What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

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gkaplan
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby gkaplan » Sun Apr 26, 2015 8:40 pm

I just finished two books by Andrew Kaplan (no relation): Homeland: Carrie's Run and Homeland: Saul's Game. These two are prequels, or spinoffs, if you will, from the Homeland Showtime series.

The first prequel, Homeland: Carrie's Run, reveals the untold back-stories of the series' main characters and takes fans deeper into the life and mind of Carrie Matheson. (Surprisingly, my library has a Russian edition of this book.)

The second prequel, Homeland: Saul's Game, features events in the lives of the show's three main characters – Carrie Mathison, Saul Berenson, and Nicholas Brody. I didn't think this book was as good as the first prequel. The story was too plot driven for me. I missed the character development of the first novel. I also thought the plot was just too confusing and too convoluted.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby Nicolas » Sun Apr 26, 2015 9:28 pm

Something Like An Autobiography by Akira Kurosawa, the acclaimed film director.
Non bene pro toto libertas venditur auro. -- Aesop

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby jay22 » Sun Apr 26, 2015 9:40 pm

Petrocelli wrote:
JW Nearly Retired wrote:
Petrocelli wrote:I just finished All the Light We Cannot See, which is the best fiction book I have read in years.

I can 2nd this. Really a good one.


I know two other people who have read it and agree it is one of the best books they have ever read. This book is a masterpiece. Great story and well-written.

Just finished reading this book; 10/10. What an incredible story.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby pezblanco » Mon Apr 27, 2015 6:50 am

The Fifth Gospel by Ian Caldwell.

I thought this was a very diverting thriller/murder mystery told from the prospective of a Greek Catholic Priest in the Vatican. Comparisons with The DaVinci Code are inevitable but not appropriate in my opinion. The DC was a ridiculously uninformed about just about everything and very poorly written. The Fifth Gospel is the opposite: erudite, intelligent, well written. Very highly recommended. 4 out 5 stars.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby pezblanco » Mon Apr 27, 2015 6:52 am

Dead Wake by Eric Larson. The last voyage of the Lusitania. Everything I have read by Larson is just top notch and this book is no exception. It gives a very nice perspective of the world right at the beginning of the Great War. Very highly recommended. 4.5/5 stars.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby heartwood » Mon Apr 27, 2015 7:15 am

I just finished Harlan Coben's The Stranger. Generally enjoyable as are most of Coben's books. He lives in a neighboring town and writes local restaurants, stores and people into his books. It's fun to recognize them. He does have a note at the end of this one that he adds people's names to books for a donation to his favorite charity. He called out several people so used, at least one who was an unsavory character in the book. I'm not sure I'd want to pay to be the killer.

I started Kazuo Ishiguro's The Buried Giant. I lasted about 150 pages and have put it aside. It's set in medieval Britain. Not at all like his Remains of the Day or his Never Let Me Go. He suggests that people in those times, at least in his novel, lived in the moment and had little recall of what happened a week, a month or a year ago. That's the general setting for the book's beginning, a fog. It had me thinking about mental decline and Alzheimer's. Interesting here, but not for me as I read the book.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby Blues » Mon Apr 27, 2015 7:17 am

"Entry Island" by Peter May.
“Tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat.” - Sun Tzu | "Everybody has a plan until they get punched in the mouth." - Mike Tyson

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby heartwood » Mon Apr 27, 2015 8:01 am

If you use Chrome as your browser you might be interested in an extension that shows the availability of paper and electronic copies of books at your local library while you browse on Amazon.

https://chrome.google.com/webstore/deta ... jmec?hl=en


Once installed, a pile of books icon shows in the routing window. Set up the simple link to your library one time, then go to Amazon and browse books. Nothing more to do. The Amazon screen will now show the availability of the book at your library. You can click through to your library to reserve the book. I find it works better than my library search function since Amazon has a better search function and generally better descriptions and reviews of books.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby bertilak » Mon Apr 27, 2015 2:46 pm

Nicolas wrote:Something Like An Autobiography by Akira Kurosawa, the acclaimed film director.

Was it written from multiple, conflicting, points of view? :happy
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby Nicolas » Mon Apr 27, 2015 3:08 pm

bertilak wrote:
Nicolas wrote:Something Like An Autobiography by Akira Kurosawa, the acclaimed film director.

