth now? Do we live the age of imperialism, age of parasitic, decaying capitalism? Fortunately not. These words sound hollow propaganda now. The contrary development seems to have taken place. We have got rid of imperialism in the sense of Lenin's description as a vicious concentration of power with the main aim of oppression and blood sucking of colonies. In stead, we have globalization without one-sided expropriation of the weak. Or do we? At least we do not see free competition as an evident source of monopolization as did Lenin. On the contrary, free competition, as extensive as possible, is seen as the guarantee against monopoly. Highly developed means of communication, instant spreading of information, is in favor of moral responsibility and consciousness on grass-root level. Ruthless concentration of power has become practically impossible.
So, Lenin was wrong. The strongest evidence against him was the fall of the Soviet Empire, built on the fundament of the soft ideological porridge of his ideas.
Right or wrong, four stars for the strong-handed argumentation.
86. Book ita, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Mario Livio: L'equazione impossibile****

The riddle of an impossible equation

By Asko Korpela "AJK"
This review is from: L'equazione impossibile (BUR SAGGI) (Italian Edition) (Kindle Edition)
The name of the author: Mario Livio completely guarantees the readability of the text, whatever it is. I know this from experience having read Golden Ratio by Livio. Golden ratio sounds innocently familiar, a well-known concept of visual perception, perhaps of industrial design, met everywhere in everyday life. But behind it there is a lot of pure mathematics.
This Impossible equation, on the contrary, refers to mathematics already by its name. And surprise, surprise: the contents of the book is more of mathematicians than mathematics. Using 'impossible equation' as the search word in order to find out what this mysterious equation concretely is, you will get exactly one and only one reference, really giving exact answer to this question. It is an algebraic equation of the fifth degree. As a complete layman in mathematics (who can be a complete layman as everyday user?) this answer together with the information that the best professionals have spent thousands of tedious brain breaking hours trying to find why impossible. As it remains a riddle to them, it may gladly stay so also for me. Further confirmation of the seriousness of the mystery is the length of bibliography, about sixty! normal book pages. Guess how long would be the index of persons (undone, perhaps wisely enough).
From the above, you could infer: dull stuff. Surprise, surprise: everything else but dull - as you could expect, if acquainted with Livio's text. Of course, he does not avoid mathematics, not to speak of somehow putting it down. But mathematics is served more in the way of 'wolf under sheepskin', by appearance more than inside structure. Instead some mathematicians, not just by appearance, but by their inside. In fact the contents of the book is the biography of two persons, both died at the age of some twenty years! Who else but a mathematician could enter the universal hall of fame at that age, perhaps only a swimmer or a hockey player.
These two celebrities are Évariste Galois (1811-1832) and Niels Henrik Abel (1802-1829), one French and the other Norwegian. And what have they done to deserve theit names on the book pages, where such names as Pythagoras, Gauss, Newton, Kepler, Einstein and the like are mentioned? About the same as those, at least according to Livio (and the long list of references to their doings). Their speciality is easily mentioned: group theory and symmetry, but its importance not so easily assessed by a general reader.
In essence, the concept of symmetry is much more than a mirror reflection, rather, it can span a continuous spectrum of multi-dimensional spaces. In basic sciences, the understanding of symmetry played a profound role in several important discoveries including: relativity theory (the symmetry of time and space); human DNA structure (double helix); the quasi-crystals and their mathematical counterpart penrose tiles. We argue that reasoning about symmetry can likewise play a crucial part in the advance of artificial/machine intelligence.
Why no voting buttons? We don't let customers vote on their own reviews, so the voting buttons appear only when you look at reviews submitted by others.
87. Book eng, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Mario Livio: The Golden Ratio*****

The Most Astonishing Number by Mario Livio

Indeed this is also a most astonishing book telling the story of a number. In bibliographical terms this book is mathematics, or slightly more narrowly history of mathematics. Nota bene! The number is not the well-known Pi (3,14..), related with circle, but equally well-known, not as a number but as ratio of long and short edge of an ideal four corner surface. Everybody knows and has a conception of what is a Golden Ratio without ever thinking it as a number. At least I bumped to the number reading this book, first time in my over 75 years of life. The magic number is PHI (1,618), the ratio of the long side to short side of any Golden cut surface. What is so special about that innocent-looking number?
Read this book and you will be astonished. As if the whole Universe would be planned on the basis of this magic number: all 'natural' dimensions fron snow-flakes to the form of galaxies, masterpieces of painting, sculpture and music have this Golden ratio as the basic measure of their inner proportions. We seek it instinctively everywhere and are disappointed, if we do not find it. As an example I am extremely irritated of the brute deviation from this ideal of the format of paper journals; in addition to being unpleasant looking, they also are clumsily flabby for holding in hands.
Despite of presenting the innocent looking simple numbeer Phi (with alternative formulas behind it) this book plunges right away to the deepest mysteries of mathematics referring to dozens, hundreds of authorities. And yet, you will have no difficulty reading and understanding the text. High level mathematics is usually thought as pages full of formulas and dissertations of 20 pages, which very few persons understand. This book is not that way, although it goes far beyond mathematics requiring technical knowledge and skills. Just that is the fascination of the book. Embracing structures from flowers to houses and galaxies you get a fantastic feeling of better understanding what you see. Also another very rare feature is included. The host of personalities contributing to this discovery of hidden secrets of our world view are presented on everyday grass root level. Such well-known as Pythagoras, Newton, Gauss, Kepler, Einstein along with many less known but very important geniuses. Believe or not you have the feeling of meeting and chatting with them persoanlly. A real magician this Mario Livio, five stars without any hesitation. Grateful to my friend Viljo, class mate beyond 60 years, who introduced this author to me. Reading already a second Amazon book by Livio, about The Impossible Equation.
Review in English
88. Book por, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Danilo Marcondes: O Surgimento da filosofia na Grécia antica**

Good commercialization of a grain of truth

Or: adollar for a fart of a professional! In this essay Thales is mentioned as the first philosopher. A philosopher is seeking explanations inside the world, natural reasons in stead of mythical. Karl Popper is mentioned as the founder of scientific philosophy.
89. Book eng, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Alfred Marshall: Elements of Economics of Industry*****

A supplement to Marshall's Principles of Ecconomics

These Marshall's works belong to the corner stones of economics. They rise Alfred Marshall to the Tribune and Round Table of Economics to join him only with such giants as Adam Smith and John Maynard Keynes. This work should be obligatory in courses of economics, also as a hundred page version already at the lowest level of study. And as an obligatory exam of admission to the table of negotiations between trade unions and employers.
In spite of the highest professional sophistication the text is extremely easy reading, completely comparable with my recent reading of Milton Friedman's monography on his Chile excursion, Friedman being another pretender to the above mentioned Round Table. It seems to be a feature of distinction that the highest professional level texts are also the easiest reading. Maybe just because of their mature profoundness and perspication, concentration to the essence.
Marshall, publishing since 1890's, is considered as the founder of neoclassical economics. What then are the main features of his contribution? - The introduction of marginalism and equilibrium analysis of the market economy. He is mainly operating in the field of microeconomics and more with static end results of the market processes than their dynamics. Real delicacies are his every day life examples of any high level principles. Different levels of working people's skills and durability of products are considered as well as natural surroundings and conditions. No trace of just dry speculation with abstract concepts.
A highly recommendable reading in spite of its more than a century of age, no question of less than five stars of assesment.
90. Book eng, summary: ajkNotes

Alfred Marshall: Principles of Economics**

Extremely confusing and dull

The property of confusingness is completely due to Kindle. At the same time as the screen has been improved and become almost satisfactory for easy reading and page numbering introduced as an alternative for location markings, this book is split into two parts: one with reasonable page numbering and the other provided with a single page number of 285. What is the sense of this big blunder? Of course no sense.
The other property of dullness is a relative one, could be due to the author or to the reader. In this case I am ready to take it completely on my account. It is only confusing that I have just read another book by the same author about broadly the same subject matter, not finding it at all dull reading, but very entertaining instead! (This dull Principles of Economics and the other entertaining Elements of Economics of Industry). This dull Principles was published in 1890 and the entertaining Elements only two years later in 1892. Has the author been able to improve so completely or has the reader so completely dropped to a low mood. The latter seems more probable although does not feel so at all. There is, however, a hint that some other readers might have felt the same way as the present. Included in this present volume, in its latter equally sized part as the first, there is a comprehensive another treatment of the same subject matters as in the first part. Maybe it is more entertaining?
But at least just now, this reader is too fed up with principles of economics to risk another adventure on the all-embracing next page of 285. Instead giving indignantly the lowest ever number of stars 2* as assessment of this book. ajk
91. Book eng, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

John Stuart Mills: Utilitarianism****

Justice as utility

Or actually vice versa, utility applied properly in the society turns out, boils down to justice. Justice, in its turn, takes a wide variety of disguises, from the lex talionis, as we are taught the name of the old principle: an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth to the various notions of justful taxation. The former has been abandoned in the present Western societies, and the latter continuously debated. Generally accepted is the principle of progressive taxation, which is mild for small earnings and severe for big. But equally it is accepted as justice and seen utilitarian that talent and diligency are remunerated more than lazyness and ineffectiveness.
But could it not be so that all earnings give the same proportion to government for justful redistribution and let the market of supply and demand determine the justful earnings. Or could'nt the taxation be completely separated from personal earnings and paid from revenue of product entering the market? This notion of faceless taxation I have not seen anywhere else, so may consider my own utopian contribution to the idea of justful taxation.
And what is the utility itself? The utilitarian doctrine is, that happiness is desirable, and the only thing desirable, as an end; all other things being only desirable as means to that end. Happiness is not an abstract idea, but a concrete whole; and these are some of its parts. But if this doctrine be true, the principle of utility is proved.

92. Book hun, summary: ajkNotes

Moricz Zsigmond: Életem regénye***

Moricz Zsigmond: Novel of my life

All leaves of a familytree picked one by one. The childhood of the author in a Danube shore country village is particularly well described. Life indoors and outdoors in the apple tree garden. Strong personalities, mother, grandmother, father, uncles and aunts. All this the authos successfully sums up on the last page of the book: "Tízéves koromig több történt velem, mint azóta ötven év alatt. Írhatnám még világ végéig, az életem végéig. Ennél többet nem mondhatok magamról. A többit a regényekben megírtam. Még szeretnék néhány vallomást a színpad zárt formájában egy pillanatban együtt lobogva fel embertestvérekkel." (By the time I was ten, more had happened to me than I have experienced in fifty years. I could write until the end of the world, to the end of my life. I can't say more about myself. I have written the rest in my novels. I still want to make some confessions in the closed form of the stage, fluttering together with fellow human beings for a moment.)
A lot of words, nothing much else. That is: I am disappointed. Maybe 3 stars, however, because of the many words of everyday life learned in Hungarian, the most difficult language I have ever been learning.
93. Book hun, summary: ajkNotes

Móricz Zsigmond: Harmatos Rózsa****

Good book for learning language

This is my 24th ebook and 171th book in Hungarian, the language in which I have read more pages than in any other language, my own Finnish included, for learning of which spend money more than for all others summed up. And still I know some ten languagea better than Hungarian. Hungarian is the most difficult language I have ever learned. Estonian, another relative to Finnish being the easiest of all. I do not understand! Learning Hungarian is a pleasant challenge, one of my favorite spendtimes.
This Moricz Zsigmond book suits well to this purpose of language learning. Now finished I have the usual feeling: learned a lot of words an expressions, but am not quite sure about having understood the main idea of the book. There was a girl by name Rozsa and two others by flower names, also one or two handsome boys, parents, aunts and uncles, lot of laugh and tears, a kind of love and some hate and jealousness, so a love story, but I am not sure. At least the end was not a happy union but a separation, the death of grandmother
In any case speed and easy reading with many word lookups, juzt as it should be, four stars.
94. Book hun, summary: ajkNotes, available: mek

Móricz Zsigmond: Esőleső társaság***

Learning Hungarian on thin ice

Really! That is a suitable metaphora. Reading this obviously pleasant text I felt like on a thin autumn ice: to go or not to go? And this for a very peculiar reason: the text was missing wovels, pehaps one of seven to ten. So that by concentrated reading I almost could follow the intrigue: incidents of country life in Hungary hundred years ago, under Russian troops surveillance. Sunny days in garden work from point of view of a young maiden, lunch table reunion of the very colorful village leadership, searching a lawfully obedient path of life under foreign occupation and other fancy events in strong country side atmosphere and surroundings. So genuinely interesting, perhaps because of the reader having experienced something similar more than half a century ago. Should I interrup and abandon the invalid text or search its valid version or perhaps continue with this as it is, perhaps getting corrected later on. Is the fault perhaps in my reader program FullReader stripping too long lines? I really did attempts to change reader program. No success. Obviously the fault is in the original. I made an attempt to find the book in MEK (Magyar Elektronikus Könyvtar) again. Found several Moricz books, downloaded a couple, but no trace of this particular, perhaps deleted just because found defective. So I decided to continue to the bitter end. Do not remember having ever interrupted a book midway. Now finished. What did I get? A proper taste of Hungarian country side life hundred years ago as already mentioned, desire to continue Moricz, a weak linkage to learning the language, some words and even idioms, not worth introducing to notes because of failing orthography.
Thus not completely vaist of time. Reading worth three stars, however.
95. Book eng, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Haruki Murakami: What I talk about when I talk about running****

Me running together with Murakami

This is a very specal kind of book. I wonder whether anybody having nothing to do with running would be interested in reading this book. On one hand the subject matter of the book calls for personal engagement with running, but on the other, the author is a big master of formulating his ideas. He could make an interesting story out of a block of wood, why then not of his personal experiences of looking around while using the simplest means of transportation in a most effective way.
Murakami really runs his eyes open and observing. Having done that already a quarter of a century as a means to writing books and distributing them in millions of copies in tens of languages all over the world is utmost impressive. Wat a fantastic simplicity in combination! Just running, seeing and writing!
While reading this book I felt myself his co-runner, already for the reason that I started my running only a few yars before Murakami, in 1977 at the age of forty years. But sadly enough, especially looking at it now, in the light of this story, finished my career only seven years later, physically, but not spiritually. Twelve marathons, half an hour faster than Murakami - proud to say. Once runner, always runner, that is the main thing and the motivation to read this book.
The second chapter of the book is a good rough description of my own career. The same steps, same transformation of every day habits in eating, resting, body hurting and enjoying a new way of life. Murakami started his career as writer about parallel to his running. I also wrote books, text boks in economics, but was at that time already finishing my career after tens of thousand books and going over to computer programming, still continuing it today. And differently from Murakami, never have I been able to see any direct connection between my motioning and writing.
Murakami's devotion and stamina are impressive. At several occasions he is telling, how important it is to make running an everyday habit. I found it shocking, when he tells about leaving his smoking. Perhaps, insted of pills, running should be advised as a means of getting rid of smoking! Running and smoking - a completely impossible combination, it really seems to me. My big thing was getting rid of 20 kg overweight. Another big was that I first time found myself a long distance runner after having been a sprinter in my young days, up to 20 years of age.
Starting this running book I was already familiar with Murakami's grass root level writing style from his later book about the lone rider Tsukuru in 'Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage'. Now having finished this running book I only remember, how I was somewhat disappointed with some overly detailed description of certain technicalities after the takeoff of the flight in running and even more interesting in the parallel start of his author's career. There are two more very big causes of disappointment in this otherwise so excellent and under the skin going story. One is his, or the editor's, or the translator's, or the publisher's harring to miles as the measure of distance. Is it only the English translation that requires miles, or is this true also in Japan in general? Another disappointment was that he never gives his exact running times in plain numbers. I would have preferred that way in stead of roughly putting it in words like three hours fortyfive minutes etc.
There is still another very personal disappointment to me. I expected that I would find in this book the solution of the main riddle after the other book mentioned above. How on Earth does Murakami give my country Finland a special treatment in that other book? Perhaps something to do with running? With the Finnish great champion, his exact coeval Lasse Virén, double gold medal winner of long distance running in two olympic games, that is: one man, four gold medals! No answer to this question. Not in the other book, not in this, not even in Wikipedia. So perhaps I must continue reading Murakami. Not an unpleasant undertaking for the future! Do I dare to give only four stars - mainly because of the continuous nuisance of miles in stead of kilometers?
96. Book eng, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Haruki Murakami: Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage*****

A real problem rouser

This review is from: Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage (Kindle Edition)
20150126 Haruki Murakami: Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage
This book roused more problems than it solved. But that is not a bad thing. Maybe I would find some answers by digging deeper in Wiki or other media, but prefer writing my review completely (almost) from my own grounds.
As a Finn the foremost problem is: why and how on Earth Murakami has chosen for my country among 200+ countries such an important and perfectly correctly informed role in his novel? No born Finn could have better described things Murakami says about Finland, the picture is like a perfect photo.
As a matter of fact this is at the end the only big problem aroused by this book. The rest is fantastically superb entertaining. Except, however, the problem at the very end of the book: what finally happened to our Tsukuru? Did he get Sara or did he not? He really would have deserved.
I am sure that everybody who has read this book will be glad to subscribe my word 'fantastically' as completely unexaggerated. At the beginning of every chapter you could safely expect something fantastic to happen having, however, no way or hint to guess what it would be.
The first and foremost of course is the main explosion of the so beautiful friendship of these young people. Although formally versatilely solved and explained as the main intrigue of the book, it still remains a not completely solved problem and nags one's brain long after having finished the book.
Luckily I hit some relief in choosing another Murakami. Maybe I should follow the example of an episode in that other book, where Murakami explains his background. The other book is 'What I Talk About When I Talk About Running'. There he meets on his daily jogging route a woman, who tells that during the past twenty years she has read all what Murakami has written. By following her example both entertainment and surprising problems would be guaranteed, I expect.
All five stars, how ever critically you would relate to this novel. Not the least as a Finn.
97. Book eng, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Raymond Nelson: China History of China - History of an Empire*****

Much information about China

This Nelson-China together with the recent Vadell-China is just the right kind of source for current information about the old and new emerging world power. The book begins the 5000-year long history of China with a cavalcade of some thirty dynasties ruling with changing success the world's largest country, measured by the size of the population of the present 1400 million inhabitants. The territory is versatilely described from the point of geography, fertility of the soil, variability of climate ruled by the monsoons influencing decisively the flora and fauna and the minds of the country. This period of systematic leaps to the present includes the already long known history of the Great Wall, the only man-made construction seen from the surface of the Moon, as proven by the moon-visiting astronauts. Other conspicuous wonders of China are the just quite recently discovered Terracotta Army and the all-over loved Giant Pandas.
The history after dynasties, that is the period of the recent century, is characterized by astonishing turns in social, economic, and political life leading from the status of background to the tremendous forefront. True, by the brute force of a giant, but still more true by talented entrepreneurship of a great nation or better combination of several ones and diligent masses.
My impression as a general reader is that a new Silk Road is being built more by peaceful means than a powerful threat by a big giant. All five stars for this greatly balanced and easily digested source of information.
98. Book eng, summary: ajkNotes

Ott Ojamets: First method languages*****

Stunningly ingenious language guide

At the beginning author Ott Ojamets openly and unbounded boasts and praises his language learning method to the heights of heaven. And thus raises the suspicions of the reader - and awakens the reader's attention, perhaps a deliberate trick, well in harmony with what follows, his mehod. Not the least exaggeration!
And what is the method? A tailor made suit for the user, sewn from homemade raw materials! The most important ingredient: the eager of the student. To hell with textbooks and grammars! Imitation, a gratis tool instead of expensive books and other devices. But alarm! Not a lazy man's road. On the contrary! Nuclear stuff right from the beginning, but in completely chewable piecemeal form, compact bits, but again and again, repeating until mastery.
Quite soon I had to give up: too stony way for me. But at the same time I noticed that my own way has had many elements of the present master's method. To hell with grammar, words and expressions sucked from their natural surroundings. Writing word on paper until learned. I have done it unconsciously, the author Ott consciously, collected the elements to a method, revolutionary simple but convincing. Promising effective results if followed, even personally adapted. What would I have learned, if consciously followed Master Ott's method. I have had the most important potential, the unextinguished eager. To my soon 84 year age I have read minimum one book in 21 languages, feel myself a kind of Jack of all trades, master of none. At school always a good and eager student of languages, in academic studies more credit points in languages than in prodessional disciplines, always having six languages included in my study program. Now watching and listening several languages in the world TV. Some languages having learned easily without tutoring, but last 25 years reading more pages in Hungarian than in any other language, Finnish included, and, however, not being able to grasp the ideas in some Hungarian tv-programs. Oh, these languages and language learning, an unending road to heaven!
Ott Ojamets with his ingenious method and free super compact book deserves full five stars, of course.
99. Book por, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Oliveira Martins: Historia de Portugal*****

Fascinating history book

This review is from: Historia de Portugal: Tomo I (Portuguese Edition) (Kindle Edition)
This book is a very colorful story of Portugal becoming what it was about the time of the first voyages around the world. This not just a general description what happened but a chain of events on personal level, storms and adventures from the point of view of the crew. Meeting with indigenous people, founding commercial enterprises, struggle for power in them. I understand that this is just the first part of a complete series. So I eagerly await the next part. This book is peculiar also in another respect: the handling of the file is perfectly logical. You get the information, where you are, how far is the next suitable spot to stop. Only one thing is missing: the possibility to download your own dated markings: bookmarks, highlight, notes for further elaboration and learning. Please give the reader that possibility, because the file in question must exist as you can any time look at it. I have built it, I own it, Kindle is in a way confiscating my property by not giving me the access to my file.
100. Book spa, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: spa

Teresa Ortiz-Tagle: Dos mujeres de Al-Andalus***

A Muhamedan Matriarch?

