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review 2018-06-23 04:39
The Massacre of Mankind: Authorised Sequel to The War of the Worlds by Stephen Baxter
The Massacre of Mankind: Sequel to The War of the Worlds - Stephen Baxter

The Massacre of Mankind: Authorised Sequel to The War of the Worlds by Stephen Baxter is a detailed followup about the Martian invasion of England. It's a brutal story but easy to envision. It is a long book and I believe much of it could have been edited out. I still gave it four stars.

 

I received an advanced reading copy from Crown Publishing and NetGalley. That did not change my opinion for this review.

 

Link to purchase: https://www.amazon.com/Massacre-Mankind-Authorised-Sequel-Worlds-ebook/dp/B014SV4TM6

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text 2018-06-22 22:56
Book Recs Solicited: Freedom and Future Library
On Liberty and The Subjection of Women (Penguin Classics) - John Stuart Mill
All Quiet on the Western Front - Erich Maria Remarque
To Kill a Mockingbird - Harper Lee
Step Across This Line: Collected Nonfiction 1992-2002 - Salman Rushdie
The Displaced: Refugee Writers on Refugee Lives - Aleksandar Hemon,Marina Lewycka,Ariel Dorfman,Viet Thanh Nguyen,Fatima Bhutto,David Bezmozgis,Porochista Khakpour,Vu Tran,Joseph Kertes,Kao Kalia Yang,Dina Nayeri,Maaza Mengiste,Reyna Grande,Novuyo Rosa Tshuma,Lev Golinkin,Joseph Azam,Thi Bui,Meron Hader
Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House - Michael Wolff
A Room of One's Own - Virginia Woolf
Giovanni's Room - James Baldwin
Fahrenheit 451 - Ray Bradbury
The Declaration of Independence and The Constitution of the United States - Thomas Jefferson,James Madison

You'd have to be living under a rock buried somewhere halfway down to the center of the earth in order not to be aware that in recent years our beautiful world has been shaken up by a number of crises the likes of which I, at least, have not experienced in my entire lifetime -- I can't remember any other time when I have so consistently felt the urge to put on blinders and wrap myself in a giant comfort blanket approximately 10 seconds after opening a newspaper (or its online edition), or 10 seconds into listening to the news.  Obviously playing ostrich has never done anybody any good, but God knows, it's getting hard not to succumb to the temptation. 

 

So what does a book lover do in order to keep her sanity, equip herself to separate fact from fiction (in news reporting, politics, and plenty of other places) and deal with rat catchers and fire mongers?  She turns to books, of course.

 

I've decided to build a "Freedom and Future" personal library, which will contain books which (1) have either deeply impacted my personal thinking or that I expect will come to do so in the futures, or which (2) provide valuable food for thought in today's social and political debate, both nationally and internationally; be it based on a profound analysis of the issues at stake (as a matter of principle or long term), or because even though they may not be of lasting significance, they contain a thought-provoking contribution to the current debate (even if they were not written with that express purpose in mind -- e.g., books about historic persons or events or books by long-dead authors).  I'm not expecting to binge-read the books added to this library, but I'm looking to add them to the mix with a bit more focus than I've been doing of late.

 

In the past couple of days, I've trawled my own bookshelves for books to add to the library, but this is one area where, even more than anywhere else, I'm looking for suggestions -- I can already see that I'm at risk of falling back on my old standbys, and that's the last thing I want to do here.

 

So, tell me: What books have recently made you sit up -- or which are the books that you've come to turn to and trust for guidance and inspiration?

 

These can be fiction or nonfiction, and books from any or all types of genres (I only draw the line at splatter punk).  As the first part of my new library's title indicates, liberty and freedom rights are a focus, but I'm really looking for food for thought on all the issues that I think are going to determine the path human society will be taking (hence the "future" part); including, in no particular order:

 

* Liberty and freedom(s) (of opinion and press, movement, association, worship, the arts, etc.),

* Equal access to justice and judicial independence and impartiality,

* Equality and empowerment (gender / sexuality, race, etc.), and the plurality of society;

* Poverty / the increasing gap in the distribution of wealth,

* Education (general, political, etc.);

* Funding and freedom of research and science,

* Protection of the environment,

* Democratic institutions and processes and how to safeguard them,

* Xenophobia, war(mongering) and the preservation / restoration of peace,

* Persecution, migration, and internal displacement,

* Free trade and globalization,

* Technological advances,

* Ethics -- in all of the above areas.

