What book are you reading right now?

Minh Nguyen posted:

How much have you read? Initial thoughts? Full review?

I've read about a quarter or a third so far. The author is EP's grandson so he has a lot of affection for, and knowledge of, the man. The book is confirming something that I have long suspected - P&P's pictures were products of a profoundly English imagination. They couldn't been made anywhere else but this country. Powell was from Kent, so that makes sense; but what of Pressberger, the Hungarian Jew exiled to these islands? Of course, as an outsider with an all-seeing outsider's eye, he perhaps understood the English/British better than they understood themselves. This is one of the things that gives his scripts such richness.

I am enjoying the book very much, it's very insightful; but then again I am a complete sucker for Michael Powell, P&P and anything to do with them so I kind of knew I'd enjoy the tome even before I started it.

Kevin-W posted:
Minh Nguyen posted:

How much have you read? Initial thoughts? Full review?

I've read about a quarter or a third so far. The author is EP's grandson so he has a lot of affection for, and knowledge of, the man. The book is confirming something that I have long suspected - P&P's pictures were products of a profoundly English imagination. They couldn't been made anywhere else but this country. Powell was from Kent, so that makes sense; but what of Pressberger, the Hungarian Jew exiled to these islands? Of course, as an outsider with an all-seeing outsider's eye, he perhaps understood the English/British better than they understood themselves. This is one of the things that gives his scripts such richness.

I am enjoying the book very much, it's very insightful; but then again I am a complete sucker for Michael Powell, P&P and anything to do with them so I kind of knew I'd enjoy the tome even before I started it.

Sounds interesting. I would much appreciate your synopsis when you finish reading.

I've just finished reading Frederic Manning's Her Privates We.

A brilliant yet sobering account of a soldiers life during the battle of the Somme.

The world changed markedly thanks to the Great War, and my own perspective on life has undoubtedly changed having read this remarkable book. Totally humbling. 

Tara Westover  -  "Educated, A Memoir"  (2018)  written by a lady who was raised in a Mormon survivalist family in the deep woods of Idaho.  Received no education or schooling until she was 18 yoa and went on to graduate college, receive scholarships to Cambridge and complete PhD level education.  And subsequent reflections on the entire journey.

Nick, have you read any of Ben MacIntyre's books? Very much in the same improbable-but-true boys' own vein. If you like the Milton book you'll  love Agent Zigzag: The True Wartime Story of Eddie Chapman: Lover, Betrayer, Hero, Spy; Operation Mincemeat; Kim Philby: His Most Intimate Betrayal; and Double Cross - The True Story of the D Day Spies.

Makes great TV shows out of his books too.

Kevin-W posted:

Nick, have you read any of Ben MacIntyre's books? Very much in the same improbable-but-true boys' own vein. If you like the Milton book you'll  love Agent Zigzag: The True Wartime Story of Eddie Chapman: Lover, Betrayer, Hero, Spy; Operation Mincemeat; Kim Philby: His Most Intimate Betrayal; and Double Cross - The True Story of the D Day Spies.

Makes great TV shows out of his books too.

Top tips - will check these out - thanks!

 Scandinavia's greatest film-maker, Carl Theodor Dreyer was responsible for a string of austere masterpieces between the 1910s and 1960s, including Day of Wrath, Ordet, The Passion of Joan of Arc, Gertrud and Mikael.

This is - surprisingly, given his reputation as a great master of cinema, especially among cineasts here in Blighty - the first English language biography of the great man. It includes a lot of personal correspondence. A really interesting insight into the man and his work.

mpw posted:

Finished reading - Siddhartha by Herman Hesse

A wonderful book that takes you within....

do look up about the book and the subject matter on the net..

worth your time..

Ah, I read that when still at school, and several times more during my college days and again through my 20s, it was extremely influential on me. I did reread the Glass Bead Game a year or so back for the first time in many years, I loved it as much as I did in my younger days, must read Siddhartha again, thanks for the prompt.

Image result for wolf totem book

An epic Chinese tale in the vein of The Last Emperor, Wolf Totem depicts the dying culture of the Mongols-the ancestors of the Mongol hordes who at one time terrorized the world-and the parallel extinction of the animal they believe to be sacred: the fierce and otherworldly Mongolian wolf

Barbarian Days - A Surfing Life” by William Finnegan.

