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Hard Times, A Longman Cultural Edition
Charles Dickens
Tremendous Trifles
G. K. Chesterton
"Симпсоны" как философия: Эссе
Mark T. Conard, Aeon J. Skoble, William Irwin
Лекции по зарубежной литературе
Vladimir Nabokov
Пробуждающаяся наука. Математика Древнего Египта, Вавилона и Греции
Иван Веселовский, B.L. Van Der Waerden
Letters Written by Lord Chesterfield to His Son
Philip Dormer Stanhope
Clarissa, or, the History of a Young Lady
Samuel Richardson, Angus Ross
Surprised by Joy
C.S. Lewis
A Bit on the Side
William Trevor
Ojos de perro azul
Gabriel García Márquez

A Guide to the Birds of East Africa

A Guide to the Birds of East Africa - Nicholas Drayson A definitive example of "tell-not-show". Yes, that seems to be the guiding principle of this book's style. Even the birds are told and enumerated by name, though what could hold a greater potential of "showing" than two hundred exotic birds?

Each character of any importance to the story has a neat introductory chapter, describing his personal history ("his" is intentional here: there's only one female character), tastes and appearance. I would take that from Dickens, okay (not that he always does it), but a modern writer should know better.

The protagonist is even more underdeveloped than other characters, because we get several things he did or does without any reasons for them either in the circumstances or in his inner motivations; and they are not even essential to the story! The whole purpose of introducing his son is to tell us Mr. Malik is a good person, which is also reiterated outright several times. And you know what? I'm not inclined to believe, because I don't see the person at all, only a collection of carefully enumerated character traits.

The way the author constantly introduces himself into the story, addressing the reader directly with a question as to what they think would happen at this point or an anecdote of his life, was probably meant to create a cosy atmosphere, but failed miserably. These insertions only serve to break up the story flow and so are annoying.

And finally, the plot contains no reward for these deficiencies. The seemingly set up plot twists evaporate when it comes to the point, and the tacked-on twee ending is totally unsatisfactory. Oh, wait - this has a sequel too? Something to avoid, then.