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Posts from the ‘News and Notes’ Category

The Painted Bird: Memoir or Fiction?

Did you ever hear the one about Jerzy Kosinski passing off The Painted Bird as a memoir?

Yeah, that kind of happened.

Here’s how our always trustworthy friends at Wikipedia put it: Read more


Terrible Things Happen in This Book

Let’s talk about The Painted Bird.

If you read my preview, you’ll remember that our protagonist in this novel is an orphaned six-year-old boy during World War 2.

In the first 60 pages, said child witnesses the following incidents (note: these aren’t essential to the plot so no spoilers here…just illustrating the graphic nature of this book): Read more

Read This Passage Before You Cheat On Your Spouse

Graham Greene, y’all. The man is such a brilliant writer.

I want to share one more passage with you before I wrap this book up soon and move on to the next one. This passage comes just after a scene where one of the main characters, Scobie, has committed his first act of infidelity. Read more

One Powerful Quote About Forgiveness

As I’m working through Graham Greene’s famous novel, The Heart of the Matter, I’m reminded of how incredible a novelist this man was.

He might’ve been a bit of a creeper, but Greene could write.

He’s one of those writers that has so many zingers that work as powerful quotes even outside the context of the story. Here’s a passage to show you what I’m talking about. Read more

The Shirley Temple – Graham Greene Connection

I know things have been slow here at 101 Books lately, and obviously that’s my fault. Season of life, family and work responsibilities, and all that.

I fully intend to get back on a regular 2-3 posts a week schedule. I really do.

Today, though, I’m sharing a post from a few years ago about Graham Greene and his strange obsession with Shirley Temple.

I’m reading through The Heart of the Matter right now, and posted this back when I was reading his other novel on the list, The Power and the Glory.


Way back in 1938, Graham Greene was writing a review of the movie Wee Willie Winkie (what does that even mean?), starring the eight-year-old Shirley Temple.

While writing his review of the movie, Greene said this about Shirley Temple:

Read more

George Orwell Wasn’t A Fan Of This Graham Greene Novel

How would you like to have your novel—that novel you spent years working on—reviewed by George Orwell?

This would be like making your best risotto and serving it up to Gordon Ramsay. No pressure, right?

Well, Graham Greene, a famous author in his own right, experienced just that. When The Heart of the Matter was published in 1948, Greene was already an established author, having written 11 novels including The Power and the Glory.

George Orwell, though? Not a big fan—at least of this particular novel.

A few quotes: Read more

20 Reasons Why Donald Trump Should Never Be President

One astute blog commenter once said that this blog was “the death of art and meaning.” I kind of took that as a compliment. Do you understand the type of power I have to construct a book blog that can single-handedly destroy art?

That brings me to today’s post. As I write this today, one man is attempting to accomplish a feat that only this blog has been accused of. Yet, this man, if he is elected as president, will literally kill all forms of art and meaning. This man…he’s like a powerful Dyson vacuum that sucks up every morsel of art and every particle of meaning tangled in what was once a beautiful Persian-style rug–mainly, because this man probably hates Persians.

So, hey! Did you know Donald Trump is running for president of the United States?

Did you know Donald Trump has written a book?

Did you know, in fact, that Donald Trump has written 18 books?

I use the word “written” loosely, because more than likely a ghostwriter interviewed the guy and wrote the manuscript. Judging by his general abuse of the English language, I’m doubting the quality of Mr. Trump’s skills with the written word.

Anyway, the only thing more shocking than The Donald’s current success in the polls is his sheer lack of any filter with regard to what he says and writes. Donald Trump is what happens when the Westboro Baptist Church runs for president.

I’ll apologize ahead of time for the political nature of this post. But I had to write it. I’m currently watching the nation I love inch closer and closer to electing a womanizing, unabashed racist, vile excuse for a human being as president. And I’m embarrassed.

Besides that, as I said above, Donald Trump has written 18 books–and this is a book blog!

All you need to know about why Donald Trump should never be the president of a Kiwanis Club, much less president of the United States, is easily found in his own books and in the many things he’s said in newspapers, magazines and on television. The man indicts himself. So let’s look at all the reasons–in other words, things he’s actually said–why Donald Trump should never be president. (All of these quotes, plus many more, can be found sourced on Politico) Read more

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