I chose this book to get some clarification to the question: What is the real status of women in musulman society?
Did I get what I asked? Partially and indirectly: yes. Already a longer time I have had in mind the question: Aren't there at least exceptionally cases of families where the wife is the head and commander like here, perhaps even in most cases although the division of commanding power is not at all important as such. Perhaps not in islamic families either. But what we get to know about the status of women in arab countries seems very strange to us.
In this book there is a description of two strong women, one operating with love and the other acting with the power of hate. Both get things done, but the conclusion is that love is the better motivation and engine of life. No direct contraposition man versus woman is posed. So, no direct answer to my question is found.
Otherwise the text is clear and well-formulated, but full of facts and details unfamiliar to me. History somewhat familiar, but the host of religious and administrative concepts unfamiliar. No logical and unifed pictures, structures gets composed. Therefore I cannot give higher valuation than three stars and promise of sometime read still another book on this topic of woman in islamic society.
101. Book rus, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Борис Пастернак: Доктор Живаго*****

A confusing masterpiece

That is my first and last impression of this book. Precisely reading it, first and last lines, as well as in the middle of it. Why so? Very concretely. The title is Doctor Zhivago. What is more reasonable than looking for 'Doctor Zhivago' mentioned in the text. But no way! Already in the first lines there is an abundancy of Zhivago. "Была мануфактура Живаго, банк Живаго, дома Живаго, способ завязывания и закалывания галстука булавкою Живаго, даже какой-то сладкий пирог круглой формы, вроде ромовой бабы, под названием Живаго, и одно время в Москве можно было крикнуть извозчику «к Живаго!»". But that is it then. No mention of doctor untill once on the (calculated) page 113 (18%) of the book and second time as late as on page 288, 46 % of the book of 632 pages. The reader cannot indeed be blamed for missing the acqaintance of the title person of the book! True, there is a boy called Yuri quite at tne beginning, perhaps then later also, but no mention that this perhaps would be just the Doctor Yuri Andreevich Zhivago. I do not forgive the author this lure of an innocent reader.

Why then confusion also at the end of the book? No word of disappointment by the performance of the author. On the contrary. He has managed masterly to describe his subject, the life of Doctor Zhivago. But the whole life of the doctor seems to me a complete confusion. But not because he would be in confusion himself, but because of the world, in the midst os which he lives. The revolution, the effective confused state of war within his country, his everyday life. Concrete need to escape from familiar surroundings in fear of life. Being separated from family, from friends, obeying decretes and will of this or that political fraction of the nation. I am virtually fed up with this. Perhaps having had a too easy life in ordered social surroundings. Considering this my doom of three stars may seem too harsh, but it well reflects my disappointment. I had seen the film of Doctor Zhivago more than 50 years ago and then shared a world wide sympathetic reception of it. Did not remember but the romantic love story and tune of Lara and Zhivago. They are included in the book, but overwhelmed by a big revolutionary confusion. Three stars remain my harsh verdict.

102. Book eng, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Perry Kevin: Philosophy*****

Absolute top of a text book

A new fantastic formulation of ebook, never seen before. I immediately get the desire to formulate my own main text book Suomi markalla mitaten in this way. With rich coloured illustrations it is most suitable for this kind of formulation. A third step after paper text book and ordinary e-textbook. A definite step forward. A completely new form of study guide reached by ingenious and complete internal linking of the text. The result is extremely rich contents by concise text. A combination of text book, encyclopedy, tag collection for exam reading, what else? Excellent litterary wording without one and only futile word.
I got at first glance the incentive to formulate my main textbook in this way alhough abandoned already 20 years ago, but containing all necessary elements to be combined with my pioneering lectures completely computerized just before introduction of Power Point. Fingers itching to apply this formsulation to two other texts, the translation of which from Russian to English and Finnish is my hobby and task at the moment.
One of the best books I have ever read deserves all five stars, of course, completed with an extra plus.
103. Book por, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: por

Fernando Pessoa: Escritos sobre Filosofia****

Handbook of Practical Philosophy

At first my attitude towards this text was suspicious. Isn't it too fragmentary. I feel need to scroll the text from beginning. Quite right: fragmentary in double sense. A complete cavalcade of short notes of auctorities on various concepts of philosophy and metaphysics. And then tens of times the word fragments as heading of short notes, this time Pessoa's own fragmentary thoughts. I am getting used to this fragmentary presentation. Not too alien to my own knowledge of philosophy.
Also soon remembering another book with somewhat similar approach to things: Sophology or Practical Philosophy by my good friend Lev Balashov. That book, however, not fragmentary but tightly systematic, although with mainly the same contents, big ideas of philosophy presented in a well-palatable form for an amateur in philosophy, that is: just for me.
So my attitude turned more and more to big pleasure towards the end of the text until bumps! What happened? My book got stuck, so did my notes. Poison, virus in the air? Sooner in my new computer? Or is the version of my book defective? pI could read to the end, but headings and page numbers did not correspond to what I had in my table of contents. I considered erasing the book and buying a new version, even visited Amazon site. But had a cool welcome: you have this book already, no need buying another. What to do next? I cannot even add my usual review at the end of my notes. What if I open the book and the notes in my desktop computer? Heureka! That was the solution! The mere opening and resaving solved the whole problem. Yes, returning back to my new fantastic Surface computer and reopening the files succeeded and I could finish my Pessoa.
Five stars would not be too much after such experiences, but four seems still more appropriate for the fragmentary feeling.

104. Book por, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Fernando Pessoa: Escritos sobre Política e Sociedade*****

Wouldbe wisdom with concepts of hundred years ago

The somewhat ironic heading I wrote already at an early stage of reading. Proceeding further my sceptical attitude changed completely. Some years ago I deliberately adopted the political standpoint of grass root global citizen and sharp critical relationship to national states. After that I have felt myself an alone wolf. But now I see that at least hundred years ago there has been another sceptic of nationalism, if not expressly so declared, so at least critically treating this dangerous idea.
Fernando Pessoa presents acute definitions and classifications of national level politics one after other. Democracy, aristocracy, revolution, evolution, active and passive participation, new and old ideas are his source of treating politics of various powers and cultures. His attitude is not fierce pro and contra, but a keen observation. Partly in form of dialogue between fictive persons. Or how do I know: perhaps not fictive but real. I did not notice remark about that. Any case, pleasant and easy reading. With the effect of immediately after finishing I ordered another book by Pessoa, his thoughts about my favorite subjec of philosophy.
Self-evident that the initially assumed four stars turned to five.
105. Book fin, summary: ajkNotes

Pekka Pihlanto: Parkinkokous istuu Alastalon salissa*****

An excellent summary of this excellent book

In almost daily contact with the author I knew what to expect. This is just as great summary as is the book Alastalon salissa of Kilpi, the second best written in Finland and in Finnish, immediately following after Aleksis Kivi's Seven Brothers. I have read Alastalon salissa in Finnish and in Swedish. The latter in a reading circle. Stayed specifically in mind the humble words of the translator Thomas Warburton at the preface of the book. There really is cause for modesty: absolutely brilliant translation, the same quality from start to finish. I say what I experienced, even if being no expert in the local dialect nor in the Swedish language. The litterary deliciousness is something else than the finesses that only experts can find and understand. It is as well the general idea of the text, as in details that pop up when reading, with one word, in the author's skills. And that skill is possessed by these original authors as these mentioned mediators Warburton and Pihlanto. Even if reading original works in many languages, I do not belittle translations. I have in mind a couple of poor and a pair of brilliant translations. This Warburton's is one of the great, the other is the Finnish translation of the Book of Joyce's Ulysses by Pentti Saarikoski, better than the original. That is my definite opinion. The worst I have read, I no longer remember by whom, the translation of Sienkiewics' book Chlopy, Peasants. Almost as messy, or not so messy, but in an unforgivable hurry is done the French translation of Kivi's Seven Brothers by Jean Louis Perret. The latter is anybody able to see even without knowing French at this link: the best pieces being left without translation. SevenBrothers-fin-fra
The piece of delicacy by Pihlanto well deserves the full five stars.
106. Book ita, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Thomas Piketty: Il capitale nel XXI secolo*****

A cornerstone of applied economics

Capital in the twenty-first century by Thomas Piketty is a truly tremendous book. The performance of Piketty can only be compared with no less that of Adam Smith as the founder of the economics discipline and the study of market economy and J M Keynes as the initiator of genuine macroeconomic considerations in the formulation of government policies.

Now comes Piketty from dismal nowhere to full light with his treatment of inequality in the distribution of global capital and income. His study is based on worldwide data and two centuries of development with complete awareness of the adequacy and limitations of the available data. He has divided the world into half a dozen of regions with different characteristics of their stages of economic development. Piketty's great merit is that he does not hesitate in presenting ideas for worldwide management of this inequality of capital return and growth of productivity. All for the benefit of worldwide economic stability. Admirable is his clarity and perspicacy of presentation of the enormous amount of data he is using.

Piketty if anybody for his pioneering contribution in this most important analysis and management of basic economic processes also deserves the most appreciated premiums in the field.

As a representant of the professional education I consider it of the highest practical necessity that an abbreviated to one third or one quarter edition of this volume be prepared for educational purposes on the very first level, preferably by Piketty himself. The subject matter of this study is of primary urgency for future economists but this book is quite too wide to be used as a normal text book for exams.

Also the very basic concepts of this study should be found in Wikipedia to be easily and constantly referenced for reading the text. At the moment that is astonishingly not the case. Awaiting that, copying from the book to own extended clipboard is a practical piece of advice.

No amount of stars is too big for this completely exceptional book, both for its merits in readability and importance of the subject treated, five stars seems too little.

107. Book por, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Manuel Pinheiro Chagas: Historia alegre de Portugal*****

New Experience

I no longer remember where I got this book. Was it so that, in the online store, I decided to take a look at a previously unknown reader, or that I ran somewhere into the book. I think that I was specifically looking for Portuguese-language e-books, which Amazon also offers. Or was I looking specifically for history. This history Alegre, Merry history, the name of which I liked immediately after I saw it. I'm not disappointed. Here are a couple of special features that make it just History Alegre.

The first is the lengthy summary of a few lines at the beginning of each chapter. I think that the same should then be as subtitles in the text. Maybe somehow in the gray margin or the like, because there are quite a lot of them, which I do not complain but praise, on the contrary. Headings I like all over.

Another great feature is the pleasant atmosphere that is conjured up in such a way that the text is presented by a narrator and there is a small group of listeners, who occasionally ask questions and comment the story. The narrator is like a well-informed friend and gentleman, and the listeners are like family members and friends who gather together at separately agreed date to hear and discuss the history of Portugal. This is considered better time than sitting in front of a glass in the tavern. To this it is referred in pleasant manner in the last narrative passage of the book.

E aqui, Meus amigos, acabo a minha tarefa; o que eu desejo, rapazes, é que Voces que não os achem massou No muito pobre do João da Agualva, e que melhor empregaram entendam que o seu tempo of a ouvir as minhas historias, do que a beber decilitros na tavern Funileiro do.

Five stars. If I see someone else's Merry history, I will download and read. Happy surprise of the reading program: without my interfering I have found Pompeev's History of entrepreneurship in various versions. What might be the criterion, according to which?

108. Book spa, summary: ajkNotes

Edgar Allan Poe: Novelas Completas***

Edgar Allan Poe: Novelas Completas

EAP is not my genre. Fiction is too rampant to say reckless. I don't like it. Not even a bad joke went to Muerte roja, especially now during the corona. If I had read further than the first screen before searching for non-existent historical roots, I might have realized that it was pointless to search. My genre is the kind of fiction that specifically has historical roots (Follett, Gorge). Next short story spouse's death (as soon as the front, then I do in my own life I witnessed or longer) only confirmed my opinion AEP genre of unfamiliarity.
3* is an appropriate estimate based on the past.
109. Book hun, summary: ajkNotes

Edgar Allan Poe: Válogatott művei***

Book served its purpose

Reading Hungarian books, and sometimes also books in some other foreign language, I have noticed that I cannot follow the overall idea of the book, but still feel it useful to continue reading. So especially in this case. Actually, this book has not got any general line, because it is a collection of chosen works as its title says. Short stories, in somd cases, very short stories about some curious events. Paying notice to the long list of words searched in the Hungarian dictionary is a clear proof about the usefulness of the book as a means of learning the language.
I do not stop asking what makes just the Hungarian language so hard to learn. Hungarian is a relative language to my own Finnish. The relativity is generally known and evident on every page of any Hungarian book or text, but why so difficult? Three strong common feaures: some couple lf hundred words, primitive words of general existence and everyday life. The general structure of grammar, word suffixes, often two or three in stead of using prepositions as most other languages do. Intonation, such an invisible thing having something so common that I really have been asked abroad whether I am Hungarian of Finn. I cannot find any other reason for the difficulty than the small quantitative degree of these similarities, however distinct they even are. Because exactly the same similarities are apparent in the neighboring Estonian, which I consider the easiest of foreign languages, never having needed the usual methos of learning it. Just reading and speaking.
But there is a wolf hole also in Estonian. Only extremely rare if any Finnish or Estonian people can learn each other's language so well that a native speaker could not from the first word recognize the other relative. This does not disturb the communication between a Finn and an Estonian, but completely excludes it between a Finn or an Estonian and a Hungarian. I only ask, do the Hungarians feel the same way in learning Finnish or Estonian? Obviously yes. Never discussed the matter with a Hungarian, or with a Finn fot that matter, because so few Finns learn Hungarian and probably even fewer Hungarians learn Finnish.
Would there be similar difficulties between far relatives in other language groups? Sometimes I have learned that Italians and Spanish are the worst stjdents of each other's langjages. Is it really true? Why not, in the same way as in the case of Finns and Estonians? What a fascinating hobby of learning languages! Lifelong in my case as certainly in all others.
Only three out of five stars just because of something of the usual reading experience were missing in this case. I did not even try the long list of poems at the end, not having any sense for poetry in general.
110. Book ita, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Marco Polo: Il Milione***

Origin of all travel stories

A very fascinating book. Has retained its fascination for centuries. Mother or better: father of all travel stories. Very elementary, even in the sense of very annoying at the same time as extremely atractive, full of explosively wild colors. By annoying I refer to the 209 numbered sections, of whic a great deal follows the formula:
"141 Di Nangi. [Nan]gi è una provincia molto grande e ricca. La gente è idola; la moneta è di carte, e sono al Grande Kane. E' vivono di mercatantia e d'arti. Ànno seta assai, uccellagioni e cacciagioni e ogne cosa da vivere; e ànno leoni asai. Di qui ci partiamo, e conteròvi de le 3 nobili città de Sagianfu, però che troppo sono di grande affare."
That is: Veni, vidi, sorti: conteróvi del prossimo. But just as the trip took 20 years and0the last impressions are the strongest, so do they reflect in the story. At the beginning the statements about the idolatry or worshipping of Malometo or a colorful variety of names of Muhammad and strange habits of marriage become tiresome. In stead there is attraction and at the same time doubtfulness of large numbers in speed of travel distances in time and space as well as population. As acumen in this respect be mentioned: "E sí vi dico che negli anni Domini 1285, secondo ch'io Marco Polo vidi, quel re avea 326 figliuoli, tra maschi e femine, ché ben n'a(vea) 150 da arme." and the heading of sesecri 89 "De' 12.000 baroni che vegnono a la festa, come sono vestiti dal Grande Kane." - atractive but incredible - compulsorily puts the imagination to foxtrott, so to say, as well as the formulation of the heading 37: "Come si cavalca per lo diserto". Marco Polo is a real master of convincing the reader of the vastness of deserts and extreme dimensions of habits. Hords of serious scientists have disputed of the mere divine existence of this expedition. But so many details are mentioned that they could not have collected by listening other travelers or invented at campfire sessions. Doubt arise such peculiarities as no mention of chopsticks or tea drinking if I remember corfectly.
Quite special note as a language enthusiast deserves the original Italian language. It seems as no word would have its present appearance, but also not unrecognizably disguisesd that you could not follow the story. Shakespearean English seems worse for me, but Cervantean Spanish easier. Because of strange old spelling I did not dare to go to dictionaries as often as with moder spelling. So the impression of my knowledge of the language along the measure of how many word lookups per 100 pages is just the opposite of true. Does not diminish the attraction o f the story although does not allow me give more than 3 or 4 stars. Perhaps only 3, because of some disappointment on high expectations.
111. Book rus, summary: ajkNotes

Помпеев Юрий: Февральский вихрь*****

How to deal with the revolution?

I feel myself, in any case, I think myself, as a citizen of the global village, thanks to the developed communicative equipment. At the time described in this book this had not happened yet. The sphere of life of an individual person was denser then. In the world, even within one country, there were many different spheres of human life. So it will only be more difficult to treat different conditions of life and not only the inherent, but also their development. How do I relate to the events of life a hundred years ago? Choose the side of an evolution or of a revolution.

In good living conditions without hunger and free from repression it is easy to master the side of evolution. All my 80-year-old life I lived in such conditions. So did my parents and grandparents. Free farming was the mode of life. In Finland, as part of Sweden, there was no time for serfdom. So during the pre-industrial economy, only natural conditions determined the conditions of life. And against nature no revolution helped, just only an evolution.

And then came the conditions with the development of industrialism and these conditions were fruitful for the rise of the revolution, and also reached the dimensions of an open conflict in 1918. Lost were even human lives, but reconciliation happened according to the terms of the decreed society in the spirit of evolution and reached this peaceful development, with the present level of the world-recognized name of the 'Northern European Welfare State'. But so happy was not the development of Russia, although the natural conditions are profitable. The ancient conditions are already suitable for the emergence of the spirit of the revolution, which also happened.

