What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

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

Postby VictoriaF » Sun Jul 02, 2017 10:52 am

I am re-reading "Explore TIPS" by The Finance Buff.

I wish he had issued an update.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby Bungo » Mon Jul 03, 2017 12:46 pm

Recently completed The Looming Tower: Al Qaeda and the Road to 9/11 by Lawrence Wright. Excellent book focusing primarily on Al Qaeda and Osama Bin Laden, and to a lesser extent on various failures of the CIA and FBI to share information with each other which could have prevented the 9/11 attacks.

Currently reading Truman by David McCullough.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby gkaplan » Tue Jul 04, 2017 9:29 pm

This morning I finished A Murder of Quality by John le Carré.

A Murder of Quality is the second novel of John le Carré. It offers a satirical look at an elite private school as it chronicles the early development of George Smiley. Miss Ailsa Brimley is in a quandary. She's received a peculiar letter from Mrs. Stella Rode, saying that she fears her husband, an assistant master at Carne School, is trying to kill her. Reluctant to go to the police, Miss Brimley calls upon her old wartime colleague, George Smiley. Unfortunately, it's too late. Mrs. Rode has just been murdered. As Smiley takes up the investigation, he realizes that in life, as in espionage, nothing is quite what it appears.

This is the second of the George Smiley books of John le Carré, the first being Call for the Dead. Some observations: George Smiley is the antithesis of the James Bond character of Ian Fleming. (I've never read the James Bond books, but I'm assuming the movies pretty much mirror the books.) James Bond is a glib, one-dimensional, womanizing cardboard character. George Smiley, on the other hand, is a quiet, shy, unprepossessing, unpretentious, two-dimensional character. Several of the John le Carré books have been adapted into books. Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy has been adapted into both a movie and a television miniseries. These adaptions, in my opinion, have been high quality ones. A final observation I would have is that the John le Carré books all have interesting titles: Call for the Dead, A Murder of Quality, The Spy Who Came in from the Cold, The Looking Glass War, and so on.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby MP173 » Wed Jul 05, 2017 5:04 pm

"Sting Like a Bee, Muhammad Ali vs. United States" by Leigh Montville.

This is a look at a very narrow part of "The Greatest" life, warts and all. It details the five years of Ali's refusal to report to the military when drafted. That is about all it covers. We are provided little of his life before that time, and very little after 1971...that is ok as other books no doubt have been written covering the rest of his life.

I found this a fascinating look at his legal challenges, his involvement with the Nation of Islam (including his segregationalist views), his two marriages in the era (Belinda Ali was a very fascinating woman, years ahead of her teen years), his financial struggles and how he got thru the lean years (lots of college talks and Belinda using her college funds to feed the family), and the final US Supreme Court decision. If you do not know the true story of the decision, it is intriguing and a great ending. Also covered, but not in detail are his boxing matches during the time, including the Joe Frazier battle on and off the ring.

I enjoyed it, but came away a little jaded by his life in that time. He talked a good game as a member of the NOI, but his private life left quite a bit to be desired. His aging and how he handled his post boxing career have made me a big fan...this book gives an important view into a five year period that became a lightning rod and how the view of him changed, as the nation's view of the Vietnam conflict changed.

Excellent book.

ed

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby jginseattle » Wed Jul 05, 2017 5:48 pm

I'm about 1/4 the way through Since We Fell by Dennis Lehane. So far, so good.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby jebmke » Wed Jul 05, 2017 5:53 pm

jginseattle wrote:I'm about 1/4 the way through Since We Fell by Dennis Lehane. So far, so good.

didn't realize he had a new one out. Be interested in your reaction after finishing. I like Lehane - his early books are basically "airplane" books but he really refined his skills along the way.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby azurekep » Wed Jul 05, 2017 7:38 pm

I'm reading three books at a time...one for each of three moods...

Don Winslow - California Fire and Life
This book is a lot of fun. I just got past the "fire school" part, which was educational and funny. I like that the main character is a laid-back surfer type, but he is Type-A when it comes to education and doing a good job. The subject matter -- fire forensics -- is fascinating.

Arnaldur Indridason - Jar City
This is a standard Scandinavian mystery, complete with an Inspector and a dysfunctional family (daughter in this case). I wouldn't have known it was based in Iceland however except for the crazy names and the mention of a lava field along the highway. The murder mystery is slowly building into something interesting.

