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Life of Pi
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Life of Pi proves that human imagination knows no boundaries. The really amazing thing is that the author makes the freakish story sound acceptable, because it is compeletely consistent in all its weirdness. Morevover it is written in simple but very beautiful and often even poetic English.
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The Crucible is of course not a children's book, but a play. Moreover it's a classic by Arthur Miller, probably the most important American playwright of the 20th century. He wrote The Crucible as a kind of allegory for the mass hysteria which ruled America during the McCarty years when they saw communists everywhere and people were asked to spy on their neighbours and colleagues.
Battleground Vietnam: War In The Jungle - Limited Edition Tin Box Set (3 Discs)
Very badly made documentary in the American style, so very superficial and without any comment by neutral historians. Picture quality is extremely poor, and pictures often do not match contents. The same pictures are shown over and over again illustrating completely different battles.
On Chesil Beach
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One of the best books I've read this year (and I read quite a lot). Beautifully written in very precise and rich English with lots of sympathy for the two main characters. The ending is sad, indeed, but how thought-provoking!