Sunday Morning Book Thread 01-11-2015: Men Without Chests [OregonMuse]


book burning.jpg
Coming Soon


Good morning morons and moronettes and welcome to AoSHQ's stately, prestigious, and high-class Sunday Morning Book Thread. The only AoSHQ thread that is so hoity-toity, pants are required. Or kilts. Kilts are OK, too. But not tutus. Unless you're a girl.


Quote Of The Week

There is more than one way to burn a book. And the world is full of people running about with lit matches.

-Ray Bradbury


Lessons From France

So, it seems clear that the massacre in Paris this week most likely wasn't a suicide mission, but rather, the terrorists intended to do their murdering and then get away clean to continue the jihad for Allah. But fortunately, that's not happening. And the reason it didn't happen is because the terrorists violated Rule #1, which is: Whatever you do, you never, ever, EVER mess with the French police. Despite France's "surrender monkey" reputation, her police, especially at the national level, are nasty, surly bastards who take no sh* from anyone, and if you cross them, they will track you down like a dog and make sure you die ugly. Like this guy. I think the last thing this terrorist a-hole anticipated when he got up that morning was collapsing in front of a kosher supermarket while being pumped full of lead.

Now, the jihadis would have known this would be their fate if they only had taken the time to read Frederick Forsyth's novel The Day of the Jackal (which, despite having first been printed in the early 70s, still sells for a whopping $12.50 for the Kindle edition). The plot concerns a daring assassination attempt on French President Charles de Gaulle and thwarting the plans of the bad guys is up to the SDECE (I forget if this agency is roughly equivalent to the FBI or the CIA) and there's very little they won't do, up to and including kidnapping and torture, in order to stop the threat. This is a very entertaining page-turner and the 1973 movie version is probably one of the most exact, down-the-line adaptations of a book I have ever seen.

So, the terrorists have learned their lesson about violating rule #1. They'll never do it again.

Lesson #2 is that once again, we're reminded that the "elites" in the media and in the governing classes are poltroons, moral derelicts, or at the very least, have a completely different view of what constitutes good and evil than normal people.

I mean, are any of you morons surprised that Christian Amanapour referred to the Charlie Hebdo terrorists as "activists"? I didn't think so. She just couldn't bring herself to use the word "terrorist". Instead, she used a word that more apppropriately describes someone who makes phone calls on behalf of a political candidate, or who goes door to door soliciting donations to UNICEF. That's how absurd it is. It's a jaw-dropping excursion into la-la land where up is down and black is white.

You know who predicted this, don't you?

C.S. Lewis, that's who.

He wrote a book. Actually, he wrote a ton of books, but this one book he wrote, The Abolition of Man, tells about the corrosions that result when the possibility of objective truth is cast aside. Taking an English textbook as his starting point, Lewis traces out, with relentless logic, the corrupt and poisonous results that arise from the subjective approach taken by the textbook's authors, who reduce all of human experience to mere "sentiment":

In a sort of ghastly simplicity, we remove the organ and demand the function. We make men without chests and expect of them virtue and enterprise. We laugh at honour and are shocked to find traitors in our midst. We castrate and bid the geldings be fruitful.

What you get, Lewis describes, is empty men, "men without chests", as he calls them, men who know not virtue and would not be interested in it if they did. So it shouldn't surprise us that a CNN infobabe can be confronted with pure evil and yet refuse to publicly recognize it as such. She's been fed this postmodern swill her entire life, so she probably doesn't really know any better.

Although it must be said, if there ever was a Christian group that torched a falafel stand in Dearborn, few of us here would doubt that Ms. Amanapour would have any difficulty saying the 'T' word.

Oh, and another good C.S. Lewis book to read, and one of my favorites, is his God In The Dock collection of essays.

You can tell from many of the writings in this volume that Lewis was coming up against something odd and dangerous, and that with the benefit of hindsight, we know that what he was seeing, what he was criticizing, was the first glimmerings of postmodernism and deconstruction. He hung out all his adult life in academia, so naturally he'd be in a position to see the first stages of the corruption, before almost anybody else did. And since he died just before 1964, he mercifully missed out on seeing everything go completely to hell.

Meanwhile, in related news, Muslim leaders worldwide are rushing to condemn the Paris terror murders.

Fallout

Terrorism works:

The French novelist Michel Houellebecq, whose latest book featured on the cover of the satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo on the day of the massacre at its offices, has stopped its promotion as the victims were being mourned.

Houellebecq, a friend of economist Bernard Maris, who was among the 12 people shot dead on Wednesday, was "deeply affected" and had decided to leave Paris for an unspecified rural retreat, his agent said on Thursday.

And why might he do this?

Houellebecq's topical new novel Soumission (Submission), which imagines France being ruled by a radical Muslim president after France and Europe "submit" to Islam, came out on Wednesday.

His publisher's offices were evacuated shortly after the shootings at Charlie Hebdo and placed under police protection amid fears that France's enfant terrible may be on a terrorist hitlist. Houellebecq has in the past described Islam as the "stupidest" religion.

Oh, that's why.

"Submission" won't be published in English until September, but one of Houellebecq's earlier novels, The Map and the Territory, which sarirized the modern art world, is available in an English edition.

And there's this:

The writer is pictured on the cover of this week's Nouvel Observateur magazine, which went to press before the attack, saying: "I've survived every attack."

Way to paint a big ol' target on yourself, there, buddy. I'd bug out of Paris, too, if I had taunted a bunch of psychopathic murderers.

And of course, this story wouldn't be complete without the men without chests showing up and crapping all over everything:

After the attack, the French prime minister, Manuel Valls, told reporters: "France is not Houellebecq. It's not intolerance, hatred and fear."

See, because the evil here is not a group of murdering terrorists, but rather "islamophobia".


Off With Their Heads!

And for the times ahead of us, we might do well to bone up on the history of decapitation, and perhaps this would be a good starting point: Severed: A History of Heads Lost and Heads Found by Frances Larson. She starts out discussing the head of Oliver Cromwell, "Lord Protector" of England during the Interregnum.

It was sliced off in 1661, three years after his death, "impaled on a twenty-foot pole and mounted on the roof of Westminster Hall for the whole of London to see,"found its way "into private circulation," then was "transformed into a curiosity, a precious relic and a business opportunity." Finally, "in 1960, during a small, private ceremony, Cromwell's head was buried in its old oak box somewhere beneath the floor of the ante-chapel at Sidney Sussex College, Cambridge."

Me,I hope they freeze my head so I can be revived in the year 3000, like in Futurama.


That "Bilious Bore of Baltimore"

Fans of H.L. Mencken might be interested to know that the Library of America has come out with a new, single-volume edition of his three memoirs, Happy Days, Newspaper Days, and Heathen Days, which comes with nearly 200 pages of previously unpublished commentary, compiled in the form of footnotes or annotations by Mencken in the late 1940s and embargoed for some years after his death.

The Big Story of Mencken's early newspaper career was the Great Baltimore Fire of 1904 which reduced much of the city to rubble. How could such a huge fire not be quickly contained?

A major revelation was the hideous discovery, when fire companies from neighboring counties and states arrived, that hosepipes and hydrant couplings weren't standardized.

Oops.


Ruh Roh

Looks like Thomas Piketty (or as ace calls him, Thomas Pinketty) and his book Capital In The 21st Century, the book by Thomas Piketty (or as ace calls him, Thomas Pinketty) that gave Paul Krugman a thrill up his pant leg that lasted more than four hours, is in trouble:

One new study found more than 10 errors in Piketty's book, and says the errors suggest a strong partisan bias.

Ya think? Actually, both studies accuse Pinketty of cherry-picking his data. He defended his work in response to to an earlier critique published by the Financial Times, and so he'll probably do the same here.

And actually, if you look for Pinketty's book on Amazon, you'll see that critiques of it have become a veritable cottage industry.


What I'm Reading

I'm about half way through The Revolution From Rosinante, which was recommended by some of you a few weeks ago. I'm enjoying, the author has an interesting writing style that's difficult to describe. This is the first of the "Rosinante" trilogy. It's a "hard" SF story about a political revolution that slowly emerges on an asteroid colony set up by a Japanese corporation in 2039 AD. The main character is the company's main project manager who becomes the de facto leader of the colony.

___________

So that's all for this week. As always, book thread tips, suggestions, bribes, rumors, threats, and insults may be sent to OregonMuse, Proprietor, AoSHQ Book Thread, at the book thread e-mail address: aoshqbookthread, followed by the 'at' sign, and then 'G' mail, and then dot cee oh emm.

What have you all been reading this week? Hopefully something good, because, as you all know, life is too short to be reading lousy books.

Posted by: Open Blogger at 09:18 AM




Comments

(Jump to bottom of page)

1 Rereading the Wheel of Time series on the Kindal.


Moronette Sabrina Chase has a new book out at Amazon


http://tinyurl.com/kkpea2b

Posted by: Vic at January 11, 2015 09:13 AM (wlDny)

2 Fantastic topic.

Posted by: KT at January 11, 2015 09:14 AM (qahv/)

3 There is more than one way to burn a book. And the world is full of people running about with lit matches.

-Ray Bradbury

------------------------------------



It is actually hard to burn a book or a catalog without tearing it into pieces first.

Posted by: Vic at January 11, 2015 09:14 AM (wlDny)

4 A good old fashion book burning, coming to a college campus near you. See to it that they buy carbon credits first.

Posted by: deepred at January 11, 2015 09:14 AM (xv5cf)

5 Moronette Sabrina Chase has a new book out at Amazon

This is a new one? Amazon lists the publication date as July, 2014

Posted by: OregonMuse at January 11, 2015 09:16 AM (BB/Y7)

6 Lesson #2 is that once again, we're reminded that the "elites" in the
media and in the governing classes are poltroons, moral derelicts, or at
the very least, have a completely different view of what constitutes
good and evil than normal people.



Lesson number 2 can be shortened to just say anything that hurts the US or the West is good.

Posted by: Vic at January 11, 2015 09:16 AM (wlDny)

7 I didn't think so. She just couldn't bring herself to use the word terrorist.


None of the national media, including Fox, use the term terrorist. Most of the time they use "militants". They are all scum.

Posted by: Vic at January 11, 2015 09:18 AM (wlDny)

8 I've been meaning to read some C.S. Lewis, and now seems like the time. Just ordered Abolition of Man.

The remarkable thing about these men without chests is that they also lack spines, testicles and brains. How exactly do they stay upright?

Posted by: pep at January 11, 2015 09:19 AM (4nR9/)

9 See, because the evil here is not a group of murdering terrorists, but rather islamophobia.


What chafes my butt is that the so-called islamaphobia only exists in the eyes of the MFM.

Posted by: Vic at January 11, 2015 09:20 AM (wlDny)

10 footnotes or annotations by Mencken in the late 1940s and embargoed for some years after his death.



Why were they embargoed?

Posted by: Vic at January 11, 2015 09:22 AM (wlDny)

11 5 This is a new one? Amazon lists the publication date as July, 2014


Posted by: OregonMuse at January 11, 2015 09:16 AM (BB/Y7)


Well, its the first time I have seen it. Maybe its new for the Kendle.

Posted by: Vic at January 11, 2015 09:24 AM (wlDny)

12 knowing what Mencken might say, maybe they were embargoed due to 'insensitivity"...

Posted by: geezer der mensch at January 11, 2015 09:26 AM (1i/Fh)

13 A friend's father had been a young German Youth in the 20's, and per his son, said that there were only so many copies of the forbidden books in Germany to burn at the time.

So they used old textbooks to fill out the bonfires.

Posted by: Kindltot at January 11, 2015 09:28 AM (t//F+)

14 Why were they embargoed?

Good question. The review article doesn't say.

Posted by: OregonMuse at January 11, 2015 09:29 AM (BB/Y7)

15 Robert A Heinlein's name has come up a few times on the Book Thread-

Last night, I saw a new movie -

"Predestination"

based on his short story "All You Zombies".


"All You Zombies" more or less blew my mind when I read it years ago and I thought it would be unfilmable
so I was curious if they succeeded or not.

Actually, they did. It's a damn good movie.

I won't discuss it much because it's pretty much impossible to do that without SPOILERS.

The less you know about "Predestination" or "All You Zombies" before reading or watching the better your experience will be and the more you will enjoy it.

Lots of twists and turns esp. in the movie.


One warning- if you watch the trailer-

you'll get the idea that this is a fast moving action movie about time-traveling cops trying to stop a massive terrorist attack that occurred in the past.

Well, yes and no.

Yes, it's about time-traveling cops trying to stop a massive terrorist attack in the past-

No, it's not a fast moving action movie.

"Predestination" is really more of a character study, with long periods of charactery stuff punctuated by violence.


Anyway without spoilers that's really all I can say.

Great acting. Great script. Excellent direction.

Check it out.

