What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

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

Post by Sandtrap » Wed Feb 21, 2018 10:53 am

fishandgolf wrote:
Wed Feb 21, 2018 10:31 am
"A Higher Call" .....One of the most inspiring books I ever read. An incredible true story about a American and German pilot during WWII


December, 1943: A badly damaged American bomber struggles to fly over wartime Germany. At the controls is twenty-one-year-old Second Lieutenant Charlie Brown. Half his crew lay wounded or dead on this, their first mission. Suddenly, a Messerschmitt fighter pulls up on the bomber’s tail. The pilot is German ace Franz Stigler—and he can destroy the young American crew with the squeeze of a trigger...

What happened next would defy imagination and later be called “the most incredible encounter between enemies in World War II.”

The U.S. 8th Air Force would later classify what happened between them as “top secret.” It was an act that Franz could never mention for fear of facing a firing squad. It was the encounter that would haunt both Charlie and Franz for forty years until, as old men, they would search the world for each other, a last mission that could change their lives forever.

Here is the link for the book.....over 4000+ 5 star reviews.........
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0095ZQ36G/re ... TF8&btkr=1

Here's a short video clip of the actual meeting between the two pilots.....46 years later....absolutely incredible.....
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZRKQvmT3Xhs
Wonderful touching video.
Ordered the book.
mahalo,
j

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

Post by ruralavalon » Thu Feb 22, 2018 3:59 pm

Havana Hustle, by John Leslie.

In the lower Keys an ex-cop from Miami and an assistant prosecutor search for a key witness in the murder prosecution of the brother of a local big wig, amid a bunch of corrupt politicians.
"Everything should be as simple as it is, but not simpler." - Albert Einstein | Wiki article link:Getting Started

MP173
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by MP173 » Thu Feb 22, 2018 4:23 pm

"Steely Dan FAQ" by Anthony Robustelli.

When I saw this book at the library (new book section) I was elated. There just isnt much about Walter Becker and Donald Fagan out there. They kept a purposefully low profile. Becker's death came as a blow to many ( including me) last fall.

Wow....this book, without being a biography really digs deep with profiles of their early lives, meeting at Bard College, staff writers, and the move to California. The band is formed and then dismantled as Becker/Fagan have their vision for music. Each album is profiled with descriptions of each song including session musicians and insite to lyrics. Their blend of smooth music with dark lyrics is legendary.

I actually couldnt finish the book. Got close tho. Details about every tour in the last decade left me ready to move on. But, dont get me wrong...if you are a fan of the group, read this book. It is worth it. Just be ready for lots of details.

My favorite SD song...toss up between "Dont Take Me Alive, "King of the World" and of course "My Old School". Just missing the cut..."Razor Boy", " Black Friday", "Royal Scam" & "Kid Charlemagne". Dark lyrics for all of those.

Ed

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by Mosin9130 » Thu Feb 22, 2018 8:38 pm

Finally reading "The Millionaire Next Door" and its hard to put down. Incredible insight/perspective and nice to have in the back of ones mind when coworkers talk about buying Raptors and Vipers (because enough people don't understand they drive an M5) as soon as they pay off their yearly accumulated credit card debt with an upcoming bonus!

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Blueskies123
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by Blueskies123 » Thu Feb 22, 2018 9:03 pm

The Lessons of History by Will and Ariel Durant. At first I was disappointed by how short the book was but the writing is sublime. I had forgotten how captivating people used to be able to write, not so much these days. I was able to read it in about week spending an hour to two each day. I had to go back and re-read pages or chapters, they so remarkable.

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

Post by Wildebeest » Fri Feb 23, 2018 7:53 pm

Fiction versus non-fiction. Sometimes it is hard to decide what you are reading.

Currently I am on a non-fiction bender. I loved Nassim Taleb's "The black swan" and did not realize what a great book it was till I read "Fooled by Randomness: The Hidden Role of Chance in Life and in the Markets" then I read "Anti Fragility" a downer after reading "Fooled by randomness". I just started Mandelbroit's " The (Mis) behavior of markets ". It is mind blowing at least for me.

What books changed your outlook on how you should invest?
The Golden Rule: One should treat others as one would like others to treat oneself.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by MP173 » Sat Feb 24, 2018 2:16 pm

"Tin City" by David Housewright.

Housewright's McKenzie series is quickly becoming one of my favorite "charactor novels". McKenzie is an ex cop in Twin Cities who years earlier had resigned and then nabbed an embezzler and claimed a large reward, thus setting himself up financially. He now "helps" friends.

In this book, a army vet friend of his father is murdered and McKenzie tracks down the killer which leads him to an FBI agent who is tracking down a Mafia kingpin.

Really good series.

