Books

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pharvey
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Re: Books

Post by pharvey » Sun Mar 01, 2015 8:29 pm

^ Cheers Caller - will download a couple and take a look!!

:cheers: :cheers:
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Re: Books

Post by Frank La Rue » Mon Mar 09, 2015 1:00 am

I have just finished Collin Gee's 5th book in the series "Red Gambit", Sacrifice. Colin is now on page 79 with the 6th book in the series so we cannot expect anything new from him until Dec 2015.

In the meantime I am (re) reading Red Storm Rising by Tom Clancy (RIP). So far it's a cracking good read.
I had to buy it 2nd hand on amazon to get it.

Colin Gee himself is emphatic about the impatience of his audience so he recommends another WW3 alternate history - series, the Armageddeon's Song by Andy Farnham, a Brit with background in Army and Police Force, now living in the Philipines with his wife.

Whilst I am in full flow I also recommend the book about Winston Churchhill's planning to take on the Soviets in 1945, whilst US troops were still on the European continent - Wall Mart in reverse (Take Two - Pay for One), two Wars with the Army of One, before the US soliders went back to their wives and shopping at Wall Mart.

Ramble over - I shall now move on to the music section and write about Jethro Tull's album "Minstrel In The Gallery".
Between 2006 and 2013 I ran a thread about another band I cherish, Emerson Lake & Palmer, it ran up 23 pages, so be warned.

Ok, ok - Keith Emerson went to town and bought 2 old - style Canons which he and Greg Lake fired after performing "Pictures At An Exhibition" on the Isle -of - wight Festival in 1970.

Keith (he does not know I exist, even less so that I appreciate his musical abilities, but I allow my self to be on first name with him) had decided that he was gona give the audience an experience like Tchaikovsky's 1812 Overture with real cannons and the whole works.
The critics the day after ranged from "A Supergroup is Born!" to "Waste of Electricity"

For those in doubt, check out "Piano Improvisations" with Emerson Lake & Palmer at the "California Jam" Festival on 1974.

But as George Harrison sang (RIP II): All things must pass.

Ramble over II
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Re: Books

Post by lomuamart » Tue Mar 17, 2015 12:59 pm

Meant to post this a little while ago, but recent books I've read are in no particular order:

Emma Healey - Elizabeth is Missing. A tale of an old lady suffering from demetia. I've give it 4 stars.
Paula Hawkins - The Girl on the Train. Been up there on the best seller lists for ages and definitely worth a read. Almost 5 stars this one.
Jim Thompson - The Killer Inside Me. Excellent, crazy cop. 5 stars.
SJ Watson - Before I go to Sleep. A woman can't remember anything that's happened after she wakes up. Not bad at all and definitely creepy. 4 stars.
Tom Wolfe - Bonfire of the Vanities. Just excellent and definitely 5 stars.
Martin Cruz Smith - Tatiana. I didn't think that Arkady Renko excelled in this. Maybe 2-3 stars. Just didn't do it for me. Red Square and Gorky Park were good books IMHO.
Martin Amis - Money. I'm a great Amis fan but this was disappointing - 3 stars. Give me London Fields or Lionel ASBO any day.

Quite like reading detective stuff and two authors stand out for me. Stuart McBride whose books are set in Aberdeen and Peter James in Brighton. Both writers touch on really difficult subjects/crimes so they're not for the fainthearted.

Enough. I've only got another 1,100 books to read.

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Re: Books

Post by dundrillin » Sat Sep 12, 2015 10:12 pm

"The Martian" an excellent book written by Andy Weir, recommended by Iomuamart a while back is to be made into a movie starring Matt Damon in the title role. Weir himself seems an interesting character,there is a good article in today's Daily Telegraph about him.

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Re: Books

Post by Frank La Rue » Sat Jan 16, 2016 9:35 pm

For those of you interested in History:

I just finished a book in the history genre: The Ottoman Endgame by Sean Mc Meekin (PRofessor of History at Bard College New York),

an excellent insight into the WW I involving the Ottoman Empire, The German Empire, The Brits and Zsar Russia.

There are very interesting facts about the Russian Revolution and how it affected the outcome of the War AND the disolving of The Ottoman Empire.
I get a bit lost in al the names of people and places at times, so studying the maps in the book helops, however one of the most interesting reads I have had in a long time. I read Antony Beevor's books "The Ardennes" and "Berlin" last autumn, but this one thaught me far more.
It covers conficts less talked about I think in the "European" outlook at history.

WW1 and 2 etc is covered everywhere I think in Euoropean schools, but I have realized that at least in my own country my school years provided a Euro centric view of both these wars.

Mc Meekin's book made me realize there was far more th WW I and it gives excellent insight into why the Middle East wrestles with the problems it has today.

