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What Books Are You Currently Reading or Read?

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Well, we have a lot of "what movies have you seen" and "what video games are you playing/played". I figured it was time to start up a new thread, because I couldn't find one..LOL

What books are you currently reading or have currently read?

I was sick over the weekend, so instead of watching movies, I spent most of my weekend reading. Here's what I read:

Neon Angel: Memoir of a Runaway by Cherie Currie. The autobiography of the former lead singer of 70's all-girl rock band The Runaways was very interesting. She delves into not only performing with the likes of Joan Jett and Lita Ford, but outside the box into her drug addiction and sexual encounters (even gives a disturbing account of how former manager Kim Fowley practically forced Cherie, drummer Sandy West, and a friend of Cherie's watch him get it on with a random woman in his hotel room). Her book would be the basis for the 2010 film THE RUNAWAYS that starred Dakota Fanning as Cherie and Kristen Stewart as Joan Jett (Pretty good biopic IMO).

Prince: The Music and His Masks by Ronin Ro. This was a pretty decent book on Prince, who is a good musician, but not exactly great when it comes to finances and business decisions. From what it sounded like, when his albums were successful, he wanted more albums out from the getgo and had zero support from his label and reveals why for seven years, he had changed his name from Prince to that androgynous symbol to his life today as a happy man who seemed to have gone through hell and back in the music industry.

I am currently reading:

Le Freak by Nile Rodgers. If the name isn't familiar, he is one of the top music producers in the world today. He is also known for his work as the guitar player for 70's disco/pop band Chic with late friend and partner Bernard Edwards on bass. Rodgers produced David Bowie's Let's Dance, Madonna's Like a Virgin; worked with Duran Duran, did the music for Eddie Murphy's COMING TO AMERICA. This is his autobiography, which like Cherie Currie, deals with his addiction to drugs and his recent battle with cancer.

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Oh, I like this thread. Well, I don't recall everything I read last year but here's a few.....

Non-Fiction

The Most Brilliant Thoughts Of All Time (In Two Lines Or Less) --- edited by John M. Shanahan. This is really a book of quotes in different subject matters. Pretty informative and sometimes funny or dumbfounding.

The Babylonians: An Introduction --- by Gwendolyn Leick. An interesting history of this civilization's culture.

Sphinx: History of a Monument --- Christiane Zivie-Coche. A look at the origin and history of the Egyptian monument.

The Fury Of The Northmen --- John Marsden. An interesting and brief look at the saints, shrines, and sea raiders during the roughly 300 year period of the Viking Age. This was pretty cool.

Celtic Goddesses --- Miranda Green. A look at the paganistic belief system and mythology of the these female warriors, mothers, and virgins. This has been pretty good. Still like a couple of chapters finishing it.

The Dragon Syndicates: The Global Phenomenon of the Triads --- Martin Booth. A fascinating history of the Chinese Triads. I highly recommend this!

Fiction

The Passage --- Justin Cronin. A post-apocalyptic story of vampires overrunning the world and the people trying to survive it. Very good.

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2011 wasn't as good of a reading year as 2010 was for me but here is what I finished last year:

1. American Rebel: The Life of Clint Eastwood (2010) by Marc Eliot

2. Decision Points (2010) by George Bush

3. Kurosawa: Film Studies and Japanese Cinema (2000/2005) by Mitsuhiro Yoshimoto (431p)

4. Surely You’re Joking Mr. Feynman!” (1985) by Richard P. Feynman (346p)

5. The Highest Goal (2004) by Michael Ray Intro by Jim Collins

6. Hollywood East (2000) by Stefan Hammond Foreword by Michelle Yeoh Did Review

7. Java Web Services (2009) by Martin Kalin CS

8. Rules for Radicals (1971) By Saul D. Alinsky

9. The Undercover Economist (2005) by Tim Harford

10. Reynolds Remembers: 20 Years With The Sacramento Kings (2006) by Jerry Reynolds; Grant Napear (Foreword); Don Drysdale (Contributor)

11. Minding Movies (2011) by David Bordwell & Kristin Thompson Did Review

12. Head First PHP & MySQL (2008) by Lynn Beighley & Michael Morrison CS

13. Ethical Realism (2006) by Anatol Lieven & John Hulsman

14. Films of Fury: The Kung Fu Movie Book (2011) by Ric Meyers

15. Head First Web Design (2009) by Ethan Watrall & Jeff Siarto CS

16. Yellow (2003) by Frank Wu

17. Planet Hong Kong Second Edition (2011) by David Bordwell

18. Head First Networking (2009) by Al Anderson & Ryan Benedetti CS

19. My Grandfather’s Son (2007) by Clarence Thomas

20. God, No!: Signs You May Already Be An Atheist and Other Magical Tales (2011) by Penn Jillette

21. The Power of Myth (1988) by Joseph Campbell with Bill Moyers

22. Great by Choice: Uncertainty, Chaos, and Luck (2011) by Jim Collins, Morten T. Hansen

23. Steve Jobs (2011) by Walter Isaacson

24. Beyond Peace (1994) by Richard Nixon

25. The Hammer (2007) Edited by Christian Stone and Mark Mravic

26. Beyond Uhura (1994) by Nichelle Nichols

I bolded the movie related books. A couple of reviews in there. For those interested in Kurosawa, I highly recommend the book above, but after Donald Richie's book and Kurosawa's autobiography.

