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My Reading List

A collection of books I have had the pleasure to read (and re-read), over recent years.
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In this highly personal account, drawing on decades of covering Washington for the BBC, Bryant shows how the billionaire capitalised on the mistakes of his five predecessors, Ronald Reagan, George Herbert Walker Bush, Bill Clinton, George W. Bush, and Barak Obama, and how also he became a beneficiary of a broken politics, and iniquitous economy, an ailing media, a facile culture, disruptive new technology and the creation of a modern-day presidency that elevated showmanship over statesmanship.
Middle-ranked Mafia thug Aloysius Engel, is given the task (by his Mafia boss, Nick Revito), of exhuming Charlie Brody, one of his deceased Mafiosi associates who has inadvertently been buried in his favourite suit — the lining of which had been stuffed with thousands of dollars in drug money. After opening the casket, Engel is so shocked by finding the casket empty that he promptly falls into it! Finding out what happened to the body — and the money — forms the basis of this comedy of errors.
"361: Destruction of life; violent death; killing." Roget’s thesaurus of words and phrases. The men in the tan-and-cream Chrysler came with guns blazing. When Ray Kelly woke up in the hospital, it was a month later, he was missing an eye, and his father was dead. Then things started to get really bad. From Donald E. Westlake comes '361', a devastating story of betrayal and revenge, an exploration of the limits of family loyalty and how far a man will go when everything he loves is taken from him

My 2022 Reading List

85 Pins
'Dust of New York' (1919), by Konrad Bercovici is a collection of short stories, observations, and vignettes about New York City that blur the line between fact and fiction, but which are nevertheless entertaining and humorous, while providing a picture of the city and its citizens during the early years of the 20th century. The stories remind me of those written by New Yorker writer Joseph Mitchell, and collected together in his seminal work, 'Up In The Old Hotel'.
'Civilwarland in Bad Decline', by George Saunders, and first published in 1996, has become something of cult classic and a masterpiece of the short story form. In six stories and 'Bounty', a one-hundred page novella, Saunders cooks up an unforgettable cast of outcasts, losers and try-hards, each of whom is struggling to survive in an increasingly crazy world. This is my second reading of the work, and I can see myself returning to again - which is surely a good recommendation if ever there was.
In 'Great Jones Street', Bucky Wunderlick, dissatisfied with the life that his fame, fortune, and revolutionary image has bought, retreats to an unfurnished apartment on Great Jones Street in Manhattan. The novel has been described as a musical satire that probes the rights of individual, foreshadows the struggles of artists within the capitalist world and delivers a scathing portrait of our culture's obsession with the lives of the rich and famous. Or should that be infamous?

My 2021 Reading List

60 Pins
THE (AUDIO)BOOKWORM #59: THE ONE INSIDE Well, I did put in the time and effort to finish Jennifer Egan’s novel, and listen to the reading of The One Inside, by the late actor, screenwriter, playwright, and author Sam Shepard. In 55 or 56 short chapters, which may be better described as vignettes, Shepard writes about love, sex, death, acting, nose bleeds, more love and sex, and much more besides. His acutely observed writers eye and actors grasp of the dramatic moment, is able to turn even the m
I wish I could say this was the perfect novel to round out my year of reading, but wasn’t. A Guardian review calls it: “A work of remarkable cinematic scope,” and maybe it is. Maybe my problem with the book is its ‘wokeness’. That is, in the way it tries to tap into the zeitgeist that combines Black Lives Matter with feminism with the Second World War, with a criminal underworld that seems remarkably benign viven what we know about these organisations. I wish I like it more, but...
'Drive' was turned into an award-winning film starring Ryan Gosling, Carey Mulligan, and Oscar Isaac. In the book and film the lead character is referred to as ‘Driver’ — an occasional stunt car driver on movie sets who moonlights as a getaway driver for criminals looking for his specialised skillset. Having seen the film mulitiple times, I must say I prefer the movie. The characters seem more real and sympathetic, although given their morally ambiguous behaviour this sound counterintuitive.

My 2020 Reading List

60 Pins
My 2018 52-Book-Year Reading List #56: A Noble Radiance, by Donna Leon.
My 2018 52-Book-Year Reading List #55: The Pixels of Paul Cezanne, by Wim Wenders. The Pixels of Paul Cézanne: and Reflections on Other Artists (to give the book its full title), is a collection of writings—essays, speeches and eulogies—that cover music, art, theatre and of course film. As you would expect from someone with the visual acuity of a great film director like Wenders, his ‘ways of seeing’ are illuminating, informative, and insightful.
My 2018 52-Book-Year Reading List #54: The Keeper of Lost Things, by Ruth Hogan

My 2018 Reading List

58 Pins
I used to have a print copy of Tarantula, which I have since disposed of. I remember that I did make an attempt to read the book when it I first acquired it, but soon gave up. Thankfully, the actor Will Patton has more staying power than I have, and I must say his reading of Dylan’s prose brings the book alive. Patton seems to have discovered the secret to deciphering the narrator in each chapter, and gives each character his own voice while injecting the text with nuance, rhythm, and humour.
This is the first John Grisham book I have read in close to 30 years, when I read early novels such as The Firm, and The Rainmaker. Many of his books have been turned into movies, including The Pelican Brief, The Client and the aforementioned two novels. A former lawyer himself, John Grisham is an expert at this genre, and his work always rings with truth and believability. Reading The Guardians, has reminds me of what a great writer Grisham is. If you have not yet read the man, do so.
After being knocked unconscious in a fight, a Yankee mechanic named Hank Morgan wakes to find himself at Camelot in AD528. Condemned to death, he saves himself by using his 19th-century scientific knowledge to pose as a powerful magician, and goes on to develop gunpowder, electricity, and modern industrial methods. This tall tale is both a rollicking romantic fantasy and a canny social satire that includes knights of the Round Table, jousting, fair maidens, sorcerers, mystery and much mayhem.

My 2019 Reading List

79 Pins
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