I have another book on the shelve which I hope will inform me further a bout the MIddle East of thoday:
A Line In The Sand - how Brittain and France determined the borders of the coutnries in the Middle East in the wake of WW 1.

When I have read it I will report back.
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Re: Books

Post by hhfarang » Sun Jan 17, 2016 10:39 pm

That subject is interesting. I was watching the latest Russel Crowe film, The Water Diviner, a couple of days ago and it is about World War I in Turkey and the aftermath (and how it affected an Australian family, good movie btw). I had always related WWI mostly being fought in France and Germany never really realizing the real territory that war covered. After the movie I went online to read more about the middle east effect of that war as the movie made me curious.

I was born during the five years between WWII and the Korean conflict and graduated high school during the Viet Nam war, so most of my teachers focused on those or the American revolution and the American Civil War. I don't remember being taught much about WWI at all and as a result know very little about it.

Thanks for the tip. I'll look for those books.
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Re: Books

Post by Frank La Rue » Sun Jan 17, 2016 11:47 pm

hhfarang wrote:That subject is interesting. I was watching the latest Russel Crowe film, The Water Diviner, a couple of days ago and it is about World War I in Turkey and the aftermath (and how it affected an Australian family, good movie btw). I had always related WWI mostly being fought in France and Germany never really realizing the real territory that war covered. After the movie I went online to read more about the middle east effect of that war as the movie made me curious.

I was born during the five years between WWII and the Korean conflict and graduated high school during the Viet Nam war, so most of my teachers focused on those or the American revolution and the American Civil War. I don't remember being taught much about WWI at all and as a result know very little about it.

Thanks for the tip. I'll look for those books.

I was born in 1955, my father AND mother both fought in WW II - members of the resistance and had to go undercover - so WW II and the Cuban MIsile Crisis was the thing in our household for a 7 year old Frank. My history currucilum in 2ndary school and College was as for you WW I was fought in the trenches in France.

The WW I between the Ottoman Empire on one side (with Logistics support and some NAVY from Germany) and Britain & France a\on the other side was more significamt for History in the aftermath.

I am currenly reading the book "A Line In The Sand" by James Barr.

What went on between France and GB between 1915 and 1948 is nothing short of covert war at times with enormous efforts of scheeming to gain the upper hand. A lot of it had to do with British determination to maintain control over the Suez Canal as the waterway to India in the British Empire.

Looking at what some politicians were up to like Winston Churchill and Lloyd George they would have been put on trial today, the way Tony Blair almost was and some say George Bush should have been, for Irak War II.

Both books are a cracking good read to learn what really went on beoynd the Euro Centric view I have erroneously been fed.

Peace
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Re: Books

Post by dundrillin » Fri Apr 08, 2016 2:45 am

The Big Short by Michael Lewis chronicles the characters involved in the greatest financial crisis since the Great Depression namely the Sub-Prime fiasco of 2007. He gives the reader a great insight of the characters involved. Some individuals saw what was coming and made huge fortunes hence the title of the book. They were a very interesting bunch of eccentrics on the whole. Those responsible for causing the problem were either stupid, greedy or both. The reputation of the ratings agencies Ie Moody's and Stadard & Poors receives a severe mauling. After reading the book you have little confidence that a similar event will not be repeated. A movie of the same name has been released recently.

H

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Re: Books

Post by Frank La Rue » Sat Apr 09, 2016 3:17 pm

I have previously written avout the books "The Ottoman Endgame" and a Line in The Sand" to understand the backdrop og the Middle East problems. I am now 3/4 through the book "The Balfour Declaration" by Jonathan Schneer. This is a very informative and captivating read which explains more fully and with a lot of interesting getail the scheeming of the French. the British and the Zionists the leading up the the formation of Israel. A lot of historical research has gone into it and there are lots of relevant character details. Highly recommended reading.

Whilst I am at it I also recommend Nei lYoung's latest album Blue Note Cafee - Neil Young with a Big Band, very different
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Re: Books

Post by dundrillin » Fri Apr 15, 2016 2:20 am

The Red Gambit, book 6 Initiative has been out for a few months now. Some interesting twists in the plot and the usual tremendous battle scenes.

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Re: Books

Post by lomuamart » Sat Sep 30, 2017 9:01 am

It's been rather a long time since this thread was active and in the meantime, I've read loads of books that are too many to mention. However, some stand out for me so here's a really quick precis.

William Ryan Crime fiction based in Stalinist Russia. There are three books in the series, The Holy Thief, The Darkening Field and The Twelfth Department. Captain Alexei Dimitrevich is the main character and he reminds me of Bernie Gunther in Nazi Germany. Maybe not quite as "uppity" as Bernie but he does walk the tightrope between subversion and toeing the line. All three are good reads. It's not necessary to read them in order but there are characters who develop throughout the novels.

