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Swarm Book Club

Discussion in 'The Swarm Lounge' started by Milwaukee, Mar 23, 2019.

  1. Milwaukee

    Milwaukee Helluva Engineer

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    I figure since we're all nerds anyway we may as well act like it. I just finished Bad Blood tonight and plan on starting Sex Money Murder, by Jonathan Green, tomorrow.

    Any book recommendations or negative reviews as well would be nice. I finished Billion Dollar Whale last month and thought it was crazy good. True story, he was known as the Malaysian Wolf of Wall Street. Very good book.

    The Bad Blood story just came out on HBO as a documentary titled The Inventor. It's on the dvr so now I can finally watch it now that I'm finished with the book.
     
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  2. MWBATL

    MWBATL Helluva Engineer

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    Personally, I'm a sci fi guy almost exclusively. I think it must mean I cannot deal with reality anymore.
     
  3. Jim Prather

    Jim Prather Helluva Engineer

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    I will shout this from the rooftops... Anathem by Neal Stephenson is one of the greatest Sci-Fi/Fantasy books ever written... It ranks right up there with The Lord of the Rings, but it is a HARD book to read.
    For those people willing to stick with it though, the payoff at the end is amazing. I think I have read it 5-6 times now and I get something new out of it every time.
     
  4. Wrecked

    Wrecked Helluva Engineer

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    I know some can't stand John Feinstein and Ill admit I find him an arrogant ***, however his books are good. I just read "The Legends Club" and while its focused on Valvano, Coach Kurrupt and Dean Smith, the chapters on the 80's ACC were really good, especially for someone like me who loved college BB in that time frame. Lots of mentions and quotes from Cremins as well. Like all his books, its a quick read. Get it from the library if you don't want to pad Feinstein's bank account.
     
  5. Milwaukee

    Milwaukee Helluva Engineer

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    I'll definitely check out Legends Club. Thank you sir.
     
  6. trombone4Christ

    trombone4Christ Ramblin' Wreck

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    I'm a huge Sanderson fan. The fantasy series called the Stormlight Archive is really enjoyable. The books are quite a commitment with each being over a 1000 pages, however it doesn't seem to bog down in superfluous prose. My kids (17 and 14) both enjoyed it too. We are all waiting for book 4 in the series. Lots of action and plot twists with great character development. Sanderson is quite renown for his world building and this one doesn't disappoint.

    Sent from my SM-G930U using Tapatalk
     
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  7. TooTall

    TooTall Helluva Engineer

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    Anything by Pat Conroy, but his best work is Beach Music.
     
  8. TampaBuzz

    TampaBuzz Helluva Engineer

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    Beach Music is a terrific book.....I also recommend South of Broad by same author. I went back and read The Great Santini recently; it was not as good as I had remembered.
     
  9. TampaBuzz

    TampaBuzz Helluva Engineer

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    If you haven't read any of them....I also recommend the Lee Child series of book featuring Jack Reacher. Outstanding stuff.
     
  10. TampaBuzz

    TampaBuzz Helluva Engineer

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    I thoroughly enjoyed "The Last Amateurs" by John Feinstein.
     
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  11. MWBATL

    MWBATL Helluva Engineer

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    I am going to give it a go...thanks for the recommendation. My own faves are the classic stuff (Foundation and Robot series by Asimov, LOTR) and more recently the Expanse series by James S. A. Corey. I have also enjoyed the Origin Mystery series by A. G. Riddle, the Murderbot series by Martha Wells, and a few of the sci-fi writings of E. R. Mason.
     
  12. Whiskey_Clear

    Whiskey_Clear Banned

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    Too much out there to recommend.

    Grew up with Louis L’amour and love his stuff even if many of his books have similar themes.

    Fantasy: JRR Tolkien. All the rest just try and fail to match him. But some are still good regardless.

    WEB Griffin for WWII stories. Not dissimilar from L’amour but different genre.

    Civil War. The Killer Angels.

    Mystery. Dick Francis had some good books but I started losing interest after awhile.

    Non fiction. On Killing by Lt. Colonel Dave Grossman, Black Hawk Down by Mark Bowden....several Rangers later wrote their own accounts which was a great read also...The Battle of Mogadishu, Hannibal by Theodore Ayrault Dodge, Clean Old Fashioned Hate of course by Cromartie.
     
  13. Tech93

    Tech93 Helluva Engineer

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    I read a bunch of history...great overview on Civil War is Battlecry of Freedom by Janes McPherson...bunch of other good ones too if anyone needs history recommendations
     
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  14. Tech93

    Tech93 Helluva Engineer

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    Also, Killers of the Flower Moon: The Osage Murders and the Birth of the FBI and The Devil in the White City: Murder, Magic, and Madness at the Fair that Changed America
     
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  15. GTpdm

    GTpdm Helluva Engineer

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    Uhh-ohh...you got me started on books. Everybody back up!

