Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Who's Looking Out for You--#70 finished

I really wanted to get to 70 books read for the year.  I doubt I will finish another one by the end of the year but I guess I could still.  This is one of the earlier Bill O'Reilly books and it didn't really change anything about my thoughts on him.  A good reporter/newsman that leans to the conservative side of things--a good fit at Fox.  Of the talking heads at Fox, I like him the most and it really isn't close--Hannity and Greta could just go away for my taste.  Half of their shows is defending what was said on other shows and lobbing softball questions to conservatives and talking over the liberals they find to bring on.  O'Reilly generally gives everyone on the show a chance to talk and also hits them with some decent questions at least some of the time.  Book was okay like his others that I read.

I have had this book on the shelf for a couple years now and just hadn't gotten around to it but since I needed a quick read on a shorter length book, it fit the bill.  I really wanted to get 70 books read.  I did post this book on PBS but there are 140+ copies a head of it so it won't be moving anytime soon if at all.  I am also reading a short story book, Where the Road Bottoms Out which is a little different and was published in 1995 so stories written earlier so kind of nice to step back a little on them.  I also started reading the last of the Earth's Children series by Jean Auel(Clan of the Cave Bear), this book is The Land of the Painted Caves.  Only 70 pages in and I have slipped right back to where it was when I read the last book a couple years ago.  I really enjoy this series and while only early on this book, I am enjoying it too.  I will probably be starting another book tonight or soon as well.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

The Boys in the Trees--#69 finished

A different sort of book about the 1800's people in the US/Canadian area.  A family that you don't fully understand with some interesting characters is killed by their father.  While it was hinted at that he was embezzling money from his workplace, not sure why the family didn't run or at least the dad.  Instead dad kills wife and 2 girls and not himself, he is instead hung after a trial.  Book was written from several different points of view through time.  There was a short Q&A with the author at the end and she explains why she wrote it this way--basically this was the type of book she wanted to write.  I think I would have preferred more info on all the characters, but obviously I am not the writer.

I am almost to 70 books read for the year, only 1 to go.  I have already posted this book on PBS there are like 4 copies ahead of it.  I am reading the Bill O'Reilly book and another short story book and will look to add a 3rd and maybe 4th tonight.

Saturday, December 15, 2012

G is for Gumshoe--#68 finished

The next in line of the Kinsey Milhone detective series.  Good stuff as always.  Moves fast and interesting things happening.  I think I read H a few years back but can't find it right now in my lists--will have to check later.  I think I have "I" already around the house so might get started on in kind of soon.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

501 Minutes to Christ--#67 finished

This is a short story book by Poe Ballantine.  It is about his life and I really enjoy his writing and stories.  How he truly struggled and sacrificed to become who he is and a writer.  This is the 3rd book that I have read of his and in each I keep almost cheering him on as a writer and hope he achieves a strong level of success.  I found the first book I read of his at a library sale and bought it simply because his now hometown is Chadron, NE and since I am from NE it is almost impossible for me to not buy the book.  The other books of his, I actually have a 4th just haven't gotten to reading yet, have all come from  PBS and I feel a little guilty about that since I haven't actually purchased any of his books in a way he would get credit or even royalty from it.  Hopefully a 5th book comes out and I will buy it for that reason.

This book along with the author's other books is a keeper for me.  I will not be passing it along.  I am still reading 3 other books--hoping to get to 70 read for the year.  Reading G is for Gumshoe, The Boys in the Trees and started a Bill O'Reilly book Who's Looking Out for You?  I might look around tonight for another book but probably won't start since want to get these 3 closer to finished.

Sunday, December 9, 2012

No Greater Courage--#66 finished

What a great read, this along with To Make Men Free are two very good and very readable books about battles of the Civil War.  I have not read a lot of this type of Civil War books--I haven't read a lot of the Civil War in general.  These are I guess historical fiction where the writer takes what he can from the historical record and pieces together a fictional account of what happened.  These were both very readable books and do a great job of introducing you to the main characters and you get an idea of what they were like beyond the troop movements and battle plans.  I wish the author had more of these Civil War books out there unfortunately these are his only two.

I have posted it on PBS, there is only 1 copy ahead of it.  I would expect it would move at some point but who knows how long a wait.  I am still reading G is for Gumshoe and The Boys in the Trees and started 501 Minutes for Christ--a short story book by Poe Ballantine, good stuff.  I will probably look around & see about starting another book tonight as well.  I would like to get to 70 read for the year but not sure I will do that--might have to find a short book.

Monday, December 3, 2012

Obama's American--#65 finished

This is kind of a followup book from the author's earlier Obama book The Roots of Obama's Rage.  Some new stuff and his argument makes sense in the way he presents it but when you step back and think about it, it just doesn't hold much water.  I agree with his basic idea that Obama has some anti-colonialsim in him, passed down from his fathers & his mothers beliefs.  I will also agree that some of the people that influenced him throughout his life were similarly anti-colonialists.  I stop there though and cannot bridge that a person who wants to set America back to become a 3rd World type nation would ever be elected President.

First off the President sets some policies and has some leadership roles but his cabinet and the whole Democratic Party are also there.  If any of these people thought that Obama was trying to accomplish what this book says, they would be speaking out and that is not happening.  I agree that Obama has a different world view that what people may have thought when electing him both times but I don't see it as fundamentally different to where he wants basically America to fail.

Oh well some interesting thoughts and some decent history of Obama.  I really was struck with the whole idea that when his mom sent him to Hawaii for her parents to raise, that he was really abandon at that point by both parents.  I knew about that but hadn't attached abandon to it, but I think the is probably an accurate view of how a 10 year old would feel at that point.

I will be posting it on PBS at some point, I think there are 100 or so WL for it, so have plenty of time to post it.  I haven't been getting any of my WL books posted so I have really slowed down on PBS at this point.  No sense in mailing books off if the ones I want aren't being posted.  I am not sure if it is just slow because of the craziness around the holiday season or something else.  I have about a half dozen WL books that I have read but not posted.  I might just want till January and see what happens then.

Still reading the Civil War book and the Kinsey Milhone book and the Boys in Trees book.  I need to finish those 3 and 2 more by the end of Dec to get to 70 books read.  Not sure if I will get that done or not, will just have to see.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Exposure--#64 finished

An interesting read about the over-exposure of Hollywood stars in the future kind of way.  Hollywood talent agencies completely over use stars on digital billboards.  They have even developed digital images of past stars or as they call them restars.  There became a kind of terrorist group working against Hollywood and this billboard thing.  It was an interesting and kind of thought provoking read, not a great read but certainly interesting.  I read it in just a few days but it didn't seem like a page turner but I guess it was at least results wise.  Of course, I was reading it over a long weekend with Thanksgiving so I had the time to put into it.

I am still reading the Civil War book and just started G is for Gumshoe, the next Kinsey Milhone book. I will probably look at starting another book tonight as well.  I have posted Exposure on PBS and there is one copy ahead of it.  I will guess it will move at some point but who knows how long it will take.

Friday, November 23, 2012

Goodnight Steve McQueen--#63 finished

This is the 3rd book by this author, Louise Wener, that I have enjoyed.  She was a singer in Britain that made the charts and has switched over to writing.  I haven't listened to any of her songs or singing but I do enjoy her books.  This one is about a couple that has been together for a while and has kind of stagnated.  She has a good job and is basically supporting him while he works part time and is in a band seemingly going nowhere.  She gives him an ultimatum that within a few months something has to change--band has to get something going or he has to find a job.  The band scraps together a tour as the warmup act to a pop band/singer that he, Danny, knows.  They don't get paid but get exposure.  All the while she, Alison, has been transferred to Belgian.  Relationship problems, band problems, goofy band members and other kind of strange/quirky friends.  Throw in just kind of crazy thoughts and it is an interesting read.

