What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

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What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by Alex Frakt » Mon Sep 22, 2014 11:14 am

This thread is the continuation of What Book Are You Currently Reading? multi-part megathread:

Part I
Part II
Part III
Part IV
Part V

Please remember that this thread is meant for quick (or long) reviews of books you are reading or just finished. Please keep discussions to the works in question and within the bounds of our forum policies.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by Kosmo » Mon Sep 22, 2014 12:15 pm

Citizen Soldiers by Stephen E. Ambrose.

I'd recommend this book to anyone, but sometimes it feels a little disjointed. While the stories and anecdotes from individual soldiers are the focus of the book, sometimes they didn't always align well with the larger narrative of the end of WWII in Europe, and I as the reader lost track of my place in that larger narrative.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by linenfort » Mon Sep 22, 2014 12:22 pm

The Fear Index
by
Robert Harris
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by bertilak » Mon Sep 22, 2014 12:23 pm

Currently reading The Surgeon of Crowthorne by Simon Winchester (1998).

It is the story of two men, mainly the title character (I suspect, not having read the whole thing yet). One of the men (Sir James Murray, not the title character) was the primary editor of the Oxford English Dictionary from 1879 until 1915. The other (Dr. William Minor) was a retired army Surgeon who had served in the Civil War and was a primary researcher for the defining quotations used in the OED. The odd thing is, Dr. Minor was a self-confessed and convicted murderer serving a life sentence in England's Broadmoor Lunatic Asylum! (Broadmoor is located near Crowthorne.)

So far the book is fantastic. Not only does it tell a fantastic story, the author is a born story-teller and knows how to make it interesting. For example, with respect to the Lambeth Marsh district, one of the seemest slums of London and where the confessed murder took place, Winchester says:
"The Lambeth Tragedy, the papers eventually settled upon calling it -- as if the simple existence of Lambeth itself was not tragedy enough ... was a most unusual event even by the diminishing standards of the Marsh dwellers."

UPDATE:
Corrected to say that Minor was the murderer. I should also add that "convicted" is probably not the right word. He was determined by the court to have committed the murder but was found innocent by reason of insanity and remanded to an institution where, for the safety of the public, he would be detained "until Her Majesty's Pleasure be known."
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by HardKnocker » Mon Sep 22, 2014 1:10 pm

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by placeholder » Mon Sep 22, 2014 2:26 pm

I started The Apocalypse Codex by Charles Stross from the series of "Laundry" books that are parts workplace comedy/thriller pastiche/Lovecraftian horror (I'm out of order because when I read The Rhesus Chart I realized I'd missed one but it didn't really spoilerize this one).

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by nisiprius » Mon Sep 22, 2014 2:53 pm

Forgot to mention that I'm also reading slowly through Frenzied Fiction, one sketch at a time, by the brilliant Canadian humorist, Stephen Leacock, 1869-1944.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by cfs » Mon Sep 22, 2014 3:15 pm

Reading at the library.

I drop by my local library on a daily basis, less than 2 miles from my home, currently re-reading about pre-Columbian America and conquistadores, a lot of books including [re-reading] the classic from Doctor Jared Diamond (Guns, Germs, and Steel: The Fates of Human Societies). I have not checked out a book in a couple of years, I just drop by and read on the reference section and stay there for a couple of hours. For some reason I just feel at peace with myself at the library.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by ruralavalon » Mon Sep 22, 2014 3:51 pm

The Year of Decision 1846, by Bernard DeVoto. Compelling narrative of events of 1846. A lot happened that year -- the Mormons leave Illinois for The Great Basin, thousands of immigrants go overland by wagon train to Oregon and California, Zachary Taylor moves south to the Rio Grande and the Mexican War begins, Henry David Thoreau invents civil disobedience, Stephen W. Kearny takes the Santa Fe trail to conquer New Mexico then on to California, Winnfield Scott lands at Vera Cruz and goes on to the Halls of Montezuma, John C. Fremont wanders around in California and Oregon trying to do something, the Bear Flag Rebellion in California, the Donner party starves in the Sierra Nevada, Francis Parkman travels the Great Plains, and much more.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by Fallible » Mon Sep 22, 2014 4:07 pm

cfs wrote:Reading at the library.