Was it written from multiple, conflicting, points of view? :happy


Ha -- very good -- you refer to Rashomon! Actually he did recognize that he couldn't produce an unbiased autobiography, in fact he said it was impossible, so he stopped it at the year 1950.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby nisiprius » Mon Apr 27, 2015 3:11 pm

Just started Fannie Flagg's I Still Dream About You.
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 VI

Postby snowshoes » Mon Apr 27, 2015 10:27 pm

Broken Markets: How high frequency/predatory practices have .... by Arnuck and Saluzzi

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby Blues » Tue Apr 28, 2015 7:15 am

"The Harder They Come" by T.C. Boyle (My first by this author.)
“Tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat.” - Sun Tzu | "Everybody has a plan until they get punched in the mouth." - Mike Tyson

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby gkaplan » Tue Apr 28, 2015 2:06 pm

Blues wrote:"The Harder They Come" by T.C. Boyle (My first by this author.)


I'm reading The Tortilla Curtain by the same writer, my first by T. C. Boyle, as well.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby Blues » Tue Apr 28, 2015 2:22 pm

gkaplan wrote:
Blues wrote:"The Harder They Come" by T.C. Boyle (My first by this author.)


I'm reading The Tortilla Curtain by the same writer, my first by T. C. Boyle, as well.


Let me know what you think of it. I'll do the same.
“Tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat.” - Sun Tzu | "Everybody has a plan until they get punched in the mouth." - Mike Tyson

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby ruralavalon » Fri May 01, 2015 4:30 pm

The War That Forged A Nation: why the Civil War still matters, by James McPherson. A collection of twelve essays.

My favorite quote -- As William Faulkner said: "the past is not dead; it is not even past."
"Everything should be as simple as it is, but not simpler." - Albert Einstein | Wiki article link:Getting Started

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby a » Fri May 01, 2015 7:37 pm

That line is very much Faulkner's style. But, I ask him,
what do you MEAN? I've always thought the purpose of
writing was to instruct. That is why, I guess, I don't like
poetry.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby DFrank » Sun May 03, 2015 4:38 pm

Just finished Path of the Assassin by Brad Thor. Another great thriller in the Scot Harvath series.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby FandangoDave5010 » Sun May 03, 2015 8:05 pm

WOLF HALL by Hilary Mantel. A must read if you like "Game of Thrones" on PBS. Read slowly and enjoy every word.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby heartwood » Mon May 04, 2015 5:35 am

Finished Gathering Prey by John Sandford, another in the long line of the Lucas Davenport series. Enjoyable for the way Sandford tells the story. I especially like some of the snappy talk or turn of phrase between characters that has me chuckling almost out loud. My one complaint with his stories (and with Lee Child's Jack Reacher stories) is the over the top use of driving here, then driving back, then drive some more then drive to the first place again and repeat to lengthen the books without advancing the story. Maybe they have to deliver so many words and do so by travelling the characters.

I've started The Husband's Secret [Liane Moriarty], set in Austrailia.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby nisiprius » Mon May 04, 2015 9:24 am

Richard Bach, Illusions: The Adventures of a Reluctant Messiah. I found it engaging and readable, in much the same way I find Antoine de Saint-Exupéry's The Little Prince or Robert M. Pirsig's Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance engaging and readable.

I think Bach owes a tip of the hat to Nevil Shute's novel, Round the Bend, about an aircraft-mechanic-turned-Messiah named "Connie Shaklin," and if he gave that tip of the hat I missed it--unless the name of Bach's messiah, "Shimoda," is supposed to remind us of "Shaklin."

As for me, I go with Philip K. Dick, "Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away."
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby protagonist » Mon May 04, 2015 7:06 pm

nisiprius wrote:
As for me, I go with Philip K. Dick, "Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away."


Excellent!

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby callen » Tue May 05, 2015 12:59 pm

jay22 wrote:
Petrocelli wrote:
JW Nearly Retired wrote:
Petrocelli wrote:I just finished All the Light We Cannot See, which is the best fiction book I have read in years.

I can 2nd this. Really a good one.


I know two other people who have read it and agree it is one of the best books they have ever read. This book is a masterpiece. Great story and well-written.

Just finished reading this book; 10/10. What an incredible story.


I've just added my name to the waiting list for this at my public library.

Some recently read titles:

Missing Microbes: How the Overuse of Antibiotics Is Fueling Our Modern Plagues by Martin Blaser. It discusses the relationship between human beings, our unique microbiome, and the effect of antibiotics in contributing to what he is calling modern plagues: obesity, diabetes, asthma, etc. I don't know that his research necessarily supports his conclusion but the correlation indicates that the link is worth further study. I found the book to be informative overall.

