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shuke

Whatcha readin now? (book, books, reading, read)

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I haven't updated here in awhile...

Continuing on with the Presidents, I read President Carter: The White House Years by Stuart Eizenstat.  The author was Carter's domestic policy advisor, and a colleague of mine at my old law firm. I feel like the book could have been slimmed down a bit (text runs around 900 pages), but solid insight into the Carter administration.  Maybe a bit too much of a defense at times, but it had some balance and tries to put some of his decisions in perspective.  Because the focus was on the White House years, it does not dive into post-Presidency, which I'd still like to read more about.

I read HW Brands' book on Reagan, and Jon Meachem's book on George HW Bush when those books came out, and feel covered on those Presidents.  So, Clinton is up next.  

I also read Matthew Desmond's Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the City.  He immersed himself in some of Milwaukee's poorest neighborhoods to understand the plight of poverty and the suffering caused by evictions.  Powerful book with striking stories.  It received a lot of praise when it came out and I can see why.

Novel-wise, just started John Boyne's A Ladder to the Sky.  Review refer to it as a bit dark and funny, a combination that frequently works for me.  About a wannabe author who lacks originality in his stories, so he tries to ingratiate himself with people who have stories and steals them for his novels.

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Currently plowing through the Gray Man series.  Also have the latest Will Robie book from the library.  

I requested to join the FBG group today on GoodReads.  

I tend to oscilate between reading and playing video games.  Currently in a big reading streak, already 4 books down this year.  Shelter In Place and The Good Daughter have been my favorite this year so far.  Gray Man series is also excellent.

 

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On 7/23/2017 at 3:05 PM, facook said:

Finished Cronin's The Passage Trilogy.  Glad I read it.  I don't know that the second and third books fulfilled the promise shown by The Passage, but a very good trilogy.  I'd probably give The Passage 4.5 stars as a novel, and the trilogy 3.5.

Not looking forward to watching and getting annoyed at the Zach Morris version tonight.

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36 minutes ago, Lehigh98 said:

Not looking forward to watching and getting annoyed at the Zach Morris version tonight.

Should have been an HBO series.  Could have been the next, better Walking Dead.

Fox absolutely mutilated Wayward Pines, which could have been excellent too but was atrocious.

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45 minutes ago, Lehigh98 said:

Not looking forward to watching and getting annoyed at the Zach Morris version tonight.

Read the books twice; not sure I want to watch the series at all.  The preview looked terrible.

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Just finished Stephen King's The Outsider.  Overwhelming meh.  Interesting concept but the plot took forever to develop.  I really had thought King had reverted to his better storytelling days after I read Dr. Sleep, but this just bored me.

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3 minutes ago, shuke said:

Just finished Stephen King's The Outsider.  Overwhelming meh.  Interesting concept but the plot took forever to develop.  I really had thought King had reverted to his better storytelling days after I read Dr. Sleep, but this just bored me.

When I first started reading this thread (which was one or two versions/upgrades ago) you had recommended Burnt Offerings by Robert Marasco as one of your favorite horror novels.   I tend to enjoy the same kind of horror that you do, and so I have kept my eyes open in used bookstores and thrift stores over the years but could never find it and it was out of print online.  Recently I stumbled across it online, and they are reprinting it.  I was able to suggest our library order it which they did and I got to read it.

Good book.  Incredibly strange and very sad in parts, but I liked it.  So thanks.

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5 hours ago, Don Quixote said:

I also read Matthew Desmond's Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the City.  He immersed himself in some of Milwaukee's poorest neighborhoods to understand the plight of poverty and the suffering caused by evictions.  Powerful book with striking stories.  It received a lot of praise when it came out and I can see why.

Evicted is a great book.  ...and that's coming from an avid reader that avoids almost all non-fiction.  Very well done.

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5 hours ago, shuke said:

Just finished Stephen King's The Outsider.  Overwhelming meh.  Interesting concept but the plot took forever to develop.  I really had thought King had reverted to his better storytelling days after I read Dr. Sleep, but this just bored me.

That is interesting. I to loved Dr Sleep but as far as I can tell we are in the minority on that one.

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9 hours ago, facook said:

When I first started reading this thread (which was one or two versions/upgrades ago) you had recommended Burnt Offerings by Robert Marasco as one of your favorite horror novels.   I tend to enjoy the same kind of horror that you do, and so I have kept my eyes open in used bookstores and thrift stores over the years but could never find it and it was out of print online.  Recently I stumbled across it online, and they are reprinting it.  I was able to suggest our library order it which they did and I got to read it.

