Monthly Archives: February 2015

What is the best-known book set in Denmark?

See note on methodology There is a hugely clear winner here, with a slight caveat that although we are clearly told that the setting is Kronborg castle, Helsingør, and there are contextual references aplenty to neighbouring countries, there isn’t a terribly … Continue reading

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February Books

Non-fiction: 3 (YTD 11) Het Achterhuis, by Anne Frank / The Diary of a Young Girl, by Anne Frank Anne Frank: The book, the life and the afterlife, by Francine Prose Tree and Leaf, by J R R Tolkien (has … Continue reading

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Links I found interesting for 28-02-2015

10 Tricks to Appear Smart in Meetings Some of these work. Some of them don’t. You decide!(tags: lifehacking funny ) Leonard Nimoy: “A life is like a garden. Perfect moments can be had, but not preserved, except in memory.” His … Continue reading

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What is the best-known book set in Serbia?

See note on methodology For the first time, but not for the last, I face the consequences of the break-up of the former Yugoslavia. Even those living there found it tricky to follow the shifting borders between the Slovenian referendum … Continue reading

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Links I found interesting for 27-02-2015

The Clash of Civilizations That Isn’t “The Iraq War, more than any other single factor, *created* ISIS.”(tags: waronterror iraq ) Eight-year-old with rare disorder has personal care benefits rescinded I hope those responsible are proud of themselves.(tags: ukpolitics disability ) … Continue reading

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Thursday reading

Current Anna Karenina, by Leo Tolstoy (a chapter a day) Watership Down, by Richard Adams (a chapter a week) Lethbridge-Stewart: The Forgotten Son, by Andy Frankham-Allen The Jonah Kit, by Ian Watson λ4 Last books finished θ4 Anne Frank: The … Continue reading

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Links I found interesting for 26-02-2015

EU referendum: Support for Britain’s EU membership reaches all-time high There is still hope!(tags: eu ukpolitics ) Life is a learning process, and I’ve much still to learn Natalie Bennett reflects, and apologises.(tags: ukpolitics ) Ada Kaleh, an Ottoman Atlantis … Continue reading

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What is the best-known book set in Bulgaria?

See note on methodology Far, far in the lead here is a play by an Irish writer, first performed in 1894 and published in 1898. A lot of people who are familiar with it forget that it is set during … Continue reading

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Links I found interesting for 25-02-2015

Listen: two disastrous interviews by Natalie Bennett Green leader crashes and burns.(tags: ukpolitics ) The day the Green party surge hit a cliff It’s not enough to have policies – need to present them properly too!(tags: ukpolitics ) Perhaps I … Continue reading

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What is the best-known book set in Switzerland?

See note on methodology This list of books has not always excelled at identifying work by female writers, but in Switzerland, which only gave women the vote in my lifetime, they do rather well. The most popular “switzerland”-tagged book on … Continue reading

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Links I found interesting for 24-02-2015

UK Visa Application Will Need You To Sign Up To ‘British Values’ Another great Tory idea (sarcasm).(tags: ukpolitics ) A Social-Media Mistake Is No Reason to Be Fired Except, of course, when it is.(tags: internet ) 2013 – 2014 Shortlisted … Continue reading

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What is the best-known book set in Austria?

See note on methodology I have to say that I was pleasantly surprised by this one. It’s a graphic novel, probably the only graphic novel we’ll get in this series of posts. I’m cheating slightly in that it’s the third … Continue reading

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The TBR meme

I got this from Victoria over at Eve’s Alexandria – her answers are much more interesting than mine. 1. How do you keep track of your TBR pile? Physically, I have an entire bookshelf (see last picture here) with books … Continue reading

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What is the best-known book set in Belarus?

See note on methodology Slim pickings here, I’m afraid. The top books on both LibraryThing and GoodReads which are set are two different non-fiction accounts of the same set of events, an organisation of Jewish partisans who fought against the … Continue reading

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Links I found interesting for 22-02-2015

Understated figure in social reconciliation of Northern Ireland Farewell, Maurna; we miss you.(tags: northernireland death ) Cybersex and the Syrian war Hackers’ online seduction of opposition – few details but seems credible.(tags: sexandgenderandsexuality syria internet ) The fall of the … Continue reading

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The Translation of Anne Frank

Having last read it six years ago, I have been rereading Anne Frank's diary, the 2003 definitive edition of Het Achterhuis in the original Dutch, which includes the most recently rediscovered pages, and also comparing it page by page with … Continue reading

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What is the best-known book set in Azerbaijan?

