Amazon has whacked our affiliate account. Hosting Donations/Commitments $2063 of $1920 (Sept 13/18). In Hand $1466 (Lump sum payments minus paypal graft). Paypal Donation Link Here

Books Read 2019

Everything else!

Moderators: Bakhtosh, EvilHomer3k

Jeff V
Posts: 30900
Joined: Fri Oct 15, 2004 7:17 pm
Location: Nowhere you want to be.

Books Read 2019

Post by Jeff V » Wed Jan 02, 2019 10:33 am

I slightly surpassed my 2018 goal of 75 with 104. So I guess the goal for 2019 would be 105 112 must beat Freelunch. It's doable I guess if I can get over the 100-page per day hump, 2018 ended slightly under 95 per day. Sometime this year though I expect to lose access to one of two library system - and the better of the two at that. That could make things rather challenging.

Read
The Pharaoh Key by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child (A) :binky: :binky: :binky: :binky: :binky:
The Antiquities Dealer by Ed Protzel (K) :binky: :binky: :binky: :binky: :binky: :binky:
Stonehenge by Bernard Cornwell (B) :binky: :binky: :binky: :binky: :binky: :binky:
Minecraft - The Island by Max Brooks (A) :binky: :binky: :binky: :binky: :binky: :binky:
Fear by Bob Woodward (A) :binky: :binky: :binky: :binky: :binky: :binky: :binky:
The Meaning of Blood by Chuck Caruso (K) :binky: :binky: :binky:
The Eye of the World by Robert Jordan (A) :binky: :binky:
The Drunk Detective: A Dotty Davis Comedy Suspense by Mary Jean Curry (K) :binky: :binky: :binky:
Elevation by Stephen King (A) :binky: :binky: :binky: :binky: :binky:
Presidents of War by Michael Beschloss (A) :binky: :binky: :binky: :binky: :binky: :binky:

Addictarium by Nicole d'Settemi (K) :binky: :binky:
Playing for Pizza by John Grisham (A) :binky: :binky: :binky: :binky: :binky: :binky:
All the Beautiful Lies by Peter Swanson (A) :binky: :binky: :binky: :binky: :binky:
Princess by James Patterson (A) :binky: :binky: :binky: :binky: :binky:
The Family Lawyer by James Patterson (A) :binky: :binky: :binky: :binky: :binky:
Testimony by Scott Turow (A) :binky: :binky: :binky: :binky: :binky:
Leadership: In Turbulent Times by Doris Kearns Goodwin (A) :binky: :binky: :binky: :binky: :binky: :binky:
The House Next Door by James Patterson (A) :binky: :binky: :binky: :binky: :binky:
The Bishop's Pawn by Steve Berry (A) :binky: :binky: :binky: :binky: :binky: :binky: :binky:

Reading

Lilith's Children by Rachel Pudlik (K)
The Race to Save the Romanovs by Helen Rappaport (A)
Overrun - Dispatches from the Asian Carp Crisis by Andrew Reeves (K)

2019 Totals - Books read: 19 Pages Read: 7597 Pages per day: 94
2018 totals - Books read: 104 Pages Read: 32,646 Pages per day: 95
Last edited by Jeff V on Fri Mar 22, 2019 3:55 pm, edited 9 times in total.

User avatar
Paingod
Posts: 10083
Joined: Wed Aug 25, 2010 8:58 am

Re: Books Read 2019

Post by Paingod » Wed Jan 02, 2019 10:48 am

I don't have reading goals, but am starting to think I need to subscribe to Amazon's Kindle Unlimited program. I'm finding myself buying two or more books a week sometimes at $9.99 each. It seems like it would make more sense to get "over a million books" for $9.99 instead, but don't know if what I want to read will be on the list.

I like having a personal library and will often re-read books I own every few years, but it's getting expensive to keep feeding my Kindle.

So far this year, I've almost finished the second book of the Murderbot series. A quick, easy read - but enjoyable.
More than ever, now is the time to stand by the causes you believe in; donate and support to keep America great.
Reproductive Rights, Environmental Defense, Civil Liberties, LGBTQ Awareness, Immigration Rights
Currently playing: Mordor: Shadow of War, Curious Expedition

User avatar
El Guapo
Posts: 31902
Joined: Sat Jul 09, 2005 4:01 pm
Location: Boston

Re: Books Read 2019

Post by El Guapo » Wed Jan 02, 2019 11:22 am

Paingod wrote:
Wed Jan 02, 2019 10:48 am
I don't have reading goals, but am starting to think I need to subscribe to Amazon's Kindle Unlimited program. I'm finding myself buying two or more books a week sometimes at $9.99 each. It seems like it would make more sense to get "over a million books" for $9.99 instead, but don't know if what I want to read will be on the list.

I like having a personal library and will often re-read books I own every few years, but it's getting expensive to keep feeding my Kindle.

So far this year, I've almost finished the second book of the Murderbot series. A quick, easy read - but enjoyable.
What I've found super helpful is to sign up to BookBub.com. You can tell them which genres of books you like, and they'll send you a daily e-mail of eBook deals within those genres, usually books at $1 - $3. I've found a lot of great deals on books that I've been meaning to read anyway (including my current read, Nate Silver's book) for just a couple bucks, and now I have a pretty significant backlog of eBooks acquired on the cheap.

That plus checking out eBooks from your local library (which I think most libraries do at this point) makes reading pretty cheap.

Jeff V
Posts: 30900
Joined: Fri Oct 15, 2004 7:17 pm
Location: Nowhere you want to be.

Re: Books Read 2019

Post by Jeff V » Wed Jan 02, 2019 11:41 am

I get 1-2 free books a month from Library Thing Early Readers Program and another from Amazon Prime First Reads. The rest I get from the library just using a phone app, I never actually set foot in a library and while I borrow mostly audiobooks, they have a much larger selection of ebooks. In 2018, I read 104 books and purchased approximately 1 (and haven't read that yet).