I drop by my local library on a daily basis, less than 2 miles from my home, currently re-reading about pre-Columbian America and conquistadores, a lot of books including [re-reading] the classic from Doctor Jared Diamond (Guns, Germs, and Steel: The Fates of Human Societies). I have not checked out a book in a couple of years, I just drop by and read on the reference section and stay there for a couple of hours. For some reason I just feel at peace with myself at the library.


You might be interested in this from Ron Lieber in NYT. I'm also a library fan and enjoy just being there for reading, working, and meetings, which often include our local BH chapter.
http://www.nytimes.com/2014/08/30/your- ... .html?_r=0
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by cfs » Mon Sep 22, 2014 4:33 pm

Fallible wrote:
cfs wrote:Reading at the library.

I drop by my local library on a daily basis, less than 2 miles from my home, currently re-reading about pre-Columbian America and conquistadores, a lot of books including [re-reading] the classic from Doctor Jared Diamond (Guns, Germs, and Steel: The Fates of Human Societies). I have not checked out a book in a couple of years, I just drop by and read on the reference section and stay there for a couple of hours. For some reason I just feel at peace with myself at the library.


You might be interested in this from Ron Lieber in NYT. I'm also a library fan and enjoy just being there for reading, working, and meetings, which often include our local BH chapter.
http://www.nytimes.com/2014/08/30/your- ... .html?_r=0

Thanks you for the link to the good article by Ron Lieber. Closing, heading to my local library now. Thank you.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by Bungo » Mon Sep 22, 2014 5:11 pm

Just finished Night Soldiers by Alan Furst. Very good spy novel about a young Bulgarian recruited by the Russian NKVD to gather intelligence in Spain during the civil war. Inevitably, the Russians turn on him and he spends the next ten years hiding out from them while aiding the French resistance (and the American OSS) during the Nazi occupation of France. There's no James Bond glamour or heroics here; indeed, any high-profile action against the Germans brings thousandfold retaliation as they will happily wipe an entire village off the map in revenge for an assassination. Instead, the protagonist and his allies limit their actions to low-grade but strategic efforts to slow down German war production, such as a well-placed bomb to knock a few railroad engines out of commission for a few months. It's not an action-packed page turner by any means; rather a gritty, slow-paced, and highly detailed blend of narrative and history, with a great sense of local atmosphere in the various settings: Russia, Spain, France, various towns and barges along the Danube. The writing is well above average although a bit detached at times. I'll certainly be reading more of Furst's books.

Next in the queue is Patrick O'Brian's Master and Commander.

Current background reading: reading Barbara Tuchman's The Guns of August, covering the first month of the first World War. I'm about 100 pages in so far; it's very good.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by SimpleGift » Mon Sep 22, 2014 7:32 pm

For those who love adventure travel writing, I recently discovered a large collection of books by Dervla Murphy. What an amazing woman! Not only is she a gifted writer, plus a fearless traveler with a good sense of humor, but she researches in depth the history and geography of the countries that she travels through. On a recent vacation, I read her Travels with a Mule in Unknown Peru (2003) and plan to slowly work my way through her canon. One book down and 24 to go!

Wikipedia wrote:Dervla Murphy (born 28 November 1931, Ireland) is an Irish touring cyclist and author of adventure travel books for over 40 years.