Ed

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by jdb » Sat Feb 24, 2018 9:27 pm

Finished three books in past two weeks. One was wonderful, other two were interesting at least for first half but then ended up skimming. The best was the new translation of Odyssey by Emily Wilson, wonderful translation which I really enjoyed. Highly recommend. And then read The Lost Species, Great Expeditions in the Collections of Natural History Museums by Christopher Kemp. Fascinating story of taxonomy where lost and unknown species are discovered in the collections of great natural history museums of the world, enjoyed the first half of book but then got to be too many exotic species from remote locations. But certainly have new respect for the role of museums like the Field Museum and American Museum of Natural History and Smithsonian and their extensive collections. And then on to The Triumph of Christianity by Bart Ehrman, the story of how Christianity ended up the primary religion of the Roman Empire. Enjoyed the discussions of Roman pagan religions compared to Christianity but ended up skimming last half of book, still much prefer the narrative written over 250 years ago by one of my favorite historians, Edward Gibbon in The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, if only for its wonderful footnotes. Now on to a re-read of my favorite novel, War and Peace, where the Russian characters with their multi syllabic names have become my friends, and which should occupy at least a month of my leisure reading time.

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

Post by Wildebeest » Sat Feb 24, 2018 10:04 pm

I am reading " Enlightenment now" by Steven Pinker. I am at page 244 now and so far it is a great book.

So much to learn. It is much easier to read that " The better angels of our nature" and while I thought that was a great book, this one is better.
The Golden Rule: One should treat others as one would like others to treat oneself.

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

Post by Wildebeest » Sun Feb 25, 2018 8:54 pm

retracted.
Last edited by Wildebeest on Sun Feb 25, 2018 8:59 pm, edited 1 time in total.
The Golden Rule: One should treat others as one would like others to treat oneself.

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

Post by Wildebeest » Sun Feb 25, 2018 8:58 pm

I finished the book, "Enlightenment now" by Steven Pinker and really enjoyed it. I will read it again. If only to recall the numbers.

Five stars. Even if he goes a little over board at the end.
The Golden Rule: One should treat others as one would like others to treat oneself.

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

Post by ruralavalon » Mon Feb 26, 2018 8:13 am

Under Cover of Daylight, by James W. Hall.

The hero is an orphan, now in his 30s, who lives on Key Largo and ties bonefish flies for a living. His adoptive mother and his girlfriend are striving to protect an endangered species of rat from condo developers, then the mayhem begins.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by Valuethinker » Mon Feb 26, 2018 12:28 pm

https://www.amazon.com/Water-Will-Come- ... 031626024X

Jeff Goodell The Water Will Come. I found it eye opening, and I have taken a university course in this area - he neatly ties together the implications of the latest findings.

He writes very well - normally for Rolling Stone.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by Valuethinker » Mon Feb 26, 2018 12:31 pm

Wildebeest wrote:
Fri Feb 23, 2018 7:53 pm
Fiction versus non-fiction. Sometimes it is hard to decide what you are reading.

Currently I am on a non-fiction bender. I loved Nassim Taleb's "The black swan" and did not realize what a great book it was till I read "Fooled by Randomness: The Hidden Role of Chance in Life and in the Markets" then I read "Anti Fragility" a downer after reading "Fooled by randomness". I just started Mandelbroit's " The (Mis) behavior of markets ". It is mind blowing at least for me.

What books changed your outlook on how you should invest?
I agree re Misbehaviour of Markets. Changed my entire view of investing. The salience of "unlikely" risks. 2008-09 comes to mind.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by Valuethinker » Mon Feb 26, 2018 12:54 pm

Carl53 wrote:
Sat Feb 17, 2018 4:56 am
1453 by Roger Crowley. Its subtitle is 'The Holy War for Constantinople and The Clash of Islam and The West'.

The final collapse of the Byzantium empire occurred when certain Europeans either captured or in some cases for personal gain transferred technology (building massive cannons) to the those that had been attacking Constantinople's walls sporadically over many centuries.
A related problem was the split in Christianity between the Roman Catholic west and the Eastern Orthodox church. Indeed "the Franks" (Crusaders) had sacked Constantinople in 1204 and it never regained its former glory-- was a century before a Byzantine Emperor ruled there again, over a rump state.

The Pope and the Western political leaders never made any great effort to help Constantinople in its final struggle. In fact the Genoese colony across the Horn remained neutral territory. Perhaps because Urban (the Hungarian who made the great Bombard?) was Hungarian (i.e. Catholic) he felt justified in so doing.

Contrast that to the Knights of St John at Malta (1565) and the combined fleet under Don John of Austria, that stopped the Ottomans at their high water mark, the Battle of Lepanto (1571). There, the Pope pulled together Catholic Europe (wracked by Reformation) into a coalition to fight the invaders.

To be fair, Europe in 1452 had been devastated by the Plague and the end of Medieval Civilization. Population and economy were probably a lot smaller than they were in 1340 before the Black Death (I'd have to see if there are any estimates). And Italy was in the grips of the turmoil of creativity and war that was the Renaissance. Spain was only just completing the Reconquista by taking Granada from the Moors (1492 from memory).

The Ottomans took over (with less than their full customary sack) and turned out to be relatively good conservators of the place- -whatever the brutality of their empire as a whole.

Throughout the next 2-3 centuries the Protestant rules of Europe were not averse to using the Ottomans as a tool against the Pope and the Catholic rulers (some of whom did the same thing against other Catholic rulers).