See note on methodology There is no competition here. Azerbaijan is at the edge of Europe, and there is one great (and fairly short) novel set there (with excusions to Dagestan and Iran) before, during and after the first world … Continue reading

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Links I found interesting for 21-02-2015

Soviet Tourism Posters Of The 1930s Mostly advertising Ukrainian destinations.(tags: ukraine )

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Nebula novel nominees by Goodreads/LibraryThing popularity

A clear front-runner here, and a clear ranking of the others; though NB that last year’s winner was fourth of eight nominees on both GR and LT. Note also that The Goblin Emperor gets the highest average rating from those … Continue reading

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What is the best-known book set in Sweden?

See note on methodology This won’t take long. Think of a trilogy, published in 2005, 2006 and 2007, after the author’s death, which became a worldwide best-seller, combining kinky sex, computer hacking, and political intrigue at the highest level. Not … Continue reading

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Links I found interesting for 20-02-2015

Blog Post Was Ethics Breach Professor fired for harassing postgrad, not for “un-PC” views.(tags: uspolitics blogging academe ) Want to get motivated? Try these miserable quotes @KimKierkegaard for the win!(tags: funny ) The best and worst elections of 2014 Clear … Continue reading

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Links I found interesting for 19-02-2015

Hacked Off responds to Peter Oborne’s resignation from the Daily Telegraph “We told you so!” (And they did.)(tags: ukpolitics ) The ‘Proof’ is Around You, Mr Hahn Commissioner @JHahnEU downplays attacks on Serbian media freedom.(tags: eu macedonia serbia ) Greece: … Continue reading

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Links I found interesting for 18-02-2015

From Luxembourg With Love Just…. there are no words(tags: luxembourg eu ) Cyprus: an island in search of a saga to learn from Inside the economic disaster.(tags: cyprus eu ) Why I have resigned from the @telegraph Extraordinary piece by … Continue reading

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Links I found interesting for 17-02-2015

4 Maps Crucial to Understanding Europe’s Population Shift where the growth is – in jobs and people.(tags: eu migration ) Underwater Archeology: Diving 800 Feet in Ancient Cathedral The secrets of Agia Sofia!(tags: turkey archaeology ) The Tories’ Strange Facebook … Continue reading

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Thursday Reading

Current Anna Karenina, by Leo Tolstoy (a chapter a day) Watership Down, by Richard Adams (a chapter a week) θ4 Tree and Leaf, by J R R Tolkien Last books finished η4 Het Achterhuis, by Anne Frank Reckless Engineering, by … Continue reading

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My tweets

Wed, 12:56: Why I have resigned from the @telegraph http://t.co/G8xGLRZRiQ Extraordinary piece by @OborneTweets. Wed, 13:19: RT @StephenFidler1: EU antitrust chief Vestager says she is preparing to move against Gazprom (WSJ interview) http://t.co/SRCjz1k19J via @… Wed, 14:15: RT @ElSatanico: Karma … Continue reading

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What is the best-known book set in Hungary?

See note on methodology There’s some room for dispute here. Once you have (again, and not for the last time) disqualified The Historian on the grounds of being set in too many countries, the top-ranked book ostensibly set in Hungary … Continue reading

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My tweets

Tue, 12:56: Lovecraft’s Favorite Words http://t.co/PxhQfCex47 Because you wanted to know. Tue, 16:05: Reports of Tony Hart’s second death are greatly exaggerated http://t.co/OyB32tjAgI A viral story that wasn’t news. Tue, 20:22: What is the best-known book set in Portugal? http://t.co/89TBtsf7lO … Continue reading

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What is the best-known book set in Portugal?

See note on methodology There is a very clear winner here – most frequently tagged “Portugal” on both Goodreads and LibraryThing by a long way, and the “Portugal”-tagged book owned by the most users on both systems by an event … Continue reading

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My tweets

Mon, 12:56: Twitter Mobs versus Letter Mobs http://t.co/GSLYsVtrwO Further comment. Mon, 14:41: RT @MalmstromEU: Why increasing trade is a no-brainer – writing about #TTIP with @JHillEU today in @commentisfree / @guardian. http://t.co/… Mon, 16:05: 4 Maps Crucial to Understanding Europe’s … Continue reading

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