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Welcome to bookchat where you can talk about anything...books, plays, essays, and books on tape.  You don’t have to be reading a book to come in, sit down, and chat with us.

I have borrowed an old laptop from my daughter-in-law and I am not sure if it is going to get me through until my own computer is fixed or not.
Thus the title.

Many of my readers have probably suspected that I did more reading the past days without a computer and they are right.

I finished From Heaven Lake by Vikram Seth which is about his travels in 1981 from northwest China (where the riots were this summer) to his home in Delhi by way of Tibet and Nepal.  It was interesting to read about his adventures.

I read The Hearth and Eagle by Anya Seton which is an older story I had missed.  I did enjoy the characters.  It is set in Marblehead and has a flashback to the earliest settlers then goes on with Hesper's story which happens at the time of the Civil War.  

I read Cashelmara by Susan Howatch that was also set in the Civil War and after.  Her characters include Marguerite and later Sarah who come from America as brides to the Lords of Cashelmara.  Cashelmara is in Ireland where there are many troubles.  The narrator viewpoint changes from person to person.

I also read a short book of Scifi/Fantasy short stories by Gordon R. Dickson called In Iron Years.  Though they were written long, long ago, they were still pertinent.  

Currently, I am reading Letters from Nuremberg by Dodd which is very interesting. Thomas Dodd was heavily involved in the trials and wrote letters home.  His son, our Senator Chris Dodd, makes some pointed remarks about our country on page 26.

Thus I fear that each step we take from presenting ourselves as unambiguously dedicated to preserving the rule of law is a step in the direction of a less secure United States.  What good is the information gained from torturing one Iraqi insurgent if doing so causes us to be despised by a million Iraqi chidlren.

I am also reading essays by Michael Chabon called Reading and Writing Along the Borderlands.

pg. 12 in reference to the book Trickster Makes This World by Lewis Hyde:

For Trickster is also the god of the marketplace, of the city as intersection of converging roads and destinies, as transfer point-as the primary locus of entertainment, that powerful means of exchange-and perhaps that is why cities, Indianapolis excepted, have always been built at the places where incommensurates meet-sea and land, mountain and plain, coast and desert.  Trickster goes where the action is,  and the action is in the borders between things.

I am reading Time and Chance by Sharon Kay Penman which is historical fiction about Henry II of England.

I am still reading Pagan Holiday as my travel book by Tony Perrottet.  In my rocking chair I have reached Greece with him. Forgive me Tony, but the lack of the word "food" in the following sentence made me smile or thinking of Seneca's plays, maybe not.  

page 135 which is describing the 15 month grand tour that Nero made in Greece:

Guests were served on silver plates embedded with diamonds...

I am also rereading the Harry Potter books. My husband and I saw the movie on July 16th and it made me get out the books for an overview.  Of course, I only see the movie actors as the characters this time through.

I am always interested in what you are reading or hoping to read.

Diaries of the week:

Write On! Celebrity "writers" and other annoyances.  
by SensibleShoes

Ode to a Frozen Foot -- A Parky Poem!  
by Deep Brain Diarist

This Week in Science  
by DarkSyde
Sat Jul 25, 2009 at 10:30:03 AM EDT

You wanna get paid for artwork, or to write science articles, poetry, or sci-fi short stories? I plan to have a comprehensive post on several orgs that do so in the near future. But in the meantime I came across just such a site and there's no subscription required:

Strange Horizons has an all-volunteer staff, which enables us to pay our fiction and poetry writers professional rates. We are committed to expanding the readership, professional status, and literary appreciation of speculative fiction in all media, for all people.

Translation: they're working for free and willing to pay prospective writers. So please, if you're interested, send only finished pieces, or queries on ones you have ready to go, for consideration here.

Why We Need the Alternative Press  
by 123idaho

Without their hands tied by rules that don’t always apply, the Weekly and Hoffman were able to tell a compelling tale of not only Nazi sympathizers and Holocaust deniers in Boise, but also the story of how Irving and his followers operate. Exposing the secretive nature of the gathering, Irving’s unwillingness to allow people who disagree with his views to debate him openly, and the attitude of his followers was a story that needed to be told.

But the account of how Daigle became a part of the story by choice, then struggled with the wisdom of her decision; the admission by Hoffman that he was initially upset about what she did and that both of them wrestled with the right way, if any, to publish the story, is as remarkable as the reporting about Irving. Rarely are we on the inside of that process, and the careful and raw honestly with which Hoffman and Daigle came forth is both a treat and a gift.

Intricate Webs (graphics)  
by rserven

Healthy Minds & Bodies: Hiking with Car-Eating Marmots -- Pix!  
by RLMiller

Let's read a book together! Guns, Germs and Steel: Chapter 2, a Natural Experiment of History  
by plf515

NOTE: plf515 has changed his book talk to Wednesday mornings early.

sarahnity’s list of DKos authors has grown so much that she has her own diary.

sarahnity says:

It turns out that we have quite a few authors hanging out here who have published books in the real world.  A while ago, I started keeping a list of books by Kossacks, former Kossacks and Kossacks-once-removed.  I was posting it each week to the diary series What Are You Reading and Bookflurries, but the list has grown long enough, that I've decided to turn it into a diary and post it as a weekly series on Tuesday evenings.

Not all Kossack authors may wish to lose their anonymity, so I am only including the author's UID if he has outed herself here (gender confusion intended).  If you'd like to be included on the list, or if you know of an author who is left off, please leave a comment or email me.


Originally posted to cfk on Wed Jul 29, 2009 at 05:00 PM PDT.

Also republished by Readers and Book Lovers.


What is your favorite summer food?

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| 45 votes | Vote | Results

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