1861: The Civil War Awakening by Adam Goodheart. It doesn't focus on the battles of the civil war, rather chronicles the year leading up the civil war and the general mood of the country from various perspectives. A very good read that isn't really covered in high school history.

Once a Runner by John Parker. I've read this many times but like to reread from time to time. It chronicles the journey of a fictional mile runner and the sacrifices required to become an elite level runner.

Flash Boys: A Wall Street Revolt by Micheal Lewis. I found it to be a good read although I don't think I fully grasp all the mechanisms at work. I seem to recall a thread around here that went into in depth discussion about the book that I need to read through to gain a better understanding.

With my daughter, just finished Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl. A classic that is still a delight to read as an adult. Now we are currently working through Matilda.

Currently, I am reading Gates of Fire: An Epic Novel of the Battle of Thermopylae by Steven Pressfield. Historical fiction recounting the title battle with a background of Sparta and Spartan culture. Excellent read thus far and am just now getting into the portion of the book devoted to the actual battle.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby Fallible » Tue May 05, 2015 1:10 pm

callen wrote:[...With my daughter, just finished Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl. A classic that is still a delight to read as an adult. Now we are currently working through Matilda. ...


If you and your daughter haven't already, be sure to read Dahl's The BFG and James and The Giant Peach. "BFG," btw, will be made into a movie directed by Steven Spielberg, due for release next year.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby callen » Tue May 05, 2015 3:29 pm

Fallible wrote:
callen wrote:[...With my daughter, just finished Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl. A classic that is still a delight to read as an adult. Now we are currently working through Matilda. ...


If you and your daughter haven't already, be sure to read Dahl's The BFG and James and The Giant Peach. "BFG," btw, will be made into a movie directed by Steven Spielberg, due for release next year.


We have a Dahl box set that includes 6 or 8 titles. Both The BFG and James and the Giant Peach are included so we will get to those in the near future. I didn't realize BFG was being made into a movie. After reading Charlie and the Chocolate Factory we borrowed the movie from the library (the Gene Wilder version). I enjoyed seeing her recall passages from the book and noting differences between the two.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby gkaplan » Tue May 05, 2015 5:41 pm

I am reading At Home with Jane Austen by Kim Wilson. This is somewhat of a coffee table book, with beautiful illustrations and photography.
At Home with Jane Austen explores the world of Jane Austen, her physical surroundings, and the journeys she took during her lifetime.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby bertilak » Tue May 05, 2015 6:19 pm

I'm just three stories into Hercule Poirot - the Complete Short Stories which has over 50 stories (including, I think, a novella or two).

I have, and have read, a couple dozen Poirot novels and look forward to the short stories. The series of PPS TV shows staring David Suchet as Poirot were what got me interested. Now that I have read much of Agatha Christie's writings I can say that Suchet got the character down perfectly -- including both the look and the character of the character (so to speak).

The PBS series lasted 25 years and produced 70 shows. Many of those based on short stories. As a matter of fact, the three I have read so far were all used in the PBS shows.

I think the stories are in chronological order with the early ones written in the early 1920s. Makes for interesting reading. That "between the wars" period has some detective/mystery writing and Agatha Christie is the Queen! According to the book's back cover she is just behind the Bible and Shakespeare in the number of books sold. And she has had less time to do it!

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby pezblanco » Wed May 06, 2015 8:33 am

Just finished this:

The Man in the Rockefeller Suit: The Astonishing Rise and Spectacular Fall of a Serial Impostor Paperback – April 25, 2012

Very highly recommended! Here is an excerpt from the blurb in Amazon:

This shocking expose goes behind the headlines to uncover the true story of Clark Rockefeller, wealthy scion of a great American family, who kidnapped his own daughter and vanished. The police and FBI were baffled. Tips poured in, but every lead was a dead end … because “Clark Rockefeller” did not exist.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby heartwood » Wed May 06, 2015 2:57 pm

I'm just starting "When to Rob a Bank: ...And 131 More Warped Suggestions and Well-Intended Rants" by Steven D. Levitt and Stephen J. Dubner, the authors of Freakonomics. It's billed as a curated collection from their economics blog.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby frugalguy » Wed May 06, 2015 9:19 pm

Almost done with the psychological thriller "Gone Girl" by Gillian Flynn.