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by azurekep » Mon Feb 26, 2018 12:58 pm

I finished One L by Scott Turow and it was excellent. Turow taught creative writing at Stanford before deciding to go to Harvard Law School (HLS) in 1975, so he was already an accomplished writer. The characterizations of his fellow students, study mates, and professors was as one would expect from a talented novelist. The book was an emotional roller coaster in terms of the initial euphoria and comraderie which soon gives way to competitiveness and resentment, despair at the crushing work load, and the sense that law school was changing their moral values. The system was in one word: inhumane. In an aferward, Turow updates on HLS reforms, which apparently aren't much, but I can't be sure since unlike the rest of the book, the afterward was written in a very abstract, wordy way.

The most surprising take-away from the book (for me) is that the hidden goal of HLS is to create law professors not practicing lawyers. Law professors are considered the elite of the elite. Most of the HLS training is not practical and a massive amount of OJT is needed once a graduate is accepted into a law firm.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by azurekep » Mon Feb 26, 2018 12:59 pm

Now reading:

Night Moves by Jonathan Kellerman
Alex Delaware Series - Book 33

I had been reluctant to start this series since it's about a psychologist — and I had visions of a (boring) clinical practice setting — but in this book Delaware is simply partnering with the homicide detective on a murder investigation. The investigation leads in many directions along the southern California coast with an assortment of unusual characters. A page-turner.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by ekid » Mon Feb 26, 2018 1:26 pm

"Educated"- Tara Westover

Young woman has never attended school; has no birth certificate until nine years old goes to Cambridge- the one in Britain!
Earned a MPhil there, and eventually a Phd.

Her father and one brother was bipolar. She had a rough childhood. Could YOU do that?

Anyone else mention this book yet?

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

Post by bertilak » Mon Feb 26, 2018 1:31 pm

Carl53 wrote:
Sat Feb 17, 2018 4:56 am
1453 by Roger Crowley. Its subtitle is 'The Holy War for Constantinople and The Clash of Islam and The West'.

The final collapse of the Byzantium empire occurred when certain Europeans either captured or in some cases for personal gain transferred technology (building massive cannons) to the those that had been attacking Constantinople's walls sporadically over many centuries.
I read The Fall of Constantinople 1453 by Steve Runciman a few years back and commented on it here. I may take a look at Crowley and you may find Runciman interesting.

I still have John J. Norwich's three volume Byzantium on my to-do list. I got bogged down and distracted part way through the first volume and will need to start it all over! My initial comments are here.
May neither drought nor rain nor blizzard disturb the joy juice in your gizzard. -- Squire Omar Barker, the Cowboy Poet

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by Carl53 » Mon Feb 26, 2018 3:33 pm

Valuethinker wrote:
Mon Feb 26, 2018 12:54 pm
Carl53 wrote:
Sat Feb 17, 2018 4:56 am
1453 by Roger Crowley. Its subtitle is 'The Holy War for Constantinople and The Clash of Islam and The West'.

The final collapse of the Byzantium empire occurred when certain Europeans either captured or in some cases for personal gain transferred technology (building massive cannons) to the those that had been attacking Constantinople's walls sporadically over many centuries.
A related problem was the split in Christianity between the Roman Catholic west and the Eastern Orthodox church. Indeed "the Franks" (Crusaders) had sacked Constantinople in 1204 and it never regained its former glory-- was a century before a Byzantine Emperor ruled there again, over a rump state.

The Pope and the Western political leaders never made any great effort to help Constantinople in its final struggle. In fact the Genoese colony across the Horn remained neutral territory. Perhaps because Urban (the Hungarian who made the great Bombard?) was Hungarian (i.e. Catholic) he felt justified in so doing.

Contrast that to the Knights of St John at Malta (1565) and the combined fleet under Don John of Austria, that stopped the Ottomans at their high water mark, the Battle of Lepanto (1571). There, the Pope pulled together Catholic Europe (wracked by Reformation) into a coalition to fight the invaders.

To be fair, Europe in 1452 had been devastated by the Plague and the end of Medieval Civilization. Population and economy were probably a lot smaller than they were in 1340 before the Black Death (I'd have to see if there are any estimates). And Italy was in the grips of the turmoil of creativity and war that was the Renaissance. Spain was only just completing the Reconquista by taking Granada from the Moors (1492 from memory).

The Ottomans took over (with less than their full customary sack) and turned out to be relatively good conservators of the place- -whatever the brutality of their empire as a whole.

Throughout the next 2-3 centuries the Protestant rules of Europe were not averse to using the Ottomans as a tool against the Pope and the Catholic rulers (some of whom did the same thing against other Catholic rulers).
Interesting additional commentary.

Carl53
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by Carl53 » Mon Feb 26, 2018 3:38 pm

bertilak wrote:
Mon Feb 26, 2018 1:31 pm
Carl53 wrote:
Sat Feb 17, 2018 4:56 am
1453 by Roger Crowley. Its subtitle is 'The Holy War for Constantinople and The Clash of Islam and The West'.

