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Thu May 07, 2015 at 11:00 AM PDT

Monthly Book Post, April 2015

by AdmiralNaismith

What I read this month, with an emphasis on the 17th Century. In this edition:

The Ornament of the World, by Maria Rosa Menocal
Rules for Direction of the Mind; Principles of Philosophy; The Passions of the Soul, by Rene Descartes
The Law of War and Peace, by Hugo Grotius
The Anatomy of Melancholy, by Robert Burton
Table Talk, by John Selden
Letters and Minor Works, by Blaise Pascal

Barney's Version, by Mordecai Richler
The Goblin Emperor, by Katherine Addison
The Dark Between The Stars, by Kevin J. Anderson

...and the usual assortment of history-based murder mysteries. Enjoy!

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Thu Apr 02, 2015 at 11:38 AM PDT

Monthly Bookpost, March 2015

by AdmiralNaismith

What I read last month.  In this edition...
Geometry, by Rene Descartes    
The Harvard Classics "Voyages and Travels" volume  
Scientific treatises, by Blaise Pascal  

Hadrian the Seventh, by Frederick Rolfe
Dwellers in the Mirage, by A. Merritt
Down and Out in Paris and London, by George Orwell  
Into the Heart of Borneo, by Redmond O'Hanlon  
The Bonfire of the Vanities, by Tom Wolfe  
Money--Mastering the Game, by Tony Robbins the usual assortment of history-based mystery stories.  Enjoy!

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What I read last month, featuring but not limited to, this year's focus on the Elizabethan era and the 17th Century.  In this month's edition:

The Defeat of the Spanish Armada, by Garrett Mattingly  
Objections to the Meditations, and Replies, by Descartes, Gassendi, Hobbes, et al  
De Corpore, by Thomas Hobbes  
The Sea, The Sea, by Iris Murdoch  
Sputnik Sweetheart, by Haruki Murakami  
You Suck (A Love Story), by Christopher Moore the usual assortment of historical based mystery novels.  Enjoy!

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And so a new year of reading begins.  As I continue my decade-long foray into the great literature through history, I undertake the 17th Century, bookended a little, from the final years of Queen Elizabeth to the final years of Louis XIV. I plan to go to about 1715 and marvel at the halfway point, that I will have covered about 2000 years of civilization in half a decade, while the other half will cover just 300 years and be by far the greater challenge.  

Major tomes to tackle will include Burton's Anatomy of a Melancholy The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Newton's Principia, Spinoza's brief but dense Ethics, and Bayle's Historical/Critical Dictionary.  Since mysteries set in historical times add some fun to the enrichment, I'm continuing to look for those as well. I've found Edward Marston, Leonard Tourney, Susanna Gregory and Laura Joh Rowland, who explore the Elizabethan and Jacobean stage; the Restoration, and 17th Century Japan. If anyone knows of others set in the time, especially King Louis XIV's court or the Cromwell/Commonwealth period, please let me know.  Otherwise, I hope we all enjoy the trip.

In this month's post:

Discourse on Method/Meditations, by Rene Descartes
The Sceptikal Chymist, by Robert Boyle
The Syntagma Philosophicum, by Pierre Gassendi
Paradise Lost by John Milton

The Gormenghast Trilogy, by Mervyn Peake
Pale Fire, by Vladimir Nabakov

...and the usual assortment of historical mysteries from the era.


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What I read in December, including some emphasis on the 16th Century and a lot of light holiday reading as well.  In this installment:

The Defense of Poesy, Sir Philip Sidney
Holinshed's Chronicles of England
Don Quixote, by Miguel Cervantes
On Animal Generation, by William Harvey
La Salle and the Discovery of the Great West, by Francis Parkman
...and the usual assortment of historical mysteries set in the era.