Posted by: naturalfake at January 11, 2015 09:30 AM (KBvAm)

16 Hello, book thread.


Apropos considering the previous thread.

Posted by: Ricardo Kill at January 11, 2015 09:31 AM (w7Esh)

17 I finished The Great Debate: Edmund Burke, Thomas Paine, and the Birth of Right and Left, by Yuval Levin.

I've tried reading Burke in the past (Reflections on the Revolution in France) but didn't make much progress because he seemed to be an apologist for monarchy. I should have stuck with it. I'll say why shortly.

I'd had virtually no exposure to Paine, but what I thought I knew was that he was a jingoistic pamphleteer. Again, I was wrong, and should have paid more attention to him.

This book is a dialectic on the different viewpoints between these two men, and their approach to government and revolution. It is fascinating reading. Boiled down to the essentials, Burke is a gradualist who thinks it is a huge mistake to jettison the existing structures, even when they are flawed. He uses the French Revolution as an object lesson in the perils of abrupt change. Paine is a rationalist who thinks the way to make societal progress is to jettison the historical baggage and start anew from first principles. He uses the American revolution as his example, but was also a big supporter of the French Revolution.

Both men make excellent points in the process of a long and public debate about their respective approaches.

I went back and forth about a hundred times as to who was right.

In the end, I agree with Burke up to a point, and then with Paine. That's just dodging the issue, of course, because the real question is how to define that point.

As I said, these are two of the heaviest heavyweights out there, and Levin does an excellent job of presenting both side's best arguments. If you think that men from 240 years ago are fusty and not too with it, you'll be astonished at how relevant these same arguments are today.

Very highly recommended.


Posted by: pep at January 11, 2015 09:31 AM (4nR9/)

18 Oh, yeah.

"Predestination" is in limited release right now.

And on On-Demand.


I saw it on on demand.

Posted by: naturalfake at January 11, 2015 09:31 AM (KBvAm)

19 I think the Islamic rage brothers' getaway was the most inept, stooopid effort, ever. They had a vehicle and a head start, and they got.....4 miles. Then they left their ID behind when they switched cars. 20 hour after the attack they had to buy gas, less than 30 miles from the attack site. Their so-called 'tactical expertise' consisted of standing next to each other away from cover and plinking away. they both ran back and forth at the same time. these guys only succeeded because of a clueless, unarmed, unsuspecting populace.

Posted by: sort of at January 11, 2015 09:31 AM (lt/w5)

20 15 Posted by: naturalfake at January 11, 2015 09:30 AM (KBvAm)


I have never seen a Heinlein movie that they did not absolutely ruin the book.

Posted by: Vic at January 11, 2015 09:32 AM (wlDny)

21 Piketty has been in the news recently. Per WSJ:

French Economist Thomas Piketty Refuses Legion of Honor
"In Snub, Best-Seller Author Said [French] Government Should Reform Economy, Not 'Decide Who Is Honorable'"

http://preview.tinyurl.com/ou68ee6

Oh, and the UK Daily Mail calls him a Wife Beater

Posted by: Kindltot at January 11, 2015 09:32 AM (t//F+)

22 My learn-to-read-again therapy program is moving slowly, but successfully. Mark Twain's Autobio book 1, big fat study version that daughter gave me for Christmas has been helpful. That man can write about a chair and make it entertaining. Writing for the joy of.

However, the volume is so huge and heavy, if I fall asleep reading, it could shift and injure me. I forgot how dangerous actual physical books can be.

I was going to quote a bit, but I'm too lazy afraid I wouldn't do a passage justice. Maybe later.

Posted by: mindful webworker at January 11, 2015 09:33 AM (/IMJl)

23
I have never seen a Heinlein movie that they did not absolutely ruin the book.

Posted by: Vic at January 11, 2015 09:32 AM (wlDny)


Yeah, me neither.

But, they absolutely nailed it. Very true to the story.

I was surprised.

Admittedly, this is one of Heinlein's weird ones.

But still...

Posted by: naturalfake at January 11, 2015 09:35 AM (KBvAm)

24 17 Posted by: pep at January 11, 2015 09:31 AM (4nR9/)


I have always viewed the American revolution as being unique in history. There was some retribution made to the royalists mostly in the South, but instead of wholesale slaughter like has occurred in other revolutions the royalists were allowed to leave and move to Canada.


That is very rare in other revolutions.

Posted by: Vic at January 11, 2015 09:35 AM (wlDny)

25 Hey, all. I haven't been reading much lately but I just got through the Swiss Family Robinson for the first time. I liked it; definitely a good way to spend a few hours, and it was neat to see how the family used what was available on the island to thrive and make a life for themselves. Next reading material will probably be Captains Courageous.

Posted by: right wing whippersnapper at January 11, 2015 09:37 AM (ThxKk)

26 g'mornin', 'rons

Posted by: AltonJackson at January 11, 2015 09:39 AM (4gN5w)

27 I received a $50 Amazon gift certificate for Christmas and I am debating whether to spend it on books or movies. I originally wanted to get the Robert Duval movie Open Range on Bluray until I saw that they were wanting $44 for it. I'll wait and get books instead.

Posted by: Vic at January 11, 2015 09:42 AM (wlDny)

28 MWW, I love Twain. He has one of the best voices of any American writer, and maybe even all English writers, depending on your criteria.
He does have some clunkers, but even those are well written.

Gutenberg has a good number of his works, and not just the Prince and Pauper, or Huckleberry Finn, but stuff that is harder to find as well. If you want to read more ebooks.

Posted by: Kindltot at January 11, 2015 09:42 AM (t//F+)

29 That is very rare in other revolutions.
Posted by: Vic at January 11, 2015 09:35 AM (wlDny)

It's rare in other revolutions because for some reason the French revolution, not the American one, became the template for the revolutions which came after.

Posted by: Donna &&&&&& V. (brandishing ampersands) at January 11, 2015 09:43 AM (+XMAD)

30 After reading my dad's WWII diary I have begun writing my second book. A fictional historical novel set mostly on the beachhead at Anzio involving a unique special animal warfare weapons system. Rough outline is in place, story shaping up nicely. Actual chapters taking form. I'll let y'all know how it goes.


The men in this book will have chests.

Posted by: Seamus Muldoon at January 11, 2015 09:44 AM (NeFrd)

31 "...a bunch of psychopathic murderers."

OregonMuse, I have to strenuously disagree with this description of the terrorists.

They are sane, rational actors. We describe them as "crazy" and "insane" and "lunatic" and "nuts" at our peril.

They operate under very different rules than you and I; rules that we simply do not comprehend using our modern Western logic.

But they are very, very sane.

Posted by: CharlieBrown'sDildo at January 11, 2015 09:45 AM (Zu3d9)

32 20 It's rare in other revolutions because for some
reason the French revolution, not the American one, became the template
for the revolutions which came after.

Posted by: Donna V. (brandishing ampersands) at January 11, 2015 09:43 AM (+XMAD)

The English had several revolutions before (or civil wars if you will) that were very bloody affairs.

Posted by: Vic at January 11, 2015 09:46 AM (wlDny)

33 "It's rare in other revolutions"



I've oft read that the reason the American Revolution didn't devolve into the French one is the Westward expansion. People in France couldn't pick up stakes and go west, away from the government, the way Americans could when they were dissatisfied. There was an outlet in America that there was not in France.

Posted by: Ricardo Kill at January 11, 2015 09:47 AM (w7Esh)

34 Sorta off topic, but terrorists did some low level terrorism to a German newspaper that had the courage to publish the Charlie cartoons.

Posted by: Lauren at January 11, 2015 09:47 AM (MYCIw)

35 ..."The men in this book will have chests."
-Posted by: Seamus Muldoon at January 11, 2015 09:44 AM (NeFrd)

War Chests!

...no. Not "war-chests".

More like "War-Eagle", as the rallying-cry for Auburn.

Forget it. I don't even know you people, anymore.

Posted by: ColdBeer1 (Slap) (T) at January 11, 2015 09:47 AM (16bOT)

36 Amanpour is not a woman without a chest. She is not unable to see right from wrong or declare this right and that is wrong; she's on the other side.

Posted by: eman at January 11, 2015 09:48 AM (MQEz6)

37 Can we have at least one thread that is not about the assholes in Paris?

Posted by: Vic at January 11, 2015 09:49 AM (wlDny)

38 I originally wanted to get the Robert Duval movie Open Range on Bluray until I saw that they were wanting $44 for it. I'll wait and get books instead.

I've made out pretty well buying used and "new in package" Blu-Ray movies on eBay at reduced prices. Caveat emptor, of course.

Posted by: OregonMuse at January 11, 2015 09:50 AM (BB/Y7)

39 Wouldn't 'islamophobes' be the people who are changing their behavior to not anger the people they're afraid of?

Posted by: --- at January 11, 2015 09:50 AM (MMC8r)

40 >>>>The English had several revolutions before (or civil wars if you will) that were very bloody affairs.<<<<<

"Off with his head! And place it above the gates, that York may o'erlook York!"

Margaret wasn't big on prisoners.

Posted by: the guy that moves pianos for a living... at January 11, 2015 09:50 AM (M6Vhk)

41 Cold Beer-

When I was a skinny preadolescent I dreamed not of War Chests.

More like Hope Chests


As in, "I hope I get a chest."

Posted by: Seamus Muldoon at January 11, 2015 09:50 AM (NeFrd)

42 ..."They are sane, rational actors. We describe them as "crazy" and "insane" and "lunatic" and "nuts" at our peril.

They operate under very different rules than you and I; rules that we simply do not comprehend using our modern Western logic.

But they are very, very sane.
"
-Posted by: CharlieBrown'sDildo at January 11, 2015 09:45 AM (Zu3d9)

Until we get this across to anyone with a pulse? We are fighting "ghosts".

I agree 100% and this cannot be stressed often enough.

Posted by: ColdBeer1 (Slap) (T) at January 11, 2015 09:50 AM (16bOT)

43 Posted by: pep at January 11, 2015 09:31 AM (4nR9/)

Thanks for that informative summary, pep. It sounds good.

More than a few mystery/thriller buffs I know have told me "Day of the Jackal" is one of the best in the genre. I haven't read the book or seen the movie and so it would be good to do both.

Have any morons or 'ettes read "Unbroken" and then seen the movie? I'd be interested in knowing how the two compare.

Posted by: Donna &&&&&& V. (brandishing ampersands) at January 11, 2015 09:50 AM (+XMAD)

44 -Posted by: Seamus Muldoon at January 11, 2015 09:50 AM (NeFrd)

I had one. Now they call them "moobs".

Posted by: ColdBeer1 (Slap) (T) at January 11, 2015 09:51 AM (16bOT)

45 38 I've made out pretty well buying used and "new in package" Blu-Ray movies on eBay at reduced prices. Caveat emptor, of course.


Posted by: OregonMuse at January 11, 2015 09:50 AM (BB/Y7)

I have been scared to buy anything from ebay.

Posted by: Vic at January 11, 2015 09:51 AM (wlDny)

46 Great book. Read it about 25 years ago. It's due for another read so that's for the reminder.

Lewis packs so much into just a single sentence or paragraph that it takes a country boy a bit of time to get through it but it's worth the time spent.

And Ernie Pyle. Re-reading "Brave Men." Really wish I'd had the fortune of meeting Ernie.

Posted by: TangoNine at January 11, 2015 09:52 AM (x3YFz)

47 I first read "The Abolition of Man" a few months ago after it was mentioned on the book thread. My only previous Lewis reading was the "Out of the Silent Planet" series and that was over 40 years ago. "Abolition" has to be one of the most profound books of the 20th century. I plan to re-read it this week in light of the stuff going on in France and the official/media treatments. It has also led me to collect as many CS Lewis writings as I can find. I've got quite a few so far.

I finished "The Two Towers" and I'm starting "The Return of the King" and interspersing chapters with parts of "The Inklings" about Tolkien, Lewis, and others of that group.

I suspect more of the Lewis apologia is in store this year. I'm not religious but they certainly speak to me on other levels.

Posted by: JTB at January 11, 2015 09:52 AM (FvdPb)

48 I have bought used books from Amazon though and they turned out to be really good.

Posted by: Vic at January 11, 2015 09:53 AM (wlDny)

49 Can't stay to read -- will return later to finish post.

Just wanted to say "Amen" regarding C.S. Lewis's prescience.

Posted by: Mindy at January 11, 2015 09:54 AM (E3Eat)

50 I've been working my through "Bridge to the Sun" by Gwen Terasaki, the American wife of a high-ranking Japanese diplomat during WWII. The book is interesting, but odd. My reaction so far can be summed up as "huh?"

I'm just to the point where Pearl Harbor happens, so thus far into the book Japan has been innocently engaged in building a buffer zone to protect the Chinese from the Russians (huh?). To be fair, she doesn't talk a lot about politics and what's going on in the world; as a housewife, her focus is primarily on her family and domestic staff.