User avatar
El Guapo
Posts: 31902
Joined: Sat Jul 09, 2005 4:01 pm
Location: Boston

Re: Books Read 2019

Post by El Guapo » Wed Jan 02, 2019 11:44 am

Last edited by El Guapo on Wed Mar 20, 2019 9:54 am, edited 2 times in total.

User avatar
Archinerd
Posts: 5786
Joined: Fri Aug 25, 2006 11:18 am
Location: Shikaakwa

Re: Books Read 2019

Post by Archinerd » Wed Jan 02, 2019 11:40 pm

++Read++
The Black Company by Glen Cook.
I bounced off this years ago on my first attempt. This time I couldn't put it down. This was nearly the last book on the 2018 list but I fell asleep before I could finish it New Year's Eve. That's right, I was reading a book on New Year's Eve AND fell asleep before midnight.
Everybody Lies: Big Data, New Data, and What the Internet Can Tell Us About Who We Really Are by Seth Stephens-Davidowitz

2018
Last edited by Archinerd on Mon Jan 21, 2019 2:02 am, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
Kasey Chang
Posts: 16997
Joined: Sat Oct 30, 2004 4:20 pm
Location: San Francisco, CA
Contact:

Re: Books Read 2019

Post by Kasey Chang » Thu Jan 03, 2019 1:25 pm

I am NOT going to count how many ebooks I read in 2018, as it probably in the hundreds. *sigh*

FWIW, the number of published reviews in 2018 on my other blog was... 1171-12 = 1159 Total published as of December 31st is 1700. And that's NOT counting the non-fic and scifi books I read.

Finished the Ascension series KGU offshoot. It ended on a huge deus ex machina, even though it was a very well setup deus ex machina. Not sure I like that ending, but it's... fitting end to the series.
Spoiler:
Molly and her crew basically became missile magnets, sacrificing themselves to prevent a war. Then somehow, the uber-aliens they were protecting reconstituted them from the wreckage a few weeks later.
Still Reading KGU offshoot "Deuces Wild" series, where Nickie, who ran off to a corner of galaxy, decided to destroy Skaines (evil pirates) when they attacked a colony she protected, while reading adventures of her aunt Tabitha, aka Ranger Two, who was cleaning up the universe in her own ways 50 years before her. This book is basically half Tabitha and half Nickie, both of whom are badasses on the ground and one-(wo)man killing machines. Though Tabitha is a bit more... comical, but then, such things can happen after losing someone. Nickie is still trying to control her emotions, lest she enjoyed killing too much. Just finished book 2 and working on 3.

Reading "the Sword Mage Chronicles" series, just finished #3. Good space adventure. Woman woke up with no memory, and was imprinted with afinity to a special sword. Except a warlord with almost infinite resources was looking for it too. She was rescued by an android and 3 mercenaries, who were former Gods, now merely powerful mortals. The sword may hold a key to reopening the realm of Gods to the outcasts, but that also means the bad guy can't get it... Book 1 is losing the sword, Book 2 was getting the sword back, and Book 3 is instigating an android rebellion. So far, so good.

Reading another KGU offshoot "Shadow Vanguard" series. Jack Marber, former assault marine for the Empire, now a trader on the far frontier, just got a better ship, better equipment, and a special mandate from the now ex-empire now Federation spymaster... Keep an eye out on the frontier. And he just got a new crew member... who may be a wolf-shifter... Their first assignment was supposed to be easy: deliver crowd control barriers to a planet who just lost their president, and be the Federation emissary to attend. But they arrived in the middle of a gravity storm... the weather scientist, mad with the grief of losing his wife, has sabotaged the entire weather control system to destroy the capital. And it's increasingly clear that death of the president was not an accident, but assassination and power grab... Can Shadow Vanguard save the planet and destroy the conspiracy?

So far, so good. It's pretty darn good adventure so far.

Reading a different series: The Cadicle by A K DuBoff. The story spans decades, and the first book is free. Basically, the Taran Empire is hiding a huge secret... They are in a war against the Baksens, but it's a war no one except the select few in the TSS (the military) knows about. And two people with telepathic abilities are brought together for a prophesy... Their child may be the Candicle that will save them all... But when the Baksen collaborators and agents kidnap the child prodigy 15 years later, a desperate rescue mission will be launched...

Finished Book 1, and it's a bit of a mixed bag... The idea of a huge conspiracy that spans an empire and decades is interesting, and the relationships are okay. It's space opera, and it's pretty good. Combat is a bit ho-hum though.

I have put in all of my 2018 reviews into my drafts folder, so that's good. :)
My game FAQs | Join Massdrop and see what sort of deals they have! | Playing: Total War Battles: Shogun / Chinese Parents

User avatar
dbt1949
Posts: 20394
Joined: Wed Oct 13, 2004 12:34 am
Location: Hogeye Arkansas

Re: Books Read 2019

Post by dbt1949 » Thu Jan 03, 2019 5:12 pm

I just finished Murder on the Orient Express. It's odd but I like the movie adaptions better than the book.
Ye Olde Farte
Double Ought Forty
aka dbt1949

User avatar
Kasey Chang
Posts: 16997
Joined: Sat Oct 30, 2004 4:20 pm
Location: San Francisco, CA
Contact:

Re: Books Read 2019

Post by Kasey Chang » Fri Jan 04, 2019 4:52 am

Finished Shadow Vanguard 2 and 3. Both are good military adventures. Two was the crew investigating reports of a death cult, a pleasure planet, and a serial killer breaking out of prison. Three has the crew stuck in the middle of... a zombie outbreak.
My game FAQs | Join Massdrop and see what sort of deals they have! | Playing: Total War Battles: Shogun / Chinese Parents

Jeff V
Posts: 30900
Joined: Fri Oct 15, 2004 7:17 pm
Location: Nowhere you want to be.