I have posted it on PBS, there were already 7 copies on the system so I doubt it moves for a while but good book but no need to keep it either.  I just started Exposure the other day and pushed a head on No Greater Courage--just pushed over 100 pages into it today.  I will probably look to add a 3rd book tonight as well.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Longshot--#62 finished

I really enjoyed this book about a basketball player, Lance Allred.  The sentence after the title describes it better than I could hope to--The Adventures of a Deaf Fundamentalist Morman Kid and His Journey to the NBA.  A really good book that gave great insight into his basketball life.  While his NBA career only lasted 3 games, the work he put into and the trials he went through were interesting to read about.  It is a tough life to be a fringe professional like that, I don't think too many people realize that.  They see the pros in sports at the highest levels making millions and millions and don't realize the many layers below that that are living in near poverty to play a game they love for a chance at more.  Lance wrote the book and his writing style is also very good.  He is in process of writing other books of fiction as well.

I will probably be posting it on PBS at some point, I think there are 3 or 4 WL for it.  I have been kind of saving up the other WL books that I have read to see if I could bundle them to save on postage and/or trouble of mailing.  Since there are not many WL for this book, will probably just post & mail.  I am now down to 2 books reading--Goodnight Steve McQueen, which I think I am around 100 pages to go--could finish it this weekend and No Greater Courage, the Civil War book, but only like 40 pages into it.  I will be looking for a 3rd book to start tonight.

Monday, November 19, 2012

The Soul Catcher--#61 finished

This is the 3rd in Alex Kava's Maggie O'Dell series.  It is pretty good, a little violent but a good page turner.  I have a few more in this series so I had ordered and only gotten this book a month or so ago.  The characters are good and you can see story and the characters continuing to build for the next book or books.  This one involved her mom more than the others and also opened up more questions of her family which will continue in the next books.  I will probably try to get on those books a little quicker than I have been.  I a good read and a good page turner.

At this point I am keeping this series so won't be posting it on PBS.  I won't be adding another book right not, still reading Goodnight Steve McQueen, Longshot by a basketball player Allred and started but hardly read the next Civil War book, but can't remember the title.  Four is really too many books for me to be reading at once, two or three seems to be better so none get pushed out of it completely.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Zone One--#60 finished

Wow, what a very good book, even if it is an after the majority of the human population becomes zombies.  At times intense, hopeful, dreadful, gross, shocking, confusing--the book really covers about every emotion and thought.  It really makes you wonder.  I have read a couple other zombie books, The Cell, a Stephen King book a few years ago, The Passage--the first in a trilogy but this is really the best of them.  I really enjoyed this book in a kind of sick or perverse way you would enjoy a zombie and life as we know it ends kind of book.

I will probably post it on PBS at some point but not right away.  I think the WL for it is over 200 so will be in no hurry to move it.  I am down to one book now Goodnight Steve McQueen.  I had started one but gave up after 20 or so pages.  I will grab another one yet tonight but probably won't start it till tomorrow.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

My Mother's Lover--#59 finished

I finished this book tonight but still not sure how I feel about it.  I had been reading it for maybe a month or not quite.  The only child, a son, of a pioneering woman in South Africa, looks back at his mom's life and the times of Africa starting in the '50s to present day.  It is a fiction account but at first I thought it was non-fiction.  Very believable characters and an interesting story of them and Africa.  Still overall I am thinking it was just okay.

I will probably be posting it on PBS sometime soon, there is 1 WL for it.  It has had 1 WL for a while now--maybe a year since I picked up the book at a library sale.  I would like to mail it off if I can.

I am still reading Zone One and also Goodnight Steve McQueen.  I will be looking for a 3rd book to start tonight or within the next couple of nights.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

The Girl She Used To Be--#58 finished

This started as an interesting book about a now lady in Witness Protection.  Her and her parents witnessed a mob boss killing someone--she was 6 at the time and witnesses placed them in area and government basically twisted their arms to testify.  Mob boss still gets off though and family lives in fear for their lives.  Daughter really struggles with idea of living a lie and at one point announces who she really is to get back at her parents--hour later her parents are killed by mob.  She is now 26 and really tired of running and hates her protectors and hates how she cannot live her life.  The mob boss son steps into the picture and he is cute and hot and all that.  She goes with him lives the life for a couple days and everything falls apart when she meets his family.

Started good and got sappy at the end.  Oh well still not a bad read altogether.  I will be posting it on PBS at some point.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Far to Go--#57 finished

This is a very good book.  The book just felt real the whole time I was reading it.  A Jewish family in Czechoslovakia right before WWII when Hitler had his sights on the country.  It was part of Hitler's liebensraum--living room.  It was basically handed over before WWII by the Europeans and Chamberlain.  All of this history going on while this Jewish family that was actually fairly well to do and how they were squeezed at the time.  A very good book.

I am too tired right now to think about saying more, maybe I will add to this later.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

The End of Mr. Y--#56 finished

This is the 2nd book I have read by this author Scarlett Thomas, Popco was the first.  From what I can remember I liked Popco quite a bit, this one just okay.  It was really kind of slow and a lot of what they talked about just wasn't interesting enough to keep me at this book.  Still lots to think about but I don't think it was enough reality to carry it through for me.  I like the characters and the idea of this book, but just wasn't fast paced or I wasn't smart enough to find it interesting all the way through.

I will post it on PBS, there are still 2 WL for it so hope to mail off next week.  I also started My Mother's Lovers, a book about Africa and the author's interesting mother I guess.  Also reading Far to Go and Zone One as well.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Hero of the Underground--#55 finished

This is former NE football player Jason Peter's story.  Mostly his story of his severe drug addiction with stuff from his playing days mixed in.  A shocking and good read that gives a very good idea how drugs can mess up someone's life.  Starting with pain pills that he took to sleep and then wake up and get through a practice or a game.  Then from what sounds like boredom when outside of football, he gets into recreational drugs.  Then after his career ended early from injuries and again bored and no clue what to do with life, he turns to drugs.  A couple of detox trips where he immediately goes back into drugs and even into harder stuff after hearing stories at these places.  Still doing pain pills, cocaine, crack, heroin and mixing them, even some meth since nothing else was there towards the end.

While the book is shocking, I have a really hard time feeling sorry for him, the writer.  He has all the money he should ever need and is a smart person and just pisses it away.  Our prisons are full of people that were on drugs to a much lessor extent than he was, maybe he is lucky but that doesn't mean I will like or respect him.  I hope for his sake his life is good still and no relapses but relapsing will be something he will probably fight the rest of his life.

I have posted it on PBS, there is 1 copy a head of it so I would think it will move at some point.  Still reading The End of Mr Y, getting closer there and a Far Place To Go--or something like that.  I also have Zone One, I think that is the title, a zombie book I think but I am only a very few pages into it so far.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Secret Girl--#54 finished

This is a tragic and very moving book.  A true story of a well to do family in Baltimore area that has twin girls with one of the twins having hydrocephalus, water on the brain.  This was in the early '60s I believe and just a few years short of the medical improvements for the child.  The family made the decision to have the little girl institutionalized.  The original thought was the girl would at most live a year.  The institutionalizing is upsetting but this was a different time and the mother was a little unstable, okay.  What followed though was an almost total disregard for this child Annie.  The book is written by an older sister that didn't find out until around 12 or 13 that she had a sister in an institution.