The Kindle edition was OCRed and then corrected very lightly, if at all, so it has all the sorts of things you would expect: digits embedded in words, spacing problems, line breaks in the middle of sentences, etc.

Posted by: Anachronda at January 11, 2015 09:55 AM (o78gS)

51 23


I have never seen a Heinlein movie that they did not absolutely ruin the book.



Posted by: Vic at January 11, 2015 09:32 AM (wlDny)



Yeah, me neither.



But, they absolutely nailed it. Very true to the story.



I was surprised.



Admittedly, this is one of Heinlein's weird ones.



But still...



Posted by: naturalfake

IMHO all of Heinlein's stories were out there, its what made him such a terrific writer.

I have never seen any Heinlein book turned into a movie that the director didn't try to rewrite or ignore complete subplots that were important to the overall story line.

Posted by: Gmac- Pondering...something... at January 11, 2015 09:55 AM (baiNQ)

52 I can only think of one fate worse than dying at the hands of the French police and that's spending the rest of one's life in a French prison.

But either way with these bastards is fine with me.

Posted by: FireHorse at January 11, 2015 09:56 AM (VMA3H)

53 "I have been scared to buy anything from ebay."


I've bought off of eBay, Amazon, GunBroker, etc. No troubles. Also have extra protection from BOA.

If you're really worried, get a pre-paid card not tied to your bank account. Load it. Pay away.

Posted by: Ricardo Kill at January 11, 2015 09:57 AM (w7Esh)

54 I finished "The Two Towers" and I'm starting "The
Return of the King" and interspersing chapters with parts of "The
Inklings" about Tolkien, Lewis, and others of that group.



I suspect more of the Lewis apologia is in store this year. I'm not religious but they certainly speak to me on other levels.

Posted by: JTB at January 11, 2015 09:52 AM (FvdPb)


Trust me on this: go buy every David Gemmell book (there's about 30 of them)>

David was an alcoholic, smoked 30 packs a day but in my opinion one of the best fantasy fiction story tellers ever. Druss The Legend <--- start there.

Posted by: TangoNine at January 11, 2015 09:57 AM (x3YFz)

55 OH, good, I get to pimp another of my favorite book.
Fiat Money Inflation in France by Andrew Dickson White.

http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/6949

Andrew Dickson White was also rector of Princeton and discusses the evolution of fiat currencies in post-revolution France.

Some of the elements that lead to the French Revolution was inflation, bad harvests, and wage and price controls.
With the revolution the Assembly determined (in spite of proof within the previous century that it was a terrible idea) to establish a new, fiat currency. It hyper-inflated and was devalued, replaced, made worse by further wage, price, and regulation controls creating a situation where nobody could figure out how to do anything economically.
Dickson White claims that the only thing that brought the economy to manageable chaos was the establishment of the species currency and the fact that the unemployment, due to market distortions' was kept artificially low because of the huge numbers of French men of working age being killed in the wars.

One of the things the continental congress, and afterwards the federal government did was to retire its debt, and not go to a fiat currency. This I think is one of the moderating elements post American revolution. Peace had a profit attached to it, where in France, there was not.

Posted by: Kindltot at January 11, 2015 10:00 AM (t//F+)

56 'The Day of the Jackal' was a good book. One thing though, Forsyth did bog down a bit when giving all the info you needed about how to obtain a false birth certificate, leading all the way to gaining a passport. Pretty technical.


But still, it was a hell of a read.

Posted by: HH at January 11, 2015 10:00 AM (Ce4DF)

57
Read Echopraxia by Peter Watts

The writer is an immense douche who got a well deserved beat-down by the border patrol, but he's not a bad writer, sorta.

Daniel Bruks is a living fossil, a field biologist in a world where biology has turned computational. Taking refuge in the Oregon desert, hes turned his back on a humanity that shatters into strange new subspecies with every heartbeat. But he awakens one night to find himself at the center of a storm that will turn all of history inside-out.

Extended review here:

www.tor.com/blogs/2014/08/book-review-echopraxia-peter-watts

And a story set in the same universe to sample:

www.tor.com/stories/2014/07/the-colonel-peter-watts

Watts' books are all about the ideas. His characterizations and descriptions are decent, but he does have a problem with his plots losing track and being difficult to follow. Where you are and why are often murky.

But the ideas, mostly near-singularity biology and computers -- which are one in the same at this point -- are fascinating.

Try the free short story and see if you like it yourself.

Posted by: Laurie David's Cervix at January 11, 2015 10:02 AM (kdS6q)

58 Thanks OregonMuse. Lots of good stuff to gnaw on, as per usual.

Cannot recommend the incomparable P.J O'Rourke's "Parliament of Whores" highly enough (thanks WeirdDave for tip). The essays came out around the time of Papa Bush but are (alas) even more relevant today. Every line is hilarious. I was going to pull the killer quotes but that would mean duping the whole text and I'm not going to the barrel pantsless (hey, it's early).

"White Gold: the Extraordinary Story of Thomas Pellow and Islam's One Million White Slaves" by Giles Milton. This tale of a young sailor captured by the Barbary pirates relates not just the evils of slavery but the horrors of living under a cruel sultan who rules by fiat. *But we know that*. The muslim slave traders went as far afield as Greenland and Ireland, and Cornwall, where the lad Pellow lived, was particularly hard hit in the mid-17th century. They planted the flag of Islam on one of the Channel Islands! This is a very long conflict we've been in.

Posted by: All Hail Eris at January 11, 2015 10:02 AM (KH1sk)

59 "The writer is pictured on the cover of this week's Nouvel Observateur
magazine, which went to press before the attack, saying: "I've survived
every attack."

___

hah. everyone who wears the same socks to a football game or carries a lucky coin knows the instant that you tempt fate the liklihood of your chute not opening just quadrupled.

Natural selection. It exists.

Posted by: TangoNine at January 11, 2015 10:02 AM (x3YFz)

60 I have never seen a Heinlein movie that they did not absolutely ruin the book.

I can't even think of any movie that was based on a Heinlein book, other than, of course, Starship Troopers, which Paul Verhoeven ruined.

Posted by: OregonMuse at January 11, 2015 10:04 AM (BB/Y7)

61 Posted by: TangoNine at January 11, 2015 09:57 AM (x3YFz)

OT - but TangoNIne, I'm glad you had a great day with the twins yesterday. I read your post about it and it warmed my heart.

Posted by: Donna &&&&&& V. (brandishing ampersands) at January 11, 2015 10:04 AM (+XMAD)

62 I'm read-reading two of my favorite books I read as a freshman in college to see if they've held up. The Matarese Circle by Robert Ludlum and Lords Of Discipline by Pat Conroy. So far so good. Probably liked Lords Of Discipline a little better then since it was contemporary for me since I was in college.

Posted by: Bob Belcher at January 11, 2015 10:04 AM (3jmxp)

63 Posted by: TangoNine at January 11, 2015 09:57 AM (x3YFz)

OT - but TangoNIne, I'm glad you had a great day with the twins yesterday. I read your post about it and it warmed my heart.

Posted by: Donna &&&&&& V. (brandishing ampersands) at January 11, 2015 10:04 AM (+XMAD)

64 I have never seen a Heinlein movie that they did not absolutely ruin the book.

I
can't even think of any movie that was based on a Heinlein book, other
than, of course, Starship Troopers, which Paul Verhoeven ruined.

Posted by: OregonMuse at January 11, 2015 10:06 AM (BB/Y7)

65 I've nearly tapped out the Library's store of audio books, but the other day I found a Nero Wolfe I'd never read/heard before. Over My Dead Body. Typical Wolfe novel, with all the "hard-bitten" Private Eye patois. A ridiculously un-P.C. sequence in which Archie encounters a "colored" servant cowering in fear in the cellar had me laughing out loud. One of the cops gives a litany of all the people he "has no problems with", including "Kikes, Dagos, Wops, Micks, Square heads....". Who is "square head" a slur for?

Posted by: Lincolntf at January 11, 2015 10:07 AM (2cS/G)

66 I've nearly tapped out the Library's store of audio books, but the other day I found a Nero Wolfe I'd never read/heard before. Over My Dead Body. Typical Wolfe novel, with all the "hard-bitten" Private Eye patois. A ridiculously un-P.C. sequence in which Archie encounters a "colored" servant cowering in fear in the cellar had me laughing out loud. One of the cops gives a litany of all the people he "has no problems with", including "Kikes, Dagos, Wops, Micks, Square heads....". Who is "square head" a slur for?

Posted by: Lincolntf at January 11, 2015 10:07 AM (2cS/G)

67 hello test

Posted by: OregonMuse at January 11, 2015 10:07 AM (BB/Y7)

68 I've nearly tapped out the Library's store of audio books, but the other day I found a Nero Wolfe I'd never read/heard before. Over My Dead Body. Typical Wolfe novel, with all the "hard-bitten" Private Eye patois. A ridiculously un-P.C. sequence in which Archie encounters a "colored" servant cowering in fear in the cellar had me laughing out loud. One of the cops gives a litany of all the people he "has no problems with", including "Kikes, Dagos, Wops, Micks, Square heads....". Who is "square head" a slur for?

Posted by: Lincolntf at January 11, 2015 10:07 AM (2cS/G)

69 I've nearly tapped out the Library's store of audio books, but the other day I found a Nero Wolfe I'd never read/heard before. Over My Dead Body. Typical Wolfe novel, with all the "hard-bitten" Private Eye patois. A ridiculously un-P.C. sequence in which Archie encounters a "colored" servant cowering in fear in the cellar had me laughing out loud. One of the cops gives a litany of all the people he "has no problems with", including "Kikes, Dagos, Wops, Micks, Square heads....". Who is "square head" a slur for?

Posted by: Lincolntf at January 11, 2015 10:07 AM (2cS/G)

70 Posted by: HH at January 11, 2015 10:00 AM (Ce4DF)

I assume Obama read Day Of The Jackal.

Posted by: Bob Belcher at January 11, 2015 10:08 AM (3jmxp)

71 Have any morons or 'ettes read "Unbroken" and then seen the movie? I'd be interested in knowing how the two compare.
Posted by: Donna &&&&&& V. (brandishing ampersands) at January 11, 2015 09:50 AM (+XMAD)
------
I've done both. I loved the book and thought the movie was a very solid faithful rendering of the story. But, it ends with Zamperini's release, whereas the book continues with his hard-won victory over his anger and PTSD through faith.

Posted by: All Hail Eris at January 11, 2015 10:08 AM (KH1sk)

72 Posted by: HH at January 11, 2015 10:00 AM (Ce4DF)

I assume Obama read Day Of The Jackal.

Posted by: Bob Belcher at January 11, 2015 10:08 AM (3jmxp)

73 OT - but TangoNIne, I'm glad you had a great day with the twins yesterday. I read your post about it and it warmed my heart.

Posted by: Donna V. (brandishing ampersands) at January 11, 2015 10:04 AM (+XMAD)


Awww. Man those little firecrackers is fast and smarter than we give 'em credit for.

It's hard getting the little squirrels to pay attention long enough to bait a hook, but have you ever seen a kid reel in his first trout?

Man that's cool stuff.

Posted by: TangoNine at January 11, 2015 10:08 AM (x3YFz)

74 Square heads....". Who is "square head" a slur for?

As per my parents, someone of German or Scandinavian extraction.

Posted by: pep at January 11, 2015 10:10 AM (4nR9/)

75 Who is "square head" a slur for?

Dutch, I believe.

Posted by: Kindltot at January 11, 2015 10:10 AM (t//F+)

76 And a double post to start the day, how nice.

Posted by: Lincolntf at January 11, 2015 10:10 AM (2cS/G)

77 If the French had chests and weren't gelded. They would do a million man march through the muzzie 'no ego's zones. With pitchforks and fungo bats.

Posted by: Moon Moon at January 11, 2015 10:11 AM (2ivCz)

78 Quadruple! Sorry, it froze and said "Open Gateway Error" or something, and then kinda refreshed itself a few times.

Posted by: Lincolntf at January 11, 2015 10:11 AM (2cS/G)

79 I picked up "The Guns at Last Light" the last of a trilogy by Rick Atkinson for my dad. It follows the war from Normandy to V-E Day, roughly following the route he took when he landed there after D-Day. I was hoping to stir memories of places he had been without digging up bad things that were long forgotten. So far so good, every time I visit him he tells me where he's at in the book and what he remembers. One example is being on the road to Bastogne where Patton took fuel and non-infantry from his unit to help in the fight. He didn't get volunteered because he was on a 40mm Bofor crew. Pretty cool because he's 90 and there aren't a lot of those guys left to tell stories.

Posted by: dartist at January 11, 2015 10:11 AM (ahBY0)

80 Danke.

Posted by: Lincolntf at January 11, 2015 10:11 AM (2cS/G)

81 their mom had that bleary eyed look mom's get after dealing day to day with 2 little critters that have self-recharging batteries.

