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Goner Message Board / ???? / i'd like a new book
Posted: Nov 21, 2005 2:06 am
has anybody read anything really interesting lately? i haven't heard of much and the last two i tried didn't cut it. i usually enjoy reading non-fiction, on the subject of just about anything? any suggestions?

has anyone read 'the bell curve'? is it an interesting read or just a bunch of figures and charts for 900 pages?
Posted: Nov 21, 2005 2:50 am
Some interesting non-fiction I've gotten into off and on lately is the Broadway books "Library of Larceny". Just finished "Con Man" about Yellow Kid Weil, also they have a biography of Ponzi (for whom the Ponzi scheme is named) which was pretty interesting. Also highly reccommended along these lines is "The Big Con" by David Mauer. If you've seen The Sting, it's where the whole idea of the movie came from basically. Cool shit.
Posted: Nov 21, 2005 2:58 am
Also, tho' I haven't read it yet, a friend just highly reccommended "Crossing the Rubicon" by Michael C. Ruppert. It's about peak oil and basically how fucked the world and esp. US economy will be when we run out of petroleum. The author was a talking head on a documentary I watched recently and he sounded pretty interesting so's I wanna check it out...
Posted: Nov 21, 2005 3:26 am
ponzi. isn't he that fag on happy days?
Posted: Nov 21, 2005 3:43 am
16 just got The Devil In The White City (erik Larson- nonfiction about the Chicago World's Fair) after two of my friends recommended it. One of these friends says it has the story about the guy who wrote the melody for "There's a place in France where the naked ladies dance." but I'm pretty sure ther'es alot of crazy shady shit in there too. I hafta finish Wall Of Pain before I get my shot at it. I have this one called Censored Hollywood that I never finished but it was still pretty interseting.

How about Confessions of a Rat Fink: The Life and Times of Ed "Big Daddy" Roth? Theres lots of great pics in there.

Also somebody recently flowed me a copy of Alien Rock: The Rock'nroll Extraterrestrial Connection. Seems kooky and paranoid.
Posted: Nov 21, 2005 3:51 am
1776 by david mccullough was an interesting read. the benjamin franklin biography by walter isaacson was pretty good too. i liked 1776 better but i'd definitely recommend devil in the white city above either of them.
Posted: Nov 21, 2005 3:52 am
seems kooky and gay.
Posted: Nov 21, 2005 3:58 am
Yeah it does seem kooky and gay. There's a Michael Jackson chapter in it. They talk about his "moonwalks."
Posted: Nov 21, 2005 6:25 am
cool, thanks for the suggestions. schooley...if i remember a previous thread you are quite the noir fan and seem to read similar subjects so i will definitely check those out...
i remember seeing that 'devin in the white city' and thought it looked pretty interesting.
over the summer i read some great books...had to cram before school started. 'confessions of a jewel theif' , 'acid dreams' and 'you can't win' being the highlights.
Posted: Nov 21, 2005 6:50 am
I haven't finished it yet, but I am reading "You Can't Win" by Jack Black. Autobiography of a runaway/train hopper/bum/petty criminal at the turn of the century. Riding around on trains, ripping people off...pretty good shit.
Posted: Nov 21, 2005 1:09 pm
pretty gay shit.
Posted: Nov 21, 2005 3:22 pm
I've been reading "Catch 22" and this book on human behavior "Games People Play".

Both are good.
Posted: Nov 21, 2005 3:40 pm
both are gay.
Posted: Nov 21, 2005 6:21 pm
This one is for you, Lisa!

I just finished "The Road To Wellville" which was actually pretty good.
Posted: Nov 21, 2005 6:52 pm
i am reading "Gay: jokes I stole from my 12 year old Brother"
by: Dirkis Diggler
Posted: Nov 21, 2005 7:01 pm | Edited by: bok choy
I just started "Stiff" by Mary Roach, it's about the history of human cadavers. It is pretty funny (sometimes a bit show-offy clever, but generally amusing) and definitely informative. Necrophilia laws in Nevada vs. necrophilia laws in Wisconsin, where your organ donations go (skin goes to cosmetic surgery), graverobbers, etc.
Posted: Nov 21, 2005 7:53 pm
karen, i have this great book called "things for the surgeon" by hubert cole. it's a history of british body snatchers in the mid-1880s. get your own copy. i ain't lending this one out.

i've been reading "a cold six thousand" by ellroy. a part II of "american tabloid". it's "pretty" good but ellroy's use of truncated sentences and sentence fragments gets REALLY annoying REAL fast.
Posted: Nov 21, 2005 7:58 pm
1776 by david mccullough was an interesting read.

i agree. definitely interesting if you are into the military aspects of the revolutionary war.

I just finished "The Road To Wellville" which was actually pretty good.
i've always wanted to read it because i liked the movie a lot. i like reading about all the old kookie apothecary/medicinal practices of that time frame. hilarious that people thought what would cure ailments back then.

right now, i am in the process of reading "sellevision" by augusten burroughs, "love is a dog from hell" (some poems by bukowski), "the paris pilgrims" (it's a fictional account of hemingway in paris), "a french tragedy" by tzvetan todorov (for a class), and "1816 america rising" (for another class).

i wouldn't recommend the latter two unless you are really into those periods of history. i'm kind of suspended in the middle of the other three books due to having an overabundance of schoolwork.
Posted: Nov 21, 2005 8:03 pm
i agree. definitely interesting if you are into the military aspects of the revolutionary war.

apart from the military aspects i thought it was a very informed account of the political landscape at the time. the actions that brought about the armed conflict, the reasons behind them and how they could've been avoided were all more interesting to me than the accounts of the battles.

