What are you reading?


#41

I’m taking a break from mystery/suspense in favor of early American history, halfway through with America’s First Ladies, published by the White House Historic Association.

It’s amazing the hardships these women endured that would break just about anyone. For instance, there is an organization called Compassionate Friends that offers support for those bereaved of a child.

Yet in the 18th Century & 19th Centuries, death of sometimes multiple children in one families was nothing unexpected. Illnesses that ended the lives of a few, like tb (most likely the 8th FLOTUS, Hannah Van Buren), & pneumonia (#21 Ellen Arthur) are not as frequent in the U S (tb), with pneumonia more treatable.

These women didn’t strictly manage households & entertain at the White House, but had various talents & experience from outside jobs pre marriage, from working in a bank to teaching.

Another interesting one for those interested in criminal justice in the colonies is by Deborah Navas, “Murdered by his Wife”. It’s about Bathsheba Spooner, the first woman to be hung in Worcester, MA.

It’s an interesting account of how trials were conducted & how her father’s being a Loyalist may have influenced the verdict. Also provided a look at why an adulteress pregnant with another’s baby would have had option zero in the colonies as divorce was forbidden & such a woman publicly flogged.


#43

Just finished “In Order to Live”, Yeonmi Park’s account of her childhood in North Korea, her escape, with her mother, to South Korea. A lot of it is very sad, the trafficking in young girls who escape by way of China is pretty horrific.

One thing I found interesting - prior to the great famine in the early '90s, most of the people who escaped to South Korea and were admitted were male, with education and skills, so the processing was fairly easy. Since then, there has been an increase in North Koreans who are women and children, those with lower education and few or no job skills, costing South Korea more time and money to integrate them, so SK is making it much harder for this newer group of refugees.


#44

Decided that rather than dive into Malazan again I’d go with Monster Hunter International by Larry Correia. Only a few hours into the listen but its basically about a private organization that hunts all the supernatural monsters out there.

I’ve been curious to read this book for a while. Correia was one of the two authors that organized the Sad Puppies movement a few years ago which caused a ton of controversy in the Hugo awards (basically the literary version of the Oscars but for sci / fi fantasy books). Correia and others felt that the Hugo’s had been hijacked by SJW’s so he and others nominated books they felt were more deserving. Correia has since been something of a pariah in leftist circles. So far his book isn’t at all political unless you consider that the main character is a gun fanatic but many characters in many books are such so thats just storytelling to me.

If you haven’t heard of the whole Sad Puppies controversy its rather amusing to read stories about it and then the subsequent Rabid Puppies movement. Some extremist felt that Sad Puppies was too tame as they were still nominating mainstream books like those written by Brandon Sanderson so Rabid Puppies started nominating ridiculous books and then were able to hijack the voting process (anybody can vote by paying a small fee) to get some ridiculous books nominated - one book they got nominated for a Hugo was literally called Space Raptor Butt Invasion and you can pretty much guess right what its about.


#45

I read that book. It was good. I thought it was about something else.


#46

Thanks to my Kindle, I’m reading a bunch of books. I’m going between “Fear” by Bob Woodward, “The World As It Is” by Ben Rhodes and a few others. The Rhodes book is wonderful, though.


#47

I’m juggling two mysteries. Lisa Gardner’s “Look for Me”, and Alafair Burke’s, attorney daughter of James Lee Burke, “The Wife”. Both are pretty engaging reads.


#48

Our book club wanted a Christmas read, so after batting a few around, the majority vote was for “Skipping Christmas” by John Grisham. (It was made into a film called “Christmas With the Kranks.”) On the plus side, it’s a very fast read, you can get through it in under two hours.


#49

Actually reading a book right now on kindle called Wearing the Cape by Marion Barber. About a world where superheroes exist. So far its failing to really grab me. I used to physically read at least 100 books or more a year. Now I can count on one hand how many I do. I’m mostly audio book now.

Will finish up listening to Monster Hunter International by Larry Correia tonight at work. Basically a prose form of the TV show Supernatural in many ways. There are evil monsters in the world and people who hunt them. Its okay but probably won’t continue with the series right away.

I’ve been on the waiting list for the audio version Origin by Dan Brown for over a year at my library and it finally came to me. So I’ll start it tonight after finishing MHI. Have to finish in under two weeks.


#50

I finished “Look for Me”, by New Hampshire’s Lisa Gardner. There was some inaccuracy about pet adoptions in neighboring Massachusetts, & the ending scenes involved too many characters & too many possibilities as to who was the perpetrator, but overall it rated four stars out of five.

Little more than halfway through the book, there was some information about who may have fingerprints “in the system”—obviously those who’ve been arrested, but also those of us needing them for a security clearance.

Most of the story’s characters were teens & young adults, with a smaller number of middle aged & older adults. I’ll be 51 soon, & remember seeing my birth certificate with fingerprints & foot prints.

Does anyone know when this practice stopped? Or may it have varied by state?


#51

When you say fingerprints in the system you basically have to consider which system they are in. The system as they refer to it isn’t an all in one. There are many databases out there with fingerprints in them and being in one doesn’t mean your in another. Basically think about it like your bank account. The system is the banking industry but every bank has its own database.

For instance, the police dept in my town has its own database consisting of anyone who has ever been printed at the county jail, for a CWP, or came to the PD to be printed so they could send their print cards off for a background check. If you don’t fall in one of those categories you’ll get missed on a basic print check. You might be in another PD’s system but this PD will never know that. If your in the FBI system you might get picked up if they bother to send the prints there.

Sending stuff to the FBI is costly and time consuming so they only do it on major cases. Most of the time the local system works because most criminals are already there but I’m sure some do slip through because they are newbies to the area or are on their first crime.


#52

It looks like grandma!


#53

Finished Origin by Dan Brown. Enjoyable enough though the big reveal was underwhelming.

Got an english copy of Neuromancer by William Gibson. I don’t like the narrator and I find my brain too often drifting off to other things and realizing I haven’t been paying attention. 2/3’s of the way through I have no idea whats going on. Not going back though as I’ve listened to enough audio books to know it would be futile as I’ll just drift away again.


#54

Misbehaving by Richard H. Thaler.

It’s similar to other behavioral economics books, but I like behavioral economics books, so I’m enjoying myself.


#55

I enjoy reading about behavioral economics. Have to pick that one up.


#56

One of my favorites! The experiments are the typical experiments, but I like how he sprinkles in his fights with old school economists and finance guys.


#57

Just finished Factfulness by the late Hans Rosling et al. A good reminder that the world is getting better and how to train yourself against “bad news” bias. A big takeaway for me was to consider that the difference between a dollar a day income and a four dollar a day income is massive and life transforming.

Rosling is the star of one of my favorite data visualizations of all time:


#58

Well, there goes my contribution. Your an anti-pseudo-intellectite


#59

Topological Methods in Group Theory., 1st ed. 2008 Edition., Geoghegan.

It’s a real page turner… … :confused:


#60

Ha the fact you made this post tells me your not. :grinning:

I


#61

You in school?