I volunteered to take 'em off her hands for a bit and the look of "oh, please?" told the whole story.

Posted by: TangoNine at January 11, 2015 10:12 AM (x3YFz)

82 F'n auto correct. No go zones.

Posted by: Moon Moon at January 11, 2015 10:12 AM (2ivCz)

83 maybe we can get 'em in the summer and do all kindsa stuff we don't tell the women folk about.

EXPLOSIONS!

Posted by: TangoNine at January 11, 2015 10:14 AM (x3YFz)

84 Sorry for the double and triple posts, I was getting gateway timeout errors. I think there were a few hiccups in pixy's software.

Posted by: OregonMuse at January 11, 2015 10:14 AM (BB/Y7)

85 and for the record: the only difference between a 9 year old boy and a 47 year old boy is the ability to buy your own guns.

Posted by: TangoNine at January 11, 2015 10:15 AM (x3YFz)

86
Read The Getaway God: A Sandman Slim Novel by Richard Kadrey

Being a half-human, half-angel nephilim with a bad rep and a worse attitude not to mention temporarily playing Lucifer, James Stark aka Sandman Slim has made a few enemies. None, though, are as fearsome as the vindictive Angra Om Ya the old gods. But their imminent invasion is only one of Starks problems right now as. LA is descending into chaos

Have read all of Kadrey's Sandman Slin books and have enjoyed them all -- mostly.

His strength is characterization. The people in his book feel real, you understand their motivations and you care about what happens to them. The magical physics and cosmology of his universe are coherent and well used.

His big problem is plotting. Good set up and action, typically poor resolution. The endings of his books always seem rushed as if he's writing to the page count.

Try the first book, Sandman Slim, and go from there.

Posted by: Laurie David's Cervix at January 11, 2015 10:15 AM (kdS6q)

87 "Abolition of Man" is my favorite CS Lewis book. Thanks for highlighting it here.

Posted by: Caliban at January 11, 2015 10:15 AM (3GFMN)

88 83 maybe we can get 'em in the summer and do all kindsa stuff we don't tell the women folk about.

EXPLOSIONS!
Posted by: TangoNine at January 11, 2015 10:14 AM (x3YFz)
-------
Safety training! It's important. You'd be doing her a service.

Posted by: All Hail Eris at January 11, 2015 10:16 AM (KH1sk)

89 If the French had chests and weren't gelded. They
would do a million man march through the muzzie 'no ego's zones. With
pitchforks and fungo bats.
Posted by: Moon Moon at January 11, 2015 10:11 AM (2ivCz)


I have been told that in certain areas of Paris, local citizens' organizations have put together cultural "wine and sausage" parades, where they celebrate the bounty of the French culinary tradition and drop pork sausage crumbs and slop wine on the streets while parading.
'Taint a million man, and there are no pitchforks, but it does result in wailing and gnashing of teeth.

Posted by: Kindltot at January 11, 2015 10:16 AM (t//F+)

90 Posted by: Laurie David's Cervix at January 11, 2015 10:02 AM (kdS6q)

I read "Echopraxia" and I say as a huge Peter Watts fan-

"Meh."

The plot was a series of repeats and dead-ends and in the end the whole of the trip really wasn't necessary.

Like you say, interesting ideas though.

The end was kind of jerry rigged around the "Starfish" ending and one you could see coming from a mile away.

Not one of his best efforts- probably cuz he's been sick with a flesh-eating bacteria or some such for the last year or two.

If you're going to read Watts, read-

"Blindsight"

and

"Starfish"


Both excellent novels of ideas with a good plots.

Posted by: naturalfake at January 11, 2015 10:17 AM (KBvAm)

91 ..."and for the record: the only difference between a 9 year old boy and a 47 year old boy is the ability to buy your own guns."
-Posted by: TangoNine at January 11, 2015 10:15 AM (x3YFz)

Probably not, though. So there's that.

The sentiment is too "Progressive" for my tastes.

That being said? I'm-a go sledding soon!

Posted by: ColdBeer1 (Slap) (T) at January 11, 2015 10:19 AM (16bOT)

92 75 Who is "square head" a slur for?

Dutch, I believe.


Dutch stubbornness is legendary. I've got a Dutch friend who's got a refrigerator magnet that reads like an epitaph in a Dutch cemetery:

Wooden shoes
Wooden head
Wouldn't listen

Posted by: OregonMuse at January 11, 2015 10:19 AM (BB/Y7)

93 Posted by: Moon Moon at January 11, 2015 10:11 AM (2ivCz)

The "men without chests" isn't a just a French problem. It's a problem throughout the West. Western leadership is craven and rotten. Do you think the Brits and the Aussies are any different? Or us, the country which elected Obama, for that matter?

The Western response to all these incidents has been now, now, let's not be Islamophobic, standing in the street with candles, waving little signs that say "Je Suis Charlie" or taking selfies that show us with sad faces, that's action enough.

Posted by: Donna &&&&&& V. (brandishing ampersands) at January 11, 2015 10:21 AM (+XMAD)

94 "Abolition of Man" is Lewis at his finest. On a lighter book-thread note, I started "Comanche Moon," the 2nd book in the Lonesome Dove series. I recommend it if you're in the mood for a western tale.

Posted by: PabloD at January 11, 2015 10:21 AM (roESk)

95 TangoNine ... Thanks for the Gemmell tip. I've made a note and will keep an eye open at the local used book stores. They sound great.

Posted by: JTB at January 11, 2015 10:22 AM (FvdPb)

96
Echopraxia by Peter Watts

Not one of his best efforts- probably cuz he's been sick with a flesh-eating bacteria or some such for the last year or two. If you're going to read Watts, read "Blindsight"...
Posted by: naturalfake


His close encounter with necrotizing fasciitis was also well deserved. Seriously, the guy is a tool.

And I agree, if you're going to read one novel of his, go for Blindsight. Same themes and ideas, better -- but still wobbly -- plotting.

Posted by: Laurie David's Cervix at January 11, 2015 10:23 AM (kdS6q)

97 "You can tell that they're Eastern European by the shape of their head.", my friend would often say.

I laughed.

Posted by: ColdBeer1 (Slap) (T) at January 11, 2015 10:23 AM (16bOT)

98 I'll think I also revisit American Caesar by William Manchester as one of my favorite biographies. My favorite , because it's what you see in the Dictionary when you look up Only In America, is My Grandfather's Son by Clarence Thomas. ( okay it's an autobiography) .

Posted by: Bob Belcher at January 11, 2015 10:23 AM (3jmxp)

99 I may have mentioned this book last week, but in case I didn't I want to recommend "After the Winter" by Mark R. Healy.

Posted by: eman at January 11, 2015 10:24 AM (MQEz6)

100 "But not tutus. Unless you're a girl."

I reject your heteronormativity and promotion of gender stereotypes.

I want you all to call me 'Loretta'. It's my right as a man.

Posted by: Stan at January 11, 2015 10:25 AM (4HYng)

101 Square heads....". Who is "square head" a slur for?

As per my parents, someone of German or Scandinavian extraction.

Posted by: pep at January 11, 2015 10:10 AM (4nR9/)


That "square-head" thing is real.

My Grandmother was pure German and my Dad had a very square head.

That gene jumped a generation to my youngest.

He has the squarest head I've ever seen on a human being. Cute as hell.

Anyway, there you go a "slur" founded in reality.

Posted by: naturalfake at January 11, 2015 10:26 AM (KBvAm)

102 My Grandfather's Son by Clarence Thomas

Good autobiography. The poverty he grew up in is astounding. 'Cold and hungry' is how Clarence Thomas spent most of his childhood.


Posted by: OregonMuse at January 11, 2015 10:31 AM (BB/Y7)

103 okay then.

Posted by: eman at January 11, 2015 10:31 AM (MQEz6)

104 So, is this the place to talk about how irritated I was with the third Hobbit movie? Actually, I didn't really like any of them. Sure, they were good from a visual standpoint- nice landscapes, everything was very pretty and polished- but the writing was sloppy. I'm not a Tolkien fangirl or anything, but even I picked up on a bunch of plot holes etc. If Pete Jackson wants to make his personal fanfiction into a movie, that's fine, but don't try to pass it off as the real deal.


Posted by: right wing whippersnapper at January 11, 2015 10:31 AM (ThxKk)

105 I heard an extended interview on last night's John Batchelor show with the author of a book that came out last summer: "Give Me A Fast Ship" about the forming of the American navy during the Revolution. I enjoy such books partly because they involve where I grew up and partly because they show how daring and intrepidness can make all the difference against huge odds. "Six Frigates" by Ian Toll is another like that. Fascinating and, sometimes, inspiring reading. Colonial and Early American periods are my favorite parts of US history.

Posted by: JTB at January 11, 2015 10:32 AM (FvdPb)

106 >>..."and for the record: the only difference between a 9 year old boy and a 47 year old boy is the ability to buy your own guns."

Heh. Sounds like you had fun, T9!
Anyone who claims that there is no difference between the sexes has never spent quality time with a little boy. You cannot claim they are how they are because of society forcing "gender roles" on them. And thank God (literally and figuratively) for the difference!!

Posted by: Lizzy at January 11, 2015 10:32 AM (ABcz/)

107 I'm in the middle of "A.D.30" by Ted Dekker. I've read one or two of his books. I suppose you could call him a preacher, and if he is then he's the most interesting one that I can recall for many years.

Posted by: fairweatherbill bucking the wind at January 11, 2015 10:32 AM (ljIUb)

108

I'll think I also revisit American Caesar by William Manchester as one
of my favorite biographies.
Posted by: Bob Belcher



American Caesar is an excellent biography. The structure, pacing and detail of the book are pretty much perfect for a one volume bio for the general reader.

My beef would be the book reads to me as overly sympathetic towards MacArthur. But, since I really really don't like MacArthur, consider that a less than objective opinion.

Posted by: Laurie David's Cervix at January 11, 2015 10:32 AM (kdS6q)

109 Thanks for all the historical fiction recommendations last week. I now have a stack on the kindle. Cadfael was a nice surprise. I'd been resistant because of the PBS or BBC series, which I enjoyed but seemed too shallow to be a good read. I'll be buying many more from that series or possibly use the library and read those in dead tree form.

Posted by: PaleRider at January 11, 2015 10:32 AM (7w/kf)

110 I've been watching too much tv over the holidays and not in a huge reading mood. I watched this Fleming thing on netflix and ended up picking up a few free potboilers of that era and am making my way through.

A friend gave me Shogun so I guess I'll try that one. She tres to give me a huge stack of the series but it looked long and I don't even know if I will enjoy it yet. I'm not mad about reading a thousand page Real book in paperback! Too used to my kindle at this point.

Posted by: Lea - Marco? Polo! at January 11, 2015 10:33 AM (/bd0t)

111 Great post and book recommendations from the horde. I haven't read anything in weeks with the holidays and looks like there is a lot I need to add to the queue...

Posted by: Lizzy at January 11, 2015 10:34 AM (ABcz/)

112 CNN creaming itself over French unity March. That is accomplishing something. I see an opportunity for arab pickpockets

Posted by: ThunderB, Sharia Compliance Officer at January 11, 2015 10:34 AM (zOTsN)

113 So, is this the place to talk about how irritated I was with the third Hobbit movie?

We're over 100 comments now, so OT is OK.

And I agree with you about the Hobbit movie. I saw the first one and am not bothering with any of the others.

Posted by: OregonMuse at January 11, 2015 10:35 AM (BB/Y7)

114 I don't even know if I will enjoy it yet. I'm not
mad about reading a thousand page Real book in paperback! Too used to my
kindle at this point.

Posted by: Lea - Marco? Polo! at January 11, 2015 10:33 AM (/bd0t)

Shogun was the best of the Asian series. All the rest blow chunks until you get to Nobel House and it doesn't win any great prizes. And BTW, I traded in my dog eared copy of Shogun which I bought used for the Kindle version.

Posted by: Vic at January 11, 2015 10:37 AM (wlDny)

115 American Ceasar, yeah that's on my bookshelf. Great read. I may pick it up again this year.

Posted by: fairweatherbill bucking the wind at January 11, 2015 10:38 AM (ljIUb)

116 "My beef would be the book reads to me as overly sympathetic towards MacArthur."

Posted by: Laurie David's Cervix at January 11, 2015 10:32 AM (kdS6q)



I agree. And I'm guessing a hell of a lot of WWII vets would go along with that.

Posted by: HH at January 11, 2015 10:38 AM (Ce4DF)

117 Cadfael was a nice surprise. I'd been resistant
because of the PBS or BBC series, which I enjoyed but seemed too
shallow to be a good read. I'll be buying many more from that series
or possibly use the library and read those in dead tree form.

Posted by: PaleRider at January 11, 2015 10:32 AM (7w/kf)

I tried reading the Cadfael books a few years back, but I couldn't get into them. Not sure why, since I usually like historical fiction. Maybe I'll try again; sometimes I'll try a book, hate it, go back to it later, and discover that I actually like it.