after reading that book it's amazing this country ever came to be in the first place.
Posted: Nov 21, 2005 8:05 pm
"the bell curve" is interesting, but it's heavily reliant upon statistics to prove its point. and that's wherein the problems lies. you can pretty much make statistics say anything you want. the assertions it makes would make white supremacists smile, even though the authors clearly are not trying to endorse racism. they are just implying that different ethinicities have higher intelligence and class has a lot to do with it as well.

there is another book along the same vein - Freakonomics. it is heavily reliant upon statistics as well. it is an interesting read, but best when taken with a grain of salt.

also i recommend: globalization and its discontents by joseph stiglitz if you're into liberal economic theory. pass on a brief history of the 21st century by thomas friedman as it reads like "globalization for dummies" should.
Posted: Nov 21, 2005 8:07 pm
Oh yeah, she mentioned that book (Things for the Surgeon)! She included some excerpts from the graverobbers' diaries--they would refer to the bodies as "things" that they would steal when they "intoxsicated." Awesome.
Posted: Nov 21, 2005 8:08 pm
after reading that book it's amazing this country ever came to be in the first place.

i agree. between that and this class i've been taking on early american history from 1783 to 1815 sincerely makes me wonder how they got anything done. so much disagreement on what to do and how to go about doing it. so much interference from france and england both. crazy.
Posted: Nov 21, 2005 8:14 pm
Elle, It was very entertaining and I wouldn't have beleived that most of it is true, all the weird 'cures', etc. I've never seen the movie, but now I want to.
Posted: Nov 21, 2005 8:25 pm
"Confessions of an Economic Hit Man" is pretty interesting. It's a non-fiction account of this guy who essentially worked for the US Gov. (via a Haliburton-esque 'financial firm'). His job was to inflate economic forecasts of developing nations, use those bogus reports to secure astronomical loans from the World Bank, and then use their giant debt against them.

"Oh, hey little third-world country... Can't pay your bill this month? I guess we'll just put an American military base on your soil. And take all of you natural resources."

Pretty insane.
Posted: Nov 21, 2005 8:27 pm
"Confessions of an Economic Hit Man"

i'm going to have to check that out. sounds really really interesting.
Posted: Nov 21, 2005 8:32 pm
Yeah- it's fucked. And it's all true.
Posted: Nov 21, 2005 8:47 pm
right now, i am in the process of reading "sellevision" by augusten burroughs, "love is a dog from hell" (some poems by bukowski),

Both of these are highly entertaining. I read Sellevision on an airplane, and I laughed my ass off, which was probably annoying to everyone else... "Women" is my favorite Bukowski, I think.

16 just got The Devil In The White City

I have to read this book. Post us what ya think about it.
Posted: Nov 21, 2005 9:00 pm
Hi Lula, I'm gonna start "Devil in the White City" this weekend. I'll definately post a review when i'm done with it. I'm pretty excited to read it!
Posted: Nov 21, 2005 9:04 pm
i thought it was an amazing book. thoroughly documented, both stories were captivating in their own rights. but i pretty much had a boner for the columbian exposition even before this book came out, i've got this coffee table book with all these pictures of the white city that fascinated me. plus i was already familiar with burnham and root and their influence on this city so i had some incentive beyond this particular story to read this book. but even without any outside influences, it was a great read.
Posted: Nov 21, 2005 9:15 pm
I enjoyed that book, but I wanted more of the murder and less of the boring architecture stuff.
Posted: Nov 21, 2005 9:18 pm
and less of the boring architecture stuff.

man i would've loved all the boring architecture stuff. i've got a weird thing for feats of engineering.
Posted: Nov 21, 2005 9:31 pm
1/2 way agree with norah. i think there are more details as far as public record goes on the exposistion than there is of holmes' murders, so they had to throe that in to make the book 'bigger'(?)....kevin's got a boner!
Posted: Nov 21, 2005 9:38 pm
i agree that there wasn't enough on the holmes case to justify it's own novel but what's in there is really interesting. it's just that i love architecture and i was blown away with what they were able to accomplish in a relatively short period of time. i dig when something seemingly impossible gets done.
Posted: Nov 21, 2005 9:44 pm
zzz...oh i'm sorry i must have dozed off. did anything gay happen?
Posted: Nov 22, 2005 2:12 am
I'll definately post a review when i'm done with it. I'm pretty excited to read it!

Cool, thanks!
Posted: Nov 22, 2005 2:15 am
-"did anything gay happen?"

it just did....
Posted: Nov 22, 2005 3:02 am
I loved Devil in the White City, but I liked the parts covering the World's Fair (more boring architectural details, please!) way more than parts about the murders. It was luridly fascinating, sure, and the guy is a great writer, but I am SO over serial killers by now. Like, so 90's, ya know? Even James Ellroy has moved on.

Good book, tho'.
Posted: Nov 22, 2005 6:22 am
"Women" is my favorite Bukowski, I think.

I have to concur. Although I am a new convert to the cult of Bukowski, and haven't tracked everything down yet, I still don't think anything will really top this. Speaking of Bukowski, most any bio on him is worth the read....
Posted: Nov 22, 2005 6:37 am
Speaking of Bukowski, most any bio on him is worth the read....
he was mostly slightly veiled auto bio in his "fiction" - my fave is "Post Office" and then in one book he turned me on the Fante.
Posted: Nov 22, 2005 3:00 pm
Ham on Rye by Bukowski is a really good read about his life growing up as a kid. Has one of his high school yearbook photos on the front cover.
Posted: Nov 22, 2005 3:05 pm
i get all my "books" from here. http://www.magmayhem.com
Posted: Nov 22, 2005 3:08 pm
Ham on Rye by Bukowski

I've been wanting to read this forever. I need to just break down and pay full price for it.
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