What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby Default User BR » Thu Jun 27, 2013 4:38 pm

nisiprius wrote:
ruralavalon wrote:Murder on the Orient Express, by Agatha Christie.
??? Isn't the book entitled Murder on the Calais Coach?

Here's the UK first edition cover:
Image


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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby Sam I Am » Thu Jun 27, 2013 4:41 pm

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby RNJ » Sat Jun 29, 2013 9:48 pm

Just finished Everyman, by Philip Roth. A terrific, sad read.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby Blues » Sat Jun 29, 2013 10:14 pm

About to start "Revolutionary Summer" by Joseph Ellis.

Just finished "The Terrorists"...the final book in the Martin Beck series by Maj Sjöwall and Per Wahlöö.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby Bungo » Sat Jun 29, 2013 11:45 pm

I recently finished Money by Martin Amis, which was pretty amusing and very cleverly written. Now reading Innocent Blood by P.D. James.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby nisiprius » Sun Jun 30, 2013 9:32 am

Skating Where the Puck Was, by William J. Bernstein. I'm reading it a little late, but... EXCELLENT, every Boglehead should read it. Of course I say that because it feeds into my confirmation bias, but so what?

It confirms the feeling I've had for some time that chasing correlations is just as sterile as chasing performance.

It also confirms something I read once--in the context of inventions and entrepreneurial business ideas. It said you should run them past your friends, and "if everyone thinks it's a good idea, it probably isn't." You only get rewarded for actually taking risk. You don't get rewarded for things that you think can't really be risky because everyone is doing them.

I gained a key insight, which is that when investors flood into an asset class, not because of personal inspiration, but because "everyone" is recommending it, that is not only going to drive up the price and lower return, but also drive up correlation.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby Blues » Sun Jun 30, 2013 10:24 am

nisiprius wrote:Skating Where the Puck Was, by William J. Bernstein. I'm reading it a little late, but... EXCELLENT, every Boglehead should read it. Of course I say that because it feeds into my confirmation bias, but so what?


If you haven't also read "The Ages Of The Investor" as yet, I think you'll find it equally compelling. Bill always brings something of interest to the table.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby Igglesman » Sun Jun 30, 2013 11:19 am

The Dog Stars by Peter Heller.
I give it 4 1/2 stars our of 5. I do not usually like science fiction or postapocalyptic settings, but this book is the exception.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby Blues » Sun Jun 30, 2013 11:29 am

Igglesman wrote:The Dog Stars by Peter Heller.
I give it 4 1/2 stars our of 5. I do not usually like science fiction or postapocalyptic settings, but this book is the exception.


I rather enjoyed that one myself and was pleasantly surprised (as it's not my normal genre either).

I think it was offered as a freebie to borrow via Amazon Prime at the time, and may still be.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby BenBritt » Sun Jun 30, 2013 4:59 pm

A Higher Call by Adam Makos
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby Simplegift » Sun Jun 30, 2013 6:37 pm

Two recently-published books that are nice to read together:

The Riddle of the Labyrinth: The Quest to Crack an Ancient Code, by Margarit Fox.
Reads like a good detective novel, though it's a non-fiction account of the discovery and decipherment of Linear B, a Bronze Age writing system found in 1900 on clay tablets in Crete. The book presents fresh findings about the work of Alice Kober, a classics professor at Brooklyn College in the 1940s, who did most of the decipherment work, but alas died early, and a male rival later got all the credit.

Masters of the Word: How Media Shaped History from the Alphabet to the Internet, by William J. Bernstein.
A sweeping survey that starts with the birth of writing in Mesopotamia, extends through printing and media advances of the Industrial Revolution and concludes with communication breakthroughs of the digital age. Will appeal mostly to history lovers, but also to anyone who appreciates Bernstein's writing ability, his wit, and his facility with fascinating anecdotes to further his themes.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby ruralavalon » Sun Jun 30, 2013 8:10 pm

Vicksburg, 1863, by Winston Groom. Already 40% thru the book, and the seige has not yet begun. Vicksburg, in my opinion, was just as important as the more celebrated battle at Gettysburg which took place at the same time. Both ended on July 4, 1863.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby randomwalk » Mon Jul 01, 2013 9:52 am

I just finished Transatlantic by Colum McCann.