For me, this is something so terrible that I was afraid to start reading a book about it, armed fronts with gunfire between groups of citizens against another. What's worse than that? This was, but not only that and not even half of nation against the other, although there was a complete demise of power. The fourhundred-year dynasty was renounced, even by its own words, in seemingly organized conditions. And to my surprise the author of this book succeeded to present the entire procedure as a civilized dialogue between and inside the main three parties: the dynasty, the state organs and the revolutionaries. For me it was a huge unexpected surprise.

Although on the other hand, knowing the author and his highly humanized soul structure, something special was to be expected, not only a description of a brutal collision of physical forces. And not only the dialogue , but also action, albeit hasty, but still rational and appropriate. A good example of this is the management of trains and their movement with the imperial family and statesmen. This in the book was written in a masterly way and I had to start reading about it just when I had written about the slow communication compared to the present time. We have our own digiphone, though, but even then they used the telephone, although sometimes it was not working. And the train moves only slightly faster today than a hundred years ago. Noticing this, I was struck by a smile amidst a busy reading. It was a whirlwind. Really appropriately chosen word and title of the book.

But the cover of the book was closed in the critical moment of the revolution: the arrival of her father Lenin in Russia and just before the case that gives the harshest taste to the entire cause of revolution: in my opinion a completely unnecessary murder of already defenseless and from our point of view of weakly grounded causes. It is not surprising that the sensual and deeply religious people of Russia built a temple in memory of a touching murder on the site and that they annually memorialize the occasion.
What kind of reason existed to the killing of the family of Romanovs, as Nicholas had already renounced power? This I continue to ask also on reading this book.

112. Book rus, summary: ajkNotes

Помпеев Юрий: Эти великие полгода*****

These great six months

20171204 Till now I was deeply disappointed with this text, disappointment almost drawn to the author. And at the same time to myself: how am I laughing and not ashamed about such an dear friend and a hundred times shown my skill and trust? Now I understand: firstly my weak knowledge of the subject and of course my stubborn position against the revolution and for the evolution. But also from the author's side there are reasons for my disappointment: his delay in the rich mass of facts and data, too many for me, a dry dessert without borders. But today the ray of the sun: dialogue, and what dialogue? Endlessness and that. But it is characteristic of the author: it is balanced, comprehensive, non-partisan or better all-apart, because all ten people representing all kinds of views and nuances of opinions make it extremely difficult to decide their eyesight in complex matters. Until now, I will stand up for evolutions and against the revolution! Stubbornly I continue reading ... Zdesb everywhere: down, down, and my slogan: Hooray, step forward!
20171205 Again interesting dialogues strongly help me understand what I'm talking about. Only stronger I am sure that the revolution is not the right medium for social construction. The proletariat needs all power. Capitalism and the bourgeoisie as enemies of society are considered. Do they need to be destroyed or changed? I think differently: they are ours (I myself consider them to be none of them, but a citizen of the global village) servants who know how to do things for us, which we need, but which we do not know how to produce, like our homes, factories, institutions, all kinds of services . There will be awards more by us, but by specialists and deserve above us. The high taxes will pay the most part of our well-being. Can not we sit twice more than we do, dress three times more dearly to us, have ten times more expensive dwellers, maybe-ten per cent personally to spend from their incomes. What do the rest of the nineties? In addition to crying 50 percent of taxes to support the society order our services, they increase our incomes, so that we better live better. Experts and organizers deserve our gratitude and respect rather than anger and jealousy.
20171206 I can not adequately praise the author for his ingenious invention and determination to use the dialogue when clarifying complex cases. X is a good example in the fifth chapter of the Kronstadt question. Cases of expression from personal mouths will be clearly formulated and defined, the reader will understand. Thank you, UP!
20171206 More and more I hate revolutions, not so much its practical existence as its ideology: it underscores us between dobras and zleh, rams and wolves, friends and enemies! That such a social ideology. Constantly prophesies the division of society instead of unity and friendship. I am absolutely not behind such a philosophy!
20171209 A friend from St. Petersburg has written 1,000 pages of trilogy plus the revolution in Romanovie's history. It is here I have already met several weeks, yet just under 300 pages remaining. There is no point in reading. Blood flows and ends drop. Fortunately, it is the author who invented most of the dialog, in which things are discussed personally on a personal level. Significantly facilitates and streamlines reading. It is also revealed that Father Lenin was a champion who, unexpectedly, headed for the invisible side of the beach. The boat was back on the return. At the top of the question is the question: Was the revolution necessary or whether it would have been possible for Russia to move without abandoning the constitutional monarchy? This is also my delight in the last question of the BBC three-part video almost 3 hours. There is no Pompe privatized to take this position. Interestingly, I look forward to what the last word in the book is.
20171210 We must bury the illusion of a peaceful possibility of transferring power to the Soviets, "Vladimir Ilyich answered. - The authorities do not pass: they take it with a weapon in their hands.

113. Book rus, summary: ajkNotes

Помпеев Юрий: Октябрь семинадцатого*****


20171213 I would like to have a list of people at the beginning of the book as it is at the Theater plays, as well as a structural shema about the relations and division of power between the various bodies and within them. Significantly would help in reading.
Strongly criticizing the absence of headings and the use of naked numbers at any degree of headings.
A boring text clarifying the relationship between organizations and institutions.
20171215 Relieving the reading the latest YP letters pointing out to the experience of our generation. Our experience is very different from the one-hundred-year-old experience. We have experience and knowledge of what democracy is, at that time there was no such experience. The attitude towards the revolution is therefore different.
20171218 Storming. The details of the revolution are a boring reading. But the book contains also my recipe:
Martov, on behalf of his faction, declared: "We do not oppose the transfer of power to the hands of democracy, but we protest against the Bolshevik methods of revolution!" "What do you propose?" The congress rustled. "We propose to suspend the struggle and start negotiations," Martov proposed the same resolution that the Pre-parliament adopted in the morning.
20171221 I'm forced to believe that the country can be conquered with guns and force, bloodshed, but hearts cannot. Constant peace, peace in the whole world is only gained by hearts. Acquaintance, mind, brain, but no fist force, nor machine guns are the means of conquering hearts.
20171222 Everywhere in this text time is expressed in minutes - what is the explanation for this accuracy?
20171223 One hundred years ago, and from the point of view of a utopian citizen of the global village, it is easy to criticize revolution and present for it two alternative ways to build a new society: utopian and experienced. Utopian, in a masterful way, is described by the present author Pompeev in his monograph "History and Philosophy of Russian Enterpreneurship", the path is shown by Robert Owen in America and in Great Britain. There is also a longer reaching practical pathway, the welfare society according to the Scandinavian tradition, including Finland. The main success of this way depends, in my opinion, on the fact that we never had the experience of serfdom. In these countries the peasant was independent. Only a minimally thin layer of torpparilaitos, something like a system of small farms having an obligation of working two days a week on the main farm as a payment for leasing land.
20171224 Balashov: Notes on Lenin
20171226 Big surprise on the last few pages of all 1000: telling how Kollontai, Lenin, Krupskaya rest on the sanatorium Halila in Finland. In this I have a personal connection, true a thin one, with the Russian revolution: My aunt Elsa, from the 1930s, worked in the same sanatorium as a sister of mercy!
114. Book rus, summary: ajkNotes

Помпеев Ю.А.: Гулкое эхо России*****

Here is what I wrote as those seen reading the essay "Tsarskoye Selo":

"Really brilliant text. Although on the level of high culture, yet understandable to any reader. Reading this you feel as being on higher than at ground level, although feet on solid ground but you slightly higher as if somewhat grown, brought up, as indeed you are. And your vocabulary increases tremendously. With grand delight, I continue., "

And the strong grip of the author continues through all the topics of this text.

1. It was interesting to read about the history of Petersburg in the first sketch. In large contours, of course, known already in advance. But here, with reliable repetition of the many new spices. I happen to have very special connection with this city. Almost from the beginning, I even expected, even if the author is not aware of it, that he still mentions it, as do all tourist guides at Isakeevsky Cathedral. Building stones of the cathedral are brought from my home village Hämeenkylä, which, however, is not mentioned, but the county Virolahti, from which two villages have sent stones by Barges to Petersburg, very beautiful red granite. I did not mention this detail to the author, although though reading the text I had a certain sense of closeness and acquaintance with the surroundings.

2. Also with sketch 2 of Peterhof I felt complete familiarity, although only once having been there. More correct: there is a detailed story about this trip in 2004 with pictures. And still remember refreshed by this essay, glittering gold and wealth of statues. I thought that we had all seen, but this text contained a lot more.

3. Essay 3. Peterhof yes, but was there Tsarskoye Selo, too? Easy to check because my travel stories comprise all my meetings with Leningrad area. Yes, really everything, all the important details to Catherine Palace and amber room with pictures and summaries of stories with the same excursion with the retired employees of my wife's employer, the Radio Finland, with whom I traveled about ten times. They even named me an honorary member because of these travel stories!

4. Then follow three essays on important historical figures. About Alexander II, the favorite czar of Finns about whom I just saw a film richly romanticized in his relations with Finland. In principle, all the Russian tsars visited Finland with their yachts in summer and just my home county, the previously mentioned parish of Virolahti. Even first time in Finland, they played tennis in our region. Playground in my opinion still exists as historical monument.

5. About Mendeleev with his system I remember mentioned already in the school, even the photo of the magnificent Russian look immediately remained in the memory. And familiar is, of course, the author of this text, from the "History and philosophy of the entrepreneurship in Russia" the same author, to whom I have the honor to be considered as personal friend. By the way, when meeting him here, I forgot mentioning of the wrong translation of the book title, first unconscious and then deliberate. In Russian 'class of entrepreneurs' rather than 'entrepreneurship'. I apologize most humbly, and of course if wanted, change it. In my opinion, I dare say, this my version is even better, is closer to the man, so to speak.

6. Third party sketches Zhukovsky is totally unfamiliar, even now I do not remember the details of it without repeated reference in their comments or most the author's text.

7. Then the Urals. What a fabulous pioneering history of the Russian people! and man in general, of all humanity. I searched in the text the term of the Urals as the backbone of Russia but did not find. Perhaps it is not an appropriate way of language in Russian as it is in Finnish. But something like that it is, a treasure shrine of Russian economy. Although that also is the entire Siberia, with its vast expanses. On this occasion, I do not understand the duration of all the wars of Russia. No one can challenge this richdom, source of wealth, deep in the heart of the country and far away from all the borders. Is it not always the question about material wealth in all wars? Nobody can win wars, but only lose both financially and especially spiritually and morally not to speak humanely. But the Urals has been, is, and will be the core of Russian material Wealth.

8. Then on Russian Art. For me the essay about Shaliapin is almost more a testimony of the author's skill than that of Shaliapin. Why is that? Just because of the author can only use superlatives in any context. How to write an article using only superlatives? With honor and dignity and with confidence the author clears the task, especially as the end a of this story is so tragic and destroys all superlatives. Really sad impression will remain.

9. I am not a man of music, as all my generation in my family, as my father and some other relatives. At school, the worst of all school grades in music. Still 24/7 I listen an internet radio station by name Ottho's Bach. The taste I have is so limited that, as I express: only JSB and ten of his best pals can sustain. Tchaikovsky belongs to that group, of course. From the Finnish Sibelius only, but he is strong.

10. Essay 10 Christening of Russia is interesting, too. And I am familiar with its main features by recent reading of the History of the state of Russia by Karamzin. I am amazed of the power of religion even after 70 years of atheist regime in Russia. I myself have seen amazingly beautiful churches and Monasteries mentioned in this essay, even the very first of them, Pecherskoe in Kyiv and another also called Caves, near the Estonian border. Self I am weak in faith, but very interested in this area of human life, too.

11. The eleventh essay is the most familiar to me of all, because I have translated it, and along with it done one of the most interesting trips, just called Golden Ring as the essay. Guides were lovely, but I remember also as a thought emerging from this text: how wonderful it would be under the leadership of the author, Pompeev, the whole range of the trip.

12. The last essay, an article of Hypertext by Alexander Rakov. What can I say about that? It seriously is a text of which I did not understand anything, nothing sincerely, although I am daily producing literally dozens of hypertexts as in this review, too. Now I remember a wisdom of the work of Ludwig Wittgenstein, the most renowned philosopher of the last century: “Whereof one cannot speak, thereof one must be silent.” ― It is at the end of his main work Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus.

The general approach of the author is patriotic, but luckily not overdriven, because we are living in a globalized world, where lowering borders is more appropriate than raising them. In my opinion the national state is the most hideous invention of Devil to gather people killing each other with automatic fire weapons. Medicine against this is international trade, tourism, sports, internet, learning language and culture of neighbors, much better guarantee of security than heaping iron on the borders.
115. Book rus, summary: ajkNotes

Помпеев Ю.А.: Очерки по истории европейской научной мысли*****

Essays on the History of European scientific thinking

Finally I have got what I have aimed at: one of the finest books I know to easily readable electronic html guise. The present form is one of several alternatives and not even the most popular ones, however one by which the text is completely manageable and available better than in the form of any paper book. Text size and appearance of the text, moving back and forth, availability of inside and outside references, use of dictionary, making notes, easy access and return to the text. In all of these aspects ebook is preferable to the right honourable 500 year old form of paper book as is the automobile preferable to the romantic horse cart however luxuriously built it might be. Only a reader who has never tasted an ebook can seriously maintain the opposite. I have successfully published 100 thousand paper books in 1967-1995 (AJK-Oblozhki) and still am publishing 30 as samizdat available on the Amazon book store AmaBks. I have read my last paper book several years ago an could in no way be persuaded to read any more. Simply for the several practical reasons above mentioned. But still the main reason for me to turn this and other books into ebooks is not the practical result, but the work of getting it, the computer programming, my daily hobby for over 50 years. Never been profession, but always a hobby, tool in my hands. My knife, hammer, saw and axe. I put everything available into numbers and turn numbers into graphs. Or readable words into electronic text as in this case offering to reader possibilities to manage and use the text further in a handy way. This I could not have imagined even in my adult youthood times!
The transformation to this form has given me a lot of trouble, but even more joy and satisfaction.

This remarkable book deserves the most ample distribution also in other languages. The overwhelming strength of this text is based on:
1. Versatile stock of concepts and definitions
2. Clear-cut presentarion of historical etaps
3. Good summaries of scientific process up to the levels of practical application and needs of financial resources and popular acceptance of scientific results

I feel myself a full-blooded Krizhanichist! And a Cherzhinskist!

116. Book rus, summary: ajkNotes

Помпеев Ю.А.: Очерки по истории европейской научной мысли*****

Essays on the History of European scientific thinking

Finally I have got what I have aimed at: one of the finest books I know to easily readable electronic html guise. The present form is one of several alternatives and not even the most popular ones, however one by which the text is completely manageable and available better than in the form of any paper book. Text size and appearance of the text, moving back and forth, availability of inside and outside references, use of dictionary, making notes, easy access and return to the text. In all of these aspects ebook is preferable to the right honourable 500 year old form of paper book as is the automobile preferable to the romantic horse cart however luxuriously built it might be. Only a reader who has never tasted an ebook can seriously maintain the opposite. I have successfully published 100 thousand paper books in 1967-1995 (http://www.askokorpela.fi/harraste/kirjat/AJK-Oblozhki-960x768.jpg ) and still am publishing 30 as samizdat available on the Amazon book store http://www.askokorpela.fi/CreateSpace/AmaBks/AmaBks.htm . I have read my last paper book several years ago an could in no way be persuaded to read any more. Simply for the several practical reasons above mentioned. But still the main reason for me to turn this and other books into ebooks is not the practical result, but the work of getting it, the computer programming, my daily hobby for over 50 years. Never been profession, but always a hobby, tool in my hands. My knife, hammer, saw and axe. I put everything available into numbers and turn numbers into graphs. Or readable words into electronic text as in this case offering to reader possibilities to manage and use the text further in a handy way. This I could not have imagined even in my adult youthood times!
The transformation to this form has given me a lot of trouble, but even more joy and satisfaction.

This remarkable book deserves the most ample distribution also in other languages. The overwhelming strength of this text is based on:
1. Versatile stock of concepts and definitions
2. Clear-cut presentarion of historical etaps
3. Good summaries of scientific process up to the levels of practical application and needs of financial resources and popular acceptance of scientific results

I feel myself a full-blooded Krizhanichist! And a Cherzhinskist!

117. Book rus, summary: ajkNotes

Помпеев Ю.А.: Очерки по истории европейской научной мысли*****

Very good and useful book

From the first to the last page of interest. Awesome amount of knowledge.
Just come up with a method to measure the book value from the reader's point of view: count what percentage of individuals in the index and bibliography are known in advance. In my present case, I guess that less than half. Curiously I counted from the first 200. Result 76/200 = 38% of the names (of 500) but of 122 points of referred literature lists only 4 are familiar to me. Since 1964 I have entered in a list all the 1000 books I have read. Here are two schedules, the first of paper books and the second of ebooks.

paper books

With this book as of general importance from my point of view of education, in addition to a handful of purely professional, only a half-dozen books can be compared, such as the following
118. Book rus, summary: ajkNotes

Помпеев Юрий: Петербург самодержавый*****

St. Petersburg autocracy

20171115 Full speed, ferocious, wild as a troika in whirlwind and storm in winter! Yuri Alexandrovich being an excellent coachman !
A virtual wizard of words. Can immediately penetrate the reader's skin with his feet on the ground kind of writing!
20171118 What a delight to read such a text! Undoubtedly I want to read everything what I manage to get into the hands of the compositions of Yuriy Alexandrovich!
Today I downloaded from Amazon in Russian three works of A N. Radishchev, among others Путешествие, expense $ 2.47!
20171119 Obviously strictly documentally based history, but at the same time at an enchanting and entertaining story!
20171122 Unpleasant though plausible reading, chapters 12-15
20171124 Extremely dramatic events. The author does not adorn, gloat with them, does not save the reader from injustice or cruelties, but he also does not groan with them. What a joy and charm it would be to interpret Yuri Alexandrovich's lectures on the history of Russia. I have experience: 20 years - translator of the Moscow rector of Plekhanov Institute in Finland and ours in Moscow.
What can I add to one of the most excellent reading experiences of all my life? Of course to that has its influence, that with pride I consider the author to my dear personal friends. But I am completely sure that any reader knows how to appreciate all the excellent aspects of this work, style, clarity, consistency, fiction, strength of expression ... How much I would like to translate this book into English and into Finnish! Only my high age prevents. I would not even doubt the in a certain sense unfamiliar topic, the history of the dynasty and autocracy.
This story has quite a peculiar end: the Russian Revolution of 1917, exactly one hundred years ago. After just ten days we in Finland celebrate the centenary of the Finnish state, and less than a month ago was the feast of the centennary of the Russian October Revolution. In electronic media there is a flood of material on this occasion. I just watched the three-part, three-hour program of the BBC on this occasion. Quality is something that can be expected from the BBC, first-class, done without saving money, not physical, nor intellectual efforts, with countless interviews of Russian specialists. But there is very little new for me, all is as drawn on the basis of books by Yuri Alexandrovich.
But at the very end of the program, its last open-ended question was as straight from my lips: Would there be the possibility of a non-existence of all this, and Russia's peaceful transition to a constitutional monarchy as it exists in Britain? And millions of human souls would afterwards have been saved. I understood from a short exchange of letters with Yuri Alexandrovich that he considers it the only possibility what happened. The BBC says: unless Nikolai were so self-willed, stubborn. It would be interesting to know if such an opinion exists in the serious sense of the word in Russia. In my opinion, everything did not only depend on Nicholas, but also, and even more on the people and agitated groups. I am a steady fan of individual independence and I think that a group is focused on stupidity.
119. Book rus, summary: ajkNotes

