Ken taught high school students and at NCSU. He is a book pusher! You may have encountered his “Psst, hey you! C'mere. I've got a book you're going to love,” while perusing the stacks. He loves dogs, most of all his standard poodles, Amelie and Auberon.
Absolutely the best book I've ever read. Crowley is a master of the English language; his prose is elegant, eloquent, and lyrical. The story of the Drinkwater and Barnable families is a tale laced with humor, sorrow, and legend—a feast of many flavors.
The most visceral and authentic account of war, bar none. Remarque captures the horror, the pity and the despair of WWI, an exercise in attrition from which we have apparently learned nothing.
Published in 1930, Brave New World is a prescient and satirical look at today's culture, which is immersed and hungry for virtual reality entertainment, awash in consumerism, and stratified.
This is an account of German ambassador William Dodd's family's experience in pre-WWII Berlin (1933-1937). With growing horror, in the worst job imaginable in the diplomatic corps, Dodd watches the rise of the Nazis and their nihilistic philosophy.
Here is the the most lovably obnoxious protagonist one could hope to meet. Ignatius Riley's journey through New Orleans’ French quarter is the most hilarious ride I've ever taken.
If anyone wants to find the root of many problems in Africa, read this intimate account of the destruction of a tribal society in Nigeria at the hands of British colonialists. Achebe gives insight into the tribal culture of the Ibo, and the devastating effect the British incursion had on that people.
This satire of totalitarian societies will never lose its relevance. In this darkly humorous cautionary tale, Orwell shows himself to be a master of understatement, irony, and symbolism through rich but economical descriptive writing.
Garcia's novel stands at the head of magical realist writing. Follow the fortunes of the Buendia family in the town of Macando, which they found and inhabit until its final decrepitude, in this narrative rich with metaphor, symbol, and allusion. Garcia tells how the past haunts us as individuals and as members of a national identity.
If you've ever wondered how an extraterrestrial would handle transplantation into our human society, this is your book—funny, touching, and tragic.
Between 1885 and 1908, six to ten million Congolese died from disease, mutilation, and murder, a direct result of the depredations visited on the Congo by King Leopold II of Belgium. Hochschild has received high praise for his examination of this little known tragic genocide of the modern age.