The final collapse of the Byzantium empire occurred when certain Europeans either captured or in some cases for personal gain transferred technology (building massive cannons) to the those that had been attacking Constantinople's walls sporadically over many centuries.
I read The Fall of Constantinople 1453 by Steve Runciman a few years back and commented on it here. I may take a look at Crowley and you may find Runciman interesting.

I still have John J. Norwich's three volume Byzantium on my to-do list. I got bogged down and distracted part way through the first volume and will need to start it all over! My initial comments are here.
Thanks for the suggestion. I saw your comment about Groundhog Day applying to the Middle East. Most appropriate.

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

Post by lthenderson » Tue Feb 27, 2018 9:45 am

I just finished reading "Mayflower: A Story of Courage, Community, and War" by Nathaniel Philbrick. Once again, I have read a book that makes me ponder what the heck the people who made my history book in school were smoking. Like probably most people, I was under the impression that the Pilgrims arriving on the Mayflower landed at Plymouth Rock, started a town, got help from a native named Squanto who taught them how to plant corn and celebrated the abundance of crops with the feast we now called Thanksgiving. Turns out that Plymouth Rock was something invented almost 100 years later, Squanto used the Pilgrims unsuccessfully to try and become the most powerful leader in the region, the Pilgrims pretty much starved for years, and once they got established, spent the next 50 years killing the surrounding Indians!

Nathaniel Philbrick is also the author of "In the Heart of the Sea" which tells the story that became the inspiration for the book Moby Dick which I enjoyed tremendously and why I purchased this book. While "In the Heart of the Sea" is a page turner from beginning to end, the last third of this book kind of dragged me down as Philbrick went into detail about the war between the Pilgrims and the native Americans. I found it hard to keep track of the myriad of Indian chiefs and various Mayflower descendants and would have rather had a more brief synopsis of this period. It perks up again during the last chapter as Philbrick recounts the history of "Plymouth Rock" and a manuscript written by one of the original Mayflower settlers and how both have survived through the years.

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

Post by ruralavalon » Tue Feb 27, 2018 10:37 am

lthenderson wrote:
Tue Feb 27, 2018 9:45 am
I just finished reading "Mayflower: A Story of Courage, Community, and War" by Nathaniel Philbrick. Once again, I have read a book that makes me ponder what the heck the people who made my history book in school were smoking. Like probably most people, I was under the impression that the Pilgrims arriving on the Mayflower landed at Plymouth Rock, started a town, got help from a native named Squanto who taught them how to plant corn and celebrated the abundance of crops with the feast we now called Thanksgiving. Turns out that Plymouth Rock was something invented almost 100 years later, Squanto used the Pilgrims unsuccessfully to try and become the most powerful leader in the region, the Pilgrims pretty much starved for years, and once they got established, spent the next 50 years killing the surrounding Indians!

Nathaniel Philbrick is also the author of "In the Heart of the Sea" which tells the story that became the inspiration for the book Moby Dick which I enjoyed tremendously and why I purchased this book. While "In the Heart of the Sea" is a page turner from beginning to end, the last third of this book kind of dragged me down as Philbrick went into detail about the war between the Pilgrims and the native Americans. I found it hard to keep track of the myriad of Indian chiefs and various Mayflower descendants and would have rather had a more brief synopsis of this period. It perks up again during the last chapter as Philbrick recounts the history of "Plymouth Rock" and a manuscript written by one of the original Mayflower settlers and how both have survived through the years.
I read both books, and enjoyed and recommend both.

A school history book is boring and insipid in comparison to books like these. Both of Phillbrick's books and his other histories are well worth reading, very informative and thoroughly enjoyable.
"Everything should be as simple as it is, but not simpler." - Albert Einstein | Wiki article link:Getting Started

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

Post by sixtyforty » Tue Feb 27, 2018 7:56 pm

Beneath A Scarlet Sky. Backdrop is WWII in Italy. I'm only halfway through but pretty good.
"Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication" - Leonardo Da Vinci

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

Post by Freefun » Wed Feb 28, 2018 3:56 pm

How to get filthy rich in rising Asia
By mohsin hamid. Great book.
Remember when you wanted what you currently have?

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

Post by azurekep » Thu Mar 01, 2018 1:01 am

azurekep wrote:
Mon Feb 26, 2018 12:59 pm
Night Moves by Jonathan Kellerman
Alex Delaware Series - Book 33
I finished Night Moves, and it remained a page-turner throughout. It had imaginative plotting along with in-depth backstories on some of the more interesting characters. The initial crime involved an unidentified body dumped in the home of a suburban family. Other crimes took place in a no-tell motel, a cabin at the lake, etc. all appearing related in some mystifying way. Two of the more interesting characters were a creepy comic-book artist and a sympathetic Don-Quixote do-gooder who was always going on secret advertures and trying to help people in need.

