Book Review: Free Will

Free Will

Harris explores the notion that free will is an illusion in this nimble book (which, at 83 pages, can be read in one sitting or a couple of Metro rides), amiably and conversationally jumping from point to point. The book’s length is one of its charms: He never belabors any one topic or idea, sticking around exactly as long as he needs to in order to lay out his argument (and tackle the rebuttals that it will inevitably provoke) and not a page longer. Go to article

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2012, Early Summer Reading List #Books

I am reading all day long specialized non-fiction books and journal essays.  That is how life is like when you want to be an Academic in a world in which competition is getting harder and harder.  However, I also find some time to read good non-fiction from other specialties or great fiction and poetry that allows me to romanticize.

Choosing good non-fiction is very hard for me since the offers are so many and the time to read is so reduced. Plus, the new offers in the market are huge and I learned when working as Collection Developer for my college library that even reviewing the best book review magazines takes a lot of time.

I found this list of the 2012 Pulitzer Prize winners that will surely help me choose the best non-fiction to read this summer when traveling for holidays.  I hope you will also find this list helpful!  Also, I add some other fiction books from my ongoing list of “pending to read” that may be also helpful for you!

PULITZER WINNERS 2012

MORE FICTION Recommendations

If you have some recommendations please share them with me! I’d love to have them in my reading list! 😀

April 23, 2012. World Book and Copyright Day

Today I am joining the celebration of the World Book and Copyright Day (also known as International Day of the Book or World Book Days) a yearly event on 23 April, organized by UNESCO to promote readingpublishing and copyright. The Day was first celebrated in 1995 and in 2012 the UK World Book day was celebrated on March 1, 2012.[1]

As part of my celebration I am sharing with you some quotes from one of my favorite books.  This year I have chosen the book “The Law” written by Frederic Bastiat.  The book was first published as a pamphlet in June, 1850  and later became widely read in Europe and the world.

Life, liberty, and property do not exist because men have made laws. On the contrary, it was the fact that life, liberty, and property existed beforehand that caused men to make laws in the first place.” ― Frédéric Bastiat, The Law

In The Law, Bastiat states that “each of us has a natural right — from God — to defend his person, his liberty, and his property”. The State is a “substitution of a common force for individual forces” to defend this right. The law becomes perverted when it punishes one’s right to self-defense in favor of another’s acquired right to plunder.

Bastiat defines two forms of plunder: “stupid greed and false philanthropy”. Stupid greed is “protective tariffs, subsidies, guaranteed profits” and false philanthropy is “guaranteed jobs, relief and welfare schemes, public education, progressive taxation, free credit, and public works”. Monopolies and Socialism are legalized plunder which Bastiat emphasizes is legal but not legitimate.

If you are interested in reading more about this ideas here are the links to the book,

The Law (English Edition) via Amazon.com

La Ley (Spanish Edition) via Amazon.com

La Loi (annoté) (French Edition) via Amazon

Book Recommendation: The Art of Nonfiction Writing

The Art of Nonfiction: A Guide for Writers and Readers

Writing a 15-page essay is difficult; writing a 15-page publishable paper is even more difficult. But writing a 15-page essay that is publishable and consistent in all its content is a masterpiece.

As difficult as to writing so many pages is to write a single paragraph that is structured in a readable, rational and valuable way.  By readable I mean that is grammatically correct. By rational I mean that its sentences are all logical, valid and non-contradictory. By  valuable I mean that achieves the goal of informing and adding value for the specific target of people for whom you are writing.

To learn how to do this and continue perfecting the “art” of writing I went through a course a year ago that used the book “The Art of Nonfiction Writing. A Guide for Writers and Readers” written by Ayn Rand as the main literature. The book is a magnificent tool that analysis different steps of the Writing Process by dealing it as an “ability to create quality nonfiction; a skill that can be learned like any other.”

Amazon’s Best Books for December

Christmas is almost here and many of you are getting ready to go out traveling on holidays.  I will be studying and writing essays until the days before Christmas and won’t have much time to read a nice novel.

Nonetheless, I found this list of Book Recommendations from Amazon that may be interesting for those of you looking for fiction book recommendations. I am already planning to buy one of the books from the list.  I already read Bolano’s “The Third Reich” and strongly recommend it!

Best Books of the Month
Steve Jobs
Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson
Hardcover  |  Kindle book
Extra Virginity: The Sublime and Scandalous World of Olive Oil by Tom Mueller
Hardcover  |  Kindle book
The Third Reich by Roberto Bolano
Hardcover  |  Author page
Alexander Girard by Todd Oldham
Hardcover  |  Author page
420 Characters by Lou Beach
Hardcover  |  Kindle book
The Drop by Michael Connelly
Hardcover  |  Kindle book
Atlas Shrugged
Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand 
Hardcover  |  Kindle book
The Leopard by Jo Nesbo
Hardcover  |  Kindle book
The Tiny Book of Tiny Stories: Volume 1 by Joseph Gordon-Levitt
Hardcover  |  Author page
The Angel Makers by Jessica Gregson
Hardcover  |  Kindle book

Amazon’s top 10 History Books of 2011

In the Garden of Beasts: Love, Terror, and an American Family in Hitler's BerlinLost in Shangri-La: A True Story of Survival, Adventure, and the Most Incredible Rescue Mission of World War IICatherine the Great: Portrait of a WomanThe Greater Journey: Americans in ParisA History of the World in 100 Objects

The Best Books of 2011

Save up to 40% on our editors’ picks for the top 100 best books of the year, plus year-end top 10s in over two dozen categories

So many books. So many choices. It’s not easy putting together a list of the year’s best books, but we’ve held many meetings and votes, we’ve pored over the books and occasionally poured our hearts out to get you this final Top 100. For every book on the list, there has been an impassioned plea and an argument made–so don’t just look at the Top 10 or 20. There are great books all up and down the Top 100 list. One of them might be the perfect read for you.


The Great Sea: A Human History of the Mediterranean
Radioactivity: A History of a Mysterious ScienceDestiny of the Republic: A Tale of Madness, Medicine and the Murder of a President

The Longest War: The Enduring Conflict between America and Al-Qaeda1861: The Civil War Awakening