What are you reading?

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One of the things I look forward to most about the holidays is the chance to do some reading. Of course, socializing with friends and family is my top priority. But at night (when I don’t have to worry about waking up early) or in the airport (where, as in the subway, engrossing material is key) or even during random lulls in the middle of the day, it’s so nice to sneak off with a book, or a stack of old New Yorkers!

I’m in between books right now, and for the past few weeks have been sticking to periodicals. But I’m ready to sink my teeth into something long again. The last book I read for pleasure was The Sportswriter, and for work was the memoir of British computer pioneer Maurice Wilkes. Though I usually get books for Christmas, this year, like many people, I got a Kindle instead. So my slate is blank.

What are you reading these days? Got any recommendations?

16 thoughts on “What are you reading?

  1. Right now I’m working thru The Federalist Papers and Washington: A Life by Ron Chernow. I’ve been on a Founding Fathers kick for the last several years, since reading Chernow’s excellent biography of Alexander Hamilton.

  2. Right now I have about six James Patterson books to catch up on, a John Grisham and about four books that I need to review…I have a lot of reading to do in the next few months! Guess I will meet my goal for 52 books in 2011!

    • Speedmaster, I’ve become addicted to your blog. I even cited it a few weeks ago in a stunning 10 page British Literature paper that I 100’d.

      In any case, I found it amusing you’re reading Stalingrad. As I said up there previously, I am now working my way through Tyranny on Trial, but I’ve had my eye on “Stalingrad” by Antony Beevor – particularly the Folio Society edition (http://www.foliosociety.com/book/STG/stalingrad). I just took some of my grant money for school and picked up a boat load of German history, mostly pre-WWII and the build up, from as far back as the Thirty Years Wars (Partial list of the ones ordered on Google Books: http://bit.ly/e2UMow and http://bit.ly/g9TjWL).

      Finally, “The Road to Serfdom”, which you mentioned in your list. I have it in my wish list and will order it monday with the wife’s textbooks, as well. That would seem to be an engrossing and incredible read.

      Thanks to you for your blog.

      Happy New Year.

  3. What I’m reading probably isn’t for everyone. However, for students of Orthodox liturgical theology, I highly recommend “The Shape of the Liturgy” by Dom Gregory Dix, a classic in the field. Another one I’m reading is “Orthodox Dogmatic Theology” by Fr. Michael Pomazansky.

    Like I said, not for everyone. But hey, since you asked…

  4. I read the Bible daily. I am currently reading an interesting book called the Promise Land by Jay Parini. The author takes thirteen books that changed America. He summarizes thirteen books that influenced the cultural of America.

  5. What fun to see what everyone’s reading! Amusing, too, that the Mark Twain autobiography came up; my dad received a copy from a friend of his, and it is indeed enormous. I’m a bit anxious about buying books on Kindle, because if I know that if I love them I will want to own them in paper. But something like the Mark Twain, which is so unwieldy as a physical object, might be the perfect thing to try…

  6. I am currently reading the new Mark Twain autobiography and I have found it very interesting. As Sheila pointed out, it is prohibitively large so I cannot carry it around so, my carry around book is the Ultimate Hitchhiker’s Guide (the 5 hitchhiker’s guide to the galaxy books)

  7. Like Michelle, I normally gorge myself on several books at once (although some of these are collections of short stories, which make for great piecemeal reading).

    I can heartily recommend the following tomes, all of which currently grace my night stand:

    The Book of Negroes, by Lawrence Hill

    The Complete Short Stories of Ernest Hemingway: The Finca Vigia Edition

    Flappers and Philosophers, by F. Scott Fitzgerald

  8. I’m just starting John Powell’s “How Music Works: The Science and Psychology of Beautiful Sounds, from Beethoven to the Beatles and Beyond.” I could have read this on my Kindle, but the hardcover book comes with a CD and I wanted the full experience!

  9. Trying to make my way through “Tyranny on trial: the trial of the major German war criminals at the end of World War II at Nuremberg, Germany, 1945-1946” – W. Harris, and it’s a doozy. You can’t just read this book. I average 20 pages at a sitting and it takes a while to digest what you’re reading.

  10. We have just started the new Mark Twain biography. Volume I, just published, contains the notes and “outtakes” from the finished version, coming up in volumes yet to be released. His personality leaps from each page; it is so obvious who wrote it, and fascinating to read even in its unpolished state. (Maybe, also, because of it.)

    Interesting you mention the Kindle; I bought the physical book, thinking my husband would prefer that, but I believe that the Kindle version actually has more info – more footnotes, for example. The physical book is 720 or so pages, and apparently it would be prohibitively large (it already approaches that now!) had they included all the references in it. I may have to buy the Kindle version as a companion piece!

  11. I’m usually reading two or three books at a time. (I also read Studs Terkel regularly; as a writer,it’s like taking an aspirin). The current list is:
    1. “Vanishing Scents from Around the World,” by Dr. Roman Kaiser
    2. “Cheese,” by Andrew Dalby
    3. “Simple Cooking,” by John Thorne

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