On a totally unrelated front, since a large marine mammal is often the topic of this thread, I thought this passage might be of interest:
“All I know is Cory.”
“Hard to see the Cory I’m thinking of as a murder suspect.”
“Nice kid, huh?”
“Nice enough, but it’s kind of complicated,” said Braxton. “I’m on my way to lunch. You have time?”
“You bet. Where?”
“I was planning on Burger King.”
“Upgrade, Sheila. On me.”
“Well, that’s nice of you, Milo, but not necessary.”
“Life’s about more than necessity, Sheila. Name a place with tablecloths.”
“Hmm. You into seafood?”
“Like a shark.”
Braxton laughed. “Cabrillo just north of Stearn’s Wharf. New place they say is good. Moby Richard.”
“Cute,” said Milo. “They call me Fishmeal.”
“Pardon?”
“See you in ten.”

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by blmarsha123 » Fri Mar 02, 2018 1:20 pm

Ike and McCarthy: Dwight Eisenhower's Secret Campaign Against Joseph McCarthy by David A. Nichols

Picked it up because I was interested in a different reading about the issue of whether or not Ike threw Marshall under the bus. Written by a self described authority on Eisenhower, there was a lot that I expected to find but maybe even more that I didn't. I was still left with a couple of questions, but got a much better understanding of the issues, the times, and the dangers - even to an overwhelmingly popular hero and internationally respected leader.

I was amazed at some of the quotes and policy positions from a Republican president. For example, "Waging Peace" was a phrase that he often used and backed up in an early speech that included this: "Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired signifies, in the final sense, a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and are not clothed. This world in arms is not spending money alone. It is spending the sweat of its laborers, the genius of its scientists, the hopes of its children." Powerful stuff. And his overriding strategy in dealing with McCarthy was to "Don't demean myself or the Presidency by getting in the gutter with him."

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by bertilak » Fri Mar 02, 2018 5:49 pm

bertilak wrote:
Mon Feb 05, 2018 11:35 am
Call me Ishmael.

You may remember my earlier comments about my voyage through Melville’s Moby-Dick (his hyphen). This Is an update.
Another update -- I finally finished. It was a long and impressive voyage.

One has to admire Melville's craft. One could go into the social implications of 19th century America. One could focus on the powerful language (Priest's sermon near the beginning, Ahab's soliloquies and emotional manipulation of the crew). One could focus on the plot and the relentless build up of suspense and foreshadowing. One could focus on the adventure of whaling. One can enjoy the humor and satire.

It's all there and it pulls you in.
Last edited by bertilak on Sat Mar 03, 2018 7:50 am, edited 1 time in total.
May neither drought nor rain nor blizzard disturb the joy juice in your gizzard. -- Squire Omar Barker, the Cowboy Poet

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

Post by jdb » Fri Mar 02, 2018 6:06 pm

bertilak wrote:
Fri Mar 02, 2018 5:49 pm
bertilak wrote:
Mon Feb 05, 2018 11:35 am
Call me Ishmael.

You may remember my earlier comments about my voyage through Melville’s Moby-Dick (his hyphen). This Is an update.
Another update -- I finally finished. It was a long and impressive voyage.

One has to admire Melville's craft. One could go into the social implications of 19th century America. One could focus on the powerful language (Proiest's sermon near the beginning, Ahab's soliloquies and emotional manipulation of the crew). One could focus on the plot and the relentless build up of suspense and foreshadowing. One could focus on the adventure of whaling. One can enjoy the humor and satire.

It's all there and it pulls you in.
OK you convinced me. When I finish my annual re-read of War and Peace (I still have over 900 pages to go and in no rush, I know the ending) will read Moby-Dick. It has been many years. Thanks for the recommendation.

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market timer
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by market timer » Sat Mar 03, 2018 8:26 am

Have nearly finished Skin in the Game, by Nassim Taleb. I am a fan of his earlier works, but this one is a letdown. Maybe I'm too familiar with the material already, from earlier studies on contract theory and law & economics. The idea that there are agency problems is not that profound, and the rambling style was a bit too much for me this time. Still envy his flaneur lifestyle, though. Now I'm wondering how to get a quarter-time professor gig.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by ruralavalon » Sat Mar 03, 2018 3:19 pm

Mango Bay, by Bill Myers.

An unemployed, divorced IT guy lives with his cat in a RV park in Southwest Florida, and has adventures. Not well written, kind of silly, definitely not another Moby-Dick.
"Everything should be as simple as it is, but not simpler." - Albert Einstein | Wiki article link:Getting Started

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

Post by FreeAtLast » Sat Mar 03, 2018 9:08 pm

"The Raymond Chandler Omnibus", Alfred A. Knopf NY (1976):

- The Big Sleep (1939)
- Farewell, My Lovely (1940)
- The High Window (1942)
- The Lady of the Lake (1943)

