THE QUIET AMERICAN
Graham Greene (William Heinemann, 1955; Vintage, 2004) ISBN: 9780099478393
So, ah, have you ever started reading a book you thought was about something completely different than it turned out to be? Because I was under some kind of misapprehension about The Quiet American before I started it. All I really knew about it was that it was made into a movie some time in the early to mid 2000s starring Michael Caine and Brendan Fraser. I only know this because I had a cousin involved in the picture, who at the time called his mother to say, “I’ve just met Michael Caine and you’re the only person I can think of who’ll care.” Because this was back before we all had decided Michael Caine was cool again when he started being Batman’s butler and that sort of thing.
I think I had the book confused with The English Patient and possibly some other book that doesn’t exist. Essentially, I knew the plot involved two men in love* with the same woman, but for some reason I believed it involved either a hospital or POWs. This is what a hazy memory for pop culture does to a person. I recommend you all study hard on what the Kardashians and real housewives are up to right now, for it may be tested later.
Blum, William (Common Courage Press, updated edition October 2008, ISBN 978-1567512526)
In 2009, President Barack Obama won the Nobel Peace Prize “for his extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples.” 
Many thought the prize undeserved – on the grounds that Obama appeared too much the enemy of peace. Had he won it, they asked, for prosecuting a war in Afghanistan? Or instead for his proposal to expand the United States military? Or for his plan to send “at least” two additional American combat brigades to Afghanistan? Continue reading