Now reading The Son by Philipp Meyer.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby chaz » Mon Jul 01, 2013 12:52 pm

"Winter Prey" by John Sandford.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby nisiprius » Mon Jul 01, 2013 5:32 pm

The Age of Edison: The Electric Light and the Invention of Modern America by Ernest Freeberg. Just started it, into Chapter 3, "Creative Destruction: Edison and the Gas Companies." Fascinating. Something interesting on every page. As good a piece of nonfiction as I've read in a long time. Technical depth, social depth. Not sure how much economics and finance there is going to be.

Finished the thriller, The Accounting by William Lashner. A little disappointing; too over the top, too hard to suspend disbelief. By the end, you are not sure whether the protagonist is going to make it or not, and I wasn't sure which I wanted to happen. I also kept being disturbed by the relatively small quantity of money involved--the story is set in the present day--and $200,000 just doesn't seem large enough live happily ever after on, even if he doesn't get himself killed by the guys he stole the money from.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby chaz » Mon Jul 01, 2013 6:00 pm

nisiprius wrote:The Age of Edison: The Electric Light and the Invention of Modern America by Ernest Freeberg. Just started it, into Chapter 3, "Creative Destruction: Edison and the Gas Companies." Fascinating. Something interesting on every page. As good a piece of nonfiction as I've read in a long time. Technical depth, social depth. Not sure how much economics and finance there is going to be.

Finished the thriller, The Accounting by William Lashner. A little disappointing; too over the top, too hard to suspend disbelief. By the end, you are not sure whether the protagonist is going to make it or not, and I wasn't sure which I wanted to happen. I also kept being disturbed by the relatively small quantity of money involved--the story is set in the present day--and $200,000 just doesn't seem large enough live happily ever after on, even if he doesn't get himself killed by the guys he stole the money from.

$200,000 is large enough to live happily ever after on if the protagonist is 95.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby MP173 » Tue Jul 02, 2013 9:16 am

Eleven Rings by Phil Jackson...

Zen, Buddism, Native American spiritualism and basketball in one book.

The guy was quite a manager of egos.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby steve roy » Tue Jul 02, 2013 10:11 am

ruralavalon wrote:Vicksburg, 1863, by Winston Groom. Already 40% thru the book, and the seige has not yet begun. Vicksburg, in my opinion, was just as important as the more celebrated battle at Gettysburg which took place at the same time. Both ended on July 4, 1863.


One of the best Civil War histories ever: "Reveille in Washington," all about D.C. From 1861 to 1865, how it changed from a sleepy Southern city to a major center. Won the National book award (as I remember) for 1941.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby shashiraj8 » Tue Jul 02, 2013 2:05 pm

Just finished - Bogleheads' Guide to Investing :happy

and have ordered

The Virtues of Selfishness - Ayn Rand and
The Road to Serfdrom - Friedrich Hayek

- shashi...
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby Valuethinker » Tue Jul 02, 2013 5:22 pm

ruralavalon wrote:Vicksburg, 1863, by Winston Groom. Already 40% thru the book, and the seige has not yet begun. Vicksburg, in my opinion, was just as important as the more celebrated battle at Gettysburg which took place at the same time. Both ended on July 4, 1863.


Probably true.

In that the South had to win Gettysburg fairly decisively to change the course of the war, and even then. As long as Gettysburg was anything approximating the bloody draw/ marginal southern defeat that it was, it left Lee in the same bad strategic position, and the North's growing strength would eventually find a general who could bring it to bear (ie Ulysses Samuel Grant).

Whereas Vicksburg was the key to the west, and once taken, the long road that led to Southern defeat was entered into. With victory in the west now possible, the North could focus fully on defeating the Army of Northern Virginia, and bringing and end to the thing. And Vicksburg would eventually lead to Sherman entering the south by the 'back door' and marching on Georgia, thus cutting off the heartlands of the rebellion. And Vicksburg would make the reputation of US Grant, and that would cause Lincoln to bring him East....
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby Valuethinker » Tue Jul 02, 2013 5:27 pm

nisiprius wrote:William Lashner, The Accounting. Off to a good start. (He wrote a great series of, I want to say detective novels, but we some other name--legal thrillers? about Victor Carl, who is a lawyer in Philadelphia but not a Philadelpia lawyer. He decided to end that series).