With all the police procedurals and murder mysteries that I have read in my life, it is embarrassing that I finally got around to reading Chandler. Dashiell Hammitt and he set the standard for and are the inspiration of most of the American private detective stories of the last 90 years. These four novelettes are widely considered to be Chandler's best efforts. Dissolute and mendacious rich folk, femme fatales, dangerous crime bosses, corrupt cops, fresh corpses, and a collection of desperate ne'er-do-wells populate his intricate plots. Philip Marlowe is the protagonist shamus and he gets most of his daily nutrition from booze and cigarettes. Warning - Chandler depicts the sleazy side of 1940's Los Angeles in great detail and the concept of political correctness had not yet been invented.
Note #1: In "The Big Sleep", Chandler left one murder unresolved. Can you determine whose it was?
Note #2: Take the time to view a copy of Warner Brothers' 1946 release of "The Big Sleep". Humphrey Bogart plays Marlowe as only Bogie could. He is accompanied in the film by three excellent, classy, and gorgeous actresses, namely Lauren Bacall, Dorothy Malone, and Martha Vickers. Enjoy.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by bertilak » Sat Mar 03, 2018 9:24 pm

FreeAtLast wrote:
Sat Mar 03, 2018 9:08 pm
"The Raymond Chandler Omnibus", Alfred A. Knopf NY (1976):

- Farewell, My Lovely (1940)
There is a line early on in that book where Marlow describes his first glimpse of Moose Malloy (the guy whose "lovely" is in the title):
  • He was a big man but not more than six feet five inches tall and not wider than a beer truck.
Can anyone name that rhetorical device? I used to know but cannot remember nor find mention of it anymore. It's the highlighted part I'm talking about -- kinda like a reverse exaggeration.

Maybe it's just Chandleresque wise-guy talk.

WAIT! I just Goolged "Chandlersque" and it came back with "typically using lyrical (and frequently exaggerated) similes." See https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/Chandleresque. Maybe that's it or maybe there is a more formal designation. I don't think the above quote is exactly a simile -- more of an analogy.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by FreeAtLast » Sat Mar 03, 2018 9:39 pm

bertilak wrote:
Sat Mar 03, 2018 9:24 pm
FreeAtLast wrote:
Sat Mar 03, 2018 9:08 pm
"The Raymond Chandler Omnibus", Alfred A. Knopf NY (1976):

- Farewell, My Lovely (1940)
There is a line early on in that book where Marlow describes his first glimpse of Moose Malloy (the guy whose "lovely" is in the title).
  • He was a big man but not more than six feet five inches tall and not wider than a beer truck.
Can anyone name that rhetorical device? I used to know but cannot remember nor find mention of it anymore. It's the highlighted part I'm talking about -- kinda like a reverse exaggeration.

Maybe it's just Chandleresque wise-guy talk.

WAIT! I just Goolged "Chandlersque" and it came back with "typically using lyrical (and frequently exaggerated) similes." See https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/Chandleresque. Maybe that's it or maybe there is a more formal designation. I don't think the above quote is exactly a simile -- more of an analogy.
Bertilak -

Litotes?

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

Post by bertilak » Sat Mar 03, 2018 9:42 pm

FreeAtLast wrote:
Sat Mar 03, 2018 9:39 pm
Litotes?
I'm pretty sure that's what I was looking for.

Anyway, I like it.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by bengal22 » Sat Mar 03, 2018 10:01 pm

azurekep wrote:
Sat Jan 13, 2018 9:55 pm
nisiprius wrote:
Sat Jan 13, 2018 9:09 pm
steve roy wrote:
Sat Jan 13, 2018 8:57 pm
...I Just finished “Fire and Fury”...
I have, too.

I will say these things: 1) it is a long book that held my interest from beginning to end. The long excerpt in New York magazine did not contain everything in the book that was worth reading.
Fire and Fury was the other book I finished reading. I didn't want to be the first to report. :)

Since the B word (Bannon) has already been uttered, I'll outline the "plot" for those who haven't read it. It's basically about three power centers in the White House: The Bannon faction, the Javanka faction and the Rence Priebus faction. The first two are in powerful opposition to each other.

Bannon seems to be the one with the brains in the White House, however horrendous many of us think about his ideas. He is well-read and observes goings-on in the White House with Shakespearean drama and a keen sense of irony. He is self-aware enough to know that he can't do a single thing as the White House careens towards disaster. I gotta say, I got a better impression of Bannon reading the book, and he seems to be the primary source of WH staff input to the book.
2) There is something delightful about the fact that this book has now shot up to rank #4,117 at Amazon, and is apparently producing a nice little windfall for Randall Hansen. (However, I have no plans to read it).

Image
Hilarious. :mrgreen:
I suspect book is a work of fiction for the most part.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by LadyGeek » Sat Mar 03, 2018 10:03 pm

I just finished In Fury Born, by David Weber. Military space opera with an alien touch. It's action packed, I liked it.

Recommended for quite some time, I just started Nudge: Improving Decisions About Health, Wealth, and Happiness, by Richard H. Thaler and Cass R. Sunstein. Interesting, and a nice change of pace from sci-fi.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by miles monroe » Sun Mar 04, 2018 8:19 am

red sparrow.

and in a week or so that'll be in the "what movie ya watching" thread.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by blaugranamd » Sun Mar 04, 2018 10:19 am

jdb wrote:
Fri Mar 02, 2018 6:06 pm
bertilak wrote:
Fri Mar 02, 2018 5:49 pm
bertilak wrote:
Mon Feb 05, 2018 11:35 am
Call me Ishmael.