Re: Books Read 2019

Post by Jeff V » Fri Jan 04, 2019 5:38 pm

The Antiquities Dealer by Ed Protzel (K) :binky: :binky: :binky: :binky: :binky: :binky:

I liked the premise well enough - underground research to clone famous people from history. David Greenberg, however, is a rather unlikely action hero and seems awfully reliant on dumb luck to stay alive than an innate talent for heroism. He is also oddly ambivalent about his fate - maybe it's a Jewish thing, but I found it to be an interesting part of his persona. This appears to be the first book in a series - it'll be interesting to see if the author expands on the premise mentioned above or whether something altogether different.

Jeff V
Posts: 30900
Joined: Fri Oct 15, 2004 7:17 pm
Location: Nowhere you want to be.

Re: Books Read 2019

Post by Jeff V » Fri Jan 04, 2019 5:49 pm

The Pharaoh Key by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child (A) :binky: :binky: :binky: :binky: :binky:

The Gideon Crew series has become more unreal with each volume. Now in it's 5th, Preston and Child are gonna have some 'splaining to do if they plan to trot him out for #6.

The company he was working for was suddenly shuttered when the owner reached his ultimate goal at the end of the last book. Disgruntled and still dying, Crew and fellow agent Manuel Garza discover a computer running a decryption routine on an ancient relic (running for 5 years) had completed successfully. Determined to find out what is actually at the location uncovered and agreed to split any financial windfall equally, they set out to the Egyptian desert. Guides refused to take them where they want to go, telling them that nobody ever returns. Of course, that doesn't stop our intrepid heroes who go on to stumble upon an ancient Egyptian tribe still very much following middle Kingdom traditions. And that includes enslaving our heroes for a rousing month of tomb building.

User avatar
Holman
Posts: 20243
Joined: Sun Oct 24, 2004 8:00 pm
Location: Approximately Wissahickon

Re: Books Read 2019

Post by Holman » Sun Jan 06, 2019 10:18 am

My 2018 reading was very spotty apart from my teaching responsibilities, and I wasted a ton of time not doing it.

Max Hastings, Vietnam: An Epic Tragedy, 1945-75. Thorough and unsparing narrative from one of the best military historians.
George J.R.R.T. Martin, A Game of Thrones. Rereading.
Stephen Greenblatt, Tyrant: Shakespeare on Politics. More essay than study, but Greenblatt is strong in Bardology.
William Shaksper, Hamlet. (Teaching.)
Wlm Shake‑speare, Romeo and Juliet. Why not?

Chris Hayes, A Colony in a Nation. Skimmed in haste, this is still powerful criticism of American law & order.
Mary Shelley, Frankenstein. (Teaching.)
Last edited by Holman on Mon Feb 04, 2019 7:04 pm, edited 5 times in total.
Much prefer my Nazis Nuremberged.

User avatar
Jaymann
Posts: 8185
Joined: Mon Oct 25, 2004 7:13 pm
Location: California

Re: Books Read 2019

Post by Jaymann » Sun Jan 06, 2019 1:20 pm

Just finished the audio book of Dracul by Dacre Stoker and J.D. Barker.This is a prequel to Dracula, and could have been called The Diary of Bram Stoker (though it also draws from other journals). I have not read any vampire novels, so this was a change from my usual Sci-Fi and fantasy diet. Very gothic. All the traditional strengths and weaknesses of vampires are present, except they are not vaporized by sunlight, merely weakened. What I liked most is the book was read by an actual cast, not one guy with a falsetto voice for the female characters. I give it :binky: :binky: :binky: :binky: :binky: 1/2.
Jaymann
]==(:::::::::::::>

User avatar
Kasey Chang
Posts: 16997
Joined: Sat Oct 30, 2004 4:20 pm
Location: San Francisco, CA
Contact:

Re: Books Read 2019

Post by Kasey Chang » Sun Jan 06, 2019 3:35 pm

Finished KGU: Deuces Wild series (4 books), where Nikki and Tabitha, from respective timelines, fight the good fight against bad guys, and Nikki contemplates her return to Federation space, while possibly fall in love, after helping a prince complete his own quest.

Finished Sword Mage Chronicles (4 books), where Bentley and her travellers of the ship Chezed was able to defeat the evil Commander Emroth in book 4. I feel the last book has too much of a deus ex machina feel, where basically she shows up with the sword, finally figured out how to use it, then arrived just in time for the bad guy's fleet to about to pound their allies into oblivion, then managed to do a couple moves that got the sword to unleash superpower that not only destroyed the flagship in one hit, but also annihilated all of the enemy fleet except for a few scouts hiding in the outskirts that turned and ran at first sign of trouble. And obviously the UBG, Emroth's boss, happens to have a clone of Emroth available. *cough cough*

Finished KGU: Precious Galaxy (4 books). Ghost squadron, based on the Battlecruiser Ricky Bobby, was just ambushed, and the entire crew taken. There was only three survivors, two of which were not onboard at the time. Someone created a "monster" cloud that infiltrated the ship, and disassembled all of the crew. Only the ship's genius engineer survived the attack and trapped the monster in a forcefield. Now the ship's remaining crew called in assistance... an ex-cop who prefers shoveling manure to solving crimes, and a flight school cadet who hadn't flown anything for real, just sims. Together, they have to travel to the Precious galaxy, confront an enemy that had spent decades chafing at Federation's control, and may have developed the most power weapon, but only to feed one man's mad megalomania: to own the most powerful computer ever, powered by a collection of the best human minds, "removed" from their bodies, and merged into a single entity. Now the ex-detective and the not-quite-pilot, have to rescue the entire crew of "Ghost Squadron", and figure out how to restore them back to physical bodies, while defeating the evil genius... all while finding the best coffee in the galaxy... while, one of them any way.

It's interesting setup, I'll say that. Use some of the characters in the previous Ghost Squadron series, while moving in some new blood. But another galaxy? Really? The action was pretty good though.

Now reading KGU: Enemy of My Enemy series.
My game FAQs | Join Massdrop and see what sort of deals they have! | Playing: Total War Battles: Shogun / Chinese Parents

User avatar
freelunch
Posts: 1151
Joined: Wed Oct 13, 2004 8:49 am
Location: Cairns, Australia

Re: Books Read 2019

Post by freelunch » Sun Jan 06, 2019 9:35 pm

I follow the reading threads here but seldom post because I don't like reviewing what I've read (though I do love a good list).

