What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby Fallible » Tue Dec 18, 2012 9:59 pm

ruralavalon wrote:What do You care What Other People Think?, by Richard P. Feynman. Includes an interesting discussion of the investigation of the space shuttle Challenger disaster.


I'm responding again to this because I remembered liking the book so much when it came out that I decided to reread it. I first read it for the Challenger investigation and the way Feynman was treated by some commission members (though he had some powerful allies). This time I loved the whole book and everything about Feynman and realized how much he was like Einstein, brilliant, endlessly questioning, and talented in so many areas.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby Riprap » Tue Dec 18, 2012 11:16 pm

Bitter Brew The Rise and Fall of Anheuser-Busch and America's Kings of Beer by William Knoedelseder

A pretty decent chronicle of the Busch Family. :sharebeer It has been said that family businesses usually don't survive past the third generation. The Busch family somehow manages to pass that mark but control eventually slips away from the family under the poor leadership of a Busch scion. Plenty of family dysfunction.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby randomwalk » Thu Dec 20, 2012 11:22 am

I just finished Extremely Close and Incredibly Loud by Jonathan Safran Foer.

Still reading Predictably Irrational by Dan Ariely.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby Valuethinker » Thu Dec 20, 2012 1:09 pm

Robert The Bruce wrote:In this case, our hero meets up, in-country, with a security group, one of whom is secretly in the Canadian CIA which comes in handy when these freelancers need to order up a gunship or a helicopter evac.


The CSIS? Canadian Security and Intelligence Service? To liken it to the CIA is alas, flattery.

Whose main claim to fame is their ability to cover up when they have sc-wed up, I think.

You might like Gerald Seymour's thrillers OR the original Quiller Memorandum etc.


http://www.fantasticfiction.co.uk/h/ada ... randum.htm

http://www.fantasticfiction.co.uk/h/adam-hall/

http://www.fantasticfiction.co.uk/s/ger ... s-game.htm

http://www.fantasticfiction.co.uk/s/ger ... n-sand.htm

http://www.fantasticfiction.co.uk/s/ger ... e-bomb.htm
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby ruralavalon » Thu Dec 20, 2012 11:17 pm

The Signal and the Noise: Why Some Predictions Fail - and Others Don't, by Nate Silver.

Interesting discusion of methods of prediction in sports, gambling, weather, climate, politics, etc.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby gkaplan » Fri Dec 21, 2012 10:18 am

The Trespasser by Paul Doiron. This is the second in a mystery series about Mike Bowditch, a Maine game warden. I read the first book when it came out several years ago, and it was one of my favorite reads that year.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby fickle » Fri Dec 21, 2012 11:21 am

Oooh, a book thread.

I'm reading The Snake and the Fox: An Introduction to Logic by Mary Haight
and
Prelude to Mathematics by W.W.Sawyer, a man I dearly wish I'd met.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby Fallible » Fri Dec 21, 2012 1:54 pm

fickle wrote:Oooh, a book thread....


Just wanted to say that "oooh" was my first response (along with "wow") when I discovered this thread a couple years ago as a forum newbie. I still think it's one of the best threads. Welcome!

P.S. It's always nice to hear what readers think of their books so others can decide whether they'd also like to read it.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby ruralavalon » Fri Dec 21, 2012 4:01 pm

The Dain Curse, by Dashiell Hammett.

Re-reading another classic noir dectective story, by the author of The Maltese Falcon. Young woman surrounded by murders of her father, step-mother, physician and husband all within a few weeks. I don't recall who done it, so its like reading it for the first time. Fun :) .
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby ruralavalon » Fri Dec 21, 2012 4:04 pm

Fallible wrote:
ruralavalon wrote:What do You care What Other People Think?, by Richard P. Feynman. Includes an interesting discussion of the investigation of the space shuttle Challenger disaster.


