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Thread: What are you reading?

  1. #7051
    FORT Fogey
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    Re: What are you reading?

    I tried to read Life after Life. I couldn't make it past about 100 pages. I've heard enough people talk about it positively that it has to be better for some than it was for me. But the bouncing around in time did not make sense to me in the same way that some other time travel books have. I finally realized I couldn't follow it, didn't care about the characters, and move on to other books. I'm not familiar with the other two.

  2. #7052
    FORT Fogey Punkin's Avatar
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    Re: What are you reading?

    Season of the Witch: Enchantment, Terror, and Deliverance in the City of Love by David Talbot (founder of Salon Magazine)

    Season of the Witch: Enchantment, Terror, and Deliverance in the City of Love: David Talbot: 9781439108246: Amazon.com: Books

    Review:
    A fascinating book about San Francisco's wild history from the Sixties, through the tempestuous Seventies, into the early Eighties when the City comes together, after much trauma, to cope with the AIDS epidemic. It offers a major re-assessment of Mayor Dianne Feinstein's success in leading San Francisco out of the nightmare of the Jonestown massacre and the assassinations of Mayor George Moscone and Supervisor Harvey Milk. And Talbot also credits the 49ers football team of Joe Montana and Bill Walsh with helping San Francisco recover from the culture wars and violence of the '70s. This is a deeply reported book, not just a nostalgia trip. Even if you lived through these decades in San Francisco, you will discover things you never knew. And it's written in a very lively, passionate style. Talbot clearly cares about his City.
    This book was deeply personal for me because I lived it all. After the anti-war marches and (figurative) bra burnings to the Summer of Love, the cultural changes left my generation in a tailspin. The happy hippy-dippy days in the Haight (not my neighborhood!) turned into a nightmare of drug abusing youths filing in from all over up-tight America and wreaking havoc in my tradition bound, yet tolerant city. Then followed the horrors of the Zodiak Killer who threatened to blow up a bus full of children as we went through mandatory bussing for desegregation, making all of us fear for our children. The Zebra Killers were Black Muslims who were indiscriminately shooting whites (one woman killed in the laundrymat I used!). The SLA and Patty Hearst kidnapping, riots in the black ghettoes where firefighters like my dad were shot at. And while we watched in horror at the 900 bodies of Jim Jones' Jonestown mass suicides (murders), within just days our beloved mayor Moscone and Harvey Milk were murdered in City Hall. We were reeling! We will always love Deanne Feinstein for holding us all together afterward. It was difficult for me to relive those days in this well written book. It was very personal.

    Within 2 years though, Bill Walsh and Joe Montana and the 49ers turned our spirits around and united us, as Talbot says, as only a winning sports franchise can do for a city. We still had to go through the Aids epidemic, but we did it together, caring for our afflicted guys, refugees from an American Heartland that did not want them, in a way that no other city (New York) was able to. Going through those years of turmoil and fear made us into the tolerant, welcoming San Francisco and Bay Area we are today.

    Come visit! All of the nightmarish bad stuff is over with! Thank God. We're OK now. Better than OK!

  3. #7053
    50 years and counting! AZChristian's Avatar
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    Re: What are you reading?

    Embarrassed to admit that I'm reading "Kate Gosselin: How She Fooled the World." I'm addicted to anything that confirms she's always what I've suspected. Borrowed it free from Amazon Prime . . . because I wasn't about to invest one cent in it (other than my time).

  4. #7054
    Bitten Critical's Avatar
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    Re: What are you reading?

    Quote Originally Posted by AcookerTV View Post
    I tried to read Life after Life. I couldn't make it past about 100 pages. I've heard enough people talk about it positively that it has to be better for some than it was for me. But the bouncing around in time did not make sense to me in the same way that some other time travel books have. I finally realized I couldn't follow it, didn't care about the characters, and move on to other books. I'm not familiar with the other two.
    I'm reading it right now for a book club and am having the same issues you did. I may just not be in the right frame of mind to read it at the moment. I don't need to have it read for a few more months, so I may come back to it.
    Anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that 'my ignorance is just as good as your knowledge.' - Isaac Asimov

    I was thinking of the immortal words of Socrates, who said, "... I drank what?"

  5. #7055
    I won't forget Cootie's Avatar
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    Re: What are you reading?

    Quote Originally Posted by PGM35 View Post
    Our 3 choices for our next book club meeting:

    We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves - Karen Joy Fowler
    Amazon.com: We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves: A Novel eBook: Karen Joy Fowler: Kindle Store
    Meet the Cooke family. Our narrator is Rosemary Cooke. As a child, she never stopped talking; as a young woman, she has wrapped herself in silence: the silence of intentional forgetting, of protective cover. Something happened, something so awful she has buried it in the recesses of her mind.
    Now her adored older brother is a fugitive, wanted by the FBI for domestic terrorism. And her once lively mother is a shell of her former self, her clever and imperious father now a distant, brooding man.
    And Fern, Rosemary’s beloved sister, her accomplice in all their childhood mischief? Fern’s is a fate the family, in all their innocence, could never have imagined.

    Life After Life- Kate Atkinson
    Life After Life: A Novel - Kindle edition by Kate Atkinson. Literature & Fiction Kindle eBooks @ Amazon.com.
    On a cold and snowy night in 1910, Ursula Todd is born, the third child of a wealthy English banker and his wife. Sadly, she dies before she can draw her first breath. On that same cold and snowy night, Ursula Todd is born, lets out a lusty wail, and embarks upon a life that will be, to say the least, unusual. For as she grows, she also dies, repeatedly, in any number of ways. Clearly history (and Kate Atkinson) have plans for her: In Ursula rests nothing less than the fate of civilization.
    Wildly inventive, darkly comic, startlingly poignant — this is Kate Atkinson at her absolute best, playing with time and history, telling a story that is breathtaking for both its audacity and its endless satisfactions.

