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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Posted: Thu Feb 07, 2013 8:44 pm
by nisiprius
It's not even a whole book... but I'm taking a shot at "Self-Reliance" by Ralph Waldo Emerson. See, someone in the forum complimented me on quoting Emerson and I felt like a total phony, because the sum total of all I know of Emerson is "Trust thyself: every heart vibrates to that iron string" and "A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds." I have a dim dark memory of being assigned "Self-Reliance" at some point in high school or college, but I'm not sure that I read it even then.

I did read Louisa May Alcott's Transcendental Wild Oats a few weeks ago, and I need to give her another try. What a delightfully snarky bit of satire.

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Posted: Thu Feb 07, 2013 10:04 pm
by Juniormint
How to Train Your Dragon by Cressida Cowell. Fell in love with the movie and just had to read the books. They're actually pretty awesome.

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Posted: Thu Feb 07, 2013 10:07 pm
by Juniormint
nisiprius wrote:It's not even a whole book... but I'm taking a shot at "Self-Reliance" by Ralph Waldo Emerson. See, someone in the forum complimented me on quoting Emerson and I felt like a total phony, because the sum total of all I know of Emerson is "Trust thyself: every heart vibrates to that iron string" and "A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds." I have a dim dark memory of being assigned "Self-Reliance" at some point in high school or college, but I'm not sure that I read it even then.
I love Emerson. All of his stuff but Self-Reliance in particular has the answers to all of life's questions. I've probably read it thirty times now and each time I still somehow find something 'new.'

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Posted: Thu Feb 07, 2013 10:10 pm
by abuss368
Steve Jobs.

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Posted: Fri Feb 08, 2013 1:21 am
by 6miths
John De Goey's 'The Professional Financial Advisor III: Putting Transparency and Integrity First' very, very Bogleheadish!

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Posted: Sat Feb 09, 2013 7:10 am
by randomwalk
I just finished A Fine Balance by Rohinton Mistry.

Now reading Family Matters by Rohinton Mistry.

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Posted: Sun Feb 10, 2013 3:14 pm
by chaz
"The Final Detail" by Harlan Coben.

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Posted: Sun Feb 10, 2013 3:58 pm
by nisiprius
Kinsey and Me, by Sue Grafton. Pretty good.

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Posted: Mon Feb 11, 2013 8:50 am
by randomwalk
I just finished Family Matters by Rohinton Mistry.

Now reading Learned Hand by Gerald Gunther.

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Posted: Mon Feb 11, 2013 8:57 am
by HardKnocker
Image

This is book #3 in the Posleen War series.

Very good if you like military sci-fi. Start off with book #1 "A Hymn Before Battle".

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Posted: Mon Feb 11, 2013 2:29 pm
by nisiprius
The Myth of the Rational Market: A History of Risk, Reward, and Delusion on Wall Street, by Justin Fox. Started in the middle, read a couple of chapters, then restarted at the beginning. This looks absolutely excellent, and, in a way, a sort of companion piece to a completely different book by a completely different author, What Goes Up: The Uncensored History of Modern Wall Street as Told by the Bankers, Brokers, CEOs, and Scoundrels Who Made It Happen, by Eric J. Weiner.

What's so great about these books is that they fill in all the puzzle pieces about mindset, attitude, and "what were people thinking" at various times. The Myth of the Rational Market seems to be thoroughly researched and is just replete with interesting little biographical sidelights.

Irving Fisher was a bit of publicity-seeker, and opined on all sorts of topics to the press, including grammar. When asked whether "Yes, We Have No Bananas" was correct English, Fox says he gave the straight answer that "it would be correct if the statement was preceded by the question 'Have you no bananas?'"

Of Fama, we learn that "Unlike so many of his Chicago colleagues, Fama was not driven by any obvious ideological bias in favor of free markets. His political leanings were--and remain--largely a mystery." This is interesting in itself, but also interesting because of the implication that it is unusual.