I finished Green Hazard by Manning Coles and liked it a lot and plan to dip into this series some more in future, but I'm giving it a rest for now. This is a series of comic spy thrillers that, originally and in this one anyway, concern a wisecracking British secret agent in wartime Germany. Some of it is distinctly black comedy. It's not intended to be taken seriously; amnesia and mistaken identity and all the rest of it. What I found a little hard to take in this one is that whereas in previous ones I am uncoupled from thinking too much of the reality--setting fire to a Zeppelin factory, for example. But in this one, he does things like sending out gift boxes of exploding cigars--very very serious exploding cigars that not only have a lethal blast but also spew incendiaries around the room--while all but snickering about the funny pranks they are pulling on Goering and Goebbels' people. That sort of thing, and tales of "resistance" movements, used to seem exhilarating when you only imagined these tactics being used by good guys against bad guys. Ha-ha guess what extra stuff we packed into this explosive device, what a joke it will be when the curtains and carpets catch fire, seem less amusing in these days of letter bombs, IEDs, and the Boston Marathon bombings.

Goebbels finally figures out that Hambledon's Professor Ulreth is a fraud. Hambledon's final escape from Germany is clever. He's been impersonating a brilliant chemist developing a remarkable new explosive, having switched allegiance to Germany after taking money from some Swedish businessmen and promising to give them the explosive. Naturally, the Swedish businessmen attempt to reach him at his secret laboratory in order to get either the formula for the explosive or their money back. Hambledon complains to the German higher-ups, who declare the Swedes persona non grata, escort them out of Germany, and send out an APB to the effect that any Swedes trying to contact Professor Ulreth are to be arrested and deported on sight. Hambledon and his co-worker then make their mistake by impersonating Swedes and telling cops they are businessmen trying to get their money back from Ulreth, and despite their indignant protest, escape from under Goebbels nose by having cops bump two high-priority passengers off an airline flight and forcing Hambledon into the plane.


You might like the film 'Pimpernel Smith' about an English archaeologist smuggling people out of Nazi Germany just before WW2-- a movie with Leslie Howard.

During the war, Howard was an RAF officer. His plane was flying the Polish PM in Exile to Gibraltar and was shot down by German fighters. To this day, debate rages whether the Soviet intelligence somehow knew of this, and tipped the Germans off (rather in the manner of the US P38s shooting down Admiral Yamomoto), with a mind to eliminating the leading non communist figure before they would have to deal with him in charge of a liberated Poland.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby Valuethinker » Tue Jul 02, 2013 5:29 pm

ruralavalon wrote:Murder on the Orient Express, by Agatha Christie.


I got bored of Christie (I actually like her Middle Eastern ones the best, her second husband was an archaeologist and she accompanied him on digs 'of all husbands, the archaeologist is best, as you grow older you grow more fascinating to him') but MOTE is a good one. The movie was excellent (was Peter Ustinov Poirot? He was in 'Death on the Nile'. David Suchet plays Poirot in the TV series).
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby Valuethinker » Tue Jul 02, 2013 5:34 pm

gerrym51 wrote:
nisiprius wrote:
ruralavalon wrote:Murder on the Orient Express, by Agatha Christie.
??? Isn't the book entitled Murder on the Calais Coach?


different countries different titles. some times Agatha Christie books can have 5-6 titles depending on what part of the world your in



Most obviously '10 little [I won't use the word]' was retitled '10 Little Indians' (originally 'And then there were none'). I didn't know that about MOTOE-- thank you.

http://www.fantasticfiction.co.uk/c/agatha-christie/

Agatha Christie also wrote romantic novels under the pseudonym Mary Westmacott. As well, she wrote four non-fiction books including an autobiography and an entertaining account of the many expeditions she shared with her archaeologist husband, Sir Max Mallowan.


http://www.fantasticfiction.co.uk/c/aga ... as-end.htm

The longest running play on the London West End is 'The Mousetrap' by Agatha Christie. Alas, I would say the second longest running play (Susan Hill's 'The Lady in Black') is better.