    The Giver (movie out on August 15)– Lois Lowery
    Amazon.com: The Giver (illustrated; gift edition) (Giver Quartet) eBook: Lois Lowry: Kindle Store
    Jonas' world is perfect. Everything is under control. There is no war or fear or pain. There are no choices. Every person is assigned a role in the Community. When Jonas turns twelve, he is singled out to receive special training from The Giver. The Giver alone holds the memories of the true pain and pleasure of life. Now, it is time for Jonas to receive the truth. There is no turning back.
    The Giver is considered a modern classic and is on YA reading lists all over the country as required reading. When my son read it in 7th grade, I hadn't read it yet. It is fairly short and he read it in one night. The next day he came to me and said, "I don't know what to think." I asked him "about what?" And he said, "About anything." It's a powerful book. Whether it gets chosen as your book club book, you should read it before seeing the movie. It's good. And there are sequels.
    inthegarden likes this.

  6. #7056
    FORT Fogey PGM35's Avatar
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    What are you reading?

    Quote Originally Posted by Cootie View Post
    The Giver is considered a modern classic and is on YA reading lists all over the country as required reading. When my son read it in 7th grade, I hadn't read it yet. It is fairly short and he read it in one night. The next day he came to me and said, "I don't know what to think." I asked him "about what?" And he said, "About anything." It's a powerful book. Whether it gets chosen as your book club book, you should read it before seeing the movie. It's good. And there are sequels.
    Thanks - yes I know it's won awards and it's on school reading lists and I have read it before. I loved it and can't wait to discuss it. Very powerful.
    We did choose it and yes we are seeing the movie 2 weeks after book club. Thanks!!


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
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  7. #7057
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    Re: What are you reading?

    I'm reading Murder at the National Gallery by Margaret Truman for my book club. We picked it because we thought it would be a quick, easy summer read. Not so much. I'm enjoying it, but it's not a quick read. My Name is Asher Lev was super fast. This is NOT. I'm nearly 100 pages in and still no murder! I hope I finish it in time to found out whodunnit!
    Anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that 'my ignorance is just as good as your knowledge.' - Isaac Asimov

    I was thinking of the immortal words of Socrates, who said, "... I drank what?"

  8. #7058
    Red Sox Nation Brooks's Avatar
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    Re: What are you reading?

    Just finished Nina Teicholz' The Big Fat Surprise. I have read several books similar to this and wasn't expecting much new, but there is actually a great deal more about the politics behind US food policy and why the so-called "healthy" polyunsaturated vegetable oils are actually rather dangerous. And it turns out that the Mediterranean Diet was a very successful marketing gimmick, better than the American Heart Association's low fat diet (because pretty much everything is) but not nearly as good as many other traditional ways to eat. Teicholz missed the mark in the very last chapter by downplaying the nutritional benefits of ample vegetables and fruit but it's a grand slam as to why low fat is generally a lousy approach and why there is really no evidence that saturated fats are behind our current epidemic of chronic disease. I highly recommend the book but urge it be read as a companion to Denise Minger's Death By Food Pyramid and Alice and Fred Ottoboni's The Modern Nutritional Diseases.

  9. #7059
    FORT Fogey Air Blobs Easy Champion inthegarden's Avatar
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    Re: What are you reading?

    Quote Originally Posted by AcookerTV View Post
    I tried to read Life after Life. I couldn't make it past about 100 pages. I've heard enough people talk about it positively that it has to be better for some than it was for me. But the bouncing around in time did not make sense to me in the same way that some other time travel books have. I finally realized I couldn't follow it, didn't care about the characters, and move on to other books. I'm not familiar with the other two.
    Thank goodness! I thought it was just me and the frame of mind I was in at the time.

    I heard an interview with Smith Henderson discussing his new book Fourth of July Creek on NPR. I picked it up from the library today. I hope it is as good as the interview.

  10. #7060
    Me and my shadow Gutmutter's Avatar
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    Re: What are you reading?

    Quote Originally Posted by Brooks View Post
    Just finished Nina Teicholz' The Big Fat Surprise. I have read several books similar to this and wasn't expecting much new, but there is actually a great deal more about the politics behind US food policy and why the so-called "healthy" polyunsaturated vegetable oils are actually rather dangerous. And it turns out that the Mediterranean Diet was a very successful marketing gimmick, better than the American Heart Association's low fat diet (because pretty much everything is) but not nearly as good as many other traditional ways to eat. Teicholz missed the mark in the very last chapter by downplaying the nutritional benefits of ample vegetables and fruit but it's a grand slam as to why low fat is generally a lousy approach and why there is really no evidence that saturated fats are behind our current epidemic of chronic disease. I highly recommend the book but urge it be read as a companion to Denise Minger's Death By Food Pyramid and Alice and Fred Ottoboni's The Modern Nutritional Diseases.
    I've recommended "Death by Food Pyramid" to several people after you recommended it to me. My family thinks I'm a "hop on every food fad" kind of person, but I'm just trying to find the healthiest way of life I can. After a cholesterol test came back high and I refused to go on statins, my doctor gave me a list of foods not to eat which was mostly saturated fats. I've done a lot of research since then and have learned a.) saturated fats have NOT been linked to high cholesterol and b.) high cholesterol - especially in women over 50 - does not indicate a higher mortality rate. In fact it is protective for things other than heart disease (like cancer). I really wish nutrition facts could be aligned in some meta form (like this book) and dispersed to doctors/public.
    One of the enemies of nutrition education IMO is Dr. Oz. He reports on every single diet craze that comes down the pike, often with opposite advice within one show. It drives me crazy.
    Count your blessings!

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