A Cruel Man Delighting in Flowers

...the mildness to which men ... had yielded was only half of the intoxication of beauty, while the other half ... was of such surpassing and terrible cruelty—the most cruel of men delights himself with a flower—that beauty ... failed quickly of its effect... 

Hermann BrochThe Death of Virgil

 

Jeremy Davies is made of ink, but don’t dip a feather in him. It tickles. He once painted a fingernail black and no one really noticed. He was disappointed. He’s also an editor, a religious atheist, a liker of strong coffees, a Shakespeare-lover, a political anarchist and someone who rarely has a pen when he needs one. He has been a PhD candidate, a personal trainer, a life model, a bouncer, an infantry soldier and someone who rarely had a pen when he needed one. He has had words published in a variety of places, in a variety of publications, in a variety of forms, in a variety of moments: Canada, Wet Ink, SMS and twelve minutes past three in the afternoon being some of these. His first novel, 'Missing Presumed Undead', will be re-published by Satalyte Publishing in February 2014. A second is on its way.

Darkness at Noon - Arthur Koestler A joy to read and an important book in a very genuine way: both in its original historical context and, perhaps, for good. While Koestler uses more 'real world' dynamics than his firend Orwell did in '1984', both explore the problems of revolution and modern revolutionary politics. While Orwell's character is a kind of 'everyman', Koestler's is an 'old guard' revolutionary faced with a purge. The ethics and unethics of both worlds collide brilliantly. In particular, in a way perhaps Orwell did not, Koestler manages to make his antagonists almost sympathetic in at least their ideological concerns if not their practice... It is a simply written masterpiece that uses a variety of interesting styles - containing some self-criticisms of style in a neatly wroght irony - and nicely structured using the relative interviews as a chaptering device. A strange relationship is carefully developed between the reader and the protagonist Rubashov that allows us to share a similar form of impotent melancholy that the character is experiencing at the conclusion.

Currently reading

Lyrical and Critical Essays
Albert Camus
The Western Canon: The Books and School of the Ages
Harold Bloom
The Rebel (Penguin Twentieth-Century Classics)
Albert Camus