Vlad Thelad

Top Reviewer Ranking: 177
Helpful votes received on reviews: 85% (110 of 129)
Location: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada


Top Reviewer Ranking: 177 - Total Helpful Votes: 110 of 129
Red Fortress: History and Illusion in the Kremlin by Catherine Merridale
5.0 out of 5 stars An uninterrupted thread, March 31 2014
I began reading this book before the latest events in Crimea. How timely it has proven to be. This is a rigorous historical examination of a site, the Kremlin, and all its changes through history. What has remained constant is that all its occupants have always been aware of its symbolic value as an embodiment of all things Russian. Whether the past is recast, recreated, or conveniently rearranged, it always seems to be the great justifier for the continuity of authoritarianism. History does teach us some lessons, and this excellent book is full of them. Let me finish this mini-review quoting the author: Todays glorification of the Russian state, like that of previous regimes, is a… Read more
My Promised Land: The Triumph and Tragedy of Israe&hellip by Ari Shavit
5.0 out of 5 stars A must read, March 2 2014
There is no such thing as objectivity when it comes to discussing Israel. However, what Ari Shavit achieves with this book is as close as one could get to being objective while imbued with passion and love for the subject. This is a recount of Israels history from the personal view of a highly critical and committed writer. Shavit, whose progressive, left-leaning credentials are as unquestionable as his love of Israel, sheds light on rights and wrongs from all sides making no compromises. Throughout the book, he achieves a balance between intimate narrative and broad picture perspective, closely examining specific episodes and stepping back to showcase their historical weight. I truly… Read more
The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt
The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Considering how eclectic my reading list is, I often think I do not read enough fiction. Truth be told, personal taste is much more of the equation when reading fiction, and preceding great reviews or awards are no guarantee of a book fulfilling your expectations. All this to say, that it was with some hesitation that I plunged into the almost eight hundred pages of The Goldfinch, and how incredibly happy and rewarded I am for it. This is an extraordinarily well written book. It is not easy, at times it is hard, disturbing even, which attests to the power of words in creating and describing characters, feelings, sceneries and scenarios. It is a book you cannot rush, but can hardly put down… Read more

Wish List

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