Last Book Read

145679

Comments

  • mrb123
    mrb123 Posts: 4,608
    Shuggie Bain.
    Brutal, heartbreaking, beautiful. One of the best things I've read in a long time.
  • briantrumpet
    briantrumpet Posts: 17,828
    edited April 2022
    The collection of Richard Feynman's letters. https://www.amazon.com/Dont-You-Have-Time-Think/dp/0141021136 A fascinating insight into someone who obviously knew he was both very clever, but also how little he knew. I still find his way of thinking inspiring.
  • First.Aspect
    First.Aspect Posts: 14,615
    Jesus this thread is too highbrow for me.

    Guidelines for Examination at the European Patent Office.
  • briantrumpet
    briantrumpet Posts: 17,828

    Jesus this thread is too highbrow for me.

    Guidelines for Examination at the European Patent Office.


    Any good plot twists?
  • First.Aspect
    First.Aspect Posts: 14,615

    Jesus this thread is too highbrow for me.

    Guidelines for Examination at the European Patent Office.


    Any good plot twists?
    It's open to interpretation.
  • dennisn
    dennisn Posts: 10,601
    Just finished "Lord Jim" by Joseph Conrad. Whew, what a tough read. I remember reading his "Nostromo" some years back and enjoyed it very much. Lord Jim I can only describe as rugged reading. Good story though.
  • dabber
    dabber Posts: 1,926
    Currently reading..... Eleanor of Aquitaine by Marion Meade
    Last year stayed at the Grand Hotel de l’Abbaye in Beaugency which is attached to the abbey where Eleanor and Louis VII annuled their marriage.
    A fascinating lady.
    “You may think that; I couldn’t possibly comment!”

    Wilier Cento Uno SR/Wilier Mortirolo/Specialized Roubaix Comp/Kona Hei Hei/Calibre Bossnut
  • monkimark
    monkimark Posts: 1,500

    The collection of Richard Feynman's letters. https://www.amazon.com/Dont-You-Have-Time-Think/dp/0141021136 A fascinating insight into someone who obviously knew he was both very clever, but also how little he knew. I still find his way of thinking inspiring.

    Seconded, I love his style but will never understand 99% of his work.
    I just finished Brian Cox and Jeff Forshaw 'The Quantum Universe' which I enjoyed but it required a bit more brainspace than I could give it on holiday while trying to make sure the kids didn't drown in the pool.
    Also just finished Dave Grohl's autobiography, which was a joy from start to finish and rather easier on the brain.
  • seanoconn
    seanoconn Posts: 11,393
    3 men in a boat. 130 years old but still tremendously funny. 3 hypochondriacs and a dog (the utterly awesome Montmorency) decide they need a two week boating holiday along the Thames from Kingston to Oxford and back.

    Brilliant.
    Pinno, מלך אידיוט וחרא מכונאי
  • dennisn
    dennisn Posts: 10,601
    "The Phantom of the Opera" by Gaston Leroux Another book that I've had for decades yet never read. Really good read. Kept my interest from cover to cover and actually taught me a few things about the Paris Opera House. I'm going to have to step back in time more and read some of the older classics. Maybe I'm ready to to try and tackle "Ulysses" again. It didn't last long the first time I tried it.
  • dennisn
    dennisn Posts: 10,601
    "Bad Blood" by Lorna Sage Pretty good memoir from Lorna, from her childhood to her late teens, and her really messed up grandparents and parents. Yet somehow she became a successful writer.
  • dennisn
    dennisn Posts: 10,601
    "Salt - A World History" by Mark Kurlansky Pretty good book about salt and it's roll in history. Surprisingly, it had a great effect on countries, wars, cities, empires, and revolutions. A somewhat tough read in spots but highly informative. My wife is ready to kill me if I keep talking about salts stories.
  • focuszing723
    focuszing723 Posts: 7,196
    edited July 2022
    dennisn said:

    "Salt - A World History" by Mark Kurlansky Pretty good book about salt and it's roll in history. Surprisingly, it had a great effect on countries, wars, cities, empires, and revolutions. A somewhat tough read in spots but highly informative. My wife is ready to kill me if I keep talking about salts stories.