The person who I saw the Mousetrap with died at age 12 of Leukemia-- over 35 years ago. Isn't it funny what you suddenly remember.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby ER2023 » Tue Jul 02, 2013 8:04 pm

How to Retire Happy, Wild, and Free: Retirement wisdom that you won't get from your financial advisor. Ernie J. Zelinski

He also wrote The Joy of Not Working.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby hudson » Tue Jul 02, 2013 9:13 pm

In the three or four books I've read on Vietnam lately...the Americans had one serious and persistent enemy.
Platoon Leader: A Memoir of Command in Combat (A friend gave me a stack of "Infantry" magazines published by the Infantry School at Ft. Benning. They recommended this book....so I put it on my Amazon wish list years ago....and finally read it.)
by James R. McDonough
http://www.amazon.com/Platoon-Leader-Me ... 0891418008

The author was a Lieutenant....Commission....West Point...Class of 69...jump school, ranger school...jungle school...IOBC Fort Benning..4 months troop time in the 82d Airborne.

He served in the 173d Airborne in Vietnam in approximately June 1970...returned summer of 71...was platoon leader 6 months...

His job was a platoon leader; his platoon was usually 20 men....platoons are designed to be 43 strong. They defended a small village in Binh Dinh province of South Vietnam.
McDonough believed that the best way to operate was to do daily/nightly aggressive patrolling/ambushes.
The turnover in his platoon was very high. Everyone that survived with had been injured at least once.
He operated in jungles and rice patties. It seems as though he was well supported with supplies, medivac helicopters, and fire support.

Info about the author:
born in New York City, The United States March 14, 1946
James R. McDonough is is the former director of the Florida Office of Drug Control and the secretary of the Florida Department of Corrections from 2006 to 2008. A Brooklyn native, he graduated from both MIT and West Point and served as an Army officer in Vietnam. He rose to the rank of colonel before retiring and taking a series of national positions in drug law enforcement and security. He worked under the national drug czar before becoming the drug czar of Florida in 1999.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby steve roy » Tue Jul 02, 2013 10:34 pm

ruralavalon wrote:Vicksburg, 1863, by Winston Groom. Already 40% thru the book, and the seige has not yet begun. Vicksburg, in my opinion, was just as important as the more celebrated battle at Gettysburg which took place at the same time. Both ended on July 4, 1863.


General Grant's "Memoirs" cover Vicksburg succinctly, what Grant did and why he did it. One of the great books on the Civil War, written with great clarity by the most important man to write a history of that war.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby gkaplan » Tue Jul 02, 2013 10:42 pm

Valuethinker wrote:
ruralavalon wrote:Murder on the Orient Express, by Agatha Christie.


I got bored of Christie (I actually like her Middle Eastern ones the best, her second husband was an archaeologist and she accompanied him on digs 'of all husbands, the archaeologist is best, as you grow older you grow more fascinating to him') but MOTE is a good one. The movie was excellent (was Peter Ustinov Poirot? He was in 'Death on the Nile'. David Suchet plays Poirot in the TV series).


I believe it was Albert Finney who played Poirot. Great cast: Bergman, Widmark, Connery, Balsam, Perkins, just to name a few.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby randomwalk » Wed Jul 03, 2013 9:29 am

hudson wrote:In the three or four books I've read on Vietnam lately...the Americans had one serious and persistent enemy.
Platoon Leader: A Memoir of Command in Combat (A friend gave me a stack of "Infantry" magazines published by the Infantry School at Ft. Benning. They recommended this book....so I put it on my Amazon wish list years ago....and finally read it.)
by James R. McDonough
http://www.amazon.com/Platoon-Leader-Me ... 0891418008

The author was a Lieutenant....Commission....West Point...Class of 69...jump school, ranger school...jungle school...IOBC Fort Benning..4 months troop time in the 82d Airborne.

He served in the 173d Airborne in Vietnam in approximately June 1970...returned summer of 71...was platoon leader 6 months...

His job was a platoon leader; his platoon was usually 20 men....platoons are designed to be 43 strong. They defended a small village in Binh Dinh province of South Vietnam.
McDonough believed that the best way to operate was to do daily/nightly aggressive patrolling/ambushes.
The turnover in his platoon was very high. Everyone that survived with had been injured at least once.
He operated in jungles and rice patties. It seems as though he was well supported with supplies, medivac helicopters, and fire support.

Info about the author:
born in New York City, The United States March 14, 1946
James R. McDonough is is the former director of the Florida Office of Drug Control and the secretary of the Florida Department of Corrections from 2006 to 2008. A Brooklyn native, he graduated from both MIT and West Point and served as an Army officer in Vietnam. He rose to the rank of colonel before retiring and taking a series of national positions in drug law enforcement and security. He worked under the national drug czar before becoming the drug czar of Florida in 1999.


