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Old 07-12-2013, 01:05 PM   #1581
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Just finished Doc: A Novel by Mary Doria Russell. Link takes you to a review in Washington Times.

Historical fiction about Doc Holliday, with the Earp brothers, Bat Masterson and others ... great read. Russell dissipates some of the folklore surrounding these guys and garners sympathy for the choices they made. It was a rough living in Dodge City. In her notes, the author talks about where she got the information for her story...including notes from Big Nose Kate, (photo of Kate on Wikipedia) Doc's companion of nine years.

I enjoyed it so thoroughly, from first page to the last. Can't imagine how much it would be loved by somebody who has a great interest in the Old West. Finished it at the gym this morning and was disappointed it was over.
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Old 07-13-2013, 07:17 PM   #1582
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Just back from my two week sojourn in the Maine woods. While I was there I read:

The Anatomy of Fascism by Robert Paxton
The Sand Pebbles by Richard McKenna
The Marne, 1914 by Holger Herwig
Islands in the Stream by Ernest Hemingway
The Medici by James Cleugh
The Confessions of Nat Turner by William Styron
In the Heart of the Sea by Nathaniel Philbrick
The Rise and Fall of the Bible by Timothy Beal
The House of Wisdom by Jim al-Khalili
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Old 07-13-2013, 08:46 PM   #1583
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Just back from my two week sojourn in the Maine woods. While I was there I read:

The Anatomy of Fascism by Robert Paxton
The Sand Pebbles by Richard McKenna
The Marne, 1914 by Holger Herwig
Islands in the Stream by Ernest Hemingway
The Medici by James Cleugh
The Confessions of Nat Turner by William Styron
In the Heart of the Sea by Nathaniel Philbrick
The Rise and Fall of the Bible by Timothy Beal
The House of Wisdom by Jim al-Khalili
Sounds like a good group. Didn't you do any hiking?
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Old 07-13-2013, 09:08 PM   #1584
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Originally Posted by Gumby View Post
Just back from my two week sojourn in the Maine woods. While I was there I read:

The Anatomy of Fascism by Robert Paxton
The Sand Pebbles by Richard McKenna
The Marne, 1914 by Holger Herwig
Islands in the Stream by Ernest Hemingway
The Medici by James Cleugh
The Confessions of Nat Turner by William Styron
In the Heart of the Sea by Nathaniel Philbrick
The Rise and Fall of the Bible by Timothy Beal
The House of Wisdom by Jim al-Khalili
Which ones would you recommend?
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Old 07-13-2013, 09:11 PM   #1585
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Wow, Gumby, that's quite a list for two weeks!

I recently reread Rebecca by Daphne Du Maurier, for a book club. Anachronistic but well written prose, with a sense of foreboding. I also rewatched the Oscar winning movie (1944) free on the Daphne Du Maurier website.
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Old 07-13-2013, 09:25 PM   #1586
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Which ones would you recommend?
My two favorites were The Sand Pebbles and The Confessions of Nat Turner. The former is about a US Navy gunboat caught up in the CHinese civil war in the 1920s. I suppose I liked McKenna because he was a Navy machinist's mate and his descriptions of the engineering plant on the Yangtze gunboat ring true for me. It is also a very interesting look at an interesting time in Chinese history and a fascinating exploration of the starkly different viewpoints of the western and Chinese characters. The Confessions of Nat Turner is about the only sustained slave revolt to occur in US history, in 1831 in the Tidewater area of Virginia. Styron is just a straight up great writer, and his exploration of the loneliness and "otherness" that gives life to Turner's rage is quite stunning. Again, it is the contrasting viewpoints of the characters from distinct social groups that captures the reader's attention.
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Old 07-19-2013, 07:05 PM   #1587
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Now reading Moby Dick. While browsing around the library looking for my next book I encountered this and thought of WTR. It's amazing. Can't believe I waited so long to read this. "Call me Ishmael".
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Old 07-19-2013, 07:14 PM   #1588
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Now reading Moby Dick. While browsing around the library looking for my next book I encountered this and thought of WTR. It's amazing. Can't believe I waited so long to read this. "Call me Ishmael".
Philbrick's In the Heart of the Sea describes the factual occurrence -- the sinking of the whale ship Essex by an enraged sperm whale -- that served as the basis for Melville's tale. It was quite interesting, and Philbrick is a good writer. You might chance it after you finish Moby Dick.
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Old 07-19-2013, 07:33 PM   #1589
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Philbrick's In the Heart of the Sea describes the factual occurrence -- the sinking of the whale ship Essex by an enraged sperm whale -- that served as the basis for Melville's tale. It was quite interesting, and Philbrick is a good writer. You might chance it after you finish Moby Dick.
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Old 07-19-2013, 07:34 PM   #1590
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For people who might not know, The Sand Pebbles was made into a movie in 1966, starring Steve McQueen and Candice Bergen. It would be interesting to see if the screenplay followed the original 1962 novel, which I have not read.
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Temptation: Finding Self-Control in an Age of Excess
Old 07-20-2013, 05:29 AM   #1591
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Temptation: Finding Self-Control in an Age of Excess