I'm responding again to this because I remembered liking the book so much when it came out that I decided to reread it. I first read it for the Challenger investigation and the way Feynman was treated by some commission members (though he had some powerful allies). This time I loved the whole book and everything about Feynman and realized how much he was like Einstein, brilliant, endlessly questioning, and talented in so many areas.


Any recommendations for other books by Feynman?
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby chaz » Fri Dec 21, 2012 4:59 pm

"The Associate" by John Grisham.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby lloydbraun » Fri Dec 21, 2012 5:15 pm

"Exorbitant Privilege" by Barry Eichengreen (Economist and Political Scientist at UC Berkeley) , which is a brief history of the dollar's role as the reserve currency. His arguments related to the relationship of the dollar and the pound in the early 20th century and the dollar and the renminbi in the early 21st century are very interesting.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby Bungo » Fri Dec 21, 2012 5:20 pm

ruralavalon wrote:Any recommendations for other books by Feynman?

If you want a taste of his legendary Lectures on Physics, check out Six Easy Pieces, which consists of the six easiest lectures, very accessible to the general reader.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby linguini » Fri Dec 21, 2012 5:30 pm

Splitting my time between George RR Martin's A Clash of Kings and Niccolo Machiavelli's Discourses on the First Decade of Titus Livius.

ruralavalon wrote:The Signal and the Noise: Why Some Predictions Fail - and Others Don't, by Nate Silver.

Interesting discusion of methods of prediction in sports, gambling, weather, climate, politics, etc.


How are you liking it? I was planning on reading it at some point, but I have a pretty huge queue of books to read and I'm not sure where it should fit. Is it good enough that I should bump it up to the beginning of my queue?
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby linguini » Fri Dec 21, 2012 5:32 pm

Bungo wrote:
ruralavalon wrote:Any recommendations for other books by Feynman?

If you want a taste of his legendary Lectures on Physics, check out Six Easy Pieces, which consists of the six easiest lectures, very accessible to the general reader.


Also, I don't know if you've already read it, but Surely You're Joking Mister Feynman is very similar to What Do You Care What Other People Think?
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby fickle » Fri Dec 21, 2012 8:31 pm

Fallible wrote:
fickle wrote:Oooh, a book thread....


P.S. It's always nice to hear what readers think of their books so others can decide whether they'd also like to read it.


Well, if this is the spot for book junkies, any graphic novel type books for kids on the world of finance? (I know this is a long shot....)? Something less polemic than Whatever Happened to Penny Candy?

How do you teach your kids about economics and finance?
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby Fallible » Fri Dec 21, 2012 9:16 pm

fickle wrote:
Fallible wrote:
fickle wrote:Oooh, a book thread....


P.S. It's always nice to hear what readers think of their books so others can decide whether they'd also like to read it.


Well, if this is the spot for book junkies, any graphic novel type books for kids on the world of finance? (I know this is a long shot....)? Something less polemic than Whatever Happened to Penny Candy?

How do you teach your kids about economics and finance?


It will depend on your children's ages of course, but I think the best recommendation for the appropriate graphic novel on financial literacy for kids should come from your librarian.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby Fallible » Fri Dec 21, 2012 9:39 pm

ruralavalon wrote:
Fallible wrote:
ruralavalon wrote:What do You care What Other People Think?, by Richard P. Feynman. Includes an interesting discussion of the investigation of the space shuttle Challenger disaster.


I'm responding again to this because I remembered liking the book so much when it came out that I decided to reread it. I first read it for the Challenger investigation and the way Feynman was treated by some commission members (though he had some powerful allies). This time I loved the whole book and everything about Feynman and realized how much he was like Einstein, brilliant, of course, but also endlessly questioning, and talented in so many areas.


Any recommendations for other books by Feynman?


If you haven't seen them already, check out the good recommendations here by OPs bungo and linguini.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby fickle » Sat Dec 22, 2012 12:13 am

Fallible wrote:
It will depend on your children's ages of course, but I think the best recommendation for the appropriate graphic novel on financial literacy for kids should come from your librarian.