That book is often recommended to young Army officers. I read it the summer before I was commissioned and found it fascinating and informative.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby chaz » Wed Jul 03, 2013 11:07 am

randomwalk wrote:
hudson wrote:In the three or four books I've read on Vietnam lately...the Americans had one serious and persistent enemy.
Platoon Leader: A Memoir of Command in Combat (A friend gave me a stack of "Infantry" magazines published by the Infantry School at Ft. Benning. They recommended this book....so I put it on my Amazon wish list years ago....and finally read it.)
by James R. McDonough
http://www.amazon.com/Platoon-Leader-Me ... 0891418008

The author was a Lieutenant....Commission....West Point...Class of 69...jump school, ranger school...jungle school...IOBC Fort Benning..4 months troop time in the 82d Airborne.

He served in the 173d Airborne in Vietnam in approximately June 1970...returned summer of 71...was platoon leader 6 months...

His job was a platoon leader; his platoon was usually 20 men....platoons are designed to be 43 strong. They defended a small village in Binh Dinh province of South Vietnam.
McDonough believed that the best way to operate was to do daily/nightly aggressive patrolling/ambushes.
The turnover in his platoon was very high. Everyone that survived with had been injured at least once.
He operated in jungles and rice patties. It seems as though he was well supported with supplies, medivac helicopters, and fire support.

Info about the author:
born in New York City, The United States March 14, 1946
James R. McDonough is is the former director of the Florida Office of Drug Control and the secretary of the Florida Department of Corrections from 2006 to 2008. A Brooklyn native, he graduated from both MIT and West Point and served as an Army officer in Vietnam. He rose to the rank of colonel before retiring and taking a series of national positions in drug law enforcement and security. He worked under the national drug czar before becoming the drug czar of Florida in 1999.


That book is often recommended to young Army officers. I read it the summer before I was commissioned and found it fascinating and informative.

I was commissioned June 1952 - this book came out on AUGUST 1, 1971.
Chaz

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby hudson » Wed Jul 03, 2013 10:40 pm

Chaz, I think it was published in 2007...the book took place in 70 or 71. I was commissioned in late 70...OCS. Very few of my classmates made it to Vietnam....but I was surprised to learn (through Facebook) that several served after the obligatory 4 months of troop time.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby Valuethinker » Thu Jul 04, 2013 7:28 am

randomwalk wrote:
hudson wrote:In the three or four books I've read on Vietnam lately...the Americans had one serious and persistent enemy.
Platoon Leader: A Memoir of Command in Combat (A friend gave me a stack of "Infantry" magazines published by the Infantry School at Ft. Benning. They recommended this book....so I put it on my Amazon wish list years ago....and finally read it.)
by James R. McDonough
http://www.amazon.com/Platoon-Leader-Me ... 0891418008


The Vietnamese had fought the Chinese, and then the French, for their freedom. That's why it is known as 'The American War' ie merely one in a series. Their own analyses rated the Americans poorly as soldiers adapting to local conditions compared to the French (albeit superior in technology and firepower). The US was fighting patriots on their home ground, and a nation innured to endless hardship and suffering. Almost the perfect soldiers, really. With modern technological developments like mortars, rocket launchers and the AK47, which turned a small fire team into the equivalent of a platoon or company in earlier wars, they became almost unbeatable given their resourcefulness and determination. The West lost the permanent technological and organizational advantage which had allowed it to overrun the world in the 1700s and 1800s.

Armies tend to prepare to fight the last war, so the US went into Vietnam configured to refight Korea and WW2-- airpower and armour intensive, with the addition of helicopter airmobility. In very different terrain with a different opponent. It's rare (Kuwait 1990) that you get to fight the war you prepared for, and even when you do (France, 1914-1915, where the British had been prepared by the Boer War of 1900-1903) it often turns into something very different. The battle tactics of 1862 worked well against smoothbore armed redcoats in 1782, but not as well against blues and grays armed with rifled muskets and minie bullets-- the effective range of shooting had trebled to 300 yards, thus a defender could manage 9-12 accurate volleys against an attacking line, rather than 2-3. (best described in The Killer Angels by Shaara).

The author was a Lieutenant....Commission....West Point...Class of 69...jump school, ranger school...jungle school...IOBC Fort Benning..4 months troop time in the 82d Airborne.

