The last 60 or so books I’ve bought, I’ve bought them via Kindle for iPad. Erin recently introduced me to Readmill, which offers a reading app and a way to share highlighted passages online. People can follow one another, see what they’re reading, see which parts of a book someone found most interesting, puzzling, moving, or troubling by their highlights and comments on the text. Readmill posts your highlights and notes to your profile if you choose.
Readmill continues to improve with each iteration. The last update included an in-app dictionary, something that I find indispensable. Readmill doesn’t yet have the ability to re-read a book. You can re-read it, but the book is considered “finished.” I find re-reading far more pleasurable than the first read. On Erin’s recommendation I read The Magicians by Lev Grossman. Fantastic stuff! Read it twice. Am now reading Grossman’s sequel, The Magician King.
Some of my favorite random passages from The Magicians:
Use magic in anger, and you will harm yourself much more quickly than you will harm your adversary. There are certain spells . . . if you lose control of them, they will change you. Consume you. Transform you into something not human, a niffin, a spirit of raw, uncontrolled magical energy.
Alice was still watching him. Behind her the mosaic was a swirl of green tentacles and whitecaps and floating fragments. He slid down the stone bench to her end and kissed her and bit her lower lip until she gasped.
He felt his intoxication already turning into a hangover, that queasy neurological alchemy that usually happens during sleep. His abdomen was overfull, swollen with tainted viscera. People he’d betrayed came wandering out from the place in his mind where they usually stayed.
Space was full of angry little particles.
So instead he kept his little particle of shame and filth inside, where it could fester and turn septic.
Most people are blind to magic. They move through a blank and empty world. They’re bored with their lives, and there’s nothing they can do about it. They’re eaten alive by longing, and they’re dead before they die.
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