Помпеев Ю.А.: Творцы Петергофа****

Guaranteed quality

Now and then I start reading a book knowing already in advance that the book will be good. Petergof by Yuriye Pompejev was such a case. Guaranteed quality. And I was not disappointed, although the scope of the book does not exactly corresponding my present taste requirements. But the author knows how to please me. He has the rare ability of handling a general subject in personal terms. So in this case, too. A detailed study with an enormous amount of factual knowledge impossible for me to digest is presented in personal context to living people, here the administrators of this great museum. The administrator В.В. Знаменов and his aid Н.В. Верновa really devoted their lives to the museum. No regular working hours, but a way of life, no burden but enjoyment is described in a masterly way by the author. Very distressing was the war time. The whole area, big part of the collections were destroyed. But the more hopeful and gracious was the path from ruins to the new prosperity of this gem of Russian, and not only Russian, but world culture. With great enthusiasm did the administrators and their team recollect the contents of the exhibitions. They did not work alone, but got a wide acceptance both by corresponding top institutions an the general public.
I myself have also visited this monumental place and written a travel story of my impressions. The park with endless golden fountains returns live to my memory. http://www.askokorpela.fi/harraste/matkat/200405-Pietari/YlenSenioritPietarissa-20040514-pe.htm

And not only that but a surprising close connection to my home county Virolahti. Actually the stone quarries and their significance in the construction of St Petersburg was all known. No big surprise that it concerns also Petergof. I also did know that the emperor Nikolai had visited my home county, but until I found it mentioned in this book and looked up the sources, did I know the details and extension of the emperor's stay in Virolahti. Several visits, some time almost the whole summer. Walks and contacts with local population and a curiosity: the first tennis court in Finland, within the premises of his majesty in Virolahti. Below a nice account of these facts, also in Russian.
Actually this book would deserve all five stars, but this time I give only four to show the difference between this text and another the Essays in the European scientific thinking by the same author. The later completely corresponds my highest requirements of an excellent book. It is one of the best I have ever read. This is the same by the standard of this text, but clearly inferior of my personal taste of the subject matter.
120. Book eng, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Ritu Rao: The light SHIFT 21 Simple Ways to Make Your Days...****

Ritu Rao: A Boost for Self-Confidence

At first reading this book you get a feeling of too deeply frozen 'instant guide to happiness' there are although right things all the way. But after some ten pages of the text I am getting inspired and starting to mark highlights as well as sending screenshot of meditation to a friend who does it every single morning.
Congratulations, you with timestamp unfortunate American for using the marking (2013-04-23). I know and have daily since the turn of millennium everywhere used still better: 20130423.
Reading chapter 7 I am really getting fascinated. Although quite recently boasting to somebody suggesting to me that I should give serious consideration on the future of humanity: continuing the present way to hell or for hope of something better, yes boasting: why an instant to thoughts about future at this age of 78, when there is no such thing as the future, better to concentrate on today, carpe diem, to he'll with the future.
In spite of the taste of instant guide this text is really fascinating. Hope to keep in mind what it says: it is up to you to 'Make Your Days Interesting, Get Unstuck and Beat the Daily Grind' as the subheading of the bookdwarf self-consciously says. Even returning to this text with table of contents in the wrong end you would not lose anything, but on the contrary: gain for the benefit of self conscience and perhaps a fresh start for a troubled mind.
By the way, I cannot get rid of wondering: is the author he or she until I get the answer neatly in a blurb talking of her. Still the name irritates me: what is her origin? A Finn? As the first name hints to.
121. Book eng, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Henry Ray: Learn Italian In 21 DAYS!****

Five star book deserving only four stars

As a passionate language learner I love this book: hook, worm and line, or how was the old proverb? For me as the inventor of the concept Revolution of Learning (as a derivative of Amazon's well-deserved epitet of Revolution of Reading for Kindle) this book together with other of its kind is a true banner. The notion itself is exemplified and explained in http://www.askokorpela.fi/MyeBooks/MyeBooks.htm.
The big thing in this book by Henry Ray is the all over format of the book, an ingeniuous mixture of grammar and really necessary words and expressions. Together with detailed live table of contents the book is a handy source of reference to which I already have returned several times.
A small, but in my opinion very important innovation is the change to page numbering, also in table of ccpntent where it gives to reader a good touch of the structure and prportions of the text, which the ebooks have been lacking in handicap to paper books. Not any more as far as Amazon continues this paractice.
If so revolutionary, why then only four stars and not five? Because this book is not properly finished. There are an incredible number of typos and at least as many inconsistencies of form and structure. For instance in tables for formating the text. Why so narrow tables? In many places forcing the text into cell prisons and leaving more than half of the page empty. It makes even short expressions to be presented on three lines, not beautiful, uneven breadth of colums without any visible logical reason. Ugly, ugly, ugly, just the opposite of the aim and purpose of the concept of this ingenious language guide format. Another inconsistency is order of languages: Italian - English, English - Italian It varies inconsequenly giving an impression of uncareful finishing.
Still for Amazon to improve: please introduce boldly the only sensible timestamp of yyyymmdd to be used in bookmarks etc. Several businesses have introduced it, why not also Amazon?

Feedback to Amazon

My 'Revolution in Learning' MyeBooks system enables notes on errors. Please find at least twenty of them in the otherwise excellent book by Ray: Italian in 21 days. MyeBooks
122. Book eng, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Henry Ray: Learn Portuguese In 21 DAYS!****

Good and concise

Never seen such unfinished by the last touch of the author book: typos all over
Never seen such a good and concise introduction into a language.
Contains an excellent linked table of contents, but it is never referred anywhere in the book. Luckily I found it and have several times through it referred to specific points of this excellent book.
The blatant faults of this book need one hour of work and it is perfect as a handbook for person learning the language.
Four stars is just the correct assessment, five after finishing touch would be correct.
123. Book hun, summary: ajkNotes

Rejtő Jenő: Az ellopott század***

Stolen reader

If I had thought better, maybe I had not chosen this book. The main reason, why I took it was the misinterpretation of the book title. I thought that 'Ellopott század' means 'Stolen century' - a history book, instead of 'Stolen company' - an usual Rejtő adventure in Africa, of which I have already read two or three. How could he go over from his own genre to a different one! The problem is that Rejtő is first class narrator and language teacher for me. Easily seen in my notes for Hungarian words.
The idea of the story is that two adventurers by mistake take (in other purpose dressed in military uniforms) into their command a company of soldiers. Then lead them to false destinations, finally to danger of death - by lack of water in the midst of dry desert. Descriptive of the whole story is the last replique: 'Maguk csak szidnak... Pedig talán egy század katonát sem tudnának ellopni nélkülem.' = You're just scolding ... And maybe a hundred soldiers couldn't be stolen without me.
Actually I could well give four stars, even five for the language, but being disppointed of the topic, because of hurt selfconfidence, my revenge is three stars.
124. Book hun, summary: ajkNotes, available: Ama, review: eng

Rejto Jeno: A tizennégy karátos autó****

Where is the beef?

Another very entertaining Rejto in Hungarian, the language that seems to me the most difficult of all. The difficulty is completely revealed in the highest number of word lookups per 100 pages of text: four or five times the average of my ebook reading. Therefore I must ask the classic question: Where is the beef?

When reading I have the curious feeling of at the same time understanding and not understanding what is going on. I read with normal speed, if not even more rapidly than on the average. Using Google Translator the word lookups and entering to my MyeBooks system goes in seconds and I have the feeling of (almost) completely following the line. But at the end, I have not succeeded to grasp the general idea of this book. What I have grasped is a necklace of glass pearls, a sequence of loose events, unexpected turns of story, hilarious discussions with short repliques, scorned fights with and without weapons of various qualities. Travel and driving with a car of peculiar properties derived from the very special material of the caross, gold. Unusual distance of acceleration and braking because of the weight of the vehicle. This last property is also the reason for which the very special Rolls Royce is dropped with giant splash to the bottom of sea when handled by crane at harbor.

Of all these ingredients I manage to cook up another Rejto, with intention to read still another, to learn, or at least to try memorizing lots of Hungarian words. But still asking: Whrere is the beef of the book? For me no aim, no continuity, no conclusions, just loose episodes with thin connecting line. For me, however, more valuable than an average flat story of three stars, consequently: four stars.
125. Book spa, summary: ajkNotes, review: spa

Arturo Pérez Reverte: Una historia de España***

Decreasing disappointment towards the end of the book

After a couple of months practically daily watching my newly acquired Spanish tv channel and finding it the best of all ten I have hired (three Russian, one each of French, Italian, Spanish, German, Estonian, Swedish and English, so the best in hard competition!), I wanted to have more background information in the sympathetic Spanish society. Of course, I have some ten times spent a week or so in Spain as a tourist and three years learned the language (almost 60 years ago), read almost hundred books, so being basically informed already beforehand.
This Pérez-Reverte book was first on line available in the Amazon book shop, my usual source for reading. Despite of many recommendations I must say that I was disappointed. And confused. First I doubted my knowledge of the language. That, of course, it also was. But not in the usual sense. Mainly three things were disappointing: first I paid notice on very long sentences, even screen long. At the end of several I did not remember what was the beginning. Another my personal weakness were the amount of unknown to me words to be searched in the web dictionary, uncommonly many of which were not found. The third cause of disappointment were strange idioms and kicks over the bar, so to say, loose remarks out of subject. I was irritated. Never interrupting book before end I dcided to read another book in the Spanish history. But to my satisfaction, towards the end of this book, I became more affected and understanding of the author's message. Still not becoming aware whether the real reason for my disappointtment was the author or only myself with my ignorance.
My honest assessment is three stars, no less,no more.
126. Book est, summary: ajkNotes

Jorma Rotko: Armas Amalie*****

Full five star book

A full five star book! Needless to nibble on any feature, not hypocritically even on too much sex as in Vitsataipale. Everything is enough, nothing too much. At only one point about halfway through, I remember waking up from quick reading, because I couldn't follow the detailed genealogy. The only suggestion for improvement is the addition of family trees. At least to Romanovs' we have easy access, whatever the licenses might be. I still praise and admire the amount of factual knowledge the author uses and the skill of making fact and fiction to such a delicious cocktail, a mix for the reader to taste. It would be interesting to know at what timespan this is possible. Is there a giant library, a giant memory, a supercomputer ... The facts of my writings come from a standard computer and this way from around the world. Already four years ago, I managed to take my whole library to a divary, to the continuation of an enormous volume of books. Good that I didn't have to pay anything. Within 30 centimeters, all the world's information, books, bookstores and libraries are in front of my nose. A library I last visited 60 years ago, a bookstore ten years ago. Still, I read an average of three hours a day. I just read four, yesterday when I read the latter half of Amalia.
I think that I have a rough grading scale on all counts, and that it is because of my statistical, stochastic, attitude. In my life it replaces religion. I have consciously embraced it more or less 60 years ago, in university studies I began at School of Economics. I came up with the idea in the summer of 1958 at my summer pre-study job with a coworker who had been studying law for a year and declared that he had a 'juridiskt tänkesätt' (juridical way of thinking). A statistical way of pleading suits me. That's the essential feature: you don't need to know exactly. This is also incljded in my 'ajksioms', included in my lectures to my students. Yes, I can find it still in my computer.
I am an absolute number man, I turn everything to numbers (and numbers to graphics), but still in ajksioms I warn: do not use your young life in ​​writing unnecessary numbers! The same goes for writing: don't bother your readers with unnecessary words. Jorma Rotko seems to be consciously or unconsciously following this instruction. I have embraced it from not more or less than Sibelius, who reportedly said that one should not write useless notes. On this basis, I am skeptical of current fiction. I get the impression that it is full of foul language, curses, words from the most unnecessary end. One talented devil-writer for that reason alone, I had to abandon. I just gave a downgraded rating to a history book, not because of the profane words but other unnecessary parts of the text.
Well, now there is too much emphasis on what is not in this text. By the way, I can't go into the details of this book anyway, but I thank the use of subtitles, one eyeball for my reading. It so much makes it easier for slow-minded and forgetful readers. I do not proclaim myself being that way, but the reader is always in a more subdued position because of the fact that the author has spent a lot of time writing, the reader just getting acquainted. It's an embarrassing thing that the very tops of world literature are screaming for subtitles. In Russian classics, silly Roman numbering instead of headings. Fourteen untitled chapters in Seven Brothers by Aleksis Kivi! And to those, if any, it would probably be easy to add a title. That is why I have declared a competition for this. No participants have appeared, however
While reading, I figured I'd be ready to buy Amalia as a paperback book, if I could get this review attached to it, as there are more than a hundred reviews on Amazon nowadays. I am not so sure any more, this text being so long and too personal. Of all what I read today, I write a review. For Amazon everything is okay, as long as I do not use profanity. Recently I was trying ice on a stick and I sent a Russian-language one from what I read in Russian. It was accepted. The previous two did not work, English was good. I always write in English, except now this, for an experiment in Finnish. Google translates just fine, though the blunders must always be fixed, translations from one language to another, except from Finnish and to Finnish. Absolutely my best language teacher and writing summaries are my favorite job in reading ebooks and building my MyeBooks archive.
As a general rule, I justify the number of stars I have given at the end of the review, with a little wisdom. In this case it was something that had done right from the start. So, of course five stars and water in the tongue in waiting for Jorma Rothko's next book.
127. Book est, summary: ajkNotes

Jorma Rotko: Kass nimega Jossif*****

Another favorite Rotko

This is an unconditional favorite book and reading for me, an inextricable bundle of fact and fiction, grass root and general, private and social, an educative and astonishing source of knowledge. A Ken Follett class of unconditional five star book. Only few authors reach this level in my ranking. In this particular genre of nonfiction I would like to mention Mika Waltari, Jaan Kross, Harari, Pompeyev, Balashov, Schainkman... If possible, I would like, and have tried to read the whole production of these authors. MyeBooksAbc
What particular should I say of this Jossif? In fact, very little, without repeating it word by word. Perhaps again state the amount of sheer factual information contained in it. Before reading this book I did not know half of the historical facts about Stalin and practically nothing of his way to the top of world class leaders. Here this path is described step by step with due references to other Soviet leadership and World leaders. Typical to Rotko are the ample references to the grass root level everyday life and women. In one of Rotko books I remember having criticised him about exaggerating sexual relationships. In this case no reason for that. Another striking particularity in my opinion is the end of the book, Stalin's death. I am pretty sure that it is not just a flop by coincidence, but a deliberate choice of zero stars of appreciation by the author prepresenting the opinion of all of us and the whole mankind in all of us.
Easy to guess my assessment of five stars for the Kass nimega Jossif by Jorma Rotko. (ajk)
128. Book fin, summary: ajkNotes

Jorma Rotko: pa*****

An incredible seatour

...and another fascinating JR book. This time the story touched even widerr scale of feelings than the previous ones. Feelings of approbation and disgust. The strong line of knowledgeful informative facts and pleasant readability continues.
I do not suddenly remember having elsewhere read such disgusting description of jurisprudence as here in the chapter of Uskoo, mutta väärin...roviolle. Does this continue to the end of the book? Do I have to interupt reading altogether? Luckily not. Going over to speedreading was my solution. The intensity of diisgust is increased by the author's exceptional power of words. On the other hand, this text contains also a completely unexpected element of approbation in the field of feelings normally untouching matters. I mean the whole subject of mennonites. I was deeply astonished finding mennonites mentioned in this text. And am very grateful for all treatment of mennonites. Not so much for the contents of their religion as for their history, life and habits in general. This is beecause i have my own experience with menonites. Two weeks as guest of the Amish people at the New year and Easter in 1974 in Pennsylvania Dutch community. Very pleasant memories from the one year Asla Fullbrigh grant time with my famkly at the Pennsylvania University. In this book I found a lot of interesting information about mennonites, part of it already known, part of new, particularly of their history. Perhaps just about the very origin of this community we got acquainted with in Lancaster, Pennsylvania.
Then there was interesting thngs about the everyday life, so characteristic to the preseng authos, such as a thorough report of the history of salt and maps and navigation, such concepts as the measures of lengtht, time and money. I have one summer, 1960, daily handled as shop assistent the English money of that time, got several times reprimands for giving back to clients according to decimal system only 2 pence instead of 4 of a shilling,when the client paid for 8 pence. And only now, thanks to JR, did I learn the origin of this 1:20:12 system. The same goes fof such strange measures as knots on sea and hour system of time. I am almost shamed of only now learning about these important things. The more grateful to Jorma Rotko.
About up to the middle of this book i was lulled to the idea of JR this time not deserving the highesg rating because of too wide handling of high level family trees and other such things. The the focus was changed to closer of my grass root level interests and I became convinced that Jlrma Rotko continues his triumph journey just as before, one of my 10 favorite writers of all categories and times. Five stars, no question about less than that.
129. Book fin, summary: ajkNotes, available: Apollo nettikirjakauppa">ama

Jorma Rotko: Vitsataipaleen kulta*****

Vauhdikas Vitsataipale

Rapid Rodway as the heading could be translated, Vitsataipale being a placename. G-map knows only Vitsataipaleenlahti, but not in Vyborg, but near Heinola. But Wiki knows: Vitsataipale (myös Vitsakylä,[1] ven. Вычетайбола, Vytšetaibola, Вичаны, Vitšany) on entinen kylä ja volosti Karjalan tasavallan Louhen piirin Ambarnyin kunnassa Venäjällä. Kylä sijaitsi Kierettijärven saaressa 40 kilometriä Ambarnyista linnuntietä länteen. A village, a few hundred km North from Vyborg. Considering the author's sovereign skill of mixing fact and fiction his Vitsataipale could as well be on Earth or in Heaven. Both would equally serve his purpose. The same would be true about the gold, the behind the back hiding formal subject matter of this book, titled Vitsataipaleen kulta, The Gold of Vitsataipale. At least the information about the various aspects of the quantity of the gold attracts imagination. Not so all place names, they are commonplace genuine and an important factor glueing this fantastic story to the real world.
This story is really fantastic, as well in its realism as in its power of imagination. If so wanted, the author could join a very long list of footnotes about the historical details of events and persons. I am only asking how and where? So deep into details that well-saved archives of local newspapers seem to be the only solution of this riddle. And not only the localities of the present Finland, but those of the part surrendered to Russia after WW2. Lift the cap and bow!
And what about the fantastic fiction? Unless there are detailed written memories of several persons available to the author, which I dare doubt, only his exceptionally powerful imagination could have produced this masterwork. Not at all that this would be so revolutionary as to deserve the nomination of a new genre. On the contrary, there are proliferous counterparts, predecessors if so wanted. As much as I ask about the origin of his historical facts, more than once I have been asking, whether he consciously has followed some masters of this genre. Just now, and only recently started, I am reading one soveregn master of this genre, Ken Follett, the fifth of his thousand-pagers. Not long ago I also have read Elena Ferrante and the nobelist Orhan Pamuk. What is this genre, so new fo me, an old (82) reader? I do not know its common name, perhaps it does not even exist, but clear-cut and easy to define: free sex, natural in every day life context, clearly above some smeary hinting pornography. Ferrante, alhough so popular, does not, in my opinion, reach this level. Pamuk even less. His pre-Nobel My Name is Red underscores and post-Nobel History of innocese simply does not reach the level, in my opinion. Also the present author slightly overscores, only Follett hits the bull's eye - 😁.
Soon after reading a couple of chapters was I ready to give all fife stars as my assessment, so even on overscoring the sex. But then, the last chapter ruined the five definitely! How historically true it might be, I do not want to read about such atrocities and gruelties as were descripted in the last chapter. End and punkt! With some hesitation do I grab the next book of Rotko. Four stars for this, only cock-step below Nobel class masterwork.
130. Book swe, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Mikael Schainkman: Sveriges historia*****

Unique history book

It really is - worth reading. Never seen before. No wonder the author has fled the battlefield after glasshouse having been stonebombarded by green of envy colleagues! I would like to be carried on stretcers (by the way, almost the only way because of weak legs) to hear this man lecturing of these topics.