He served in the 173d Airborne in Vietnam in approximately June 1970...returned summer of 71...was platoon leader 6 months...

His job was a platoon leader; his platoon was usually 20 men....platoons are designed to be 43 strong. They defended a small village in Binh Dinh province of South Vietnam.
McDonough believed that the best way to operate was to do daily/nightly aggressive patrolling/ambushes.
The turnover in his platoon was very high. Everyone that survived with had been injured at least once.
He operated in jungles and rice patties. It seems as though he was well supported with supplies, medivac helicopters, and fire support.

Info about the author:
born in New York City, The United States March 14, 1946
James R. McDonough is is the former director of the Florida Office of Drug Control and the secretary of the Florida Department of Corrections from 2006 to 2008. A Brooklyn native, he graduated from both MIT and West Point and served as an Army officer in Vietnam. He rose to the rank of colonel before retiring and taking a series of national positions in drug law enforcement and security. He worked under the national drug czar before becoming the drug czar of Florida in 1999.


That book is often recommended to young Army officers. I read it the summer before I was commissioned and found it fascinating and informative.


McDounough sounds like he was very lucky (or a very charismatic leader).

By 1970 officers who were too aggressive in pursuing contact with the enemy got routinely fragged. Creighton Abrams' tactics of 'sweeps' led to practices like units going out of the wire, and bedding down so close to the firebase that they actually go feedback on their radio transmissions (picking up their own voices on the base radio)! The Cincinnattus book 'Self Destruction' is quite good on this, also Edward King 'Death of an Army'.

By 1970, the US Army in Vietnam was really beginning to struggle with signifciant racial, morale and discipline problems, as well as at times the complete breakdown of same (My Lai). However no doubt some units (The Americal Division at My Lai) much worse than others. Airborne being elite perhaps less so. I believe the USMC also had fewer discipline problems, although 'Matterhorn' (below) would give you a different feel, and Marlantes was there, and decorated.

Karl Marlantes 2 books 'Matterhorn' (fiction) and 'What it is like to go to war' (non fiction) are very good. 'Dispatches' (Despatches here ;-)) by Michael Herr is also good (slightly earlier, most of it) for capturing the surreal flavour of the war. Philip Caputo's 'A Rumor of War' on the early days of the US ground force commitment. A recent book I read which I enjoyed very much was Juris Jurvics 'Red Flags' about a military investigation unit-- again novel based on personal experience.

Joe Haldeman wrote a book about his year in the Combat Engineers in Vietnam, Larry Heineman wrote 'War Year' about the Armored Cavalry, and there is that novel 'The Short Timers' that Full Metal Jacket was based upon-- all good.

Tim O'Brien I find more difficult-- more literary and surreal eg 'Going After Ciacatto'.

.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby chaz » Thu Jul 04, 2013 2:28 pm

"The Clinic" by Jonathan Kellerman.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby ruralavalon » Thu Jul 04, 2013 7:36 pm

Beowulf, by an anonymous Anglo-Saxon of 1000 - 1200 years ago, Gummere translation.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby goldendad » Fri Jul 05, 2013 12:10 am

'Charlie Wilson's War' by George Crile
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby Valuethinker » Fri Jul 05, 2013 5:53 am

goldendad wrote:'Charlie Wilson's War' by George Crile


Steve Coll wrote the definitive book about America and Afghanistan pre 9-11.

http://www.amazon.com/Ghost-Wars-Afghan ... fghanistan
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby Christine_NM » Fri Jul 05, 2013 3:22 pm

Classic chick lit: House of Mirth, by Edith Wharton

New chick lit: Light Between Oceans, by M. L. Stedman

I'm not letting my brain rot, though. Am taking a MOOC from Coursera in Epigenetics -- trying to learn a whole new vocabulary in a few weeks is a challenge.
Savor the moment.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby dh » Fri Jul 05, 2013 4:04 pm

Many years ago I was fascinated how Leonard Woolf was portrayed in the movie "The Hours." I am curious to learn more about his decision to suspend his work to create a publishing house for Virginia's work (and numerous other authors). I am approximately 50 pages into "Downhill All The Way: An Autobiography of the Years 1919-1939" by Leonard Woolf.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby nisiprius » Fri Jul 05, 2013 4:13 pm

Since I've read and liked many of the books mentioned by Larry Swedroe in What to Put On Your Summer Reading List, I'm going to make a mental note to try some of his suggestions.