Posted by: right wing whippersnapper at January 11, 2015 10:39 AM (ThxKk)

118 Posted by: Lea - Marco? Polo! at January 11, 2015 10:33 AM (/bd0t)

Shogun, and the next one in the series, Tai-Pan, are glorious books.

I would skip the middle ones and just read the last one....King Rat.

Posted by: CharlieBrown'sDildo at January 11, 2015 10:39 AM (Zu3d9)

119 Posted by: Vic at January 11, 2015 10:37 AM (wlDny)

You didn't like Tai-Pan?

Posted by: CharlieBrown'sDildo at January 11, 2015 10:40 AM (Zu3d9)

120 "Despite France's "surrender monkey" reputation, her police, especially at the national level, are nasty, surly bastards who take no sh* from anyone, and if you cross them, they will track you down like a dog and make sure you die ugly."

the more totalitarian the State the more like a military strike force the civilian police will be...

so I'm only giving this a finger-clap.

Posted by: Shoey at January 11, 2015 10:43 AM (vA94g)

121 I agree with you about the Hobbit movie. I saw the first one and am not bothering with any of the others.


Posted by: OregonMuse at January 11, 2015 10:35 AM (BB/Y7)

I probably wouldn't have bothered either, but one of my friends wanted to see the whole series, so she shanghai'd me into going with her. It's funny, though, because we're both very precise people when it comes to movies and plots, and yet she either didn't see the mistakes in the movie or didn't feel like talking about them. I, on the other hand, had to keep telling myself 'this is not the Hobbit' just to keep from rolling my eyes through the whole thing.

Posted by: right wing whippersnapper at January 11, 2015 10:44 AM (ThxKk)

122 Hi Peeps!

I'm sure it has already been mentioned, but C.S. Lewis died the same day as JFK. I find that interesting in a cosmic sort of ways.

Posted by: baldilocks at January 11, 2015 10:44 AM (GE9Jc)

123 I've always read Grisham. (Yeah, I know.)

Mom just gave me "Gray Mountain" for Christmas.

I found "The Brethren" to be lacking.

They are First Editions, so I treat them like baseball cards.

Any thoughts?

Posted by: ColdBeer1 (Slap) (T) at January 11, 2015 10:46 AM (16bOT)

124 way

Posted by: baldilocks at January 11, 2015 10:46 AM (GE9Jc)

125 I'm sure it has already been mentioned, but C.S.
Lewis died the same day as JFK. I find that interesting in a cosmic sort
of ways.

Posted by: baldilocks at January 11, 2015 10:44 AM (GE9Jc)
Wasn't there another famous person who died on that day as well? I seem to remember a trifecta of them, but I can't remember who the third one was.

Posted by: right wing whippersnapper at January 11, 2015 10:46 AM (ThxKk)

126 Yesterday I started and finished 'Wiseguy'. I've seen "Goodfellas" at least a dozen times and yet I could not put the book down.

Posted by: Wyatt's Torch at January 11, 2015 10:48 AM (zb7+h)

127 I'm sure it has already been mentioned, but C.S. Lewis died the same day as JFK. I find that interesting in a cosmic sort of ways.

Also Aldous Huxley. Same day.

Peter Kreeft wrote a book based on this odd coincidence.

Hi baldi. May God bless you.

Posted by: OregonMuse at January 11, 2015 10:50 AM (BB/Y7)

128 Re: Heinlein movies.

There's a version of The Puppet Masters out there with Donald Sutherland. It must have been mediocre, because I saw it and that's about all I remember.

Posted by: Darles Chickens at January 11, 2015 10:51 AM (5myPN)

129 Wasn't there another famous person who died on that day as well?

Aldous Huxley.

Posted by: OregonMuse at January 11, 2015 10:52 AM (BB/Y7)

130 I found Echopraxia .... what ?

Unreadable might be the word.

He cites singularity and computation as things, but the imagery and story tell us nothing about his ideas of them, as everything happening seemed random.

Gave up around halfway through, which is unusual for me, I tend to finish books, even ones I find reason(s) to dislike.

YMMV, and just my 0.02

Posted by: sock_rat_eez at January 11, 2015 10:52 AM (Hk17e)

131 Lewis in general is my favorite author, but amazingly Abolition of Man is perhaps one of the few that I have not read. From a fiction standpoint, the Space Trilogy is the best and That Hideous Strength in particular is one of my two favorite novels. It's also very perceptive about the way the future was going and the way that leftists could co-opt science.

Posted by: Paul at January 11, 2015 10:53 AM (1vxz6)

132 I've always read Grisham. (Yeah, I know.)



Mom just gave me "Gray Mountain" for Christmas.

Posted by: ColdBeer1 (Slap) (T) at January 11, 2015 10:46 AM (16bOT)


I started it but liberal bank bashing and the like turned me off, so I put it down.

I downloaded Diphallic Dude - Double Header- My Life with Two Penises this morning. It sounded very moron-like.

Posted by: Tunafish at January 11, 2015 10:54 AM (CPj+8)

133 "They are First Editions, so I treat them like baseball cards.

Any thoughts?"

Seems like the baseball cards wouldn't be as hard on the bike spokes.

Posted by: Village Idiot's Apprentice at January 11, 2015 10:54 AM (nHuU1)

134 CNNs Tapper says it's too bad the U.S. government isn't better represented (!)

Posted by: ThunderB, Sharia ComplianceOfficer at January 11, 2015 10:57 AM (zOTsN)

135 Yeah... I know, I know...

*I Get It, Assholes*

Should I just sell it on Ebay or Craig's List?

Man... you ask a serious question and sometimes with The Horde...

Posted by: ColdBeer1 (Slap) (T) at January 11, 2015 10:57 AM (16bOT)

136 I saw the first two Hobbit movies. They are visually interesting but the non-book parts added to pad things out are VERY jarring. I suspect the battle scenes in the third movie are brilliantly done but it can wait until some freebie premium channel preview, the way I saw the first two. Or until they are shown on non-premium TV.

My hope is that, like the LOTR movies, these will inspire youngsters to read the original book.

Posted by: JTB at January 11, 2015 10:58 AM (FvdPb)

137 Double Header- My Life with Two Penises

Holy crap, you're not pulling my leg, there's an actual book with that title.

I may have to feature it in next week's thread.

Posted by: OregonMuse at January 11, 2015 10:59 AM (BB/Y7)

138 Who is the black guy in the hat next to Hollande in the Pairs march? None of the news shows named him -- probably cause they don't know his name either.

Posted by: Costanza Defense at January 11, 2015 10:59 AM (ZPrif)

139 Squarehead = Scandi

Posted by: The Oort Cloud at January 11, 2015 10:59 AM (IpIAO)

140 It's a two-parter, I assume. o.O

Posted by: Y-not on the phone at January 11, 2015 10:59 AM (9BRsg)

141 Hobbit movies are like the world's longest video game cutscene.

Posted by: Costanza Defense at January 11, 2015 11:00 AM (ZPrif)

142 I think the President of Mali

Posted by: ThunderB, Sharia ComplianceOfficer at January 11, 2015 11:00 AM (zOTsN)

143 110
"Shogun" is an excellent book. Actually I felt it wasn't long enough. Very sorry when it ended. BTW, the mini series ain't too shabby either. Read the book first though.

50 I remember watching the movie adaptation of that book when I was a kid. It starred Carroll Baker and James Shigeta. As per usual with Hollywood, it focused on the love story. Surprised I remembered it after all these years.

Posted by: Tuna at January 11, 2015 11:00 AM (JSovD)

144 Posted by: ColdBeer1 (Slap) (T) at January 11, 2015 10:57 AM (16bOT)


Hey now, that was a pretty funny response.


Gotta admit, I laughed.

Posted by: HH at January 11, 2015 11:00 AM (Ce4DF)

145 Drudge is right.
Honestly think Obama wants to be UN Prez someday.

MATT DRUDGE @DRUDGE 2m
ALL Obama moves are designed to further his career in global govt after he leaves White House. Understand this, and things make more sense..

Posted by: Costanza Defense at January 11, 2015 11:01 AM (ZPrif)

146 Mali? Makes sense. Thx for the info.

Posted by: Costanza Defense at January 11, 2015 11:03 AM (ZPrif)

147 >>Honestly think Obama wants to be UN Prez someday.

So would renounce his US citizenship?

Posted by: Lizzy at January 11, 2015 11:04 AM (ABcz/)

148 "Hey now, that was a pretty funny response.
Gotta admit, I laughed.
"
-Posted by: HH at January 11, 2015 11:00 AM (Ce4DF)

Yeah... I'm usually pretty jovial. My apologies for this particular instance.

Posted by: ColdBeer1 (Slap) (T) at January 11, 2015 11:05 AM (16bOT)

149 Bernhard Levy says jihadis are the new facists and the March signifies the people, France and the world have had enough.

Posted by: ThunderB, Sharia ComplianceOfficer at January 11, 2015 11:06 AM (zOTsN)

150 TORTURE IS WRONG!!!!Better YOU die than a suspect is tortured.

Posted by: Sen Fiendstein at January 11, 2015 11:06 AM (oadif)

151 I'm rereading-

"The Magic Christian" by Terry Southern.


Probably, most people know the title from the "wild and wacky" movie from the 60s. The movie isn't particularly good.

The novel is surprisingly well-written with a masterfully simple prose style.

The style is much like an English comedy of manners among the rich with the anti-social antics of the main character Guy Grand described in polite and delicate detail.

(Sidenote: This may be because Southern's mentor was Henry Green, who wrote "Party Going", an English comedy of manners and one of the 50 greatest novels of the 20th century by Anthony Burgess)


The interesting thing is, as I've read, Guy Grand comes off not like the anti-establishment prankster showing up the hypocrisy of the squares, as the movie would have it-

but rather as a huge, bored dickweed who's had all the best in life but can find no purpose greater than tearing down the society and morals of those around him...just...because....he....can.

In the traditional English comedy of manners, Guy Grand would be "Freddy" the aimless rich son who's gone to all the best schools and can find nothing better to do than harmless hobbies like playing tennis and golf.

here, the aimless rich man turns malevolent and tries to destroy the heap in his own way.


Kind of sounds like our own navel-gazing, self-righteous elite doesn't it?

Guy Grand's "making it hot for them" stems from the same spring as does Obama's "inconvenience".

Of course, here in "The Magic Christian" it's played for laughs in a fictional book, not as a real world effort to destroy American society.



I'm beginning to believe that a lot of the novelists adopted by the hippies and leftards of the 60s (like Richard Brautigan who hated hippies)-

were far better observers of human nature and of those around them and far better writers,

than the agitprop wind-up toys the Left would make them out to be.

Posted by: naturalfake at January 11, 2015 11:07 AM (KBvAm)

152 Levy says weakness is over. Confront the plague of jihadi facism

Posted by: ThunderB, Sharia ComplianceOfficer at January 11, 2015 11:08 AM (zOTsN)

153 Read Day of the Jackal when it came out and stayed up most of the night finishing it. Have re-read it a couple of times since.

Have the movie on video and it is a very tight, true to the book adaptation. The guy who plays the assassin was terrific.

What is neat is that the assassin and his pursuers are real people. The assassin is totally deadly and probably sociopathic, but not some hyped up Stallone/Cruise/Schwarzengger/Damon superman. The cop isn't either, he gets nagged by his wife and is kind of a short, rumpled type. But tenacious doesn't begin to describe him.

Book and movie are well worth the time.

Cannot BELIEVE the outrageous Kindle prices for older books. Outrageous. Ugh. Thought they were going to cut this out.

Posted by: RM at January 11, 2015 11:08 AM (fRppw)

154 Good to know Vic! I was into the wine at that point and she tried to hand me a two foot high stack of paperbacks! I just took shogun so sounds like it was the right choice.

Lots of interesting non fiction recs today, but I have to throw in "when money dies" which was about inflation in post wwi Germany. Scary stuff

Posted by: Lea - Marco? Polo! at January 11, 2015 11:09 AM (/bd0t)

155 Working away this week at Tiny Bidness stuff, but took a few minutes to start on a book about Fred Harvey - who basically created the US's first hospitality company. "Appetite for America" - it's very good, so far. A comment on a website for romance writers got me thinking about having a heroine for an upcoming book who goes west as a Harvey Girl. Fred Harvey recruited young women to work as waitstaff in his restaurants and paid them quite generously by the standards of the day. So there's that project...

White Gold is quite amazingly good - it's an eye-opener, learning about how slavery was an integral part of the economy of Northern Africa and the middle-east under Turkish rule. And that they raided as far as the coasts of Cornwall, Ireland and even Iceland, not just attacking shipping.

