What are you reading lately?

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Mikedunford
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Re: What are you reading lately?

#776

Post by Mikedunford » Tue Apr 25, 2017 5:10 pm

Sterngard Friegen wrote:The Collapsing Empire by John Scalzi.

I wrote to one of our other Fogbowzer SciFi fans today in a PM and said this:
Just finished it.

It's not about climate, climate deniers, and big business; or is it? Well, it is about the last. And also about the importance of peer review in the scientific community.

It's well worth pushing to the top of your list.

Also filled with a lot of Scalzi humor with some echoes of Heinlein.

It will be a Hugo nominee -- assuming the new nomination system works.

I'm looking forward to a sequel.
I pretty much have liked everything Scalzi has written, except Redshirts -- ugh. And anybody who sticks it to the abominable "Vox Day" is a hero in my book.
I enjoyed Collapsing Empire. And my copy has "Book 1" on the spine, so I'd guess that you've got reasonable hope for a sequel.

I found Redshirts to be a tremendously rewarding read, but that was almost entirely because it helped me get a better grip on some concepts related to my current major legal research project. As a book, I wouldn't give it an "ugh," but I definitely wouldn't give it more than a "meh." The incorporation of the author into the story felt a little Mary Jane-y, and the use of "Coda" and "Coda II" for the later sections felt like an awkward and unnecessary shour-out to Heinlein's Time Enough for Love (which I really have to get around to re-reading one of these days).

I've been reading my way through some of the more recent books in the 1632 series, but (for various reasons) it's starting to feel more like work, so I'm looking to shift once I get through my current read (1635: The Papal Stakes).

I'm open to suggestions if anyone has any. Or I could just go browse at Forbidden Planet on my lunch break.


I believe that each era finds a improvement in law each year brings something new for the benefit of mankind.

--Clarence Earl Gideon

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Foggy
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Re: What are you reading lately?

#777

Post by Foggy » Tue Apr 25, 2017 5:29 pm

Mikedunford wrote:I'm open to suggestions if anyone has any.
I ordered one today that will be next on my reading list, The Genius of Birds by Jennifer Ackerman. Heard her on NPR today talking about it.

Reminder to self: Do not use the phrase "bird brain" anymore. Birds are smartypantsers.


If dogs run free, why not we?

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maydijo
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Re: What are you reading lately?

#778

Post by maydijo » Tue Apr 25, 2017 5:41 pm

I read (and loved) Do Not Say We Have Nothing, by Madeline Thien, on holidays. It is a beautiful novel that covers much of Chinese history in the 29th century.



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Chilidog
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Re: What are you reading lately?

#779

Post by Chilidog » Tue Apr 25, 2017 6:33 pm

Foggy wrote:
Mikedunford wrote:I'm open to suggestions if anyone has any.
I ordered one today that will be next on my reading list, The Genius of Birds by Jennifer Ackerman. Heard her on NPR today talking about it.

Reminder to self: Do not use the phrase "bird brain" anymore. Birds are smartypantsers.

They are also licentious little bastards



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TollandRCR
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Re: What are you reading lately?

#780

Post by TollandRCR » Mon May 08, 2017 11:46 am

maydijo wrote:I read (and loved) Do Not Say We Have Nothing, by Madeline Thien, on holidays. It is a beautiful novel that covers much of Chinese history in the 29th century.
20th century? Or are they already that far ahead?

I tell my intro sociology classes that until the discovery of the silver mountains of South America and the subsequent establishment of Manila as the great trading port, Europe was just a stub on the great Eurasian continent. The wealth of that world was in Asia. They choose not to believe me.

I am now reading The Last Librarian: An AOI Thriller (The Justar Journal Book 1) by Brandt Legg. I won't say much about it except to ask "Where do you think the last public library on Earth was?" at the end of the century in which humanity was almost wiped out by a plague. (Hint: it's in the same city as the last bookstore on Earth.) It turns out that libraries are major threats to totalitarian regimes, even those that are supposedly benign.


“The truth is, we know so little about life, we don’t really know what the good news is and what the bad news is.” Kurt Vonnegut

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maydijo
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Re: What are you reading lately?

#781

Post by maydijo » Mon May 08, 2017 5:14 pm

TollandRCR wrote:
maydijo wrote:I read (and loved) Do Not Say We Have Nothing, by Madeline Thien, on holidays. It is a beautiful novel that covers much of Chinese history in the 29th century.
20th century? Or are they already that far ahead?

I tell my intro sociology classes that until the discovery of the silver mountains of South America and the subsequent establishment of Manila as the great trading port, Europe was just a stub on the great Eurasian continent. The wealth of that world was in Asia. They choose not to believe me.

I am now reading The Last Librarian: An AOI Thriller (The Justar Journal Book 1) by Brandt Legg. I won't say much about it except to ask "Where do you think the last public library on Earth was?" at the end of the century in which humanity was almost wiped out by a plague. (Hint: it's in the same city as the last bookstore on Earth.) It turns out that libraries are major threats to totalitarian regimes, even those that are supposedly benign.
Whoops. I need to be more careful with my typing! 20th century - from the war between the Communists and the Nationalists until 2016

My mom was a librarian. I always knew it was a cover for more nefarious activities.