Good book.  Incredibly strange and very sad in parts, but I liked it.  So thanks.

 Glad you liked it.  You could have just asked me to borrow it.

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"Kill Anything That Moves" - Nick Turse.

Vietnam told by a number of grunts that were on the ground.  About a third of the way through it.  Don't know I can finish it - it's very depressing but revealing.  We always know that war is brutal, but reading about this kind of stuff is just gut and heart-wrenching.  

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2019 Books Read:

Jurassic Park - Michael Chricton (reading)

Will update as I go.

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7 hours ago, cap'n grunge said:

2019 Books Read:

Jurassic Park - Michael Chricton (reading)

Will update as I go.

We have a new book thread we are using now. 

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6 minutes ago, cap'n grunge said:

The one @shuke told me to vacate? 🙃

Yeah, I got your back

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3 minutes ago, KarmaPolice said:

:lol:

Just because @shuke started this book thread in the Carter administration, doesn't mean we have can't start a new and more progressive book thread. A book thread by the people and for the people. 

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Also I was just messing with Cap'n

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On 1/14/2019 at 8:50 AM, Don Quixote said:

Novel-wise, just started John Boyne's A Ladder to the Sky.  Review refer to it as a bit dark and funny, a combination that frequently works for me.  About a wannabe author who lacks originality in his stories, so he tries to ingratiate himself with people who have stories and steals them for his novels.

  Finished "A Ladder to the Sky."  It was definitely dark and funny.  A bit contrived, but still hard to put down.  Not quite a book that I'd put at the top of my list for favorites from 2018, but enjoyable enough.

Started An American Marriage by Tayari Jones last night.  Bought it when it was a Kindle daily deal last week.  

Also bought the new translation of The Odyssey by Emily Wilson.  Heading out of town this weekend and planning to take that one with me.

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On 1/14/2019 at 1:47 PM, shuke said:

Just finished Stephen King's The Outsider.  Overwhelming meh.  Interesting concept but the plot took forever to develop.  I really had thought King had reverted to his better storytelling days after I read Dr. Sleep, but this just bored me.

I liked the first half better than the second.

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On 1/16/2019 at 9:27 PM, cap'n grunge said:

2019 Books Read:

Jurassic Park - Michael Chricton

City of Endless Night - Douglas Preston & Lincoln Child (current read)

Will update as I go.

 

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Will be starting TEXAS TOUGH in the morning.  This is the history of the Texas penal system.

Review

In the prison business, all roads lead to Texas. A pioneer in criminal justice severity―from assembly-line executions to supermax isolation, from mandatory sentencing to prison privatization―Texas is the most locked-down state in the most incarcerated country in the world. Texas Tough, a sweeping history of American imprisonment from the days of slavery to the present, explains how a plantation-based penal system once dismissed as barbaric became a template for the nation.

 

Edited by ZenoRazon

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On 1/14/2019 at 11:46 AM, Lehigh98 said:

Not looking forward to watching and getting annoyed at the Zach Morris version tonight.

I thought the first two episodes were good...

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Outlander.  it finished second on  PBS favorite book contest so I gave it a try.  The two romantic leads were  too good to be true and boring. it's too bad because the book was well written and full of interesting characters. Zero chance i continue with the series.

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Fields of Fire by James Webb.  Vietnam novel based on his Vietnam War experience.  Really really good so far.

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2019 Books Read:

Jurassic Park - Michael Chricton

City of Endless Night - Douglas Preston & Lincoln Child

Now reading:

Verses for the Dead - Douglas Preston & Lincoln Child

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I just finished Borne by Jeff Vandermeer, the guy who wrote Annihilation and the rest of the Southern Reach series. I enjoyed this much more. It's tighter and easier for my pea brain to keep up with.

He's got a short story - Strange Bird - set in the same universe which I'll knock out next before moving onto Ben Winter's next novel.

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Finished up Lonesome Dove.  Augustus McRae officially inducted into my Pantheon of greatest literary characters.

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13 hours ago, MindCrime said:

Just started “The Shining” in my quest to read all major King novels. 

Yeah, this is in my queue. 

 

I pretty much only do iBooks now and started the Stand uncut version (apparently 400 extra pages?). Anyway, on 1100 out of 1800 or so digital pages right now.  I’m completely engrossed. When finished, I’ll have to go back and see what was added. There was one particularly long chapter with Trashcan Man that had a lot of weird side stories and I found out that had originally been cut. That’s been about the only 30 pages so far where I was reading as quickly as possible to get past, but in retrospect it was ok. 

