10 Things You Need to Know about the Golden Haggadah

On April 6, 2017, I published the following post on Book Riot.

10 Things You Need to Know about the Golden Haggadah

The Golden Haggadah miniatures

Next week is Passover, one of the most important holidays in Judaism. Passover celebrates the Exodus, in other words when God liberated the Jews from slavery in Egypt.

On the first night of Passover, family and friends gather round for the Seder when everybody takes turns reading from a book called a haggadah. The haggadah contains the story of the Exodus, intermingled with prayers and songs. The Seder is then concluded with good food and wine.

Because the Torah contains only text, and depictions of God are forbidden, over time the haggadah became the book where Jews interpreted their religion through images. Throughout the centuries, the haggadah also became a way for Jewish families to display their prosperity and wealth.

No other haggadah is a better example of this than the Golden Haggadah.

Here are ten things you need to know about the Golden Haggadah.

If you want to read the rest of this post, please click here.

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

People of Color in the Middle Ages: A Primer to Promote Diversity in Fantasy

On February 6, 2017, I published the following post on Book Riot.

People of Color in the Middle Ages: A Primer to Promote Diversity in Fantasy

saint-maurice-18

St. Maurice

A recurring topic of debate within the SFF community is the issue of historical accuracy in medieval fantasy fiction. Claims are repeatedly made that there were no people of color in medieval Europe. Therefore, the argument goes, medieval fantasy fiction with all white, Christian characters is historically accurate. Any inclusion of people of color or other religions is a distortion of history in the name of political correctness.

In actual fact, medieval Europe was a complex society where several different cultures, religions, and linguistic groups coexisted under the umbrella of the omnipresent Catholic Church.

As Jonathan Hsy shows in his book…

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

10 Things You Need to Know about the Luttrell Psalter

On September 29, 2016, I published the following post on Book Riot.

10 Things You Need to Know about the Luttrell Psalter

2016-09-22_1858

The Luttrell Psalter is one of the most famous manuscripts from medieval England because of the images that decorate its pages. Some of these images have been interpreted as the most accurate portrayals of medieval rural life while others seem to make no sense at all.

However, if we dig deeper into the layout of the images on the page, the Luttrell Psalter reveals itself to be a magnificent example of political satire and wordplay of the highest level.

Here are ten things you need to know about the Luttrell Psalter and its images.

If you would like to read the entire post, please click here.

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

Eurovision Song Contest. A Primer

On Saturday May 14, 2016, Ukraine won the Eurovision Song Contest for the second time. Their winning contribution was the song “1944” performed by Jamala.

This year the Eurovision was broadcast in the US for the first time in the contest’s sixty-year history. Leading up to the Eurovision I published the following introductory post about the contest on Book Riot.

Eurovision Song Contest. A Primer.

Eurovision 2016 logo

With over 200 million viewers, the Eurovision Song Contest is one of the largest TV events in the world, and on May 14 it will be broadcast in the US for the first time.

After sixty years the US will finally be treated to this wonderfully cheesy international music contest that claims to be all about the song but in actual fact is just as much about politics.

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.

The Boomerang 2015 Round-Up

The year 2015 is coming to an end and it’s time for a round-up of the statistics of the past twelve months.

This year has been a successful year for The Boomerang. The domain name was changed to ehkern.com. The total number of visits has increased by 28% while the average number of visits per month has increased also with 28%.

Total visits 2015: 10,020 (as of December 30)
Total visits 2014: 7,827

Average number of visits per month in 2015: 835
Average number of visits per month in 2014: 652

Top five most popular posts in 2015:
1) Historical Truth vs Historical Validity
2) Five Reasons Why You Should Visit Mississippi
3) HG Wells’ The Time Machine and The Issue of Race
4) The First Rambo Came from Sweden
5) Ernest Hemingway Ate Dolphin

The Boomerang was visited from 129 countries in 2015. The top five countries with the most visits were:
1) USA
2) United Kingdom
3) Canada
4) Australia
5) Sweden

The Boomerang was reached through links on other sites. The top three referring sites in 2015 were:
1) Facebook
2) Book Riot
3) Twitter

Thank you all for reading!

See you in 2016!

Happy New Year!

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

5 Reasons Why You Should Read Album Liner Notes

On October 3, 2015, I published the following post on Book Riot.

5 Reasons Why You Should Read Album Liner Notes

I love reading album liner notes. You know, the fine print on the inner sleeve of a vinyl record or inside the booklet that comes with the CD. I love liner notes because they contain information about musicians and bands that is rarely found in biographies or magazines.

Here are five reasons why you should read album liner notes…

If you would like to read the rest of this post, please click here.

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

H.G. Wells, Feminist Author

On February 8, 2015, I published the following post on Book Riot.

H.G. Wells, Feminist Author

H.G._Wells_,_c1890Author H.G. Wells (1866–1946) has left an indelible mark on popular culture through science fiction novels such as The Time Machine and The War of the Worlds. But a novel that was especially notorious during his lifetime had nothing to do with the future or with space. Instead, Wells caused a scandal with his feminist coming-of-age novel Ann Veronica.

If you wish to read the entire post, please click here.

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