Murphy is best known for her 1965 book, Full Tilt: Ireland to India With a Bicycle, about an overland cycling trip through Europe, Iran, Afghanistan, Pakistan and India. She followed this by volunteering with Tibetan refugees in India and Nepal, and trekking with a mule through Ethiopia. Murphy took a break from travel writing following the birth of her daughter, and then wrote about her travels with Rachel in India, Pakistan, South America, Madagascar and Cameroon. She later wrote about her solo trips through Romania, Africa, Laos, the states of the former Yugoslavia, and Siberia. In 2005 she visited Cuba with her daughter and three granddaughters.

Murphy has normally traveled alone and unaided, without luxuries and depending on the hospitality of local people. She has been in dangerous situations; for example, she was attacked by wolves in the former Yugoslavia, threatened by soldiers in Ethiopia, and robbed in Siberia. However, she described her worst incident as tripping over cats at home and shattering her left arm.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by Austintatious » Mon Sep 22, 2014 7:59 pm

Bungo wrote:Just finished Night Soldiers by Alan Furst. Very good spy novel about a young Bulgarian recruited by the Russian NKVD to gather intelligence in Spain during the civil war. Inevitably, the Russians turn on him and he spends the next ten years hiding out from them while aiding the French resistance (and the American OSS) during the Nazi occupation of France. There's no James Bond glamour or heroics here; indeed, any high-profile action against the Germans brings thousandfold retaliation as they will happily wipe an entire village off the map in revenge for an assassination. Instead, the protagonist and his allies limit their actions to low-grade but strategic efforts to slow down German war production, such as a well-placed bomb to knock a few railroad engines out of commission for a few months. It's not an action-packed page turner by any means; rather a gritty, slow-paced, and highly detailed blend of narrative and history, with a great sense of local atmosphere in the various settings: Russia, Spain, France, various towns and barges along the Danube. The writing is well above average although a bit detached at times. I'll certainly be reading more of Furst's books.

Next in the queue is Patrick O'Brian's Master and Commander.

Current background reading: reading Barbara Tuchman's The Guns of August, covering the first month of the first World War. I'm about 100 pages in so far; it's very good.


Night Soldiers was the first of his many European spy novels, I think. I thoroughly enjoyed reading them all, which I suggest you do in order of publication, if possible. Here's a list of his works.

http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/49941.Alan_Furst

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by CoAndy » Mon Sep 22, 2014 8:06 pm

Currently reading "Things that Matter" by Charles Krauthammer. It is a collection of his work over the last two decades or so and covers a wide range of issues.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by LadyGeek » Mon Sep 22, 2014 8:17 pm

Rite of Passage, by Alexei Panshin. A teenage girl coming of age story.

This story won a Nebula award in 1968, was nominated for a Hugo award in 1969. I tend to agree, it's a good read.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by black jack » Mon Sep 22, 2014 9:16 pm

Just finished "Island of the Lost: Shipwrecked at the Edge of the World," by Joan Druett. An amazing story about two ships that wrecked on Auckland Island, a truly miserable-sounding place 285 miles south of New Zealand - featuring gale-driven rainstorms lasting days on end, biting insects, little food (both crews survived mostly on seals which came to the island for breeding at certain times of the year), freezing temperatures, etc. - within months of each other in 1864. One ship, with a crew of five, wrecked in the south of the island in the summer; the other, with a crew of 25, wrecked at the north of the island a few months later. The crews were unaware of each others' existence.

The crew of five worked together, were able to salvage materials from their ship over time, and with the aid of a remarkable Frenchman - Francois Raynal - who knew something of engineering, survived for two years and ultimately were able to build up the rowboat from their ship and sail it to New Zealand, having given up on being rescued. Raynal is ridiculously resourceful - he made me think of the Professor from "Gilligans's Island": he figures out how to make cement from the materials at hand, enabling them to build a huge fireplace; he constructs a bellows and a forge with which to make the tools (from the iron ballast in the ship) to cut and shape the wood to build up the rowboat, etc.

By contrast, the other ship ran aground a little offshore and sank in midwinter. Six of the crew didn't even make it to shore, and of the 19 who did, 16 died of exposure or starvation within weeks. The three remaining - the captain, the second mate, and an ordinary seaman - got along poorly, and survived primarily by the wit and initiative of the seaman until they were rescued by a passing ship a year or so later.