I did a blog entry this week about a crusading journalist, who was a near contemporary of Mark Twain, and was a contemporary of O. Henry - William Cowper Brann, who was gunned down in the streets of Waco by an irate reader, in 1898. Brann was armed and shot back, though. Story here - http://tinyurl.com/pb3jvfu - which includes a link to some of his writings. He does read very much like Mark Twain, too.

Posted by: Sgt Mom at January 11, 2015 11:09 AM (95iDF)

156 64
I can't even think of any movie that was based on a Heinlein book, other
than, of course, Starship Troopers, which Paul Verhoeven ruined.

Posted by: OregonMuse at January 11, 2015 10:06 AM (BB/Y7)



The 1950 movie "Destination Moon" was based on Heinlein's "Rocketship Galileo". Turns out Heinlein had a hand in the screenplay, too:

https://tinyurl.com/lkbuerb

I haven't read the book, but the movie was excellent for its time in its realistic depiction of space travel, more than a decade before anybody actually flew into space.

Posted by: rickl at January 11, 2015 11:10 AM (sdi6R)

157 Let's see if France adjusts some of its laws and policies.

Let's if if there is more of a response than rallies and words.

Posted by: eman at January 11, 2015 11:11 AM (MQEz6)

158 The radical rightwing has always liked to control information either as national security or blasphemy or obsecenity The state is in control

Posted by: righter at January 11, 2015 11:12 AM (CiLUq)

159 119 You didn't like Tai-Pan?


Posted by: CharlieBrown'sDildo at January 11, 2015 10:40 AM (Zu3d9)

Tai Pan was OK.

Posted by: Vic at January 11, 2015 11:12 AM (wlDny)

160 but rather as a huge, bored dickweed who's had all the best in life but can find no purpose greater than tearing down the society and morals of those around him...just...because....he....can.

Well, at least he didn't spy for the Soviets, like those British 1%-ers Kim Philby, Donald Maclean, Guy Burgess, and Anthony Blunt did.

Posted by: OregonMuse at January 11, 2015 11:12 AM (BB/Y7)

161 So you capture a terrorist that has the security code to the nuclear time bomb ticking down in his San Francisco apartment. Sen Fiendstein believes that torture is wrong.

So the bomb explodes. Nobody was tortured.

Q: should Sen Fiendstein be tortured after the bomb explodes?

Posted by: torabora at January 11, 2015 11:13 AM (oadif)

162 Okay... since I'm not putting the books between the spokes in my little bicycle?

...whatever.

Posted by: ColdBeer1 (Slap) (T) at January 11, 2015 11:14 AM (16bOT)

163 Honor Untarnished - Donald V. Bennett

http://tinyurl.com/pnsnyv3

"Captain Richmond and I started to grab men to push up the bluffs, but now we got into a true short-range killing zone. All the Krauts had to do was lob grenades down at us, and every approach was covered by interlocking fields of fire, barbed wire and mines...


And then came the miracle. Even now, as I recall it, the memory brings tears to my eyes. A United States Navy destroyer (likely USS Frankford DD-497 - ed) came to our rescue. The men of Fox Green will forever be indebted to their comrades aboard that ship, for it was obvious that they came in, not just to fight, but also to draw fire away from us, so as to give us a needed breather so that we could get up that slope.


The destroyer came slicing in out of the smoke, so close that I swore it was going to beach itself not two hundred yards away. At that range it suddenly looked huge, like a battleship going in harm's way and every damn gun on that ship opened up, from five-inchers, to 20mm and 40mm antiaircraft, to machine guns, and I suspect more than one man had a rifle or pistol out.


They just blasted that crest and the bunker at near point-blank range. Rounds were literally shrieking in only a few feet over our heads, tearing across the cliff face, rubble raining down. My God, how we cheered them. We had not been forgotten... They tore the crap out of that crest and under their protective fire we rushed the high ground... We had our toehold on the coast of France..."

Read more:

http://www.americanthinker.com/blog/2010/10/happy_birthday_us_navy.html

Posted by: MachiasPrivateer at January 11, 2015 11:14 AM (ZPOAu)

164 My Liberal Relatives all think I'm a "conservative" in the dirty, pejorative sense of the word. But after sitting through two years of postmodern and critical theory for my degree, I am merely decidedly a classical liberal.

So I think I'll read now The Abolition of Man, which sounds like the practical explanation of this horrid, destructive philosophy and a reflection of today's society.

BTW where is Obama today? Not Paris.

Posted by: PJ at January 11, 2015 11:15 AM (cHuNI)

165 I saw the first two Hobbit movies. They are visually
interesting but the non-book parts added to pad things out are VERY
jarring. I suspect the battle scenes in the third movie are brilliantly
done but it can wait until some freebie premium channel preview, the way
I saw the first two. Or until they are shown on non-premium TV.



My hope is that, like the LOTR movies, these will inspire youngsters to read the original book.

Posted by: JTB at January 11, 2015 10:58 AM (FvdPb)
The battle scenes are visually well done, though of course, typical Hollywood. I think I even said out loud at one point 'Tactics? What tactics?' And, I agree with your assessment of the non- book canon additions. Most of them were very strange and not at all necessary.

Posted by: right wing whippersnapper at January 11, 2015 11:15 AM (ThxKk)

166 Let's see if they start rounding up jihadis in the 19 th arrondissement

Posted by: ThunderB, Sharia Compliance Monitor at January 11, 2015 11:15 AM (zOTsN)

167 I have always considered John Grisham a one hit wonder. I was stupid enough to buy all his books up through the Rainmaker. They all went steadily downhill after A Time To Kill. Unlike most of my books I have never reread any of them.

Posted by: Vic at January 11, 2015 11:20 AM (wlDny)

168 Let's see if they start rounding up jihadis in the 19 th arrondissement

If we all started rounding up those who would destroy our civilization, we'd run out of places to put them.

Or find they outnumber us.

Either way, it would at least be clarifying.

Posted by: Brother Cavil, Warlord of the Western Wastes at January 11, 2015 11:20 AM (m9V0o)

169 "They are First Editions, so I treat them like baseball cards.

Any thoughts?"

Chew the gum, ditch the cards.

Posted by: --- at January 11, 2015 11:21 AM (MMC8r)

170

Current crazy diet fad.

DASH diet

books here:
http://tinyurl.com/ohh58o7

Mayo Clinic's take:

DASH diet: Healthy eating to lower your blood pressure

http://tinyurl.com/qaavfbr


Basically like all others. Watch your calories, and eat healthy food.

no duh

Posted by: artisanal 'ette at January 11, 2015 11:21 AM (IXrOn)

171 Is there a COB out there now who can post a new open thread so the book thread can return to being a book thread?

Posted by: Vic at January 11, 2015 11:22 AM (wlDny)

172 My daughter and I wish very much that Peter Jackson would take on The Chronicles of Prydain for a movie project. There would be more than enough epic fantasy material in Lloyd Alexander's five-book cycle. I'd think it would be right up his alley, and it could even be filmed in New Zealand, too.

The Hobbit would have worked perfectly as a two-parter, without all the extra fill.

Posted by: Sgt Mom at January 11, 2015 11:22 AM (95iDF)

173 I haven't read the book, but the movie was excellent for its time in its realistic depiction of space travel, more than a decade before anybody actually flew into space.
Posted by: rickl

There was actually a short "novelette" called "Destination Moon", which I am not sure came before or after the movie. RAH might have had a hand in the screenplay and then novelized it afterward.

Posted by: Bossy Conservative.... after 5 pm at January 11, 2015 11:22 AM (+1T7c)

174 If the Paris peace with Islam protesters really wanted to make their point, they would all wear paper-mache heads of Mohamad, the Pedo-Prophet, wearing the turban bomb.

Posted by: Village Idiot's Apprentice at January 11, 2015 11:24 AM (nHuU1)

175 OK, back to talking about books.
Wound up buying and reading this one.
Later, I loaned it to another Moron who is enjoying it as well.
http://tinyurl.com/oyjo4ff

Posted by: Village Idiot's Apprentice at January 11, 2015 11:26 AM (nHuU1)

176 Have any morons or 'ettes read "Unbroken" and then seen the movie? I'd be interested in knowing how the two compare.

Posted by: Donna &&&&&& V. (brandishing ampersands) at January 11, 2015 09:50 AM (+XMAD)
============
They're kind of close. The book goes into a bit more detail about his coming to terms and letti g go of his hatred for those that totrtured him. Reading then seeing flic, i give flic a solid B.

Posted by: fastfreefall at January 11, 2015 11:26 AM (yRhBf)

177 Had to take a break from Sharyl Attkisson's "Stonewalled" as it was getting me very angry.


Not sure what is up next. Have to look at what I have on the Kobo and see what appeals to me.


In ereader news, I do really like the new Kindle Voyage. I enjoy having the option of using page turn buttons as opposed to strictly touchscreen. The lighted screen is awesome too. I ended up giving my mom my regular Kindle with the cover that has a built in light and took her Kindle Keyboard as my backup. Now she can read in bed without disturbing my dad.

Posted by: DangerGirl and her 1.21 gigawatt Sanity Prod (tm) at January 11, 2015 11:28 AM (KuU4f)

178 I read 'American Caesar' after my wife's father came to visit us back in the 90's. My wife is Japanese and her father was of the WWII generation. He didn't fight in the war because of a leg injury that crippled him, but he lost two brothers.

Anyhow when he came to visit us in Virginia his big 'must see' item was the MacArthur museum in Norfolk. He thought that MacArthur was the right man in the right place in post war Japan. He told me that most of his generation felt that way. MacArthur was the only guy who could have steered Japan out of the old and into the modern success they are.

MacArthur, like Patton and Churchill, was an egotistical son of a bitch wonderful for the war but impossible during peacetime.

Posted by: Lokki at January 11, 2015 11:29 AM (a5F9g)

179 Unbroken.

Book - A+
Movie - B

Lara Croft is OK in her directing, very pat and predictable. Story is compelling, and that saves her. Generally tracks with book, which is her smartest decision. Both are worthwhile.

Posted by: sort of at January 11, 2015 11:29 AM (lt/w5)

180 "Chew the gum, ditch the cards."
-Posted by: --- at January 11, 2015 11:21 AM (MMC8r)

Fuck You, man.

I treat everyone here like family and a serious question gets treated like shit.

I know about the author. I know the stories. Fuck you.

These are books that my Mother painstakingly searched-for and paid good money for.

She's not long for this World and FUCK YOU.

Damnit, damnit, damnit.

I'm not of "the right mind" right now.

I've got to get Right With God before I type another word.

Posted by: ColdBeer1 (Slap) at January 11, 2015 11:31 AM (16bOT)

181 I'm re-reading "The Way of a Pilgrim" and "The Pilgrim'sWay continues by an anonymous19th century Russian pilgrim who travels around Russia stopping at various monasteries and shrines to learn about what it means to 'pray without ceasing" and who incorporates the Ancient Orthodox prayer, "Lord Jesus Christ, son of God, have mercy upon me a sinner" into his breathing and in rhythm to his heartbeat and describes how this simple prayer transforms his faith life and that of others.

Posted by: FenelonSpoke at January 11, 2015 11:33 AM (DXzRD)

182

eek

Posted by: artisanal 'ette at January 11, 2015 11:35 AM (IXrOn)

183 Greetings:

My father came to this country from the very southwest of Ireland in 1927, in time for the Great Depression and an couple of years touring the central Pacific. He initially lived on upper Manhattan's Edgecombe Avenue, not far from the Polo Grounds where New York's baseball Giants plied their trade.

Baseball became a significant part of my father's American assimilation. While I don't think that he ever actually played the came, he was an astute student of the game and its culture. So, when I became more than a gleam in his eye, baseball provided any number of analogies for how a man should lead a proper life.

His foundational analogy went something like this. Baseball is a lot like being a man. Manhood similarly exists between two foul lines. On the left, there's "to protect and provide" and on the right there's "the ability to tell yourself 'No!'" As long as you're between those two foul lines, you can consider yourself a man.

Posted by: 11B40 at January 11, 2015 11:36 AM (evgyj)

184 I have been reading Cities of Salt by Abdel Rahman Manif, took a break for obvious reasons, however the story is an interesting look at the effect of oil on the local bedouin population. The author was Saudi and was a Saudi and Iraqi exile with a Phd in oil. Will try to finish it up next week..

Posted by: FCF at January 11, 2015 11:37 AM (kejii)

185 Gratz to Vic for mentioning my latest book, which isn't *new*-new, but new to him. Y'all leave Vic alone. He moves at geologic time. (I hope to have a completely new book out by March, if my poor artist in Australia isn't roasted in a fire.)

BTW, if there are books you like but wince at the astronomical prices the publishers think are reasonable for backlist ebooks, check out eReaderIQ. It's a site that lets you set alerts for particular authors, and emails you if their books drop in price (you can also set a threshold, or an alert for a particular book). I scored a bunch of Georgette Heyer books yesterday for $1.99 each (now back to a mind-boggling $9.99. They were published in the 1940's, for heaven's sake!)