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Maybenaut
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Re: What are you reading lately?

#782

Post by Maybenaut » Thu May 18, 2017 4:00 pm

Reading (or, rather listening to the audiobook) The Handmaid's Tale. Narrated by Claire Danes. Very, very good (I'm about two hours in of 12 so far). There was discussion of the TV series on the whatchya watchin' thread, and I decided to listen to the book before I watched the TV series. Oh my god it is so fucking scary right now. "Timely" doesn't begin to cover it.



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Re: What are you reading lately?

#783

Post by Clairez » Fri May 19, 2017 2:37 pm

I am almost done reading Sapiens: A brief history of Humankind by Yuval Noah Harari.

His book is very thought provoking. I had taken his history course on Coursera and was so enchanted by his ideas and speaking style that I just had to read his book.



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WriteItDown
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Re: What are you reading lately?

#784

Post by WriteItDown » Sat May 27, 2017 11:28 am

I just read The Boys in the Boat. It was excellent. It was about the U.S. Olympic rowing team in Hitler's olympics.



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Addie
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Re: What are you reading lately?

#785

Post by Addie » Thu Jun 01, 2017 8:53 pm

I'm reading a perfectly lovely, small novel about Mexican migration.

From a Guardian review:
Signs Preceding the End of the World by Yuri Herrera review – a lyrical Mexican migrants’ tale

From its opening pages, when gaping asphalt swallows a man, a car, a dog and “even the screams of passersby”, this marvellously rich, slim novel is working on many levels. The lethal sinkhole is located in a generic silver-mining town in Mexico, “riddled with bullet holes and tunnels bored from five centuries of voracious silver lust”. But the violent underworld it reveals is both mythological and dirty-real, a place of wandering souls and taciturn gangsters.

Navigating this perilous terrain is Makina, a “smart and schooled” young woman who survives the sinkhole as she does every pitfall in the book, thinking of herself as “the door not the one who walks through it”. As she notes laconically: “These things always happen to someone else until they happen to you.” Sent by her mother to bring back her more gullible brother from across the US border, where he has been lured by the false hope of land from a long-absent father, she journeys from “Village” to “Little Town” to “the Big Chilango” – Mexico City – and thence by bus to the Rio Grande, crossing the roiling green river in an inner tube and running the desert gauntlet of people-smugglers, vigilantes and border patrols. ...

Although this compelling heroine travels light, intent on “coming right back” for her younger sister, the US has a siren call. She is drawn to the “intermediary tongue” of her compatriots living in the north, which inhabits “a nebulous territory between what is dying out and what is not yet born”. Yet Herrera’s metaphors grasp the freedom, and the alarming disorientation, of transition and translation. Faced with shedding her name, home and tongue, Makina whispers to herself, “I’ve been skinned.”

Makina carries a “latin-anglo” dictionary that frustrates her, being written “by old men and for old men, outdated the second they left the press”. Translator Lisa Dillman has found a language both blunt and lyrical for Herrera’s many neologisms, notably jarchas, a verb he created from a Mozarabic noun meaning both “exit” and (in Arab Andalusian verse) “end couplet”. Rendered as “to verse”, meaning to leave, this word, like the novel itself, “creates its own strange poetry.


¡Qué vergüenza!

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Fortinbras
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Re: What are you reading lately?

#786

Post by Fortinbras » Thu Jun 01, 2017 9:05 pm

I am reading the Memoirs of Ulysses S. Grant. One of the greatest of American heroes, yet his memoirs are suitably modest, he always remembers to inform his readers of the subsequent promotions (even in the Confederate Army) and heroism of the people he meets. It is a pity he did not live long enough to write memoirs of his post-war life.



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Re: What are you reading lately?

#787

Post by JohnPCapitalist » Fri Jun 02, 2017 10:09 am

Fortinbras wrote:I am reading the Memoirs of Ulysses S. Grant. One of the greatest of American heroes, yet his memoirs are suitably modest, he always remembers to inform his readers of the subsequent promotions (even in the Confederate Army) and heroism of the people he meets. It is a pity he did not live long enough to write memoirs of his post-war life.
I recommend the new bio of Grant, "American Ulysses," by Dr. Ronald C. White. I had the good fortune to hear Dr. White give a talk last fall about the book in NYC and got a signed copy. The book has gotten great reviews from both historians as well as popular press, and I thought it (and the subject) was awesome. I also discovered Dr. White's previous book, an equally highly regarded biography of Lincoln, afterwards.



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Re: What are you reading lately?

#788

Post by MN-Skeptic » Sat Jun 03, 2017 11:27 pm

Sigh. You all read the books I should be reading. Reading this thread is like looking at folks talking about PBS or BBC shows while you sit down to reruns of Andy Griffith (the old ones with Barney) or Hogan's Heroes. My library books tend towards John Sandford, J.D. Robb, Kim Harrison, David Baldacci, and Patricia Briggs. Nothing high brow, rarely non-fiction.

However, I do have a hold placed on Al Franken's latest book - Al Franken, Giant of the Senate. I'm really looking forward to that.



