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Susan暑假作文读后感(5)-- 马可.波罗(极不喜欢的一本书)

 

马可.波罗

 

Susan 小哭译


    我们都知道游戏“马可.波罗”,对吧?叫“马可”的人闭上眼睛,喊“马可?”,然后剩下的人必须喊“波罗!”。他们一直这样不停地喊,直到叫“马可”的人顺着声音找到了叫“波罗”的人。然后被找到的人当“马可”,这是一个非常有趣的游戏,特别是人多的时候。我玩过很多次。有时候我也会想,这世界上谁叫“马可.波罗”呢?

不过通常来讲,我对“马可.波罗”的好奇心也就是一小会儿的事儿。我问过朋友们,他们都耸耸肩,说他们也不知道,然后我就把这事儿给忘了。直到有一天,妈妈从图书馆帮我借回了一本关于马可.波罗的书,标题就是“马可.波罗”。

这书是一本信息量很大的非虚构类书,它和妈妈为我借回的一堆非虚构类书放在一起。我对这书的标题有点失望。它看起来确实很枯燥,并且没有创意。我确信有着数不清的书都叫“马可.波罗”。我希望副标题能够有趣儿一点,而不是什么“伟大探险家的历史”。作者应该加入“一个错把老虎当成有着黑、白、橙色条纹的狮子的男人”。那肯定会比平淡的“马可.波罗”更能吸引眼球。

除了它那乏味的标题外,这本书看上去似乎非常地有趣儿。它是一个大开本的书,大概有三十页,比我的手提电脑的长宽尺寸都大。书的前后封皮是硬皮的,但仅仅尺寸大和精装这两个特点并不是它看起来多么有趣的地方。它之所以令人印象相当地深刻,在于它的封面像打开来的两扇门一样,门中间还挂着一把做样子的锁。封面的背景是深蓝色的,上面有着地图的阴影,前景是象被随手放在地图上的罗盘和照片。它们看起来非常地有立体感,好像我可以从书中把照片拿起来一样。书的里面,有很多我可以打开的盖纸,盖纸里面是很多关于某个话题的信息。盖纸形状各异,有的像杂志,有的像岩石,有的像钱币……这些都使得整本书看上去非常地生动有趣儿。

书的实际内容怎么样呢?嗯……那可真难讲。我的意思是,它并非十分糟糕或说枯燥,但它也绝不是那种读来有趣的书。我想问题可能在于里面的信息量太大了。当刚开始读到马可.波罗一生的简介时,我确实很想知道他的故事,因为他的生活似乎是我所听说过的最有趣的生活。然而,当我进一步读下去时,却被大量莫明其妙的时间和地点给砸晕了。才读了一半,我就读到了太多没用的信息了。最后我彻底地迷糊了,不知道什么时候是什么时候,谁是谁,什么是什么了…….

不仅仅是日期和数字令我困惑,虽然那也是一个很大的原因。我更困惑的是这本书有着太多没用的信息。这本书没有什么对于马可.波罗的介绍,倒更像是关于“马可.波罗所遇到的那些地方、人和事儿的历史、文化以及细节的介绍”。所有那些漂亮的盖纸和图片都和马可.波罗无关(除了马可.波罗曾经遇到或听到过它们之外),并且这些内容甚至都没有提到马可.波罗!如果我想了解亚洲历史,我会选择一本亚洲历史书!我根本不关心这类常识----发酵的马奶储藏在陶器罐里,喝的时候用碗一个传给一个!我想知道有关马可.波罗的事情,可这本书三分之二的内容都跟他无关!

另一个令人沮丧的事情是(绝不是太多没用的信息这一点),这本书根本没有告诉我们马可.波罗这个人的什么事儿!所有我知道的有关他的事情就是他的旅行:他去了那儿,做了什么,然后就没了。我一点也不知道他到底是个什么样的人!我对他的想法一无所知!这本书没有涉及任何我想知道的有关一个人的信息!太令人沮丧了吧?所有没用的东西都留着了,所有重要的东西都去掉了。毫无疑问,如果有人现在问我什么关于马可.波罗的事儿的话,我可以告诉他们很多事实,但就是没有一丁点儿是关于他这个人本身的。

读完这本书后,我感觉很坏。我问自己:“我刚刚在那东西上面花了我宝贵的生命中的45分钟了吗?”太多的信息了,我连一半儿都不可能记住,而我记住的另一半儿则足以教会我远离那种看起来很华丽、实际上很乏味的巨大硬皮书。我期待着读一本有关马可.波罗的书,而不是世界历史!这本书对于13世纪生活在欧洲的那些几乎一点也不知道欧洲以外的任何事情、而又非常地想知道的人们倒挺不错!但对我可不行。一:我不在欧洲;二:我不生活在13世纪;三:我根本不关心马奶是怎么发酵的!