What is so special and fascinating in this Shainkman's book of the Swedish history? - the way he brings it forth. There are ways and ways. Telling a nation's history requires a serene approach and traditonal wording. Shainkman does it in a very different manner: telling gossip after gossip after gossip... all the way from stone age to present time. You don't know, whether laugh or cry, but soon you start speeding and enjoying the very green grass root level text and expecting the next wooden leg joke about that and that well-known celebrity or event. Gossip style, but never crossing the border of good taste or malevolence or lack of due respect.

For me the top outcome of the whole story is the impression that most wars of the past were begun for personal whims and coquettery of the regents. The glory gained sooner or later ending to scrap heap or to the croft of the hero, usually sooner. Remember only Gustaf II Adolf dying on the battle field defending his faith far from home or Karl XII retourning tail between legs incognito from his grand European tournee after his protector the Sultan getting fed up with a too long stay of the guest. Another tone of the book are the high level love stories with most entertaining low level very human intimacies.

All in all, a very entertaining book contrebanding all essentials of the patriotic history. Five stars without the least hesitation. 20150428

131. Book afr, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Helena van Schalkwyk: Teach Yourself Afrikaans****

Afrikaans my language number 21

Interesting experience. I just collided with the language, when looking for suitable reading in any language in Amazon bookshop. First I read Alice in Wonderland, but did not learn anything from it. So i decided to take this. I have several experiences of books Teach yourself... The latest of Hungarian, which i did four times. It was good, this is gold, but i doubt whether I will read it another time. But i would be interested to read another good book. As a matter of fact, i searched some classic, for instance Dostoyevski's Crime and punishment, but did not find.
This is well recommendable, well done and entertaining, well worth of four stars.
132. Book por, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Arthur Schopenhauer: A Metafísica do Amor**

Collected splinters of Schopenhauer

This is no real Schopenhauer, but some collected splinters flown apart, when something more essential has been sculpted by the master - as it seems to me.
But as it happens, the ideas of the leading essay 'A metafisica do Amor' would arise a tidal wave of opinions if presented in Facebook or other modern means of mass communication now. He would be suffocated by MeToo, no doubt about it. To such extend he exaggerates the diffrence between the two genders, to the detriment of the complete woman race. For him women cannot do just enything else than be beautiful and gossip, and adore men. "O simples aspeto da mulher revela que ela não é destinada nem a grandes trabalhos da inteligência, nem aos grandes trabalhos materiais." (The mere appearance of the woman reveals that she is not destined to great works of intelligence, nor to great material works.) And further his words: "Therefore, the man is always in search of other women; while the woman remains faithfully united to one man: Hence it follows that fidelity in marriage is something artificial for man and natural in woman, and consequently adultery of woman, both because of its consequences and because it is contrary to nature, is much more unforgivable than that of man." Not just the weather forecast of tidal wave, but a tsunami would be appropriate. No indicia that anything like that would have happened in his time, two hundred years ago.
The rest of this collection is more tame text, created as if in need of some pocket money from the contracted publisher of regular contributions.
No need to return to this sublevel product of my absolute favorite philosopher. This book is worth just two stars to remind me to keep fingers out of it.

133. Book ita, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: ita

Arthur Schopenhauer: Il mondo come volontà e rappresentazione*****

A joyous masterpiece

"Philosophy is a science, and consequently does not fall within the creeds; according to it nothing can be assumed as being, except what is either empirically confirmed or proven irrefutably by conclusions ".
This, in my opinion, is quoted as the nutshell of Schopenhauer aptly in Wikipedia. According to the same source of information, Schopenhauer wrote his main work Die Welt als Wille und Vorstellung (The World as Will and Representation), barely 30 years old. One and a half years after its appearance it had not been sold yet a piece! In this work the core, according to the author, is:
Il mondo della rappresentazione, che io ho indicato come oggettità, è specchio della volontà.
With the concept the world, which I have shown to be an object, is the the mirror of the will.
And here are the result of the whole sophistical treatment:
"Noi vogliamo piuttosto liberamente dichiarare: quel che rimane dopo la soppressione completa della volontà è invero, per tutti coloro che della volontà ancora son pieni, il nulla. Ma viceversa per gli altri, in cui la volontà si è rivolta da se stessa e rinnegata, questo nostro universo tanto reale, con tutti i suoi soli e le sue vie lattee, è - il nulla."
We want a fairly freely declare: what remains after the complete elimination of the will is indeed for those who are still full of the will, nothing. But on the other hand to the other, where the will is transformed into oneself and become negated, this is our real universe with all its suns and milkways, it is - nothing, zero.
How I would like to translate the whole work! It might become difficult, but it is full of the real treats.
134. Book hun, summary: ajkNotes, available: gut

Arthur Schopenhauer: Az akarat szabadságáról****

Desire of freedom

I wanted to refresh my Hungarian language. What would be more appropriate than read some Schopenhauer? But it was easier desired than done. I had hard times finding it. No trace of Schopenhauer in Hungarian in my favorite Amazon bookstore. What about Gutenberg? After some, rather tedious, rambling here and there, I found Desire of freedom.
First it took some time and effort getting used to the Hungarian language and philosophic terminology. Long list of words grew when reading. I had the unpleasant feeling of not seeing the forest from the trees. As if the author hkmself could not decide, what it was: the desire of freedom. As usual, authorities, that is: giants of philosophy from Aristoteles to Kant were referred as well as Augustinus, the church father. Do we have free will or don't we. This ks one of ths toughest question all philosophy. Who can give a definite answer? Nobody - it seems to me. Then further: what about the desire of possessing, having free will? What was Schope's, as I call him familiarly as some other great personalities like Dosto and Shake for example, so what was Schope's final word of this topic? Yes, he cited Malembrance with the words "la liberté est un mystère". I myself staycontent with the same.
After lingering fron two stars, not so much because of Schope than me not seeing forest from trees, the number of stars gradually grew to four. Schope is irresistible in any language.

135. Book ger, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: ger

Arthur Schopenhauer: Über die vierfache Wurzel des Satzes ..*****

Wurzel des Satzes - Roots of the sentence

What a good heading of an important topic, just as 'Head of the nail'. But then: What are these roots of the sentence? I really set out looking for them, the Philosopher's Stone. I had done it already one time before, but given up, nothing found but endless references to all possible known philosophers. One said this, the other that. I gave up and read something else, other Schopenhauer, too. And ended up his dog true disciple. Schopenhauer became my absolute favorite. The best of him, his furious attacs on University Philosophy and professors of philosophy, those philosaphsters and goodfornothings, Hegel being their guiding star, a complete null.

There is a certain lure for me personally: our frustrated cabinet members invented the expression of futile professors and docents, not being able to suggest proper economic policy. I am inclined to join. Economic policy is formulated the wrong way round, focusing to supply in stead of demand as it should be. But that is another story. This Schopenhauers' professors another. But also they disturb the search for the roots of the sentence.

Only on the second reading reaching over the professors comprising about the first half of the book do I bounce to the obvious four roots of the sentence: to each of them dedicated a separate paragraph: logical, empirical, transcendental and metalogical truthfulness. Two first being clear without further explanation, the other two needing a closer look, spiced up with greetings to professors and Tagelohnübersetzers. This is one of the first, if not the first publication of the perspicasious thinker. What a joy to read the second part of the book.

This book well deserves its all five stars despite the rotten first part to use the hars attribute learned from the author himself. In spasms of enthusiasm I have already started anlthe Schopenhauer in another language, Te desire of freedom in Hungarian, Az akarat szabadszágáról.

136. Book hun, summary: ajkNotes, available: gut

Arthur Schopenhauer: Az akarat szabadságáról****

Desire of freedom

I wanted to refresh my Hungarian language. What would be more appropriate than read some Schopenhauer? But it was easier desired than done. I had hard times finding it. No trace of Schopenhauer in Hungarian in my favorite Amazon bookstore. What about Gutenberg? After some, rather tedious, rambling here and there, I found Desire of freedom.
First it took some time and effort getting used to the Hungarian language and philosophic terminology. Long list of words grew when reading. I had the unpleasant feeling of not seeing the forest from the trees. As if the author hkmself could not decide, what it was: the desire of freedom. As usual, authorities, that is: giants of philosophy from Aristoteles to Kant were referred as well as Augustinus, the church father. Do we have free will or don't we. This ks one of ths toughest question all philosophy. Who can give a definite answer? Nobody - it seems to me. Then further: what about the desire of possessing, having free will? What was Schope's, as I call him familiarly as some other great personalities like Dosto and Shake for example, so what was Schope's final word of this topic? Yes, he cited Malembrance with the words "la liberté est un mystère". I myself staycontent with the same.
After lingering fron two stars, not so much because of Schope than me not seeing forest from trees, the number of stars gradually grew to four. Schope is irresistible in any language.
137. Book eng, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Lucius Seneca: On the shortness of life****

Wisdom and platitudes

I have listened on radio a discussion of two wise men about this book On the shortness of life by an Antique master Seneca. No point denying the interest and importance of the subject. Not even at the protracted age of mine, 81. And the further it continues, the swifter it goes towards the inexcusable end. In this respect nothing has changed in 2000 years since Seneca. But what was the wisdom of this book?
I marked three sentences as the kernel of Seneca's argumentation and story.
1. It is not that we have a short space of time, but that we waste much of it.
2. Can anything be sillier than the point of view of certain people — I mean those who boast of their foresight?
3. Present time is very brief, so brief, indeed, that to some there seems to be none;
They seem to be very true, but somewhat self-evident and truisms at the same time. Everybody's experience. But perhaps a top philosopher is needed to express and explain them in words.
What else did I learn of this miniature book? Some features of the Roman life 2000 years ago. About the narrowest of the social class being able of considering this kind of wisdom. Some seed of doubt creeps to my mind. Has not any manual worker, not to speak of accompanying slaves, the same thinking organ of brains than their masters? And a piquant detail: already that time Romans used to burn brown their skin on the beach!
There was one grain of wisdom that I did not understand and consider more snobbish truism than a real wisdom.
"It takes the whole of life to learn how to live, and — what will perhaps make you wonder more — it takes the whole of life to learn how to die." Somehow I do not understand the latter part, whole life learning to die. What on earth can it mean? I at least, have not been trying to learn denying.
I cannot deny that I was disappointed, although did not expect too much on the basis of the radio program I had listened. More than three stars I cannot allow?
138. Book eng, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Adam Smith: The Theory of Moral Sentiments (Illustrated)*****

Excellent book with imroved Kindle

There are two aspects in this review. One is about the book and the other about Amazon's contribution to the Revolution in Reading.
First of all the book. I am reading Adam Smith's The Theory of Moral Sentiments the second time and the second time preparing my MyeBooks notes on it. It will be interesting to compare those two in my system of no less than the Revolution in Learning. As professor of economics I have also read Adam Smith's even more famous book The Wealth of Nations, even if half a century later than I should have. His easily recognizable very personal way of writing and suffocating the reader with, least to say, proliferous zunami of detailed text is at the same time entertaining and really suffocating. But also completely convincing. They say about some political leaders that they have the Nile or an Amazon of thoughts. Adam Smith, too. He would deserve of being a big political boss. As he in reality also is. The best economic policy is conducted on the basis of his still valid thoughts on economics, which in turn are based on his Theory of Moral Sentiments presented in this book. No need, and no competence to go into the mydiad of details here. Overwhelming.

Secondly, some words about my first experience with Amazon's new improvements of Kindle. During the five years I have been using Kindle, it has changed, improved a lot. Many times I have had the feeling that Amazon has taken into account the suggestions I have made in my feedback. Perhaps, perhaps not needed, because they have been so obvious that anybody could have requested them and Amazon's skilled programmers could have worked on their own.
Two big improvements I see first time in this book. I do not know the proper term, but name it the 'surrounded screen'. And the X-ray property. By introducing the ingenious toggling between full screen and surrounded screen has brought to the ebook one of the still missing properties of paper book: 'leafing around'. Making the reading a cosy event. I would say that I alternate big screen and surrounded about half and half of the time. It is astonishing that the surrounded can really be read without trouble although it is given with remarkably smaller font. l use the surrounded for speedy reading, seem to grasp the whole screen with one glance, somehow picking the beef quicly, or use surrounded for speeding uninteresting spots of text.
The X-ray property is an excellent supplement for constant looking up in Wiki. An improvement to lookups, because there are summaries of several lookups and sorted list of persons, events etc. But Amazon could easily take a couple of further cock steps forwards. Google maps could be provided in connection to place names. With the fine properties of measuring distance, showing road and giving prepared information in pictures and summaries.
But then there is not but a cock step, but a big leap to be made by Amazon to make Kindle another Revolution of Learning. Not just looking up words in dictionaries but also saving for future needs and memorizing the word definitions just as I have made in MyeBooks. http://www.askokorpela.fi/MyeBooks/MyeBooks.htm
Five stars without any hesitation.
139. Book eng, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Adam Smith: Wealth of Nations*****

Wealth of Nations (Optimized for Kindle)

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Adam Smith's value, October 24, 2013
This review is from: Wealth of Nations (Optimized for Kindle) (Kindle Edition)
Being a retired economist I should have read this book already 50 years ago! But better late than never. And on the other hand, reading this book there is nothing principally new. It is told that president Truman wanted to employ one handed economists, being fed up with this 'on the other hand' favorite phrase of economists rebutting the work of the first hand. On the other hand! - the most important statue of Lenin was him showing with his one hand the way to follow. We all know, where this economic policy ended.
Our Adam, the first man in economist's paradise, only - already 300+ years ago, created and founded all main corner stones on which we still to day are building. Supply and demand, and pursuing one's own best interest were and are the main clue of Smith's doctrines leading to economic well-being. Nothing has changed. The doctrine of supply and demand still helps to consumer being the king, even if the reign is largely different. Smith speaks of wool combers and barley traders, we of mobile phones and air tickets. The same laws are in power, however.
Even if completely enthusiastic about having read this book, I would not recommend it as an exam reading for students and understand very well why it was not included in my list 50 years ago. Why then? In his magnificent work Smith wanders through such an ocean of detailed information that nobody can comprise it. But never does he lose the clue. The conclusions are clear, firm and persuasive. Deficit production leads to rise in price and surplus to reduction. It is as simple as that. All artificial restrictions are finally harmful. That is the core of Smith's message. Very plausible at that time as well as it is to day.
No amount of stars can sufficiently appreciate this bloc of gold in our Western cultural tradition!
140. Book por, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Eduardo Ramos Coimbra de Souza: Schopenhauer e os conhecimentos intuitivo e abstrato****

Schopenhauer nutcracked

Eduardo Ramos Coimbra de Souza: Schopenhauer e os conhecimentos intuitivo e abstrato
Schopenhauer is all over described as the philosopher of pessimism as opposed to all other great philosphers. This is the most intricate proposition about him for me. It is said that he comes to the conclusion that life is not worth living. After having read his main work World as will and presentation (just happened to read it in Italian: Il mondo come volontà e rappresentazione) I got completely hooked, not so much by his philosophy as his colourful text and fierce attack against University Philosophy. In this Brazilian book we meet a somewhat different Schopenhauer. He is scrutinized in a way from outside, not even trying to intrude under the skin of the man but cross-cutting his ideas in a very University manner, diving neatly fo fine details. The main interest of de Souza is on the notion of - do I dare to use the word: knowledge. How knowledge is obtained. There are two main channels to knowledge: intuition or in a way gathering it around, and abstraction or deducing it conceptually. I must confess that I had trouble, difficulties and distraction trying to follow the path of thought in the first part of the book. Certain part of it was caused of unfamiliarity with the language and termonology. But then, in the second part of the book, I felt myself consideralbly more comfortable. Above all could really appreciate the fine and straightforward structuration and handling of the subject in the text. Characteristics of philosophy, mathematics and other sciences are clearly delineated as well as Schopenhauer's attitude towards them. Remarkable is his preference of fine arts above science. Perhaps just here is the nucleus of his pessimism as seen by his fellow men of science. Intuitive arts beating deductive and abstract science.
Clearly seeing the thorough professional approach but being just amateur not being able of completely appreciating it, I dare not give more than four stars as assessment.

141. Book pol, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Aleksander Sowa: Jeszcze jeden dzien w raju****

My first Polish bilingual

... and stays also my last bilingual from Amazon, unless the whole concept wil be renewed. There are three points to be improved: 1. Translation 2. Page numbering 3. Layout of translation.
Translation should not be left without human check after automatic translation as was the case here. Result full of small and big translation errors, unworty of Kindle quality. Translation should have an ordinary page numbering, nlt just one number like here. Impossible to find the translation. Translation should be placed as a second column running along the original text, not as one block at the end of the book.
I chose this book to refresh my Polish language. Despite the above remarks, this purpose was well served. Consider buying another book by this author with such fresh and surprising approach.
As to the text itself: a fresh surprise, an unprecedented way of telling a love story. Psychic an physic told completely intermingled still added with everyday modern life with computers and SMS. At first sounded strange, but soon familiar reality, if not just in this context. Very good dialogizing all over. A fine idea of telling, showing the whole cycle of the love story from ignition to extinction. An additional refinement: a double story, one continuing over the cycle of the other. Equally strong in the middle. Sounded quite probable in real life, certainly awakening memories any readers, including thlse from my own youth more than fifty years ago.
Despite of the freshness and genuine feeling only four stars, because of not corresponding completely my expectations as to the general genre of old man's suitable reading.
142. Book pol, summary: ajkNotes

Aleksander Sowa: Zauroczenie*****

Interesting text but inexcusable layout for reader

Another love story without sex. This is already the fourth in this for me new genre.
I start loving this genre. Always having liked romance, ordinary romance. But this is different, deeper than just romance. At first it seems to me being true and real, but then turns out to be sick fantasy, very well written, anyway. But completely inexcusably presented to the reader - and still worse: not the first and one offered by Amazon. A real Monday work by the programmer. Must unconditionally be improved. A very efficient and important means of learning languages.
143. Book pol, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Aleksander Sowa: Zla Milosc*****

Fantastic of its own kind!