Yesterday I tossed off some remark about neither "momentum" nor "mean reversion" being new concepts, but I was unaware that as early as 1937,
Cowles and one of his number crunchers found that, over periods ranging from twenty minutes to three years, stock indexes were ore likely to keep moving in the same direction in the next period (the opposite was true of longer periods). Before anyone could get excited about these patterns, they warned that "this type of forecasting could not be employed by speculators with any assurance of consistent or large profits.

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Posted: Mon Feb 11, 2013 2:51 pm
by Blues
"A Place Of Greater Safety" by Hilary Mantel.

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Posted: Tue Feb 12, 2013 4:06 am
by kamo
KISS Guide to Home Improvement

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Posted: Tue Feb 12, 2013 4:46 am
by Bustoff
"Thinking Fast and Slow", by Daniel Kahneman

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Posted: Thu Feb 14, 2013 1:18 pm
by chaz
'Victims" by Jonathan Kellerman.

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Posted: Thu Feb 14, 2013 1:40 pm
by gkaplan
Eye of the Red Tsar by Sam Eastland. I read this several years ago when it first came out and really liked it. I just found out that Eastland has written two subsequent novels in this series, so I wanted to reacquaint myself with the Pekkala character.

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Posted: Thu Feb 14, 2013 7:35 pm
by af895
"Irrational Exuberance". I'm about a quarter of the way through and, unfortunately, not enjoying it.

I don't get "irrationally exuberant" about anything so perhaps this isn't a book for me.

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Posted: Fri Feb 15, 2013 2:29 am
by denismurf
Halfway through Bad Pharma: How Drug Companies Mislead Doctors and Harm Patients by Ben Goldacre.

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Posted: Fri Feb 15, 2013 8:53 am
by gd
The wild life of our bodies : predators, parasites, and partners that shape who we are today / Rob Dunn.
If Nassim Taleb is really as clever as he claims in Antifragile, he'd get himself some intestinal worms.

Slave Patrols-- Law and Violence in Virginia and the Carolinas, Sally E. Hadden. A surprisingly readable piece of research (the last 110 pages are the list of notes, footnotes, and references.) It seems the colonies were loaded with government-organized militias, some of which were very important to a lot of white southerners. It's a fascinating window into an almost forgotten aspect of past society.
(Edited to make blander. To be clear, this book apparently has no discussions of modern political issues other than one paragraph dismissing a connection to alleged modern police racism.)

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Posted: Fri Feb 15, 2013 12:28 pm
by tranmr
Re-reading a favorite of mine, Revenge of the Lawn: Stories 1962-1970, a collection of sixty-two short stories written by Richard Brautigan.

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Posted: Fri Feb 15, 2013 3:04 pm
by Bungo
CJOttawa wrote:"Irrational Exuberance". I'm about a quarter of the way through and, unfortunately, not enjoying it.

I don't get "irrationally exuberant" about anything so perhaps this isn't a book for me.
I felt the same way about this book. It had some good data in it, but I found it very dry and tedious to read, and took a while to finish it even though it wasn't that long.

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Posted: Fri Feb 15, 2013 8:06 pm
by norookie
:happy The Vigilant Investor, Huddleston :; A Good ( showing other scam's just replayed every generation or so, and other get rich quick schemes) , read folks!

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Posted: Sat Feb 16, 2013 8:00 am
by nisiprius
Just finished Tales of the Five Towns, by Arnold Bennett. It's only OK. But better than his novel, The Grand Babylon Hotel, which I read last week.

Almost finished Kinsey and Me, by Sue Grafton. Should have read the second part first. The first part of the book is a series of short stories involving her fictional private investigator, Kinsey Millhone. They vary from good to bad, and almost in that order. The last one, "The Lying Game," is IMHO, unforgivable. See, there are these two Puckett twins, and she is trying to find out who dunnit, and she knows that one of the twins always tells the truth and the other always lies... need I say more? Bleaccch!

The second part is a series of what I take to be intensely autobiographical stories, not told as straight autobiography in the first person however, about a young child growing up with two alcoholic parents. It is very very good, but so painful that I have to allow recovery time between reading one story and reading the next, one a day is about as much as I can take.