Ben Coes - Power Down
Early on, this book switches between a huge dam in Canada and a major oil platform off the coast of Columbia. Both are blown up in spectacular fashion by terrorists. It's a straight action thriller. I'm hoping there will be some character development as the book progresses.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby gkaplan » Wed Jul 05, 2017 8:53 pm

This afternoon, I finished reading The Strange Library by Haruki Murakami. It's all about three people who are imprisoned in a nightmarish library and who plot their escape. The Strange Library really is an appropriate title for this book, because the book really is strange. I read it in two days, but I could have read it in two hours if I had read it straight through. (The volume has no page numbers, but it consists of twenty-six chapters, each of which is about two or three pages, some less.)

After I finished The Strange Library, I started reading the author's What I Talk About When I talk About Running and couldn't be more different than his The Strange Library. In 1982, Murakami sold his jazz bar to devote himself to writing and in the process began running to keep fit. A year later, he completed a solo course from Athens to Marathon, and now, after dozens of such races, not to mention triathlons and a dozen critically acclaimed books, he reflects upon the influence the sport has had on his life and – even more importantly – on his writing. This is more to my liking, maybe because I'm a runner. What I Talk About When I talk About Running is longer than The Strange Library at 179 pages, so it's taking a bit longer to read than The Strange Library. Who's counting pages, though, when you're enjoying the read.
Gordon

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby Earl Lemongrab » Thu Jul 06, 2017 10:03 am

The Annihilation Score by Charles Stross. This is one of the series of novels about The Laundry, a secret (yet still bureaucratic) British organization that battles eldritch threats. The books are a combination HP Lovecraft/thriller/Dilbert.

While the previous books had been from the viewpoint of Bob Howard, this shifts to his wife Dominque (Mo) O'Brien, who had been working for The Laundry as the wielder of the "bone violin" and its powerful personalized force that she calls "Lecter". However, the outbreak of superhero powers among the populace thrusts Mo into management as the head of a new barely cooperative police/Laundry/governmental agency formed to deal with the situation.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby heartwood » Thu Jul 06, 2017 1:08 pm

Earl Lemongrab wrote:The Annihilation Score by Charles Stross. This is one of the series of novels about The Laundry, a secret (yet still bureaucratic) British organization that battles eldritch threats. The books are a combination HP Lovecraft/thriller/Dilbert.

While the previous books had been from the viewpoint of Bob Howard, this shifts to his wife Dominque (Mo) O'Brien, who had been working for The Laundry as the wielder of the "bone violin" and its powerful personalized force that she calls "Lecter". However, the outbreak of superhero powers among the populace thrusts Mo into management as the head of a new barely cooperative police/Laundry/governmental agency formed to deal with the situation.


On this recommendation I just borrowed the first (The Atrocity Archives) in the series from the library.

I'll try it as soon as I finish my current read by Michael Crichton, Dragon Teeth. Not one of his best, but then it was only recently found, years after his death.

Your book sounds a lot like The Rook by Daniel O'Malley. Again a Brit secret service agency fighting sinister threats from supernatural or magical opponents. There's a second in that series so far.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby Koogie » Thu Jul 06, 2017 1:57 pm

heartwood wrote:Your book sounds a lot like The Rook by Daniel O'Malley. Again a Brit secret service agency fighting sinister threats from supernatural or magical opponents. There's a second in that series so far.


It does sound a lot like it. FWIW, the second Rook (Stiletto) wasn't as good as the first.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby Earl Lemongrab » Thu Jul 06, 2017 5:17 pm

heartwood wrote:On this recommendation I just borrowed the first (The Atrocity Archives) in the series from the library.

Well, I hope you will enjoy it. That's the nice thing about the library, if you don't like it you just return it. Your only sunk cost is time.
This week's fortune cookie: "You will enjoy doing something spontaneous this weekend." Apparently that meant working on a dead PC, but I didn't enjoy that much.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby ruralavalon » Thu Jul 06, 2017 6:35 pm

The Totally Unscientific Study of the Search for Human Happiness, by Paula Poundstone.

She tries exercise, getting organized, dancing, yoga, a positive attitude, meditation, helping others, and renting a Lamborghini for a day. It's funnier if you imagine her voice saying the words of the book out loud.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby MP173 » Fri Jul 07, 2017 7:24 am

I am about 80 pages into "Hue, 1968", Mark Bowden's book on the Tet Offensive battle in 1968.

