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travelaround

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Can't let this good old thread die...

So.. books I've read lately worthy of mentioning here:

High Sierra: A Love Story, by Kim Stanley Robinson - the author normally writes science fiction including the Mars Trilogy and I've never read his sci-fi books but I loved this book about hiking in the Sierra Nevada Mountains... it was published on May 10 this year. It combines his memoir about hiking adventures, some chapters on Sierra geology, and biographical chapters about other Sierra hikers and writers.

The Pioneers, by David McCullough - first time to read a book by this author and I was surprised at how much I liked it. This book is mainly about the settlement of Marietta, Ohio. Now, to offset that information I'm reading a book about the same area from a Native American point of view: Indigenous Prosperity and American Conquest by Susan Sleeper Smith - but I haven't read enough of that yet to say whether or not I like it. It was recommended.........

California, an American History by John Mack Faragher - this new history of CA focuses on multicultural issues including a lot of racism and the destruction of the California native cultures. I learned a lot about my state that I didn't know before. Suppressed history... all that. The book covers history from the time of the first European explorers on the coast to 2021.

Just finished: Unmasked: My Life Solving America's Cold Cases, by Paul Holes . . . this is the memoir of a person who worked as a forensic investigator in Contra Costa County, California. I don't normally read true crime books but I do like to read memoirs, and this one hooked me because of the location. I lived in that county from birth to age 18 then again in the 1990's - and I knew of some of the crimes and even recognized one of the people mentioned (a law enforcement officer) as someone I'd met while living in Pittsburg, CA for five years until 1999 while a series of homicides nearby made me want to pack up and move north.

All the books I've read in 2022 are listed here.... that's a page on Goodreads.
 

vanbrat

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I'm in the middle of STORMY WEATHER by Paulette Jiles. I found it in a laundry room at a KOA somewhere in Montana...
I also just finished the Tales of Beedle the Bard a Harry Potter book. It is supposed to be a classic child wizarding book or such....
I have 2 or 3 new 'camping' cook books but so far not sure they are any good have to put the other books down so I can read them more closely
 

travelaround

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A Few First in Genre Books

Today I'm reading the first published book by Grace Livingston Hill, published in 1900... she was a Christian fiction author who invented the genre and wrote over 100 books. The book I'm reading, her first, is A Daily Rate. This is my first time to read a book by this author. This is VERY Christian - moreso than most Christian fiction these days, so don't read it if that would bother you!

In 2017 I enjoyed reading The Virginian, by Owen Wister, said to be the first Western novel. This is literary history. It was dated, but also somewhat interesting - about a cowboy living in Wyoming and Montana back in the day. It was published in 1902.

In 2013 I read The Story of Mary MacLane, possibly the most boring book I've ever read, but it was a bestseller and started a new genre that was very popular at one time: Confessional Diaries. Here's my Goodreads review of the book. Mary MacLane's diary was also published in 1902.

Literature has come a long way in the last century.
 

Morgana

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Rereading Martin Cruz Smith's Red Square. (One benefit of a lousy memory is that I forget whodunit in a year or two and can recycle my favorite mysteries.) I love his characters.

Just for kicks, took a free class on "open source intelligence" from the Basel Institute on Governance (https://baselgovernance.org/news/new-free-elearning-course-open-source-intelligence-osint). It was a bit dry in spots, and the really juicy stuff was mostly "beyond the scope of this class" wouldn't you know it, but it was still pretty interesting. It's structured as a fictional (I think!) investigation of a boat suspected of illegal fishing, and they show you a bunch of ways to find out different innocuous-seeming details and then match them up to make a clue.

It's a fun way to learn a few Internet search tips and/or indulge your Walter Mitty Interpol detective fantasies... and who knows? maybe get inspired to learn more.
But be careful about Internet safety! especially around the "dark web" stuff. Do your own due diligence. For example, they say Macs can't get viruses and that's not true. Trust but verify ;)
 

vanbrat

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A Few First in Genre Books

Today I'm reading the first published book by Grace Livingston Hill, published in 1900... she was a Christian fiction author who invented the genre and wrote over 100 books. The book I'm reading, her first, is A Daily Rate. This is my first time to read a book by this author. This is VERY Christian - more so than most Christian fiction these days, so don't read it if that would bother you!

In 2017 I enjoyed reading The Virginian, by Owen Wister, said to be the first Western novel. This is literary history. It was dated, but also somewhat interesting - about a cowboy living in Wyoming and Montana back in the day. It was published in 1902.

In 2013 I read The Story of Mary MacLane, possibly the most boring book I've ever read, but it was a bestseller and started a new genre that was very popular at one time: Confessional Diaries. Here's my Goodreads review of the book. Mary MacLane's diary was also published in 1902.

Literature has come a long way in the last century.
I'm not much on the super Christian stuff. But I remember The Virginian.... and enjoyed it. I read it during my sons western phase. That and most of the Louie L'Amour books. I tried to read a Sacket book by him recently and could not finish it way, way to much macho stuff. But I liked most of his stuff. I need to make a trip to the library so I can get something new. That kido is still more into books then anything on screen of any kind.
 

JDub

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"Summerfolk 1710 - 2000. A history of the Dacha"

By Stephen Lovell.

Russian Dacha gardens literally saved the nation from starving in the 90's post Soviet collapse. I actually model my garden plan on the dacha model - a mix of perennial and annual fruits, vegetables, and herbs. I do very well by it. Guess I'm a "Dachnik" at heart!

:sneaky:
 

Morgana

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Re-reading parts of Annette Gordon-Reed's On Juneteenth just in time for the holiday. Six historical essays enlivened by details from her own life growing up black in Texas at the beginning of the civil rights era. Lots of Texas pride, among other things. Elegant but simple -- very readable.
 

NomadCat

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I’m reading “Blowout” by Rachel Maddow; it’s excellent. Covers the petroleum industry and it’s tendency to warp government and increase corruption around the world (due to the massive amount of cash; power corrupts etc). I avoided it for a couple years out of fears it would be too depressing, but Maddow has a sly wit and includes enough descriptions of the sometimes very colorful characters involved to make it an engaging read.
 

Cajunwolf

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@travelaround Kim Stanley Robinson's Mars series is a good read. I have many of his books, slowly but surely getting them on my Kindle. I love the feel of a good book, but a physical library is impossible when one lives just over 160 square feet. Currently, my brother has several boxes of my books stored in a spare room in his house; I'm grateful for that but don't know what to do long-term.

I just finished "Jester's Fortune" by Dewey Lambdin for those who enjoy good sea stories filled with battles and a lesson on history. Next will most likely be The Peripheral" by William Gibson, one of my favorite authors; he invented cyberspace/cyberpunk, think Neuromancer. He also co-wrote "The Difference Engine" with Bruce Sterling which started the "Steampunk" craze. Now, that's a wild book to read! It's a what-if they had built Babaggages computer to scale in 1850s England and powered by steam kind of story. :cool:
 
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