This genre, dream story, must be one of the oldest, remembering the oriental Tales of 1001 nights, but for me new and fresh now. Very, very entertaining and amuzing! Deciding by the title, or none more by the cover picture, you could never guess about the contents. And, nonetheless, both the title and the picture are good descriptions of the contents: a five year old girl's dream told and discussed on papa's laptop. A dream of the essence of the love between man and woman. Completely comme il faut and reasonable, at least almost, only thinly spiced with features of ephemere concepts of time and space and something else that are just essential in dreams, make this just a five year old girl's dream. A complete little masterwork!
Made me look my summary of another Alexander Sowa book I had read a couple of months ago, a love story that, too. Not only see the summary, but also open the book, for a very specific reason. These two Sowa books are both bilingual Polish with English translations. In the previous summary I had given a very harsh condemnation for Kindle's way of making available to reader the two language versions. Yes, it was exactly the same as in this dream story. I must take back about, at least, half of my harsh words and take on my account the blame of difficult use of the translation. Not at all difficult, if the secret of slide bar revealed. Hopeless to scroll the table of contents sliding on the text, but completely ok by using the slidebar.
So, end is well, all is well. I even met myself trying to subscribe newsletter on the author's site. I had done it already previous time. That time given four stars for understandable reasons. Now with great pleasure five stars with firm resolution to read several Sowa books, also bilingual, if available.
144. Book hun, summary: ajkNotes

Stendhal: Vörös és fekete*****

Reunion with an old favorit

20180516 I have read this book in 1994. Do not remember any details, but only that I liked it, which is also expressed by my 3/3 star assessment. That time I did not write notes on books. Now having read only some 20 pages, I am completely encharmed by the text, completely. Rich and colourful description of personages, surroundings and events. Encouraging feeling that I understand very well the Hungarian language, enjoying excellent Word management and Google vocabulary translation of new words and idioms for me. What a joy reading this book by Stendhal!
20180518 Very clear and easily readable text! Leads to encouraging and selfconfident thoughts about knowledge of Hungarian language! Did not expect this degree of easiness.
20180625 Greatly enjoying the supple flow of the text I gradually become aware of the fact that I do not know what is the meaning of its title 'Red and Black'. Nor the real subject matter of the book. Is it a love story or just an epope of post-Napoleon era? Answer to that question I don't get until book finished and looking some reader reviews on Amazon, my usual source for reading. The answer is: both love story and epope, and still more. Particularly, to my astonishment: an illness report, a case history! And I did not notice anything of the kind! And do not see it that way, even if notified. I feel strong temptation to rereading this book another time, now in French. I did even download it already. See what happens.
Somewhat disappointed to my lacking ability of grasping the general idea and purpose of the text I lost a part of my enthusiasm. But then towards the end a clear cut triangle drama emerged. The hero, no, not hero nor antihero, but just the main person of the book, Julien, age 23, has been fallen in love with an elder married woman and is marrying another young woman. Goes to a church and fires three shots at the elder woman, however, not killing her. He is arrested and a rumorous court trial follows. Opinions are divided, but finally the delinquent is sentenced to death. The last days of his life and contacts with the women are descripted in detail.
The book is finished with dramatic references to the two women: "Matild hosszú gyászruhában a középen térdelt és az istentisztelet végeztével több ezer ötfrancost szóratott a nép közé. De Rênal-né hű maradt igéretéhez. Semmi módon sem igyekezett megrövidíteni életét; azonban három nappal Julien után, gyermekeit átkarolva, meghalt." These two last sentences taken from the French edition: "Mathilde parut au milieu d’eux en longs vêtements de deuil, et, à la fin du service, leur fit jeter plusieurs milliers de pièces de cinq francs." and "Madame de Rênal fut fidèle à sa promesse. Elle ne chercha en aucune manière à attenter à sa vie ; mais, trois jours après Julien, elle mourut en embrassant ses enfants."
The riddle of "red and black" was revealed by the above mentioned reviewer as the two aspects of the system of government: red being colour of the revolutionary an black of the monarchist system. Even hinted, I did not grasp the alleged mainstream of psychological thriller. Two reasons for rereading and looking with different eyes.
Despite lacking understanding, five stars with some dimming of the shine.
145. Book eng, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Paul Strathern: Leibniz in an hour*****

An outrageous book of an outrageous subject

Paul Strathern - Leibniz in an hour, 94 p.
I read the book at my mentor and a classmate Viljo's recommendation. He claimed Leibniz being the greatest of all philosophers.
I am immediately prepared to recognize him as the King of philosophers. Ok, the philosophy of monads. Of course, I can not say whether it is right or wrong, and maybe I did not fully understand every turn of it, but something like this must be the ultimate explanation of all existence. Behind the material there is metaphysics, time and place can not exist, only the imagination of them. But this is not the (only) reason, why I am ready to declare Leibniz the greatest. The other is, of course, that he has invented my most important work tool, the differential and integral calculations (with or without Newton).
Then, it is still a separate thing to announce this book of Strathern as an Outrageous Work in good sense as I mean it. On the last pages of the actual story, I just got the stop remark: "Your selection exceeds the copy limit set by the Publisher of this book." It ended my all too eager making notes. I do not really blame the publisher. Almost every page I copied long clips to the clipboard. I do not know, perhaps there is a certain general percentage of the total text as the limit to be respected in all eBooks, but before this I did not come across to it. Never before so much of the text did I pick up on the clipboard. I do not know whichever is more succulent, Stratner's text, unheedingly crossing the borders of conventional, or the same kind of border-crossing ideas and action of Leibniz. At least in practical action, Leibniz heavily overwhelms my favorite Schopenhauer.
With these remarks I feel obliged to confirm my assessment with five stars.

146. Book eng, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Paul Strathern: Schopenhauer in an hour**

What a disappointment!

Inspired by Paul Strathern's excellent book 'Leibniz in an hour' I decided to read the whole long series of all the prominent philosophers in an hour, took this my favourite Schopenhauer. Started reading, being aware of the Big Brother's surveillance for not learning too much. Made more scarce notes than in Leibniz in order to reach to the end. But no way! Again the red-OK Stop mark "Your selection exceeds the copy limit set by the Publisher of this book." No more notes for my ingenious MyeBooks learning devise. What a pity! This repeated incidence means also: no more 'in an hour' books for me, just when I got accustomed to the interesting and enlightening background information style of them.

Having recently read practically all Schopenhauer's production particularly the three main works mentioned in this compendium: On the Fourfold Root of the Principle of Sufficient Reason, The World as Will and Representation and Parerga and Paralipomena I had no other idea of my favourite philosopher's private life than the famous picture of him illustrated from backside walking away with his dog. Now Paul Strathern giving in this book a very colorful picture of Arthur S as gentleman, not abstaining from the joys of the society life with culture and women. Became understandable why he wrote also on these two mondane subjects along with his all embracing subject of will and representation.

Acknowledging the sympathetic merits of the author, but deeply indignated for the publksher's attitude towards learning I cannot give but the very rare two stars as the sign of good bye for this good idea of concise caricatures of famous philosophers.

147. Book ita, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: ita

Matteo Strukul: I Medici. Una dinastia al potere****

A robust bunch for a friend of history

Fiction with historical background is my absolute favourite reading. This novel on Medici by Strukul is just that. The author is a new acquaintance for me, but reached by first stroke the highest status on my scale: ready to read another Strukul. However, not without some sneering remarks about the means by which the status is attained. First of all the very style of the text. Quite soon I noticed: this is very, very close to Ken Follett. So close that I cannot avoid asking: One of them is imitating the other, but who?. That is why I perused carefully the chapter of Ringraziamenti. No hint to Follett. Would Follett mention Strukul as his model or example? If not, a case of suppressing essential information, related to lie! Both presenting the same way of robust historical facts, just the same way led to personal, so to say, bedside level, detailed description of sexual intercourse, including tenderness and violence. An undoubted means of awakening a slumbering reader! Another sneering remark, noticed at reading the ringraziamenti: Follett missing, but if not over twohundred people mentioned then nothing. Strukul seems to be not just writer, but also a market man, securing a hosf of readers and spriders of good word about himself. A cheap, but not very good tasting way of promotion.
But all in all, a good and convincing text about the family of Medici and the time around 1450 Italy and Europe, not forgetting the two most remarkable events of that time: the Pest, epidemia, hitting so stongly to our time. I could not leave repeating in Facebook Strukul's description of the rapid spreading of the disease. The other remarkable historical event is the final separation of Rome and Byzantine beliefs, the disagreement remembered by the one word: filioque about the marching order of Father, Son and the Holy Spirit.
Greatly enjoying, in increasing order towards the end, also of the chrystal clear Italian language, but still showing the place behind Follett, four stars seems just the right assessment.
148. Book ita, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama

Matteo Strukul: I Medici. Un uomo al potere****

Leonardo (da Vinci) as a lifebuoy

Extraordinarily many standpoints to regard this Medici 2 book. Reading the first 50 pages or so, I thought: this is impossible, such a bonfire of uncommon (and superfluous) words and idioms as if the author were suffering of a feeling of inferiority and this way wanting to compensate it, showing that he is versatilely competent. Perhaps also he not knowing how to start this big report... Then gradually I lost this disturbing feeling. Next I got fed up with the high level social surrounding, far above the ordinary grass root citizen. Some five years ago I have deliberately chosen for myself the role of a simple grass root level pacifistic world citizen. Another controversy with the world of this book: endless intrigues and armed conflicts and wars. I am not interested.
Ok, what then, am I interested in? - Every day human relationships and life, its practical, historical and philosophic aspects. This my need was then gradually met when these high level people started to be described in their more intime relationships. In this respect ok the relationships of Lorenzo in his marriage and true love as well as family life and the role as the watch dog of the pope for information about the Medici and Firenze. So also the human relationship of the highest level pope and his nephew.
But what I really liked is the first hand human contact with the greatest genius of all times, Leonardo da Vinci. In my eyes he becomes the lifebuoy of this very story. Not by chance or unintended by the author. On the contrary: Leonardo is left outside all intrigues and controversies. His geniality is shown by some practical examples, in the end by his dream of the ability of man flying in the open air. This even in a fortified way: this dream being for him more important than the dream of a society and life with love and peace. I almost smiled for this author's deliberate trick presented at the end of the book. Of course, not so in general, but why not in the mind of the great genius of Leonardo. Another convincing and consequently presented aspect of Leonardo is his unquestioned trust of nature as tbe basis of life and all science.
Still to be mentioned is my topmost interest in this book as well as all ebook literary, learning of languages, not knowing, but learning; has continued almost 80 years by now. And alas! Although I made some sour remarks at the beginning of this review, I am very satisfied all over. I have noted a myriad of words, expressions and idioms. Here first time used the Kindle dictionary tag both for just very rapid looking up and the possibility of copying via clipboard text to my Notes. G-translator has always been my most important tool, now also another novelty for me: Grammarly. A completely incredible invention. Hopefully soon available also in other languages than the English.
Because of the satisfaction described in th last paragraph my assessment of this controversial book is four stars, not far of the all five.
149. Book ita, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: ita

Matteo Strukul: I Medici. Una regina al potere****

Caterina de Medici

In this third part of Strukul's Medici story, the main idea is no More the power of the family, rise into or extent of it, but the inside relationships of the family, above all, from the stand point of the Great Mother Caterina.
The author has ingeniously suceeded to describe the tragic controversy of Caterine experiencing the warmth of Love, but however being the central radiator of the warmth of Love. This is enabled by the unquestioned loyalty withou passionate scent of three important men, her husband Enrico, the king of France, Raymond de Polignac, capitano della quarta compagnia picchieri del re di Francia”, and her spiritual mentor Nostradamus, all of them being limited by their high social positions. But a decisive factor, as I see it, are the relationshps of Caterina to the two mistresses of Enrico: Diana and Lucrezia. Mutual respect is maintained by the retinent attitude of Caterina. What else could she do, as she understands it. This attitude assures to her the glorious road and position, which she enjoys to the end of her life, well worth this great story.
The best example of this balanced treatment of interpersonal relationships is the desctiption of the situation in connection with the death of the king Enrico.
For the reasons described in my reviews of the previous parts of Strukul'd Medici, mainly the social level of the topic, this third part does not quite reach five stars as my assessment, but well deserves its four stars, not forgetting my main goal, learning languages by reading ebooks with the magnicifent help of modern technology.
Deploring the continuous lack of success in transmitting my improvement suggestins to Kindle I take the liberty of attaching them here:
Severe reprimands to the editors of Zingarelli Dictionary for unability of separating the appostrophed article at the beginning of a word. Could be done either in delimiting the text in painting or at the beginning of the search. l'uccello gives 'unknown searchword'.
2. List of persons present urgently needed just as it is usual in theatre plays
3. TOC provided with page numbers in font of links.
150. Book ita, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: ita

Matteo Strukul: Decadenza di una famiglia****

Could the River Po end up to desert sand?

This flow of Medici and Italian history does. This mighty flow runs strong but never contains fresh mountain water, nor leisurely plages on its long shores. Mainly muddy sludge forwarded more by dragging intrigues than blowing fresh wind and sloping territory.
Still this last part as well as the previous three have their attraction to the reader ingeniously portioned by the author Matteo Strukul.
The taste to the soup comes partly from the soup itself, partly it is thrown from outside. Inside there are strong personalities, not only strong men like Cosimo and Lorenzo but also outstandig women in several generations like Caterina and Maria inside the family as well as several queens of the Medici men's bedrooms.
But for me the greatest impression did the author's deliberate trick of introducing into the great flow of two completely undeniable heroes of the human history. At the beginning the 15 year old Leonardo da Vinci and at the end the great painter Rubens. These two are presented as great spirits free of grass roots intrigues and questionable love affairs. They are not just mentined but woven properly into the story. Even some of da Vincis revolutionary ideas like that of human flying vehicle are presented. The whole story is finished by Maria de' Medici being in tender embrace of Master Rubens. In the Nota dell'autore the author explains the relative parts of fact and fiction in this story.
At the end of this as well as all other parts of the tetralogy there is a convincing bibliography, partly of very recent sources. But then there is also a less convincing giant list of acknowledgements, as if taken from the family guest book of years of merry home parties and funerals of a wealthy man. No wonder that the author excuses of some possible omissions and promises remedy in the next book.
For me these 1600 pages ment primarily a fresh course in Italian language with an incredibly rich vocabulary. No way of looking up all the unknown words in the Zingarelli Vocabolario della Lingua Italiana and expressions in other sources. By the way, there is a very severe, but easily correctable fault in Zingarelli: no way of looking up a word with apostrophed article 'l'autore' gives 'undefiniable searchword'. The article should be possible to separate from the word at painting the text or be separated by the dictionary at the beginning of the search.
Although reading with unwavering interest, there were several passages with overwhelming flood of text on excessive, uninteresting and seemingly irrelevant contents. My remedy is redoubling the speed of reading, not omitting text. Another serious reason for not giving all the five but only four stars is on the side of the reader or myself. As convinced pasifist I do not like wars and violence or the 'realistic' approach in general. Ken Follett clearly wins Matteo Strukul.
151. Book est, summary: ajkNotes

Anton Hansen Tammsaare: Tõde ja õigus 3****

A very gloomy story

Beginning this book I did not know and could not expect such a low toned history. In the first part of Tõde ja Õigus the general idea is independence, in my opinion. The stubborn nordic pheasant independence, unhampered by feudal bonds, as they were ruling and the case elsewhere. The spirit of the second part is getting rid of the bond to land by intensive cultivation of mind. One could, at least I could, have expected that the author would in the third part somehow show the fruits of the development in the two first parts. But no, nothing at all like that. A completely new path was opened, that of revolution, real one with its cruelest forms, as it turned out towards the end of the book. No happy end. But you can say that this has not been the free choice of the author. He certainly would have been glad to describe quite different events. But what happened was the choice of the time, turn of the big wheel of the history of mankind. The landslide of the Russian Revolution threw dirt over all good development in all parts of the giant Russian empire, Estonia and Finland included. These two got their share of bloodshedding, but then, finally, recovered from the bath and became members in the world community of independent states. But this happened only soon after the scope of this book, which ended just to the bloodshedding, of which the heroes of this book got their share. So, the path and line of this book was lower, lower, to the very bottom.

Four stars, not five because of too many dull passages of revolutionary message.
152. Book est, summary: ajkNotes

Anton Hansen Tammsaare: Tõde ja õigus 4*****

A low-toned marriage drama

From the side of the author, no bow in front of the readers. No happy end. Again, a completely new story, where only the main actor Indrek Paas is the same as in the previous three parts of Tõde ja õigus. But not even his personality is clearly inherited from the earlier parts. He turns out to be a husband without strong theatrical passions. One could, however, say that he is a loyal husband and family father. In confrontations with his wife he is able to maintain surprisingly calm position and present unexpectedly general views.
The case of wife is quite different. First of all her appearance is only weakly founded referring to the earlier life of Indrek. More or less, she seems to be dropped from the heaven. Also the story does not begin from the origin of the marriage, but there are children from the beginning. After reading the book I have no memories of tender relationship between the husband and the wife. Karin, the wife, is capricious and passionate. She is suspicious and jealous of the relationship between Indrek and Tiina, the maid of the family. At the same time she has off-marital relationshps with young and older men. Money and inherited property are a significant factor determining her attitude to her husband. Without her inherited house the husbsnd would be nothing.
Children seem to be normal children with normal feelings towards both their father and their mother, and even more close to the maid Tiina, who also is completely dedicated to her role. She has warm feelings toward the head od the family, but they never exceed the limits of decency. She speaks of some secret, but never reveals it, in spite of the housewife's stern requests. Whether this secret is connected with the master, as Karin suspects, remains unclear. Tiina's main concern is to remain in the family and not be kicked out.
And what is the outcome of this drama showing glances of colorful society life of 1920's? The low-toned cavalcade of events does not have dramatic turns neither up nor down. The general trend is slightly downd and reaches its culmination at the very end by complete reconciliation after five missed bullets shot by the husband, but then has unexpectedly an Anna Karenina end, the wife tossed to an instant death by a tram, unintended, however by the wife. It necessarily, unavoidedly leaves the reader in front of a big question: Why? - just a caprice of the author? A trick of marketing and riding on the wing of a famous master?
Four stars as all the other three parts.
153. Book eng, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Henry David Thoreau: Walden*****

No common surface?

This book has been a perplexing experience. As if I had no common surface with the author Thoreau. And however, thd book Walden is considered an important classic. Already at the very beginning I have made a note complaining
"Too high level for my understanding, kind of a thick stream of which I cannot get a grip. Reminds me of Don Gesualdo by Verga and Ulysses by Joyce. No grip of the message of these."
Verga I continued in the name of learning the Italian language. In Thoreau I do not find even this aspect as an incentive to continue. Same Cien anos by Garcia. Even Kalevala until I was struck by a Spanish prose version of it. Still a whole genre out of reach: war books, first off them the Ilias followed by Väinö Linna...
In some chapters, like 6 Visitors, some echo of souls was found between Thoreau and me...
Somewhat later: "Minute description of the nature environment. Strangely enough, does not touch me. Perhaps I have not lived in as close a contact to the nature as the author."
Finally, reading the last chaptersmof the book: "Feel necessary to switch to speed reading by overproliferous and muddle-headed wording at the finishing chapters about the nature and season change". Neither did the author's poetry through out the text convince of anything positive, on the contrary hinted to insane and rudimentary imagination of the poet.
Surprisingly sentences the gounds of his own doom in the concluding chapter. Although he means it as given to me or in general, to all his readers: "It is a ridiculous demand which England and America make, that you shall speak so that they can understand you." Who is ridiculous: he or me? Perchance (new word for me used by Th, better than the usual) we both are?
Even more astonishning after me having written the above: he really bursts out his own sentence by stating: "Sometimes we are inclined to class those who are once-and-a-half-witted with the half-witted, because we appreci appreciate only a third part of their wit."
Another failure in this book is the use of page numbers at the bottom of screens. At first, I was more than satisfied with them, because, in several reprises, I have suggested to Amazon that calculated page numbers should be uses in stead of locations as the measure of text. My suggestion: epage=2000 characters. Everything ok, until I noticed that the page number and the percentage, another welcome measure of the progress of reading, did not match! Either one or the other (or both) is wrong. Became balatantly clear at the end of the book, where the last page number continued over tens of screenfuls. This, of course is just a technical error, easily corrected at later usage.
On top of all, or sooner at the bottom: the text to be read in Kindle keeps turning out blue. Earlier only occasially. This, of course, is no fault of the book, but of the reader's brain.
At an early stage lf reading, miserable two stars seemed to be the proper assessment for this book. I hoped for more and was already ready to give three in reading the Conclusion chapter, but then, reading what was offered after that dropped the hopes completely. Even two stars seems too many.
154. Book eng, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Eckhart Tolle: The Power of Now*****

The Power of Now: A Guide to Spiritual Enlightenment

I now notice that I have read Tolle's two main books in the wrong time order. This 'Now' is about ten years older than 'A New Earth', so here are the original thoughts. Of course, they can be read independently, and they both contain the same basic ideas, but they are not replaceable by each other. The New can be seen more like consequences of the Now, a building on the fundament of this older work. It is remarkable that the original work is still valid, a kind of proof of the firmness of the original ideas.

To me it is the most fascinating idea that without me feeling to the least degree scitsofrenic I can think that there is two bodies of myself, or actually three: the physical and two spiritual bodies: the conscious mind and the real inner body. 'When thinking, the tyrant, the mind is ruling me, my real being' as Tolle says. Tolle's ideas, presented in this book, are a valuable guidance to
the recognition of the Real Me, my inner body.

