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Lunch » Tags » Poetry » Reviews » Haiku U : From Aristotle to Zola, 100 Great Books in 17 Syllables » User review

Not much time to read? Try this

  • Apr 27, 2009
  • by
Rating:
+3
I'm a list-lover. Show me a list of must-read books or must-see movies and I've got a pen out forthwith. So when I saw David M. Bader's selection of 100 great books, that was enough to "hook" me and I had to flip the pages.

What a great idea: "Condensed into haiku, the 'great books' are now within the reach of even the shortest attention spans." It's the next best thing to a Kindle, and in the case of some of these books, better. The selections are weighty overall, or at least the originals are; reducing them to haiku cuts their weight drastically.

Allow me to share some of the delights of this little book.

Bader gives us St. Augustine's TRUE CONFESSIONS: 
  • This is just to say / I screwed around. Forgive me. / I enjoyed it so. 

Many truly important works of philosophy are represented, such as Adam Smith's THE WEALTH OF NATIONS: 
  • Supply meets demand. / The invisible hand claps. / Capitalist Zen. 

... and PHENOMENOLOGY OF SPIRIT by Georg W.H. Hegel: 
  • Thesis: A whole pig. / Antithesis: Butcher shop. / Synthesis: Schnitzel. 

...and BEING AND NOTHINGNESS by Jean-Paul Sartre: 
  • Gentle Left Bank sun-- / bluebirds chirp their empty song. / We are all condemned. 

Any list of 100 Great Books must include some drama and classic fiction; this list is no exception. We have WAITING FOR GODOT by Samuel Beckett: Act I.
  •  "It's hopeless. / My boots don't fit. Where is God?" / Act II. The same thing. 

...and Hawthorne's THE SCARLET LETTER: 
  • Grim, gray New England-- / all adulterers receive / free monogramming. 

Bader shows a pithy grasp of C.G. Jung's pioneering work THE ARCHETYPES AND THE COLLECTIVE UNCONSCIOUS: 
  • A patient says he / sees the phallus of the sun. / But then, who doesn't? 

Living as I do in the Maine woods, my personal favorite of Bader's great books is undoubtedly WALDEN, OR, LIFE IN THE WOODS by Henry David Thoreau: 
  • Morning: Pond-gazing. / Afternoon: Berry-picking. / What a hectic day. 

Don't let your days be too hectic this month, National Poetry Month. Take time to enjoy some great reading.

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More Haiku U : From Aristotle to Zo... reviews
review by . April 15, 2008
I'm a list-lover. Show me a list of must-read books or must-see movies and I've got a pen out forthwith. So when I saw David M. Bader's selection of 100 great books, that was enough to "hook" me and I had to flip the pages.    What a great idea: "Condensed into haiku, the 'great books' are now within the reach of even the shortest attention spans." It's the next best thing to a Kindle, and in the case of some of these books, better. The selections are weighty overall, or at least …
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When I love a book, I want to wave it in somebody's face and say "Look! Read this!" The internet was made for people like me, don't you think? The lunch.com crowd seems friendly enough...   … more
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About this book

Wiki

Take a hilarious crash course in literature—just three pithy lines—from a bestselling haiku humorist.

Why spend weeks slogging through The Iliad when you could just read the haiku? From Homer to Faulkner to Lao Tzu, the Great Books are now within the reach of even the shortest attention spans. Show off your literary prowess at cocktail parties with minimal prep time, thanks to the author of the popular Haikus for Jews.

In the sixteenth century, Zen monks in Japan developed the haiku, a poem consisting of three unrhymed lines of five, seven, and five syllables. Little did they know that their ancient art form was destined to become a handy tool for today’s time-crunched Western reader!

Reducing eyestrain and deforestation, Haiku U. distills dialogue and plot, capturing the essence of our favorite literary classics, seventeen syllables at time:

Marcel Proust, Remembrance of Things Past:
Tea-soaked madeleine—
a childhood recalled. I had
brownies like that once.

Charlotte Brontë, Jane Eyre:
O woe! His mad wife—
in the attic! Had they but
lived together first.

Just in time for graduation, Haiku U. gives the gift of an entire literary canon, packed into one hilarious gem. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Details

ISBN-10: 1592401287
Author: David M. Bader
Genre: Bargain Books

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