Short reviews of books you've recently read

Discussion in 'Et Cetera, Et Cetera' started by D_Barbi_Queue, Jan 8, 2006.

  1. D_Barbi_Queue

    D_Barbi_Queue Account Disabled

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2004
    Messages:
    2,283
    Likes Received:
    1
    In honor of Dr. D's movie thread, I'm starting one for the avid readers.

    My contribution: The Shadow Divers by Robert Kurson.

    Let me just start by saying that this wasn't a book I would have seeked out by any means, but a student that my husband tutored last year gave it to his as a "thank you." I read the back cover and was intrigued.

    It's about a couple of very experienced scuba divers that discovered a U-Boat about 100 miles off the coast of NJ around 1991. According to all military records, there was no reason for one to be anywhere near that spot. Over the course of the next 6-7 years, divers made several trips to try to discover the identity of it - during which 3 divers were lost, bones from the deceased sailors were found, dead ends were ran into each time they thought they had a break through, marriages crumbled and countless hours were spend in reasearching the possible identity.

    The streak of bad luck that they ran into time and time again was just amazing, but in the end it finally came together for them. They literally re-wrote history. There's just so much more to it that I can't even begin to describe but in all I'm glad that I took a chance in reading a book that I wouldn't have glanced at in the first place.

    Subsequent to finishing the book, I discovered that a screen play is currently being written for the movie and Ridley Scott is to direct it. They expect that it will come out in 2007, but no one has been cast yet.
     
  2. Dr. Dilznick

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2005
    Messages:
    1,662
    Likes Received:
    1
    Just finished: The Fall by Albert Camus. This is my second time reading it. I love this shit, real quick read too.
    On Liberty by John Stuart Mill. Very relevant, in that it defends the individual while advocating the community as well.
    The Republic by Plato. This got boring. Shut the fuck up already.

    Now: Art of War by Sun Tzu. I wanna see if this is worth the hype. Things rarely are.
    In Defense of Elitism by William Henry. Some old Democrat gets cranky at the current social system of the country.
    Terror and Liberalism by Paul Berman. Another pissed of lib.


    I know it's my birthday and all, but I just wanted to say hi. Happy belated New Year, TAG :biggrin1:
     
  3. MsLulu

    MsLulu New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2005
    Messages:
    177
    Likes Received:
    0
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    Denver, CO
    Heretics of Dune. All I can say is:

    1. The Atreides line knows how to f* up the universe
    2. Duncan Idaho version 1034 is hotter than ever
    3. It's a lot more coherent then it's predecessor by a million times
    4. I always liked the idea of ruling the universe and sex being your weapon of choice. :)
     
  4. dlcs

    dlcs New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2005
    Messages:
    464
    Likes Received:
    0
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    Sector ZZ9, Plural Z Alpha
    "The Virgin Suicides" by Jeffrey Eugenides.

    The story of five sisters who take their own lives one by one as told by the boys who loved/idealized them.

    The first time I read it I was going through a period of major depression, but oddly enough, it didn't give me any ideas. Instead it made me think about the scope of influence people really have in their worlds and what would happen to the people I love if I made that decision.

    In the end, you don't find out why the sisters did it, but it makes you hold onto the people you love just a little bit more...
     
  5. B_caneadea

    B_caneadea New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2005
    Messages:
    736
    Likes Received:
    0
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    San Francisco
    Assassination Vacation by Sarah Vowell

    She travels to the sites of the assassinations of 4 US Presidents. Her writing style is very humorous and historically very interesting and informative.
    -----------------------------------------------------------------------
    The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger

    I LOVED this book. Well written and a different kind of story(not at all your typical time travel tale). A man travels through time and always arrives naked. *that got your attention*
    -----------------------------------------------------------------------
    A Million Little Pieces by James Frey

    One of the BEST books I have ever read. VERY emotional true tale of a man in rehab.
     
  6. dlcs

    dlcs New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2005
    Messages:
    464
    Likes Received:
    0
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    Sector ZZ9, Plural Z Alpha
    The Frey book is the current Oprah's Book Club selection. That guy is in for one hell of a ride... and from what I've read of the book, he totally deserves it after what he went through. Good for him.
     
  7. SpeedoGuy

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    May 18, 2004
    Messages:
    4,229
    Albums:
    1
    Likes Received:
    10
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Pacific Northwest, USA
    Confederates in the Attic by Tony Horwitz. An interesting and entertaining look at popular interpretations of the U.S. civil war. Horwitz researched his book by traveling around the south and interviewing historians, archelologists, writers, educators, soldier's descendents and battle re-enactors. He visited battle sites, museums, universities, etc. I enjoyed this book alot.
     
  8. GoneA

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2005
    Messages:
    5,176
    Likes Received:
    1
    two days ago i finished reading The World is Flat by Thomas L. Friedman. it really was a good book. his views of globalization are astounding, i would say. actually, it wasn't a book i had planned to read, i was in the book store searching for my next novel, happened upon this book and was hooked for the very first paragraph.

    before that i read Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell by Susanna Clarke. she really is a great writer. that was one of the few times i read a 750+ page book and was very, very sad that it ended.

    [FONT=&quot]i don't know what my next one will be. i've been trying desperately hard to get my hands on The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time.[/FONT]
     
  9. B_Danceswithlamps

    B_Danceswithlamps New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2005
    Messages:
    554
    Likes Received:
    0
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Traveling!
    Forgotten Fire, by Adam Bagdasarian. It is about this boy whose life gets torn apart during world war II by the Nazis. Really, really good book.
     