A Pulitzer Prize winner.

One of those rare books about sport that realizes (and captures) that sporting participation isn’t actually about the sport - important as that is - but is really about that that lives on long after the sporting participation has ended, i.e. the people you meet while participating and the enduring depth of some of those relationships. Excellent writing.

Definitely a “must read” for surfers and highly recommended in any case ...

https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/51fHkAxOWoL._SX301_BO1,204,203,200_.jpg

Following an interesting article in New Scientist the other week.

A big work out for the brain, delving into current theories and experiments on the relations that time has with Quantum, classical, relativity and entanglement.  Offers insightful imagery and turns a few ideas on its head.     A fantastic much to do about nothing.

ynwa250505 posted:
Jeff Anderson posted:

Cory Taylor  -  "Dying, a memoir"  (2017)

What prompted you to read it? What do think of it?

Personal interest in another person's point of view.  After living in fitness and good nutrition for the prior twenty years (including completing a marathon in 1989), from 2002-2004 I went through serious cardiovascular problems  (congenital bi-cuspid aortic valve, damaged a/v node resulting in pacer-dependence, congestive heart failure with 15% EJF resulting in implanted defibrillator/3 lead pacer)  and the resulting beloved American way of massive prescription drug usage in an attempt to "control future risk factors".  From 2004 to 2010, I went to bed nightly hoping not to wake up and was fighting doctors as best I could as I had massive drug side-effects that were way worse than my health battle (the doctors denied what I was experiencing).  I navigated my way (with little or no help) to weening off the drugs except for coumadin and a half-dose single beta-blocker.  I started feeling human again.  Literally two weeks later my wife was diagnosed with a rare blood cancer (I feel strongly her stress dealing with me and my situation contributed to her health change).  She retired in 2011 and I was fortunate to modestly retire in 2014 and reduce that major stress factor for us both.  Now at the age of 69 I shoot hoops for 2 hours, 5 days a week (for three years) and enjoy my music and time with my spouse (who is on an experimental cancer drug and doing quite well).

Book interest was another person's perspective and experiences.  It was heavy on her family experiences and coming to terms with choices made living her life. She spent little time on her own medical community experiences.  I completely agree with her decision to have available an euthanasia drug.  Oregon is a death-with-dignity state (physician-assisted suicide).  At my worst I would not have qualified. My spouse may ultimately have that option, and will make her own choice, but it is not in her near-term decisions.

Jeff A

 

Kevin Mitchell - War, Baby - The Glamour of Violence 

A detailed account about the Nigel Benn v Gerald McClennan (The Dark Destroyer v The G Man) world title fight, the pre fight hype,  the fight itself and the lasting effect on the fighters that left Gerald McClennan fighting for his life and then permenantly brain damaged.  A very well written and balanced book so far. 

Haim Ronen posted:
Jeff Anderson posted:

Ben Caspit  -  "The Netanyahu Years"  (2017)  

Jeff, 

Let us know how the book is. Bibi used to be our neighbor in Jerusalem when he was in the business world and his younger brother Ido was a class mate of mine in high school.

H

Haim, just started the first couple chapters.   Will try to comment when I have completed the book.  Jeff A

nickpeacock posted:

If This Is A Man/The Truce - Primo Levi

This is a painful but essential act of not forgetting, deferred since my visit to Auschwitz in June 2016.

One of the most powerful books I have ever read, Levi’s ability to recount the horror with simplicity, dignity and honour is both humbling and a reason to be proud of the human race.

Eoink posted:
nickpeacock posted:

If This Is A Man/The Truce - Primo Levi

This is a painful but essential act of not forgetting, deferred since my visit to Auschwitz in June 2016.

One of the most powerful books I have ever read, Levi’s ability to recount the horror with simplicity, dignity and honour is both humbling and a reason to be proud of the human race.

“The Periodic Table”, also by Levi, is well worth reading. It was voted the best science book ever written by the Royal Institution in face of some worthy alternatives by Darwin, Penrose, Hardy etc etc.

Another book worth reading (for those interested in the depths plumbed by mankind) is Solzhenitsyn’s “Gulag Archipelago”.

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