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-   Book Reviews (http://www.socnet.com/forumdisplay.php?f=226)
-   -   What are you reading? (http://www.socnet.com/showthread.php?t=40592)

Stingray66 9 February 2013 14:21

The Last Stand of the Tin Can Sailors. Just started it, good so far.

Joe723 9 February 2013 23:01

Quote:

Originally Posted by Stingray66 (Post 1058247905)
The Last Stand of the Tin Can Sailors. Just started it, good so far.

It's an amazing story.

jtk317 11 February 2013 20:06

Dune.

I tend to read the first 4 books once every other year or so. Might do the whole series this time around.

Robot Wrangler 12 February 2013 14:21

How Dark the World Becomes by Frank Chadwick
March Upcountry by John Ringo

I read a ton of Sci-Fi and when I was deployed I damn near had a library in my hooch.

KidA 12 February 2013 14:38

Quote:

Originally Posted by CAP MARINE (Post 1058240794)
A book about the 761st tank battalion-book is signed by K.A.Jabbar(Lakers)

I haven't read any of his books but he recently wrote a review of some show called "Girls" and of course women everywhere bashed him for writing it and even questioned why a grown man would watch the show (apparently it's on HBO).

His reply was brilliant:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/kareem-abduljabbar/kareem-abdul-jabbar-girls-review_b_2615824.html?utm_hp_ref=entertainment&ir= Entertainment

Quote:

There was much reaction. Some questioned why a man my age would watch a show about girls in their twenties, as if they'd just discovered me hanging around a school playground with a shopping bag full of candy in one hand a fluffy puppy in the other. Of course, these critics are right. When I read Moby Dick I first had to convince the bookseller that I was a former whaler named Queequeg. When I read the poetry of Sylvia Plath, I had to pretend I was a depressed white woman with daddy issues. Don't worry, I used a fake ID.
and

Quote:

What do people expect when an ex-jock discusses pop culture? "Hmmm. Magic light box have good shows. Me like some. Others make me puke Gatorade. Me give it three jock straps."

Maybe this will help: I have a degree from UCLA. I'm an amateur historian who has written books about World War II, the Harlem Renaissance, and African-American inventors. I read a lot of fiction as well as non-fiction. I watch TV and movies. I have acted in both. I have been a political activist and an advocate for children's education. How should an aging, black jock like myself know anything about pop culture? Man, I am a living part of pop culture and have been for nearly 50 years. Beyond that, I think pop culture expresses our needs, fears, hopes and whole zeitgeist better than some of the more esoteric and obscure forms of art.

I'm going to have to put some of his books on my list.

hunteran 12 February 2013 17:20

Just finished "Matterhorn" (really liked it) and now I'm starting "One Hundred Days: The Memoirs of the Falklands Battle Group Commander" by Admiral Sandy Woodward.

AustinPT 15 February 2013 07:01

Listening to "Fearless", the Adam Brown story, on Audible. About 1/2 way through. Absolutely phenomenal so far. Not at all what I expected. What an amazing life, lived by an amazing warrior. Highly recommend.

CAP MARINE 5 March 2013 21:51

A HIGHER CALL

jtk317 5 March 2013 22:08

Started "Black Company" series. So far good but hectic writing style.

GirlwithaGlock 6 March 2013 11:36

I started reading Mo Yan's Life and Death Are Wearing Me Out. I figured that I should check him out since he got the Nobel Prize in Literature last year and what not.

What an unpleasantly weird book so far!

Dino0311 6 March 2013 12:48

Juggling three right now. A Dance With Dragons, Spies Against Armageddon, and The Last Playboy, about Porfirio Rubirosa.

smp52 6 March 2013 16:11

Quote:

Originally Posted by OutsideTheB (Post 1058224508)
Hmm, that sounds like a good one, smp. You liking it?

This is VERY good. The author is the Nobel Prize winning economist/psychologist who defined most of the key aspects for behavioral economics. He used lots of experiments and empirical statistical approaches, rather than the fuzzier clinical side.

Kahneman talks about not only his experiments, but also his detractors approaches and giving credit where it is due. The author brings his diverse experiences, including time spent in the early years of the Israeli military. Basic scripts he developed on assessing candidates are still used almost 50 years later as it cut through interviewer bias.

It isn't a quick read, but very engaging with exercises and talks strongly to how the brain percieves information and limitations of humans (for example short term versus long term forcasting). Some of this is common sense, other topics highlight our intuitive or analytical limitations.

