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What book are you reading right now? - Page 181

post #2701 of 3824
Quote:
Originally Posted by coldwarrior1989 View Post

The History of the Peloponnesian War by Thucydides, translation by Thomas Hobbes - how can you not love that combo.

 

As a classics major it was a great favorite of mine as well!

post #2702 of 3824

Patrick White's (Nobel Prize in Literature from Australia) "The Vivisector" - also very strongly recommend "Riders in the Chariot."  -  This author is challenging, disturbing, perverse, endlessly fascinating, and completely addictive.  Patrick White was a real 'damaged' genius - and far too little known - can't recommend him strongly enough, though he demands patience - he's no easy slog!

post #2703 of 3824

Just finished "The Blinding Knife" by Brent Weeks (Book 2 of Lightbringer after "Black Prism"). Awesome climax. The cliff-hanger is killing me. Can't wait for book 3.

 

Now, starting "Undead to the World" by D. D. Barant (book 6 from Bloodhound Series). Love this series, I'm a sucker for tough women character :D

Bloodhound Series: fast paced story, lot of action, nice surprises, loveable characters, not too heavy plot and intrigues. Really fresh.

 

Bored with the stuffed high-fantasy books genre?! Try Demon Squat series by Tim Marquitz. Maybe the ideas not too original, but Tim Marquitz could take those standard materials and serve it different but FRESH. Fast paced story, actually, really fast. Nice twist on the story, lovable main character. Don't too put of with the 1st book story telling, because it's getting better and better.

 

Another book with refreshingly manly atmosphere: Alloy of Law by Brandon Sanderson (yes, him AGAIN. But he is really good). Think about high-fantasy genre fused with gunslinger: magic and gun and bandits and sheriff and whats-not. Very nice. Moderately fast paced story, nice actions and epic final battle (as usual by Brandon Sanderson).

 

"The Painted Man" and " The Desert Spear" by Peter V. Brent is good also. Waiting for the 3rd book.

post #2704 of 3824

I've seen a lot of love for Murakami on here.    Never read any of his books or heard much about him, but I plan on picking up one of his novels soon. 

 

Which one would you guys recommend I start with?
 

post #2705 of 3824

"The Honors Class: Hilbert's Problems and Their Solvers" by Ben Yandell

 

It's a collection of bios and histories of the solvers of the Hilbert Problems. David Hilbert was a great mathematician of the late 19th/early 20th century. Around the start of the 20th century he identified 23 problems of great difficulty and importance in an effort to publicize and to encourage work on them, setting the goal to solve them by the end of the 20th century. 

 

Most were solved by the start of the 21st century, this book describes the people and the paths they took and how the history of the 20th century influenced their efforts.

 

The work these people did is immortal. 2000 years from now their names will be remembered and honored, much like Pythagoras and Euclid are today.

 

Absolutely inspiring if your are interested in mathematics.

post #2706 of 3824

^ That reminds me of Srinivasa Ramanujan, who I was recently reading about. Was Hilbert an Autodidact as well, or was he formally educated? Evidently we're just getting caught up with Ramanujan now, and applying his work to quantum physics research.

 

"Suppose that we rate mathematicians on the basis of pure talent on a scale from 0 to 100, Hardy gave himself a score of 25, J.E. Littlewood 30, David Hilbert 80 and Ramanujan 100."

post #2707 of 3824
Quote:
Originally Posted by grokit View Post

^ That reminds me of Srinivasa Ramanujan, who I was recently reading about. Was Hilbert an Autodidact as well, or was he formally educated? Evidently we're just getting caught up with Ramanujan now, and applying his work to quantum physics research.

 

"Suppose that we rate mathematicians on the basis of pure talent on a scale from 0 to 100, Hardy gave himself a score of 25, J.E. Littlewood 30, David Hilbert 80 and Ramanujan 100."

 

Autodidacts in math or science at the level of Ramanujan are very, very rare. 

 

Hilbert was a graduate of the great pre- WWII German technical schools and went on the have many great mathematicians as students. Ramanujan unfortunately lived in isolation from his mathematical peers most of his life and died at the early age of 32.

post #2708 of 3824

I think the easiest book of his to get into his Norwegian Wood. That's where I'd recommend starting.

 

I used to be quite the voracious reader, but rarely have time for it now. Contrary to popular belief, working at a library does not give you lots of extra time to read. :-P However, I've just begun (this very night) my ambitious plan to read Robert Burton's 'The Anatomy of Melancholy' from cover to cover--I fully expect that this will take me at least sixth months on my current schedule to complete, if not longer! Still, even having never actually read it in its entirety, it's usually what I tell people my favorite book is, as you can open it up to any page and begin reading and quickly become bedazzled and completely entranced by what's on the page. If I had to reduce my entire library to only two or three books, this would without doubt be the one book I wouldn't even consider getting rid of--even Shakespeare, The Red Book, Homer, Moby Dick, The Tale of Genji, Ulysses, and The Collected Works of Borges would all disappear before The Anatomy.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mac336 View Post

I've seen a lot of love for Murakami on here.    Never read any of his books or heard much about him, but I plan on picking up one of his novels soon. 