Sadly, most books I want I have to get through interlibrary loan. Additionally, our library is following a trend I hear lamented on education boards: it is more and more about computers and DVDs than books. Our local staff is tech savvy, but certainly not the Miss Smith I remember from my childhood.

I'm looking for the 4th-6th grade level, but I'd take less storyboard books for older kids if any has seen a good one. Surely we have some parents here who have made a point of teaching their kids about economics and finance!
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby Fallible » Sat Dec 22, 2012 12:58 am

fickle wrote:
Fallible wrote:
It will depend on your children's ages of course, but I think the best recommendation for the appropriate graphic novel on financial literacy for kids should come from your librarian.


Sadly, most books I want I have to get through interlibrary loan. Additionally, our library is following a trend I hear lamented on education boards: it is more and more about computers and DVDs than books. Our local staff is tech savvy, but certainly not the Miss Smith I remember from my childhood.

I'm looking for the 4th-6th grade level, but I'd take less storyboard books for older kids if any has seen a good one. Surely we have some parents here who have made a point of teaching their kids about economics and finance!


I'm sorry your library can't help. There may not be any graphic novels here, but try this link for some leads: http://www.bing.com/search?q=bogleheads ... orm=APMCS1
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby jaj2276 » Sat Dec 22, 2012 11:36 pm

Hitless Wonder by Joe Oestrich. A story about minor league rock-and-roll. I don't have any natural talent for musical instruments (or even a singing voice), but oh how I wish I was a rock star. Almost Famous is almost my favorite movie (even though it's not an "outstanding" movie).
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby MP173 » Sun Dec 23, 2012 7:39 pm

Just finished "The Burgler Who Traded Ted Williams" by Lawrence Block.

Currently "Mad River" by John Sandford.

Also casually reading "Led Zeppelin FAQ" by George Case. This is a nuts and bolts book about the band answering questions such as "what kind of instruments and amps, musical influences, plagerism (which songs), women (names), studio locations, etc. Really interesting book.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby gkaplan » Sun Dec 23, 2012 8:23 pm

Rogue Island by Bruce DeSilva.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby randomwalk » Mon Dec 24, 2012 2:49 pm

I just finished Predictably Irrational by Dan Ariely.

Now reading Clarence Darrow by John Farrell.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby gd » Tue Dec 25, 2012 6:02 pm

linguini wrote:Splitting my time between George RR Martin's A Clash of Kings and Niccolo Machiavelli's Discourses on the First Decade of Titus Livius.

ruralavalon wrote:The Signal and the Noise: Why Some Predictions Fail - and Others Don't, by Nate Silver.

Interesting discusion of methods of prediction in sports, gambling, weather, climate, politics, etc.


How are you liking it? I was planning on reading it at some point, but I have a pretty huge queue of books to read and I'm not sure where it should fit. Is it good enough that I should bump it up to the beginning of my queue?

I just finished it, and I'd say it should be in the queue, but doesn't need to go to the start. If you have an interest in but little deep knowledge of probability and statistics, and particularly in gambling and sports, move it up a bit, but it's in the gendre that take some useful math topic (in this case mostly Bayes' Theorem), dumbs it down, and brings out a lot of illustrations from everyday life that are interesting and somewhat entertaining, but ultimately leave you with a fairly narrow bit of knowledge. I object mildly to the title-- lots of other basic and interesting stuff about signals and noise that could have been discussed if that was really his intent, starting with a layman's introduction to standard deviation and variance.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby Valuethinker » Tue Dec 25, 2012 6:04 pm

gd wrote:
linguini wrote:Splitting my time between George RR Martin's A Clash of Kings and Niccolo Machiavelli's Discourses on the First Decade of Titus Livius.

ruralavalon wrote:The Signal and the Noise: Why Some Predictions Fail - and Others Don't, by Nate Silver.