    Mmmm, interesting. I bet it's been a big part of civilisations evolution trying to desalinate those tense situations.
  • dennisn
    dennisn Posts: 10,601

    dennisn said:

    "Salt - A World History" by Mark Kurlansky Pretty good book about salt and it's roll in history. Surprisingly, it had a great effect on countries, wars, cities, empires, and revolutions. A somewhat tough read in spots but highly informative. My wife is ready to kill me if I keep talking about salts stories.

    Mmmm, interesting. I bet it's been a big part of civilisations evolution trying to desalinate those tense situations.
    ????????????
  • dennisn
    dennisn Posts: 10,601
    "Piranesi" by Susanna Clark. Really liked her first book "Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell". This one however, didn't quite measure up. Not a bad read, just not as good as her first book.
  • MattFalle
    MattFalle Posts: 11,644
    Just finishing Girl with Dragon Tattoo

    Massive disappointment - pretty badly written, horrible subject matter, soshit its not even soshit its good kinda holiday read.

    avoid.
    .
    The camera down the willy isn't anything like as bad as it sounds.
  • dennisn
    dennisn Posts: 10,601
    MattFalle said:

    Just finishing Girl with Dragon Tattoo

    Massive disappointment - pretty badly written, horrible subject matter, soshit its not even soshit its good kinda holiday read.

    avoid.

    Well, you and my wife could have a major argument over that one. Me, haven't read it and doubt I will.
  • MattFalle
    MattFalle Posts: 11,644
    dennisn said:

    MattFalle said:

    Just finishing Girl with Dragon Tattoo

    Massive disappointment - pretty badly written, horrible subject matter, soshit its not even soshit its good kinda holiday read.

    avoid.

    Well, you and my wife could have a major argument over that one. Me, haven't read it and doubt I will.
    happy to. have just flicked the last 3 chapters.

    utter bilge.

    avoid at all costs. uttershite. pounworld da vinci code and that barely made it out of the Planet X end of year sales warehouse clearance.

    i'm off to findmyself a nice Insp. Montalbano or three to prepare myself for the trip to God's own country in a few days..
    .
    The camera down the willy isn't anything like as bad as it sounds.
  • focuszing723
    focuszing723 Posts: 7,196
    edited August 2022
    MattFalle said:

    dennisn said:

    MattFalle said:

    Just finishing Girl with Dragon Tattoo

    Massive disappointment - pretty badly written, horrible subject matter, soshit its not even soshit its good kinda holiday read.

    avoid.

    Well, you and my wife could have a major argument over that one. Me, haven't read it and doubt I will.
    happy to. have just flicked the last 3 chapters.

    utter bilge.

    avoid at all costs. uttershite. pounworld da vinci code and that barely made it out of the Planet X end of year sales warehouse clearance.

    i'm off to findmyself a nice Insp. Montalbano or three to prepare myself for the trip to God's own country in a few days..
    Ah, smashing. Have a nice time in Torquay mate.
  • MattFalle
    MattFalle Posts: 11,644

    MattFalle said:

    dennisn said:

    MattFalle said:

    Just finishing Girl with Dragon Tattoo

    Massive disappointment - pretty badly written, horrible subject matter, soshit its not even soshit its good kinda holiday read.

    avoid.

    Well, you and my wife could have a major argument over that one. Me, haven't read it and doubt I will.
    happy to. have just flicked the last 3 chapters.

    utter bilge.

    avoid at all costs. uttershite. pounworld da vinci code and that barely made it out of the Planet X end of year sales warehouse clearance.

    i'm off to findmyself a nice Insp. Montalbano or three to prepare myself for the trip to God's own country in a few days..
    Ah, smashing. Have a nice time in Torquay mate.
    grazie mille - will do - i hear the gelati are mega at Molly's.
    .
    The camera down the willy isn't anything like as bad as it sounds.
  • rick_chasey
    rick_chasey Posts: 72,517
    Read Friebe's book on Ullrich.

    Was very good. Enjoyed the differentiated approach too -it follows Friebe's journey of discovery of the guy and the characters around him, with plenty of self reflection as well as discussions of wider things that tap into it.

    Arguably a bit repetitive at times but I guess that was the Jan story. Outrageous talent, lacking the rigour of his rivals and making poor decisions.
  • dennisn said:

    "Piranesi" by Susanna Clark. Really liked her first book "Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell". This one however, didn't quite measure up. Not a bad read, just not as good as her first book.

