Russell J.T. Dyer

Writer & Editor

the works and musings of a writer in new orleans and milan, italy • Updated: Mar 27, 2015 • hits: 3121 for site today; 1 for page this week

Literary Criticisms

Book reviews of novels are typically written for readers in general or are criticisms of the novel from an artistic point of view. As a writer, I’m interested in a novel not only for its literary merits, but for its effectiveness in winning readers: getting them to buy the book, to start reading it, and to read it all of the way through after having started. I also admire how a book can affect readers, make them see the world differently, maybe change their lives, tell their friends about the book, discuss it, and remember it for years to come. The ability of a great novelist to do this is of interest to me. To that end, for my web site I sometimes write book reviews from a writer’s perspective.

My reviews can include several components besides general information about the novel being reviewed. To see a list of these components that I include in my reviews, see my the page on Literary Criticisms. I will probably change that list as I write more reviews and publish them, and I may deviate from the list for some novels.

The Heart of the Matter

My second literary review, it's about another of Graham Greene's novels, one of my favorites. It discusses a few aspects of the novel, focusing on the opening lines and the ending. Mainly, it discusses the interesting plot and includes some personal reflections related to writing.

The End of the Affair

This is my first literary book review for my web site. It's a review of the first Graham Greene book that I've read. It discusses the book from a writer's point of view, admiring his work and trying to learn from it.

My Books

Below are a few of my books that have been published and are still in print. Click on the book cover image to go to a site where you can buy each book.

In Search of Kafka

This is my first novel. It’s what I call a hi-tech comical thriller. It’s not about Kafka, incidentally. It’s about a computer programmer who inadvertently breaks into a Starbucks’ computer server and gets into trouble as a result. Throughout the novel he’s being hunted by Homeland Security.

MySQL in a Nutshell

This is a reference book (the second edition) which I wrote on the computer database software, MySQL. It’s not an interesting read, but it’s useful if you’re a MySQL software developer. If you’re interested in this topic, you should also check out my web site on MySQL Resources.

Learning MySQL and MariaDB

If you want to learn about MySQL and MariaDB, this is the book for you. It will be published late in 2014. It assumes you have no experience in developing databases.

MySQL Replication

This particular book on MySQL Replication is a tutorial and a reference book which I wrote on the subject.