Terse and to the point!

No zombies. No vampires. No angels. No self-help. No horror.



Another re-read
Splendid Solution: Jonas Salk and the Conquest of Polio - Michael Prichard, Jeffrey Kluger

I grabbed this one out of the re-read pile to fill in time while I try to figure out what new book I want to read. I have read this one a couple of times already but not in the past five years, so it was time to trot it out again and give it a listen. Author Jeffrey Kluger is in the business of making science and recent events in the science world accessible to non-scientist (like me). He wrote this book in celebration of the 50th anniversary of the development of the polio vaccine in 2005. It is a well-crafted story that combines biography, history and even a little science. If you haven't read it yet, I do recommend it.

3.5 Stars
A geopolitical view of the world
Prisoners of Geography: Ten Maps That Explain Everything About the World - Tim Marshall, Scott Brick

All throughout this book I kept asking what he now had to say about this and that because it is three years since he wrote the book and Korea has a nuclear weapons capabilities now and the US has a new president and a number of other significant changes. Fascinating book. It will give you a whole new understanding of the world we live in.

2017 Books---- 161 and counting....
  1. Murder on the Orient Express -- re-read 
  2. Sourdough -- NEW68
  3. The Year of the Hare -- NEW67
  4. Engines of Change -- re-read
  5. Edward R. Murrow and the Birth of Broadcast News -- re-read
  6. They Do It with Mirrors --re-read
  7. Splendid Solution -- re-read
  8. The Secret Adversary -- re-read
  9. The Remains of the Day -- re-read
  10. Prisioners of Georgraphy -- NEW66  HISTORY15
  11. Hickory Dickory Dock -- re-read
  12. The Good Thief's Guide to Amsterdam -- re-read
  13. Magyk -- NEW65
  14. Safe Passage -- NEW64  HISTORY14
  15. Einstein -- re-read
  16. Drama -- re-read
  17. Packing for Mars -- NEW63 SCIENCE6
  18. Evans Above -- NEW62
  19. Death on the Nile -- re-read
  20. Alexander Hamilton --re-read
  21. And Then There Where None -- re-read
  22. The Sirens of Titan -- NEW61
  23. Secretariat -- NEW60 HISTORY13
  24. My Favorite Universe --NEW59  SCIENCE5
  25. American Ulysses -- NEW58  HISTORY12
  26. Gulp -- re-read [book club read]  SCIENCE4
  27. After the Funeral -- re-read
  28. Rocket Men -- re-read  HISTORY SCIENCE
  29. The Day of the Jackel --re-read
  30. 13 Things that Don't Make Sense -- NEW57 SCIENCE3
  31. The Stranger -- re-read 
  32. Murder Most Frothy -- NEW56
  33. 4:50 from Paddington --NEW55
  34. A Man of Some Repute -- NEW54
  35. Latte Trouble -- NEW53
  36. 10 Lb. Penalty --re-read
  37. Whip Hand -- re-read
  38. Venetia -- re-read
  39. The Unknown Ajax  -- re-read
  40. The Unfinished Clue -- re-read
  41. Twice Shy -- re-read
  42. Trustee From the Toolroom --re-read
  43. Trial Run -- re-read
  44. The Toll Gate --re-read
  45. To the Hilt -- re-read
  46. These Old Shades --re-read
  47. The Talisman Ring -- re-read
  48. Sylvester -- re-read
  49. Great Courses: The Mysterious Etruscans --NEW52 HISTORY11
  50. Great Courses: A Skeptic's Gide to American History --NEW51 HISTORY10
  51. Great Courses: Privacy, Property and Free Speech --NEW50
  52. Great Courses: History's Greatest Voyages of Exploration -- NEW49 HISTORY9
  53. Great Courses: An Economic History of the World Since 1400 --  NEW48 HISTORY8
  54. Persons of Interest -- NEW47
  55. The Portrait of Dorian Gray -- re-read
  56. Great Courses: Cycles of American Political Thought -- NEW46 HISTORY7
  57. The Invention of Nature --NEW45 SCIENCE 2
  58. Great Courses: Cultural Literacy for Religion NEW44
  59. Great Courses: Industrial Revolution NEW43 HISTORY6
  60. Sprig Muslin -- re-read
  61. So Disdained -- re-read
  62. Smokescreen --re-read
