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“Unfollow: A Memoir of Loving and Leaving the Westboro Baptist Church” by Megan Phelps-Roper. This book is OK, mostly because I’m interested in the subject matter. The author indicates that this book was originally meant to be an essay that led to a book instead. Frankly, it should’ve been a 30 page essay. The first 271 pages should’ve been condensed down into a summary of the tactics used by the Westboro Baptist Church to inculcate their members and ostracize them should they eventually leave. Boil that down to 15 pages and tack on the final 15 pages of the book where the money quotes are and you have a good, solid 30 page essay. The rest between is just repetition, gradual doubt and overblown histrionics of weeping and acid reflux from more hysterical weeping. The first 20-30 times were enough to make the point.

Halfway through One Day  by Gene Weingarten.  

Interesting concept.  The author, the only two time Pulitzer winner ever for short feature writing, is a better writer in long form, although I love his short stuff including his weekly contributions to the Washington Post Sunday Magazine.

Weingarten and his editor had lunch at the Old Ebbit Grill one day, and asked three random diners to pick a month, a day and a year out of a hat.  The selected day was Sunday, December 28th, 1986.  Weingarten then began a long process of researching the day, and events that happened on it.  The vignettes that he came up with for this "ordinary day," are far from ordinary.  If the rest of the book sucks, I'd still recommend it.  Somehow, I'm sure that the rest of the book won't suck.

If you're looking for a good read, check out the two articles he won Pulitzers for:

Pearls Before Breakfast

and

Fatal Distraction

PH

Last edited by purplehaze
billhike posted:
purplehaze posted:
purplehaze posted:

Three quarters of the way through Educated,  by Tara Westover.  Pretty amazing story so far.  A young woman, raised in isolation in a family of LDS doomsday preppers goes on to college and beyond.  I'll post a final comment when I finish, but so far... recommended.

PH

Finally finished this one up.  Crazy story.  If it was fiction, it'd never have sold.  Good read.

PH

Thanks for mentioning this. My library has some E-copies and I placed a hold. It sounds fascinating.

Just finished this. An excellent read. Whack job family that she has.

For me the great thing about The Devil in the White City was all the information on the important turn of the century architects who made Chicago the center for the best "modern" architecture in the US. I especially liked the information on Daniel Burnham and John Wellborn Root. Graceland Cemetery, near Wrigley Field, is the resting place for both them and other major Chicago architects, but also many of their clients mentioned in the book as well. I will be in Chicago at the end of May for anyone who'd like a hard-core exploration of the architecture of Chicago.

The Old Man posted:

For me the great thing about The Devil in the White City was all the information on the important turn of the century architects who made Chicago the center for the best "modern" architecture in the US. I especially liked the information on Daniel Burnham and John Wellborn Root. Graceland Cemetery, near Wrigley Field, is the resting place for both them and other major Chicago architects, but also many of their clients mentioned in the book as well. I will be in Chicago at the end of May for anyone who'd like a hard-core exploration of the architecture of Chicago.

Here are a couple coffee table books I have that someone interested in turn of the last century Chicago architecture might like. At least I find them interesting. 

Chicago at the Turn of the Century in Photographs by Larry A. Viskochil

Lost Chicago by David Lowe 

J3

Agatha Christie is such a pleasant read during these times. Her books just go down easy and are often full of exotic detail draw from Christie's own amazing life. She wrote from 1920 until her death in 1975. The Murder of Roger Ackroyd from 1926 is deservedly one of her most famous. And of course for anyone who hasn't read it, you have quite a treat in store for you.

thelostverse posted:
sunnylea57 posted:
billhike posted:
jcubed posted:
The Devil in the White City: Murder, Magic, and Madness at the Fair That Changed America
J3

It’s about time I give this a read - just downloaded the e-book from my local library. My wife works in a tax accounting office so I’m going to have a little more “me time” for the next 8 weeks. 

LOVE this book.

+1

+2

Just downloadedThe Splendid and the Vile.  A book about Churchill's first year as PM at the onset of WWII.  A story of leadership and work ethic.  Wish we had either in our "PM". 

PH

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