This occurred during my early teen years and the isolation of my world (small rural community) and the lack of instant communications kept me from awareness of much of the Viet Nam era. Bowden, so far, has me hooked. More detail later when finished, but it seems very well researched and provides accounts based not only the leaders, but the people on the ground.

Ed

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby market timer » Fri Jul 07, 2017 7:58 pm

Reading Whatever by Michel Houellebecq.

Just 10% into this book, but love it so far. Previously read Houellebecq's The Elementary Particles. Will probably end up reading everything he's written.

Amazon blurb:
Just thirty, with a well-paid job, no love life and a terrible attitude, the anti-hero of this grim, funny novel smokes four packs of cigarettes a day and writes weird animal stories in his spare time. A computer programmer by day, he is tolerably content, until he's packed off with a colleague - the sexually-frustrated Raphael Tisserand - to train provincial civil servants in the use of a new computer system.

Houellebecq's first novel was a smash hit in France, expressing the misanthropic voice of a generation. Like A Confederacy of Dunces, Houellebecq's bitter, sarcastic and exasperated narrator vociferously expresses his frustration and disgust with the world.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby d0gerz » Sat Jul 08, 2017 9:53 am

Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind by Yuval Noah Harari. Fascinating book on the history of homo sapiens as a species. Focuses on three revolutions in history, the Cognitive Revolution, the Agricultural Revolution, and the Scientific Revolution. The first of these is what truly set homo sapiens apart from other species of the genus homo. The Agricultural Revolution is termed a big fraud by the author as it tied humans down and reduced the variety of foods they ate (compared to hunter gatherers), making them more susceptible to disease.

It's an all-encompassing book, touching on many different areas, which is what makes it fascinating. For a pure evolutionary history of humans e.g. 'why do we walk upright?' I would recommend The Story of the Human Body by Daniel Lieberman.

Now reading The Bogleheads Guide to Investing by Taylor Larimore, Mel Lindauer, and Michael LeBoeuf.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby ruralavalon » Sun Jul 09, 2017 2:12 pm

The Lewis Man, by Peter May.

This is a murder mystery, second of a series, set in the Outer Hebrides Islands, Scotland. An ex-detective has returned to his native island, and is confronted a body preserved in peat and with a 50 year old puzzle.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby Christine_NM » Sun Jul 09, 2017 2:37 pm

Since this month is the bicentennial of Jane Austen's death, I am going on a binge-read of her 6 novels. Then maybe a biography. Five of them are in well-reviewed editions annotated by David Shapard.

I have read them all starting in high school, but the annotations will add a lot. The movies and TV films have got in the way of remembering the actual novels.

This is just a heads up to Austen fans, I know there are some here.

While I wait for the paperbacks to arrive (lots of illustrations, not so good for Kindle), I'm reading Elizabeth Taylor's Mrs. Palfrey at the Claremont. It's a 1971 classic about the perils of aging written in a wonderful spare, elegant style.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby jebmke » Sun Jul 09, 2017 2:38 pm

The Steel Kiss, Jeffrey Deaver. Psychopath starts hacking into people's things on the internet of things and killing them with their own internet-enabled devices (stoves, microwave ovens ...). Don't turn your back on that Roomba.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby azurekep » Sun Jul 09, 2017 5:33 pm

azurekep wrote:
Don Winslow - California Fire and Life
This book is a lot of fun. I just got past the "fire school" part, which was educational and funny. I like that the main character is a laid-back surfer type, but he is Type-A when it comes to education and doing a good job. The subject matter -- fire forensics -- is fascinating.


Just finished California Fire & Life.

Terrific read. Don Winslow lives up to the hype.

The plot started out simple -- a house fire along the southern California coast -- then ballooned into something involving fraud, corporate corruption, and the Russian mob. The main characters are given detailed backstories.

The story centers around Jack Wade, the Harry Bosch of insurance adjusters, who is obsessed with finding the cause of the fire. He's convinced the fire was an arson and murder, but is being pushed to back off, call it an accidental fire and pay the claim. Jack refuses and people begin disappearing.

The book is funny (the early part), suspenseful (the later part), complex and educational. It has SoCal local color and, among other things, takes us inside a Soviet-era prison. The focus on fire and insurance adjusting is pretty unique in the realm of fiction.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby gkaplan » Sun Jul 09, 2017 9:53 pm

This morning I finished reading What I Talk About When I Talk About Running by Haruki Murakami.