I just finished Temptation: Finding Self-Control in an Age of Excess by Daniel Akst, which was previously published as We Have Met the Enemy. This is an excellent essay, well-supported with research, on the challenges of controlling one’s own behaviors. It occasionally touches on the subject of restraining spending, which could be applied to living below one's means. The later chapters are a little drier than some of the earlier ones, but well worth working through.
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Old 07-28-2013, 05:46 PM   #1592
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Currently reading Prague Fatale, another in the excellent Bernie Gunther series by Phillip Kerr.

The Bernie Gunther Novels of Philip Kerr - BernieGunther.com
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Old 08-02-2013, 07:16 AM   #1593
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Enjoyed Back to Blood, Tom Wolfe's latest novel. If you liked Bonfire of the Vanities you will probably like this one. This time we are in Miami looking at cultural subsets of Cubanos, Americanos, Africanos, Haitians, Cops, robbers... Wolfe has an interesting way of simultaneously skewering and sympathizing with a group, always with generous doses of politically incorrect stereotyping. Like most of Wolfe's books it can help to skim through some of the multipage descriptive sections.
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Old 08-02-2013, 07:35 AM   #1594
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Found a list of 100 best spiritual books of the last century, so I'm trying to make my way through that. I'm hitting the library first and getting the cheap ones on Kindle. It's hit and miss -- some of them interest me, others are a little too verbose or academic. I'm enjoying Chesterton's Orthodoxy and Black Elk Speaks right now. For lighter fare, I've got Be Yourself, by Mike Robbins, an easy read about authenticity.
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Old 08-03-2013, 08:14 AM   #1595
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Found a list of 100 best spiritual books of the last century, so I'm trying to make my way through that. I'm hitting the library first and getting the cheap ones on Kindle. It's hit and miss -- some of them interest me, others are a little too verbose or academic. I'm enjoying Chesterton's Orthodoxy and Black Elk Speaks right now. For lighter fare, I've got Be Yourself, by Mike Robbins, an easy read about authenticity.
Can you link to that list? I would be interested
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Old 08-03-2013, 08:37 AM   #1596
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Can you link to that list? I would be interested
Me too. I was wondering if they included The Teachings of Don Juan on the list, or if they were sticking with the more mainstream spirituality. Just curious.
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Old 08-03-2013, 10:29 AM   #1597
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Philip Roth's The Counterlife. Classic Roth, full of self-obsession and examination of the many different lives one person could live. I enjoyed it.
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Old 08-03-2013, 10:44 AM   #1598
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Can you link to that list? I would be interested
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Me too. I was wondering if they included The Teachings of Don Juan on the list, or if they were sticking with the more mainstream spirituality. Just curious.
Here you go.

100 Best Spiritual Books of the Century (101 books)

Here's the alphabetized version:

http://usatoday30.usatoday.com/life/...ks/book372.htm

I don't see Castaneda on the list. It's all a matter of opinion, of course. My personal list would be very different, I'm sure. I was curious what the authorities thought, though. There is so much junk out there, it's hard to know where to start, and I didn't want to waste too much time sifting through the chaff. I figured that using a "100 best" list by a more-or-less authoritative committee would be a good way to save time and to alert me to books I might otherwise overlook.

Quote:
USA Today's 100 Best Spiritual Books of the Century were selected by a committee led by Philip Zaleski, who edits Harper San Francisco's annual collection of the best spiritual writings.

The committee, representing a global range of religions and spiritual practices, included: Thomas Moore, Natalie Goldberg, Rodger Kamenetz, Harold Kushner, Lawrence Kushner, Christopher de Vinck, David Yount, Kabir Helminski, Helen Tworkov, Ron Hansen, Frederic Brussat, Joseph Bruchac, Huston Smith, Lawrence Cunningham, and John Wilson.
They say it's USA Today's, but I think it's actually Harper's list.
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Old 08-03-2013, 01:14 PM   #1599
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I've been reading a lot of Civil War journals on Free ebooks - Project Gutenberg. But the last thing I read was The Exploring Expedition to the Rocky
Mountains, Oregon and California, by Brevet Col. J.C. Fremont. http://www.gutenberg.org/dirs/etext05/8expr10h.htm.

We don't think about the work scientist did in the early 1800's, and the risks they took to do it. But they were every bit as exacting in their work as the guys in the modern labs are today.

This is a good read as old journals go.
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Old 08-03-2013, 10:32 PM   #1600
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Enjoyed Back to Blood, Tom Wolfe's latest novel. If you liked Bonfire of the Vanities you will probably like this one.
Tom Wolfe is a favorite author. Bonfire, on my list of best books read. Glad you posted this. Thanks...adding this to my future reading list.
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