Monday, January 26, 2015

Sometimes We Find Something We Do Not Expect.

The Memoirs of General W.T. Sherman (Library of America)The Memoirs of General W.T. Sherman by William T. Sherman

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I begin this book as an attempt to stir up my wife, whom is related to Jerfferson Davis, a true GRITS (a girl raised in the south).   I am a western boy and sometimes full of tenacity, and sprite. I tell you this because I was reading the book for material to share with my wife when she got to Southern. Sherman had such a great presence that no one had a neutral opinion on him.   Some hate him. Others loved him. So who was this man and was he as angelic or diabolic as people portrayed him to be... I have seen Sherman be a foot soldier for the history of the united states in the 19thc. Sherman was more human and much more complex than I originally thought.   William T. Sherman was a man of deep philosophy and believed in the UNION above all other thoughts.  His philosophy was deep enough to include a love for the South;  he retired in Missouri, began Louisiana State University, and wanted to treat Jefferson Davis with dignity and secretly hoped the former Confederate President would find a way to escape from reconstruction trials.    This book was well worth the time and energy I spent.   I recommend it highly!
just don't give up because of its length.

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Sunday, January 25, 2015

Review of Books

A Calculated Life , by Anne Charnock   (3 out of 5 Stars).
An utopian corporate world fulfilled by calculations to make it the best for a select people.  A drone girl is stunned to find an abnormality  in the natural world.   She looks at a Stick Insect and finds the QUESTION, "Why does this insect have wings but does not fly."  The QUESTION opens the road to discovery and the desire to free her self from a calculated world.   The book was average in its telling, but interesting enough to finish.

The Martian  by Andy Weir (Abandoned)  
Jack London  + Star Trek (the Original Outer Space Opera) - Star Wars (Hero Quest) =  The Martian 

Alas, I grew tired of all the weather and storms wiping out Potatoes on Mars. 

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Review of Books

New Year Goals and Plans with Reading:
I completely finished 11 books last year that were non fiction.  That is only 12.5 percent of my books were non fiction.   So my plan is to read one non fiction book for every three fiction books finished.

Minnesota, The North Star StateMinnesota, The North Star State by William W. Folwell

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I began this book as a way to meet my goal of reading more non fiction books through out the 2015 year.  My plan is to read one non fiction book for every three fiction books finished. 

I finished my first book (1:25)on Monday.

Why a book on Minnesota? My grandfather is turning 100 on February 5th. I was interested in learning more about the state, since he is a long time Minnesotan.   The book was a good historical  interpretation, shaped by the time it was written in 1908. I liked how non politically correct this history is. Truth is found sometimes in the stuff that dirties up our closet.  Today, we tend to shy away from controversial subjects. Minnesota becoming a state was truly controversial, especially in the 1850's before the clash of the Civil War.  The national philosophy was emerging upon definite power lines, and Minnesota was caught in the midst of this action.

       This book seemed to be his overall general reader of Minnesota's history.   I would love to delve deeper into his discussion of the tea pot dome period and its effect on Minnesota.    Also the civil war and Indian wars and their effect were interesting but were quickly raked over.   I am interested in finding out what ever happened to the 150 Swiss Watchmakers who came to Minnesota to find that the promise of the American Dream was not as good as advertised.   The book is a great general history of Minnesota and gave me more appreciation of the state.
The author has three/four volumes of history on Minnesota, which go deeper into themes and study.  So far, the volumes are not found at Project Gutenberg, so I will have to wait to dive into them. 
The book can be found free at the Gutenberg Project.

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Thursday, January 15, 2015

2015 Reads So Far

Books finished so far. 

1 Oz Reimagined: New Tales from the Emerald City and Beyond (Otherland #4.6) by John Joseph Adams **** (Four Stars)
Fun re imagining the tales. Also gave deeper meaning to the original tales.

2 The Storied Life of A.J. Firky by Gabrielle Zevin *****(Five Stars)
all book lovers out there, this book a homage to you. The characters are fun. The plot is interesting. And the book reads quickly. I dig it big time.

Reading or listening to currently:

A Calculated Life , by Anne Charnock   On Chapter 9 out of 18.

The Martian  by Andy Weir
Jack London + Star Trek (the Original Outer Space Opera) - Star Wars (Hero Quest) =  The Martian

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