In 1982, having sold his jazz bar to devote himself to writing, Haruki Murakami began running to keep fit. A year later, he completed a solo course from Athens to Marathon, and now, after dozens of such races, not to mention triathlons and a dozen critically acclaimed books, he reflects upon the influence the sport has had on his life and – even more importantly – on his writing. (From publisher description)

Murakami really captures the psyche, the mindset, the motivation of the runner (and probably the novelist, as well). I think a more appropriate title, though, would have been What I Think About When I Think About Running.
Gordon

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby bertilak » Sun Jul 09, 2017 10:06 pm

Don Quixote has been discussed above. I want to report that I just finished it today. This was the Grossman translation. I can recommend it.

The ending was quite touching.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby gkaplan » Sun Jul 09, 2017 10:12 pm

bertilak wrote:Don Quixote has been discussed above. I want to report that I just finished it today. This was the Grossman translation. I can recommend it.

The ending was quite touching.



On my reading bucket list.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby d0gerz » Mon Jul 10, 2017 9:12 am

gkaplan wrote:This morning I finished reading What I Talk About When I Talk About Running by Haruki Murakami.

In 1982, having sold his jazz bar to devote himself to writing, Haruki Murakami began running to keep fit. A year later, he completed a solo course from Athens to Marathon, and now, after dozens of such races, not to mention triathlons and a dozen critically acclaimed books, he reflects upon the influence the sport has had on his life and – even more importantly – on his writing. (From publisher description)

Murakami really captures the psyche, the mindset, the motivation of the runner (and probably the novelist, as well). I think a more appropriate title, though, would have been What I Think About When I Think About Running.

I've read Kafka on the Shore, which was weird but kept me interested long enough to finish it. Next tried reading Norwegian Wood but gave up in the middle. Main problem I had was finding his characters believable, even allowing for the fact that these were works of fiction and fantasy. I was living in Japan at the time and mentioned this to my Japanese language teacher. She told me, "Don't feel bad, a lot of people in Japan feel the same way!"

Anyway this book of his I enjoyed thoroughly. It has the tone and feel of a distance runner, very calm, measured, and steady. Though what I'm interested in knowing is how he remained injury-free to be able to run 6+ miles every day. I tried running 1-2 miles a day and ended up with tendinitis after a couple of months!

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby GKSD » Mon Jul 10, 2017 10:04 am

Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby denismurf » Mon Jul 10, 2017 3:07 pm

Here's another WWII book I have not seen mentioned: The Forgotten Soldier by Guy Sajer. The author of this memoir was a teenager living in Alsace with his German and French parents when the German army rolled through and recruited young men like Sajer to enlist in the Wehrmacht. Sajer signed up, went into the infantry, and spent the next 4 years of his life as a grunt fighting on the eastern front. He wrote this memoir, so obviously survived, despite being involved on the ground with the savage fighting in the Soviet Union and the long road back into Germany.

His descriptions are as brutal and vivid as the ones by Sledge, but from a perspective unfamiliar to most Americans. This is not a book to read while eating.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby mancich » Mon Jul 10, 2017 3:18 pm

Boomerang: Travels in the New Third World by Michael Lewis. Free on Prime reading. I like the way he writes and find the book to be informative and entertaining.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby ruralavalon » Tue Jul 11, 2017 10:16 pm

Cod: A Biography of the Fish That Changed the World, by Mark Kurlansky.

The subtitle is a bit overstated, but this is an interesting book about the history of fishing for Cod over the past 600 years in Western Europe, the North Atlantic, and North America.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby VictoriaF » Wed Jul 12, 2017 1:54 pm

Algorithms to Live By: The Computer Science of Human Decisions by Brian Christian and Tom Griffiths.

I highly recommend this book. It describes algorithms used in computer science and suggests how to use these algorithms in personal and professional lives. The book describes trade-offs between looking and leaping, exploring and exploiting, sorting and searching, responsiveness and throughput, number and size of caches and the main memory, and between time, space and certainty. Some of the algorithms are intuitive and people follow them without explicitly acknowledging them. Other algorithmic recommendations go against common advice. For example, sorting file folders in the topical or alphabetical order wastes time; putting the last file used on the left (regardless of its nature) is more economical. Some of our perceived errors are quite normal. For example, procrastination is a scheduling error, i.e., scheduling for a wrong goal. Some of our righteous behaviors, e.g., seeking novelty and multitasking, can undermine our goals.

I will be referring to this book in relevant Bogleheads discussions. It will be fun if others know where I am coming from.

