cover title author avg rating rating my rating review Down_arrow date read date added
 
Freedom
3.68
If nothing else, "Freedom" is a page-turner. And, unlike so many contemporary novelists, Franzen really seems to care about his characters. And I got...more
not set
Oct 10, 2010
 
The Sagas of Icelanders
4.28
I picked up this tome a few years ago and tried to speed through it, like I was reading a history book or a modern, plot-driven page-turner. Bad idea....more
not set
Jun 28, 2009
 
The Third Coast: When Chicago Built the American Dream
3.63
Well written and solidly researched. I learned a lot reading this book. Highlights include compelling portraits of Mies van der Rohe, Sun Ra, and Maha...more
not set
Aug 04, 2013
 
The Windward Shore: A Winter on the Great Lakes
4.19
There are chunks of this that thin book of essays that are deep and beautiful. Dennis hunkers down for the winter in three different houses on the coa...more
not set
Dec 24, 2013
 
How Will You Measure Your Life?
4.02
Christensen attempts to take the best theories about running a business and then apply them to running your life. I like the fact that he believes in...more
not set
Jan 26, 2013
 
Secrets of the Temple: How the Federal Reserve Runs the Country
4.08
Weighing in at 717 pages, not counting reference notes or appendices, "Secrets of the Temple" is part history, part sociological text, part political...more
not set
Feb 10, 2010
 
Factotum tie-in
3.98
I read this because I kept hearing about the movie, which features Matt Dillon in the Chinaski roll, and I wanted to read the book first. To be honest...more
Nov 2007
Nov 21, 2007
 
Reality Hunger: A Manifesto
3.60
A collated series of musings and aphorisms, I think this tome was supposed to be some kind of shot across the bow to the literary establishment. It re...more
not set
Mar 04, 2010
 
We Had It So Good
3.41
I found the characters in this novel and their thoughts on the world to be insufferable. I guess I have to give Grant credit, that she's a strong enou...more
not set
Nov 05, 2011
 
The Thousand Autumns of Jacob de Zoet
4.00
My wife picked this up at the library, and I was intrigued enough by the title and then the subject matter (a Dutch trading post in the Nagasaki harbo...more
not set
Dec 04, 2010
 
Kids of the Black Hole: Punk Rock Postsuburban California
3.52
I like how MacLeod combines personal anecdotes with cultural analysis and music history to tell the story of the rise of SoCal punk rock in the late 7...more
not set
Oct 29, 2011
 
Super Trader: Make Consistent Profits in Good and Bad Markets
3.94
At least in theory, between jaunts to the swimming pool and the library with my 2-year old son, I am supposed to be making money at this trading thing...more
not set
Nov 16, 2010
 
Thinking, Fast and Slow
4.03
There are some interesting ideas here, but why do so many of these left-brain science types insist on writing their own books? Like a lot of generaliz...more
not set
Feb 20, 2012
 
The Pale King
3.94
There are sections of The Pale King that are breathtaking in their flights of fancy and their narrative skill. There are parts that are deep, evocativ...more
not set
Feb 22, 2013
 
Trade Your Way to Financial Freedom
3.88
As its lame title hints, the writing style in this book is blunt, rather awkward, and not much fun at all.

But the ideas here, while deceptively simpl...more
not set
Jul 25, 2009
 
You Couldn't Ignore Me If You Tried: The Brat Pack, John Hughes, and Their Impact on a Generation
3.80
A detailed look at 80's teen flicks, in particular those directed by John Hughes, Cameron Crowe, and Joel Schumacher. Gora is a true believer, and thi...more
not set
Aug 13, 2011
 
The Atom Station
3.51
Halldor Laxness is probably my favorite writer, but this book is almost flawed enough for me to take him off that pedastal. It was written in 1948, du...more
not set
Jun 14, 2009
 
In the House Upon the Dirt Between the Lake and the Woods
3.34
This is a disturbing book by a talented writer. I hated it at times. Of the novel's 300 pages, probably 280 of them detail some type of degradation to...more
not set
Dec 30, 2013
 
Galatea 2.2
3.74
Powers is a man of ideas, and he discusses several interesting ones here: the nature of love, of fiction, of consciousness. The plot is woven around t...more
not set
Sep 05, 2011
 
Bet the Farm: How Food Stopped Being Food
3.45
Kaufman digs deep for both facts and ideas. He doesn't accept the easy platitudes from either the corporate apologist or the wide-eyed activist. My fa...more
not set
May 19, 2013
 
A Game of Thrones (A Song of Ice and Fire, #1)
4.44
This is pretty much pure escapist fantasy, something that I guess I needed to help get through the bowels of another Midwestern midwinter. Martin does...more
not set
Jan 09, 2011
 
A Supposedly Fun Thing I'll Never Do Again:  Essays and Arguments
4.28
I consider my slog through all 1,100 pages of Wallace's "Inifinite Jest" the single most fruitless and frustrating reading experience of my adult life...more
not set
Nov 29, 2009
 
The Omnivore's Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals
4.16
A well-researched book on the dynamics of the food we eat. I have a little bit of an issue with the lefty platitudes and could see where Pollan was he...more
Jul 2007
Nov 04, 2007
 
The Clash: Strummer, Jones, Simonon, Headon
4.32
For me, this is the ultimate coffee table book. It's chock full of cool photos and original archival materials, along with fairly extensive thoughts b...more
not set
Apr 07, 2010
 
Real Boys: Rescuing Our Sons from the Myths of Boyhood
3.76
As the father of two young sons, I was told that I should read this. I think the most memorable thing I take away from it is how times have changed in...more
not set
Aug 30, 2012
 
The Chemistry of Tears
2.97
A curator at a London historical museum discovers that her lover of many years is dead. She takes solace in the writings of a 19th Century Englishman...more
not set
Aug 14, 2012
 
Meadowlands
4.11
I recently read Gluck's "The Wild Iris" and loved her use of language and her turn of phrase, along with her ability to stick the knife in, mid-stanza...more
not set
Mar 17, 2013
 
Here Comes Everybody
3.91
Fearnley was the accordionist for the Pogues. Twenty some years later, he has written a book about their heyday. He has done an excellent job, coveyin...more
not set
Jan 13, 2013
 
Meeting Jesus Again for the First Time: The Historical Jesus and the Heart of Contemporary Faith
4.11
I should say up front that if I knew Borg was part of the Jesus Seminar, I probably never would have chosen this book. And the post-modern slight-of-h...more
not set
Mar 02, 2011
 
The Anatomy of Story: 22 Steps to Becoming a Master Storyteller
4.23
Ostensibly a book about screenwriting, John Truby somehow manages to capture the essence of story craft within a fairly contained set of rules and gui...more
not set
Oct 19, 2011
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