August | Coffee Table Thursday

9:30 AM


I must first apologize with the lack of reading I completed this month. I had a lot of work hours and overtime the past couple of weeks, which left little time for relaxation. Hopefully this doesn't continue with a new school semester coming up, but I've ordered a couple of new books to read for the upcoming months. 

Onto the two books that I did get to read ...




I'm back with another Michael Crichton book, Timeline. I picked this up about a year ago at a Goodwill for 99 cents. I love techno-thrillers, but it took me a while to sit down to read this one just because I wasn't really sure what it was actually about. 

But, after finishing Jurassic Park and The Lost World for the millionth time, I needed more Crichton. 

This book is more than just time travel. Crichton refers to it in the novel as kind of like faxing. You are taking one 'piece of paper' and sending the information to a separate location. 

A group of graduate students and their professor are working on an excavation in France when suddenly, their professor disappears after working with one of their funders. Marek, Kate, Chris, and David fly across the world to help this ITC company and find their professor. But the catch? They have to go to fourteenth century Europe in a dangerous time in history. And of course things go wrong the moment they step on ancient soil, losing their chaperones and being stuck in this old world for forty hours.

Crichton wrote in a way that separated you from being the reader but making you an observer. I feel like I am an unknown entity going through the novel with these characters and the changing point of view that transitions seamlessly and blends the stories together. 

Quotes:

"He had a term for people like this: temporal provincials - people who were ignorant of the past, and proud of it.

Temporal provincials were convinced that the present was the only time that mattered, and that anything that had occurred earlier could be safely ignored. The modern world was compelling and new, and the past had no bearing on it. Studying history was as pointless as learning Morse code, or how to drive a horse-drawn wagon. And the medieval period - all those knights in clanking armor and ladies in gowns and pointy hats - was so obviously irrelevant as to be beneath consideration."
- Pg. 84 




I preordered this book when Jamie Tworkowski was offering signed copies for any orders placed before its release date. 


I hate to call this a self help book, because I feel like most people just think of self help books as these trite little trends to pick up every now and then. But that's what this book is, and almost like a memoir, that will definitely change your outlook on life.

If you're familiar with Jamie, you know that he is the founder of the nonprofit organization To Write Love On Her Arms. The organization is one of the leading suicide prevention networks and a source of hope. 

Jamie is a saint. His words are hauntingly beautiful. His stories are unimaginable for the average person. 

I like to refer to this book as a memoir as well. As you move through the book, you'll notice that Jamie uses a lowercase i when referring to himself, as if he's making his own memoir less about him and more about you, the reader; the person he is trying to help. 

I'm just going to leave you with some quotes and this: This book will truly change your life. 

Quotes:

"We are only asked to love, to offer hope to the many hopeless. We don't get to choose all the endings, but we are asked to play the rescuers. We won't solve all mysteries and our hearts will certainly break in such a vulnerable life, but it is the best way. We were made to be lovers bold in broken places, pouring ourselves out again and again until we're called home."
- Pg. 22

"These things deserve your attention: your family, your friends, the people you will meet today, the strangers with their stories. They say, "We are all in this together." It is absolutely true. That girl with cancer in her stomach and chaos in her mind. She's with us. That guy with tears in his eyes and ghosts in his heart. He loved her, and you could see it. You could see it and you told him that it wasn't his to carry. You told him about the song. And you believed it. You were certain of it. So if it's true for him, then isn't it also true for you?

Wake up. You're alive."
- Pg. 28

"i like birthdays. i like them more for other people, but i'm glad we celebrate them. At the heart of it is the opportunity to tell someone "i'm glad that you were born," which is also to say "i'm glad that you're alive." Those are powerful statements. The world would be a different place if we lived that way, if we said and expressed these things, more than once a year."
- Pg. 42

"(There are people who invest in stocks, and there are people who invest in stories.)"
- Pg. 47


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