Interesting discusion of methods of prediction in sports, gambling, weather, climate, politics, etc.


How are you liking it? I was planning on reading it at some point, but I have a pretty huge queue of books to read and I'm not sure where it should fit. Is it good enough that I should bump it up to the beginning of my queue?

I just finished it, and I'd say it should be in the queue, but doesn't need to go to the start. If you have an interest in but little deep knowledge of probability and statistics, and particularly in gambling and sports, move it up a bit, but it's in the gendre that take some useful math topic (in this case mostly Bayes' Theorem), dumbs it down, and brings out a lot of illustrations from everyday life that are interesting and somewhat entertaining, but ultimately leave you with a fairly narrow bit of knowledge. I object mildly to the title-- lots of other basic and interesting stuff about signals and noise that could have been discussed if that was really his intent, starting with a layman's introduction to standard deviation and variance.


Thank you. Very handy to know... as it was on my list, along with about 1000 other books ;-).
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby chaz » Tue Dec 25, 2012 6:10 pm

Victor Hugo's "Les Miserables" was made into a terrific movie.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby gd » Tue Dec 25, 2012 6:24 pm

Another thought on Silver's book-- like Taleb's Antifragile, I enjoyed reading it with a tablet handy to look up interesting digressions-- in fact, Antifragile was much more entertaining in that way, Taleb spouting off on anything and everything. But quite unlike Taleb, Silver did a superb job of footnoting his work.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby fickle » Tue Dec 25, 2012 6:25 pm

I just re-read His Master's Voice by S. Lem (I read it in the 80s). Not all novels I enjoyed in my 20s have had staying power for me, but this one has.

Wikipedia has a good description of it, if a few spoilers. I don't mind spoilers but some do, however, if you can restrain yourself to just the opening paragraph of the wikipedia entry, you'll get a tantalizing hint as to what it covers.

I would classify it as Fictional Science not Science Fiction, and Lem wrote many books of that genre.

This is a translation, but it never seemed awkward, and I think Lem is so beloved, good translators have gone out of their way on his books.

Essentially: a recurring signal not consistent with space's "background noise" is identified by someone looking for a cheap way to come up with a random number list. After a bit of odd punting back and forth, it ends up in the hands of the US government, who sets a virtual Manhattan Project list of talent to decipher it way out in the desert. It is an interesting look at the scientific mind, but isn't dry. There are no buxom women nor chase scenes, but the result is not predictable from the beginning, and is convoluted, as is much of life.

I encourage anyone who likes a slightly cerebral novel to have a look at Lem. He is much better known overseas, and all the lonely years I traveled the subways of NYC, the only time I had non-creepo conversations with strangers was when I was carrying a Lem novel, and everyone who said "Lem!" and started to talk to me was from overseas, and either a professor or a student. One Finnish, one Chinese, one a Spaniard.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby gkaplan » Tue Dec 25, 2012 7:11 pm

I have just started Long Gone by Alafair Burke, her first stand-alone.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby epilnk » Tue Dec 25, 2012 8:05 pm

Teach Your Children Well. About navigating the risks and challenges of raising affluent children.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby nisiprius » Tue Dec 25, 2012 10:25 pm

The Body in the Library, by Agatha Christie.
Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure nineteen nineteen and six, result happiness; Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure twenty pounds ought and six, result misery.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby jimgour » Tue Dec 25, 2012 11:13 pm

Outliers

by Malcolm Gladwell
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby northstar22 » Tue Dec 25, 2012 11:23 pm

The Great Game, the emergence of Wall Street as a world power, 1653-2000 by John Steele Gordon. Excellent blend of history and finance.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby Valuethinker » Wed Dec 26, 2012 4:32 am

northstar22 wrote:The Great Game, the emergence of Wall Street as a world power, 1653-2000 by John Steele Gordon. Excellent blend of history and finance.


