Saturday, August 30, 2014

Books Read in August

This was a rough month, or at least a very full month.  We've done a spot of camping.  We've had people going back to school in waves.  I had a meeting that may launch a very big project (fingers crossed!).  To top all of that off, my Kindle broke down a bit and I lost all of my notes on the second half of 'Paradise Lost'.  I'm now trying to figure out if I can nurse it for a couple more months or if I need to replace it sooner. 
Which isn't to say that I didn't get some quality reading in:
  • A History of Western Philosophy, Bertrand Russell - With more Kant coming up, I thought that I needed some more grounding before I tackled him.  To that end, I read the last third of Russell's history (basically from the Renaissance on).  I found this book fascinating, especially about the Renaissance.  I'm sure I'll write about that at some time.
  • Foucault's Pendulum, Umberto Eco - Set in Milan, this book is about a group of publishers that attract some mystical writers.  For a game, they mix up the mysticism (Templars, Illuminati, Rosicrucians, etc.) and make up a 'plan', basically a long theory that explains a partial message.  Some of the mystics get wind of this 'plan' and they mistakenly believe that it's true.  Trouble ensues.  This is sometimes mentioned as 'a thinking man's 'Davinci Code'.  It's probably not fair to Eco as his book is much, much deeper and less of a thriller.
  • Black Out/All Clear, Connie Willis - This is a two part novel about a group of time traveling historians that get stuck in World War II during the blitz.  The story is interesting and well told, but the most striking thing is the behavior of the Brits during the bombing campaign.  I can't imagine what that must be like.  This was a reread for me.
Everyone is now back at school and the routine is (hopefully!) settling down again.  

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