The book is based on accounts written by, and reports in newspapers at the time from, the survivors. Raynal's account, originally published in 1870, has been continuously in print ever since, according to Druett: http://www.amazon.fr/naufrag%C3%A9s-Auckland-Fran%C3%A7ois-%C3%89douard-Raynal/dp/2710368161
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by Bungo » Mon Sep 22, 2014 11:40 pm

Austintatious wrote:Night Soldiers was the first of his many European spy novels, I think. I thoroughly enjoyed reading them all, which I suggest you do in order of publication, if possible. Here's a list of his works.

http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/49941.Alan_Furst

Thanks, I have The Polish Officer (the third book) which I found a while ago at a used bookshop, but I'm missing the second book, Dark Star. I'll be sure to get that one to read next.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by DaftInvestor » Tue Sep 23, 2014 7:54 am

The Bully Pulpit: Theodore Roosevelt, William Howard Taft, and the Golden Age of Journalism : Goodwin, Doris Kearns

Someone gave it to me for Christmas - I started reading it just before the Roosevelt series on PBS started. It turns out to be a nice compliment to that series (The PBS Series focuses on Teddy, Franklin, and Eleanor while this book focuses on Teddy Roosevelt,Taft and the journalists they used to help publicize their agendas). Good read so far (50% in....).

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by drawpoker » Tue Sep 23, 2014 9:15 am

Just finished "The Brothers: John Foster Dulles, Allen Dulles and Their Secret World War" - very, very well-written, some of the content is amazing. Highly recommend.

Also, "The Arsenal of Democracy: FDR, Detroit and An Epic Quest to Arm an America at War" This one plods along in many places, really needed a quicker pace than it presents. Still, for anyone who grew up in Detroit it is a must-read, esp. if you want to know the real truth behind the Henry Ford myth and Ford Motor Co. history. Fascinating stuff here.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by Valuethinker » Tue Sep 23, 2014 9:40 am

Kosmo wrote:Citizen Soldiers by Stephen E. Ambrose.

I'd recommend this book to anyone, but sometimes it feels a little disjointed. While the stories and anecdotes from individual soldiers are the focus of the book, sometimes they didn't always align well with the larger narrative of the end of WWII in Europe, and I as the reader lost track of my place in that larger narrative.


You might prefer Rick Atkinson's 3 volume series on the US Army in WW2?

http://www.amazon.com/The-Guns-Last-Lig ... 0805062904

That has more the flavour of conventional narrative military history.

Paul Fussell wrote an almost opposite tack-- very personal (and difficult) tales of the horrors endured by American troops in fighting that war.


http://www.amazon.com/Boys-Crusade-Nort ... 515&sr=1-5

http://www.amazon.com/Doing-Battle-Skep ... 15&sr=1-10

is his own narrative on that experience, which was pretty harrowing.

http://www.uio.no/studier/emner/hf/iakh ... 20bomb.pdf

This essay about the use of the A Bomb, from the perspective of a man who had fought in Europe and was waiting to be shipped to invade Japan, is one of my favourites. It also reminds one of why it is, despite limited on paper accomplishments, people call President Truman 'great'.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by Valuethinker » Tue Sep 23, 2014 9:45 am

LadyGeek wrote:Rite of Passage, by Alexei Panshin. A teenage girl coming of age story.

This story won a Nebula award in 1968, was nominated for a Hugo award in 1969. I tend to agree, it's a good read.


I think you can get Michael Kurland's Princes of Earth online. A series that never went anywhere, alas. It's the best 'Heinlein not written by Heinlein' that I know of, other than Panshin. (and Light Raid, below).


