|I cannot live without books. -Thomas Jefferson||Reading Lists|
|Is there no virtue among us? If there be not, we are in a wretched situation. No theoretical checks - no form of government can render us secure. -James Madison, Virginia Ratifying Convention||Quotes|
Book Briefly Noted, Title Why Evolution Is True, Author Jerry A. Coyne, Rating 3.5,
Why Evolution Is True
Jerry A. Coyne
This book has been hailed by some as a clear-eyed exposition of modern evolutionary biology. I found it strong on the science, and disappointingly weak on the intellectual discipline.
Book Briefly Noted, Title The Ministry of Special Cases, Author Nathan Englander, Rating 4.0,
The Ministry of Special Cases
In The Ministry of Special Cases Nathan Englander tells a story of the Dirty War of Argentina as if in the guise of Isaac Bashevis Singer. The tale is steeped in irony, told through the eyes of a Jew, Kaddish Pozsnan, even outcast from the Jewish community of Buenos Aires.
Book Book Review, Title Shut Up, Legs!, Author Jens Voigt, James D. Startt, Rating 3.0,
Shut Up, Legs!
Jens Voigt, James D. Startt
Jens Voigt was a wonderful cyclist to watch in the Tour de France. He was an aggressive rider, willing to attack in breakaways with few odds of success, friendly and available before and after a race. His motto, 'Shut Up, Legs!,' can be appreciated by anyone who rides bicycles long distance, or any endurance athlete for that matter: Muscular pain from exertion must be ignored in the pursuit of endurance feats.
Book Book Review, Title The Laws of Medicine, Author Siddhartha Mukherjee, Rating 3.5,
The Laws of Medicine
Modern medicine began embracing scientific methods during the last couple of centuries, and in the past one hundred years this has produced an explosion of medical technologies that have aided physicians in significantly controlling some diseases and in particular, extending lives. Today in developed countries, many tests are available for diagnosis and many drugs are available for possible treatment. So why can't physicians today just run a comprehensive battery of tests for every sick patient and spit out a clear diagnosis, and with that, a clear prognosis and plan for a cure? Siddhartha Mukherjee proffers an answer via his Laws of Medicine.
Book Book Review, Title Along the Way, Author Britt Towery, Rating 4.0,
Along the Way
Britt Towery is a very American thinker, who's opinion columns from a West Texas newspaper are collected here. I warmed quickly to his direct and sometimes folksy Texas style. He holds strong opinions on many subjects, but has a particular emphasis regarding the importance of the First Amendment to the Constitution, which safeguards our freedom of speech and religion.
Book Pocket Review, Title The Martian, Author Andy Weir, Rating 4.0,
This 21st century Robinson Crusoe tale works because the lone marooned astronaut's effort at survival on Mars is framed around the question: how would a dogged, highly knowledgeable engineer solve the existential crises that cropped up and live yet another day?
Book Briefly Noted, Title Spandau: The Secret Diaries, Author Albert Speer, Rating 4.0,
Spandau: The Secret Diaries
Albert Speer, Hitler's personal architect and Reich Armaments Minister, kept a diary while he was in Spandau prison following his conviction at the post-war Nuremburg trials. These diaries provide a fascinating, hooded glimpse of the 'smartest man' in the Nazi leadership. At least, smart enough to evade the death penalty at the Nuremberg Trials.