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Re: What are you reading lately?

#789

Post by phelana » Sun Jun 04, 2017 1:24 am

MN-Skeptic wrote:Sigh. You all read the books I should be reading. Reading this thread is like looking at folks talking about PBS or BBC shows while you sit down to reruns of Andy Griffith (the old ones with Barney) or Hogan's Heroes. My library books tend towards John Sandford, J.D. Robb, Kim Harrison, David Baldacci, and Patricia Briggs. Nothing high brow, rarely non-fiction.

However, I do have a hold placed on Al Franken's latest book - Al Franken, Giant of the Senate. I'm really looking forward to that.
Don't feel bad. My current read is a Dollar Tree sci Fi special, Star Road.

But then I'm also reading Spooky Action at a Distance.

Geekiness all around.


Beatrice: Sigh no more, ladies, sigh no more. Men were deceivers ever. One foot in sea and one on shore, to one thing constant never. Then sigh not so but let them go and be you blithe and bonny, converting all your sounds of woe into hey nonny nonny.

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Re: What are you reading lately?

#790

Post by vic » Sun Jun 04, 2017 1:47 am

So I don't have to be too embarrassed about the book just finished - Cast Iron Cooking For Dummies?



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listeme
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Re: What are you reading lately?

#791

Post by listeme » Sun Jun 04, 2017 7:01 am

A few weeks ago I picked up a bag full of free christian suspense romances!

Beat that.

(Okay, it was for research, but still.)

Big bag, like the kind you store comforters in. Free on the side of the road.


We're used to being told it's our fault that men don't listen to us.

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Re: What are you reading lately?

#792

Post by Addie » Sun Jun 04, 2017 9:23 am

A gift from Jebus hisself :lol:


¡Qué vergüenza!

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Re: What are you reading lately?

#793

Post by ZekeB » Sun Jun 04, 2017 9:42 am

Did you happen to be driving near Freehold, Iowa at the time?


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listeme
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Re: What are you reading lately?

#794

Post by listeme » Sun Jun 04, 2017 2:05 pm

Addie wrote:A gift from Jebus hisself :lol:
:mrgreen:

Exactly!


We're used to being told it's our fault that men don't listen to us.

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Re: What are you reading lately?

#795

Post by Whatever4 » Sun Jun 04, 2017 5:16 pm

listeme wrote:A few weeks ago I picked up a bag full of free christian suspense romances!

Beat that.

(Okay, it was for research, but still.)

Big bag, like the kind you store comforters in. Free on the side of the road.
Now all you need is someone to mansplain romance novels to you, and your research will be complete.


"[Moderate] doesn't mean you don't have views. It just means your views aren't predictable ideologically one way or the other, and you're trying to follow the facts where they lead and reach your own conclusions."
-- Sen. King (R-ME)

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listeme
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Re: What are you reading lately?

#796

Post by listeme » Sun Jun 04, 2017 5:22 pm

Whatever4 wrote:
listeme wrote:A few weeks ago I picked up a bag full of free christian suspense romances!

Beat that.

(Okay, it was for research, but still.)

Big bag, like the kind you store comforters in. Free on the side of the road.
Now all you need is someone to mansplain romance novels to you, and your research will be complete.
Yes! I do need this! :blink:


We're used to being told it's our fault that men don't listen to us.

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phelana
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Re: What are you reading lately?

#797

Post by phelana » Sun Jun 04, 2017 9:45 pm

vic wrote:So I don't have to be too embarrassed about the book just finished - Cast Iron Cooking For Dummies?
Is it any good?


Beatrice: Sigh no more, ladies, sigh no more. Men were deceivers ever. One foot in sea and one on shore, to one thing constant never. Then sigh not so but let them go and be you blithe and bonny, converting all your sounds of woe into hey nonny nonny.

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Re: What are you reading lately?

#798

Post by Whatever4 » Sun Jun 11, 2017 6:54 pm

Here's what you SHOULD be reading. Yes, it's a breezy magical (literally) romance, but it's very well written. By a member of the Boogle. Plus the heroine is named Ellie, who has a dog named Penny. Completely coincidentally.



Plus it's only 99¢.

IMG_0168.JPG
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"[Moderate] doesn't mean you don't have views. It just means your views aren't predictable ideologically one way or the other, and you're trying to follow the facts where they lead and reach your own conclusions."
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Re: What are you reading lately?

#799

Post by Foggy » Mon Jun 12, 2017 6:09 am

Al Franken, Giant of the Senate. Very enjoyable and entertaining.


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Re: What are you reading lately?

#800

Post by Tiredretiredlawyer » Mon Jun 12, 2017 9:10 am

Golden Prey by John Sanford. I am a sucker for mysteries, especially Jack Reacher and Lucas Davenport. This latest Davenport mystery is one of Sanford's best from a literary standpoint.


“I’ve been hooked since my first smell of C-4.” Linda Cox, first female Air Force Explosive Ordnance Disposal Technician, first to lead her own unit, go to war, be awarded a Bronze Star, and hold the highest enlisted rank of chief master sergeant.

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