Thursday, January 11, 2018

Switching to Good Reads

I haven't posted here for a while as I've been using Good Reads. So I'd might as well make it official: that's where I'll be logging all future book entries. My user id there is csktx should anyone wish to follow me.

Also, while I felt compelled to write a few words about every book I entered in this blog, in the Good Reads log I tend to comment only on fantastic or horrible books.

Check out

Sunday, July 9, 2017

Sh*t My Dad Says, by Justin Halpern

Mr. Halpern's dad is a foul mouthed, insensitive, and hilarious father. This collection of really horrible things he said to young Mr. Halpern made me occasionally laugh out loud, and feel better about my own parenting.

Growing Up Amish: A Memoir, by Ira Wagler

This was an interesting memoir of Mr. Wagler's troubled childhood, a rebellious young man who was never quite comfortable with the structure of his Amish community, and never quite comfortable outside of it. Unfortunately, the memoir misses a punchline: how did it end up, what's he doing now, etc. That defect, in my view, makes it not worth reading the book at all.

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Ring of Fire, by Brad Taylor

Here's the sequence: I'm at the library, I see a novel that looks like fun (action / thriller), so I borrow it. As I start reading, I recognize the characters and the writing and realize that I don't like these books. But, in for a penny, in for a pound, I keep reading.

And now you understand why I read Mr. Taylor's latest book even though I'm not a fan of his main character, Pike Logan, nor of how close the plot gets to a deus ex machina problem solving approach.

Sigh. I skimmed through many pages of this book; it wasn't as fun as I'd hoped.

Shaken, by Tim Tebow

I like Mr. Tebow, because he seems authentic and decent. The NFL doesn't seem to mind hiring thugs, felons, and drug users, and I like that Mr. Tebow appears unlikely to ever be any of those things. Then again, he's also unlikely to ever again play in the NFL.

Still, a likable guy about whom I only ever see good reports: helping special needs kids, helping kids with serious illnesses. So when I saw his book, I thought, why not?

And it was an enjoyable read. I'd recommend it to some folks. But even as I was reading, I found myself wondering what the book is really about. At the end, there was no unifying theme or message. Or maybe there was, about Mr. Tebow's faith, that I just wasn't resonating with.

So all-in-all, for me it was a donut: tasty but not really filling. Your mileage may vary.

Friday, May 12, 2017

Beat the Crowd, by Ken Fisher

Mr. Fisher is a good writer. I enjoyed reading this short book until I finished it and asked myself what I had learned. At that point it was clear to me: this book is a donut: fun to eat, but not nutritious.

Trend Following, by Michael Covel

I got suckered into buying the 2017 5th edition of Mr. Covel's book, primarily because I listen to some of his podcasts and I thought I'd learn from it. Clearly, I should have done more diligent research first. Then I'd have known that much of this painfully long (688 page) text is articles from other authors. Since it wasn't marketed as an edited collection, I didn't expect that.

Perhaps the problem is that this was the extra advanced version of the class and I need the entry level overview course. It was okay in that I did learn a few things. But it was painful, tedious, and not an efficient use of my time.

Sunday, April 9, 2017

Power Game, by Christine Feehan

Had I known before taking this novel off the library shelf that it was a paranormal romance, I'd not have read it. Which would have been unfortunate, since it wasn't bad. Could use about 75% less romance and 75% more action though. Turns out it is part of a series. No, I didn't enjoy it enough to want to read more.

The Obsidian Chamber, by Preston & Child

I really didn't know what I was getting into with this book, part of a series featuring a bizarre FBI agent and his associates. It seemed as though it would be a modern Sherlock Holmes style mystery. But no. There is the arcane and the occult, mysterious treatments to extend life. I didn't enjoy this one bit.

Saturday, March 4, 2017

Rewinder, by Brett Battles

This was a terrific story. In a strange world where the British rule North America, a low caste teen named Denny is selected to join a select group of time travelers. The idea is that he observe and report on historic events as a validation of historical documents, but he finds there's more to it than that. I won't say more to avoid spoiling a really good read.