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

Postby meowcat » Wed Jul 12, 2017 2:19 pm

Big John Grisham fan, here. I've read them all. Just finished The Whistler and Camino Island.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby Pranav » Wed Jul 12, 2017 2:22 pm

How to Pay Zero Taxes by Jeff Schnepper
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby azurekep » Fri Jul 14, 2017 3:14 am

VictoriaF wrote:Algorithms to Live By: The Computer Science of Human Decisions by Brian Christian and Tom Griffiths.


I'm reading a book that shows bad decision-making at its best (worst?). The main characters can probably use a little help from the above book.

The book is The Switch by Joseph Finder. Finder specializes in writing about ordinary people who make bad decisions, which gets them into hugely dangerous situations.

In this case, a U.S. Senator starts things off by unlawfully putting classified information on a laptop, hoping to read the document on an airplane. There's a mix-up at airport security and a young coffee exec ends up with the Senator's laptop. On the bottom of the laptop is a post-it note with the password on it (inexplicably left there by the Senator), which the coffee exec uses to open the laptop and find out that the owner is the Senator from Illinois.

Then a lot of bad things start... Holding onto the laptop is the only leverage allowing the coffee exec to stay alive.

Where to go for help? The Government? The cops? The press?

Books like this make you wonder what you yourself would do in a similar situation. If you don't get the decisions right early on, your options close.

Finder is one of my go-to thriller authors, but in most of his books, including this one, some of the decision-making mistakes strain credulity a little, especially since virtually everyone these days knows that cell phone conversations and Internet communications can be monitored/tracked, so defensive actions (by our hero) that don't take that into account seem a little naive.

Still, I'm anxious to see how the coffee exec gets out of this situation. The Senator's chief of staff -- tasked to get the laptop back -- is also sweating hard and making bad decisions and it will be interesting to see what happens to him.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby VictoriaF » Fri Jul 14, 2017 7:53 am

azurekep wrote:
VictoriaF wrote:Algorithms to Live By: The Computer Science of Human Decisions by Brian Christian and Tom Griffiths.


I'm reading a book that shows bad decision-making at its best (worst?). The main characters can probably use a little help from the above book.

The book is The Switch by Joseph Finder. Finder specializes in writing about ordinary people who make bad decisions, which gets them into hugely dangerous situations.


Sounds interesting. I may check it out after I reduce my backlog of nonfiction books.

Note that "decisions" have a wide range of meanings. Finder's bad decision seem to be clustered at the life-and-death end of the scale. The "Algorithms to Live By" book, and much of Behavioral Economics, help with mundane every-day decisions, many of which we don't even realize we are making.

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

Postby azurekep » Fri Jul 14, 2017 11:18 am

VictoriaF wrote:
azurekep wrote:
VictoriaF wrote:Algorithms to Live By: The Computer Science of Human Decisions by Brian Christian and Tom Griffiths.


I'm reading a book that shows bad decision-making at its best (worst?). The main characters can probably use a little help from the above book.

The book is The Switch by Joseph Finder. Finder specializes in writing about ordinary people who make bad decisions, which gets them into hugely dangerous situations.


Sounds interesting. I may check it out after I reduce my backlog of nonfiction books.

Note that "decisions" have a wide range of meanings. Finder's bad decision seem to be clustered at the life-and-death end of the scale. The "Algorithms to Live By" book, and much of Behavioral Economics, help with mundane every-day decisions, many of which we don't even realize we are making.

Victoria


I wouldn't recommend the book it you're not into thrillers or thrillers about everyday people. At base, it's just people making dumb mistakes with a little bad luck thrown in. But I was reminded how bad decision-making is really the organizing principle of Finder's books.

One of the main mistakes, though, was caused due to lack of information -- namely not knowing what one does not know. The Senator's chief of staff didn't know that the Senator had placed the password on the bottom of the laptop (bad decision by Senator) when he called the coffee exec to get it back, and so he used a false identity (bad decision by CoS). The coffee exec, knowing the laptop belonged to the Senator since he had used the password, immediately became suspicious and thought the caller was a fraud, so he hung up (bad decision by coffee exec). These kinds of decisions added up, and only then did they become life and death. It's amusing and fun, but it also is a reminder that we all do dumb things and sometimes the stakes can be big -- or at least in fiction.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby jebmke » Fri Jul 14, 2017 11:38 am

azurekep wrote:password on the bottom of the laptop (bad decision by Senator)
happens more often than people realize. I regularly get laptops returned from my TaxAide volunteers with post-its on the screen.