According to Tolle, the Real Me is not recognized by deep thinking, but on the opposite, by stopping it, surrendering to what is, what exists. Damn the past, do not worry of the future. There is no such thing as time. Time is just an illusion. All that really happens, does it right now. So the old wisdom of the two words 'carpe diem' - 'seize the day' is the kernel of Tolle's Now. - It is just astonishing that these word are not referred to in this book. It can well be, of course, that a day is too concrete and too long unit for Tolle, in fact a unit of time, which just is completely damned.

If you are thinking any past ideas, then the mind, the conscious mindbody is using you. You are unconsciously identified with it, so you don’t even know that you are its slave. In stead you should try to reach the consciousness away from mind activity and create a gap of no-mind in which you are highly alert and aware but not thinking. This is the essence of meditation.

Says Tolle: "Ceasing to create pain in the present and dissolving past pain — this is what I want to talk about now. Here is the key: End the delusion of time. Time and mind are inseparable. Remove time from the mind and it stops — unless you choose to use it. Nothing ever happened in the past; it happened in the Now. Nothing will ever happen in the future; it will happen in the Now."

When you remember the past, you reactivate a memory trace — and you do so now. The future is an imagined Now, a projection of the mind. When the future comes, it comes as the Now. When you think about the future, you do it now.

Tolle's radical advice sounds: 'Find the "narrow gate that leads to life." It is called the Now. Die to the past every moment. You don't need it. Only refer to it when it is absolutely relevant to the present. Feel the power of this moment and the fullness of Being. Feel your presence.'

Do not turn your attention elsewhere in your search for the Truth, for it is nowhere else to be found but within your body. 'Through the inner body, you are forever one with God' says Tolle.

And how can you in concrete terms try to find your inner body and give more space to it? This is what Tolle says:
"When you are unoccupied for a few minutes, and especially last thing at night before falling asleep and first thing in the morning before getting up, "flood" your body..."
Surrender is the simple but profound wisdom of yielding to rather than opposing the flow of life. However, do not confuse surrender with an attitude of "I can't be bothered anymore" or "I just don't care anymore."...
In surrender, you no longer need ego defenses and false masks. Presence is the key. The Now is the key.
155. Book rus, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: rus

Толстой Лев Николаевич: Казаки*****

How do you distinguish classic from ordinary?

A simple answer would perhaps be: "When many people feel the same way reading a book or enjoy a piece of art in general." A deeper aspect would be considering the author's skill of getting a touch of the reader, ability to dive under the skin of the reader, arise in the reader a feeling that the author is really addressing me. That's what you feel when reading Tolstoy, even if there is a gap of more than hundred years between writing and reading. I think that the author is perhaps not deliberately addressing the reader or not having in mind the reader at all, but successfully describing his idea. That is reached by a minute description of some details like face or body or dress of a person or his or her immediate environment. That is where Tolstoy is a master.
Here the author spins a love story little by little starting from a furtive look exchanged between man and woman. Another starting point in this case is their different nationalities: Russian and Caucasian. This fact becomes decisive even if the Russian sincerely and by all means tries to ignore and diminish this gap. Maryana is and does not want to be other than Caucasian Cossack. Olenin is and remains Russian inpite of how hard he tries to dress himself to his changed environment. In Olenin the furtive glance develops to a fiery passion, in Maryana only to a smile and laugh. Even if the habit is that parents give the girl to the groom and the girl has actually nothing against the suave lover, the end result here is a complete disruption. Olenin is obliged to leave the scene defeated. The final stick breaking the back of the camel is not his action, but the action of his compatriotes, killing of of a Caucasian by a Russian military unit. It has been known as an unimportant background event during all or large part of the story, but becomes decisive abruptly at the last pages of the text. Stop, end and Amen.
Who could else than agree with this solution! I at least not. Many others the same way. This is what makes classic and master work of this Kosaki by Tolstoy. Easily readable, although containing a myriade of words and expressions unknown to the Google Translator or to any other Dictionary offered by the Web. Five stars, although actually four would also not be unjustified. This, however, is not one of the greatest classics by Tolstoy.
156. Book ger, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Treitschke Heinrich von: Deutsche Geschichte des 19. Jahrhunderts - 1. Teil****

Tidbit of German history

This review is from: Deutsche Geschichte des 19. JahrhundertsErster Band (German Edition) (Kindle Edition)
Amazon has published in two volumes interesting episodes of German history from 19th century, the time of emergence of national states out of provincial ones. About the same time similar development took place also in Italy, although in quite different way: in Germany peacefully, in Italy by Garibaldi as a result of a triumph of a warfare cavalcade.
These two German volumes have an exceptionally strong personal stamp of the author Heinrich von Treitschke, grand old man of German history. No less grand is the author of the foreword Wilhelm Mommsen, who guarantees Treitschke's personal approach by the words: "man liest Treitschke um Treitschkes willen, nicht wegen der Sache." Treitschke is read because of Treitschke, not because of the subject matter.
And, in deed, fresh and pinching are many of his observations and expressions, like for example about the important Vienna Conference as a country fair where cattle sellers and buyers meet: »Der gute Wiener Kongreß gleicht einem Jahrmarkt in einer kleinen Stadt, wo ein jeder sein Vieh hintreibt, es zu verkaufen oder zu vertauschen.«
Descriptive of the need of union is the observation that "in Posen und Pommern mußten 48, in den Provinzen links der Elbe 71 fremde Geldsorten amtlich anerkannt und tarifiert werden". The road from this multitude of currencies to one German mark, not to speak of the present day euro in almost all Europe is very long.
Not only the inside structure of the German territory, but also more general considerations as the changes of the market conditions along the ideas of "Freihandelsreden des großen Briten", that is of Adam Smith, the great defender of market forces. No complete union of German speaking nations was reached, not even unanimously aimed at. The Prussian and Austrian parts existed and remained.
157. Book ger, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

: eutsche Geschichte des 19. Jahrhunderts, 2. Teil****

Emerging industry and Zollverein

This review is from,h,Deutsche Geschichte des 19. Jahrhunderts Zweiter Band (German Edition) (Kindle Edition)
These are the main themes or the second volume of Heinrich von Treitschke's Deutsche Geschichte des 19. Jahrhunderts.
Of course, the general building of political coherence, union of provincial states to a national state, also continues. In this respect there is an interesting modest starting point stated in one passage from that time,h,'a lot of water will flow in the Rhine until we can speak of our country with the proudness that has always been so characteristic for the British and the French.'
Although in no way emphasized in the table of contents, there is a very interesting grass root level report of the emergence of the national railway net and along with it a whole new social layer of engineering population and industrial entrepreneurship. As the very first step there is a note of how the first mile from Nuremberg to Furth was covered in 15 minutes on the railway, whereas it took 25 minutes with horse bag. ...and further how 'mature aged ladies' took pins between teeth to defend themselves against too eager young men rushing around and stealing kisses when the train passed an one minute tunnel. Serious drawbacks to boat trafic were calculated from the part of the competing rail traffic.
Then there was the magic Customs Union or Zollverein from 1834. Magic you can call it, because no clear leadership can be shown under which this first result of the union of German provincial states was born. An yet it was born as opposed to the two superpowers of the world history,h,'die Mächte der Dummheit und der Sünde' (stupidity and sin) as says the historian Treitschke. The foundation of the Zollverein is mentioned to have been the first instance in history in which independent states had consummated a full economic union without the simultaneous creation of a political federation or union. As such a long leap from the pessimistic description of the passage cited at the beginning.
158. Book rus, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: rus

Антон Павлович Чехов: Рассказы. Повести. 1888— 1891****

May you be disappointed with Chekhov?

First 90 pages I was very disappointed, then I found Chehov.
But according to my notes 20181217 p 91 = 17% I have decided to interrupt reading this and reread another Russian book, continuing Chekhov after nine months of pause in 20190913 p 103 = 20%. page 250: Скучная история
Everything else than dull! description of my own life as college teacher.
But then again, back to the famous Chekhov atmosphere, so well known, unimitable and beloved from his great theater pieces. I almost feel ashamed not being enthusted of it when reading. Should I be more disappointed to myself than to Chekhov? Is it true, or do I see 'new clothes of the czar'? - uneven quality of the text. Somewhere high quality, elsewhere low. Do not the giants of the goose feather constantly produce first class? Perhaps not all, perhaps not always. Perhaps even Chekhov not always. I have in mind even other cases. Foremost a recent Nobelist Orhan Pamuk: splendid pre-Nobel My name is red and post-Nobel kiosk-level Museum of innocence, a hastily produced phrase collection. But Chekhov had no Nobel mind-boosters, but a serious lung disease driving him from place to place to have a better air for breathing. No hope, died prematurely. Qjality stable or uneven, this collection of short stories has given me an uncommon lot of trouble, well seen in the length of my notes, unknown words and idioms. Luckily we have the convenience of ebook. Easy to use dictionary and the clipboard convey text to notes.
All in all, satisfactory reading and learning, just missing the highest rank of assessment stars, four of five, however. (ajk)
159. Book eng, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Gilad E. Tsur Mayer: HTML****

Gilad win

I have had my own HTML Short course, but not quite as Short as this. Neither is it very much longer. I promise full mastery with two weeks exercise. I am not selling my course, just providing it as appendice to my friends. Have had it at least ten years. Nobody has ever done it. Cannot understand why. Hard to imagine more useful and easier.
I must confess: Gilad wins, both in shortness and particularly in jokes!
Four stars, almost five, to Gilad. Mine would also deserve four.
160. Book eng, summary: ajkNotes

James Tudor: Basics Of Python Programming*

Complete Abracadabra

Is this to be taken seriously, or is it a practical joke for compete fools? After more Than 60 years of daily programming in FORTRAN, Basic and Delphi and now HTML I feel myself fooled and completely deceived. Cannot imagine of learning this. Cannot either imagine of sending this "review" to Amazon az I usually do. Good bye Python!
Tudor, James. Python Programming For Beginners: Learn The Basics Of Python Programming (Python Crash Course, Programming for Dummies) (p. 5). Kindle Edition.
Tudor, James. Python Programming For Beginners: Learn The Basics Of Python Programming (Python Crash Course, Programming for Dummies) (p. 5). Kindle Edition.
Tudor, James. Python Programming For Beginners: Learn The Basics Of Python Programming (Python Crash Course, Programming for Dummies) (pp. 4-5). Kindle Edition.
Tudor, James. Python Programming For Beginners: Learn The Basics Of Python Programming (Python Crash Course, Programming for Dummies) (p. 4). Kindle Edition.
Tudor, James. Python Programming For Beginners: Learn The Basics Of Python Programming (Python Crash Course, Programming for Dummies) (p. 4). Kindle Edition.
Tudor, James. Python Programming For Beginners: Learn The Basics Of Python Programming (Python Crash Course, Programming for Dummies) (p. 3). Kindle Edition.
Tudor, James. Python Programming For Beginners: Learn The Basics Of Python Programming (Python Crash Course, Programming for Dummies) (p. 3). Kindle Edition.
Tudor, James. Python Programming For Beginners: Learn The Basics Of Python Programming (Python Crash Course, Programming for Dummies) (p. 3). Kindle Edition.
Tudor, James. Python Programming For Beginners: Learn The Basics Of Python Programming (Python Crash Course, Programming for Dummies) (p. 1). Kindle Edition.

161. Book spa, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: spa

Ibn Tufayl: El filósofo autodidacta****

How animal turned to human being

Perhaps the most hilarious book of the year. We are frequently reminded of our descendency from apes. In Ibn Tufayl's book 'El filósofo autodidacta' it is meticulously described step by step. This book is published in one of Amazon's series of the books you must read before dying, excellent in helping you to choose good reading. Once more confirmed.
A strange peculiarity of the book is that various (paper dry) prefaces from its lifetime of some 600 years comprise more than half of the volume. In them the contents of the book is told several times, but the actual text, when you finally come to it, appears fresh new as the morning dew! Many laughs and somersaults of brainwork are guaranteed. Things are explained from the very primitive body movements to the world embracing, more than that, God honouring acts of man. One of the best being the author's excuse at the end for not seeing the book worth publishing. Luckily the afterworld has seen its value to the benefit of us, all millions of the Amazon readers among others.
Five stars par excellence!
162. Book eng, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Arvo Tuominen: Vladimir Putin: The Whole Story*****

A completely tremendous book

History, documentary, handbook, textbook, entertaining litterary masterpiece, perspicacious satire behind a cape of harmless chat, whatever by Arvo Tuominen! One cannot but pay attention also to extraordinary good and nailhead hitting translation from Finnish into English by Timothy Binham. Pretty sure this will be my book of the year. I can only admire and congratulate Tuominen for having succeded to include such big amount of first hand information even for me as a global grassroot pacifist along with profound top level hard core world politics of war and peace. Despite all bold comparisons of the three big and cruel Vladimirs (Saint, Lenin, Putin), Putin becomes and appears as a lot more human person than we get him through the daily troll. This book should be, and certainly will be translated also into Russian, even more important than in English. The Finnish version should be included in any World view education courses. A 30-40 page abbreviation would be welcome to common hand on both sides of our eastern border.
Without going to the endles delicious details of the text I can only recommend it and put my mark of full five stars on it.
163. Book dan, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

J. L. Ussing: Af mit Levned*****

Educated memoirs

This book I took with so to say, 'thin motivation' to my reading program, just to have another language in my collection. But soon enough it turned out that the book would be a grain of gold as a model for my own memoirs. Not only as a skeleton of subjects to be handled, but also as the spirit of approach to the matter. Even I have got an academic lifelong background, even if by far not as glorious as the author of this book Johan Louis Ussing (1820-1905). And my daughters are pressing me to write memoirs as soon as possible. Then it turned out that these my personal points of motivation remained in the background and the story itself became preponderant. A piece of Danish history, of Scandinavian history with a pinch of history of Finland, even if then Autonomous Grand Duchy belongin to the Russian Empire. But above all this book is a piece of general cultural history from the point of view of humanitarian sciences.

At first I was astonished of the geat emphasis given to Greek and Latin, predominantly Geek language during the latter half of 19th century. It seems that these dead languages had the undisputed position of lingua franca as the language of academic life as it today belongs to the English language. In this book there are unashamed quotations, luckily short only, written in Greek, the ancient Greek, as I undestood. Being an amateur linguist myself, I have no touch point, not to speak of surface with these languages. No idea of how do relate the Ancient and Modern Greek. Does one understand the other by the mere knowledge of the other, as I understand Danish on the basis of my fluent Swedish?

Still to be mentioned as the subject matters of this book are material proofs of the Ancient culture, as the root of our present. That is: the statues and lithographs on the spot. Particularly at the beginning of his Academic career J.L. Ushing made several trips and stayed longer periods in Greekland and Italy. Notorious things at that time as is common tourism today. At a Christmas celebration in Rome the famous Finnish sculptor Walther Runeberg is mentioned. I just saw in my foto collection the picture of his grave stone in the Protestant Graveyard of Rome, where also my compatriot and alleged relative, the second most famous Finnish sculptor Johannes Takanen is enterred. Vita e lavori

This book deserves all five stars from the point of view of my personal connections, otherwise even four would do.
164. Book ita, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: ita

Giovanni Verga: Mastro-Don Gesualdo**

Did not inspire

If I had remembered or had looked at my notes finding that I had give sheer zero as an assessment for Verga's other book I Malavoglia in 1989, I would probably not have started this book at all. Once started I decided to continue in the name of language exercise. But also in that respect this was a disappointment. In no other book so many words unknown by the Google interpreter as in this.
I can only compare this book with another classic work that for me, however, was a disappointment, that is Ulysses by Joyce. Both appear to me as exercises of snobistisena with styles: one chapter straightforward comprehensible, another so far from normal everyday talk, or perhaps just that, but too far only from the present reader that it arose indignation instead of sympathy towards the author.
The hero, Mastro-Don Don Gesualdo, is not presented as a usual sympathetic hero, but an antiparticle egoist having just moved to collect money andd property at the cost of the community. He knows, as all others in this story, the price of everything. I cannot say the usual "but not the value of anything", because the price concerns nifty trifles that have no real values. Only a chapter concerning a fire in the neighbourhood, could dissemination my interest. The general line in this book is the clash of social classes. But this clash is clash is not one between big parties of haves and have-nots, often Don Gesualdo being alone the other part. This indefinite and incomplete class contrast is well described in the long litterari introduction at the beginning of the book by this quotation: "Verga, che pur non ha mai avuto idee politiche ben definite, ma si era dimostrato sensibile alla causa degli umili, approva la repressione delle proteste sindacali dei Fasci siciliani del governo Crispi, segno di un’involuzione conservatrice. Questa si accompagna a un pessimismo crescente: lo scrittore considera infatti l’economia parafeudale del Mezzogiorno ottocentesco come una realtà immodificabile. In questa ottica di progressiva chiusura verso le idee liberali."
So in sum, my assessment is two stars out of five, zero being reserved for indignant interruptions and one for some fraudulent approach, rare but not completely unseen.
165. Book hun, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: fra

Jules Verne: L'étonnante aventure de la mission Barsac (French Edition). BoD. Kindle Edition.*****

My fifteenth and sixteenth Verne

Easy guessing that I like Verne. Only once given less than the maximum number of stars. Became curious: why? Checking my records it turns out that there is an error. Even in that case, L'île mysterieuse, I have emphatically founded giving five stars, only forgot to correct the figure in the my statistics.
Except of the precise contents I could very well cite the general assessment of the book mentioned in this case too. I have read the other book some three years ago and with great enthusiasm described general features of the book and the author. The same words would do even now. Also another feature. That time, just as this time I have read the book in two languages parallelly: in French and in Hungarian as I some times do in the purpose of learning the language, actually the two of them, of course. Language learning has always been my favorite hobby and purpose in reading, more important than just entertainment. Chapter by chapter, first the stronger, then the weaker language. Strongly recommendable to anybody learning languages.
Now what are the strongholds of Jules Verne, this founder of the whole genre of scifi, as it is mentioned? Easy guessing: boundless imagination and sticking really to the significance of the science in everyday life. Even if pure imagination, the limit to the reality is in Verne so uncertain that it arouses in the reader the inevitable question and doubt: what, after all, if it is true? In one of the earliest Verne books, there was an event where somebody rided on an ostrich in Sahara. Still today I am askin myself: Is that possible or not. I guess that a look at Google would quickly solve that riddle. But I am not sure, whether I really would like it solved. Perhaps I like it more in Verne way. The same in the present book. Already 150 years ago Verne used a vety modern means of transport, known only during the past ten years or so: drone! He did not call it drone, but somefhing else but used and behaving just as the present drone. The whole society and its concrete establishment in this book in the middle of the desert in Niger arises questions in the mind of the reader. That is the whole secret of Jules Verne.
No question of less than five stars. Not, however, I am ready to go as far as my coreviewer of the Mysterious in the Hungarian book pages. There was the short statement: "The best book in my life".
166. Book hun, summary: ajkNotes, available: mek, review: hun