Again this is a well to do family, in one passage the author talks about the research she did into where Annie was living.  When Annie was around 4, she had outgrown the newborn and infant care house and needed to be moved.  The family applied for a spot at a state institution but would only pay what they were paying at the infant house.  While the family and director were sending letters back and forth, the mother, father & the oldest--the author--took a trip to Italy & Europe for a couple weeks.  This is a family where on the mother(and maybe both sides) that can trace back to the earliest Americans--a real blue blooded family.  The mother almost never visited her child and the father only rarely--about once a year--all while they were only minutes away.  Again upsetting but family wants to distance themselves--really upsetting but in their shoes and all, but when the state asked about sending Annie into foster care for her benefit on not being in an institution and into a more socially appropriate setting--they refused.

After reading these parts of the book, I am really trying my best to not judge the parents.  I certainly don't want to presume hell but that almost seems the case.  Purgatory would be a blessing.  I keep reminding myself that people are complex beyond even our comprehending them and this book only touches on a silver of the lives of the parents so balancing could appear elsewhere in their life--I can only hope for their sake that is the case.

Anyway, the oldest sister was successful in many ways but also screwed up in as many--an alcoholic to the point where it nearly ruined her life.  The author doesn't come out and say it but it seems as though Annie in a way was almost part of the reason she was able to be sober for many years.  Again people are complex and Holly or Brucie as she was also called, was quitting as a lawyer to become a writer, was divorcing her husband and father of their 2 sons and it sounds like it was a bitter divorce as well as she was trying to connect with Annie.  Lots going on and all that.  In the epilogue she mentions one of her sons dying tragically in Africa at age 11 and she became a drunk all over again.  This was also at a time when Annie's health was dropping and eventually Annie died.  A sad sad ending to the story.  This book is a real lesson I think for people to see that all people must be respected.  It had to be a very difficult book for the author to research her sister's life and observe through the research the almost monstrous actions of her parents.

This is a well traveled PBS book, I am the 6th owner and have already posted it.  It is the only copy on the system so I expect it will be moving soon.  I gave some thought to keeping it but again figured that this book was too moving to keep--let it be spread out to others.

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Stuff White People Like--#53 finished

This is one of those books that started as a blog and got enough attention that it became a book.  A great story but does read basically like a blog entry.  Funny stuff here, lots of observations about weird habits of white people.  The author is British or partially or something, he does really explain in the book but maybe on the blog--I didn't check that far into it.  It seems to be about a generation behind me, so I can laugh at it but I also realize that if someone did this 10 to 15 years ago, I would probably be nailed.  Still some stuff here that I fit but the test at the end my white person % was pretty low.

A friend at work had picked up this book and liked it and passed it along.  I will be returning it to him.  This one does have like 50 WL for it on PBS but this one won't be going there.  I snuck it in in time to be done for Sept too on the last day.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

In My Time--#52 finished

This is Dick Cheney's memoir.  It seems that sometimes I am one of the few Dick Cheney fans out there.  I really enjoyed him at the 2 VP debates he did and his politics while conservative were also tough and steady.  As the VP has was very much tied down to what President wanted and to me it seems he would have made quite a few different decisions that President Bush made.  Of course Cheney's loyalty to those around him would not let him express that in this book.  He did take shots at Condi Rice & Colin Powell but that was after explaining he truly respected them but disagreed with some of their decisions.  Well maybe a little harsher than that.  I do want to read now President Bush's book that I have that goes over some his major decisions as President but that might have to wait a month or so--that would probably be too much politics right away.

From reading this memoir I respect Cheney even more.  It really shows how his experience came to bear in the Bush Presidency and how Cheney was an important piece of the President.  I really liked this book.  For the most part he did not take many shots at President Obama but did point out the differences as well as how President Obama has had to backtrack on issues that he campaigned on.

All in all liked the book and not sure at this point if it will be a keeper or not.  Right now leaning toward keeper.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Swag--#51 finished

Well, it certainly took long enough for me to finish my next book.  This is a 1970s, book about a couple guys who decide to become robbers.  I mean the book is in the 1970s but also it was written in the '70s.  A good read, a different time different mindsets, kind of interesting.  Really not much here other than a Elmore Leonard book, only 2nd one I have read and both were pretty good.  I will have to keep looking for his books.

I am still working on the Dick Cheney book, In My Time, I am just around 100 pages to go.  I hope to have it finished by the end of the month.  I am also still reading The End of Mr. Y, it is taking longer and slower than I had hoped.  I am past 100 pages but still under 150 I think.  Reading in Sept has been very sporadic and it shows with only having 3 finished and all smaller books too.

Saturday, September 8, 2012

The Color of Night--#50 finished

This a very dark book about a woman that seems to be part of a hippie scene like the Mansons that she somehow after killings gets away and sort of disappears.  She has a female lover that she then recognizes in a 9/11 scene on TV and contacts her.  Eventually she travels to meet her in NY city where her lover has become part of the establishment but is dying of cancer.  Throw in screwed up childhood with sex scenes with her older brother as well as knife play and killing animals, well this is a really screwed up life.  It is dark, it is ugly, this person and her actions have not really changed or developed, she is screwed up and scary as she was as a teenager.  Her brother went to Vietnam and came back even more screwed up and eventually killed his family and died in a police standoff before he had a chance to burn down the house he was in.  There is really not a redeeming person in this book.

I have a very hard time likely this book.  I don't like the writer's style of jumbling back and forth and never really getting to a point.  The characters are tough and you are not supposed to like them but for those reasons I can't really like this book either.

Well, I will post it at some point on PBS & mail it off, there are 6 WL for it.  Still reading the Dick Cheney book and The End of Mr Y.  I also started a 1970s action book Swag.  Not sure if I will get into a 4th book yet or not.

Monday, September 3, 2012

People Who Live at the End of Dirt Roads--#49 finished

A short story book.  It is all old time sappy stuff about how life was so much better in small towns & in farms.  While some of it is sort of true it is surrounded by all the sappy stuff that it is just sort of mindless drivel.  I had higher hopes for this book but oh well.

I will be posting it on PBS at some point, but not tonight--it is too late & I am going to bed.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Cardboard Gods--#48 finished

I received this book through PBS a couple years ago and finally took the time to read it.  I had sort of followed the writers blog for a while & when I heard he wrote a book off his blog idea, I put it on my WL.  His blog is now the same name as his book--although I haven't checked it out for a couple years.  In it he would pull out one of his old baseball cards and examine the player, his uniform and background and wrap all that with something that went on in his life.  He has lead an interesting life, at least by my standards but I don't think I would call it exciting.  The book was more about his life and his struggles to fit in and become something.  There was less focus on the cards and more focus on his life, which makes sense.  I did miss some of his crazy insights about the baseball cards though that he threw out there in the blog.  I will have to check on his blog & see if it is still running and how it has changed.

The book itself kind of reads like a John Irving novel, I just read his Twisted River--back in January I believe and it seems similar at least to the Irving character's mid 30s age.  This writer Josh Wilker hasn't gotten to the level of success yet that Irving gave his character.  Now that I rethink it, maybe not that similar but the book had kind of that feel to it with baseball cards instead of wrestling--Irving likes wrestling.  Overall I liked this book and really hope the writer becomes successful.  I didn't get a good feeling either way on Josh's life--good or bad.  Lots of issues and hope for the best.  Wonder if in 10-15 years another book will be coming out?

I am not sure if I will be posting it or not.  Right now I think it is a keeper for me.  His blog is one of the reasons I have this blog and still think about writing something.  I don't think I can mail this book off.  It will go by the Adventures in Mainstreaming that also gets partial credit.