Our local indy bookstore sells a little notebook called "My Passwords" (basically a high priced, customized small spiral notebook) that they highlight "fits conveniently in your purse." :oops:
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby MJW » Fri Jul 14, 2017 12:43 pm

Just finished "Desperation" by Stephen King. It was alright. As typical in my readings of King, I enjoyed the first half of the novel more than the latter.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby VictoriaF » Fri Jul 14, 2017 3:34 pm

azurekep wrote:The Senator's chief of staff didn't know that the Senator had placed the password on the bottom of the laptop (bad decision by Senator)...


I don't put passwords on the bottom of my laptop--and I would not advise anyone else to do it. However, the bottom of the laptop is a natural place to keep passwords. "Algorithms to Live By," among other things, discusses storage and layered caching. The information most frequently used belongs to the easiest reachable cache. To be clear, the book does NOT suggest keeping passwords in an unsecured location. But it brings up interesting reasoning behind common computer and human practices. (This paragraph is my reasoning, not the book's.)

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black jack
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby black jack » Fri Jul 14, 2017 8:49 pm

d0gerz wrote:Though what I'm interested in knowing is how he remained injury-free to be able to run 6+ miles every day. I tried running 1-2 miles a day and ended up with tendinitis after a couple of months!

There are a lot of variables between individuals. It's been a long time since I read the book, but Murakami may not have started out running several miles every day. Should you like to try again, I'd suggest running 1-2 miles every other day for a few months, then slowly increasing the volume from there -- if you wish -- to give your tendons and ligaments time to adjust to the demands.

Alternately, take a look at The One-Minute Workout by Martin Gibala. Gibala is a professor of exercise physiology who has done a lot of research on the effects of interval training; in the book, he discusses both his own research and studies by others. For reasons that are not clear, interval training produces benefits similar to steady state training in a fraction of the time. Less time spent running makes it less likely you'll get tendonitis.

One example: Gibala describes a study he supervised that compared two groups of sedentary subjects. Both groups worked out three times a week on stationary bikes (easier to measure energy expended). One group cycled at a steady pace, approximately 70% of maximum heart rate, for 50 minutes. The other group did three 20-second all-out cycling sprints, with two minutes recovery after the first and second bursts. Both groups did 2 minutes of warmup and 3 minutes of cool-down. So, not counting the five minutes of warmup and cool-down, the first group worked out for 150 minutes each week (50 minutes x 3 sessions), while the second group worked out very hard for 3 minutes (3 x 20 seconds each session x 3 sessions a week) and recovered for 12 minutes each week. At the end of 12 weeks, the fitness gains between the two groups were virtually identical.

Gibala discusses a variety of interval workouts in the book. They are not all based on high-intensity intervals.

So, if you don't like running (or stationary cycling), or you're short on time, this book has great news: you can get good results on a very small amount of exercise. But if you do like running, you may find this book challenging; I do. I have a Calvinistic - or perhaps egotistical - feeling that a short workout is a 30-minute run, and a long workout is a 90-minute run. If I can get similar effects in a 10-minute workout, do I really want to spend another couple of hours a week running? Maybe I do; it's calming, and it feeds my ego to run so much at my age (58). But it's nice to know that I don't have to run so much to stay in shape. I run six days a week, and since reading this book two months ago have switched three of those workouts to intervals. But those workouts are the worst of both worlds; being Calvinistic, I do 10 intervals, not 3, so it's still a 30-minute workout, and it's not calming, and involves a lot of keeping track of numbers and some amount of pain. It's just very hard to accept that three intervals is enough, even with Gibala's evidence in front of me; it feels like the workout is over before it even gets started. But I figure I can't keep it up for too long, because doing ten intervals is not fun, so I expect I'll slowly reduce the number until I get closer to three.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby gkaplan » Fri Jul 14, 2017 9:30 pm

This morning, I finished Random Road: Introducing Geneva Chase by Thomas Kies.

(Note: Spoiler Alert) It's a crime scene worthy of Hieronymus Bosch, so shocking and so senseless it challenges the local law and intrigues veteran reporter Geneva Chase whose career may be dying alongside that of her small town newspaper. The Sheffield Post headline shouts, "Cops Call Murder Scene 'Slaughterhouse." On the scene, Genie spurs the deputy police chief to tell her quietly, "Six bodies...all nude...hacked to pieces." Even tough Geneva shivers. How could such a slaughter happen on Connecticut's moneyed Gold Coast? To privileged couples inside a historic 1898 Queen Anne mansion on the shoreline of Long Island Sound? Where is the protection afforded by the gated community and the security technology in place?
For Geneva, battling alcoholism and bad choices, writing this story is the last chance to redeem herself. She's lost every other major news job she's had. Working at her hometown newspaper is the end of the line – There will be nowhere else to go, but ink still flows thick in her veins.

