Book Recommendations / by Deborah Clague


Zen in the Art of Writing
Written by Ray Bradbury

Writing is my favourite hobby. This blog was started about a decade ago just to give me a place to share my travels and photography. Since then I've experienced much growth and now utilize this space on the web as a means to articulate and record all facets of my life, good or bad. While this has provided much practice, I do want to write an actual, honest-to-goodness published book one day and have started learning from the masters in terms of refining my craft. Author Ray Bradbury is a prolific writer who has published scores of stories, novels, plays, poems, films and musicals (he even helped develop the Spaceship Earth ride at Disneyworld!). His essays in this book detail an approach to life where the muse is ever-present and feeding into one's imagination. Not a small task (especially when writer's block is present) but his candor and style of speech were very engaging and inspiring. 

Favourite line: "The one person irreplaceable to the world, of which there is no duplicate. You." 

The Crime Book

Once a year or so, I go through a phase where I read up on true crime. The psychological aspects of it are fascinating to me, even though the feats of evil that some are capable of genuinely horrifies me. In fact, of all the books I've ever read there have been two where I had to immediately rid them off my property out of a weird fear that the negative energy contained within their pages would somehow manifest in my life (for the record, those books are "Invisible Darkness" by Stephen Williams and "On The Farm" by Stevie Cameron). This book by multiple authors and published by DK is more palatable in its writing and reference, acting as a summary of history's darkness without getting into too much detail. I always enjoy the design of DK's releases and look forward to reading more books from this series. 

Favourite line: I never really read up on the Italian Mafia so that section was a trip on organized crime. 

Written by Gail Dines

I read this book after watching an engaging TedTalk by the author, who holds a PhD and is also a professor of sociology and women's studies in the U.S.. In both, she examines the damaging effects of hardcore "gonzo" pornography on society, how it influences men's behaviour towards women and subsequently women's view towards themselves. Pornography itself is not a bad thing; sex is not a bad thing. But misogyny and violence are. This book intelligently details how all are connected. 

Favourite line: "A sexuality based on equality ultimately requires a society that is based on equality."