You may remember my earlier comments about my voyage through Melville’s Moby-Dick (his hyphen). This Is an update.
Another update -- I finally finished. It was a long and impressive voyage.

One has to admire Melville's craft. One could go into the social implications of 19th century America. One could focus on the powerful language (Proiest's sermon near the beginning, Ahab's soliloquies and emotional manipulation of the crew). One could focus on the plot and the relentless build up of suspense and foreshadowing. One could focus on the adventure of whaling. One can enjoy the humor and satire.

It's all there and it pulls you in.
OK you convinced me. When I finish my annual re-read of War and Peace (I still have over 900 pages to go and in no rush, I know the ending) will read Moby-Dick. It has been many years. Thanks for the recommendation.
About 1/3rd through Moby Dick myself. Just finished "A Guide to the Good Life" on Roman Stoicism
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by azurekep » Sun Mar 04, 2018 3:32 pm

I just started Last Seen by Rick Mofina.

The book begins with a couple taking their 9-year-old son to the Chambers of Dread -- a ghoulish house of horrors -- at the local carnival. The son never comes out.

A parent's worst nightmare.

The horror house was described so vividly, I don't think anyone reading would ever comtemplate visiting one. The horrors are tactile in addition to visual and auditory.

When the carnival is notified of the missing boy and the lights are turned back on in the chambers, everything looks normal. But no boy. The IR surveillance cameras inside the chambers were working in real-time, but the playback function is broken, so they can't trace the boy's path.

The boy's father is a crime reporter for a Chicago newspaper, so like all other Mofina books, the reporter will act as investigator along with the police. I expect the book to be good.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by Halicar » Sun Mar 04, 2018 3:59 pm

Unsolved! by Craig Bauer, about unsolved cyphers and codes throughout history, for example the Voynich Manuscript and the Zodiac killer's cyphers. The subject matter is fascinating, but I'm not very impressed with the writing style--very casual and chatty, and a bit meandering.

Recently finished The Obstacle is the Way by Ryan Holiday. Mixed feelings on this one too. Purports to be about Stoic philosophy but is pretty standard self-help fare. About 30% comprised of anecdotes about celebrities and historical figures who overcame adversity.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by ShabonScribe » Sun Mar 04, 2018 9:39 pm

I read a lot for work - I'm a college professor - but the reading I manage to do for fun is eclectic.

I just finished Champions Way about the football-driven state of academic corruption at Florida State University. It's a quick read with some insights on, among other things, the tax-exempt status of collegiate athletic programs in the United States.

I'm currently working on Walter Isaacson's Leonardo Da Vinci. Next in the queue is Money Changes Everything by William Goetzmann.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by climber2020 » Sun Mar 04, 2018 9:43 pm

Currently reading The Speed of Dark by Elizabeth Moon. It's an interesting read told from the perspective of an adult with autism. Gradually working my way through all the Nebula Award winners.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by Geno » Sun Mar 04, 2018 10:18 pm

A pope and a president John Paul II , Ronald Reagan and the extraordinary untold story of the 20th century

by Paul Kengor
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by MP173 » Sun Mar 04, 2018 10:48 pm

"The Chalk Man" by CJ Tudor.

Big hype, but this book didnt quite deliver for me. The story is told in alternating chapters between 1986, which the narrator and friends are 12 years old and discover a dead girl and 2016 when a death to one of the friends occurs.

This was ok but not as big as I expected.

Ed

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by lthenderson » Tue Mar 06, 2018 2:26 pm

Just finished "A Deadly Wandering: A Tale of Tragedy and Redemption in the Age of Attention" by Matt Richtel

This book is centered around one of the first (may have been the first) prosecutions of texting and driving. Reggie Shaw, a young Mormon kid, sideswipes a car containing two rocket scientists on their way to work and they end up dying in the ensuing wreck. The book follows the ensuing years as the trial made it's way into court and covers the outcome and aftermath of the tragedy. Perhaps more interesting is that the story is interspersed with various studies that detail how texting and cell phones in general can alter the brain and affect how we interact with the world around us on a daily basis. I found it to be a real page turner and I know that it will affect my phone/driving habits in the future.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by ruralavalon » Thu Mar 08, 2018 8:52 am

La Florida, by Aleck Loker.

This is a history of early Spanish exploration and settlements in North America. It is not limited to the widely known forays in Florida, Texas and New Mexico, but covers less widely known explorations or settlement attempts in the Carolinas, Alabama, the Mississippi basin, and the Great Plains.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by azurekep » Sat Mar 10, 2018 6:01 pm

azurekep wrote:
Sun Mar 04, 2018 3:32 pm
I just started Last Seen by Rick Mofina.

The book begins with a couple taking their 9-year-old son to the Chambers of Dread -- a ghoulish house of horrors -- at the local carnival. The son never comes out.

A parent's worst nightmare.

The horror house was described so vividly, I don't think anyone reading would ever comtemplate visiting one. The horrors are tactile in addition to visual and auditory.