Jules Verne: A Barsac-expedíció különös története*****

My fifteenth and sixteenth Verne

Easy guessing that I like Verne. Only once given less than the maximum number of stars. Became curious: why? Checking my records it turns out that there is an error. Even in that case, L'île mysterieuse, I have emphatically founded giving five stars, only forgot to correct the figure in the my statistics.
Except of the precise contents I could very well cite the general assessment of the book mentioned in this case too. I have read the other book some three years ago and with great enthusiasm described general features of the book and the author. The same words would do even now. Also another feature. That time, just as this time I have read the book in two languages parallelly: in French and in Hungarian as I some times do in the purpose of learning the language, actually the two of them, of course. Language learning has always been my favorite hobby and purpose in reading, more important than just entertainment. Chapter by chapter, first the stronger, then the weaker language. Strongly recommendable to anybody learning languages.
Now what are the strongholds of Jules Verne, this founder of the whole genre of scifi, as it is mentioned? Easy guessing: boundless imagination and sticking really to the significance of the science in everyday life. Even if pure imagination, the limit to the reality is in Verne so uncertain that it arouses in the reader the inevitable question and doubt: what, after all, if it is true? In one of the earliest Verne books, there was an event where somebody rided on an ostrich in Sahara. Still today I am askin myself: Is that possible or not. I guess that a look at Google would quickly solve that riddle. But I am not sure, whether I really would like it solved. Perhaps I like it more in Verne way. The same in the present book. Already 150 years ago Verne used a vety modern means of transport, known only during the past ten years or so: drone! He did not call it drone, but somefhing else but used and behaving just as the present drone. The whole society and its concrete establishment in this book in the middle of the desert in Niger arises questions in the mind of the reader. That is the whole secret of Jules Verne.
No question of less than five stars. Not, however, I am ready to go as far as my coreviewer of the Mysterious in the Hungarian book pages. There was the short statement: "The best book in my life".
167. Book fra, summary: ajkNotes

Jules Verne: L'île Mystérieuse****

Sci-fi 150 years ago

Have never read modern sci-fi. According to my prejudicial mind it is something inhuman and mechanical. Quite different is this text of Jules Verne, the father of this entire genre. It emerges from the very skin of man, every day experience and ideas. This L'ile mysterieuse is no exception.
Five men, voyagers of a ballon crash on an inhabited South Sea Isle, not marked on any map. Had to throw away all their belongings as ballast before landing. Only a clock remained unnoticed in a pocket. This way a Robinson Crusoekind of zero start of the story is guaranteed.
But these four men and one teen age boy did not fall into desperation, no such thing along the whole story. Instead, in four years, they build a complete good world for themselves. Nothing necessary in practical everyday life was missing. Fire, household utensils, guns and powder for hunting, clothing, means of movement, communication such as lift and telegraph, even electricity.
One of the men is a genius, master of all discoveries of science up to 1860, an ingenious practical mind. Whatever was needed, he could give instructions, how to create. Only not the final means to return to the outer world. Or even that, but the forces of nature did not allow the fulfilment of the dreams of return. The help had to come from outside, and it came, but only at the only desperate moment of the whole adventure, just the moment before the hunger death of men lying on bare rock of a few square feet after the island had vanished in an eruption of a vulcano.
This is the sci-fi of my taste. But this book did for me still a quite different service, even more important than this kind of mind gymnastics. I realized my old idea of reading the book in two languages parallelly. This time French and Hungarian. I have always done that. Even started a new language this way. But this time I did it in a slightly different manner compared to earlier. There are reasonable alternatives. If you are just beginning a new language, you like to read by sentences or paragraphs, as I have done before. This time knowing both languages, but French better than Hungarian, I red by chapters. And I ended up reading first French, then Hungarian. This way reading and understanding all I greatly enjoyed the Hungarian text and knew the meaning of many new words and idioms. A very valuable experience, recommendable to all learners of languages.
No doubt of the number of stars for this sample of works of a great master of words an ideas Jules Verne: Five stars the only possible alternative!
168. Book hun, summary: ajkNotes

Jules Verne: Nemo Kapitany*****


A real masterpiece! Worth all imaginable superlatives. Somewhere I learned that this Verne's book is the most sold French book translated to other languages. No wonder.
I have read this book 1989 in French, now in Hungarian. It has been the best possible means for returning to this difficult language. During the last twenty years I have read more pages in Hungarian than in any other language, including Finnish, during the last fifty years for which I have recorded all my reading. Why is Hungarian so difficult? I really do not know. An easily recognizable relative to the Finnish.
To learn Hungarian I have used time and money far more than to learn any other language. Trips to Hungary, six times a whole week all day training in speaking. Of course, I understand an can express myself in Hungarian, but still I am better in 8 or 9 languages than in Hungarian. I have invented a measure for knowledge of languages: word lookups per hundred pages of text. According to that measure Hungarian is my weakest language: about 70 against two in German, 4 in English, 10 in French and 30 in Russian. Of course, eagerness to learn adds to the frequency, but by far does not explain the whole difference.
Be as it is, I am truly happy to have renewed my contact with Hungarian in ebooks after three year pause having completely abandoned paper books. Luckily there are more than thousand ebooks available free as this Verne. And the quite excellent Word Android reader, far better than Kindle, although even that ten times better than paper book.
No question of giving less than the full five stars to this book.
169. Book hun, summary: ajkNotes

Jules Verne: A rejtelmes sziget*****

Sci-fi 150 years ago

Have never read modern sci-fi. According to my prejudicial mind it is something inhuman and mechanical. Quite different is this text of Jules Verne, the father of this entire genre. It emerges from the very skin of man, every day experience and ideas. This L'ile mysterieuse is no exception.
Five men, voyagers of a ballon crash on an inhabited South Sea Isle, not marked on any map. Had to throw away all their belongings as ballast before landing. Only a clock remained unnoticed in a pocket. This way a Robinson Crusoekind of zero start of the story is guaranteed.
But these four men and one teen age boy did not fall into desperation, no such thing along the whole story. Instead, in four years, they build a complete good world for themselves. Nothing necessary in practical everyday life was missing. Fire, household utensils, guns and powder for hunting, clothing, means of movement, communication such as lift and telegraph, even electricity.
One of the men is a genius, master of all discoveries of science up to 1860, an ingenious practical mind. Whatever was needed, he could give instructions, how to create. Only not the final means to return to the outer world. Or even that, but the forces of nature did not allow the fulfilment of the dreams of return. The help had to come from outside, and it came, but only at the only desperate moment of the whole adventure, just the moment before the hunger death of men lying on bare rock of a few square feet after the island had vanished in an eruption of a vulcano.
This is the sci-fi of my taste. But this book did for me still a quite different service, even more important than this kind of mind gymnastics. I realized my old idea of reading the book in two languages parallelly. This time French and Hungarian. I have always done that. Even started a new language this way. But this time I did it in a slightly different manner compared to earlier. There are reasonable alternatives. If you are just beginning a new language, you like to read by sentences or paragraphs, as I have done before. This time knowing both languages, but French better than Hungarian, I red by chapters. And I ended up reading first French, then Hungarian. This way reading and understanding all I greatly enjoyed the Hungarian text and knew the meaning of many new words and idioms. A very valuable experience, recommendable to all learners of languages.
No doubt of the number of stars for this sample of works of a great master of words an ideas Jules Verne: Five stars the only possible alternative!

170. Book hun, summary: ajkNotes, available: hun, review: hun

Jules Verne: Kétévi vakáció*****

Another South Sea Adventure

Having just read one South Sea adventure by Jules Verne, A rejtelmes sziget (A mysterieuse island) I was curious to see another. Verne is ingenious enough to produce two of the same kind with many common features, but at the same time with enough differences to raise the interest of the reader. In the Mysterious there are four men with incredible technical knowledge and skills to create a perfect modern homestead for happy living. Here there are fifteen children, some even less than ten years old. The children come to the island shipwrecked, the men by a crashed balloon. The men develop their world practically from scratch having bought with them only a clock in the pocket. Children have it easier with versatile provision of the wrecked ship. Both end up organising their home in a cavern, garden for vegetables, closure for domestic animal, hunting and fishing for wild animal food. Nothing seems to be missing from the table. Both teams search information about the surrounding, near and far having in mind the chance of escaping back to the common world. This means navigable ship building for a long trip. Both have dangerous enemies in form of wild animals and also of wicked men. With good luck and mysterious he!p by an invisible hand in the case of the four and mysteriously popping up 'step mother' and 'step father' for children both teams end up to sea voyage back to civilized world.
In my case both books served both for pleasant entertaining by a favourite author and for learning of the Hungarian language, the most difficult among my several. For both purposes both books deserve all five stars for their services.
171. Book fra, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

Voltaire: L'Ingénu***

L'Ingénu (French Edition)

5.0 out of 5 stars What an exercise in plain philosophy!, November 7, 2013
This review is from: L'Ingénu (French Edition) (Kindle Edition)
Here Voltaire demonstrates the power of an innocent mind. Huron, l'Ingenu - Innocent is here really an Indian, a child of nature without any formal education, but with a born perspicacy of mind. He is torn of his natural surroundings, and develops in months the purest virtues of human life. This in spite of languishing in a gaoul in France. Counterpoised to this simple mind are the length of fifty centuries of Chinese culture and source of all evil emanating of the Saint Catholic Church.
Present is also a love story, in which the female honor is given as the price and sacrifice for the liberty of the beloved prisoner. Also the love story is not any love story, although extremely vigorous as such also. The imprisoned innocent shares the fate with an old man of dissident religious belief. Follows a process of mutual firm friendship and learning.
The strong story ends tragically with the death of the young woman, unable to bear the heavy burden of payment. All others survive.
This masterpiece of Voltaire deserves its five stars by the clarity of story and the exitement it causes in readers' mind by the plain simplicity of its philosophy.
172. Book ger, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: ger

Karl Vorländer: Volkstümliche Geschichte der Philosophie*****

A complete course in philosophy

Volkstümliche Geschichte der Philosophie by Karl Vorländer is an extremely well-organized and balanced presentation of the whole history of philosophy until the end othe 19th century.
It corresponds a whole series of propedeutic lectures. To this work comparable is from pedagocic point of view, in my opinion, only the Complete lectures in Russian history by Platonov. This, in size innocent appearing book contains material for even more than one academic lecture series. A division in three also is automatically provided as the contents is split into Antique, Medieval and Modern eras. The author has really succeeded in his aim of popularization by deliberately easing the language, expressed already in the title by the epitet 'volkstümlich'. The text and argumentation are easily flowing and understandable from the beginning to the end, all the 309 pages. Despite this, it soon turns out that it is impossible, at least in my case, to learn everthing by one reading, just out of the richness of the details, however well organized, grounded and presented. Illustrative is the fact that my notes at reading this book comprise some 750 lines in stead of an average of hundred or so from a book of this size. It is most probable that to this title will several times be referred in the future.
From the point of view of easy accessibility, this book of Volländer is also up to now the best Amazon arrangement for reading. Links to dynamic table of contens are nicely available below every part and chapter titles and to my topmost satisfaction: page numbers are used in stead of the clumsy, long and abstract locations.
Only page numbers in menus and timestamps in bookmarks are still missing. They would be most helpful for notes, not only for me but also to 'millions of' Amazon readers all over the World. I am confident that sooner or later... MyeBooks and AbcMyeBooks
Without the least hesitation: five stars.
173. Book ger, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: ger

Karl Vorländer: Immanuel Kant - Der Mann und das Werk*****

Kant, a giant of mind and reason

The biography is long and thorough, but informative, very well written. You need not be a philosopher to enjoy the colorful twists of this book.

First of all, I must praise one formal feature of this book, the perfect structuration and the table of contents. It exceeds my boldest expectations. They speak of German profoundness, this is a good sample of it. Did I count 24 screenfuls, some ten normal pages of the table of contens, none too many for a book of 650 pages!
Nonetheless, I have a serious remark to make: Where are the (calculated) page numbers? This is, of course, not a claim to the author, but a very serious one to my beloved Kindle. Page numbers are not only for finding pages, but at least as much for grasping the structure and proportions of the text, giving to me the idea where and how far I am in the text.

The fourth chapter Der alte Kant turns out to be for me the most interesting part of the book. Here Kant's relationship to religion is treated. As I understand it, it is, least to say, very radical. And the reaction to it from the part of the public and organized society accordingly harsh. As a matter of fact, I would have expected that it were even more severe, a complete ostrachiszmozing and lynching. Kant is, if not speaking of his own personal convictions, at least speculating of the possibilities of completely crushing the fundaments of religion. According to Kant the religion cannot be based on divine announcement, not even be given from outside at all, but grown inside the man. Even God is a necessary ideal beyond the limit of human reason. Away with Holy Trinity, Jesus being born by virginal conception, but the Bible being contrived by human sources. Or did I misunderstand the message? Too much assimilated to my own presuppositions and beliefs.

Already long time I have modified the conception of Bible being a result of divine inspiration by my sarcasm of it as being sooner a inspired by the Sprit of the bottle at the meetings of high clerical authorities. Not at all that I woud deny the authority of Bible. I see it as a collection of all good human advise collected along its millennial history of birth. Without being able of mentioning concrete examples I have the feeling that there is in some context a good advise on everything and in another context a counteradvise, just as there are mutually contrary proverbs for everything in the folklore.

According to Kant, religion should be, and is, based on moral grounds for everyday personal practical use, not just for lip service in holy places by privileged worshippers. This requirement of compatibility with everyman's daily life had been the main claim of protestant Lutheran reformation, solid and the only admissible background of the society where Kant himself was living. Would it not be too far drawn supposition that this layman point of view saved Kant from more severe consequences of his controversial doctrines? As a matter of fact, proper concept of religion is according to Kant completely consistent with his philosophical concept of practical reason. A few years ago, following the media discussion about the controversy of creationism and evolutionism, I bounced to an evolutionist's opinion how conscience has developed precisely in accordance of Darwin's idea of strugling for survival. So, God's voice in man is compatible with evolution, maybe some day originally created by God, but also very well understood in terms of evolution, just as technical development. Good advise and profitable invention are never forgotten.

Considering the heavyweight nature of this extensive text I can not but cite (with location markings) some of the most remarkable statements characterizing Kant's relationship to matters of religion.
After this excellent biography I feel obliged to restart with new eyes a fresh look at Immanuel Kant, Gesammelte Werke, although having already read the main components of them. Interesting to see what I get out of it. In particular, compared to Schopenhauer, which I am utterly enthralled, even if to all depths of them I can not dive. Even less can I expect of Kant. Behind my back I do not only have this biography, but also Schopenhauer's full respect for Kant. He does not distribute it too liberally to university philosophers!

There is no other alternative but five stars for this instructive deep diving biography book.

174. Book hol, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

John Williams: Stoner*****

Just written my own Stoner

This excellent book is full of coincidenses with my own life. This is, of course, true with many, if not most other readers. Particularly, of course, with people having formally similar careers with Stoner, as myself, in the academic world. There are so many heart-warming similarities that on these grounds already, this book will become a favorite for so many.

Although not done so, this book could be written as memoirs of the author (which it quite obviously is). I have quite recently written my own memoirs, about the same length as this Stoner. I did my life work as an academic lecturer just like Stoner. I was born as farmer's son like Soner. So , obviously, many, many incidents on my career are similar with Stoner's. The main line of his work was lecturing and teaching, so also mine. Only our fields of specilization were different, his ancient litterature, mine economics. But deciding on the prevalences he seems to have had only thin contact with science, so did I. Stoner shows his contact with science by frequent mentioning of books and articles, of reading them, referring to them in his exams, but not going to the scientific aspects of them. I feel likewise myself more artist than man of science. Stoner had his share of administrative work, I had none not having the rank of professor but just a lecturer.

With two daughters and six grandchildren I had very much richer family life than Stoner with his one child and one grandchild. I think that I know why Stoner was not written in the first person as the autobiography. It is not convenient to write of ones own marital sidesteps. Stoner found them, as certainly many readers do, so beautiful, dear and finally innocent, that he did not want to leave them out. Two alternatives in this respect exist. One of them completely prevents writing the memoirs. As a friend of my said hearing that I was writing memoirs: 'The whole of it would be a bunch of lies'. The other is to leavs them out and still another not having had them.

Finally I want to emphasize that this book is masterly analyzed and reviewed in the epilogue by John McGahern. Why did I read it in Dutch? It is my hobby: reading books in languages which I have learned properly and in related which I only understand, Dutch being one of the latter. No difficylty whatsoever as is easily seen in my notes in MyeBooks, an excellent means for language learning. Five stars by excellence.
Just written my own Stoner

175. Book eng, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: eng

William D. Willis: The History of United States:***

Just the right amount of information

.. in correct order and emphasis, but in a completely incomprehensible disguise of rubrication. Did not find any hierarcy of headings under 8 chapters, although several sizes and boldness of fonts.
Already in the first chapter it turned out that the discovery of America has been a more versatile business than that of Leif Eriksson and Christoffer Columbus. Another interesting feature of this book are the many maps illustrating the gradual composition of the final result as the USA is today. Involved were not only surrounding old colonial governments but also several Indian territories. And not always new acquisitions were materialized through battles by armed forces but also by peaceful means of negotiations and trade. I knew only about the Alaskan affair with the Russian empire. Who knows what would have happened without this affair? Then the emergence of the Union reconciling the many different interests and constitutions of ever increasing number of individual states. Same kind of integration processes are known both before and after the American in e.g. Germany, Italy and now recently in the emergency of the European Union. The treatment of the slavery turned out as a bigger and more painful matter than could be expected with a background of racially unilateral society. American participation in the world wide wars, instead, is a more familiar matter here in the neighborhood of big Russia.
All in all, this Willis history is a very welcome pack of education and does not remain the last in this kind for me. Have already subscribed some other of this kind. I cannot deny all five stars in spite of the structural weaknesses, allieved, however by fresh aspects of eyewitness testimonies and educational speculation of alternative possibilities.
176. Book spa, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: spa

Hadir Nazar Zaidi: Una breve historia de Islam****

An informative book

Western media news today are not very favorable to islam. In fact, they favor hostility and bad news about musulman terrorism here and disorder in musulman countries. Therefore a matter of fact information like this Nazir Hasan Zaidi's A Short History of Islam is more than welcome.

The author narrates in a sympathetic way the origins of the religion and its path to the present day. At the beginning it is surprisingly, at least to me, in a way, a family matter, because the founder Mohammad is described as an ordinary young family member and also othervise the wide family participates and is honoured as activists in this religious movement. Then, because of harsh environment, the aspect of battle, even ferociojs, becomes important.

Another surprising thing is described towards tte end of the story: we may think that islam is a unanimous and coherent movement in the midst of a hostile world. But according to the author, it is not so. On the contrary, there is no central leadership or organization. Not even all-embracing media of information, as becomes clear when the author mentions the magazines Life and Time as examples to be envied.

For a genaral reader like myself, this book, even if only 100 pages, contains an unsurmountable quantity of names, places and events. Just introducing to my ebook notes a list of names of persons appearing in the text, I become desperate and cannot systematize them rationally, not to speak of picking them all and with proper descrition of their significance. However, the topmost feeling is that the author has succeeded in what he puts as his goal at the beginning: to tell the story based on facts in proper manner of tradition followed in works of history.

Four stars seems to be just and proper assessment of this book.
177. Book rus, summary: ajkNotes, available: ama, review: rus

М. М. Зощенко: Аристогратка*****

What a nice little book!

Kindle has already long time suggested this book Aristokratka for me as suitable next reading. Finally I took it and do not regret. I thought that it would be somehow sexually biased story written by a woman. Not at all that this would have been a reason not to choose the book. Sooner on the contrary. Nor because of sexual bias, but because of the story of woman written by a woman, because of their rarity. The Ukrainian form of the author's family name does not reveal whether it is she or he. As far as I observed correct it is he. And the story has a sexual bias, but just in the right way, very pleasant way. It is a collection of short stories, some very short and in each of them there is a woman hero, in a way or other. The main thing is, however, that the over all spirit of this book is so positive and optimistic. No groom features, no overdosed fantasy either, but everyday lifeglad realism, at least it could be.
As a good example of it, there is a story by the title СЕРДЦА ТРЕХ, the story of three happy hearts. In this story one man and two women are concerned. Without revealing the very credible details, not even remembering them exactly, a woman appears into the life of a married couple. But instead of a jealousy tragedy there is a harmonious friendship story. Whether it is true or invented, it is so neatly told that you can only accept it as true or at least possible.
All short stories in this book are told in a straightforward simple way, very pleasant to follow. No wonder, five stars is my only possible assessment.