Category: Books

  • Books read 2022

    Books read 2022

    Books! Best to worst. Colm Toibin, The Magician Superb. There is a serious factual error in the last chapter that I pointed out to Toibin on his website, but his response is nonexistent. Labatut, Benjamín, When We Cease to Understand the World Superb. Dan Charnas, dilla time Excellent narrative, thoroughly researched, brimming with ideas like the geographic grid […]

  • Books read 2021

    Books read 2021

    Books! Best to worst.  Taffy Brodesser-Akner, Fleischman Is in Trouble Excellent. I will read anything Taffy writes. P.G. Wodehouse, My Man Jeeves Flat-out great and hilarious. Mark Harris, Mike Nichols Immersive and deeply satisfying for a pop culture biography. Ron Brownstein, Rock Me on the Water Cultural history of California in the 1970s. Thich Nhat Hanh, How […]

  • Books read 2020

    Books read 2020

    Books! Best to worst. Nate Chinen, Playing Changes Extraordinary essays on jazz and its recent history. Garth Greenwell, Cleanness Richly realized senses of dislocation and location. Andrea Camilleri, The Overnight Kidnapper Montalbano goodness. David Deutsch, Something about Infinity Well-written and thoughtful examination of creative explanations as a powerful source of knowledge and ultimately experience. Dismissals of […]

  • Exponent and the Beirut explosion

    Exponent and the Beirut explosion

    Exponent, for whom I wrote two books, was in the news today with two of their engineers interviewed by Scientific American. Engineers Suzanne Smyth and Russell Ogle discuss their pursuit of the causes and origins of such fires and explosions in an attempt to prevent future disasters. Cause and effect are so often traceable as […]

  • Books read in 2018

    Books read in 2018

    Books! Best to worst. Gabriel Garcia Marquez, One hundred years of solitude A re-read of the magic masterpiece. Colson Whitehead, The underground railroad Gorgeous prose and a wildly imaginative literalization of one the most important metaphors in American history. Robert Hughes, Rome: A Cultural, Visual, and Personal History Highly idiosyncratic history of Rome through the eyes of […]

  • Books read in 2017

    Books read in 2017

    Books! Best to worst. Too many music books, as usual, but hey. Sam Lipsyte, The Fun Parts Wack. Haruki Murakami, Absolutely on Music Six extraordinary conversations about music with Seiji Ozawa. Steve Turner, Beatles, ’66: The Revolutionary Year How a boy band became a zeitgeist. Robert Irwin, The Alhambra The story of “The Red” — the only Muslim palace […]