Probably "Moloka'i" by Alan Brennert, because I was always fascinated/horrified by Jack London's Molokai-related story, Good-Bye, Jack, which you can read online here (I need to set my browser "view--text encoding" option to "Western (ISO Latin-1)" to get rid of some garbage characters that otherwise appear).
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby jginseattle » Fri Jul 05, 2013 8:18 pm

To Hell on a Fast Horse, by Mark Lee Gardner. A dual biography of Billy the Kid and Pat Garrett.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby Fallible » Fri Jul 05, 2013 11:48 pm

Managed to tear myself away from "Hitchhiker" author Douglas Adams (I'm now on Life, the Universe and Everything) long enough to finally read Sal Kahn's very good The One World Schoolhouse . So it was a happy surprise to see an Adams quote leading to the first chapter: "There is an art, or rather, a knack to flying. The knack lies in learning how to throw yourself at the ground and miss. Pick a nice day and try it." (From The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy.) Kahn, a former hedge fund analyst, founded the online Kahn Academy to deliver what he calls a "free, world-class education for anyone, anywhere." What most impressed me about him was his deep desire to teach, to discover and nurture the "natural bent" of the child, what he sees as the "proper goal" of education.

BTW, there have been some good threads on this forum about Kahn Academy: viewtopic.php?f=11&t=111934
and
viewtopic.php?f=11&t=71324&p=1000008
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby ruralavalon » Sat Jul 06, 2013 10:33 am

Revolutionary Summer: The Birth of American Independence, by Joehph J. Ellis.

Covers related political and military developments in the period immediately before and after the Declaration of Independence, from March 1776 (when the British evacuate Boston) through October 1776 (when the Continental Army flees New York).
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby chaz » Sun Jul 07, 2013 4:18 pm

"Once We Were Brothers" by Ronald Balson.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby ruralavalon » Sun Jul 07, 2013 5:37 pm

Death on the Nile, by Agatha Christie.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby jebmke » Sun Jul 07, 2013 5:50 pm

Ratification: The People Debate the Constitution, 1787-1788, by Pauline Maier
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby nisiprius » Sun Jul 07, 2013 6:08 pm

America Aflame: How the Civil War Created a Nation, by David Goldfield.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby Texas hold em71 » Sun Jul 07, 2013 10:46 pm

Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby Blues » Mon Jul 08, 2013 8:58 am

"The Handmaid's Tale" by Margaret Atwood.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby randomwalk » Mon Jul 08, 2013 1:23 pm

I just finished The Son by Philipp Meyer.

Now reading The Flamethrowers by Rachel Kushner.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby Bungo » Mon Jul 08, 2013 4:15 pm

Just started V.S. Naipaul's A House for Mr. Biswas. Perhaps the most striking feature of the narrative thus far is that the protagonist is referred to as Mr. Biswas even when he is a small child.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby nonnie » Mon Jul 08, 2013 7:41 pm

MP173 wrote-- in "Method of Selecting: What Book are you reading now?"
"I am with you in that I like American and contemporary.

Try Greg Isles. Most of his are set in Mississippi. I enjoy regional novels in that it gives me a feel for the area. James Lee Burke's novels paint quite a picture of Louisiana, don't they?

I believe Block is finish with Keller, based on the last one I read "Hit and Run" as he "retired" to New Orleans.

Did you ever read any John McDonald series of Travis McGee? Granted it is not contemporary (set in the 60's/70s) but these were excellent. "

I've reserved a few Greg Iles-- I think that's who you are suggesting. I may have actually seen him perform (-depends on when he joined ) in SF as he was-- their last performance was in 2012- a member of the literary musical group "The Rock Bottom Remainders"- ( includes authors Dave Barry, Ridley Pearson, Stephen King, Scott Turow, Amy Tan, Mitch Albom, Roy Blount, Jr., Matt Groening, and James McBride).

I think you're right about Keller-- I remembered feeling that way but not why. Travis McGee-- now that brings back memories! Ever read any Stephen Greenleaf? His mystery series has concluded but I think I saw a short story or something available in e-book.
http://www.mysteryfile.com/Greenleaf/greenleaf.html

I used to really like William Tapply and his Brady Coyne novels. He also co-wrote a few with someone whose name I can't remember now.

http://www.williamgtapply.com/

Keep those recommendations coming!

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