Embers, by Sandor Marai
Vanish in an Instant & How Like an Angel, by Margaret Millar
Jailbird, by Kurt Vonnegut
The Time Traders, by Andre Norton
Amsterdam, by Ian McEwan
Small Gods, by Terry Pratchett
Ill Met by Moonlight, by Sarah A. Hoyt
Lock In, by John Scalzi


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Blatantly feed a child

Boobs on the ground

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What I read last month. Some from or about the 15th-16th Century; others from all over the this edition:

Essays (Vol. III), by Michel de Montaigne
Jerusalem Delivered, by Torquato Tasso
The Stripping of the Altars, by Eamonn Duffy
The Reformation, by Will Durant

The Posthumous Memoirs of Bras Cubas, by Joaquim Maria Machado de Assis
Cat's Cradle, by Kurt Vonnegut, Jr.
An Imaginary Life, by David Malouf
The Hours, by Michael Cunningham
Your Hate Mail Will Be Graded, by John Scalzi
----and the usual assortment of murder mysteries in historical settings.


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Thu Nov 06, 2014 at 11:00 AM PST

Monthly Bookpost, October 2014

by AdmiralNaismith

What I read last month, with a smattering of Tudor-era history and a lot more from the modern era.  This month:

Spenser's The Faerie Queene
Bacon's On the Advancement of Learning
Browne's Religio Medici

Theodor Fontaine's The Stechlin
Nigel Nicolson's Portrait of a Marriage
Bernard Malamud's God's Grace
Maria Dahvana Headley's The Year of Yes
Thomas Piketty's Capital in the Twenty First Century
....and the usual assortment of historical mystery novels.


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What I read last month, with some emphasis on the Great Books of the 16th century.  In this edition:

Donna Tartt's The Goldfinch
Vonnegut's Bluebeard
Francis Bacon's Essays
William Harvey's On the Motion of the Heart and Blood, & On the Circulation of the Blood
Sir Philip Sidney's The Countess of Pembroke's Arcadia
May Sarton's Journal of a Solitude
Giordano Bruno's Dialogues Concerning Cause, Principle and Unity
Charles Robert Maturin's Melmoth the Wanderer
Primo Levi's The Periodic Table
...and the usual assortment of period murder mysteries, from Edward IV to Henry VIII.


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Thu Sep 04, 2014 at 11:00 AM PDT

Monthly Bookpost, August 2014

by AdmiralNaismith

What I read last month, including the latest in my decade-long "Great Books through History" trek. In this installment:

Montaigne's Essays, Vol. II.
Francis Bacon, The New Organon

Robert Louis Stevenson, Travels with a Donkey
Nicholas Rankin, Dead Man's Chest (Travels After Robert Louis Stevenson)
Angus Wilson, No Laughing Matter
David Lodge, Changing Places
Robert Jordan, The Dragon Reborn
Brian Moore, Cold Heaven
Eleanor Catton, The Luminaries
...and the usual assortment of historical mysteries.

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Just in time to post on Labor Day
(tune: Schoolhouse Rock, "No More Kings")

Picket signs and marches
Fallen Golden Arches
Pre-formed meats and starches, Whoppers and lies...

Keith Kramer had a dream
To build a restaurant in the South
In 1953
He would feed many a hungry mouth
Finally reached Miami Beach
And someone said, "Hooray!"
We'll call it "Burger King", and it'll rock the USA!

Small Business Admin had a program
They got their finance with a loan from Uncle Sam!

Gonna build a Burger King for sure, King
With a little help from SBA
Consumers will be loyal to flame-broil
Because they can have it all their way!

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Thu Aug 07, 2014 at 11:00 AM PDT

Monthly Bookpost, july 2014

by AdmiralNaismith

What I read this month:

Huizinga's The Waning of the Middle Ages
Writings of Martin Luther
Galileo's Dialogues Concerning the Two New Sciences
...and the usual array of historical murder mysteries, this time including Josephine tey's The Daughter of Time and several by Kate Sedley.

Hillary Rodham Clinton's Hard Choices
Robert Jordan's The Great Hunt
Charles Stross's Neptune's Brood
John W. Campbell's Who Goes There
Ian McEwen's Enduring Love
Thelonius Legend's Sins of the Father
James Thurber's The Wonderful O

...and Kos contributer Thelonius Legend's Sins of the Father.


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