Two other SF Novels which are about young people caught up in big events are:

http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/2684 ... Weightless by John M Ford (his fantasy novel The Dragon Waiting is still one of my all time favourites).

http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/2097 ... earch=true by Connie M Willis

Light Raid is a personal favourite, partly because it is set on Vancouver Island (in part).

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by Valuethinker » Tue Sep 23, 2014 9:49 am

Bungo wrote:
Austintatious wrote:Night Soldiers was the first of his many European spy novels, I think. I thoroughly enjoyed reading them all, which I suggest you do in order of publication, if possible. Here's a list of his works.

http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/49941.Alan_Furst

Thanks, I have The Polish Officer (the third book) which I found a while ago at a used bookshop, but I'm missing the second book, Dark Star. I'll be sure to get that one to read next.


It's good advice to read them in order, events and characters from the earlier ones (and particularly Heninger's Brasserie, in Paris) pop up again and again.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by Valuethinker » Tue Sep 23, 2014 9:54 am

placeholder wrote:I started The Apocalypse Codex by Charles Stross from the series of "Laundry" books that are parts workplace comedy/thriller pastiche/Lovecraftian horror (I'm out of order because when I read The Rhesus Chart I realized I'd missed one but it didn't really spoilerize this one).


Yes they are hard to describe they can switch from wry humour to graphic horror in a paragraph.

Stross has said he bases each one on a different thriller writer

The first Len Deighton
The second Ian Fleming (makes express connection to Fleming)
the third is Antony Price (British thriller writer who always made references to military history in his books)
fourth is Modesty Blaise (that's the name of the character which was a well known comic strip and series of novels, I cannot remember who wrote her). In some ways I thought the 4th was the creepiest
there:
http://www.fantasticfiction.co.uk/o/pet ... blaise.htm Peter O'Donnell

Case Nightmare Green always looms -- Stross seems to be taking the series in that direction. Someone has even written a Role Playing Game around the Laundry.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by FabLab » Tue Sep 23, 2014 9:57 am

bertilak wrote:Currently reading The Surgeon of Crowthorne by Simon Winchester (1998).

It is the story of two men, mainly the title character (I suspect, not having read the whole thing yet). One of the men (Sir James Murray, not the title character) was the primary editor of the Oxford English Dictionary from 1879 until 1915. The other (Dr. William Minor) was a retired army Surgeon who had served in the Civil War and was a primary researcher for the defining quotations used in the OED. The odd thing is, Dr. Murray was a self-confessed and convicted murderer serving a life sentence in England's Broadmoor Lunatic Asylum! (Broadmoor is located near Crowthorne.)


AKA The Professor and the Madman per its American publication. BTW, Dr. Minor, rather than "Dr. Murray," was the convicted murderer. After reading this Winchester work, I followed it up with The Meaning of Everything: the Story of the Oxford English Dictionary and totally loved it.

Cheers.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by Valuethinker » Tue Sep 23, 2014 10:05 am

black jack wrote:Just finished "Island of the Lost: Shipwrecked at the Edge of the World," by Joan Druett. An amazing story about two ships that wrecked on Auckland Island, a truly miserable-sounding place 285 miles south of New Zealand - featuring gale-driven rainstorms lasting days on end, biting insects, little food (both crews survived mostly on seals which came to the island for breeding at certain times of the year), freezing temperatures, etc. - within months of each other in 1864. One ship, with a crew of five, wrecked in the south of the island in the summer; the other, with a crew of 25, wrecked at the north of the island a few months later. The crews were unaware of each others' existence.

The crew of five worked together, were able to salvage materials from their ship over time, and with the aid of a remarkable Frenchman - Francois Raynal - who knew something of engineering, survived for two years and ultimately were able to build up the rowboat from their ship and sail it to New Zealand, having given up on being rescued. Raynal is ridiculously resourceful - he made me think of the Professor from "Gilligans's Island": he figures out how to make cement from the materials at hand, enabling them to build a huge fireplace; he constructs a bellows and a forge with which to make the tools (from the iron ballast in the ship) to cut and shape the wood to build up the rowboat, etc.