What a trip. :mrgreen:

I'm almost sad for it to end.... but spend too long with such a brilliantly creepy character and it would get too over the top.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby ruralavalon » Thu May 07, 2015 7:12 pm

Abraham Lincoln, A History, by John Nicolay and John Hay.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby LateStarter1975 » Thu May 07, 2015 7:51 pm

'Thou Shall Prosper' by Rabbi Daniel Lapin
Debt is dangerous...simple is beautiful

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby MP173 » Mon May 11, 2015 12:58 pm

"Deadline" by Sandra Brown. My first book of hers...pretty good.

"Dakota" by Gwen Florio. This is my second book read of hers, the first was "Montana". I liked Montana much better than Dakota, which dealt with the main charactor (Lola) going off to the oil patch in North Dakota to investigate (she is a reporter) the deaths and disappearances of Native Americans young women from her adopted hometown of Magpie, Montana. She gets into more than she bargained for...the first 220 page were pretty good, the last 40 pages really brought the book down.

Next up is "Girl on the Train" by Paula Hawkins....just started it.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby heartwood » Mon May 11, 2015 3:53 pm

100 Diagrams that Changed the World by Scott Christianson; described as a collection of the most significant plans, sketches, drawings and illustrations that have influenced and shaped the way we think. There are two opposing pages, generally one with the diagram, the opposing page has a description. Many are immediately familiar, others are not. It spans the ancient world to today.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby nisiprius » Mon May 11, 2015 5:11 pm

Just finished The Importance of Being Seven, by Alexander McCall Smith, part of his 44 Scotland Street series. Very good.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby gkaplan » Mon May 11, 2015 6:23 pm

I am reading Shakespeare's Macbeth.

I initially was interested in reading Hamlet. The library didn't have any editions I liked, however. The print was too small in most cases, and the commentary either was nonexistent or very rudimentary. On the other hand, I really like this Folger Shakespeare Library edition of Macbeth. It has a pleasantly readable typeface, and the commentary is helpful. The prefatory information is very useful, as well, explaining the language of Shakespeare, summarizing his life, providing background to the Macbeth story, and describing theater life in Shakespeare's time. The Folger edition also comes with a DVD of a live production of Macbeth, which I intend to watch now that I have finished reading the play.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby envinv » Mon May 11, 2015 8:18 pm

Stephen King's Wolves of the Calla...again. Getting a little bit hyped on the positive news for the restarting theatrical Dark Tower endeavor.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby LadyGeek » Mon May 11, 2015 8:45 pm

Strands of Sorrow, by John Ringo. This is the last book (book 4) of the Black Tide Rising zombie apocalypse series. I really like how historical references are mixed into the plot. The inferences are somewhat humorous and keep your attention.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby seeshells » Mon May 11, 2015 8:57 pm

National Security and Double Government, by Michael Glennon. Its theme was "There is no two-or three party system as we are led to believe in the USA, theres us, and them".

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby Bracket » Tue May 12, 2015 8:43 am

Just finished, and enjoyed, The Great Depression--A Diary, by Benjamin Roth.

Lots of proto-Boglehead ideas to be found there: expert predictions are all wrong, buy when the market is in turmoil not when it's booming, buy and hold don't sell in a panic, etc. Oh, and own some bonds rather than be 100% stock. Patience, cash, and courage.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby gkaplan » Tue May 12, 2015 6:26 pm

I currently am reading Nursery Crimes by Ayelet Wadman. This is the first of her Mommy-Track mysteries. Ms. Waldman has quite an interesting background: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ayelet_Waldman. She has written seven of these mysteries and, based on what I have read thus far, I intend to read all seven of them.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby nisiprius » Sat May 16, 2015 10:42 am

Just finished re-reading Toby Tyler, or Ten Weeks with a Circus, by James Otis. (Pseudonym of James Otis Kaler).

Project Gutenberg text

I hadn't realized that this book, which was a recognized classic when I was a kid, seems to have been cast into the outer darkness. I was very surprised to find that my local public library does not have a copy, and that there are only TWO copies in the 43-library, 3-million-volume local interlibrary loan network. Not that it's all that hard to find, but it used to be considered in the same league as Anne of Green Gables or even The Prince and the Pauper and seemingly is forgotten.

I did a reality check and my wife confirmed that she'd read it as a kid, liked it, and had discovered it "because I'd seen it mentioned in so many other things I'd read."