I think I read one of his books about Wall Street and basically found it to be hagiography? ie it was sainting Wall Street and its rise, not considering the positives/ negatives of same.

Of course, in 2000 at the peak of the New Economy and the Dot Com boom, Enron still the world's most admired company (like the world's largest market cap company, not a place you want to be-- see Apple), it was a lot easier to be optimistic about the rise and rise of finance (The City of London as well as Wall Street) than it is in 2012/ 13.

There's a good one-- Wall Street in its own words, from Wall Street Journal journalists (name escapes me)-- fascinating snippets, Nisiprius reviewed it. Also I liked Maggie Mahar's 'Bull' about the boom years.

Going back Adam Smith's 'Paper Money' is a classic (his later books not so good). John Brooks 'the Go Go Years' about the 60s-- written in a very literary New Yorker style of the time, but still interesting-- the classics Student Loan Marketing, the 'electronic' bubble of the early 60s, Gerry Tsai and American Can etc.

Really everything we think is new in the world has happened before, even if 'history repeats. First as Tragedy. Second as Farce'.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby Valuethinker » Wed Dec 26, 2012 4:46 am

fickle wrote:I just re-read His Master's Voice by S. Lem (I read it in the 80s). Not all novels I enjoyed in my 20s have had staying power for me, but this one has.

Wikipedia has a good description of it, if a few spoilers. I don't mind spoilers but some do, however, if you can restrain yourself to just the opening paragraph of the wikipedia entry, you'll get a tantalizing hint as to what it covers.

I would classify it as Fictional Science not Science Fiction, and Lem wrote many books of that genre.

This is a translation, but it never seemed awkward, and I think Lem is so beloved, good translators have gone out of their way on his books.

Essentially: a recurring signal not consistent with space's "background noise" is identified by someone looking for a cheap way to come up with a random number list. After a bit of odd punting back and forth, it ends up in the hands of the US government, who sets a virtual Manhattan Project list of talent to decipher it way out in the desert. It is an interesting look at the scientific mind, but isn't dry. There are no buxom women nor chase scenes, but the result is not predictable from the beginning, and is convoluted, as is much of life.

I encourage anyone who likes a slightly cerebral novel to have a look at Lem. He is much better known overseas, and all the lonely years I traveled the subways of NYC, the only time I had non-creepo conversations with strangers was when I was carrying a Lem novel, and everyone who said "Lem!" and started to talk to me was from overseas, and either a professor or a student. One Finnish, one Chinese, one a Spaniard.


The trick with Lem, and with the Strugatsky Brothers (Boris and Arkady) and even indeed Bulghakov (haven't read, but some of his stuff comes damn close to Science Fiction) is that they were operating in an environment of censorship.

Science Fiction, because it was not 'serious', escaped many of the strictures of the censor. Consider by contrast the Great Soviet War Novel 'Life and Fate' by Vassily Grossman, the censors destroyed the *typewriter tapes* of the original, in a bid to destroy the novel, which has been described as the '20th Century War and Peace'. Since Grossman was writing about very real events and very real things in Soviet Society (military incompetence, repression of people on their own side during the war, anti-semitism that was rife in Soviet society), it had to be suppressed-- Grossman died not knowing that his novel would become the icon of mid 20th Century USSR that it has, the ultimate chronicle of the greatest war in human history.

By contrast SF authors seemed to have more latitude to write about contemporary politics and society, by setting them in Science Fictional settings. And Polish censors less vicious than Russian. In fact, it's clear some authors had 'fans' amongst the censors, who let things through which were dubious, perhaps because they enjoyed reading them. (in the same way, dissidents formed odd friendships with 'their' case officers, who would sometimes brutally interrogate them-- everyone knew they were part of 'The System', and had a part to play).

