I love a Good "Good Book" thread

ghost_of_lewis_samuels

Phil Edwards status
Oct 27, 2019
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Just finished The Passenger by Cormac McCarthy. Excellent. It's been a decade since I binged most of McCarthy's books and I guess I need to go back and reread them because while I certainly recall him being dark I don't recall him being humorous. At all. And The Passenger was both dark and funny. Reminded me a lot of Vonnegut in that respect tbh.

Thanks for the recommendation @ghost_of_lewis_samuels
check out Stella Maris next!
 
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Apr 18, 2012
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Looking for some Iain Banks style sci fi, I stumbled on "A Memory Called Empire" by Arkady Martine. Pretty good and smart world-building sci fi slash mystery novel...the next book in the series "A Desolation Called Peace" was good to.

I still wish I had more Culture Series to read...

Non-Fiction: S.C. Gwynne, His Majesty's Airship, about England's huge airship in the 1930s...
 

bruhdakine

Miki Dora status
Jul 7, 2003
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PNW
My 19 year old has been reading through some classics (currently reading Brave New World) and we've been telling him he needs to read something more 'fun' as well so he went through our bookcase and selected Barbarian Days. He's also got Tapping The Source, The Beach and A Man in Full on his list of upcoming selections. I'm envious. I wish I still had all of those on my unread list.

I just got The Darkest White for my birthday. I've heard some good things about it and CK is a hero of mine so I can't wait to have some time to dive in.
 
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crustBrother

Kelly Slater status
Apr 23, 2001
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check out Stella Maris next!
If you enjoy Stella Maris, which I did, I think this is a good companion read:

Relatively short, but fun to read further about some of the mathematicians and physicists cited in Stella Maris.
i REALLY enjoyed Stella Maris. its been, gosh... 31 years since i earned my BS in Applied Mathematics and tbh i have forgotten most of what i learned but one of the things that really fascinated me was that mathematicians often "invent" new mathematical systems for which there is no practical application until many years later. or never.

so what the hell is this math thing? and where does it come from?

in many ways Stella Maris is about those question. and SO much more. so much to absorb in that book with respect to math, music, language, and the mind.

it really resonated with me. except for his treatment of music. that really tripped me up. but maybe i didn't get what he was driving at there. i know i missed a ton of sh!t on the first read. will be reading it again very soon.

edit: reading Stella Maris reminded me that i never got around to reading this one...

geb.jpg
 
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ghost_of_lewis_samuels

Phil Edwards status
Oct 27, 2019
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i REALLY enjoyed Stella Maris. its been, gosh... 31 years since i earned my BS in Applied Mathematics and tbh i have forgotten most of what i learned but one of the things that really fascinated me was that mathematicians often "invent" new mathematical systems for which there is no practical application until many years later. or never.

so what the hell is this math thing? and where does it come from?

in many ways Stella Maris is about those question. and SO much more. so much to absorb in that book with respect to math, music, language, and the mind.

it really resonated with me. except for his treatment of music. that really tripped me up. but maybe i didn't get what he was driving at there. i know i missed a ton of sh!t on the first read. will be reading it again very soon.

edit: reading Stella Maris reminded me that i never got around to reading this one...

View attachment 179996

I was fascinated by but mostly not knowledgeable to really follow the math details in Stella Maris.

A good, and short related read from cormac here:

 
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crustBrother

Kelly Slater status
Apr 23, 2001
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I was fascinated by but mostly not knowledgeable to really follow the math details in Stella Maris.

A good, and short related read from cormac here:

interesting. that essay contains a term that i encountered for the first time just a couple days ago

"combinatorial grammar"

i can't seem to find the article now, but it was about this...

 

ghost_of_lewis_samuels

Phil Edwards status
Oct 27, 2019
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interesting. that essay contains a term that i encountered for the first time just a couple days ago

"combinatorial grammar"

i can't seem to find the article now, but it was about this...

pretty cool article
 
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bvendley

OTF status
Jul 18, 2018
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i REALLY enjoyed Stella Maris. its been, gosh... 31 years since i earned my BS in Applied Mathematics and tbh i have forgotten most of what i learned but one of the things that really fascinated me was that mathematicians often "invent" new mathematical systems for which there is no practical application until many years later. or never.

so what the hell is this math thing? and where does it come from?

in many ways Stella Maris is about those question. and SO much more. so much to absorb in that book with respect to math, music, language, and the mind.

it really resonated with me. except for his treatment of music. that really tripped me up. but maybe i didn't get what he was driving at there. i know i missed a ton of sh!t on the first read. will be reading it again very soon.

edit: reading Stella Maris reminded me that i never got around to reading this one...

View attachment 179996
Glad to hear you enjoyed it.
I don't think it's a book I'd recommend to everyone but I thoroughly enjoyed it. So much so that I read it twice and dug up whatever collateral I could find, Kekule problem etc...
I found the dialogues about where language comes from and how the subconscious predates it by thousands of years to be especially interesting.
 
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crustBrother

Kelly Slater status
Apr 23, 2001
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I found the dialogues about where language comes from and how the subconscious predates it by thousands of years to be especially interesting.
interesting and surprising - language development being a rapid viral infection vs a slow evolution is a concept i've never heard of before
 
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Kento

Duke status
Jan 11, 2002
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The Bar
Finished Anathem by Neal Stephenson a bit ago. What a book. Extremely slow paced in a sense but at the same time, I was never bored. The opposite - intrigued. I had to mull that ending over for a while, a few different ways that went? There were a lot of concepts brought forth that required some pauses in reading to dwell on

Been through some sh!t the last several months (near-lightning strike, hardcore endurance race) that I had to dig deep into myself. One very fast-paced with multiple quick choices made, all logical but faulty with the final choice being a really good one (emergency hitch/hail) with the other being a long-paced capability test that took more than I knew I had (and I had more). Both required shifting of mental models to match environment and are still very humblingly prominent in my mind so I knew it would be worth rereading Deep Survival by Laurence Gonzalez. It's a great book, flows well, lot of introspection with it. Most of my earliest memories are near-death experiences, with a decent amount of variety to them. It's crazy but you're the most alive by far when death is straight in your face; I've generally gotten better about managing risk over the years but the universe is creative in the ways of fucking you over - how do you deal with it? A book well worth reading.
 
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slipped_disc

Michael Peterson status
Jun 27, 2019
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Read City of Thieves last week. Haven’t loved burning through a book like that in a long time.

It’s got heavy doses of dark comedy throughout the book, but is probably best described as a coming of age story set in WW2 Russia. The two main characters are on a mission, and are polar opposites.

5/7 read

 
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Kento

Duke status
Jan 11, 2002
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Just got done with Dispatches by Michael Herr. Hell of a book, complete stream of consciousness, very vivid. Some of the source material from Full Metal Jacket in there, some great lines from the movie are in it. Must have been surreal for the speaker of those lines to see someone else say them on screen and think, "Son of a bitch! That's my line!"

Fairy Tale by Stephen King started off well, kind of dragged towards the last third or so. Kind of a Grimm style tale with some Lovecraftian elements. Fun enough read but not his best.