I am reading The End of Mr Y and also started The Color of Night.  I hope to add a 3rd book later today.

Monday, August 20, 2012

Consider This, Señora--#47 finished

I really enjoyed this book about Americans that start a housing development in the 1960s on a hill overlooking a lake close to a poor Mexican city in the interior of the country.  A good story about the people that moved there and their lives.  The book was colorful and insightful for both the foreigners that moved in and the locals that have lived there for generations.  It is a very good and interesting read,  I really enjoyed it.  I wasn't sure what the book would be like when I started, I feared more romance and there was very little of that.  This book really surprised me in a very good way.

I will not be posting it on PBS, the spine is cracking in one spot.  Now I must decide if this book is a keeper or if I will pass it along elsewhere--right now leaning toward keeper.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Love Kills--#46 finished

This is the last in the 4 book series about a detective in Pasadena, CA--Nan Vining.  The first 3 books in the series dealt with Nan tracking down a serial killer that had almost killed her.  The third book she kills the serial killer but I guess the author wanted to tie up some loose ends so a 4th book was written.  This book basically tied up the loose ends and put the detectives in the middle of an almost Tom Cruise Scientology or cult investigation.  Don't get me wrong, it had nothing to do with Scientology but the case and characters seemed similar to me an ways.  Not too bad, the series needed to get wrapped up and this book did the job.  The author has started another series, but not sure if I really want to get into it.  I have plenty of other books to read so will probably pass at this point.

Reading Consider This, Señora and Cardboard Gods.  I also just started The End of Mr Y a book I started once before but didn't get through much at al before shelving it for later & later is now I guess.  I have posted Love Kills on PBS and it is only the 2nd copy on the system so I expect it to move at some point.  Since I have all 4 books in series I could also offer a deal like 2 credits for all 4 books just to move them--won't do right now but maybe down the line.

Friday, August 10, 2012

"F" is for Fugitive--#45 finished

I am still working my way through these books in order and F is the first one this year that I read.  I need to start reading 3 for 4 a year otherwise it is going to take a long long time to get through the series.  I read this book way back in 1998 according to my books read sheets and I did remember parts of it but also thought the ending was different--which is a good thing since I didn't know what happened till I read it.  I think I was confused with one of the other books.  This is just a good series and every book I have read is enjoyable.  I am not sure if I have G or not--if not might have to get it from PBS.

I am still reading Love Kills and just started Cardboard Gods.  I also started Try This, Señora or some thing like that but after reading 20 pages I haven't touched it again, maybe this weekend.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Radical Chic & Mau-Mauing the Flak Catchers--#44 finished

These are two Tom Wolfe essays or commentaries written in 1970 dealing with race relations at the time.  In Radical Chic he looks at the very upper class white liberals in New York City that host "parties" or "meetings" where radical groups are brought in as guests and a sort of debate and fundraiser occurs.  He points at some of the absurdities of these events and basically calls out the liberals for their white guilt.

In Mau-Mauing the Flak Catchers he examines how poor or ghetto groups have learned to game the governmental bureaucracy system to get funding and "jobs" for the poor.  He looks at how these groups use intimidation and again a sort of white guilt to get money for their group.  I have seen reviews that call these essays funny but I think they show what has become the problems in government and has lead to groups like the Tea Party hating the idea of tax money being wasted.

Good stuff.  I really liked these essays and found them to be surprising that Wolfe went against the establishment the way he did back in early 1970s.

I have posted it on PBS, it is the only copy on system at least for this edition.  I expect it to move soon but even if not soon it will move at some point.

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

The Secret Soldier--#43 finished

This is the 2nd John Wells series book that I have read & I really liked this one.  If I remember without checking back, I think the Midnight House was just okay but this book really stepped up with a realistic scenario and storyline and that just made the book that much more interesting.  I will have to find the earlier books in the John Well series and read them forward.  Okay about this book, an new terrorist group in Saudi Arabia forms to disrupt the SA government and backstabbing happens within the group as well.  With a still ongoing "Arab Spring" happening in Syria and elsewhere, this book in a way asks the question of why nothing is happening like that in SA.  I really interesting read and lots of good info on the Middle East.

I will be posting it on PBS probably soon, I think there are around 15 WL for it.  It will be a nice book to read for whoever is next.   I am not far with Love Kills and just started Radical Chic & Mau-Mauing the Flak Catchers--an early Tom Wolfe book/short stories.  Also just started F is for Fugitive the next one for me in order.  I had actually read this one back in 1998 and from the first few pages I kind of remember stuff but being that long ago a re-read is in order.

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Growgirl--#42 finished

Growgirl by Heather Donahue, she is the actress from The Blair Witch Project.  This is her book about her life of a couple years ago, when she decided to give up acting and instead hooked up with a guy & group of pot growers in CA.  She never really addresses her finances in real dollars just says she basically has no or little money.  I thought she would have made a bundle on the movie or at least between it and the second one enough to live comfortably.  Who knows.  Well she ends up meeting this guy who she dates who is into this whole hippie community sense of growing pot--really kind of bizarre life/lifestyle.  She breaks up with him but is already setup with a rental property with the garage all decked out for growing pot.  She gets into all of the details of it both growing and how it is quasi-legal in CA.  She does get out of it in the end but that is also the end of the book so not sure where she is at right now.  I think it was an okay read if you are interested in pot--I'm not so not so much my cup of tea.  Some more details about her life before would have helped but I guess the pot was the focus not the before life.

I have posted it on PBS & it has already been accepted so I will be mailing it off this week.  I am now reading The Secret Soldier and Love Kills.  I will start a 3rd book, maybe tonight if I can pick one out quick.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Rather Die Fighting--#41 finished

A very good true story account of the Jewish partisan fighters in Poland during WWII.  Very interesting part of WWII that I had heard little about.  Just adds to what an amazing or maybe shocking time in the world that was--not only was the whole world at war there was also an extermination of a people being attempted by a fascist dictator.  It makes me want to re-read some of my old college books about this time and the concentration/extermination camps then.  A very good and easy read.

I have already posted this book back onto PBS.  It is the only copy on the system so it should move soon I am guessing.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Daughters of the North--#40 finished

A futuristic book of England and I guess the world, where everything goes to crap.  A woman around 30, leaves her life and walks to an off the grid commune of women.  This commune has been surviving on it's own for several years while the rest of society is locked into war, famine and failing government.    An interesting read and a short read, only a little over 200 pages.  It gives the reader something to think about but lots left unsaid or untouched upon.  A very different ending than I expected but the ending was also kind of abrupt, I really kind of liked it in that sense.  It was different than the other stuff I have been reading so it was a nice quick change of pace.

There is 1 WL for Daughters of the North so I have posted it, hope to get it in the mail this week.  I just started The Secret Soldier, a book I just received from a PBS member.  I am still reading Growgirl, 155 pages in with around 130 remaining--different and so far just okay but get through it.  Also started reading Rather Die Fighting a WWII memoir, only 20 or so pages into it.

Friday, July 20, 2012

The Story of Edgar Sawtelle--#39 finished

This is another book that took me far too long to read.  I will have to check back to see about when I started it but I am thinking it was March, could have even been Feb.  This is a book that I have a hard time saying I enjoyed, I think instead I endured it.  There are parts that were interesting but all around those parts were stuff that I just didn't care about.  Many questions only get answered in with half answers and other things become questions that kind of get ignored.  Again though some interesting stuff in here but not enough for me to like the book.