JMHO, however if one considers books on congnitive bias, conflict, and how to think/approach problems...I would consider the following books as part of complementary series:

Behavioral Economics:
- Thinking Fast and Slow
- Talebs books (Black Swan and Antifragility)

Leadership:
- The Mission, Men, and Me (Getting Treed by a Chihuahua is an example of the mind playing tricks, which Thinking Fast and Slow addresses in a broader context)
- Leadership and Training for the Fight

Strategy:
- Books on Boyd and the OODA loop (Boyd's presentations, his biography by Coram, and PhD dissertation by Osinga)

I believe a theme exists through these books on continual assessment, bias, using a combination of trained discipline and intuition to weave through uncertainty. I may be completely off here; lots of books on these topics. I recieved the recommendation to read this from class on complexity sciences. The more "pop/sci" version of this is Galdwell's Blink, but Blink misses major underlying concepts as noted in Thinking Fast/Slow.

I hope that helps.

GPC 20 March 2013 13:32

Fall of Giants by Ken Follett.

CV 20 March 2013 20:29

I finished writing a novella (a smaller novel) recently. If you feel inclined, please pick it up for your Kindle.

--> Link

stay_tru 22 March 2013 18:40

I just started reading the Sword of Shannara, the 2nd book in the series by Terry Brooks...if you like Lord of the Rings then this series would be worth checking out

jtk317 22 March 2013 19:15

If you read the whole series you won't be displeased. Some interesting abilities start popping up among the Scions of Shannara farther into the series.

Bearcat06 29 March 2013 04:06

Re-reading Red Phoenix by Larry Bond.

Good read especially with what's going on over there now.

Best of all.... $0.99 cents on Amazon for the Kindle.

AustinPT 29 March 2013 05:35

Reading "The Only Thing Worth Dying For" at work, and Brad Taylor's "all necessary force" at home

The Fat Guy 29 March 2013 07:04

I finally finished "Atlas Shrugged" by Ann Rand. Great and timeless story. BUT for the love of God, how you can write for 5 pages about two people looking at each other is beyond me.

The Fat Guy 29 March 2013 07:06

Quote:

Originally Posted by AustinPT (Post 1058264143)
Reading "The Only Thing Worth Dying For" at work, and Brad Taylor's "all necessary force" at home

I read "The Only thing worth dying for". It was a good book until I learned how a friend was actually killed. Kind of a fucked up way to learn about such things. Still, a good read.

Fofo 29 March 2013 15:00

Shadows of a Forgotten Past: To the Edge with the Rhodesian SAS and Selous Scouts... by Paul French.

Have been interested in the various wars that raged throughout Africa back in the day, so I thought this would be a good one to get. A very interesting read I'm about halfway through, and find it hard to put it down. Also contains a couple dozen photos, from the 70's to present, of friendly and enemy guerrilla forces.

GirlwithaGlock 29 March 2013 16:34

Finishing up Delaney's Ireland. What a treat!

Has anyone read his other novels? Recommendations?

AustinPT 29 March 2013 19:41

Quote:

Originally Posted by The Fat Guy (Post 1058264162)
I read "The Only thing worth dying for". It was a good book until I learned how a friend was actually killed. Kind of a fucked up way to learn about such things. Still, a good read.

Yes, sir, I agree. It was tragic. And the description of the aftermath really hit hard. Still, it was a story that needed to be told. I'm sorry for your loss.

Mike504 1 April 2013 16:35

Just finished reading Hitler's Panzersby Dennis Showalter. A pretty good book that goes into the nuts and bolts of how the Panzerwaffe evolved operationally and tactically between 1939 and 1945. It discusses the equipment and some personalities that aren't common knowledge in the US like Hermann Balck and Erhard Raus. The book also dispels some myths about the battle of Kursk. It wasn't the crushing defeat that some have made it out to be for the Germans. The book is heavy on details about the Russian Front and gives an overview of everywhere else.

Recommended, if you are into WW2 history.

jtk317 1 April 2013 17:32

Started "The Books of Mortals" series by Ted Dekker and Tosca Lee.

First book is pretty good. Reminds of the movie Equilibrium minus the guns to an extent.