 

After that, 11.22.63 is already bought (loved the miniseries), then maybe The Shining after. 

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27 minutes ago, bigmarc27 said:

Yeah, this is in my queue. 

 

I pretty much only do iBooks now and started the Stand uncut version (apparently 400 extra pages?). Anyway, on 1100 out of 1800 or so digital pages right now.  I’m completely engrossed. When finished, I’ll have to go back and see what was added. There was one particularly long chapter with Trashcan Man that had a lot of weird side stories and I found out that had originally been cut. That’s been about the only 30 pages so far where I was reading as quickly as possible to get past, but in retrospect it was ok. 

 

After that, 11.22.63 is already bought (loved the miniseries), then maybe The Shining after. 

All of those are great books. You are going to love 11.22.63, I did like the series but boy they left stuff out.

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On 2/21/2019 at 7:25 AM, bigmarc27 said:

Yeah, this is in my queue. 

 

I pretty much only do iBooks now and started the Stand uncut version (apparently 400 extra pages?). Anyway, on 1100 out of 1800 or so digital pages right now.  I’m completely engrossed. When finished, I’ll have to go back and see what was added. There was one particularly long chapter with Trashcan Man that had a lot of weird side stories and I found out that had originally been cut. That’s been about the only 30 pages so far where I was reading as quickly as possible to get past, but in retrospect it was ok. 

 

After that, 11.22.63 is already bought (loved the miniseries), then maybe The Shining after. 

Finished up The Stand uncut version. Great read - love the characters. It’s interesting that even though it was (overly) long, I was still interested in the characters and what they were doing. I cared way more about that than the plot itself. I can see why some didn’t care for the ending. It was fine, I didn’t mind it but it did feel oddly rushed considering how long the book was. 

Also best character is easily Kojak. 

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Reading The Royal Road To Romance, the first book of Richard Halliburton. Have already read his second, The Glorious Adventure. Will likely read all of his travel books.

He was a traveling adventurer who wrote about them along with starring in a movie about some of his travels. He died at sea, age 39 attempting to sail across the Pacific from Hong Kong to San Francisco.

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Just finished Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee. It's not a small book, but it's really a series of related stories and not something that needs to be read in a continuous start to finish mode. A North American version of bad things that people have done to other people throughout history.

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On 1/23/2019 at 9:37 AM, Don Quixote said:

Started An American Marriage by Tayari Jones last night.  Bought it when it was a Kindle daily deal last week.  

Also bought the new translation of The Odyssey by Emily Wilson.  Heading out of town this weekend and planning to take that one with me.

The new translation of "The Odyssey" was great.  Read pretty fresh and modern, and a very accessible read.  The iambic pentameter gives it a good beat.  If The Odyssey is a read that anyone been meaning to get into, it's a version worth checking out.

Also continuing my way through biographies of the Presidents. Read the book on Bill Clinton from the American President Series.  There's not much out there that I thought was too worthy for Clinton. I think with a lot of these most recent Presidents, I'll need to head back to them as more documents get released.  I'm planning to read Jean Edward Smith's Bush on W next.  Feel like I'm in the homestretch.

I'm still working my way through "An American Marriage" due to the other reads.  It may be taking me awhile because it's not capturing me that much.

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I'm traveling for work and want to buy a book to read on the airplane.  Any Dragonlance or similar types of books you would recommend?  Any other recommendations for books I can find at the airport bookstore?  Spy novels or something like that too.

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16 minutes ago, RC94 said:

I'm traveling for work and want to buy a book to read on the airplane.  Any Dragonlance or similar types of books you would recommend?  Any other recommendations for books I can find at the airport bookstore?  Spy novels or something like that too.

Someone above mention Storm Front by Jim Butcher. It's the first in a series, but is self-contained. It's short, has a lot of fantasy elements, and is also a detective novel. 

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I started Blood Meridian over the weekend.  I've never read any Cornac McCarthy, and felt like a hole in my reading.  This is some dark stuff.

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For all of you "The Stand" fans I highly recommend Robert R McCammon's "Swan Song", to me it was equally entertaining.

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Just finished the book about Theranos and Elizabeth Holmes, Bad Blood.  Fascinating read, moreso because I'm in the healthcare IT/tech space.

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Free  Collapsing Empire by John Scalzi is free in digital format if you sign up or have already signed up for Tor's newsletter. ends mar16.

 

Edited by Barry
Spell
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