Tal Cohen's Bookshelf: A Collection of Personal Opinions about Books


Science Fiction


Computer Science

Book In-Jokes
The Fiction Collection
“I wonder... What's in a book while it's closed... Because as soon as I open it, there's a whole story with people I don't know yet and all kinds of adventure and deeds and battles... All those things are somehow shut up in a book. But it's already there, that's the funny thing. I just wish I knew how it could be.”
Michael Ende, The Neverending Story

The Science Fiction Collection
“A wild dream and a far one -- but no wilder and no farther than some of the dreams of man.”
Clifford D. Simak, City

The Non-Fiction Collection
“That's the reason they're called lessons: because they lessen from day to day.”
Lewis Carroll, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland

The Computer Science Collection
“Think of a computer program. Somewhere, there is one key instruction, and everything else is just functions calling themselves, or brackets billowing out endlessly through an infinite address space. What happens when the brackets collapse? Where's the final “END IF”? Is any of this making sense?”
Douglas Adams, Mostly Harmless

Book In-Jokes

Here I try to maintain a list of book in-jokes: little jokes that most readers won't notice, hidden in otherwise serious books (for more about what "in-jokes" are, see at the end of the list).

I'll need your help: if you find any such in-jokes, let me know. Please include the word “injoke” in the subject.

The books are listed in no particular order.

Book Reviews / Read Log Book Reviews: Fiction Science-Fiction Book Reviews Non-Fiction Book Reviews Computer Science Book Reviews

A bulk update about my reading in over last nine month. Lots of Homer and Homer-inspired reading (Ulysses and Homer’s modern Greek sequel, for example), but also a bit of science-fiction and other lighter reading.
[Read Log]


Mostly about the Odyssey... but also about other comedies, as well as an alternative history time travel literary mystery, and more. My read log for January to March 2023.
[Read Log]


A time-traveler’s survival guide, two novels involving book-loving Japanese people, two retellings of the Greek mythology, and five comedies made most of my reading for the last three months of 2022.
[Read Log]


I’ve read many books in my life, and many programs, but this was the first time I’ve read a book which is simply the documentation of a program; and a particularly short one at that (this isn’t Knuth’s Literate Programming project). Other things I’ve read between July and September 2022 include Greek plays, a history of ancient Greece, a science fiction book or two, and more.
[Read Log]


I’ve spent much of April to June making progress on the second volume of The Complete Greek Drama, but didn’t finish this hefty tome by the end of June. Of the five books that that I did complete during these three months, only two are Greece-related.
[Read Log]

[See earlier reviews]
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