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Posted: Sat Feb 16, 2013 8:19 am
by jimgour
The Tipping Point

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Posted: Sat Feb 16, 2013 9:36 am
by KWu
Being fairly new to investing and having a lot of free time in the next few months, I'm currently reading The Bogleheads' Guide to Investing and I have The Millionaire Next Door , and A Random Walk Down Wall Street in the queue.

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Posted: Sat Feb 16, 2013 1:25 pm
by Dave_M
tranmr wrote:
Re-reading a favorite of mine, Revenge of the Lawn: Stories 1962-1970, a collection of sixty-two short stories written by Richard Brautigan.
I just picked up the Kindle collection of "Trout Fishing in America" and "In Watermelon Sugar". Still no Kindle version of my favorite Brautigan; "A Confederate General from Big Sur" :annoyed

Thanks for your post - its good to know others appreciate the obscure and/or oblique :happy

When I gave "Trout Fishing in America" to my son in law (who is a serious flyfisher too), he loved it, but told me that some day he was going to have to ask me some serious questions about my younger days 8-)

dave

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Posted: Sat Feb 16, 2013 2:17 pm
by gvsucavie03
My wife and mother-in-law were shopping in Target, and I went in to Office Max and picked up a copy of "Rich Dad, Poor Dad" and I read almost half the book in an hour! I just checked it out from the library... what a GREAT message Kiyosaki has in that book!

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Posted: Sun Feb 17, 2013 7:34 pm
by Fallible
Reading My Beloved World by Sonia Sotomayor, the first Hispanic appointed to the U.S. Supreme Court. She is herself the outstanding figure in the book, of course, but her mother emerges as a shining figure in her own right, poorly educated but highly intelligent and determined to give her children (the son became a doctor) the best education possible.

Earlier read The Steppe, a piece of great descriptive fiction by Anton Chekhov. It's one of the few of his masterpieces I somehow missed when I devoured them in the '70s. Another I missed, Volodya, is next.

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Posted: Sun Feb 17, 2013 8:01 pm
by Fallible
nisiprius wrote:...
Almost finished Kinsey and Me, by Sue Grafton. Should have read the second part first. The first part of the book is a series of short stories involving her fictional private investigator, Kinsey Millhone. ...The second part is a series of what I take to be intensely autobiographical stories, not told as straight autobiography in the first person however, about a young child growing up with two alcoholic parents. It is very very good, but so painful that I have to allow recovery time between reading one story and reading the next, one a day is about as much as I can take.
I think I understand your pain having just read My Beloved World by U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor. Her father, a hardworking, kind, and talented man, died of acute alcoholism when Sonia was nine and the lives of the family while he was alive were terribly hard to read about. I wanted to just skip ahead to his death, but then wouldn't have properly understood the incredible change in the family's lives after he was gone.

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Posted: Sun Feb 17, 2013 8:04 pm
by gkaplan
The Drop by Michael Connelly, the best crime novelist out there, though Chaz seems to disagree.

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Posted: Sun Feb 17, 2013 8:14 pm
by reggiesimpson
The Lunatic Express by Carl Hoffman..........................a different kind of travel experience.

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Posted: Sun Feb 17, 2013 9:36 pm
by chaz
gkaplan wrote:The Drop by Michael Connelly, the best crime novelist out there, though Chaz seems to disagree.
No, I like him very much.

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Posted: Sun Feb 17, 2013 9:37 pm
by chaz
"Paper Doll" by Robert Parker, an excellent author.

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Posted: Mon Feb 18, 2013 8:46 am
by randomwalk
I just finished Such a Long Journey by Rohinton Mistry.

Still reading Learned Hand by Gerald Gunther.

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Posted: Mon Feb 18, 2013 1:57 pm
by SurfCityBill
AZTEC - Gary Jennings

By Ben Kane
The Forgotton Legion
The Silver Eagle
The Road to Rome

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Posted: Mon Feb 18, 2013 11:30 pm
by chaz
"Lethal" by Sandra Brown.