    Strangely I think the other way round, really enjoyed Piranesi but really bored by the other one.
  • focuszing723
    focuszing723 Posts: 7,196
    Ford GT40 by Haynes. God, not recommended, it just prattled on about the bloody engine, wheels, body parts...No plot or characters whatsoever. It gets great reviews too.
  • dennisn
    dennisn Posts: 10,601

    dennisn said:

    "Piranesi" by Susanna Clark. Really liked her first book "Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell". This one however, didn't quite measure up. Not a bad read, just not as good as her first book.

    Strangely I think the other way round, really enjoyed Piranesi but really bored by the other one.
    Interesting. I've heard it both ways from friends of mine.

  • webboo
    webboo Posts: 6,087
    Just read Love and War in the Apennines by Eric Newby
    Great descriptions of Italian life in the mountains in the 1940’s and the bravery of ordinary people.
    I read a Short Walk in the Hindu Kush by the same author many years ago and remember that being a good read. I will have visit his back catalogue.
  • Mad_Malx
    Mad_Malx Posts: 5,001
    webboo said:

    Just read Love and War in the Apennines by Eric Newby
    Great descriptions of Italian life in the mountains in the 1940’s and the bravery of ordinary people.
    I read a Short Walk in the Hindu Kush by the same author many years ago and remember that being a good read. I will have visit his back catalogue.

    Slowly Down the Ganges is good I think, but it was a very long time ago that I read it

  • mrb123
    mrb123 Posts: 4,608
    webboo said:

    Just read Love and War in the Apennines by Eric Newby
    Great descriptions of Italian life in the mountains in the 1940’s and the bravery of ordinary people.
    I read a Short Walk in the Hindu Kush by the same author many years ago and remember that being a good read. I will have visit his back catalogue.

    Just finished this having picked it up on your recommendation. Think it might be one of my favourite ever books. Beautiful, moving and very funny. Particularly enjoyed the passage explaining the difficulty of pulling one's pudding whilst in the POW prison.
  • mrb123
    mrb123 Posts: 4,608
    Born to Run by Christopher McDougall. A book about ultra running and in particular the Tarahumara tribe in Mexico for whom long distance running is a huge part of their culture.

    Was looking forward to this one having done a fair bit of long distance stuff myself this year. Can't say I loved the book however.

    The author writes with a very colloquial American style, for example nobody eats anything in the book, they "chow down". Coming off the beautifully written Love and War in the Apennines, this was a little jarring.

    The structure of the book is all over the place. It's part adventure story as the author searches for the tribe, but then also has a couple of lengthy accounts of famous ultra races. There's a long sciencey bit towards the end as he tries to explain why evolution adapted humans to be able to run long distances.

    Most of the characters he encounters in the book are fairly unlikeable too. They all just come across as a bunch of self obsessed hippy wannabes.

    That said, the Tarahumara clearly are a fascinating bunch and incredible athletes. The whole barefoot running thing is interesting too and I can see the argument for it, but it's notable that the Kipchoges and Jornets of this world still all wear "normal" shoes.
  • rick_chasey
    rick_chasey Posts: 72,517
    edited May 2023
    Almost finished this:



    It's very good, though with a few minor criticisms which reflects more on me than the book.

    It basically documents the rise of Putin and breaks down exactly how the Russian state actually works. We all know in general how it works but the book breaks down in remarkable details (though clearly there is a lot more happening than the book can reference) exactly how it all works.

    I'm relatively well read up on Russian stuff but even I found my jaw dropping at various points in the book when you realise quite how bad it really is, and quite how pervasive Russian dirty money and influence really is.

    My only moan, and this is really on me, is that, after a while, 400 or so pages in, when the writer is describing another elaborate siphoning exercise in order to fill the KGB coffers to enrich both themselves and finance disruption all over the world, it gets a little wearisome.

    The bombardment of detail can get a little overwhelming; perhaps there comes a point where it's worthwhile zooming out rather than documenting each bit.

    Then again, that's the point, it's all deniable unless you really dig in and follow the money. The writer has to prove that.

    The conclusion is pretty grim. However bad you thought Putin and his cronies were, this book will make you think they're worse and more dangerous.

    Plus, I should add it was written pre-invasion, so there are references to the "Ukraine War" which is the 'little green men in the Donbas' war, not the full-scale invasion...
  • plymouthsteve
    plymouthsteve Posts: 136



    "Any good plot twists?"

    Geoffrey Archer. Not a penny more, not a penny less.
    Best twist I've ever read. Had to put the book down to smile before carrying on.