My copy is non-postable per PBS requirements, there is a water stain on the bottom of the book.  I will have to make it go away some other way--give to library or take to used bookstore for credit.  There are like 70 some copies already on PBS so it wasn't going to move from there anyway.

I am still reading Growgirl or something like that--the Blair Witch girl/actor becomes a pot grower.  Not too exciting either but not so bad.  I also started Daughters of the North, a future--isn't so bright--istic book of England.  I will be looking to start another either tonight or tomorrow also.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

The Memory of Running--#38 finished

This was the book that I picked up and started late Saturday night.  I really hooked me.  It is a real good story, maybe a little unbelievable at points but still very good.  The main person Smithy is just kind of knocking his way through life when suddenly both his parents die in a car accident and he is almost forced to deal with his crappy life.  He deals with it by sort of starting to ride his old bike again but even  then it is starts and stops.  He is unsure of himself the whole way through the book.  While all of this is going on with him, the other main story line is his sister Bethany and her troubles.  A kind of creepy voice pulls her out of a normal life and leads her to run away and into trouble her whole life.  The way Smithy kind of describes it at times is almost exorcist like, the movie.  Really creepy and scary.  Right after burying his parents, Smithy gets a letter from Los Angles that Bethany has died and her body is there waiting for him.  His dad had sent out dental records all around the county for this very reason.  So in order to get to CA he just kind of decides to ride the bike--no real planning or anything involved. Some interesting characters and happenings along the way, some personal growth and mending and old relationship as well.  Very good book.

I was thinking about keeping it but I really have too many books and this is one with several copies so could always order it back if needed.  I will post it but don't expect it will be moving but will leave on shelf for now.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Even Cowgirls get the Blues--#37 finished

It took a while and pretty much the whole way through the book I just didn't like it.  I have to say it was basically just a stupid book and mostly seems a waste of time.  All I can figure is that in the 1970s when it first came out it must have been cutting edge and maybe new stuff.  Lesbianism, cowgirls, weirdo stuff just isn't stuff that shocks people today but I am guessing it did back when written.  Sorry, I really did not like this book.  It took me months to read it but it was finally a few days ago where I just told myself to get it done and read the last 200 pages in about 3 days.  I am glad I did only because it is now done.

It is a book that I got from PBS but it is really a nonpostable book so I will not be sending it out.  I will be getting donated to a library sale or maybe traded for credit at the used bookstore nearby.  I really don't want the book around long so it should be moving off soon.

I am still reading Edgar Sawtelle and probably need to do something similar where I only read it extensively for a few days to get it close to the end.  Not right now but I will probably have to do that.  I did just start Growgirl about the Blair Witch girl's life where she is now into growing medical pot in CA.  I will be looking for another book tonight as well.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

The Ice Queen--#36 finished

June was a slow month & July has started the same for my reading.  The Ice Queen is kind of interesting.  The main character really has some issues she is dealing with and meets lots of interesting people along the way.  She also at the end reconnects with her brother & gets to know his wife.  It was interesting but also bordering on simply not believable.  Not really my taste in a book but that is fine, it was at least once more interesting.

I am still on the other 2, Even Cowgirls get the Blues and Edgar Sawtelle.  I am making progress with each but it is still very slow.  I can't say that I really like either of them as well so that is making it tougher.  I will be starting a 3rd book either tonight or sometime soon.

Monday, June 25, 2012

The Deepest Cut--#35 finished

This is the 3rd in the series of 4, at least I think it is 4.  It is a quick read.  I kind of like the series and it seems to have come to a nice ending with the serial killer being caught/killed.  I am not sure what the next book is about or how it continues but I will probably grab it and read it sometime in the next few months.  This book did a nice job of finishing things up and getting to some kind of conclusion, although I wasn't really happy with the surprise ending of the book.  I guess I will take the ending that I don't like that at least wraps things up over a more predictable ending and the series just ending awkwardly.  I am not sure that really makes sense but oh well.

I have posted it on PBS and there is 1 copy ahead of it.  I think it will move at some point but might take a while.  Still reading those other books and might look to add another one tonight.  I would like to get one more finished this month but not sure that will happen at this point.  35 read for 6 months isn't bad though.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Demonic--#34 finished

It has been a slow month for reading for me.  A couple books that I have been reading are just plain slow, throw in busy at work, summer so other stuff going on well, it has been slow reading.  I did finish this Ann Coulter book and I was surprised how much I liked it.  She looked back at the French Revolution and compared it to the US Revolution and how they really were not similar.  The French Revolution did play a role in the US Rev in that the US leaders wanted to avoid what was happening in France at that time.  The other kind of central thought was the mob mentality of the liberals, not sure I completely buy this, at least for the majority of the Dem party but there is certainly a segment of the party that likes the ideas of mobs.

Like I said I was surprised because I have seen Ann Coulter on Fox News several times and while I think a lot of what she says is for shock or humor, I wasn't really sure about her intelligence.  This was a good book with some interesting points.  I will have to see about reading other books by her.

I have already posted it on PBS so will be passing it along early next week.  I am still reading those 2 slow books, Edgar Sawtelle and Even Cowgirls get the Blues.  I worked on both during vacation but didn't make much headway and neither had much going on that hooked me to the point of wanting to read more than a few pages at a time.  I started The Deepest Cut by Dianne Emley, this is the 3rd in the series and have read quite a bit in the short time so far.  I don't think I am starting a 4th book right now, maybe in a couple days but I really want to get The Deepest Cut done before end of month and also make some head way on one of the other two.

Sunday, June 10, 2012

The Jefferson Key--#33 finished

June has been a slow month for reading for me, probably because I have been busy with many other things.  It is nice though to have a Cotton Malone book, quick action adventure with short chapters so easy to start and stop when only have a few minutes at a time to read.  I think I liked the other Cotton Malone books a little better than this one but it was still a mostly fun read.  A missing bad person at the end points to the adversary in the next book I guess.  Still a fun book and a fun series to read.  I missed the  first couple books in the series so I might at some point have to go back and read them.

I am still working on Edgar Sawtelle and Demonic and have been reading Even Cowgirls Get the Blues.  The Cowgirls book is one that I have really not liked since the beginning and had basically stopped reading a couple times but have just kept at it.  I am not that far into it only 130 pages but have been reading it for a couple months I guess, embarrassingly slow but oh well.  I will try to finish Demonic before vacation starts and take the other 2 along with a couple others to chose from for vacation reads.

Sunday, June 3, 2012

The Way People Run--#32 finished

This is a short story book and the stories are really very good.  There is a lot packed into each story, with something memorable about each one.  Some good emotions about some tough times the characters are going through.  I am not a big short story person but did enjoy this book.

My reading has really slipped off lately, just not staying awake and reading as much as I was before.  I am still working on 4 books but not moving much on any of them.  I finished this one up because it was the shortest I think.  I think I am going to force myself not to start another till I get much closer to wrapping up a couple more first.  Still reading The Jefferson Key, Edgar Sawtelle and Demonic.  I have also been reading Even Cowgirls Get the Blues--so far I really don't like the book and have been close to quitting it probably a dozen times.  It has been a couple months like this and have now gotten past 100 pages and figure I will stick through it--maybe.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Composed--#31 finished

This is a memoir by Rosanne Cash daughter of Johnny Cash & his first wife, I think the oldest daughter too.  She went into the music business first as a songwriter and then to performer and has been very successful.  An interesting read in how she has grown and how her prespective has changed over time.  I am not a country music fan so I really had no knowledge of her except as Johnny Cash's daughter.  This book gave some insight into her and the whole family dynamic, beyond what the Johnny Cash movie gave.