The analogy I can come up with is Rudard Kapuscinski, the great Polish travel writer. His works about places in Africa (chunks of which he made up) are really allegories about communist Poland (the book about the Emperor of Ethiopia, Haile Salassie, in particular). Interestingly when his biography came out in Poland, the focus was on the revelation that he had spied on people for the Polish internal security (hardly surprising, for a man who was given a precious visa to travel outside the country). Only when the biography was translated into English was, in response to international critics, was the focus shifted to the fact that he made stuff up about the places he went to.

So Lem is telling us something about modern society under communist rule, and its future.

Turn it round. George Orwell wrote a novel about talking animals, Animal Farm, but we call it a political allegory, not 'children's fiction'. He also wrote a novel about a future dictatorship, locked in a permanent war with other dictatorships. No one demeans this by calling it 'Science Fiction'. Instead we see 1984 as one of the great political novels of the 20th century, so commonly referenced it is almost a cliche.

In the Western World, if it is Isaac Asimov and Foundation, or Arthur Clarke, it is 'only' Science Fiction-- read by kids. We'd never demean 1984 or Brave New World by calling them 'Science Fiction'. One defends Tolkein, say, by talking about his Anglo Saxon roots in the language of the books.

In the communist world, by contrast, Science Fiction had a deeper and more serious connotation.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby Valuethinker » Wed Dec 26, 2012 4:51 am

jimgour wrote:Outliers

by Malcolm Gladwell


I get less impressed with Gladwell with each book. However at gladwell.com are his New Yorker articles, and I often find them, as the raw material of what goes into his books, to be actually better. The essay, of the length the New Yorker entertains, seems to be his metier --- or even some of his review articles, the ones about SUV safety, and the Great Chicago Heat Wave, are two I still constantly refer back to.

Also his early piece about being Jamaican in Toronto and then in New York has real personal resonance (Gladwell's mother is Jamaican). In New York, Jamaicans are seen as successful and ambitious immigrants-- the stereotypes of black people rest on other shoulders. In Toronto, a city lacking a native black population (there were a few people from the Underground Railroad in Ontario, and in Nova Scotia a centuries old population descended from freed slaves in the British Navy base and seaport of colonial days), the Jamaicans are seen as the feckless trouble makers. Having grown up in Toronto, it made me revisit my own assumptions and stereotypes.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby Valuethinker » Wed Dec 26, 2012 4:53 am

lloydbraun wrote:"Exorbitant Privilege" by Barry Eichengreen (Economist and Political Scientist at UC Berkeley) , which is a brief history of the dollar's role as the reserve currency. His arguments related to the relationship of the dollar and the pound in the early 20th century and the dollar and the renminbi in the early 21st century are very interesting.


He really is the most cogent and informed writer on international currency issues that I have found. One of the best writers of economic history.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby peppers » Wed Dec 26, 2012 8:59 am

Battle of the Denmark Strait by Robert J. Winklareth
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby randomwalk » Wed Dec 26, 2012 10:35 am

I just finished Clarence Darrow by John Farrell.

Now reading Sweet Tooth by Ian McEwan.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby jimgour » Wed Dec 26, 2012 11:12 am

Valuethinker wrote:
I get less impressed with Gladwell with each book.


"Outliers" came highly recommended, but I am finding it more subjective than objective. Numbers and stats are thrown around like they are "science", but many of the conclusions seem a bit "fluffy" to me, almost like "cherry picking". The ideas and theories are quite interesting, but each of them have to be considered and then accepted or rejected by the reader. It must be the engineer in me.

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

Postby Valuethinker » Wed Dec 26, 2012 1:09 pm

peppers wrote:Battle of the Denmark Strait by Robert J. Winklareth


Ouch. Not the Royal Navy's finest hour-- lost the Hood in minutes. Prince of Wales would go on to be sacrificed (with the Repulse) in a suicide run against the Japanese off Malaya (Force Z). Lucky I didn't lose any great uncles in either debacle. Lack of trust in radar and shadowing capabilities led the British Admiral to engage the Bismark and the Prinz Eugen when, perhaps, he did not need to?