By contrast, the other ship ran aground a little offshore and sank in midwinter. Six of the crew didn't even make it to shore, and of the 19 who did, 16 died of exposure or starvation within weeks. The three remaining - the captain, the second mate, and an ordinary seaman - got along poorly, and survived primarily by the wit and initiative of the seaman until they were rescued by a passing ship a year or so later.

The book is based on accounts written by, and reports in newspapers at the time from, the survivors. Raynal's account, originally published in 1870, has been continuously in print ever since, according to Druett: http://www.amazon.fr/naufrag%C3%A9s-Auckland-Fran%C3%A7ois-%C3%89douard-Raynal/dp/2710368161



This reminds me of the founder of the Outward Bound school of wilderness adventure training-- Kurt Hahn, an Austrian refugee. During WW2 merchant ships were being torpedoed, and the sailors were dying before being rescued. It was discovered that the older seamen were surviving, not the younger. Coming from the days of sail, even, they had greater survival skills.

Outward Bound was founded to teach young merchantship crew the survival skills necessary. That was the origin of its original mandate.

http://www.outwardbound.org/about-outwa ... d/history/

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by bertilak » Tue Sep 23, 2014 10:42 am

FabLab wrote:
bertilak wrote:Currently reading The Surgeon of Crowthorne by Simon Winchester (1998).

It is the story of two men, mainly the title character (I suspect, not having read the whole thing yet). One of the men (Sir James Murray, not the title character) was the primary editor of the Oxford English Dictionary from 1879 until 1915. The other (Dr. William Minor) was a retired army Surgeon who had served in the Civil War and was a primary researcher for the defining quotations used in the OED. The odd thing is, Dr. Murray was a self-confessed and convicted murderer serving a life sentence in England's Broadmoor Lunatic Asylum! (Broadmoor is located near Crowthorne.)


AKA The Professor and the Madman per its American publication. BTW, Dr. Minor, rather than "Dr. Murray," was the convicted murderer. After reading this Winchester work, I followed it up with The Meaning of Everything: the Story of the Oxford English Dictionary and totally loved it.

Cheers.

Thanks. I fixed my post for the Murray/Minor mistake. I also added the following text:
..."convicted" is probably not the right word. He was determined by the court to have committed the murder but was found innocent by reason of insanity and remanded to an institution where, for the safety of the public, he would be detained "until Her Majesty's Pleasure be known."


I feel like I ought to get a copy of the OED (Compact Edition, anyway). I've been wanting a set of those big blue books that come with a magnifying glass for years now. As in the past I will probably not spring for it.

I also feel I should get a copy of Johnson's Dictionary.

Winchester has quite a few other books and I plan on following up with one or more of them.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by Fallible » Tue Sep 23, 2014 12:09 pm

cfs wrote:
Fallible wrote:
cfs wrote:Reading at the library.

I drop by my local library on a daily basis, less than 2 miles from my home, currently re-reading about pre-Columbian America and conquistadores, a lot of books including [re-reading] the classic from Doctor Jared Diamond (Guns, Germs, and Steel: The Fates of Human Societies). I have not checked out a book in a couple of years, I just drop by and read on the reference section and stay there for a couple of hours. For some reason I just feel at peace with myself at the library.


You might be interested in this from Ron Lieber in NYT. I'm also a library fan and enjoy just being there for reading, working, and meetings, which often include our local BH chapter.
http://www.nytimes.com/2014/08/30/your- ... .html?_r=0

Thanks you for the link to the good article by Ron Lieber. Closing, heading to my local library now. Thank you.


And thank you for your thanks. :happy
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by vbdoug » Tue Sep 23, 2014 3:17 pm

Of Rats and Men by John L Smith.