It really is very well done, in many different ways. It's in a very modern colloquial style, there's a definite sense of humor to it as well as a well-paced and almost believable dramatic arc, a really well-done tearjerking scene, and a somewhat perfunctory happy ending.

The relationship between Toby and the circus monkey, "Mr. Stubbs," is very well done, with Toby believing that Mr. Stubbs is intelligent and understands everything, and the simian Mr. Stubbs, who is nothing of the sort, constantly creating little tragedies like throwing away all of Toby's escape money.

Halfway through L. Sprague de Camp's Lest Darkness Fall, a current bargain eBook at Amazon, a 1939 alternate-history book. Not bad, readable, not Great Literature. But I think Isaac Asimov owes it a considerable tip-of-the-hat for some of the basic premises and situations in the Foundation series. Unless of course they both had been reading Arnold Toynbee, an historian I know of but have never read, who had some grand premise that all civilizations follow the same pattern as the Roman Empire.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby lack_ey » Sat May 16, 2015 11:09 am

I finally got around to Nate Silver's The Signal and the Noise: Why So Many Predictions Fail—but Some Don't.

For me there was nothing particularly novel or new that I learned, since I've taken several undergraduate and graduate courses in probability and statistics (though most of that forgotten) and somewhat regularly read FiveThrityEight, other than some odd tidbits here and there about the specific cases studied. For example, I didn't know how much better weather forecasts are than they were before, and I had an "aha" moment about the commercial weather forecasters shying away from 50% precipitation predictions (40% and 60% sound less wishy-washy to the public).

But for the length, it was a fast, easy, enjoyable, worthwhile read. It's much more about fostering wisdom and a way to learn about the world than force-feeding knowledge and how the world works. The insights are valuable and well worth the time.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby Ricola » Sat May 16, 2015 2:04 pm

Recently finished:

Presumed Innocent by Scott Turow
Terrific if you like legal courtroom dramas. I am starting Burden of Proof another of his books now.

Darkness, Take My Hand by Dennis Lehane
Author is good at describing emotional and mental states.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby jebmke » Sat May 16, 2015 2:12 pm

Ricola wrote:Darkness, Take My Hand by Dennis Lehane
Author is good at describing emotional and mental states.

The Patrick Kenzie books are entertaining. Lehane's best work so far is The Given Day. A significant notch above his crime dramas.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby Five Scoop » Sat May 16, 2015 2:48 pm

The Storm of War by Andrew Roberts. An excellent book covering World War II.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby ruralavalon » Sat May 16, 2015 9:55 pm

lack_ey wrote:I finally got around to Nate Silver's The Signal and the Noise: Why So Many Predictions Fail—but Some Don't.

For me there was nothing particularly novel or new that I learned, since I've taken several undergraduate and graduate courses in probability and statistics (though most of that forgotten) and somewhat regularly read FiveThrityEight, other than some odd tidbits here and there about the specific cases studied. For example, I didn't know how much better weather forecasts are than they were before, and I had an "aha" moment about the commercial weather forecasters shying away from 50% precipitation predictions (40% and 60% sound less wishy-washy to the public).

But for the length, it was a fast, easy, enjoyable, worthwhile read. It's much more about fostering wisdom and a way to learn about the world than force-feeding knowledge and how the world works. The insights are valuable and well worth the time.

An excellent book, readable and very interesting.
"Everything should be as simple as it is, but not simpler." - Albert Einstein | | Wiki article link:Getting Started

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby jdb » Sun May 17, 2015 2:22 am

H is for Hawk, by Helen Macdonald. Fascinating story of young English woman who when going through trauma and grief following sudden death of father takes up the sport of falconing with a Goshawk, which is the largest and most difficult to train of the species. Perfect for something to do on 9 hour daytime flight back from London to the States.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby ruralavalon » Sun May 17, 2015 6:37 am

The Borders, by Allistair Moffat. The England/Scotland border from pre-history to the 21st Century, interesting myth and then history. Very detailed, and fun to read.
"Everything should be as simple as it is, but not simpler." - Albert Einstein | | Wiki article link:Getting Started

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby Blues » Sun May 17, 2015 7:16 am

"The Whites" by Richard Price (as Harry Brandt)

...and...

"Where All Light Tends To Go" by David Joy
“Tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat.” - Sun Tzu | "Everybody has a plan until they get punched in the mouth." - Mike Tyson


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