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Re: Books you're reading

Taylor --    Totally agree with your professor.   I posted on that topic when discussing "FACTFULNESS" a couple of weeks ago on this thread, (a book mlott had recommended).   Firmly believe all "green" and "enviro" initiatives are futile without addressing Third-world population and embracing nuclear power.

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Explorer ○○○

Re: Books you're reading

ViveBene, would encourage you to finish The Count of Monte Cristo.  Think you will be glad you did.  Wonderful book.

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Re: Books you're reading

Reading Sandhills Boy by Elmer Kelton

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Re: Books you're reading


@richardsok wrote:

    Am still locked down here in Florida with thin gruel for reading material. 

    Follow up:  I finally got my daughter to start watching THE DAWNS HERE ARE QUIET on Youtube. The next day she said she didn't finish the first installment.  "It was boring," she sniffed.

     I'm going to disown her.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------


I did finish this short series...The Dawns Here are Quiet.  

I enjoyed it.  Interesting to see how Russia puts together such a series.

Perhaps I enjoyed it, because now, for us retirees in Florida, the dawns here are quiet!

R48

 

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Re: Books you're reading

I love primary historical sources and though the War as it is still known here is not my favorite subject, I do admire John Minor Botts.  For my birthday my family gave me a first edition of his  The great rebellion: Its secret history, rise, progress, and disastrous failure .

Botts was a Virginia slaveholder who remained loyal to the Union.  He served time in solitary confinement before living a few years on a plantation which he won gambling.  He reentered politics once the Confederacy was defeated.  His grave in Richmond, says it all:

"He was under all circumstances an inflexible friend of the American Union. 'I know no North, no South, no East, no West. I know only my Country, my whole Country, and nothing but my Country.'"

 

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Re: Books you're reading

I recently read two books to gain some historical perspective on pandemics past.  The Great Plague by Lloyd and Dorothy Moote, and The Great Influenza by John Barry.

The Great Plague is about London's 1665 plague.  Thankfully it seems we aren't even close to such a situation.  I marvel at the fact that civilization survived and even thrived among the recurrent waves of plague and other diseases around that time.  As a side note, we find out Samuel Pepys was quite a horndog and grifter through it all, getting rich through taking kickbacks for Navy contracts he was charged with arranging.   Other than that, it was really devastating and bleak.  

The Great Influenza, about the 1918-19 Spanish Flu is really a great book.  Very well written and informative.  To provide context, John Barry gives the back story on the development of scientific medicine over the latter part of the 1800's to the time of the outbreak.  It's quite remarkable how recent an innovation science-based medicine is.  Bleeding people was quite common 150 years ago.  Great book that reads a bit like a thriller in parts.  Or maybe it was just the contrast to me of the improvement from the Great Plague.

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Re: Books you're reading


@Bizman wrote:

I recently read two books to gain some historical perspective on pandemics past.  The Great Plague by Lloyd and Dorothy Moote, and The Great Influenza by John Barry.

The Great Plague is about London's 1665 plague.  Thankfully it seems we aren't even close to such a situation.  I marvel at the fact that civilization survived and even thrived among the recurrent waves of plague and other diseases around that time.  As a side note, we find out Samuel Pepys was quite a horndog and grifter through it all, getting rich through taking kickbacks for Navy contracts he was charged with arranging.   Other than that, it was really devastating and bleak.  

The Great Influenza, about the 1918-19 Spanish Flu is really a great book.  Very well written and informative.  To provide context, John Barry gives the back story on the development of scientific medicine over the latter part of the 1800's to the time of the outbreak.  It's quite remarkable how recent an innovation science-based medicine is.  Bleeding people was quite common 150 years ago.  Great book that reads a bit like a thriller in parts.  Or maybe it was just the contrast to me of the improvement from the Great Plague.


Rats, Lice and History by Zinsser is a 1935 classic.  You might like it too.  It is still in print.  (It was one the first history books I read.) 

 

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Re: Books you're reading

Now watching "The Dawns are Quiet" on YouTube. WOW, I am hooked.  Was not sure what to expect with a Russian Film.  And if you don't mind reading the English subtitles do yourself a favor and watch this great series.

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Re: Books you're reading


@dkheverly wrote:

Now watching "The Dawns are Quiet" on YouTube. WOW, I am hooked.  Was not sure what to expect with a Russian Film.  And if you don't mind reading the English subtitles do yourself a favor and watch this great series.


"When EF Hutton richardsok and R48 speak in one voice, people listen! :-)"

Enjoy the short series, dk.

BTW richardsok and I lunched together at my club, in late January, and I posted warnings then of high probability of a stock bear market coming, due COVID...sorry.

R48

 

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Re: Books you're reading

Reading Albert Camus's The Plague.  When the coronavirus hit, I remembered the novel, which I'd read in a college class 40 years ago.  An outbreak of bubonic plague in the city of Oran brings out the worst and best in the citizenry.  

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Re: Books you're reading

Aquinas;

 

Just a spot-on suggestion and observation.

 

And for a non-fiction account[s], never, ever discount;

1. Boccaccio's descriptions of the Black Death in his Decameron,

2.Procopius' description of Justinian's Plague in his Secret History, and finally,

3.Thucydides description of the Athenian Plague and the Death of Pericles,  in his History of the Peloponnesian War.