好了,可能前两点扯远了,但是第三点却是真的。我确实不关心这本书里的大部分信息。我不是说这是一本坏书,有些人可能会喜欢它。我不讨厌它,我只是没有像我以为的那样去喜欢它而已。这本书不应该叫做“马可.波罗”,它应该叫做“马可.波罗,和世界重要历史”。如果你喜欢学习世界重要历史的话……那去吧,去读这本书吧。

 

【小哭介绍背景】Susan的这篇小文我印象非常地深刻!!我喜欢她这篇的写作风格,虽然还是明显地罗嗦。其实这是她较早给我的一篇读后感,里面充满了她对书的标题、外表和内容的主观感受。她对标题的强调,让我更加明白为什么存在着“标题党”了,事实上,“标题党”有本事抓住读者的心。另外,我非常认同她对内容的看法,并且无比地遗憾于儿童科普读物会被写成这个样子!!从在图书馆见到这本漂亮的书时起,我就对Susan会喜欢这本书充满了信心。不过我也没有翻开来认真地读过,所以,搞得很乌龙。我正在努力地让她阅读更多的非虚构类书呢。我知道图书馆有着她这辈子都读不完的虚构类书等着她去读,那些书还都非常地有趣儿,她也还没有看够。可是,我也知道是时候去推动她一下了。如果我现在不趁着她刚到阅读高级班的热乎劲儿还没消退,还能强迫自己去读一些似乎“高级”点的非虚构书,那就更难找机会去推动她了。

记得当时好像借了三本有关马可.波罗的书回来,大概这本外形太吸引人了,所以她选了来读。其实也许另外两本并不是同样的风格,可是我当时也没有认真琢磨过这事儿,总之在她交上来一篇我觉得还算不错的读后感之后就没再跟踪了。其实我当时应该看看另外两本的写作风格。不管怎么样吧,我又找到下一步的小目标了——找本好一点的关于马可.波罗的书回来。我不相信这么有趣的一个人,就没有一本书能够把他的传记写得好玩点的?我会花点时间去查找的!!事实上,如果书的风格真如Susan所描述的那样,我也不喜欢读。

我记得读过李开复的一本书,其中提到阅读这个问题。他说可能要花一半的时间用来找到正确的书,另一半才是读书。而我,一直以来,都在找书这件事情上参与着Susan的阅读进程。她小的时候,基本上所有的书都是我给她找来的,慢慢地大了,我基本上不管了。特别是她现在有KINDLE了,我甚至根本都不知道她都借了什么东西回来读!!!有两次我们发现她跟我们拥抱晚安后偷偷躲在被窝里打手电看KINDLE,当时可把我们给气坏了!!!Susan爸爸查看了一下,说就是本小说而已。我对这事儿一直都不能理解,我们从不反对她读书,读什么也给了自由,为什么她还要打手电读呢?她的理由就是觉得那样比坐着舒服,唉!那次我把她的KINDLE给没收了一个星期。最近看她写的读后感,才意识到在阅读的道路上,她已经非常地独立了。能够看看我给找回来的几本科普书,那算是给妈妈面子了。她今天早晨还告诉我,KINDLE的借书渠道有两种,一个是图书馆,一个是亚马逊。但是电子阅读不在他们阅读课的统计阅读量里头,所以,她说那个开学以来阅读量大过她的韩裔男生,不一定是真的大过她,因为她还抽空读了一些电子书呢。听后我心里一惊,故作镇定地说,可是亚马逊上的一些书,也不一定是适合青少年看的啊。Susan则表现得很淡定,说有些是吧,但也还行。可能,我还要抽空儿跟她谈谈读书的事儿,问问她最近读的书有哪些类型,弄几个书名来查查她的阅读范围。其实已经不可能强迫什么了,只能疏通和引导了。

对了,Susan开篇提到的“马可.波罗”游戏,是孩子们在游泳池中非常非常常见的玩法!!!当时她还没有进游泳队的时候,我们在摩顿的YMCA开放时间去玩水,泳池里随便相识的几个孩子就会玩起这个游戏。后来她参加了二年半的游泳队,第一年的年度总结庆祝那天,最后一项是大家在游泳池里随便玩,这群大大小小的孩子们又在池子里玩起了“马可. 波罗”的游戏。唉,一说游泳,我就觉得伤心。我那么给Susan创造锻炼身体的机会,除了游泳她一项也做不了,最后游泳总算是可以跟着玩了,她还非得要放弃,理由就是人家游得太快了,她跟着太累。现在她没有任何的运动项目,一想这事儿我就感到无奈。我们经济紧张的那阵子,我舍不得钱办健身卡, 也舍不得钱找临时保姆,自己只能靠着天天推着小宝到处走当做运动。可就算是那样,也没有舍不得给她参加游泳队。如今条件慢慢地变好了,健身房也给她办了年卡,可是她却一个月都不跟我去一趟。她在家时,每次我去都会叫她一声,可是每次她都说忙。但是每周去参加教会的活动,她可从来也没有因为忙而放弃过,甚至有的时候会因为一段时间没有读经祷告而在一家人饭前祷告时不停地检讨。以前我强迫她去锻炼,她死命不去,家里因此鸡飞狗跳。现在我只是叫她一声而已,家里倒是安静了,可我内心里却一点也安静不了了。唉,老妈。

附上英文原文:

 

Marco Polo

We all know the game Marco Polo, right? The “Marco” person closes their eyes, shouts out “Marco?”, and the rest of the people in the game have to shout out “Polo!”. They keep on doing that until the “Marco” person manages to tag someone following that person’s voice, and then the person that’s tagged becomes the “Marco”. It’s a fun game, especially if there’s a lot of people. I’ve played it a lot. And sometimes, I’ve wondered, who in the world is Marco Polo?