Last year I finished 111 books, up from 36 in 2017 and 15 in 2016 (and not long before that my yearly total got as low as 5).

Grabbing a front page spot in this year's thread while I still can.

Currently Reading
The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller

Books Finished in 2019
01. A Silent Voice, Volume 5 by Yoshitoki Oima
02. The Education of Caroline by Jane Harvey-Berrick
03. P Is for Pterodactyl: The Worst Alphabet Book Ever by Raj Haldar
04. When We Were Crowned by Auryn Hadley
05. Book Love by Debbie Tung
06. Cards of Love: The Moon by Sierra Simone
07. Whispers and the Roars by K. Webster
08. Born To Run by Bruce Springsteen
09. The Castle of Earth and Embers by Steffanie Holmes
10. Love in the Time of Dinosaurs by Kirsten Alene
11. The Castle of Fire and Fable by Steffanie Holmes
12. The Lost Flowers of Alice Hart by Holly Ringland
13. ABC⚡DC - A Rock & Roll Inspired Alphabet Book by Lola Willow
14. The Castle of Water and Woe by Steffanie Holmes
15. Fuck Valentine's Day by C.M. Stunich
16. The Castle of Wind and Whispers by Steffanie Holmes
17. Die, My Love by Zoe Blake, Addison Cain, Stevie J. Cole, Ashleigh Giannoccaro, Jane Henry, Julia Sykes & Celia Aaron
18. Submissive's Guide To BDSM Vol. 1 by Matthew Larocco
19. The Castle of Spirit and Sorrow by Steffanie Holmes
20. Surviving Amber Springs by Siobhan Davis
21. Cirque: Act 1 by Ashleigh Giannoccaro
22. A Pinch of Sass by Chloe Gunter & Jarica James
23. Cirque: Act 2 by Ashleigh Giannoccaro
24. Leah on the Offbeat by Becky Albertalli
Last edited by freelunch on Mon Mar 25, 2019 6:26 am, edited 23 times in total.
Books I finished in: 2019 | 2018 | 2017 | 2016

User avatar
Kasey Chang
Posts: 16997
Joined: Sat Oct 30, 2004 4:20 pm
Location: San Francisco, CA
Contact:

Re: Books Read 2019

Post by Kasey Chang » Mon Jan 07, 2019 1:30 pm

Finished KGU: Enemy of My Enemy series (3 books so far, 4th coming this month)

The cat-like residents of a little planet, i.e. the Furlorians just wanted to be left alone. There are only 200 or so of them. Their ancestors went out to middle of nowhere and wanted it that way. But one day, an enemy of the Federation, the Wyvvans, landed. They attacked a Federation dreadnought but failed. The counterattack left them heavily damaged and they crashed landed on the planet. After discovering a coveted energy mineral, the Wyvvans only want the residents dead... negotiations are not needed. But the Furlorians are not going down without a fight...

In Book 1 they mounted a guerilla campaign and ultimately defeated the destroyer captain and killed most of the crew.

In Book 2 they were forced to evacuate when the Wyvvans arrived in an armada and only some lucky breaks and a Wyvvan collaborator allowed them to escape, but they have their own agendas... But they need to reach Federation space for refuge (and the Wyvvan collaborator do not want that...)

In Book 3, they became an unofficial Federation "troubleshooter team" going undercover to recover an agent trying to get his planet to join the Federation, but it's clear that the politics and intrigue on the planet means no one can be trusted, when their convoy was attacked by zealots...

(Actually, 4th book was just published, will download ASAP, where the Furlorians went to reconquer their home planet)

Reading KGU: Rise of Magic series (8 books, currently on book 3)

In the far future Irth became a realm of magic/fantasy instead of technology, and people like Bethany Anne and Michael are simply legends. When Hannah, living in the slums of the city was hunted by magic hunters for powers she doesn't' understand, she was suddenly rescued by a powerful wizard... He was Ezekiel, the founder of the city. He had left the city Arcadia in the hands of his most trusted disciple, Adrian, but the vision had been corrupted. Adrian was using the resources of the city to build something, and magic had been outlawed except for the very rich (and the academy), all in the name of "public safety". Ezekiel realized Hannah have potential to be an even more powerful wizard than himself, so he must carefully guide Hannah. Along the way, they will collect various allies... a mercenary (dwarf) captain, a tech wizard trainee (who can't wield magic, but knows tech), another street kid with no power except a lot of spirit, and the mystics with a lot of mind magic. But even this ragtag army can't fight a city head-on, where magic was untrusted, religion was perverted, and hunters and zealots roam the streets...

I don't generally read fantasy, but this one is not bad so far. Like it.
My game FAQs | Join Massdrop and see what sort of deals they have! | Playing: Total War Battles: Shogun / Chinese Parents

User avatar
Scuzz
Posts: 9155
Joined: Tue Jul 08, 2008 5:31 pm
Location: The Arm Pit of California

Re: Books Read 2019

Post by Scuzz » Mon Jan 07, 2019 5:20 pm

Guns, Germs and Steel by Jared Diamond

I got this used a couple years ago and finally decided to read it after reading 1492 by Charles Mann a couple months ago. It is not as "entertaining" as 1492 but it does contain some very interesting observations. I also found it basically supported what I believed to be the answers as to why some peoples/societies developed differently from others. Not an easy read but worth the trouble.


The Waterworks by E.L. Doctorow

A first person narrative about a missing persons case in 1870 New York City. The story is told by a newspaperman who went looking for a missing freelance writer who was his friend. Told in a sometimes strange time traveling back and forth way that early on at least kind of muddies up the story. It is an interesting read, a good story of the times if you will, but if you are looking to read something by Doctorow I would recommend Ragtime or Billy Bathgate.