Battlecruisers like the Hood ('Fisher's Follies') always were a bit of a neither-nor-- not heavily armoured enough for a slugfest, and not really equipped for hunting enemy commerce raiders.

BDS must have been one of the last pure battleship battles in history, barring maybe Guadacanal? (and also the sinking of the Scharnhorst at North Cape-- my grandfather knew Admiral Fraser, Fraser of North Cape, quite well).
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby chaz » Wed Dec 26, 2012 1:39 pm

nisiprius wrote:The Body in the Library, by Agatha Christie.

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

Postby Fallible » Wed Dec 26, 2012 4:16 pm

Deleted.
Last edited by Fallible on Sun Jan 06, 2013 9:21 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby fickle » Wed Dec 26, 2012 8:50 pm

Valuethinker wrote:
So Lem is telling us something about modern society under communist rule, and its future.


Some of his work. Chain of Chance is really rather about chance in our life. The only "space" connection is the man is a retired space pilot.
The Futurological Congress is something of a Brave New World, only very funny. And his Perfect Vacuum (a book of reviews of books that don't exist) he said were reviews of books he never got the chance to write. His autobiography is remarkable in that he doesn't talk about his ancestors, but merely describes how his life was when he was age X, thus at 6 he talks about food and pets.
Yes, Lem is a man of his own time, but I think he was more interested in science than politics, over all.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby Blues » Thu Dec 27, 2012 10:06 am

Just finished "Back To Blood" by Tom Wolfe, a clever satire taking place in Miami and environs.

Just started "Lionel Asbo" by Martin Amis and "The Rings Of Saturn" by W.G. Sebald. (Two more different books I can't imagine.)
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby chaz » Thu Dec 27, 2012 4:44 pm

"Justice Denied" by J. A. Jance.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby gkaplan » Thu Dec 27, 2012 9:29 pm

Silesian Station by London author David Downing. This is the second novel featuring John Russell, British journalist and long-time Berlin resident. It is 1939. Just back from America where he has visited his mother and been granted American citizenship, Russell has been hired by the San Francisco Tribune to write commentary on what is happening in Europe.

I had never heard of the San Francisco Tribune, and after doing a quick Google search, apparently there never was one. Perhaps, someone with more knowledge can either verify or correct this assumption. Also the San Francisco Tribune editor who hired Russell, Ed Cummins, apparently never existed.

For the most part, however, Russell intersperses his narrative with both fictional and nonfictional characters.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby lloydbraun » Thu Dec 27, 2012 9:58 pm

[quote="Valuethinker"][quote="lloydbraun"]"Exorbitant Privilege" by Barry Eichengreen (Economist and Political Scientist at UC Berkeley) , which is a brief history of the dollar's role as the reserve currency. His arguments related to the relationship of the dollar and the pound in the early 20th century and the dollar and the renminbi in the early 21st century are very interesting.[/quote]

He really is the most cogent and informed writer on international currency issues that I have found. One of the best writers of economic history.[/quote]

It's really good. I plan to read his book "Globalizing Capital" in a few days.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Postby kamo » Thu Dec 27, 2012 11:10 pm

Wealth Addiction by Philip Slater. Never thought of wealth as an addiction before reading this book, and now I wonder whether I'm an addict. I may not be a "pack-a-day" addict but some of his criteria struck a cord. Scott Burns referenced and recommended it a few times, including not too long ago, and I eventually found a copy in a Half Price Bookstore.

I may search the forum for a thread on this book since its delves into the heart of what our forum is all about - how to build, secure, manage, maintain, protect, preserve, use, share, bequeath, etc. wealth. Our philosophies of wealth underpin all our entries, I suppose. How one views wealth is the topic of the book.

While I understand his Ego, I'm not sure I understand his Constituents or the relationship between the two. I am just beginning the chapter on the Heavy Addicts as he call them - the greatest wealth builders of their time.

I do recommend it.
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