I have to make mention of Cormac McCarthy. Anything by him is good but Blood Meridian stands out. Not for the fainthearted. It's a rather violent book set in The American Wild West and Mexico. I could have nightmares about Indian attacks and scalping. Ouch!! Oh yes, No Country for [/b]Old Men isn't bad either and the film follows the book closely. The Road is also recommended.

Malcolm Mackey Glaswegian gangland stuff with a hit man as main protagonist. I've got through four of his books, The Necessary Death of Lewis Winter, How a Gunman Says Goodbye, The Sudden Arrival of Violence and The Night the Rich Men Burned. All are gritty, matter-of-fact "elimination" stories. Good stuff.

Patrick deWitt. I've only come across one of his books - The Sisters Brothers - which again is set in the Wild West. I thought it was an excellent book that tracks two hit men brothers who are sent out to kill someone who has stolen from the big boss. A tale of violence and redemption.

Ian McGuire. The North Water is a tale of a whaling expedition that goes horribly wrong. Drax is a terrible character. I wouldn't have wanted to be on that ship.

Edward Wilson. An American writer of spy fiction who served in Vietnam and afterwards renounced his American citizenship and settled in England to write. The Envoy, The Darkling Spy, The Midnight Swimmer, The Whitehall Mandarin and A Very British Ending all follow the trials and tribulations of William Catsby (supposedly a descendant of the Gunpowder Plot) and various others both British and American. It's probably worth while trying to read these in order.

Jerzy Kosinski's The Painted Bird is well worth a go although I couldn't really make my mind up about it. It follows a young boy who is abandoned by his parents in WW2 and wanders around an unspecified East European country (Poland?) encountering racism, anti sematism et al. A lot of it is pretty controversial and powerful stuff. The author got discredited somehow. I can't remember exactly why. Ah, plagiarism. He eventually committed suicide. His suicide note read "I am going to put myself to sleep now for a bit longer than usual. Call it Eternity." This isn't a book to cheer you up!!

Have been reading some James Lee Burke recently. He's written masses and so far I've enjoyed what I've read although I need some time between books.

Graeme Macrae Burnet's His Bloody Project is an excellent read. Set in a remote Scottish location in the 1860s, the story revolves around a triple murder committed by a 17 year old lad. The tale is told through interviews with him, witnesses, psychological evaluations etc. It gives a good account of how crofting, landed gentry and all and sundry in between lived in those days.

David Peace's The Red Riding Quartet is a series of four books set around the Yorkshire Ripper murders and police corruption. Again, I couldn't make my mind up about these books and didn't actually finish the last one. However, they did get a hook into me. Very strange writing style that won't appeal to everyone. I will finish the last book though - some time. Best to be read in sequence - 1974, 1977, 1980 and 1983. Well weird!!

I'm getting tired of typing but honourable mentions should go out to the following for some of their recent books. Peter James - Need You Dead, Daniel Silva - The Black Widow, Stuart McBride - In the Cold Dark Ground, Phillip Kerr - Prussian Blue.

I've missed loads. :banghead: :banghead: Hope some of you will find some of these books decent reading.

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Re: Books

Post by lomuamart » Sat Sep 30, 2017 9:07 am

Don't know what happened to the bits and pieces of above that should have been in bold. Seems like all of it is. Hey ho.

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Re: Books

Post by lomuamart » Sat Sep 30, 2017 9:30 am

How could I have forgotten?
John Burdett and his series of crime novels set in Bangkok. Sonchai Jitpleecheep is an awesome character who has to toe the line between his corrupt police boss and the arch enemy who's a corrupt army officer. Sonchai's mum runs a go-go bar on Soi Cowboy and his father is an unknown black American GI from the Vietnam war.
The first book (Bangkok 8) sees him investigating a rather strange death on the banks of the Chao Phraya. An American marine is found in a locked car together with untold cobras, vipers and pythons all of which have been given methamphetamine. The marine gets bitten a bit!!
All the books really made me laugh. The insights into Thai life and culture are to die for.

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Re: Books

Post by dtaai-maai » Sat Sep 30, 2017 11:47 am

You should try the Cormoran Strike series (just 3 so far, I think) by Robert Galbraith (rather surprisingly, aka JK Rowling). London-based PI, ex-military police, lost half a leg in Afghanistan. Now a BBC TV series as well.
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Re: Books

Post by sateeb » Sat Sep 30, 2017 12:59 pm

David Peace's The Red Riding Quartet is a series of four books set around the Yorkshire Ripper murders and police corruption. Again, I couldn't make my mind up about these books and didn't actually finish the last one. However, they did get a hook into me. Very strange writing style that won't appeal to everyone. I will finish the last book though - some time. Best to be read in sequence - 1974, 1977, 1980 and 1983. Well weird!!

I agree that the books were hard going, however in 2009 Channel 4 aired them as a trilogy...in my Top 10 of all time.

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