I will be posting it on PBS at some point but probably not for a week or two yet.  Still too many credits and not enough of my WL books coming through.  Still reading Edgar Sawtelle, Demonic and added Jefferson Key.  I might add another before the weekend also.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Welcome to the Great Mysterious--#30 finished

This is the 2nd book by the author Lorna Landvik that I have read.  I have enjoyed both of them, kind of a quirky different feel to the books than some of the other fiction that I read.  This book was about twin sisters, one that is a famous actress and the other a wife of a professor, she might be a professor as well but not completely sure.  The married sister has a son, Rich with Down syndrome so that is really what attracted me to the book.  It is a good book, nothing great or outstanding but I think the author did a nice job of handling Rich and his friend Conrad that has CP I think.  I am still interested in reading other books by the author.

I will be keeping this book, because of the topic and also because the copy I have looks like it has a small water stain.  Water stains are big no nos for PBS so I cannot ship it off.  That is okay because I want to keep it anyway.

Still reading too many other books but moving along with them.  Probably not starting anything new for a couple days at least to move some of these other books along.

Monday, May 14, 2012

The Apostle--#29 finished

This is a Brad Thor thriller book with Scot Harvath back in action.  I read one of the series earlier and found this book.  It is a good book for what it is, action, saving the day type stuff.  I will probably keep at reading one of these once in a while because they are generally fun and kind of a quick read.

This is a nonpostable book so can't send through PBS.  I will probably donate it off somewhere at some point.

Saturday, May 5, 2012

The Secret Speech--#28 finished

From what I remember, and I didn't look back yet, I think I liked Child 44.  This is the 2nd book and 2nd in series about the main character Leo a former KGB(or what it was called under Stalin) agent who was able to switch out and investigate homicides in the USSR in the 1950s.  It is an okay read, but for me just too much stuff that just isn't believable goes on.  The characters just seem that much flatter than in the 1st book.  Now I am not saying this is a terrible book or anything but rather the promise that the first book showed, the 2nd could not keep up.  It will be interesting to see how the 3rd book goes, I think there is one but not completely sure about that though.

I have posted it on PBS, there were like 7 WL for it.  I also posted Down the Nile too and have an order for The Imaginary Girlfriend, so I will be shipping off some books next week.  I still have too many credits so I need to be ordering some books as well.  My WL books have been slow in coming up lately.  I am still reading The Apostle, Edgar Sawtelle and just started Welcome to the Great Mysterious.  There is another book that I started a while ago but have been sort of avoiding, not sure if will continue or not with it yet so no need to mention right now.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Down the Nile--#27 finished

An interesting travel kind of book.  The author Rosemary Mahoney, travels to Egypt with the desire and kind of a plan to row the Nile river.  While a woman doing this at a river in the US or Europe would really be not that big of a deal, in Egypt it is very different.  The first part of the book deals with her troubles in just finding a boat that she can use to row.  She ends up not able to purchase a boat but befriends a sort of captain of a boat that also has a smaller row boat that he allows her to use with him following her.  Later up the river she is able to purchase a row boat under the guise it is for her husband and continues on the journey.

Along with what she is going through she also quotes earlier writers that traveled the Nile in the past, Gustave Flaubert and Florence Nightingale are the two main ones but there were several others.  These insights from the past really added to the enjoyment of this book.  Overall I liked the book, very interesting.

I will be posting it on PBS, I think there are still around 12 WL for it.  I am still reading The Secret Speech, The Apostle and Edgar Sawtelle.  Not sure if I will add another to the mix tonight or not yet.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Boy2Girl--#26 finished

A goofy kind of teen book where a 13 year old punk American boy has to move to England to live with his aunt & her family after his mom dies.  Lots of teenage/preteen angst and of course the whole what are girls about.  Well he is kind of forced to dress as a girl as a kind of joke/retribution for the first week of school and it runs from there.  Not a bad read but I am really not the target audience for this book.  Oh well, it was quick and something different.  I have been a little stuck with the books I have been reading so this was a decent change of pace.

Still reading The Secret Speech and Down the Nile and also started Edgar Sawtell.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

The Games Presidents Play--#25 finished

This book has a lot of information about each President of the US as far as what they did to exercise or what sports they enjoyed.  It started with George Washington and went all the way through George W Bush.  Lots of good info and stuff that I didn't know, not that I am any kind of Presidential historian or anything close to that.  I knew some of Teddy Roosevelt but had no idea that he was as big an outdoorsman and sportsman as he was.  The rock/mountain climbing, the crazy hikes, hunting trips, swimming--how he did all of this to the extreme is really impressive.  A President today could not even attempt to do these things just for the fact of how TR put his safety in jeopardy many times.  A very interesting read and I am glad that I have read it.

I have posted it on PBS, it is the only copy on system now but no WL so no idea how long it will be around.  I am still reading The Secret Speech and Up the Nile and started a more kids like book Boy2Girl.  Not sure if I will start a 4th tonight or not.  Well actually there is a 4th out there but not sure I will continue it, might give it another day or so to see how I feel.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Pistol: The Life of Pete Maravich--#24 finished

Pete Maravich was before my time. I think I had a couple Topps basketball cards of his and remember being amazed at his statistics but had no real concept of them as a kid beyond amazement. I had heard about his amazing talent and some of the stories of his life in my adult life but really had no idea about him until I read this book. Lots of very good and very insightful info in here. I really liked the book. I didn't know how really tragic his life was and how shocking the autopsy that revealed his heart condition that regularly kills people before they are 20. How he was able to play college and then NBA basketball is really amazing. I realize I am typing amazing too many times but it is the best word I can come up with right now.

I have posted it on PBS and there was 1 WL for it so I am waiting for it to get accepted. I am still reading Games of the Presidents, The Secret Speech and Up the Nile or something like that. Not sure if I will start another one right now, will probably wait a couple days.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Pinheads and Patriots--#23 finished

This is the latest Bill O'Reilly book and it was just okay. I used to watch more Fox News Channel than now but I will still watch O'Reilly The Factor once or so a week, if nothing else is on. Hannity is tough to watch, just too much cheer leader for Republicans and how evil Dems are. Greta just isn't really interesting so that leaves O'Reilly. The Factor is basically okay and he has some decent guests. This is the 2nd O'Reilly book that I have read and neither one was very exciting to me. Just kind of the same stuff that is thrown out on his show. No real in-depth stuff, just stuff. Oh well, it didn't take long to read, I guess that is something.

I have already posted it on PBS and hope it gets accepted quick so I can mail it off with a couple others ready to go. The reading The Games Presidents Play and The Secret Speech. I will be looking for a 3rd book later tonight as well.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

The Lumiere Affair--#22 finished

I really enjoyed this book. I am surprised that it is the only book written by the author Sara Voorhees, I hope she is working on another book. A very interesting story both of Natalie's life and of being a reporter at Cannes Movie Festival. Interesting characters that are developed enough that good and bad are seen in them all, they have a level of being complex that is often missed especially in 1st novels. I am not a big fan of the ending, which I kind of had a feeling it was coming but from thinking it over there were not a lot of choices left for the ending either.

I have already posted it on PBS, there was 1 WL so will have to see if it moves or not. I am still reading The Sports of the Presidents or whatever that exact title is. Also reading Pinheads and Patriots and The Secret Speech. Probably won't start another one tonight but I have noticed when sitting in my book room it is hard to not start more books, just so many sitting right there wanting to be opened up.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

The Moses Expedition--#21 finished

The 2nd in a series about a priest Father Fowler that is also a secret agent. Not a bad story but lots of this one are just not too believable. It is an action adventure type story with some decent characters. Not sure if there will be a 3rd book in the series or not, if there is I will probably read it. The first two books have been okay. This book is about an attempt to find the Ark and well they find it but Father Fowler destroys it for fear of what the Ark would become in today's world. Interesting but left lots of loose ends so that is why I am thinking a 3rd book is coming.