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Posted: Tue Feb 19, 2013 12:18 am
by dewey
BenBritt wrote:Bornloser, I believe Hitchens has now seen the error of his ways and thinking.

Hmmm...Really??

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Posted: Wed Feb 20, 2013 8:52 am
by randomwalk
I just finished Learned Hand by Gerald Gunther.

Now reading The Risk Pool by Richard Russo.

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Posted: Wed Feb 20, 2013 10:03 am
by MP173
I just finished "The Lion" by Nelson DeMille.

A trip to the library harvested "Waging World Peace" by Neil Young. This is an excellent look at the life of one of the most intriguing and productive musicians of my era. This is not really an autobiography, but more a series of short chapters (conversations?) about subjects and events in his life. He discusses his life, music, musical relationships (many of his friends have died), his Lionel train experience, new projects (new form of music delivery called Puretone) and his work on energy efficiency cars.

This is an excellent look at Young.

Ed

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Posted: Wed Feb 20, 2013 5:26 pm
by ruralavalon
The Frontiersmen, by Allan W. Eckert. An interesting narrative about exploration, border warfare, and settlement in the Ohio River valley in tne period 1770s thru the War of 1812.

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Posted: Thu Feb 21, 2013 7:15 pm
by nisiprius
Just finished The Art of Racing in the Rain, by Garth Stein. Wow. Couldn't stop reading it, and through bad timing I got to the end of it while riding on the train, not that I would have indulged myself in outright crying even at home but in public I was struggling to hide even the semblance of seeping moisture at the corners of my eyes.

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Posted: Thu Feb 21, 2013 7:19 pm
by reggiesimpson
Antifragile by Taleb

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Posted: Thu Feb 21, 2013 7:44 pm
by gkaplan
nisiprius wrote:Just finished The Art of Racing in the Rain, by Garth Stein. Wow. Couldn't stop reading it, and through bad timing I got to the end of it while riding on the train, not that I would have indulged myself in outright crying even at home but in public I was struggling to hide even the semblance of seeping moisture at the corners of my eyes.
Synopsis?

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Posted: Thu Feb 21, 2013 8:22 pm
by nisiprius
gkaplan wrote:
nisiprius wrote:Just finished The Art of Racing in the Rain, by Garth Stein. Wow. Couldn't stop reading it, and through bad timing I got to the end of it while riding on the train, not that I would have indulged myself in outright crying even at home but in public I was struggling to hide even the semblance of seeping moisture at the corners of my eyes.
Synopsis?
There's enough of an issue of "spoilers" that it's hard to know how to handle it. Plus I'm almost afraid to describe it because it sounds too silly. It's told from the point of view of a dog named Enzo. The author's slant on how to handle this kind of narrative is fresh and original, and I was able to suspend disbelief. The story is a little bit of a cliffhanger/soap opera but done with enormous conviction and believability. The "racing" in the title is auto racing--the dog's master is a part-time amateur racer with ambitions to come a professional. The book opens with Enzo aware that he is at the end of his life. Enzo likes to watch television, and apart from his direct contacts within his owner's family, his knowledge of human life is entirely derived from movies and television. The most poignant line in the book for me is "I learned that from a program on the National Geographic channel, so I believe it is true."

I've been poking fun at the saccharine (and now hidden) Vanguard "my life ticker" inspirational site, but this is exactly the same kind of thing, except seasoned to my personal taste.

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Posted: Thu Feb 21, 2013 8:49 pm
by geekgyrl
I've got a double feature...

1. the intelligent investor by Benjamin Graham (I know, oh so cliche) and
2. Exile's Song by Marion Zimmer Bradley. i've just started reading.

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Posted: Thu Feb 21, 2013 9:07 pm
by jegallup
Saul Steinberg, a Biography by Deirdre Bair. Steinberg is my favorite artist, although many know him as "just" a cartoonist from the many works he published in The New Yorker. The most widely known of those was "A View of the World from Ninth Avenue"...

http://mappery.com/map-of/A-View-of-Wor ... Avenue-Map

...which has been widely copied and adapted to other purposes. Steinberg' originals are beyond my means, but I'm fortunate enough to have two signed prints. His work is beautiful, baffling, humorous and amazingly original.

