I’m on The Week.

On June 10, 2019, I published the following article on The Week. I had so much fun writing this article. I could talk about runestones all day.

Viking Runestones Were the Original Tweets.

Runestones the First Tweets |The Week |The Boomerang

Runestone Sö 106. Source: Riksantikvarieämbetet/Swedish National Heritage Board.

In the remote Swedish countryside, a 1,000-year-old stone slab stands raised by the side of a road. Chiseled onto it, a message has been carved in runes — symbols that served as letters in the ancient Germanic alphabet. The runes tell onlookers that a man named Alrik commissioned and raised this stone slab in commemoration of his father, Spjut, a Viking famous for destroying and laying siege to fortifications in the west. Alrik basks in the glory of Spjut’s accomplishments: “Alrik raised the stone, son of Sigrid, after his father Spjut, he in the west had been, castle he had broken and conquered. The arts of the siege, he knew them all.”

Thousands of Viking Age runestones like this one dot the Swedish landscape, providing direct glimpses into the lives of the Vikings. The messages are short, self-expressive, and, for us onlookers, very out-of-context. More often than not, they contain the unsolicited opinions of the person who commissioned the stone. In many ways, these ancient dispatches are similar to another, more modern style of communication: tweets.

If you would like to read the article in its entirety, please click here.

In the words of my friend, the Australian, I shall return.

I’m on The Daily Beast

On April 20, 2019, I published the following article on The Daily Beast.

Give the Notre Dame a Modern Roof the Alt-Right Will Hate.

Notre Dame fire_BBC
Photo: BBC.

If you wish to read the article, please click here.

In the words of my friend, the Australian, I shall return.

10 Things You Need to Know about the Ancient Library of Alexandria

On February 4, 2019, I published the following post on Book Riot.

10 Things You Need to Know about the Ancient Library of Alexandria.

Alexander the Great | 10 Things You Need to Know about the Ancient Library of Alexandria | The Boomerang

Alexander the Great, part of a mosaic, c. 100 BCE, Pompeii, Italy.

In 334 BCE, Alexander the Great set out to conquer the world. On his conquests, Alexander brought with him historians and geographers to document and spread the word about the different societies and cultures they encountered as they fought their way from Macedonia and Greece in the west to India in the east.

After his untimely death in 323 BCE, Alexander’s conquests helped usher in an era in Ancient history named Hellenism. Hellenism is the result of Greek-Macedonian culture blending with the societies of North Africa, the Middle East, Central Asia, and India. It is defined by vibrant artistic expressions, expanded philosophical horizons, and a constant search for new knowledge. No other institution illustrates the spirit of Hellenism better than the ancient library of Alexandria, Egypt.

Here are ten things you need to know about the ancient library of Alexandria.

If you wish to read the article in its entirety, please click here.

In the words of my friend, the Australian, I shall return.

I’m on Goodreads

Last year I took the plunge and joined Goodreads. I’ve been searching for a way to keep track of my readings as well as writing short reviews, since I’ve noticed that doing both of these things helps me retain what I read to a higher degree. I’ve tried keeping book journals, writing about books here on The Boomerang, tweeting about books I’ve read, but nothing seemed to work out in the long run.

I joined Goodreads in July last year, and so far, it seems to be working out well. If you’d like to follow me on Goodreads, you can find me there under my full name.

Here’s a sample of the books I’ve read and reviewed on Goodreads. Hopefully it will help you find some new books and authors to read. Either way, I hope you enjoy the reviews.

Nnedi Okorafor, Binti: Home.

Eric Idle, Always Look on the Bright Side of Life. A Sortabiography.

Brian McClellan, Promise of Blood.

Aeschylus, Oresteia.

J.Y. Yang, The Black Tides of Heaven.

Eve MacDonald, Hannibal. A Hellenistic Life.

Myke Cole, The Queen of Crows.

In the words of my friend, the Australian, I shall return.

Murakami Withdraws from the Alternative Nobel Prize in Literature

On September 17, 2018, I published the following post on Book Riot.

Murakami Withdraws from the Alternative Nobel Prize in Literature.

Haruki-MurakamiJapanese author Haruki Murakami has asked to withdraw his nomination as one of the four finalists for The New Academy Prize in Literature, also known as the alternative Nobel Prize in Literature.

According to The New Academy’s press release, Murakami is…

If you would like to read the post in its entirety, please click here.

In the words of my friend, the Australian, I shall return.

15 of the Best Alien Books: Invasion Stories, Encounters, and Beyond

On August 14, 2018, I published the following post on Book Riot.

15 of the Best Alien Books: Invasion Stories, Encounters, and Beyond.

crop-circles-270x142

Are we alone? Human beings have been searching for this answer arguably from the very beginning of our species. When science fiction came into its own as a genre around the turn of the 20th century, books about aliens and space exploration became an immediate genre staple. With the dawn of the Space Age in the 1950s, the urgency of the question of whether we are the only ones inhabiting this vast space only increased. The more we learn about our universe, the less we seem to know.

Here are books that we at Book Riot consider the 15 best alien books.

If you would like to read the post in its entirety, please click here.

In the words of my friend, the Australian, I shall return.

A Closer Look at the Alternative Nobel Prize in Literature Longlist

On July 18, 2018, I published the following post on Book Riot.

A Closer Look at the Alternative Nobel Prize in Literature Longlist

Nobelmedaljen

The longlist for the alternative Nobel Prize, and award meant to be handed out instead of the regular Nobel Prize in Literature, is now available, nominating 47 Swedish and international authors.

If you wish to read the post in its entirety, please click here.

In the words of my friend, the Australian, I shall return.