I will be posting it on PBS, it has been jumping around with 4 WL when I started reading it a few weeks ago, to then having 3 or 4 copies on the system. Now there is only 1 copy ahead of this one so I hope it will move at some point. Still reading Games President's Play, The Lumiere Affair, Pinheads and Patriots and just started The Secret Speech, these 4 should keep me busy for a while.

Saturday, March 24, 2012

The Imaginary Girlfriend--#20 finished

This is John Irving's memoir. A good quick read. Being a wrestler back in high school, it is kind of fun to read about how much wrestling has played a part in his life. I knew that it did from reading some of his books but didn't know to that extent. It is kind of funny how many important or at least well known people he has bumped into in his life, a lot before he or they were famous. Kind of funny in a way. This is not a long detailed book. Just short chapters about some of the important stuff that went on in his life, like I said earlier a good quick read.

I have posted it on PBS and I think there are 2 copies ahead of it so probably won't be moving any time too soon.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

The Litigators--#19 finished

March started slow as far as getting books read but these last few days I have been really able to knock them out. This is the newest Grisham book and it is good like Grisham books generally are. The story was good and it ended all feel good. It was a little slow starting and some parts kind of have to be overlooked but all in all a nice quick read about lawyers.

I have posted it on PBS & hope to mail off soon. Right now only reading The Imaginary Girlfriend and The Moses Expedition. Not sure if I will start a 3rd tonight or not.

Monday, March 19, 2012

The Red Queen--#18 finished

I really enjoyed this book, this is the 2nd book in a series, the first was The White Queen. This is a historical fiction that is an accurate as the author could make/guess about it. It is during the Lancaster and Tudor Kings times of England. Really good info and stuff in the book. Also a very good read. This one seemed to flow easier than how I remember The White Queen went. There is a 3rd book in the series and it is on my WL but might be a while before it comes. Oh well I already have lots to read so no real hurry.

I will be posting this on PBS, there are around 280 WL for it so it should move soon.

Devil's Dream--#17 finished

I finished this book Saturday night but a storm knocked out our internet, phone & sat. TV. I just got fixed this afternoon. This is Madison Smartt Bell's book about Nathan Bedford Forrest. It was unusual layout, in that it jumped all around his life from during the Civil War and his life before the war. He is a truly interesting character and general from the Civil War. The book did not touch on his life after the war though and I am a little disappointed in that. I know he played a part in the founding of the KKK but per a timeline of events at the end of the book he broke away from that by the end of his life. I guess I was hoping more for a history book about Forrest and instead got more of a fictional account of what & why he was the person he was. Still interesting but not quite what I wanted.

I will be posting it on PBS, there is only 1 WL for it so hopefully it goes. Reading The Red Queen, The Litigator and just started The Moses Expedition. Not sure if I will get a 4th book though. Getting close to finishing Red Queen so might just pickup a 3rd book then.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Bob Hope: My Life in Jokes--#16 finished

An okay read. Basically some short paragraphs about times of his life and a series of jokes he had used/written about topics from that time. Nothing really special or memorable but still a quick easy read. I really like Bob Hope and I guess a lot of his jokes just don't transfer to paper, his facial expressions and how he plays off the audience or others around him really added to his comedy.

I have posted it on PBS and there are like 10 copies or so ahead of it so don't expect it to move for a while if ever.

Friday, March 9, 2012

The Blood of Tyrants--#15 finished

It took a while but I was able to finish a book in March finally. This is an okay book with a definite political slant to the right. It was about a kind of revolt against socialists with current political players very thinly disguised. Non-political people take a kind of vigil-anti justice and start killing off members of the House that are socialist/communist that also lined their pockets with money while serving the country. Not a great book, almost like some of the Fox News commentators served this up. Oh well, the story moved quickly and was semi-interesting. I think there is a 2nd book in series, I have it on my WL and if I get it I will probably continue the series.

I have posted it on PBS and it is the only copy on the system so I hope it moves at some point. My bookshelf has been slow lately but that is fine with me. I am sitting on 22 credits so have plenty at this point. Still reading Devil's Dream, The Litigators and Bob Hope's My Life in Jokes. Will probably start a 4th at some point this weekend.

Monday, February 27, 2012

American Buffalo--#14 finished

A good read about the writer's almost obsession with the buffalo. He talks about his experiences starting with finding a buffalo skull while in Montana on a hike/camping trip to then studying the skull to then getting picked by lottery to hunt buffalo in Alaska. Then finally all the details of the hunt. In between all of this is history of the buffalo as best is known. Good stuff, good read.

I will be posting it on PBS at some point, probably not this week though. I am still reading The Blood of Tyrants and slowly reading Devil's Dream. I also had just started the new Grisham book, The Litigators. Not sure if I will start a 4th or not, probably not but who knows either when I sit in my book room sometimes a book just jumps out at me.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Northline--#13 finished

Wow, I really liked this book. The characters in the book are going through some raw emotional times and really don't know how to handle it. I really sensed what they were going through & wanted to reach into the book & help them. The end seems to indicate the main character is coming through and will help the boyfriend she has. It was a short quick read but a lot is packed into the pages. Good stuff.

I have posted it on PBS, there were 2 WL for it and so it should move soon. Reading the other books but won't go into right now.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Red Square--#12 finished

This is the 3rd Arkady Renko book by Martin Cruz Smith. It has been 20 to 30 years since I read the first one Gorky Park, but still remember it as very good. At least that was my opinion then at a very different age. I read the 2nd book Polar Star a year or two ago and really enjoyed it. Red Square is good but not quite as good as Polar Star--my memories of Gorky Park are just not good enough to try to compare. The time is 1991 in USSR which has just moved to more democratic ways. He travels to Berlin & Munich Germany and walks across where Checkpoint Charlie(I think that was what it was called) was located and saw where the wall had come down. It is an interesting time period and moves the series along but not a great read. I will continue the series though.

I am keeping the books in this series at this point and since there are already lots of copies on PBS really no need in posting it anyway. Reading American Buffalo and Devil's Dream and a 3rd book that I can't remember the name at this point. Not sure if I will start a 4th book tonight or not.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

A Diet of Treacle--#11 finished

This is a 1950s book that has been reprinted. The author is Lawrence Block, famous enough that I have heard of him but this is the first book that I have read by him. It was a good quick read, kind of funny in that it is a '50s book so a lot of the mindset, etc is quite a bit different. Topics in the book were the beat generation, drugs--mostly marijuana and heroin but also some other like cough syrup and stuff. The topics like beat generation and drugs were introduced in ways that the author basically didn't think the reader would have much knowledge of these and in the '50s that was probably pretty true.

Well I have posted it on PBS, there was 1 WL for it so if all goes well it should be mailed off this week. Politics Noir was rejected because it was an ex-library book so it is not going into the mail yet. I just started American Buffalo in Search of a Lost Icon. Probably won't start another tonight since it is getting late but will probably add a 4th in next couple of days.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Politics Noir--#10 finished

This is another short story book but this book was a little longer than the last one, 260 pages vs 93. This is the 3rd Noir book that I have read and all 3 were okay in parts but overall just okay. I know there are bunches out there of these Noir books but I doubt I will order any, but might pick them up if I see them for sale cheap. I think I liked the ones that revolved around cities, New Orleans and Detroit, more than I liked this one that revolved around politics. Some interesting stuff but again nothing really exciting. I think I might be done on short story books for a while.