  63. Shattered --re-read
  64. Second Wind --re-read
  65. Ruined City -- re-read
  66. Round the Bend -- re-read
  67. Risk -- re-read -
  68. The Reluctant Widow -- re-read
  69. Regency Buck -- re-read
  70. Reflex -- re-read
  71. Rat Race -- re-read
  72. The Rainbow and the Rose -- re-read
  73. The Quiet Gentleman -- re-read
  74. Proof -- re-read
  75. Pastoral --re-read
  76. An Old Captivity -- re-read
  77. Odds Against - re-read
  78. The Nonesuch -- re-read
  79. No Highway --re-read
  80. Nerve -- re-read
  81. The Masqueraders -- re-read
  82. Longshot -- re-read
  83. The Lonely Road --re-read
  84. The Relic Master --42NEW
  85. Louder Than Words -- 41NEW
  86. Notorious RBG -- 40NEW HISTORY5
  87. Landfall -- re-read
  88. Lady of Quality -- re-read
  89. Starman Jones -- 39NEW
  90. The Secrets of Wishtide -- 38NEW
  91. Hidden Figures -- 37NEW HISTORY4
  92. Nothing to Fear -- 36NEW HISTORY3
  93. Bad News -- 35NEW
  94. Mrs. Fortescue Steps Out --34NEW
  95. Great Courses: American Ideals: Founding a 'Republic of Virtue' --33NEW HISTORY
  96. Anansi Boys -- 32NEW
  97. The Great Decision --31NEW HISTORY2
  98. What The F -- 30NEW
  99. The Crime at Black Dudley -- 29NEW
  100. Great Courses: The Illiad of Homer --28NEW
  101. Cairnaerie --27NEW
  102. In the Wet -- re-read
  103. In the Frame --re-read
  104. The Illiad & The Odyssey -- 26NEW  Bucket List
  105. Great Courses: The Odyssey of Homer  -- 25NEW
  106. Hot Money -- re-read
  107. High Stakes --re-read
  108. Spaceman --24NEW SCIENCE1 HISTORY
  109. Tess of the d'Urbervilles -- 23NEW
  110. Luck and Judgement -- 22NEW
  111. The Jungle Book --21NEW
  112. The Grand Sophy -- re-read
  113. Words on the Move -- 20NEW
  114. Frederica -- re-read
  115. Friday's Child --re-read
  116. Double Whammy -- re-read
  117. The Foundling -- re-read
  118. Flying Finish -- re-read
  119. The Spaceship Next Door --19NEW
  120. Great Courses: From Plato to Post-Modernism -- 18NEW
  121. Great Courses: English Grammar Boot Camp -- 17NEW
  122. Faro Daughter -- re-read
  123. The Far Country -- re-read
  124. False Colours -- re-read
  125. Even Money -- re-read
  126. Enquiry -- re-read
  127. Driving Force -- re-read
  128. Bloodline -- re-read
  129. Devil's Cub --re-read 
  130. The White Cottage Mystery -- 16NEW
  131. The Eyre Affair -- 15NEW
  132. On What Grounds -- 14NEW
  133. But for the Grace -- 13NEW
  134. Great Courses: The High Middle Ages 12NEW HISTORY
  135. Decider -- re-read
  136. Dead Heat --re-read
  137. Dead Cert --re-read
  138. The Danger --re-read
  139. Crossfire --re-read
  140. Cotillion --re-read
  141. The Corinthian -- re-read 
  142. The Readers of Broken-Wheel Recommend -- 11NEW
  143. Sunday the Rabbi Stayed Home -- 10NEW
  144. An Accidental Death --9NEW
  145. A Convenient Marriage --re-read
  146. Come to Grief -- re-read
  147. A Civil Contract -- re-read
  148. The Chequer Board -- re-read
  149. Charity Girl -- re-read
  150. The Breaking Wave --re-read
  151. Bret Farrar -- 9NEW
  152. Great Courses: Find Your Roots -- 8NEW
  153. Break In --re-read
  154. Great Courses: The Great Debate -- 7NEW HISTORY1
  155. Great Courses: 36 Books That Changed the World -- 6NEW
  156. Speaking American --5NEW
  157. You're Saying It Wrong --4NEW
  158. We are Legion (We are Bob) --3NEW
  159. Great Courses: English in America --2NEW
  160. Midnight Riot (aka A River in London) --1NEW
  161. Bolt -- re-read (continued from 2016)
I am abandoning this one
Privacy, Property, and Free Speech: Law and the Constitution in the 21st Century - Jeffrey Rosen

Calling it quits on this one. I can't make myself go back to it. I got his point in lecture one and I don't need to hear it over and over again.

4 Stars
Alexander Hamilton - Ron Chernow

It has been a couple of years since I read this and it is time to read it again.


