Got these delivered a few days ago. So far they’re both pretty 5/5, few if no flaws.
The last book I read was also an autobiography, but I painfully struggled to get through it because while decent, the writing style was extremely dry which made it hard to bare more than even 10 pages in one sitting. I don’t know if it’s the writing style (which is both easy to read and engaging) or the fact that I’m just more interested in this topic, but I’ve found this much more enjoyable. Other that I don’t how I could comment on it other than to say that it’s extremely comprehensive and objective, full of interesting sources.
The second book is something I saw about 6 months ago but forgot about until recently. It’s supposed to be a satirical take on Meiji era Japan (when the book was written) and more broadly human society in general, from the perspective of a cat.
I’d compare it to another book, Investigations of a Dog, which I read imagining that it would be in the style of this book, only for it to completely flop. Investigators of a Dog seemed to be an absolute mess, I found it hard to follow the plot which was written in a kind of diary-esque style. My main problem with it was that a lot of it’s content seemed more like thinly vailed analogies put forward by the author rather than the actual dog’s thoughts opinions. I am a Cat is the complete opposite of that.
Not only is the writing itself excellent, it genuinely seems to capture how one would imagine a cat might see the world from their perspective, both in the sense of the actual world, and it’s commentary on human society. Unlike the other book which only had one character (who seemed to be more of a placement for the authors ideas) this one has striking characters with genuine personalities, and the dynamic between them is both extremely engaging but realistic.
So far there hasn’t been much commentary on Meiji Japan specifically, but I’ve only started. But the commentary on some of the main human characters from the perspective of the cat is very interesting, and again seems genuine, as in you could imagine how a intelligent cat might passively view these people and their conversations from that perspective.
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