 

I'm adding a few books to this post to give you a rough idea of what sort of things I've so far added to this library -- please take them as very approximate guidance only, though.  It can be something totally different ... really anything that's jogged your brain or made you reevaluate your perspective on any of the above issues.

 

Thanks in advance!

 

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text 2018-03-26 17:21
Spending My Hard Earned Credits
Wednesday the Rabbi Got Wet: A Rabbi Small Mystery, Book 6 - Harry Kemelman,George Guidall
In This Bright Future: DC Smith Investigation Series, Book 5 - Gildart Jackson,Peter Grainger

I have been a member of Audible for so long now that I have quite a library built up for re-reading, which is how I spend two-thirds of my reading hours, such that between the daily deals and two-fer sales, spending a whole credit on just one book is reserved for special occasions, like adding the titles of authors that I really, really enjoy reading and want to have more of. Kemelman and Grainger are two of those authors.

 

 

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review 2018-03-05 14:11
Elon Musk: Inventing the Future - Ashlee Vance

Elon Musk, a man who has crazy work ethics and always striving for his goals no matter what the risks are or what consequences it will have on him or his family . He has gained a title of the Paypal Mafia and is also one of Silicon Valleys most respected entrepreneurs .

   Personally reading this book has increased my respect towards all entrepreneurs famous or yet to be . This book really details out greatly on how Elon Musk started his journey towards success  from Zip2 to X.com and soon Space X and Tesla , impacting me almost immediately as I slowly started to think out of the box just like how Elon did when having such startups . With his crazy work ethics he have made me strongly have faith that whatever sufferings I have now will ultimately lead to a long time success just as how he categorized each investment he makes , long term or short term . Besides I am also flabbergasted by all his ideas that he have come up with , some of them people just could not even knew that they would have needed it until he invented it just like how he did with the electric car . Taking huge risks were also always in his agendas as he was almost bankrupt once and his only option was success as if he failed this he would have nothing left for himself .  Besides one of his most honorable traits were that he was extremely great at coping with massive amounts of stress and pressure as he had crazy work ethics and this blows me away .All in all ,nothing could literally stand in his ways to block him form achieving his goals and that was what inspired and blows me away.He was just a man with a plan no matter what the circumstances were.

   Reading these book which has accounts from previous employees from space X and Tesla I could also tell that although most people see the bright side of Musk , there was this dark side of him that not many could have known as it was usually not published that frequently . He was a man that was also known to have worked all his workers to the bone , such as making them work almost the 22 hours a day or even till the extent of not being able to go back home to meet their families . This was especially saddening though workers who usually just express themselves because of such things were thrown out of the company like garbage although they have done so much for the company . Sometimes to if an employee have an idea that was going against Elon's initial idea they too might get fired just in a matter of seconds. 

   In conclusion I really enjoyed reading these book as it has great insights on one of the leading technological company that may soon takeover the world . It has also opened my eyes to see some bad politics and disputes in such big company that has changed my perspective of such companies . Other than that I would also like to recommend this book to any aspiring young entrepreneurs out there so you will have a greater understanding of what it is like to run such businesses so you will not buckle under immense pressure as Elon is also well known for making fast and effective decisions although he was under great pressure . 

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review 2018-02-27 00:09
Corduroy - Don Freeman

Corduroy is a curious bear seeking his missing button. He goes through the mall trying to find one. He causes a ruckus and is taking back to where he belongs. Only, he belongs to the little girl who has a home and friendship waiting for him. I would use this book possibly as a counting activity with buttons or maybe create adventures for Corduroy and see if the author came up with any of the same stories.

 

level: k

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