How long has it been? Since before I joined BookLikes!

Free on Audible
The Home Front: Life in America During World War II - Martin Sheen, Audible Original

I'm not sure of the details of this offer--how long, who can cash in on the deal, etc., -- but currently Audible is offering this title for free. I haven't listened to it and have no idea if it is any good, but it's free.

Audible Sale Pile
American Ulysses: A Life of Ulysses S. Grant - Ronald C. White Jr., Arthur Morey Secretariat - William Nack, Grover Gardner The Odessa File - Frederick Forsyth, Frederick Davidson

I love shopping the sale pile. I found a bunch there that I already owned and three more to add to my library. This will keep me going for a while, don't you think. 

Not recommended at all
Murder Most Frothy - Cleo Coyle, Rebecca Gibel

The sheer stupidity of the main character is driving me crazy. I only continue to read it because I paid for it! Who walks into the ocean in the dead of night following the bad guy who is swimming back to his boat? Can believe she wasn't heard. Can't believe that she was able to swim the distance described. He was wearing flippers and a wetsuit; can't believe she got as close to his boat as she did. This is definitely the last of this series for me.

Filched From Facebook --Again!

Two-for-one on Audible this week
Latte Trouble - Cleo Coyle, Rebecca Gibel Murder Most Frothy - Cleo Coyle A Man of Some Repute: A Very English Mystery, Book 1 - Elizabeth Edmondson, Michael Page 4:50 From Paddington - Agatha Christie, Emilia Fox 13 Things That Don't Make Sense: The Most Baffling Scientific Mysteries of Our Time - Michael Brooks, James Adams The Stranger - Albert Camus, Jonathan Davis

At first I thought I wouldn't find anything in the sale pile but they had a whole category of cozy mysteries and I was able to fill my basket with some cozy reads--and some not so cozy reads like The Stranger and a title from The Flat Book Club list of possible reads. Now I will have plenty to keep me occupied.

Filched From Facebook

Welcome to The Flat Book Society

So the votes are in and tabulated and we're now officially 

The Flat Book Society!  Anyone interested in low-stress science (no dry, academic tomes here!) is welcome to join us.


A few points:


There will be a new group read once every other month, starting September 1st.


Books will be voted on by the group.


I have created a voting list to get us started, culled from the list Themis-Athena so very generously put together from the groups suggestions.  These are the top 10 books people indicated interest in reading.


Any member of the group can add books to this list.  Books must be non-fiction and the main subject must be Science.  Please do not add self-help or psychology books.  Please note that the BookLikes system assumes if you're adding a book, you're voting for it, so your vote will automatically be recorded for any book you add.


Any member can vote for any number of books, so don't think of this as a one-time vote for your favourite.  Vote for all the books you think you'd be interested in reading as part of the group.


I'll use the two books that receive the most votes by August 15th to create the first two club reads.  These will be our group reads for September and November.


The voting list will remain in place indefinitely, so as you find books that look like they might be of interest to the group, please add them.  (Chosen books will be rolled off the list.)


Please let me know if you have any questions I didn't cover here.  I've tried to make sure every book on the voting list has a summary in place, so please look over them and choose your poison!  

Reblogged from Murder by Death
The Skeptic's Guide to American History - Mark A. Stoler

The Iconoclast's Guide to American History. Well done but there was one thing that drove me nuts listening to this series of lectures. This guy sounds exactly like the campaign director character played by the late Ron Silver on The West Wing--same accent, same pacing, same stridency.


It is a good series of lectures that points out everything that we don't learn in school and all that we tend to forget about the events of American History as we move further away from them and start to paint these events with the brush of modernity.

I'm sure you will all agree



Privacy, Property, and Free Speech: Law and the Constitution in the 21st Century - Jeffrey Rosen

I'm just a couple of lectures in and I can tell that this discussion of privacy and property in the 21st century is going to leave me feeling angry and violated. I can't decide whether to do it all in one gulp and get it over with or to listen to one lecture at a time spread over many, many days.

4 Stars
From the Ancient Greeks to the Moon
History's Greatest Voyages of Exploration - Vejas Gabriel Liulevicius

I remember "the explorers" as being a big thing that was taught in my school system in elementary school and we dutifully learned all the names of the European explorers and where they went, etc. My goodness, we were parochial in our approach to history. So, what was fascinating for me was the scope of these lectures. They went back further into history, covering the ancient Greeks, and they were more global, not limited to European white males. Each lecture covered one explorer or exploration telling the story of the exploration and then commenting on its significance, why it was a pivotal moment human history.