Now that libraries have reopened...

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 Sean Kelly 27 Apr 2021

Now that libraries have reopened...what are you reading?

I have six books on the go at the moment, and another two reserved. But the standout one is this superb history of the Royal Navy, written by an American, Arthur Herman... To Rule the Waves.

"An epic history of the Royal Navy, from the Spanish Armada to the present, that tells the story of how it dominated the world and laid the foundation for the modern age."

At 648 pages it is not a short read but I keep turning the pages. The part of the Royal Navy and their campaign to end slavery was an unknown story to me, and all the more facinating for that.

Another book that I can heartily recommend, one I read immediately before lockdown is The House of Borgia by Christopher Hibbert. What a family history, that has just about everything from wars, finance, religion, incest, corruption, nepotism, and greed, but also a facininating history of the Medieval Italian States. Another riveting read.

In reply to Sean Kelly:

I'm supposed to be in UKC exile and this is a far stretch from the heavy-duty reading you're doing, however, I'm reading Equal Rites by Terry Pratchett.

These earlier stories may not share the elaborate orchestrations of his later books but they make up for that with a simplicity and wit that makes you laugh and think in equal measure!!


In reply to Phantom Disliker:

Cracking book. I’ve been re-reading a load of his earlier books over the last year or so and thoroughly enjoying myself. It’s been so long since I’ve read some of them that it’s like reading them for the first time again which is even better.

In reply to the OP, at the moment I’m reading The Three Body Problem by Liu Cixin. Sci-fi with a lot of interesting insights into Chinese modern history (interesting to me anyway, as someone otherwise pretty ignorant). Some cool ideas in it and an engaging read, although I’m finding that the characters feel a little flat and I’m struggling to connect with any of them. 

In reply to Sean Kelly:

The Interestings by Meg Wolitzer 

 wercat 28 Apr 2021
In reply to Sean Kelly:

taking a relaxing break from fiction with a re-read of Joan Solomon "The Nature of Matter"

iirc I originally got this in a sell-off of library books

Post edited at 10:03
 Boomer Doomer 28 Apr 2021
In reply to Sean Kelly:

"Oblomov" by Ivan Goncharov... Russian literature is the best (IMO)!

I also always have a philosophy book on the go, which at the moment is "Discourse on Metaphysics" by Leibnitz. There are two other books I dip into from time to time... History of Western Philosophy by Russell, which I use as a reference for my other philosophic reading and "Beelzebub’s Tales to His Grandson" by Gurdjieff, when I fancy something more esoteric.

 Boomer Doomer 28 Apr 2021
In reply to Sean Kelly:

I have a series of books (which I inherited with some bookshelves) on great women in history. One is on Lucretia Borgia... I haven't read it yet, but you make it sound intriguing! If you like that sort of thing you may enjoy "The Prince" by Niccolo Machiavelli.

In reply to Sean Kelly:

Slightly off topic...

My mrs has an app from our library that lends audio books. So no more of that old skool analogue reading nonsense, just download and go. It really is like a library, in that you cant just download any audio book from their catalogue, there are only so many 'copies' available. But other than that, its exciting to see new technology being rolled out to what could be seen as a stuck in the mud service.

In answer to the Q. Some of the Northern Lights (audio) books, by Philip Pullman

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