User avatar
Isgrimnur
Posts: 58951
Joined: Sun Oct 15, 2006 12:29 am
Location: Dallas, TX
Contact:
Isgrimnur’s avatar
Offline

Re: Books Read 2019

Post by Isgrimnur » Mon Jan 07, 2019 5:22 pm

Diamond is not held in high regard by the (actual) historians that post on reddit.
Silver - 2k

Autobots and Starfleet officers — we fight together!

User avatar
Smoove_B
Posts: 38908
Joined: Wed Oct 13, 2004 12:58 am
Location: Kaer Morhen

Re: Books Read 2019

Post by Smoove_B » Mon Jan 07, 2019 5:45 pm

Last edited by Smoove_B on Wed Mar 06, 2019 12:18 pm, edited 3 times in total.

User avatar
Scuzz
Posts: 9155
Joined: Tue Jul 08, 2008 5:31 pm
Location: The Arm Pit of California

Re: Books Read 2019

Post by Scuzz » Mon Jan 07, 2019 9:02 pm

Isgrimnur wrote:
Mon Jan 07, 2019 5:22 pm
Diamond is not held in high regard by the (actual) historians that post on reddit.
Looking there the reaction is actually pretty balanced. But I would assume the basis of Diamond's assertions would be argued against by some.
Last edited by Scuzz on Tue Jan 08, 2019 4:09 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Jeff V
Posts: 30900
Joined: Fri Oct 15, 2004 7:17 pm
Location: Nowhere you want to be.

Re: Books Read 2019

Post by Jeff V » Tue Jan 08, 2019 10:32 am

Scuzz wrote:
Mon Jan 07, 2019 9:02 pm
Isgrimnur wrote:
Mon Jan 07, 2019 5:22 pm
Diamond is not held in high regard by the (actual) historians that post on reddit.
Looking there the reaction is actually pretty balanced. Buy I would assume the basis of Diamond's assertions would be argued against by some.
Diamond is good at connecting the dots and creating a beautiful picture of a peach tree. Then someone else uses the same dots and creates an elephant. They both might a compelling case which is right, but I've been reading Diamond since his Discover Magazine days and have always enjoyed his peach trees.

User avatar
Kasey Chang
Posts: 16997
Joined: Sat Oct 30, 2004 4:20 pm
Location: San Francisco, CA
Contact:

Re: Books Read 2019

Post by Kasey Chang » Tue Jan 08, 2019 2:54 pm

Finished KGU: Rise of Magic series, all 8 books

The end felt like a bit of deus ex machina, but it was set up really well. I think it ended a bit too quickly though. Still, a good end to kick *** adventure that's fantasy, yet clearly have KGU links.
My game FAQs | Join Massdrop and see what sort of deals they have! | Playing: Total War Battles: Shogun / Chinese Parents

User avatar
Bad Demographic
Posts: 7694
Joined: Wed Oct 13, 2004 9:21 am
Location: Las Cruces, NM

Re: Books Read 2019

Post by Bad Demographic » Tue Jan 08, 2019 6:03 pm

Reading:

Books read (or unfinished):
Lost Boys: The True Story of Captain Hook by Christina Henry
No Middle Name by Lee Child
The Collapsing Empire by John Scalzi
The Consuming Fire by John Scalzi
Hall of Mirrors by Christopher Fowler
Mazerynth by Gryndyl
Last edited by Bad Demographic on Tue Feb 12, 2019 11:49 pm, edited 4 times in total.
"Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities." Voltaire
He who haha's last, haha's best. ~ Nelson Muntz
Books Read in 2012
Books Read in 2013
Books Read in 2014
Books Read in 2015

User avatar
Kasey Chang
Posts: 16997
Joined: Sat Oct 30, 2004 4:20 pm
Location: San Francisco, CA
Contact:

Re: Books Read 2019

Post by Kasey Chang » Wed Jan 09, 2019 12:36 pm

Finished: War of the Angels Book 1, A Sacred Pact. Demon invasion of Earth, special forces teams that react to incursions, lead by an Angel named Katie, who's paired with an ex-demon named Pandora (ex-wife of Lucifer). The special teams are all "possessed" by a demon, but they are sorta "on our side", as they help the body heal. This is a sequel to the other series "War of the Damned" so you probably should read that first. In this book they encountered a big baddie that even an angel have problem defeating... just as hell's minions cook up another scheme to invade Earth... Good action, but to get more out of it you need to start with the other series.

Read two other books that will not be mentioned here. :)

Total so far: about 28
My game FAQs | Join Massdrop and see what sort of deals they have! | Playing: Total War Battles: Shogun / Chinese Parents

User avatar
Isgrimnur
Posts: 58951
Joined: Sun Oct 15, 2006 12:29 am
Location: Dallas, TX
Contact:
Isgrimnur’s avatar
Offline

Re: Books Read 2019

Post by Isgrimnur » Wed Jan 09, 2019 2:21 pm

I read a few more last year, but lost track of keeping the log updated. I will try to be better this year.
  1. The Dungeoneers: Blackfog Island
  2. The Republic of Pirates: Being the True and Surprising Story of the Caribbean Pirates and the Man Who Brought Them Down
Silver - 2k

Autobots and Starfleet officers — we fight together!

User avatar
Isgrimnur
Posts: 58951
Joined: Sun Oct 15, 2006 12:29 am
Location: Dallas, TX
Contact:
Isgrimnur’s avatar
Offline

Re: Books Read 2019

Post by Isgrimnur » Thu Jan 10, 2019 11:08 am

The Republic of Pirates: Being the True and Surprising Story of the Caribbean Pirates and the Man Who Brought Them Down

Blackfog Island was better.

The book covers the late 17th to early 18th century period of piracy operating in and around Nassau in the Bahamas. A decent covering of the history, but not the most scintillating listen.
Silver - 2k

Autobots and Starfleet officers — we fight together!