 

Well, as usual with my wonderings, I wondered about it for a while, asks my friends, they shrug and tell me they have no idea, and I forget about it. Until my mom checks out a library book for me about Marco Polo, titled “Marco Polo”.

 

The book was an informational non-fiction book, and it came in the same pile as all the other informational non-fiction books my mom checked out for me. I was a bit diasapointed in the title. It sounded really boring and unoriginal. I’m sure there are countless other books out there titled “Marco Polo”. I wish its subtitle was a bit more interesting. Instead of just “History’s Great Adventurer”, the author should’ve added “and the man who mistook a tiger for a big lion with black, white, and orange stripes”. That would’ve been way more hooking than the usual “Marco Polo”.

 

The book looked very interesting, though, despite its boring title. It was a big book, about thirty very thick pages, and bigger than my laptop widthwise and lengthwise. But that wasn’t what made it look so interesting: the front and back covers were hardcover. With a size that big and in hardcover, the book looked pretty impressive. Its front cover openes like a door, with two flaps, and a fake picture of a lock in the middle. The dark blue background and shadowing images of maps on it, and campasses and pictures lies on the forground, making it look as if they were scattered on the map. It looked very 3 dimensional, as if I could just pick the pictures right of of the book. And inside the book, there were lots of of flaps that I can open that have more information in them about certain subjects. The flaps were sometimes in the shape of a journal, or a piece of rock, or money… that made the whole book look very interesting and realistic.

 

What about the actual content of the book? Well… that’s really hard to describe. I mean, it wasn’t really bad or boring, but it wasn’t really fun to read either. I think the problem was, there was too much information. When I read the short summary of Marco Polo’s life at the beginning of the book, I really wanted to know more about his story, because his life has got to be the most interesting life story I’ve ever heard. However, once I started reading further, the book started bombarding me with dates and geographical places I have no idea about. There was so much unessasary information that by the time I was halfway throught the book, I was completely confused about when’s when, who’s who, and what’s what.

 

It wasn’t just the dates and numbers that confused me, though that was a big reason. It was also the unessassary information. The book was less about ‘Marco Polo’ than it was about ‘the histories and cultures and detailed information about the places, people, and things that Marco Polo encountered’. All the pretty flaps and pictures were about things that have almost nothing to do with Marco Polo (other than the fact that Marco Polo encountered or heard about them), and most of them doesn’t even mention Marco Polo in them! If I want to learn about Asian history, I would’ve picked up an Asian history book! I don’t care about the fact that fermented mare’s milk was stored in ceramic jugs and drunk from bowls that were often passed hand to hand! I want to know about Marco Polo, and two thirds of the information in this book have nothing to with him!

 

Another really frustrating thing was (other than the too many useless information), the book doesn’t really tell us about Marco Polo as a person. All I know about him are his travels: he went there, did that, the end. I have no idea what he’s like as a person! I don’t know anything about his thoughts! All the stuff about a person that matters to me is excluded in this book! How frustrating is that? All the useless stuff was included, the important stuff excluded. Sure, now when people ask me about Marco Polo, I’ve got a lot of facts to tell them, but nothing really tells me about him as a person.

 

After I finished the book, I felt awful. My thoughts were something like: “I just spend a whole forty-five minutes of my precious life on that?” There was so much information, I’m not going to be able to remember half of them, though the half I do remember would be more than enough to teach me to stay away from huge hardcover books that look ornate and pretty but are actually boring. I was looking forward to reading a story about Marco Polo, not the history of the world! This book would’ve been great for those European dudes back in the thirteenth century who knew hardly anything about what’s outside of Europe and really wants to know more, but not for me. One: I’m not European. Two: I don’t live in the thirteenth century. And three: I can’t care less about how mare’s milk is fermented.

 

Okay, maybe that first two was a bit of a stretch, but the last one’s true. I really don’t care about most of the information in the book. I’m not saying it’s a bad book, some people may like it. I don’t hate it, I just didn’t enjoy it as much as I thought I would’ve. The book shouldn’t’ve been titled “Marco Polo, History’s Great Adventurer”. It should’ve been titled “Marco Polo, and the World’s Great History ”. If you like to learn about the world’s great history… go ahead, and read the book.

 

 

 

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