    I’ve seen several good referrals here on fiction. On the non-fiction side, these are some of my favorites:

    Ian W. Toll’s Six Frigates, a fantastic (nay, epic —it’s even in the subtitle) history of the founding of the US Navy, spanning most of the ninteeth century. The Age of Sail at its best. Every few chapters you feel the need to shower—to wash the salt spray out of your hair, the tar off your hands, and the black powder residue off your face. This is a book that I could read multiple times. Problem is, everyone in my extended family is passing it around, so it will be a long time before it comes back into my hands. No kidding: I will probably buy another copy.

    Anything by Mary Roach, an entertaining and funny “science” writer who approaches her chosen topics from the everyday-person-on-the-street perspective. Her titles almost speak for themselves:
    • Stiff: The Curious Lives of Human Cadavers
    • Spook: Science Tackles the Afterlife
    • Packing for Mars: The Curious Science of Life in the Void
    • Gulp: Adventures on the Alimentary Canal
    • ...and more!
    Another entertaining “popular science” writer is Sam Kean, who has a number of good titles under his belt. My favorite was The Disappearing Spoon, an exploration of history as explained by the periodic table of the elements. (Yes, you read that right.)

    Edmund Morris’s Theodore Roosevelt trilogy: The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt, Theodore Rex, and Colonel Roosevelt. The series is a major reading investment, but you really learn a lot about turn-of-the-century America. I am not much of a biography reader, but I’m glad I took the time to slog through with this one. It’s actually pretty readable, if loooong.

    David Halberstam, The Coldest Winter. An account of the events leading up to the Korean War, and the first year or so of the war (before stalemate set in). Focuses on the geopolitical aspects, rather than the military side. (If you want a military history of early Korean War, try Clay Bair’s The Forgotten War. Very good read for the military history buff.) Not sure I agree with all of Halberstam’s conclusions (to be expected whenever politics are part of the narrative), but I came out of it with a better understanding of a mostly forgotten aspect of our history—one that actually had a lot of impact on us as a nation.

    Theodor Giesel’s Horton Hears A Who. Okay, at this point I am just checking to see if anyone is still reading this...;)
     
  16. Tech93

    Tech93 Helluva Engineer

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    I have read most of Conroy's books and one of his best is My Losing Season, which was nonfiction based on his senior year at the Citadel.
     
  17. Milwaukee

    Milwaukee Helluva Engineer

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    Has anyone read Sapiens?
     
  18. CuseJacket

    CuseJacket Administrator Staff Member

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    Speaking of nerdy, I've kept a log of the books I've read since 2012 with my own 1-5 scoring. Looks like I remembered to record 68 books in that time.

    It's probably 85% non-fiction, which seems to be your preference. Are there specific topics you like?
    Sapiens is on my list but haven't gotten there yet.

    I am currently reading Dreamland which is a pretty damn interesting book on how the opioid crisis came to be, backtracking and tying everything from Mexican towns, interviews with individual dealers who detail their reasons for getting into it, their marketing strategy and operations, pharma, faulty scientific research and conclusions, etc.
     
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  19. CuseJacket

    CuseJacket Administrator Staff Member

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    I'll just rattle some stuff off my "5" scores that I would read again...

    • Dead Wake: The Last Crossing of the Lusitania... same author as Devil in the White City which was mentioned by @Tech93
    • Unbroken... ignore the Angelina Jolie trash movie... book is legit
    • Salt, Sugar, Fat: How the Food Giants Hooked Us
    • Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in the End
    • I am Malala
    • The Wright Brothers
    • A Long Way Home
    • One Second After... fiction... it'll freak you out
    • The Stranger in the Woods
    • The Sun Does Shine: How I Found Life and Freedom on Death Row
    • Thomas Jefferson and the Tripoli Pirates: The Forgotten War That Changed American History

    Several of those were on bestseller lists for stretches of time.
     
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  20. slugboy

    slugboy Moderator Staff Member

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    3,468
    If you like the Expanse books, you’d probably also like books by Alastair Reynolds (hard space Sci Fi) and maybe Becky Chambers (the long way to a small angry planet), and John Scalzi (lots), and Sea of Rust by Robert Cargill (one of the best Sci Fi books I’ve read in years).

    In movies, the more recent Planet of the Apes prequels have been sneaky good, but unseen by most folk. Woody Harrelson was really good in the last one.

    The Martian was great, but I haven’t read the follow up yet.


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