Copyrighted 8 April 2013 03:52

Nothing to Envy by Barbara Demick. She's a reporter from the LA times that interviews various North Koreans that have escaped to the south. She's also been to North Korea as well. I'm over a quarter of the way through it, but it's been packed with detail about everything from the NK social structure, to vivid accounts of the escapees lives and culture, and how they gradually developed an awareness that NK is shit and they needed to leave.

hunteran 13 April 2013 04:47

Almost done with "Boyd: The Fighter Pilot Who Changed the Art of War" by Robert Coram. I liked it, thought it was an interesting read and if half of what it claims about our acquisitions process is true...holy hell...

GPC 13 April 2013 09:13

Starting Target Deck by Jack Murphy.

glenne 13 April 2013 15:46

The Way of the Knife: The CIA, a Secret Army, and a War at the Ends of the Earth - Mark Mazzetti (Author)
A Pulitzer Prize–winning reporter’s riveting account of the transformation of the CIA and America’s special operations forces into man-hunting and killing machines in the world’s dark spaces: the new American way of war.

Pretty interesting so far. Pissing contest between Rumsfeld & Tenet over
Both intelligence gathering and para-military operations.
JSOC, etc.

jtk317 13 April 2013 17:11

The Books of Mortals got kind of religiousy but still not too bad.

Currently reading more Black Company books (on "She is the Darkness" right now). Awaiting a copy of "The Twilight War" which was recommended earlier in the thread.

Linda1961 13 April 2013 18:56

Just started Robert Jordan's Wheel of Time series over from the start.....wanted to read through and remember all the things I've forgotten over the years before I read the final book "A Memory of Light".

osubuckeye762 14 April 2013 04:56

Been bouncing back and forth between The Daring Dozen and Battle Ready: A memoir of a Seal Warrior Medic.

The Fat Guy 14 April 2013 08:44

Quote:

Originally Posted by AustinPT (Post 1058264411)
Yes, sir, I agree. It was tragic. And the description of the aftermath really hit hard. Still, it was a story that needed to be told. I'm sorry for your loss.

Most importantly, I believe the book did honor to their sacrifice. Thanks.

Believeraz 16 April 2013 19:47

I just finished Enemy of Mine by Brad Taylor. I have enjoyed all of his books and this was no exception.

Next up: The Anatomy of Motive by John Douglas with Mark Olshaker. Douglas ran the FBI's behavioral analysis unit in its early days. I am looking looking forward to it, even if it is work related.

Armitage12 16 April 2013 19:58

Reading John Gaddis's biography of George Kennan. Just got through the part where he's in Berlin at the outbreak of World War II and has to oversee the detainment of the diplomats, military attaches and family. Reads faster then Gaddis' earlier works.

Armitage12 16 April 2013 20:00

More on Boyd
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by hunteran (Post 1058269029)
Almost done with "Boyd: The Fighter Pilot Who Changed the Art of War" by Robert Coram. I liked it, thought it was an interesting read and if half of what it claims about our acquisitions process is true...holy hell...

You might enjoy Frans Osinga's Science, Strategy, and War: The Strategic Theory of John Boyd_ next. Best account we have of his ideas, separate from the man.

GirlwithaGlock 23 April 2013 08:20

Picked up Margaret Thatcher's autobiography; just a few pages into it but it has been a great read from the very beginning. The more I learn about Madame Thatcher, the more I believe that modern women (especially in politics) should be taking notes from her.

Sigi 23 April 2013 08:32

Quote:

Originally Posted by AustinPT (Post 1058250293)
Listening to "Fearless", the Adam Brown story, on Audible. About 1/2 way through. Absolutely phenomenal so far. Not at all what I expected. What an amazing life, lived by an amazing warrior. Highly recommend.

Absolutely phenomenal book. Amazing story! I read it twice, then went to Cancun and read it again.

I am now reading A World at Arms by Gerhard L. Weinberg. If you are interested in a truly global telling of WWII this is the book for you.

Sigi 23 April 2013 08:37

Quote:

Originally Posted by AustinPT (Post 1058264143)
Reading "The Only Thing Worth Dying For" at work,

Same author as "Fearless." A very good book as well. Things didn't begin to go to shit until the command decided to show up and take over decision making once the team starting moving south towards Kandahar.

jtk317 23 April 2013 18:05

Currently reading 2 books:

Got my copy of "Twilight War" and am enjoying it immensely.
I also got "Wayne of Gotham". Entirely fiction of course but supposed to delve into the Wayne family, specifically Thomas Wayne and his father Patrick and what they did to build the Wayne empire.


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