User avatar
ImLawBoy
Forum Admin
Posts: 11244
Joined: Tue Oct 12, 2004 9:49 pm
Location: Chicago, IL
Contact:

Re: Books Read 2019

Post by ImLawBoy » Thu Jan 10, 2019 11:33 am

Read
Happy Doomsday - David Sosnowski. This was a free Kindle First book. The basic setup is pretty simple - almost everyone in the world drops dead. While there are vague hints of other survivors, we focus on three high schoolers. Lucy is goth girl in Atlanta who is pregnant by her gay best friend. Marcus is a repentant wannabe Jihadist from Oklahoma. Dev is a social outcast near Detroit whose pharmacist stepfather (who is his deceased father's brother) has diagnosed him as having Asperger's. The story more or less revolves around these three trying to find other survivors (or trying not to be found). It was OK. The author tried to focus on the reality of a world where everyone just dies in place (lots of bodies, stench, rats, giant packs of feral pigs who have mated with giant farm pigs, etc.), but then glosses over things like gasoline still being effective after so much time. That's just a minor quibble, though. Ultimately, the book didn't lead to much, which may have been the point. It's more lighthearted than you might expect a post apocalyptic book to be, which kept things moving along nicely. The reason for the apocalypse was never explained (which I'm fine with), nor was the reason our three protagonists survived (although there is some speculation). Not a bad read for an atypical look at the apocalypse.
Adulthood Rites - Octavia E. Butler
Dungeoneers: Mazerynth - Jeffrey Russell
Six Scary Stories - Selected and Introduced by Stephen King
The Dog of the South - Charles Portis

Reading
Black Leopard, Red Wolf (The Dark Star Trilogy Book 1) - Marlon James
Doctor Sleep - Stephen King


2018 - 16 books
We had subs. It was crazy

User avatar
Kasey Chang
Posts: 16997
Joined: Sat Oct 30, 2004 4:20 pm
Location: San Francisco, CA
Contact:

Re: Books Read 2019

Post by Kasey Chang » Thu Jan 10, 2019 12:50 pm

Finished "Metal Legion 2: Frozen Fire" (Finished book 1: Scorpion's Fury earlier)

Captain Xi Bao and the crew of Elvira, an 80-ton combat mech, has survived the desert, but now the Terran Armor Corp (the only mechanized unit in Terran Combat Corp) is being sent to an ice planet... The planet is technically human (uninhabited), with two other alien forces on the planet. But the boss has a secret order... There is a THIRD alien species on the planet, and the armored corp is ordered to escort the attempt to make first contact... But no plans survive contact. The nominally neutral aliens attacked, the corp has been infected by virus which ruined weapon accuracy, and the aliens have stealth systems that not even Terran sensors can penetrate... And they are definitely trying to prevent this first contact... Esp. when the aliens being contacted did not seem to be friendly... But Captain Xi will do her duty... only to reveal an even greater conspiracy...

Good combat sequences, as the aliens pull no punches. Aliens pop out of sheets of ice, drop tiny suicide bomb robots, overwhelm defenses with missile barrages, even drop mass drivers from high altitude or orbit. Add power struggles within (the admirals of the navy is trying to fold all combat command into the navy) and without (discovery about human's tech history and other conspiracies) and it's an interesting mix of hard combat mixed with grand conspiracy / astropolitique 5/5

Finished two other books that will not be mentioned here.

Total read: 31.
My game FAQs | Join Massdrop and see what sort of deals they have! | Playing: Total War Battles: Shogun / Chinese Parents

User avatar
Jaymann
Posts: 8185
Joined: Mon Oct 25, 2004 7:13 pm
Location: California

Re: Books Read 2019

Post by Jaymann » Thu Jan 10, 2019 12:57 pm

ImLawBoy wrote:
Thu Jan 10, 2019 11:33 am
Read
Happy Doomsday - David Sosnowski. This was a free Kindle First book. The basic setup is pretty simple - almost everyone in the world drops dead. While there are vague hints of other survivors, we focus on three high schoolers. Lucy is goth girl in Atlanta who is pregnant by her gay best friend. Marcus is a repentant wannabe Jihadist from Oklahoma. Dev is a social outcast near Detroit whose pharmacist stepfather (who is his deceased father's brother) has diagnosed him as having Asperger's. The story more or less revolves around these three trying to find other survivors (or trying not to be found). It was OK. The author tried to focus on the reality of a world where everyone just dies in place (lots of bodies, stench, rats, giant packs of feral pigs who have mated with giant farm pigs, etc.), but then glosses over things like gasoline still being effective after so much time. That's just a minor quibble, though. Ultimately, the book didn't lead to much, which may have been the point. It's more lighthearted than you might expect a post apocalyptic book to be, which kept things moving along nicely. The reason for the apocalypse was never explained (which I'm fine with), nor was the reason our three protagonists survived (although there is some speculation). Not a bad read for an atypical look at the apocalypse.
Couldn't you find an electric car and hook it up to a windmill generator?
Jaymann
]==(:::::::::::::>

User avatar
ImLawBoy
Forum Admin
Posts: 11244
Joined: Tue Oct 12, 2004 9:49 pm
Location: Chicago, IL
Contact:

Re: Books Read 2019

Post by ImLawBoy » Thu Jan 10, 2019 4:07 pm

Could I do that? Probably not. I would not likely have survived the apocalypse, however, for spoilery reasons that I won't give away on the off chance someone else wants to read this book.

In the book two characters do stumble upon an oasis of electricity in the suburbs of Chicago where some wind turbines are still active and pumping juice. I can't imagine those turbines would stay productive for much longer than the gas was effective, though.
We had subs. It was crazy

User avatar
Isgrimnur
Posts: 58951
Joined: Sun Oct 15, 2006 12:29 am
Location: Dallas, TX
Contact:
Isgrimnur’s avatar
Offline

Re: Books Read 2019

Post by Isgrimnur » Thu Jan 10, 2019 4:10 pm

Next Era Energy Resources
Wind turbines generally require preventative maintenance checkups two to three times per year.
Silver - 2k

Autobots and Starfleet officers — we fight together!

xenocide
Posts: 269
Joined: Tue Oct 19, 2004 4:15 am

Re: Books Read 2019

Post by xenocide » Thu Jan 10, 2019 4:56 pm

Reserved

User avatar
Kasey Chang
Posts: 16997
Joined: Sat Oct 30, 2004 4:20 pm
Location: San Francisco, CA
Contact:

Re: Books Read 2019

Post by Kasey Chang » Fri Jan 11, 2019 4:50 am

Finished JF Holmes' "Invasion 3-book set". I read volume 1 last year, and it was pretty good. Vol 2 and 3 managed to dial up the tempo and made it better. Even the world building was quite good.

