Book of the Fortnight

Martyn Jackson recommends “Death Message” by Mark Billingham

Martyn Jackson, ever the thriller fan, recommends Death Message, by Mark Billingham. The series follows British detective Tom Thorne, who in this edition, unpacks the case of “killing biker gang members and police officers,” recounted Jackson. 

The novel is truly thrill seeking, as Jackson explained, “each time Thorne gets a death message, recording the kills!” Jackson follows, expanding on the premise of the book that “finding out why will make him take huge gambles that may also cost him friendships and his badge.” 

This “truly absorbing case” is reinforced by Tom Thorne’s character, who has a series to his name, as Jackson finalizes, “another great book by Bellingham with superb protagonists.” 

Camille Jackson recommends “Babel: Or the Necessity of Violence: An Arcane History of the Oxford Translator’s Revolution” by R. F. Kuang. 

As my first novel from the “Dark Academia” genre, I was intrigued by the story line, but also the intense and highly researched academic dimension of the book. As you read, you learn. In this case, the history of the British Empire has included a magic element that metaphorically disentangles complex chains of oppression and exploitation. 

The premise of the book brings the severity of the British Empire to light, and the extremely well-rounded characters kept drawing me back. The book develops quickly and moves rapidly as the seeds of revolution are planted early, but the journey to violence is fascinating, emotional, page-turning, and impressive. 

I highly recommend this book to those interested in the unique blend of adventure with scholarship and the power of knowledge within an Empire. 

Dr. Mary Dinh recommends “Bilingual Life and Reality” by François Grosjean 

Assistant Director of Multilingual Students Services, Mary Dinh, recommends “Bilingual Life and Reality” to understand the power of the bilingual mind. “Before, it’s all about, okay you are not a native English speaker, you must move from learning your first language towards mastering and perfecting a second language. But he (Grosjean) says bilingual is not two monolinguals in one body.” 

Understanding that “the moment your brain takes in new information, you start to lose something,” highlights that the bilingual mind has unique, multidimensional means of interpreting and accessing information. 

Dinh emphasizes that “that is the beauty of being bilingual, is you can always see yourself as a life-long learner.” A caveat within this expanse of learning is that “those are people who never think that they belong to a certain place, a certain cultural identity,” highlighting the beauty and transferability that multilinguists maintain. This book is must-read for those interested in bilingualism and the power of language, according to Dinh’s reviews. 

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