Just finishing up Where's My Space Age?: The rise and fall of futuristic design by Sean Topham
I originally thought this would be about all those great things that were promised to us back when, i.e. flying cars, jetpacks, self-cleaning houses, self-cooking kitchens, etc, that we were supposed to have by 1985. It's more about inflatable pod-houses and mod clothing styles and furniture of the 60's & early 70's. Still, an interesting read.
quote:
Originally posted by steve8:
Just finished Straight Man by Richard Russo


Richard Russo is awesome -- I read this as soon as I finished Empire Falls.

My wife gives me a hard time about my reading habits, because I am usually reading about five books at once. Right now I'm reading

1) "Crisis" by Robin Cook (good story, but this guy can't write dialogue worth a damn)
2) "The Island of the Day Before" by Umberto Eco (I've started this book three times over the years and never finished it).
3) "Memoirs of Fighting Captain" (about Admiral Lord Cochrane - the real man upon whom Patrick O'Brian based Jack Aubrey)
4) "Rumpole" by John Mortimer (the Folio Society's Edition)
5) "Bee Season" by Myla Goldberg (I keep this in my car for lunchtime reading)
6) "Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell" by Susanna Clarke (fascinating reading -- a must for anyone who has read C.S. Lewis, Tolkien, etc.)
7) "1776" by David McCullough (another "car" book in case I want nonfiction during lunch).

So that's the list -- I honestly have these seven books bookmarked and resting in various rooms in the house. Of course because of my reading habits, it usually takes me about three months to finish a book.
toetag -

"Mayella" and "chiffarobe". I'm sorry, but I couldn't let it go....

Will be starting Romeo and Juliet and 1984 next week.

Ross Bernstein's "The Code: The Unwritten Rules of Fighting and Retaliation in the NHL." was delivered yesterday. Will start it tonight....
Golf&Pinot, what do you think of Bee Season? I read it a couple of years ago, and while it seemed promising, I didn't enjoy the side plot about the brother and I just really didn't come away loving the story.

Altaholic, I liked Running with Scissors and actually didn't hate the movie version. I prefer Dry by Burroughs and would recommend it.
quote:
Originally posted by Een:
I prefer Dry by Burroughs and would recommend it.

Een,
I’ll need to check Dry out from the library when I’m done with Running with Scissors. Thanks for the recommendation. As for the movie, I might rent it but I tend to watch the movies of books that I probably will not read because I’m usually disappointed with the movie if I’ve read the book. BTW, if you enjoy Augusten Burroughs you may want to read some books by David Sedaris, a writer that is also playfully dark at times.
Death in the Afternoon -- Ernest Hemingway.


quote:
Originally posted by Seaquam:
quote:
Originally posted by nopat:

I'm hooked on "Guns, Germs, and Steel" by Jared Diamond. I'll give him credit at least for being as ambitious to explain human development in its completeness. Great perspective on how we came to be who we are as a [global] society. A welcoming change from all the PC-Ivory Tower theories that abound.


Really enjoyed that a couple of years ago. Thought-provoking. Gave me a lot of insight as to how Europe achieved its dominance.


There's been a lot of academic criticism of J. Diamond for what critics argue is a simplistic view of the world. The gist of it is that to deny cultural differences in the rise of Europe such as the rule of law, capitalism and the concept of democracy and republicanisms is to mislead in explaining its dominance.

In that sense, nopat, the critics are attacking GG&S as being too PC in that Diamond implies that Europe was lucky in achieving its dominance. The critics argue that it wasn't luck at all, but culture.

Interesting debate...
Just about to finish A Bend In The River by V.S. Naipaul.

Next up might be Parade's End by Ford Maddox Ford. Not sure.

I'm reading through the Modern Library Top 100 English Language Novels of the 20th Century list... YES - Another top 100 list people can argue about endlessly. Sixty-three down so far. Good stuff.
Bookwise: I finished "Champagne" by the Klastrups over New Years as I was in transit. The same authors also wrote "Wine and War". Both books are good reads for wine geeks.

Currently reading the Oxford Composer Guide to J.S. Bach. The great thing about it is that it's compiled like an encyclopedia. If you're tired, you can just read one short entry and go to sleep.

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