And for reading, finished and thoroughly enjoyed Connie Willis's Bellwether. Especially funny for a science type like me, or for anyone who has had to deal with multiple corporate acronym-apocalypses for Better Management, or well-meaning administrators who do not understand why you can't schedule scientific breakthroughs. While lacking in explosions it does have attack sheep. Recommended for Morons.

Posted by: Sabrina Chase at January 11, 2015 11:38 AM (2buaQ)

186

French Author Stops Promoting Novel Amid 'Charlie Hebdo' Manhunt

Michel Houellebecq Has Left Paris for Unknown Location, Agent Says

By THOMAS VARELA

PARIS---French author Michel Houellebecq has stopped promoting his controversial novel depicting a France led by a Muslim president, in the wake of the Charlie Hebdo attack, his agent's office said Friday.



wsj

Posted by: artisanal 'ette at January 11, 2015 11:38 AM (IXrOn)

187 . On the left, there's "to protect and provide" and on the right there's "the ability to tell yourself 'No!'" As long as you're between those two foul lines, you can consider yourself a man.
Posted by: 11B40

Hmmm, not bad. It also might explain why there are so few 3rd baseman in Cooperstown.

Posted by: fairweatherbill bucking the wind at January 11, 2015 11:39 AM (ljIUb)

188 I recently got The Gambler by Dosteyevsky. Piqued my interest after seeing the wahlberg flic of same name.

Posted by: fastfreefall at January 11, 2015 11:39 AM (yRhBf)

189 There is a book out there somewhere about post-WWI American intellectuals, and how this was the point at which they began to regard themselves as a separate class, superior to the common folk, and to have more in common with the European intelligentsia. They continue to plague us to this day.

I saw it linked in a Belmont Club comment once, and it sounded interesting. H.L. Mencken was mentioned as one of that group. He did seem to have a sort of sneering contempt for the rest of us bumpkins.

I tried to look for it on Amazon this morning, but it's hard to find a book when you don't know the author or title, and have only a vague idea of its contents.

Posted by: rickl at January 11, 2015 11:39 AM (sdi6R)

190 I came in late, has anyone else recommended 'See Dick and Jane"? They have a whole series of great books.
My wife got me the series from Amazon.

Posted by: Biden at January 11, 2015 11:40 AM (WNERA)

191 eek

Did you see a mouse? ;^)

Posted by: FenelonSpoke at January 11, 2015 11:41 AM (DXzRD)

192 Posted by: ColdBeer1 (Slap) at January 11, 2015 11:31 AM (16bOT)


Hang on here. You posted that you had some signed books, and you were wondering what to do with them, comparing them to baseball cards. Some other posters had a little fun with that.

But that's it. Just having fun. So ask the real question, do you want to hold on to them or sell them? And what is your best option?

I've always found the horde really great when you ask a question like that.

Posted by: HH at January 11, 2015 11:42 AM (Ce4DF)

193
Posted by: ColdBeer1 (Slap) (T) at January 11, 2015 10:46 AM (16bOT) --- Don't put them in the spokes of your bike?

Posted by: Baldy at January 11, 2015 11:42 AM (+35FH)

194 Tom Holland, "When I Questioned the Histor[icit]y of Muhammad"
http://tinyurl.com/qbuxzhx

Posted by: boulder terlit hobo at January 11, 2015 11:42 AM (AVEe1)

195 hooboy

Although Mr. Houellebecq has described "Submission" as "political science-fiction," it has ignited a nationwide controversy with accusations he is fueling mistrust and hatred toward Muslims.
...

In Mr. Houellebecq's account, French society peacefully accepts the new regime, where women are banned from the workplace and must wear the Islamic veil. On the bright side, he writes, economic prosperity is back after decades of record unemployment, and crime rates are brought back to a minimum.

..

Since its release Wednesday, the book---"Soumission" in French--has remained the No. 1 best seller on Amazon's French website.

...

French President François Hollande said earlier this week he would read the book but warned against what he called "this temptation of decadence and decline...this climate of fear."


wsj's life and culture section/books

Posted by: artisanal 'ette at January 11, 2015 11:43 AM (IXrOn)

196 Dorothy L. Sayers whose Wimsey mystery novels I always enjoyed. has a collection of essays on the Christian life and other subjects called "The Whimsical Christian" which I quite enjoyed-not only for the pun in the title but mostly for the thought provoking essays.

Posted by: FenelonSpoke at January 11, 2015 11:44 AM (DXzRD)

197 Just a plug for ABEBOOKS.COM, now owned by Amazon, I believe.

You can almost always find out of print books there.
Doing family history research, I discovered that someone had actually published a 38 page pamphlet addressing some of our family history, about sixty years ago.

I not only found a copy...but three copies listed at three different stores.

Posted by: Village Idiot's Apprentice at January 11, 2015 11:45 AM (nHuU1)

198 ColdBeer-If you haven't, I hope that you will go to the doctor. We're concerned that in your fall you might have hurt yourself more than you originally thought.

With prayers.
Fenelon

Posted by: FenelonSpoke at January 11, 2015 11:48 AM (DXzRD)

199

Novelist Robert Stone, Known for 'Dog Soldiers,' Dies at 77

NEW YORK -- Robert Stone, the award-winning novelist who spun out tales of seekers, frauds and other misbegotten American dreamers in such works as "A Flag for Sunrise" and "Dog Soldiers," died Saturday at age 77.

Stone died at his home in Florida, his literary agent, Neil Olson, told The Associated Press. The cause was chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.

Posted by: artisanal 'ette at January 11, 2015 11:48 AM (IXrOn)

200 Fen - you're an angel, you know that? Heed her, Beers.

Posted by: sort of at January 11, 2015 11:50 AM (lt/w5)

201 I would be more than happy to display Sen Fiendstein's head in front of my humble abode. Praise Allah PBUH

Posted by: Angry Activist in Afghanistan at January 11, 2015 11:51 AM (oadif)

202 14 Why were they embargoed?

Good question. The review article doesn't say.
Posted by: OregonMuse at January 11, 2015 09:29 AM (BB/Y7)
---------------
The reason behind it all has been embargoed of course.

Might I post a complement? I found this mornings book thread post to be singularly above the usual mark. It could stand alone as a short essay.

I recently read "PSmith" by Wodehouse wherein he takes a penny saver type paper in the gangs of New York era and turns it into a crusading weekly. The only problem is the hero calls everyone "comrade" which I suppose was hip at the time but annoyed me to no end. Otherwise a quick read.
I have "predestination" on pause right this very minute so had to skip over all the comments on that very rapidly. Whew! That was a close one.
I'm reading an old scifi novel by poul Anderson, "the boat of a million years" that I somehow missed back in the day. About immortals living amongst us. I believe Vic knew some of the people the characters were based on. Seems ok so far but a little slow starting. Not sure where it is going.
Also read a collection of BBC radio plays that honestly can't recall the title of. Some were good and some awful. But then it was after all the BBC.
Stay chill my droogies.

Posted by: New Phone at January 11, 2015 11:51 AM (gr+2X)

203 "France is not Houellebecq. It's not intolerance, hatred and fear. It's full of soft targets and ready victims."

Fixed.

Posted by: Null at January 11, 2015 11:52 AM (xjpRj)

204 You'all should read up on what that scrunt Fiendsteen is sayin' today about terrorists. Just don't torture them.

Posted by: torabora at January 11, 2015 11:52 AM (oadif)

205 Nood silly thread until the football thread goes up.

Posted by: Y-not at January 11, 2015 11:53 AM (9BRsg)

206 I know this isn't an open thread and I have to go out pretty soon, but I was also worried about Captain Cussword who was having medical concerns and then I didn't see posting for while. Someone said he got inadvertently banned for posting on an old thread? Has he popped up again? Prayers for the Captain too.

Posted by: FenelonSpoke at January 11, 2015 11:55 AM (DXzRD)

207 202 New phone

Thank you for your kind words.

Posted by: OregonMuse at January 11, 2015 11:56 AM (BB/Y7)

208 197 Just a plug for ABEBOOKS.COM, now owned by Amazon, I believe.

You can almost always find out of print books there.
Doing family history research, I discovered that someone had actually published a 38 page pamphlet addressing some of our family history, about sixty years ago.

I not only found a copy...but three copies listed at three different stores.

Posted by: Village Idiot's Apprentice at January 11, 2015 11:45 AM (nHuU1)



Seconded. A few years ago, I got interested in finding out-of-print books from the early years of the Space Age. I bought a number of them from Abebooks and Alibris.

I read the descriptions carefully, and usually avoid buying the cheapest or most expensive copy. I look for something somewhere in the middle. So far, I have never been disappointed buying used hardcovers online.

Posted by: rickl at January 11, 2015 11:56 AM (sdi6R)

209 And I really enjoy the Brother Cadfael mysteries. I think I have read them all. I don't know that I learned a lot of history bout the man character is so engaging and the writing so good that it doesn't matter. I do think Ellis Peters was up on her facts, though.

Posted by: FenelonSpoke at January 11, 2015 11:57 AM (DXzRD)

210 Posted by: New Phone at January 11, 2015 11:51 AM (gr+2X)

Interested in your opinion of "Predestination"

in a non-spoilers way, of course.


In case, other morons wish to see it.


Or read the story.

Posted by: naturalfake at January 11, 2015 11:58 AM (KBvAm)

211 Just a plug for ABEBOOKS.COM, now owned by Amazon, I believe.



Boooooooooo!!!

ABEBOOKs used to be my book go-to esp when Amazon prices were too high for a used book.

Amazon prices have been getting worse and worse.

Sad to hear, ABEBooks will now be contaminated by that.

To repeat....


BOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!

Posted by: naturalfake at January 11, 2015 12:01 PM (KBvAm)

212 I loved "The Fourth Protocol" and I remember reading "The Day of the Jackal" but it was such a long time ago that I don't remember it making much of an impression. Clearly a re-reading is in order.

But there was one book, along the lines of "The Fourth Protocol" that I absolutely loved. It wasn't a Forsyth and I don't remember who wrote it. I remember it was muslim nuclear terrorism and ended with a very chilling warning to Qaddafi (muslim threat at the time): Wheresoever you shall go, death shall surely follow. But I don't remember the book. Anyone have any ideas?

Posted by: Tonestaple at January 11, 2015 12:03 PM (mpwoP)

213 Oh boy, Malaise Falcon is on TCM!!

Posted by: Nip Sip at January 11, 2015 12:09 PM (0FSuD)

214 Oregon Muse


I am delighted that you are reading "Revolution From Rosinante". I read it in paperback in the early 1980s and I have never met anybody else who has read that trilogy. I have always been disappointed that he has not written more.

Posted by: Obnoxious A-Hole at January 11, 2015 12:12 PM (PD6iL)

215 Halfway through When Books Went to War, a history of the Armed Services paperbacks, as well as the nationwide book drive that took place to provide troops books during WW2. Really well done. The drive was promoted as a direct response to the Nazi book burnings. Interesting and little known piece of history. Enjoying it, especially because I own one of those paperback editions.

Posted by: Elfin at January 11, 2015 12:13 PM (S77wp)

216 Oh boy, Malaise Falcon is on TCM!!

Posted by: Nip Sip at January 11, 2015 12:09 PM (0FSuD)


"Malaise Falcon"?

The French noir?

I love that movie!


Especially, the last lines


Detective Henri St. Poutan: [picks up the falcon] Heavy. What ees eet?

St Jean Spade: Ze, uh, stuff zhat ennui is made of.

Posted by: naturalfake at January 11, 2015 12:13 PM (KBvAm)

217 Fenelon, I have that book too! It's sort of charming. I need to get back to reading it.

As for tactics, that makes me think of the movie Zulu. I love watching that movie.

My Chernow biographies have arrived, so will tackle Titan first. I think I'll but The Abolition of Man on my wish list.

And for the record, I spent most of yesterday in Portland's beautiful Multnomah County main library. I never thought I'd see the day when libraries looked like Greyhound bus stations. People with rolling suitcases washing off in the bathrooms, I won't comment on the tranny in the bathroom with me. (I'm sure he thinks he looks like a woman but he doesn't). I think allowing computers in the library was a mistake, as this has gotten worse since they put in free internet access. They had two county sheriffs outside to keep order.

Posted by: Notsothoreau at January 11, 2015 12:14 PM (Lqy/e)

Posted by: Nip Sip at January 11, 2015 12:16 PM (0FSuD)

219 Oh boy, Malaise Falcon is on TCM!!

Jimmy Carter as Sam Spade?

Oy.

Posted by: --- at January 11, 2015 12:16 PM (MMC8r)

220 @128?

Maltese Falcon is on TCM!!