I'm almost done with Hollywood Party: How Communism Seduced the American Film Industry in the 1930s and 1940s by Kenneth Lloyd Billingsley

Also working on Wuthering Heights.

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I am currently reading all of the books in stephen king's "The Dark Tower" series. I am about halfway throught the first book and I am really enjoying it. It is about this Gunslinger who is tracking this guy only known as the "Man in Black".

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2011 wasn't as good of a reading year as 2010 was for me

Wow, 26 books is an off year for you? I wish I had time to read that many books. With work, internet stuffs, kung-fus I'm trying to keep up with, marriage...I just don't have time to read as much these days. How was Beyond Uhura?

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Wow, 26 books is an off year for you? I wish I had time to read that many books. With work, internet stuffs, kung-fus I'm trying to keep up with, marriage...I just don't have time to read as much these days. How was Beyond Uhura?

I miss the days of college (way back when) when I even read much more. I think 2010 was around 41 books. Yeah it's tough to keep up when you work, gym, relationships, etc...

I love comparing the Star Trek related autobiographies and biographies with each other, so it was a fun read. What completely surprised me about her was her background in dance and later singing with Duke Ellington. I did not know she was such an accomplished dancer before Star Trek. It goes over her various family issues and her relationships (most of which I did not know) and her struggles as a single mother, her struggles with her own mom, her struggles with the racism in Hollywood and elsewhere, her work with NASA, and is quite an interesting read.

Like George Takai and James Doohan she is a bit anti-Shatner. She goes on and off about her liking, not liking, liking and eventually being really angry with him (especially after his book Star Trek Memories, though to be fair Shatner doesn't seem to have the greatest memory for being correct; though I liked that book as well) for Shatner being himself. Though it is funny how everyone liked his directing skills (not the movie) for number five.

She doesn't go into as much detail about the Star Trek days as I would have liked, but it was still quite fun reading. It's from 1995 so I would have liked to read an update of what happened since then.

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Just finished:

When Pride Still Mattered - biography of Vince Lombardi... probably wouldn't be happy with the Packers' performance last Sunday.

Currently reading:

Celebrated Cases of Judge Dee (Dee Goong An) - the character from "Detective Dee and the Mystery of the Phantom Flame." A few of his original stories from the 18th century, translated by Robert Van Gulik who later went on to use the same character in a series of mysteries in the 50s and 60s.

Off and on reading:

Rise and Fall of the Third Reich - an absolute bear of a book, but interesting in chunks of a few hundred pages at a time.

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Though it is funny how everyone liked his directing skills (not the movie) for number five.

There's so much about that movie that you could talk about. I got Shatner's side of the story at the Trek Expo 2010 in Tulsa.

Just finished:

When Pride Still Mattered - biography of Vince Lombardi... probably wouldn't be happy with the Packers' performance last Sunday.

I was strangely fine with it :xd:

(Grew up in MN)

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What I have read for the year so far:

1. The Path Between the Seas (David McCullough)- A solid, popular history of the conception and building of the Panama canal.

2. The Man in the High Castle (Philip K. Dick)- l'm a fan of Philip K. Dick's work but only recently got around to reading this intriguing counterfactual historical fiction set in an alternate past in which Nazi Germany and Imperial Japan were the victors of WWII.

3. The Coming of the Revolution (L.H. Gipson)- A study in the origins of the American Revolution.

4. Death of a Salesman (Arthur Miller)-A classic American play worth reading (and seeing!)

5. Undisputed (Chris Jericho)- The second part of Chris Jericho's autobiography. Not quite as funny as his first A Lion's Tale but still quite entertaining.

6. The Naked Ape (Desmond Morris)- A blunt, zoological and evolutionary take on the human animal.

7. The Varieties of Religious Experience (William James)- A classic psychological study of the various characteristics of religious phenomena.

8. The Jewish Mind (Raphael Patai)- An intellectual history of the Jewish intellect.

In progress:

1.) Racism: A Short History (George Fredrickson)- The title says it all.

2.) The Wealth of Nations (Adam Smith)- A classic economic work. I'm reading the unabridged version (1300 pages!) which means I have had to put the book down many times. A little past the halfway point now.

3.) Game of Thrones (George R.R. Martin)- Yes, I'm jumping on the Song of Ice and Fire bandwagon. So far though the book is not as engaging of a read as I thought it would be.

4.) Empires in World History (Burbank et al)- A study of world empires from a macro historical perspective.

5.) A History of Ancient Israel and Judah (Maxwell and Hayes)- A study of the origins of Israelite society up to the Persian period.

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5.) A History of Ancient Israel and Judah (Maxwell and Hayes)- A study of the origins of Israelite society up to the Persian period.

I'd be interested to know about this.

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I am currently reading all of the books in stephen king's "The Dark Tower" series. I am about halfway throught the first book and I am really enjoying it. It is about this Gunslinger who is tracking this guy only known as the "Man in Black".