Steinberg was born in Romania, studied architecture at the Politecnico Milano, and fled to the US with the help of relatives when Mussolini started moving against the Jews more vigorously. He got American citizenship, an ensign's commission in the Navy, and an assignment as a "psychological warfare artist" in China for the OSS—all in one day. (It helps to have friends in high places.)

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Posted: Fri Feb 22, 2013 12:37 am
by denismurf
Speaking of dogs as characters in stories, I just finished Sick Puppy by Carl Hiaasen. I laughed so hard my gut ached at some of the action told from the perspective of a black Lab.

Followup: I heard a book tour talk by Ben Goldacre, author of Bad Pharma. He's a wild, funny Brit deserving of attention as a comedian even if one disagrees with his contentions.

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Posted: Fri Feb 22, 2013 12:03 pm
by Fallible
jegallup wrote:Saul Steinberg, a Biography by Deirdre Bair. Steinberg is my favorite artist, although many know him as "just" a cartoonist from the many works he published in The New Yorker. The most widely known of those was "A View of the World from Ninth Avenue"...

http://mappery.com/map-of/A-View-of-Wor ... Avenue-Map

...which has been widely copied and adapted to other purposes. Steinberg' originals are beyond my means, but I'm fortunate enough to have two signed prints. His work is beautiful, baffling, humorous and amazingly original.

Steinberg was born in Romania, studied architecture at the Politecnico Milano, and fled to the US with the help of relatives when Mussolini started moving against the Jews more vigorously. He got American citizenship, an ensign's commission in the Navy, and an assignment as a "psychological warfare artist" in China for the OSS—all in one day. (It helps to have friends in high places.)
A longtime Steinberg fan here and am on a library wait list for the bio. What did you think of the book itself? As for Steinberg, I never saw a work more instantly recognizable or original than his (except for maybe Charles Addams). And he is always the subject of the great debate between cartoonists and artists or cartoonists/artists or artists/cartoonists on whether cartoons are art (in my book, they are, just not fine art).

Here's a link to more Steinberg drawings: http://www.newyorker.com/online/blogs/c ... g-man.html

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Posted: Fri Feb 22, 2013 12:34 pm
by jegallup
Fallible wrote:A longtime Steinberg fan here and am on a library wait list for the bio. What did you think of the book itself? As for Steinberg, I never saw a work more instantly recognizable or original than his (except for maybe Charles Addams). And he is always the subject of the great debate between cartoonists and artists or cartoonists/artists or artists/cartoonists on whether cartoons are art (in my book, they are, just not fine art).
The book is a serious, scholarly (100 pp of footnotes!) biography and the writing doesn't sparkle. But his life is so fascinating, with so many famous people turning up at every juncture, that it has really been very enjoyable. Steinberg was often compared to the Swiss artist Paul Klee, and could be bristly about not being taken seriously. But he did very well, as his wartime experience shows. His personal life was admirable in many ways—he never failed to help his poorer relatives when they asked for money—and less admirable in others, as you'll find out. The biographer chronicles the good and the bad without judging.

Seeing his art on a computer screen doesn't convey the full effect. This museum exhibit catalog book...

http://www.amazon.com/Saul-Steinberg-Il ... 0300115865

...has many wonderful reproductions in beautiful color on large sheets, a very thoughtful introductory essay, and some excellent descriptions of individual works. This book....

http://www.amazon.com/Steinberg-New-Yor ... new+yorker

...is also very enjoyable.

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Posted: Fri Feb 22, 2013 1:13 pm
by david99
I'm reading Anatomy of an Epidemic by Robert Whitaker. It's about the use of psychotropic drugs and how they are doing much more harm than good. He relies on medical evidence and historical documentation to build his case. As with many things it seems to be all about the money. Big Pharma and psychiatrists make a lot of money pushing these drugs. If you read other books along this theme such as Overdiagnosed, How We Do Harm or Overdosed America you'll go to the doctor's office with your eyes wide open.