Monday, August 18, 2014

Books I've Read

According to this blog, it's been well over a year since I've read a book but that presumes a truth to the philosophical question:  if a book review is unposted, does that mean a book hasn't been read?

Ha!  I've read books.  I just haven't posted about them.  Here's a list, in no particular order, of what I've read in the last 16 months or so:

Stephen Hunter's latest Sniper's Honor.  Bob Lee Swagger learns about a Russian, female sniper from World War II which, of course, has modern day repercussions.  Plenty of shooting and sniper lore and a harrowing, surrealistic battle scene between Nazi tanks and Commie tanks.  You haven't read anything like this before.
Lawrence Block's The Thief Who Counted The Spoons.  Delightful, but then the whole series is which meant I had to re-read the other 10 Bernie Rhodenbarr novels in the series to confirm it. and that lead me to re-read A Ticket to the Boneyard, which is anticipation of the upcoming movie of his book, A Walk Among the Tombstones which should be pretty good.  I mean, it's Liam Neeson against the bad guys.  What more could you want?
For some reason I turned back to Martin Cruz Smith's Gorky Park.  I've blogged here about the rest of the series but you don't really know how good the first was until you go back there and see for yourself what Smith managed to do.  As good as the series is, the first is the best.  
I don't know why I read Robert Harris' The Ghost.  I've like his other stuff:  FatherlandEnigma, and Pompeii, all of which I must've read before this blog since I don't see where I posted my thoughts on these before.  But I'd blogged about the movie, which I liked, despite many reasons not to, and I read the Kindle version which means I must've gotten a deal on it.  Whatever.  I enjoyed it.  I especially liked the behind-the-scenes look at ghost-writing and the publishing world.  Nice twist at the end, too.
Both volumes of Hemingway's Complete Letters.  (Link goes only to the first volume but you can get to the second volume from there.)  Sorry.  For aficionados only.  

So by my count that's 17 books or a little over a book a month.  Not much of a pace but it'll do.

Sunday, August 17, 2014


Holy, moly, it's been a lifetime since I've updated here.  Blake was good enough to challenge me for the funny stuff last month and though I'm loathe to disappoint him, looking back over these posts I see there's a disappointing amount of funny and an overwhelming amount of banality.  Sorry, friend Blake.  Let me try to do better.

I started this blog for a reason - I just can't remember what it was.  Oh, right.  Here's the reason.  And here's the first post, six long years ago.  And here's a secret:  I'd actually started this blog way before that first post.  For some reason, I'd deleted the first version and so the first posts are now down the memory hole.

I've title this post "Blogging" and tagged it that way as well, but I see I've used that tag 82 times - 83, now - and I seem to blog a dismayingly amount about not blogging.  Which I'm doing now.  But with Twitter and Facebook, has blogging become obsolete?

Could be.  Those social media platforms offer a lot and I've found myself over there to be far more active than I have been over here.  Why?  I can't rightly say.  Both platforms offer an immediacy, and an audience, that I don't get over here on Blogger but this blog is where I started and I really should either stoke the fires over here or give it up altogether.

Which is all to say, I really need to get back to blogging.  Some things just won't work on Twitter or Facebook.