 

Which one would you guys recommend I start with?
 

post #2709 of 3824

Recently finished The Tibetan Gospel by Alvaro Bermejo. Now I'm with The Eight from Katherine Neville.

post #2710 of 3824

Kind of interesting to see a discussion on Murakami since I'm actually re-reading Haruki Murakami's Norwegian Wood right now. I enjoyed it the first time I read it, so I decided to read it again, haha. I haven't read any of his other stuff, but I think I want to try Kafka on the Shore next.

post #2711 of 3824

1000

 

Great book!

post #2712 of 3824

4 Hour Chef 

 

Took me from burning pancakes to steaming chicken and cooking lamb in a week

 

highly recommended if you never cooked anything

post #2713 of 3824

I am making a note of this lol. If I can't fry something, microwave something, or rice-cooker something, I tend to not bother. I need to expand my horizons lol.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kiont View Post

4 Hour Chef 

 

Took me from burning pancakes to steaming chicken and cooking lamb in a week

 

highly recommended if you never cooked anything

post #2714 of 3824

700

post #2715 of 3824

Jonathan Livingston Seagull (1972)

 

 

 

The book tells the story of Jonathan Livingston Seagull, a seagull who is bored with the daily squabbles over food. Seized by a passion for flight, he pushes himself, learning everything he can about flying, until finally his unwillingness to conform results in his expulsion from his flock. An outcast, he continues to learn, becoming increasingly pleased with his abilities as he leads an idyllic life.

One day, Jonathan is met by two gulls who take him to a "higher plane of existence" in that there is no heaven but a better world found through perfection of knowledge, where he meets other gulls who love to fly. He discovers that his sheer tenacity and desire to learn make him "pretty well a one-in-a-million bird." In this new place, Jonathan befriends the wisest gull, Chiang, who takes him beyond his previous learning, teaching him how to move instantaneously to anywhere else in the Universe. The secret, Chiang says, is to "begin by knowing that you have already arrived." Not satisfied with his new life, Jonathan returns to Earth to find others like him, to bring them his learning and to spread his love for flight. His mission is successful, gathering around him others who have been outlawed for not conforming. Ultimately, the very first of his students, Fletcher Lynd Seagull, becomes a teacher in his own right and Jonathan leaves to teach other flocks.

[edit]Part One

Part One of the book finds young Jonathan Livingston frustrated with the meaningless materialism and conformity and limitation of the seagull life. He is seized with a passion for flight of all kinds, and his soul soars as he experiments with exhilarating challenges of daring and triumphant aerial feats. Eventually, his lack of conformity to the limited seagull life leads him into conflict with his flock, and they turn their backs on him, casting him out of their society and exiling him. Not deterred by this, Jonathan continues his efforts to reach higher and higher flight goals, finding he is often successful but eventually he can fly no higher. He is then met by two radiant, loving seagulls who explain to him that he has learned much, and that they are there now to teach him more.

[edit]Part Two

Jonathan transcends into a society where all the gulls enjoy flying. He is only capable of this after practising hard alone for a long time (described in the first part). In this other society, real respect emerges as a contrast of the coercive force that was keeping the former "Breakfast Flock" together. The learning process, linking the highly experienced teacher and the diligent student, is raised into almost sacred levels, suggesting that this may be the true relation between human and God. Because of this, each has been described as believing that human and God, regardless of the all immense difference, are sharing something of great importance that can bind them together: "You've got to understand that a seagull is an unlimited idea of freedom, an image of the Great Gull." He realizes that you have to be true to yourself: "You have the freedom to be yourself, your true self, here and now, and nothing can stand in your way."

[edit]Part Three

In the third part of the book are the last words of Jonathan's teacher: "Keep working on love." Through his teachings, Jonathan understands that the spirit cannot be really free without the ability to forgive, and that the way to progress leads—for him, at least—through becoming a teacher, not just through working hard as a student. Jonathan returns to the Breakfast Flock to share his newly discovered ideals and the recent tremendous experience, ready for the difficult fight against the current rules of that society. The ability to forgive seems to be a mandatory "passing condition."

"Do you want to fly so much that you will forgive the Flock, and learn, and go back to them one day and work to help them know?" Jonathan asks his first student, Fletcher Lynd Seagull, before getting into any further talks. The idea that the stronger can reach more by leaving the weaker friends behind seems totally rejected.

Hence, love, deserved respect, and forgiveness all seem to be equally important to the freedom from the pressure to obey the rules just because they are commonly accepted.

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