An excellent biography about mob lawyer and former Las Vegas Mayor Oscar Goodman.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by chaz » Tue Sep 23, 2014 3:21 pm

"The Grave Tattoo" by Val McDermid.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by jebmke » Tue Sep 23, 2014 3:34 pm

Field of Prey by John Sandford. Typical Lucas Davenport tale.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by TarTar » Tue Sep 23, 2014 4:19 pm

"Moral Tribes: Emotion, Reason, and the Gap Between Us and Them" by Joshua Greene (Oct 31, 2013)

and

"The History of Rock 'n' Roll in Ten Songs" by Greil Marcus (Sep 2, 2014)

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

Post by Tbailey » Wed Sep 24, 2014 10:39 am

Difficult Conversations: How to Discuss What Matters Most - Stone, Patton, Heen

Prey - Michael Crichton

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by 69chevy » Wed Sep 24, 2014 10:56 am

Just started reading Who Moved My Cheese and when I finish it I also picked up Good to Great.

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

Post by black jack » Wed Sep 24, 2014 8:44 pm

Tbailey wrote:Difficult Conversations: How to Discuss What Matters Most - Stone, Patton, Heen


That book has excellent reviews; it's now on my list to read. Thanks.
We cannot absolutely prove [that they are wrong who say] that we have seen our best days. But so said all who came before us, and with just as much apparent reason. | -T. B. Macaulay (1800-1859)

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by Blues » Fri Sep 26, 2014 7:17 am

"The Kill Artist" by Daniel Silva.
“Tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat.” - Sun Tzu | "Everybody has a plan until they get punched in the mouth." - Mike Tyson

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runner26
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by runner26 » Fri Sep 26, 2014 9:39 pm

Biocentrism: How Life and Consciousness are the Keys to Understanding the True Nature of the Universe Paperback – May 18, 2010 by Robert Lanza

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by LadyGeek » Fri Sep 26, 2014 9:54 pm

The Hub: Dangerous Territory, by James H. Schmitz. I just started and can't put it down.

Valuethinker, placeholder, and Ged - thanks for the recommendation. I'm thinking to complete the "Federation of the Hub" series, which has strong female characters (Telzey Amberdon, Trigger Argee): Telzey Amberdon, T.N.T:Telzey and Trigger, Trigger and Friends.

T.N.T:Telzey and Trigger is only available in paperback at Amazon.com. Baen Ebooks has it in ePub / Kindle / Nook format, same price as amazon.com.

The last time I ordered paperbacks, a reseller lost one in shipment. I was refunded, but it took a few weeks to resolve.
To some, the glass is half full. To others, the glass is half empty. To an engineer, it's twice the size it needs to be.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by placeholder » Sat Sep 27, 2014 10:29 am

LadyGeek wrote:The Hub: Dangerous Territory, by James H. Schmitz. I just started and can't put it down.

It's a shame that Schmitz isn't better known as he ought to be up there with the biggies of the era.

LadyGeek wrote:I'm thinking to complete the "Federation of the Hub" series, which has strong female characters (Telzey Amberdon, Trigger Argee): Telzey Amberdon, T.N.T:Telzey and Trigger, Trigger and Friends.

Also Dr. Nile Etland who appears near the end of the collection in the story Trouble Tide and the short novel The Demon Breed (supposedly Schmitz had a reader complain that there was no reason for her to be female in the latter).

LadyGeek wrote:T.N.T:Telzey and Trigger is only available in paperback at Amazon.com. Baen Ebooks has it in ePub / Kindle / Nook format, same price as amazon.com.

I'm pretty sure The Witches of Karres was mentioned in the previous incarnation of the thread and while it isn't a "Hub" book it again has some good female characters.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by LadyGeek » Sat Sep 27, 2014 11:00 am

It was mentioned. Subject: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

placeholder wrote:
LadyGeek wrote:The Witches of Karres, by James H. Schmitz.