When the carnival is notified of the missing boy and the lights are turned back on in the chambers, everything looks normal. But no boy. The IR surveillance cameras inside the chambers were working in real-time, but the playback function is broken, so they can't trace the boy's path.

The boy's father is a crime reporter for a Chicago newspaper, so like all other Mofina books, the reporter will act as investigator along with the police. I expect the book to be good.
I finished Last Seen.

Mofina books usually focus on newsroom imperatives, such as getting the story before the competition, and freelance sleuthing by a crime reporter against the wishes of law enforcement.

In this case, the focus was strictly on the investigation by the professionals -- FBI and police -- and the emotions of everyone involved, including the parents of the missing child. There was tension and suspicion all around.

For me, the book was good enough, giving a realistic look under the hood of a missing child investigation. For those wanting more of a thriller with a hero protagonist determined to solve a crime on his own, the previous Mofina books would be more up their alley.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by Valuethinker » Sun Mar 11, 2018 1:34 pm

ruralavalon wrote:
Thu Mar 08, 2018 8:52 am
La Florida, by Aleck Loker.

This is a history of early Spanish exploration and settlements in North America. It is not limited to the widely known forays in Florida, Texas and New Mexico, but covers less widely known explorations or settlement attempts in the Carolinas, Alabama, the Mississippi basin, and the Great Plains.
Thank you. That looks very interesting.

I believe there is some thought that a wobble in the climate had an impact on this one. I can't remember where I read it and a quick google search at this point doesn't find it (it might have been Geoffrey Parker The World Crisis, but I have only skimmed that one).

https://warwick.ac.uk/fac/arts/history/ ... hr2008.pdf

The late 1500s-late 1600s saw a somewhat colder Northern Hemisphere associated with 1. a local minimum in solar insolation (possibly) and 2. a number of volcanoes in the early 1600s (more definitive). As a result:

- Roanoke Island colony failed due to drought. Jamestown colony suffered from a brutal winter

- incidence of disease and cold was higher in the southern USA than normal, thus persuading the Spanish to withdraw from their colonies (as above)

EDIT

I suspect it was a review of this book

http://www.hup.harvard.edu/catalog.php? ... nt=reviews

http://www.nybooks.com/articles/2017/11 ... -conquest/

https://www.historicalclimatology.com/b ... th-america
Planners and promoters of these expeditions tended to fill the gaps in their knowledge with self-serving rationalizations. Early voyages in search of a Northwest Passage over Canada epitomized the problem. Every encounter with extreme cold or sea ice could be explained away as some local aberration or accident. Similar rationalizations led Spaniards to look for Mediterranean conditions and a “new Andalusia” in Georgia and the Carolinas, and inspired English visions of silk, spices, and sugar in Virginia and even New England.

​For this reason, early European explorers and colonists were sure to be disappointed with the climates of North America. What turned disappointment into disaster were the extreme conditions typical of the Little Ice Age. On examining the range of proxy and written evidence for North American climates, I found the same sort of anomalies that caused trouble for the Ottoman Empire. The epic drought and extreme cold during Jamestown’s “starving time” of 1609-10 is only the most famous example. In the 1540s, Spanish expeditions in California, the Southwest, and Southeast all encountered freezing winters with heavy snows where they would rarely be found today.
Picture
A seventeenth-century depiction of the Jamestown colony, which settlers briefly abandoned amid a long drought.

​Then from the late 1500s to the turn of the 17th century, a series of large volcanic eruptions brought global temperatures lower still. In 1601, for instance, the Rio Grande froze over near today’s Albuquerque; frost and drought brought famine to the Pueblos; and Juan de Oñate’s conquest of New Mexico nearly collapsed from hunger and desertions. French settlers in New England and Canada perished in the long winters that decade, and the little-remembered English colony at Sagadahoc, Maine gave up in 1608 after less than a year, its “hopes . . . frozen to death” in the words of one contemporary.

Cold and drought, as well as storms, afflicted colonial expeditions in different ways. Crops failed and animals died. Diseases spread from exposure, poor water supplies, and malnutrition. Long winters without fresh food brought scurvy. Supply ships were lost when needed most. Competition for food and fuel engendered conflict between European invaders and Native Americans, who also had to adapt to Little Ice Age conditions.

Yet evolving perceptions of North America’s climates were just as consequential as realities. Years or even decades of experience with parts of the continent did not always translate into realistic appraisals of their climates or accurate planning. Sometimes when the high hopes of early expeditions met the shock of unexpected extremes, they gave way to exaggerated disparagement and despair. Around the 1570s, after decades of disappointment, Spanish officials began to dismiss the whole of La Florida (today’s Southeastern United States) as “worthless,” and the near collapse of Spanish New Mexico left a similarly negative impression among officials in Mexico and Spain.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by R. ANDERSON » Sun Mar 11, 2018 2:26 pm

I suggest "A World In Disarray" by Richard Haas, Foreign Affairs Council because it provides insight to the future and what we must do to ensure we and our children and our grandchildren have one

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