Posted by: Nip Sip at January 11, 2015 12:16 PM (0FSuD)

221 Saw the thread title and had to comment - The Abolition of Man / men without chests is my favorite CS Lewis text, and in terms of its impact on my thinking, probably the most significant. It would seem pointless to search for truth without belief in objective truth.

Posted by: Lewisian at January 11, 2015 12:18 PM (bpfuQ)

222 Sam!


Of course, having seen it twenty times, the mystery is just not there. It doesn't repeat as well as Casablanca or Dark Passage.

Posted by: Nip Sip at January 11, 2015 12:18 PM (0FSuD)

223 "199




Novelist Robert Stone, Known for 'Dog Soldiers,' Dies at 77



NEW YORK -- Robert Stone, the award-winning novelist who spun out
tales of seekers, frauds and other misbegotten American dreamers in such
works as "A Flag for Sunrise" and "Dog Soldiers," died Saturday at age
77.



Stone died at his home in Florida, his literary agent, Neil Olson,
told The Associated Press. The cause was chronic obstructive pulmonary
disease.

Posted by: artisanal 'ette at January 11, 2015 11:48 AM (IXrOn)"

"Dog Soldiers" was an excellent book make into an OK movie staring Nick Nolte. Michael Moriarity was also in the movie doing, as ever, an impeccable job.

I am saddend to see that Stone died.

Posted by: Obnoxious A-Hole at January 11, 2015 12:26 PM (PD6iL)

224 ::: downloads audiobook of Day of the Jackal from the LA Public Library::::

Posted by: baldilocks at January 11, 2015 12:35 PM (GE9Jc)

225 {{{OM}}}

Posted by: baldilocks at January 11, 2015 12:36 PM (GE9Jc)

226 27, I was hoping for an Amazon gift card, but instead I received a $50 BarnesNoble gift card for Christmas, and even though I have 3 stores literally within 10 miles of my home, I ordered from their web site because the prices were about 30% cheaper. I ordered 3 books later that afternoon--while everybody else was watching TV and digesting the huge meal--and they were shipped the following AM and I got them on Saturday. Great service, record time.And much better than my experiences with Amazon.

Posted by: JoeF. at January 11, 2015 12:39 PM (75D7d)

227 Robert Stone was a probably something of a commie, but he was a decent writer, and unlike the feminist drivel that was in vogue for much of his career, his books can be enjoyed by manly men....

Posted by: JoeF. at January 11, 2015 12:42 PM (75D7d)

228 Well the iPad is smoking today. So many recommendations so many downloads. I just realized that the first thing I do on Sunday morning is check this thread rather than go for that 1st cup of coffee. Best book club ever.

Posted by: Tuna at January 11, 2015 12:44 PM (JSovD)

229 I 'm surprised that Holland admitted he will read " Submission"--and being French, he probably will--but doesn't it put pressure on him to come out against it lest he be accused of Islamophobia?

Posted by: JoeF. at January 11, 2015 12:46 PM (75D7d)

230 Ron Mitchell's book "Warped" is an amazing read about time travel.....you can find it on amazon in hardback or for your kindle. He is a fellow moron and lifestyle group member.

Posted by: m.i.t. at January 11, 2015 12:53 PM (u8GsB)

231 Pants, kilts, tutus...Hey! Is that guy over there wearing culottes?!

Posted by: richard mcenroe at January 11, 2015 01:02 PM (XO6WW)

232 Guy writes "submission" in France and has to run for his life.

Tom Kratman writes "Caliphate" over here...crickets.

Posted by: richard mcenroe at January 11, 2015 01:03 PM (XO6WW)

233 189
There is a book out there somewhere about post-WWI American
intellectuals, and how this was the point at which they began to regard
themselves as a separate class, superior to the common folk, and to have
more in common with the European intelligentsia. They continue to
plague us to this day.



I saw it linked in a Belmont Club comment once, and it sounded
interesting. H.L. Mencken was mentioned as one of that group. He did
seem to have a sort of sneering contempt for the rest of us bumpkins.



I tried to look for it on Amazon this morning, but it's hard to find
a book when you don't know the author or title, and have only a vague
idea of its contents.

Posted by: rickl


Probably too late, but on the off chance you're still reading, this sounds like Fred Siegel's "The Revolt Against the Masses: How Liberalism Has Undermined the Middle Class". Good book.

Posted by: pep at January 11, 2015 01:10 PM (4nR9/)

234 But they are very, very sane.


Posted by: CharlieBrown'sDildo at January 11, 2015 09:45 AM (Zu3d9)


Sane followers of an insane belief system. Like commies. Like Nazis.

Posted by: Alberta Oil Peon at January 11, 2015 01:11 PM (4k1aC)

235 Number of people in hiding for writing anti-Christian books?

Posted by: --- at January 11, 2015 01:21 PM (MMC8r)

236 Found it, in case anyone is interested, or still here: The Fifth Horseman by Larry Collins and Dominique LaPierre.

http://tinyurl.com/msnuyn7

Posted by: Tonestaple at January 11, 2015 01:22 PM (mpwoP)

237 Presently reading Singapore: The Battle that Changed the World by Janes Leasor. Doubleday and Company, 1968.

"Of all imperial peoples the British in the British Isles knew least about their possessions. They had controlled far countries for so long that the word 'empire' became a music-hall joke among the mass of people; something to spoken of with patronage or shame among the left-wing intelligentsia, or those who would like to be so regarded."
- pg. 11

Posted by: Anna Puma (+SmuD) at January 11, 2015 01:22 PM (RvIUX)

238 The Malaise Falcon, it can do the Kessel Runs in under three feet.

Posted by: Anna Puma (+SmuD) at January 11, 2015 01:28 PM (RvIUX)

239 233
Probably too late, but on the off chance you're still reading, this sounds like Fred Siegel's "The Revolt Against the Masses: How Liberalism Has Undermined the Middle Class". Good book.
Posted by: pep at January 11, 2015 01:10 PM (4nR9/)


I just read the description and reviews at Amazon, and that might very well be it. Thanks!

Posted by: rickl at January 11, 2015 01:30 PM (sdi6R)

240 A major revelation was the hideous discovery, when fire companies from neighboring counties and states arrived, that hosepipes and hydrant couplings weren't standardized.
------------
It is still that way where I live. The engines have to carry two adapters, to accommodate three different hydrant sizes/threads.

Posted by: Mike Hammer, etc., etc. at January 11, 2015 01:45 PM (l1zOH)

241 Just finished C.F. McGlashan's History of the Donner Party, A Tragedy of the Sierra

Because I needed to be reminded that: *it's not That Bad* -- at least, not yet.

(Downloaded from Gutenberg, I probably saw it on one or another Book Thread.)

Thanks, OregonMuse! I really enjoy these threads.

Posted by: JeanQ Flyover at January 11, 2015 01:59 PM (rhjQp)

242 C.S. Lewis's That Hideous Strength (fiction) illustrates the manipulation of people based on their foibles. Also has some head chopping. See Ciaphas Cain books for more fictional examples of manipulation. They have head chopping too. Common British literature plot device?

Posted by: Huggy at January 11, 2015 02:26 PM (PGh+Q)

243 #64

The movie Starship Troopers wasn't actually based on the book. The rights to use the title were acquired well after production had started. No doubt Verhoeven was familiar with the book but the title was more the studio's decision than his.

There have been other works adapted, many with his active participation:
http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0374423/?ref_=nv_sr_1

While it made a good MST3K, Project Moonbase had some interesting stuff. For instance, the cordless phones that were so alien to everyone involved that nobody walks around with the phones as most of us are accustomed to doing today. Also, there is a female POTUS, pretty wild for 1953.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vbHywdH2Z7Y

Posted by: Epobirs at January 11, 2015 02:30 PM (IdCqF)

244 First post. First question: where's the share button so I can spread the word around?

Posted by: Falconer at January 11, 2015 02:32 PM (ODO3p)

245 Share button? What decade do you think this site is living in? Around these parts, HTML 4 is still that whizzy new stuff the kids are all excited about.

Posted by: Epobirs at January 11, 2015 02:38 PM (IdCqF)

246 Share button? Around here, we lovingly handcraft our links with toothpicks and Elmer's Glue.

Posted by: rickl at January 11, 2015 02:49 PM (sdi6R)

247 Well done, well done. Yip yip.

Posted by: Kirk at January 11, 2015 03:26 PM (GBnWt)

248 Well finished book 1 of the WOT series. Moving on to book 2.

Posted by: Vic at January 11, 2015 03:45 PM (wlDny)

249 Got "Punch Your Inner Hippie" by Frank J. Fleming for my birthday. It's incredibly silly yet strangely useful.

I credit C.S. Lewis' "The Screwtape Letters" for putting my life on the right track. I read it in high school and consciously tried to do those things that the "mentor" devil advised against. It fixed in my mind the idea that men and women are different so firmly that even the radfems couldn't unseat it. Without that I probably would have ended up a crazy single hoarder.

Posted by: gingeroni at January 11, 2015 04:20 PM (baKy9)

250
Since January 2015 is the centenary of the start of Shackleton's ordeal and triumph: the "Endurance" became trapped in the ice of the Weddell Sea on Janaury 19, 1915. To mark the anniversary, I've been re-reading books about Shackleton:

"Endurance", by Alfred Lansing. Published in 1959, and, to my mind, the best book about the expedition. Lansing was able to interview surviving members of the expedition.

"South," by Ernest Shackleton. Shackleton's account of the trek across South Georgia, and of the "fourth man" experience that he had, is worth the price of the book. Many editions are illustrated with Frank Hurley's magnificent photographs.

"Endurance," by Frank Worsley. Worsley was captain of the "Endurance", and the navigator who guided the "James Caird" across the south polar sea from Elephant Island to South Georgia. The book is his personal account of the expedition and voyage, and the crossing of South Georgia; and a fine portrait of Shackleton himself.

As the Arctic explorer Sir Raymond Priestly said, "For scientific discovery, give me Scott; for speed and efficiency of travel, give me Amundsen; but when disaster strikes and all hope is gone, get down on your knees and pray for Shackleton."

Posted by: Brown Line at January 11, 2015 05:56 PM (a5bF3)

251 "I have never seen a Heinlein movie that they did not absolutely ruin the book."

Vic, have a look at "Destination: Moon". Heinlein wrote the screenplay (his only one), and his story comes across loud and clear.

Posted by: Brown Line at January 11, 2015 05:59 PM (a5bF3)

252 Alexis Gilliland just stopped writing after producing that Rosinante trilogy and another half-great military fantasy trilogy (Wisenbeak, The Shadow Shaia, Lord of the Troll-Bats). The fantasy trilogy's first two books are honestly great - kind of like a more amiable Turtledove sort of deal, without all the sloppy I-can-crib-from-more-obscure-history-than-you shortcuts that ruined Harry Turtledove in the long run - but then the third book turns into something that might have been scripted by Hajime Yatate for the back half of a tragically semi-goofy Oughts-era Sunrise mecha/pokegirl animated faceplant.

Posted by: Mitch H. at January 11, 2015 06:12 PM (5+7m4)

253 The SDECE is France's domestic intelligence agency. Think of MI-5 on steroids without the politically correct hamstringing.

Posted by: southcentralpa at January 11, 2015 07:00 PM (7YZbv)

254 Just finished reading Carter Beats the Devil, Glen David Gold. And it was fantastic! I rarely read fiction, just can't get into it, but this book was one I waited for a long time. It borders on light reading, but the characters leap off the page.

From Publishers Weekly

"Set against the backdrop of early 20th-century San Francisco
during the heyday of such legendary illusionists and escape artists as
Harry Houdini, this thoroughly entertaining debut by an amateur magician
with an M.F.A. in creative writing is a fanciful pastiche of history,
fantasy and romance. The plot turns around the questionable
circumstances surrounding scandal-beleaguered President Warren Harding's
unexpected death on August 2, 1923, shortly after appearing on stage
with the magician Carter the Great in San Francisco."

Everyone from Houdini to the Marx Brothers appear. Believe me you will be reading this with a smile on your face.

Posted by: RGallegos at January 11, 2015 10:03 PM (AVODN)

255 I did not know that about Cromwell's head!

I do know his body had an interesting history. Buried in Westminster Abbey, the Royalists later took him out and ritually executed him, hence his head being here and there. (There is a wonderfully dry plaque now in the Abbey to the effect that Cromwell WAS buried there.)

I found some more interesting history of his body and head here:
http://www.theguardian.com/uk/2009/aug/02/cromwell-grave-westminster-abbey

Posted by: WannabeAnglican at January 12, 2015 08:13 AM (vFmT2)

256 189 There is a book out there somewhere about post-WWI American intellectuals, and how this was the point at which they began to regard themselves as a separate class, superior to the common folk, and to have more in common with the European intelligentsia. They continue to plague us to this day.

I think you're looking for Fred Siegel's book, "The Revolt Against the Masses."

Posted by: baldur5 at January 12, 2015 02:10 PM (3Hytc)

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