I have posted it on PBS and there is 1 WL for it but I think I have posted to this person in the past and he either doesn't want library books or let the previous book time out. Anyway, it is posted but not sure it will be moving or not. I just started A Diet of Treacle and old Lawrence Block book and still working on other 2. I am not adding a 4th right now but who knows over the weekend.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Whose World Is This?--#9 finished

This is a book of short stories, kind of interesting stuff. I am getting to like short stories a little more but in general they seem to leave me unsatisfied. These stories have interesting perspectives and some happenings but overall just too much left unsaid for my taste. Oh well, the short stories seem to work right now because I just don't have a lot of time to invest in reading so reading a few pages at a time on a short story is easier.

I have posted it on PBS & it is the only copy on system. I hope it will move a some point but short story books seem to take a while. I am still reading Red Square, Politics Noir and Devil's Dream. I will probably start a 4th sometime tonight as well. Politics Noir is also getting close to be finished too.

Friday, February 3, 2012

The Sheltering Sky--#8 finished

This is a book that I had for a couple years I think and finally got around to reading. It was written in the 1950s I think and it was about an American couple and a male friend of theirs that travel to Northern Africa soon after WWII. It is a very good book, with the problems the couple are going through, some issues with their friend, people they meet and then eventually the husband dies. The wife kind of goes nuts and then goes native. I had read a review so I knew the husband dies but the ending really threw me, I wasn't expecting that but it still made sense. I am guessing this ending made this a contraversial book when it came out, but I know the author had problems getting it published too--probably because of the ending.

This is one of those books that I was thinking about keeping but instead I think I will post it on PBS & mail it off to someone else to enjoy. There are no WL for it and no copies on the system either. I expect it won't be long though before this book is requested & I am mailing it off.

Monday, January 30, 2012

The Gray Man--#7 finished

I didn't think I would get 7 books read this month, it has been a busy month with other things going on. This book though is a very good page turner so that is kind of why I was able to zip through it. Good action adventure, fast paced action throughout with some different kinds of stuff going on. Not sure if it will become a series or not but it was enjoyable and the main character seems to be one that could be built into a series.

I have posted it on PBS but there are already 17 copies ahead of it so it will not be moving too soon. Still reading Red Square but it got pushed back with reading this & The Sheltering Sky. I have also started a thin short stories book, can't think of name right now.

Monday, January 23, 2012

I Am Third--#6 finished

This is the Gale Sayers autobiography that he wrote in 1970 after he came back from his serious knee injury and also after Brian Piccolo's death from cancer. It is an interesting read, even today with it being dated and such. It is interesting to read about a young black man that went to college & played pro ball in the '60s. Just his interactions with people and his own thoughts. His youth and also probably the times, really give this book an innocent and completely truthful feel. While the youthful side might lead it to be not a ton of introspection, the reader can really tell at times that this is an intelligent person even while doing stupid or silly things. Almost as impressive as his playing days was the fact that he was the first black stockbroker for Paine Webber. This was an early indication of the future success he would have after football. I didn't realize that the 1969 season was really his last good season. He only played 2 games in each of the next 2 years, which is really sad given the great talent he was.

I have posted it on PBS, it is the only copy of the book on the system so it should move at some point. I do have a lot of only copy on the system books and they aren't moving much at all, but I know patience is the rule at PBS. Still reading Red Square and just started The Sheltering Sky yesterday, will look to add a 3rd book tonight.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Here They Come--#5 finished

A very quick read about a middle school age girl that has a very screwed up family. I think it was from '70s or '80s, no cell phones, etc. Mom & dad are split up and mom is a drunk & dad just a loser. Really tough read because how screwed up life is for these people. Not one of my favorites at all, just too screwed up and really no sign that anything will make it better.

I have posted it on PBS, there was 1 WL for it so hopefully it will be mailed out next week.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Detroit Noir--#4 finished

This is a short story book with all of the short stories being about Detroit. I had earlier read New Orleans Noir which had some good stories but I also remember some duds. I think this was a better book. Maybe it is just the cities, New Orleans Noir had quite a few of the stories revolving around Hurricane Katrina, while Detroit Noir seemed to just have more about the decaying inner city. Good stuff overall.

I will be posting it on PBS, I think there are 6 WL for it so it will move. I might wait to post it later this weekend though. Still reading Red Square, I am Third and just started & already halfway through Here They Come.

Monday, January 16, 2012

The Short Bus--#3 finished

A man basically is reflecting back on his treatment in elementary & middle & high schools because he was not a "normal" learner. He is dyslexic and not sure what else but he grew to hate most of his teachers and the idea of the short bus. He has graduated from Brown Univ, Ivy League and has become a speaker around the country to learning disabled kids LD. He came up with the idea of driving a short bus around the country to talk to some kids or people about their experiences. I just had the feeling this was kind of just all done for the book. The author is struggling with himself as far as leading a "normal" life or leading an eccentric life and not really sure at the end where he will end up. I don't know the whole book seemed forced to just get a book done. The whole trip to the hippie commune The Burning Man just didn't fit either. This book had some good parts but overall not really for me.

I will be posting it on PBS soon, I think there were around 10 WL for it.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Last Night in Twisted River--#2 finished

The latest book by John Irving who wrote The World According to Garp. This is another life long book, really good story overall. I didn't like some of the political shots he took during the book, but I guess he really wanted his readers to know his feelings on politics. Lots of good stories within the story, about a father & son that have to run from the small logging town where they are at and have to keep moving throughout the story. Some goofy parts that are probably a little more than far fetched but the storyline and characters keep moving. Overall I really enjoyed it.

There are 40 WL for it so I will be mailing it off at some point, probably next week with a couple others. I have 5 already mailed off for PBS so no real hurry to put more in the pipeline right now either. Still reading The Short Bus book, also reading Red Square an Arkaday Renko story by Martin Cruz Smith and also reading Detroit Noir--I read first story few days ago and haven't picked back up yet.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Lemay-The Life and Wars of General Curtis LeMay--#1 finished

First book of the new year finished & it was a good one. I was really impressed by the research done on General LeMay and also by the fact that he is such an important general that I hadn't heard of him before reading this book. I have read some WWII books and seen several movies and I don't recall ever hearing LeMay's name before. I probably have, I read a book or two about MacArthur and figure LeMay had to be mentioned, although MacArthur was hardly mentioned in this book. It was a fascinating time especially to be one of the leaders of the newly being developed on the fly(pun intended) Air Force. Also then his career after WWII starting with developing the Rand Corp and making SAC what it was & is today. Finally his struggles to adjust to the 1960s in his Joint Chiefs position and then his after the military struggles. I actually heard his named mentioned a couple weeks ago while reading this book as the VP to the last 3rd party candidate for president that actually won some electoral votes--Wallace in 1968. Again I had no idea and at one time I knew all candidates & vps for president since the 1900s. I guess the name LeMay didn't stick with me & I never did any further research into him.

I will be posting it on PBS at some point, there are 9 WL for it. I still have Methland and a couple others that I have pulled that I decided to not read but mail off instead. Right now though I just don't feel like getting to the Post Office to get it done so will probably wait till next week.

Still reading Last Night in Twisted River, somewhere around halfway done. Also reading Journey on the Short Bus or something like that, a autobio by a guy who was LD diagnosed that went on to graduate from Brown Univ with honors. So far an interesting read. I will be looking to add another book tonight.