Her story on Sheffield's unlikely killing field is the Post's lead, soon picked up by metro papers, and she keeps it, exposing the turbulence beneath the rich and entitleds' secrets, their ability to buy off embarrassments. She's also tracking community connections, watching a hit-and-run case disappear through a large donation, interviewing dangerous suspects, visiting a swingers club, joining cops for a burglary bust, and taking a guided tour to spot history's underwater ghost.All this despite the distractions of the married man she can't quite ditch and the sweet if shaky love affair she starts with an old high school sweetheart. Can she keep her drinking under control and do her job well enough to keep from getting fired, finish the story, not further screw up her life? And not get killed? Thomas Kies' gripping first novel with its corkscrew of a plot, asks, "Do things happen for a reason, or is everything random?"
She's also tracking community connections, watching a hit-and-run case disappear through a large donation, interviewing dangerous suspects, visiting a swingers club, joining cops for a burglary bust, and taking a guided tour to spot history's underwater ghost.
All this despite the distractions of the married man she can't quite ditch and the sweet if shaky love affair she starts with an old high school sweetheart. Can she keep her drinking under control and do her job well enough to keep from getting fired, finish the story, not further screw up her life? And not get killed? Thomas Kies' gripping first novel with its corkscrew of a plot, asks, "Do things happen for a reason, or is everything random? "
(Edited publisher description.)

About half way through this book, I was thinking that, for a very intelligent young woman, she makes really dumb decisions about men: she's had three failed marriages and currently is having an an affair with a sleazeball who is married and knows that his wife knows that he is having an affair and with whom; and Geneva knows that he is a sleazeball who is married and knows that his wife knows that he is having an affair and with whom.
To top it off, Geneva is a committed alcoholic, and her supervisors have threatened to fire her, despite their respect for her journalistic skills, unless she gets her act together. In other words, Geneva is a multi-dimensional character: a newspaper reporter respected by her peers and the Sheffield police, intelligent, and driven, yet a flawed individual who makes dumb decisions about men and has a serious drinking problem.

At the end of the book, Geneva is a recovering alcoholic, sober for eleven months and a guardian, who is taking steps to adopt the thirteen year-old daughter of a deceased life-long friend. (In some ways, Geneva Chase has morphed into Harry Bosch.) Will being a single mother who loves the thirteen year-old girl and who loves her back be able to remain sober while coping with the mood swings of a growing teenager? I look forward to the second Geneva Chase mystery to find out.
Gordon

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby wilson08 » Sat Jul 15, 2017 4:32 pm

Portrait of a Marriage
by Pearl S. Buck

An aspiring young artist from a wealthy New York family
is on a sketching tour of rural Pennsylvania looking for
inspiration and suitable landscapes to paint. He meets
a charming farm girl and two totally dissimilar people
begin a lifetime together that is beautifully chronicled
in this novel.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby ruralavalon » Sun Jul 16, 2017 2:49 pm

Farther Than Any Man, by Martin Dugard.

This is a biography of Capitan Cook covering his entire adult life including his three voyages of discovery in the Pacific. I recommend this book.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby MJW » Sun Jul 16, 2017 3:05 pm

ruralavalon wrote:Farther Than Any Man, by Martin Dugard.

This is a biography of Capitan Cook covering his entire adult life including his three voyages of discovery in the Pacific. I recommend this book.

You just helped me select a birthday gift for my father. Thank you!

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby jebmke » Sun Jul 16, 2017 4:45 pm

Field Gray, by Philip Kerr. Book 7 (I think) of the Bernie Gunther series.
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d0gerz
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby d0gerz » Tue Jul 18, 2017 10:36 am

black jack wrote:
d0gerz wrote:Though what I'm interested in knowing is how he remained injury-free to be able to run 6+ miles every day. I tried running 1-2 miles a day and ended up with tendinitis after a couple of months!

There are a lot of variables between individuals. It's been a long time since I read the book, but Murakami may not have started out running several miles every day. Should you like to try again, I'd suggest running 1-2 miles every other day for a few months, then slowly increasing the volume from there -- if you wish -- to give your tendons and ligaments time to adjust to the demands.