Fantastic series.

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currently reading Asia Shock: Horror and Dark Cinema from Japan, Korea, Hong Kong, and Thailand

almost all my books are based on movie reivews or music related.

I have that book on my shopping list, how is it so far?

I'm going to try to read a bit more movie related books this year as well.

I finished last night Hollywood Party: How Communism Seduced the American Film Industry in the 1930s and 1940s by Kenneth Lloyd Billingsley, which I recommend to those who are interested in (1930s, 1940s, blacklist). A contrarian view compared to much that has been printed, but solid material with an abudence of evidence (if not always a great flowing read, sometimes comes out a bit jagged in pace).

Now I think I'll read Steve McQueen by Marc Elliot next which came out last year (reviews seem so-so on it). I've read Elliot's book on Clint Eastwood and I've read one previous book on McQueen Steve McQueen, the Final Chapter by Grady Ragsdale, but that only covers the last few years of McQueen's life)

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I like it, he goes fairly in depth on the selected titles, and has capsule reviews for several other related movies mixed in. There might be a few spoilers if you havent seen them, but he doesn't give it all away. More than most, but usually not all.

I'd seen several of these so it was kind of a nice review, now I want to rewatch Oldboy, Battle Royale, etc.

I see he's written a couple Samurai movie books, I'll probably get those eventually.

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Finished reading I Am Jackie Chan – My Life In Action between Xmas and New Years Eve. Eloquently written by Jeff Yang, particularly strong on JC’s childhood in the care of (drill)master Yu Jim Yuen, but not particularly revealing about the time after his career took off - the years between 1980 and 1999 are crammed into just about 70 pages!

Before that I immersed myself in Richard Mc Gregor’s meticulously researched The Party – The Secret World Of China’s Communist Rulers, a lucid view into the inner sanctums of power in today’s China.

At the moment I’m cross-reading some of the essays in Vivian P.Y. Lee’s Hong Kong Cinema Since 1997 – The Post-Nostalgic Imagination and in The Shaw Screen, A Preliminary Study, the latter a 350 page tome issued by the Hong Kong Film Archive.

Next in line will be Obika Gray’s Demeaned But Empowered – The Social Power Of The Urban Poor In Jamaica, a totally engrossing book I’ve been dipping my nose into for the past two years or so.

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Finished reading I Am Jackie Chan – My Life In Action between Xmas and New Years Eve. Eloquently written by Jeff Yang, particularly strong on JC’s childhood in the care of (drill)master Yu Jim Yuen, but not particularly revealing about the time after his career took off - the years between 1980 and 1999 are crammed into just about 70 pages!

I liked it too, and I agree that it is very in depth until about 82-83 when he gets back together with his opera brothers, then it jumps around. Too bad, cause I really wanted some more info during the mid to late 80s.

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I collect rare books/biographies so to speak and it's become a sort of hobby in the recent years so I try to read a lot of those when I can. I am not currently reading that much but I have started on That's All Folks by Mel Blanc of Looney Tunes fame and I may move onto reading my Muhammad Ali autobiography when I finish that.

I just recently got a Kindle Fire and I have two books on that Keith Richard's book and a Beatles book called You Never Give Me Your Money.

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Prospero Burns by Dan Abnett

Gentlemens Blood: A History of Dueling by Barbara Holland

The Japanese Experience: A Short History of Japan by W.G. Beasley

The Works of Mencius

So far. I typically read several books at once.

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Earlier this year I read Raymond E Feist's Riftwar series....4 fantasy novels, good stuff.

I recently finished GRR Martin's "Dance with Dragons" (book 5 of Song of Fire and Ice)...I've been a fan of this series for many years, and read the previous books as they came out.

I've also read a handful of cool graphic novels recently, including the first book of Mike Carey's "Lucifer" series, the first two Cerebus collections and Frank Miller's "Ronin".

Currently reading "Lamb: The Gospel according to Biff, Christ's Childhood Pal" by Christopher Moore. Very funny stuff, presents a clever and irreverent account of Jesus' youth without being overtly offensive to Christians.

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ronin was pretty wild iirc.

i'm going through lone wolf and cub right now.

fwiw i have a pretty serious comic stash.

mostly 70's, 80's, & 90's marvel

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currently reading Asia Shock: Horror and Dark Cinema from Japan, Korea, Hong Kong, and Thailand

almost all my books are based on movie reivews or music related.

Same for me too... I can't keep up with fiction/fantasy novels like everyone else, I'm way behind to catch up on what's good so I just stick to movies/biographies...

Anybody read manga/ Comics like Marvel/DC, is the New 52 reissues any good???

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i haven't picked up a new comic in a year or two.

i've got a pretty good frank miller 80's collection. i don't have all of the ronin series though.

i'm doing lone wolf and cub vol. 3 "the flute of the fallen tiger"

the portable machiavelli

reel baseball by less krantz

never really got into mc hammer....:wink:

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just bought a wonderful book on Hammer.

The Hammer Vault. Its like the ultimate guide/bible to every Hammer production. Exquisite.

Thanks--hadn't heard of this one, but will pick it up.

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