There are a number of very good Schmitz works (I particularly enjoyed The Demon Breed which is included in the collection The Hub: Dangerous Territory) and it should be noted that there were some follow up books to the one you just finished but were written years later by other authors and for which the reception on rec.arts.sf.written was mixed.
To some, the glass is half full. To others, the glass is half empty. To an engineer, it's twice the size it needs to be.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by htdrag11 » Sat Sep 27, 2014 11:21 am

The Art of Effortless Living by Ingrid Bacci; it's good for the body and soul.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by chaz » Sat Sep 27, 2014 11:29 am

Blues wrote:"The Kill Artist" by Daniel Silva.

A very good author.
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seeshells
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by seeshells » Sat Sep 27, 2014 6:37 pm

"Confessions of a Economic Hit Man", by John Perkins, As well as "The Trillion Dollar Conspiracy": The New World Order", by Jim Mars.
Last edited by seeshells on Thu Oct 09, 2014 8:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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steve roy
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by steve roy » Sat Sep 27, 2014 8:22 pm

"The Entertainer -- Movies, Magic and My Father's Twentieth Century" -- Margaret Talbot

Lyle Talbot's youngest daughter has written a book about him. (You DO know who Lyle Talbot is, don't you? He was an actor who had a loooong career, who spent a decade as Ozzie Nelson's next door neighbor on "The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet", booming out "HI OZ!" as he entered the Nelson living room, and fifty years performing in plays, motion pictures and kajillions of television shows. He was a touring stage actor in the twenties, almost a movie star in the thirties, and a has-been in the forties. And then he was a dependable character actor on television from the 1950s to the 1980s. Mr. Talbot never, apparently, turned down an acting job, which explains why he appeared in three Ed Wood movies).

But the book is more than the life of Lyle Talbot. It's about entertainment through most of the last century, about actors who made livings but didn't become household names. And it's about professionalism and recovering from alcoholism and mid-century, middle class families. All in all an interesting read.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by jginseattle » Sat Sep 27, 2014 8:52 pm

Kovacsland. A Biography Of Ernie Kovacs, by Diana Rico.

It's well researched, entertaining and informative. Recommended.

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

Post by HomerJ » Sat Sep 27, 2014 8:58 pm

Lucky Planet

Very interesting book that explores the question, "Are Earth type planets common in the universe or extremely rare"?

His main point is that our Earth-Moon combo may be very rare in the universe.. I mean the moon is very big, we're almost a double-planet system...

(Funny enough Isaac Asimov had the same thought 30 years ago in his 5th Foundation book)

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by d0gerz » Sun Sep 28, 2014 7:56 pm

Just finished reading Kafka On The Shore by Haruki Murakami. The first novel of his that I've read. Many questions left unanswered in my head. I get the feeling I will have to read it again, and again. I enjoyed it a lot for all the references, to literature, philosophy, music, places to go see, etc.

Next up is Norwegian Wood by the same author.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by dowse » Mon Sep 29, 2014 3:11 pm

Just finished "Think Like a Freak", the 3rd in the Freakonomics series by Steven Dubner and Steven Levitt. I'm a big fan of their first two books and of their blog and podcasts, but this book was somewhat of a letdown.

Currently reading "The Signal and the Noise: Why So Many Predictions Fail — but Some Don't " by Nate Silver. Best suited for the analytically inclined such as myself. Nate Silver also runs a blog called fivethirtyeight with a number of interesting articles on a variety of topics. Currently, I enjoy tracking his articles on forecasting the results of the upcoming election.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by chaz » Fri Oct 03, 2014 2:58 pm

"Echo Burning" by Lee Child.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by Bacchus01 » Fri Oct 03, 2014 4:00 pm

Just finished Gone Girl. Got caught up in the hype and read it on a plane trip. Not bad, but predictable.

I may have to catch up on some more Zombie/Apocalypse fiction. Anyone have an recommendations here?

I've read World War Z, Autumn series, Day by Day series, Apocalypse Z series (first book was great), Walking Dead series, Patient Zero (just okay).

Any that I just must read?

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