I came to the realisation that I had a problem. The chest of drawers beside the bed was covered in books, too many books, 14 in total I discovered once I carted them away. After all, there are several perfectly good bookshelves to house them.
And much too many to read tonight, anyway.
Yet to start
- Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Survive, by Jared Diamond. I really enjoyed Guns, Germs and Steel a few years back, so I thought I’d pick this one up with a book voucher some friends gave me for my birthday (thanks Craig & Donnell!). But it’ll contain bad news, I’m guessing.
- No Pasarán! (vol. 2), by Vittorio Giardino. I have a mild fascination with the Spanish Civil War, especially the Anarchist part in those events. And their heroes, like Durruti (of whom I first came across in the name of Manchester band the Durutti Column, themselves borrowing from the Situationists of Paris in ’68). [WCL]
- War and Peace, by Leo Tolstoy. I’m stuck. I’m stuck at the bit where Pierre is wandering about occupied Moscow. And I’m thinking, WTF? But I must get back to it, it’s actually quite good. As are many of the “Classics” once you get into them – when we were in the UK the £2 classics were all I could afford, and I read lots of Dickens, Conrad, and especially, Hardy. And foolishly left them behind when we came home.
- Rifles:Six Years with Wellington’s Legendary Sharpshooters, by Mark Urban. More on the Napoleonic Wars, a current minor obsession of mine. The story of the 95th Rifles in the Peninsular War; a ripping yarn figuratively and literally. Great history. But the blood, oh.
Unread and honestly, unlikely to be
- Teach Yourself Ruby in 21 Days, by Mark Slagell. I entertained hopes of learning a programming language so I could implement my very own web app. (I have an Idea, you see.) But I never made it. And anyway, there are at least three gun Ruby on Rails developers in Wellington: two currently very active, and one on hiatus. Maybe I should talk to them.
Already read, but sitting around for no good reason other than sheer laziness
- The Man Who Broke Napoleon’s Codes, by Mark Urban. More malarkey from the Peninsular War. Another ripping yarn. A bit less blood though.
- Penguin History of New Zealand by Michael King. Good. Could have been longer though – I must track down a much more comprehensive history.
- MacOSX in a Nutshell, by Jason McIntosh et. al. Oh, this is just sad. What was I doing reading this in bed? It’s been sitting there for about eight months, if that is any mitigation…
- The Filth, by Grant Morrison et. al. Not up to Morrison’s usual standard I thought: funny, grotesque, inventive, weird, yes… but (unusually) a bit crap all the same. [WCL]
- Designing with Web Standards, by Jeffrey Zeldman. It’s been sitting there for months, ever since I got it back of Gryfon. It’s a good book, but it still hasn’t helped me try to relate the importance of web standards to people who couldn’t give a fuck so long as it works in their (IE) browser.
- See Me Go, by Michael Larsen. Picked it up for $2 at the big red shed. And worth every penny. OK, I shouldn’t be mean, it was a good read in parts, but unfortunately most of our muso types just aren’t that interesting.
- Pacific Edge: Three Californias, by Kim Stanley Robinson. OK, I suppose. It fits in nicely with the other two alt-futures of OC in the series. However, the utopia described is a little bit drippy even for my limply liberal affectation of a political stance. Luckily though, the man can write fantastically, and his Mars series is utterly brilliant (to the extent that I must, at some point, break my “no purchasing of fiction” rule and get them for re-reading). [WCL]
- Secret Power, by Nicky Hager. I got this one off the bookshelf for a refresher after writing my little posting about finding Waihopai on Google Maps. And never put it back.
- Life After God, by Douglas Coupland. I bought this when it first came out years ago. Coupland used to mean a lot to me in the pre-kids years: particularly Generation X. And after reading one of Heather’sandsun/2004/05/interlude.html I started to re-read Life After God, but other books intervened. And that, it seems, was in May last year. I didn’t think it was quite that long ago until I saw the date on Heather’s posting. I really do need to do some tidying.
But now it’s so late I’ll have to put them in the bookshelf tomorrow.