Anti-Grooming Grooming

Is there a bigger insult nowadays than “Florida man”?

Here’s a peek at Florida’s Anti-Woke banned book list. A couple of them make sense considering Republicans should be terrified their constituents might read “1984.” You might notice that few classic novels are on this list and those that are present are decidedly for younger readers. Of course, that makes sense; at least for now this book banning is purportedly to save our children from evil (or was it to save them from thinking for themselves?).

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Remembering Guy Montag

Have you heard about the newest American wedge issue: banned books? We’ve always had books being banned, generally for understandable, even if unreasonable, reasons. Classic works often contain words or activities that are no longer acceptable. Many more contemporary works are designed to appeal to the reader’s most basic, animalistic imagination. How many excellent books question or even ignore such sacred human constructs as religion or American Exceptionalism. Nowadays it seems the universal excuse is that a book makes someone, anyone, uncomfortable.

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The Fall of the House of Pontifex

imgres.jpgImagine a decent textbook relating some of the less well-known events of the 17th century—the Thirty Years War, Oliver Cromwell, the Spanish Treasure ships, book-binding for fun and profit—add an old Dan Brown novel treatment and the script to National Treasure VII and stir well. After half-baking, turn the plot over an antique salver and serve. Voilá! Ex Libris by Ross King.

Is it a bad book? Well, I would say “No” because the author dishes out a great deal of historical data: enough that I have put the Thirty Years War and Oliver Cromwell on my reading list. But King uses the historical data (real or fictional) to weave an intricate story of intrigue centered on a missing text that would presumably have bumfuzzled the Pope and made all of Christianity cattywampus. Or at least that was the illusion the reader received from all the action in the book.

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