What are you reading?

Just the usual list this week.  Suggestions for topics are welcome.

If you like to trade books, try BookMooch.

What are you reading?  is crossposted to daily Kos

Just finished:

Thief of Time by Terry Pratchett.  Yet more Discworld fun.  I didn’t like this one so much.  I tend to like the ones with a lot of fantasy less than the others, and this one has a lot of fantasy elements

the Difference Engine by Doron Swade.  Back in 1821 Charles Babbage invented and designed a computer.  But it never got built.  This book tells the story, and also the story of the author’s attempt to build that machine in the present day.  I found the parts about Babbage much more interesting than the parts about Swade.

Continuing with

Causality by Judea Pearl.  Fascinating but deep.

Intro to Probability Theory by Hoel, Port, and Stone.  A good text.

The Elements of Statistical Learning by Trevor Hastie and Robert Tibshirani.  An in-depth look at a wide range of statistical techniques.  Beautifully produced.

The Politics of Congressional Elections by Gary Jacobson

Just started

Moving Pictures by Terry Pratchett.  I had mostly forgotten this one, and it’s really good!  


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    • plf515 on November 23, 2007 at 2:02 pm

    I didn’t mean for that to go to the front page….

    If someone can tell me how to move it to the side, just let me know.

    Meanwhile, tell us what you’re reading

  1. After Dark by Haruki Murakami and The Buddha in Your Mirror by Hochswender, Martin and Morino.

    For amusement reading I finished the latest Kay Scarpetta novel and it was a decent installment.

    I always thought I was a pretty decent reader but your lists always humble me…:)

    PS yeah, keep this on the FP. I always get cool reading ideas from the other commenter’s.

  2. Too much turkey, too much too much.  Too much wine and dessert.  Too much cleaning up.  And so my usual reading material is too hard for today.  So for a breather, which cannot be recommended too much, Raymond Chandler, “Farewell, My Lovely.”

    It is amazing that this has held up so beautifully for 70+ years.  Yes, there are parts that use racist language.  But otherwise, it still works.  Dare I say that the Philip Marlowe books are a major part of the detective story canon?

    BTW, this feature should be on the FP.  And I’m happy to find it here, so I don’t have to travel over there.


  3. a mystery The Art Thief by Noah Charney. I picked it because I do enjoy artworld themed fiction. Good bits of art history. The author is in love with the art of repartee as well. Quick read.

    Also grabbed Song Without Words: The Photographs and Diaries of Countess Sophia Tolstoy and The Beats: From Kerouac to Kesey, an Illustrated Journey through the Beat Generation. I’ve only browsed the extensive photos so far…but they are 3 week books! Our library gives you 1 week for new fiction and 3 weeks for non-fiction. Oh joy…

  4. * Labor Union Leaders and Writers – biographies, autobiographies, non-fiction

    * Open Source Geek Speak – e-texts, interviews, articles

    * Local Writers – everyone shares their favorite locals

    • pico on November 23, 2007 at 6:31 pm

    I’m so far behind on dissertation work that I really shouldn’t be doing anything else.  (yeah, right)  I just finished Stanislaw Lem’s His Master’s Voice, which Carl Sagan ripped off when writing Contact, although Lem’s is about 50x deeper than Sagan’s.  I mean no disrespect to Sagan, who will always be a hero of mine, but he didn’t wrap his brain around the issues of interstellar ‘contact’ nearly as thoroughly as Lem did.  I wouldn’t call it an ‘entertaining’ novel per se – there’s hardly a plot to speak of – but Lem is one of those authors who rewards readers by forcing them to view the universe in a different way.  So I’d recommend it, but with reservations.

    I want to start Pynchon’s Against the Day, but I know I won’t have time to finish it right now, and that just depresses me.

    • oculus on November 24, 2007 at 6:38 am

    on twins, insomnia, and the biggest funeral in the history of the world, by Anthony Doerr.

    Then I’m digging into four, count ’em, four books by H.V. Morton on Rome.  

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