Alternately, take a look at The One-Minute Workout by Martin Gibala. Gibala is a professor of exercise physiology who has done a lot of research on the effects of interval training; in the book, he discusses both his own research and studies by others. For reasons that are not clear, interval training produces benefits similar to steady state training in a fraction of the time. Less time spent running makes it less likely you'll get tendonitis.

Thanks for the tip and the book recommendation. Will check it out. I recognize each individual is different. In my case I had been running steadily (at least 3 miles per run) 3-4 times a week for the past few years. Then in November last year I tried running every day. Went well for a couple of months and I felt in great shape... until I got injured. In hindsight I should've taken more breaks. At the time however I didn't think I was overdoing it. I also should've stretched more to alleviate muscle soreness that was always there and building up steadily, but which I didn't notice because there really was no discomfort until right at the end.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby Fallible » Tue Jul 18, 2017 6:05 pm

bertilak wrote:Don Quixote has been discussed above. I want to report that I just finished it today. This was the Grossman translation. I can recommend it.

The ending was quite touching.


Thanks for the update. Having been in the "discussed above" group, I'm sad to say I'm still into the second part, or more like into and out of it. For some reason I don't stay for long with this great novel as I do most books, yet am engrossed in it each time I resume reading. It's somehow a different reading experience, at least for me.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby bertilak » Tue Jul 18, 2017 7:33 pm

Fallible wrote:
bertilak wrote:Don Quixote has been discussed above. I want to report that I just finished it today. This was the Grossman translation. I can recommend it.

The ending was quite touching.


Thanks for the update. Having been in the "discussed above" group, I'm sad to say I'm still into the second part, or more like into and out of it. For some reason I don't stay for long with this great novel as I do most books, yet am engrossed in it each time I resume reading. It's somehow a different reading experience, at least for me.

What slowed me down was the episodic nature of the book. It is made up of a string of little stories, each taking a few short chapters. Every time I got to the end of a story I was hesitant to "start all over" with the next one. That's over-stated -- the stories do tie together but still, the steam gets let out fairly often. I do think the pace picks up a bit in the second part.

Perhaps the book needs to be savored in moderate portions. I feel like Sancho could provide a half-appropriate proverb (or two or three) right here! I like what Don Quixote said to Sancho about proverbs:

    “Although proverbs distill the wisdom of the ages, you often drag them in by their hair and they seem more like foolishness than maxims.”
I have a strong moral sense - by my standards. | -- Rex Stout

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby jginseattle » Tue Jul 18, 2017 8:10 pm

The Late Shift, by Michael Connelly. Recommended.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby jginseattle » Tue Jul 18, 2017 8:21 pm

jebmke wrote:
jginseattle wrote:I'm about 1/4 the way through Since We Fell by Dennis Lehane. So far, so good.

didn't realize he had a new one out. Be interested in your reaction after finishing. I like Lehane - his early books are basically "airplane" books but he really refined his skills along the way.


This started off well enough but it devolves into a mediocre movie plot. I have only liked one of the four Lehane novels I've read. As talented as he is, it seems that he's dumbing things down for his readers.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby d0gerz » Tue Jul 18, 2017 8:29 pm

Under the Midnight Sun by Japanese mystery writer Keigo Higashino. Translated into English by Alexander O. Smith, who's the translator of most of his books. This book was originally published as a serial in a monthly magazine over a period of 2 years, which you can kind of tell by the structure. It is told from the viewpoint of many different characters who drift in and out of the story, and the chapters seem well-separated.

I really enjoyed reading it, it's my favorite of the three that I've read by him so far. Higashino is a masterful storyteller and has won the Japanese equivalent of the Edgar award, the Edogawa Rampo Prize (named after how the Japanese pronounce 'Edgar Allan Poe'). This novel has been made into a Japanese TV series, as well as two different movies, a Korean film White Night, and a Japanese version called Into the White Night.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Postby tetractys » Tue Jul 18, 2017 9:21 pm

Chuck Gould. The Rabbi's Gift. -- An ancient tale newly and uniquely retold. Very enjoyable; I couldn't put it down. Mariam's a healer on the edge of being accused of witchcraft. Yusuf's a tile setter. Gabriel says, "just call me rabbi." The Zealots, Illuminati, Astrologers, Romans, etc., are all in there. Quite fun. -- Tet
Last edited by tetractys on Tue Jul 18, 2017 9:29 pm, edited 1 time in total.


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