It has been more than a decade since the Confederated Earth Forces have been defeated by the Invy invaders. They have orbital platforms that can drop mass driver strikes anywhere in the globe, plus a virus that killed everyone north and south of 30th parallel. They are also armed with plasma weapons and other technological advances. The CEF fleet had been destroyed, major cities and installations leveled. Majority of population had perished. But Terrans will never give up. A young man's life is changed forever when two strangers arrived at his homestead: they are CEF special forces, and they are there to get the "boy general" back into active service. For the Earth forces may have been defeated, but they have a plan... and it will take a lot of luck and sacrifice to free Earth from the Invy... But only if they can somehow disable the orbital platforms, destroy the two Invy ships in the system... AND close the jump gate... Without getting overrun. Across the world, wars are fought on every continent, and old weapons are renewed and updated... Abrams tank got miniature A/M engines. Battleships are rearmed with mass driver cannons and first-gen A/M generators... but it is the heart of the warrior willing to make the ultimate sacrifice that will free Earth... or die trying.

Lots of death and destruction, people making the sacrifice, etc. etc. 4.5/5

2 other books I shall not mention here.

Total read: 35
My game FAQs | Join Massdrop and see what sort of deals they have! | Playing: Total War Battles: Shogun / Chinese Parents

User avatar
hitbyambulance
Posts: 5826
Joined: Wed Oct 13, 2004 3:51 am
Location: Map Ref 47.6°N 122.35°W
Contact:
Battlefinch’s avatar
Loading…

Re: Books Read 2019

Post by hitbyambulance » Fri Jan 11, 2019 11:14 pm

Philip K. Dick _The Crack in Space_ - certainly not one of his better books, probably one of his worst. man, this guy can be an godawful writer, and that's coming from a self-admitted PKD fanboy

User avatar
Kasey Chang
Posts: 16997
Joined: Sat Oct 30, 2004 4:20 pm
Location: San Francisco, CA
Contact:

Re: Books Read 2019

Post by Kasey Chang » Sat Jan 12, 2019 11:43 am

Finished "Feared by Hell" by Michael Anderle... KGU guy writes urban fantasy.

The world had changed since the Oricerans came out 20 years ago... Now the world is full of magic users alongside tech users, and there are plenty of bounty hunters out there... Mr. Browonstone is one of those elite mercenary bounty hunters. He can turn his body into metal (temporarily), which made him almost unbeatable in hand-to-hand combat. But when his dog disappeared, he had to place his trust in a little girl, who is blind, but can sense energy (and work almost as well as sighted). Then he had to pick up a partner, a freelance archaeologist Shay, who has a mysterious past and is way too good in combat to be "merely" a scholar. But when he had to save the girl, and hunt relics with the archaeologist, he got embroiled in a giant conspiracy of betrayal and destiny that he would never expect... And evil will get a smackdown...

Not bad, not bad for an alternate urban fantasy that doesn't involve too much weres and vamps and whatnot. 4.5/5

-----

Finished KGU/Age of Madness: Dawn of Chaos by Daniel Willcocks

Caitlin always dreamed of joining her brother, the head ranger, to explore the outside of town, which is full of the "Mad", basically zombies that only wanted human blood, and their scratches and bites can infect humans. When she finally got the chance, she found the world outside was NOTHING like she was taught. While mad did roam the forest, she met a vampire... rumored to have all died out. And soon learned that the governor, who lived in lap of luxury with the best woman attending him (think Jabba the Hutt) while the rest of town suffered, knew there was a vampire in the "mansion", and no one who ventured there have ever returned... Except Kaitlin. And the governor has plans... He wants vampire and were under his control, as he wants to control ALL the outlying villages (which no one in town knew) out of fear... and his guards are always out collecting tribute... and abusing citizens, esp women. When Caitlin decided to join Maryann, the vampire, and escaped, her brother was thrown in jail, and that started a chain of events that will change the town forever... and start a revolution toward recovery for all humanity.

4 book series, this is just book 1. Kaitlin turned out to be a leader even better than her brother, with an innate sense of justice. Good events and turning points. 5/5

-----

Finished two more books that won't be mentioned here.

Total read: 39
My game FAQs | Join Massdrop and see what sort of deals they have! | Playing: Total War Battles: Shogun / Chinese Parents

User avatar
Jaymann
Posts: 8185
Joined: Mon Oct 25, 2004 7:13 pm
Location: California

Re: Books Read 2019

Post by Jaymann » Sat Jan 12, 2019 4:16 pm

hitbyambulance wrote:
Fri Jan 11, 2019 11:14 pm
Philip K. Dick _The Crack in Space_ - certainly not one of his better books, probably one of his worst. man, this guy can be an godawful writer, and that's coming from a self-admitted PKD fanboy
This is an unfortunate truth. At his best PKD is one of the finest ever. But some of his stuff is unreadable, so choose wisely. I think it is at least partially due to cranking out stories in order to make a living in the 50's and 60's.
Jaymann
]==(:::::::::::::>

User avatar
hitbyambulance
Posts: 5826
Joined: Wed Oct 13, 2004 3:51 am
Location: Map Ref 47.6°N 122.35°W
Contact:
Battlefinch’s avatar
Loading…

Re: Books Read 2019

Post by hitbyambulance » Sat Jan 12, 2019 6:19 pm

Jaymann wrote:
Sat Jan 12, 2019 4:16 pm
hitbyambulance wrote:
Fri Jan 11, 2019 11:14 pm
Philip K. Dick _The Crack in Space_ - certainly not one of his better books, probably one of his worst. man, this guy can be an godawful writer, and that's coming from a self-admitted PKD fanboy
This is an unfortunate truth. At his best PKD is one of the finest ever. But some of his stuff is unreadable, so choose wisely. I think it is at least partially due to cranking out stories in order to make a living in the 50's and 60's.
and there's still many more to read. i'd call Terry Gilliam one of my favorite film directors, but he too has a share of (very) high points and some utter dross. i respect those who aren't afraid to try new approaches and rely on instinct in their creations, even if they bomb completely... i think there's a life lesson there.