  10. SpeedoGuy

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    May 18, 2004
    Messages:
    4,229
    Albums:
    1
    Likes Received:
    10
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Pacific Northwest, USA
    I read one of Friedman's latest, Attitude and Latitudes, which was mainly about the middle east. I have mixed feelings about him. He's obviously intelligent but I sometimes wonder whether he oversimplifies complex issues to make himself look smarter. I mean, in Attitudes and Latitudes, he basically tried to claim that the Israeli/Arab conflict could be solved in a few days if a few key political players agreed to shake hands and make nice to each other. I just don't think its that simple.
     
  11. GoneA

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2005
    Messages:
    5,176
    Likes Received:
    1
    you're not the first person i heard say that - sure you won't be the last. i do agree with you, however.
     
  12. MsLulu

    MsLulu New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2005
    Messages:
    177
    Likes Received:
    0
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    Denver, CO
    Caneadea, I started The Time Traveller's Wife not a few days ago and am already about 1/3 of the way through. It's a damn good book, if I don't say so myself.
     
  13. D_Martin van Burden

    D_Martin van Burden Account Disabled

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2002
    Messages:
    3,365
    Likes Received:
    6
    I wish I could be as sympathetic, but I'm not. Frey's work falls just short of a boldfaced lie, and the Smoking Gun released a lengthy article entitled, "A Million Little Lies."

    Here's the article:
    http://www.thesmokinggun.com/jamesfrey/0104061jamesfrey1.html

    Here's my rant, of course:
    http://tidalripper.blogspot.com/2006/01/on-credibility-false-reality-and.html

    I'm not a fan of the Gun either, but they really do their investigative work. This isn't just an issue of whether or not Frey wrote nonfiction. It's shameful and anger-inducing to know that some guy really blew up details of his life for the sake of profit, and that he continues to assert that this stuff is true even as contradictory evidence surfaces bit by bit. This fool is ballsy enough to take it into the courtroom, alleging that he's on the side of truth.

    But really, this is more about the people who are so caught up in this tale. I'm all for getting empowered by what you read, but at this rate, Frey's gonna call himself an addiction guru and he'd be in a real position to cause some undue harm. Never mind that I want to break his kneecaps for lying so tastelessly anyway.
     
  14. jakeatolla

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    May 22, 2004
    Messages:
    3,093
    Albums:
    1
    Likes Received:
    10
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Canada
    Only Begotten Daughter by James Morrow

    God sends another child to earth, this time a girl, born to
    a virgin , who happens to be a 60 year old jewish man.
    (Try and figure that out !!!!!)
     
  15. dlcs

    dlcs New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2005
    Messages:
    464
    Likes Received:
    0
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    Sector ZZ9, Plural Z Alpha
    Saw that the day after my post. Had a severe Dad flashback... he claimed he was in 'Nam... said he'd been discharged from the military for a combat injury... sigh. So much for Oprah's Book Club.
     
  16. GoneA

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2005
    Messages:
    5,176
    Likes Received:
    1

    [FONT=&quot]i absolutely love james morrow[/FONT][FONT=&quot]. Towing [/FONT][FONT=&quot]Jehovah was great!! i recommend it to everyone i ever meet - no matter what the circumstances. :tongue:

    i haven't read Only Begotten Daughter ... oh but i shall, beloved. i shall....

    [/FONT]
     
  17. jay_too

    jay_too New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2002
    Messages:
    821
    Likes Received:
    0
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    CA
    A really good read and an eye-opening book is Nelson Mandela's Long Walk to Freedom. It reveals the strange culture and savagery of apartheid South Africa; in the end, good triumphs over evil.
     
  18. jakeatolla

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    May 22, 2004
    Messages:
    3,093
    Albums:
    1
    Likes Received:
    10
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Canada

    If you liked Towing Jehovah, then read the sequel,
    Blameless in Abaddon. Fantastic book.

    Trouble is , his work is often out of print and hard to find.
     
  19. jay_too

    jay_too New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2002
    Messages:
    821
    Likes Received:
    0
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    CA
    I just finished The Forging of the Union, 1781 - 1789, Richard B. Morris.

    It gives an insight to the basic ideas of the new nation. One that I found most interesting is that during and following the Revolution most Americans were very concerned that in the new government Protestants, dissenters [such as the Quakers, Unitarians, Jehovah's Witness, etc.], Deists, Jews, Catholics, atheists and agnostics should have protection from the government. It would appear that the bases of our constitutional system was in secular and philosophical thought......and not religous admonitions carved in stone.
     
  20. SpeedoGuy

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    May 18, 2004
    Messages:
    4,229
    Albums:
    1
    Likes Received:
    10
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Pacific Northwest, USA
    Imperial Hubris: Why the West is Losing the War on Terror by Anonymous. This is a hard-nosed appraisal of the west's war against radical Islaman by an author who claims to be career CIA analyst. The book draws a gloomy outlook on current events in Afghanistan and Iraq with worse to come in the future. The author makes the case that radical Islam is more virile and widespread than western leaders believe and that its only a matter of time before Islamic radicals like Al Qaeda commit more mass terrorism, probably involving nuclear weapons.
     
Draft saved Draft deleted