 

All required reading for me back in College while obtaining my non-financially rewarding Classical and Western Philosophy degrees, also about 40 years ago, and re-read just last March/2020.

 

Signed,

 

NoFriends1

 

 

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Re: Books you're reading

Retire on Less Than You Think by Fred Brock

Gabe

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Re: Books you're reading


@NoFriends1 wrote:

And for a non-fiction account[s], never, ever discount;

1. Boccaccio's descriptions of the Black Death in his Decameron,

2.Procopius' description of Justinian's Plague in his Secret History, and finally,

3.Thucydides description of the Athenian Plague and the Death of Pericles,  in his History of the Peloponnesian War.

All required reading for me back in College while obtaining my non-financially rewarding Classical and Western Philosophy degrees, also about 40 years ago, and re-read just last March/2020.


Maybe no money in such a degree, but what a great experience to read such books when you're young and then to come back to them decades later.  Other recommendations:

--There's a recent New Yorker piece about Camus's The Plague in light of the current pandemic  https://www.nytimes.com/2020/03/19/opinion/sunday/coronavirus-camus-plague.html

--Another classic is Daniel Defoe's A Journal of a Plague Year (1722), an account of the 1665 plague that killed an estimated 1/4 of the people in London.  

--And in her book A Distant Mirror, historian Barbara Tuchman has a chapter on the plague that decimated Europe in the 14th century ("'This Is the End of the World': The Black Death").

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Re: Books you're reading

With the virus lockdown, I'm reduced to rooting through a local bookbin filled with free throw-aways. There I found Balzac's EUGENIE GRANDET.   I don't expect any M* readers to actually try this French antique, but I'll just mention it anyway.

Read two pages and you are in a now-forgotten old world of provincial France where peasants, pinch-penny merchants and the traditional church vie with the remains of the old revolutionaries and the resurgent aristocrats.

Old Grandet is a vicious, grasping rural miser ruling his wife, maid and daughter with cruel economy. Into this bare, unhappy home comes nephew Charles -- sent from Paris to deliver a brother's letter to the old man. The letter reveals what spoiled, indulged Charles doesn't yet know -- that his father is bankrupt, will promptly commit suicide for honor -- and would Grandet help the now-impoverished nephew?

Well, old Grandet has no intention of helping young, puffed-up Charles with his exquisite wardrobe and gold watch and engraved dueling pistols. Charles is shipped off to the Far East -- but not before innocent little Eugenie falls in love with the god-like fop -- and secretly gives him her little savings to help him in the cruel world. Before he goes, he swears eternal love... no matter how long it takes for him to return. But will he stay faithful?

Instead of manly virtue, Charles learns cruelty & vice in the world and makes his fortune in the slave trade. Thus the sins of fathers deform souls of their children.

Will Eugenie survive her father's brutality after her mother passes away? And how?

A couple of samples from Balzac:

God will recognize his angels by the inflection of their voices and by the mystery of their regrets.

Who writes like that any more?

His maid, Nanon..... had a face which would have been much admired on the shoulders of a Grenadier of the Guard.

and

To young girls religiously brought up ignorant and pure in mind, everything is love as soon as they place their foot within love's enchanted regions. They walk there ...veiled with that celestial light which their minds emit and which surrounds their lover . They invest him with the Purity of their own feelings and clothe him with the brightness of their own thoughts.”

We're not in Kansas any more, Toto.

 



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Re: Books you're reading

Reading Hillary Mantel's Wolf Hall.

Spectacular piece of writing. Nothing matches Tudor deviousness. 😉

I was unaware of periodic outbreaks in London of sweating sickness in the summer that would kill in 24 hours.

Bob

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Re: Books you're reading

Spying On The South by Horwitz and The British Are Coming by Atkinson.

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Re: Books you're reading

Live Rich........Stephen M. Pollan and Mark Levine

Gabe

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Re: Books you're reading

@richardsok  Sounds like the makings of a good PBS mini-series.  That does sound interesting, so I bounced over to Amazon, and they have a couple of paperback editions, one of which sells for $4.49.  There is a note in the writeup that this is a public domain book and can probably be found for free on the internet.  

For now, I'll make a note of this book and see if any of the Delaware public libraries has a copy, whenever we open back up.  Thanks for the post, doubt I would have ever been aware of the book, otherwise.

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Re: Books you're reading

Just read Ship of Fools by Tucker Carlson.  

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Re: Books you're reading

Just finished the latest Stephen King book, "If It Bleeds", and I'm sad to say I was a bit disappointed in it.  And I don't like saying that, I am a big Stephen King fan.  I've really enjoyed his last few books, and for me this new one just fell flat.  The book consists of a few short stories, and one novella. 

The novella is the saving grace of the book, the main character is Holly Gibney, who first made her appearance in the Bill Hodges trilogy. and she was one of the main characters in "The Outsider".  A good story, my favorite story in the book.  

I also liked the opening story, "Mr. Harrigan's Phone", which clocked in at 88 pages.  

Mixed feelings about the closing story "Rat".  When I first read it, I actually skipped a lot of the middle section, but got curious when I read the author's commentary about the stories in the book, and I went back and read what I had initially skipped.  

The other few stories just missed their mark with me, there were a couple I could have done without altogether.

I would say that if you are a true Stephen King fan you would probably want to read this, but the casual reader should approach with care.  

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