User avatar
Jolor
Posts: 2891
Joined: Wed Oct 13, 2004 8:25 am

Re: Books Read 2019

Post by Jolor » Sat Jan 12, 2019 6:25 pm

Last edited by Jolor on Sun Mar 24, 2019 7:21 pm, edited 9 times in total.
So sayeth the wise Alaundo.

User avatar
Kasey Chang
Posts: 16997
Joined: Sat Oct 30, 2004 4:20 pm
Location: San Francisco, CA
Contact:

Re: Books Read 2019

Post by Kasey Chang » Sun Jan 13, 2019 3:43 pm

FWIW: The Witcher Book 2: Time of Contempt is down to $2.99 (normally $9.99) on Amazon ebook. Book 1 is $7.99, so I'll hold off on that. I generally don't buy a book over $4.99 nowadays.

-----

Finished Blood Sweat and Pixels by Jason Schreier ($2.99) and crew of Kotaku.com, details the background stories of how different games were born, and the background struggles you probably never heard about. How Stardew Valley, a one-man's obsession and tribute became a hit, how Bioware almost destroyed itself building Dragon Age: Inquisition, how Bungie created a mess in Destiny and spend months fixing it... and how "Star Wars 1313" died with a whimper in the wake of LucasArts sellout to Disney... and many other stories. Worth a reading if you like game development or the "backgrounds stories" of tech.

-----

Finished "KGU/AOM/Caitlin Chronicles Book 2: Into the Fire" by Daniel Willcocks

Caitlin's liberation of her hometown was barely enough. Guards may have pledged loyalty to her, but it's clear they are planning something. And the evil governor had escaped through a tunnel into the forest. After putting key people in charge, Caitlin and her band of Revolutionaries are out chasing the governor... and arrived at a town where the townfolks were enthralled by a priest (previously, the town's trash handler) and his enforcers, known as the Firestarters. And the governor's out there, with his own evil plans to exact revenge...

Good amount of action. One member of the team, Mary-Anne, is a vampire, and everybody calls her "Ma" as she's the oldest (by far). Taking down a town is not difficult. Taking down a town with minimal casualties with just a small band? That'd be a challenge, esp. for Caitlin, who's not enhanced except her sense of justice.

-----

Finished "Brownstone Book 2: Rejected by Heaven" by Michael Anderle (KGU author's urban fantasy series)

Brownstone needs a special artifact for his young half-Oriceran charge, even as he had to send her to a special magic school. And the only way he can get it is to ask his business partner Shay, part-time archaeologist (read: Tomb Raider), possibly ex-assassin, to go with him to Mexico to retrieve an artifact rumored to be hidden by one of Zhen He's lieutenants, the Dragon Sabre of Guang Yu. In the meanwhile, he's about to take down a bounty in town, a criminal who wanted to be known by the moniker "Fire King", for he's a firestarter... And in Mexico, it seems there's a necromancer there by the name of "Sombra"... a level 5 "preferred dead" bounty...

Good amount of adventure and action. There's a big conspiracy as Brownstone's earlier actions came back to haunt him. Still kicking ass, of course.

-----

Two other books that I will not mention here. :)

Total read: about 44
My game FAQs | Join Massdrop and see what sort of deals they have! | Playing: Total War Battles: Shogun / Chinese Parents

User avatar
Kasey Chang
Posts: 16997
Joined: Sat Oct 30, 2004 4:20 pm
Location: San Francisco, CA
Contact:

Re: Books Read 2019

Post by Kasey Chang » Wed Jan 16, 2019 4:45 am

Finished KGU: Enemy of My Enemy Book 4: Vengeance by Tim Marquitz

The cat people previously forced from their planet is going to take back their planet... or die trying. With help of one android who has the ability to remote control a whole fleet as well as shuttles, and some bots, they will do the impossible: take down a superdreadnought and its escorts, WHILE fending off fighters, ground troops, and more. For they have to do this the hard way: enemy have dug in positions right among the slave laborers. But they have came too far to fail...

Somehow, while the plot did progress properly, somehow it just doesn't quite flow right. Why not just perform the "final maneuver" immediately and thus, gain space superiority, kill the gate, THEN carefully take out the ground defense? Tactically it just didn't make sense. Still, it's good battles. 4/5

-----

Finished Steelheart by Brandon Sanderson

The world had been taken over by the Epics... people with superpowers, after the event known as "Calamity". There are High Epics... People with EXTREMELY powerful abilities, and low epics... people with useful but hardly super abilities. David Charleston knew both... esp. Steelheart, because Steelheart killed his father. Steelheart is impervious to known weapons, can fly, and even shoot energy beams. But David had seen Steelheart bleed... when he was eight. And for that, Steelheart destroyed a good portion of Chicago... Because he can't afford for anyone to find out about his weakness. Now David is eighteen, he needs the help of the shadowy rebel group known as the Reckoners... a group of normals who take down abusive and evil epics... so he can take out Steelheart. But first, the group needs to figure out Steelheart's weakness...

Wow, this is one tour de force, with enough plot twists to keep my head spinning, and even an extra one AFTER they took down the big baddie. That's some good plotting that I didn't even see coming. 5/5

All three books in the series are on sale for $1.99 each. I bought all three.
My game FAQs | Join Massdrop and see what sort of deals they have! | Playing: Total War Battles: Shogun / Chinese Parents

Post Reply