Current Reading: February 2022

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Current Reading: February 2022

helmikuu 5, 2022, 2:41 pm

I completed going through Georgia A Guide To Its Towns and Countryside which of part of the American Guide Series. The history component was as well written as any I have read so far. I'm going through each state in alphabetical order.

helmikuu 5, 2022, 2:45 pm

Afterglow of Empire, about Egypt's Third Intermediate period.

Tells a very pharaoh-centric story about the period, but if that's what you want (rather than ceramic typology or social history or whatever) it's excellent.

helmikuu 5, 2022, 8:56 pm

I completed The Chicago today. It is part of the Rivers of America series. It was an enjoyable read. It's the best one I have read so far as I go through the series in alphabetical order.

I also completed The Story of Estes Park Grand Lake and Rocky Mountain National Park. This 4th edition, published in 1917, has the information about Grand Lake and leaves out the guidebook part.

Mills produced a number of books about the area around Estes Parks and at times includes parts of earlier books he had written. They are enjoyable to read. This one is short and it took maybe an hour to read.

helmikuu 6, 2022, 10:34 pm

Finished a thoroughly enjoyable Jim Fisk: The Career of an Improbable Rascal by W. A. Swanberg. Swanberg is a good storyteller with flourish and style. I had previously read his Citizen Hearst and this book is as good.

helmikuu 9, 2022, 9:18 pm

Finished up The Dawn of Everything, which is what you get when an anthropologist and an archaeologist take a lot of foundational political science and sociology to task for a lame understanding of early and "primitive" societies. I enjoyed it, but seven hundred pages is a lot for what is basically a polemic.

helmikuu 10, 2022, 12:58 pm

I finished Mickey Free Manhunter which talks about scouts, especially Mickey Free, who worked for the Army and I think the Bureau of Indian Affairs. Wow, all I can say is the west was really wild back then!

helmikuu 14, 2022, 1:49 pm

I finished volume 1 of 3 of First white women over the Rockies; diaries, letters, and biographical sketches of the six women of the Oregon Mission who made the overland journey in 1836 and 1838. These were all missionary wives going to Oregon to teach various indian tribes. Their trips were not very successful.

helmikuu 14, 2022, 9:57 pm

I'm working my way through The Last Emperor of Mexico by Edward Shawcross. Quite heavy going but now at least I understand how a brother of the Austrian Emperor came to briefly be the Emperor of the Mexicans.

helmikuu 16, 2022, 8:53 am

Finished up Royal Witches, which is less about witchcraft and more about the Wars of the Roses from the perspective of the elite women involved, and their precarious position when court politics turned into a blood sport. Not bad at all but I did expect a little more witchcraft!

helmikuu 19, 2022, 12:37 pm

A Woman of No Importance by Sonia Purnell. This was the story of Virginia Hall, WWII's most decorated spy. A great non-fiction about Virginia, an American, who ended up being the primary operative in Vichy, France, during WWII. At one time she had 1500 couriers, radio operators, etc., under her auspices. She narrowly escaped Klaus Barbie, who had a bounty placed on her head. This book was so very well researched that it was easy to go down needed rabbit holes, and I did! 368 pages 5 stars

Klaus Barbie: The Shocking Story of How the U.S. Used This Nazi War Criminal As an Intelligence Agent by Erhard Dabringhaus. The U.S. employed Barbie and helped him escape punishment in France. This book appears to have been little researched and seems to be opinion. Not worth the time 207pages 2 stars

France: The Dark Years, 1940-1944 by Julian Jackson. A superbly written account of France during WWII, especially Vichy. Since reading A Woman of No Importance, I discovered that my studies of and U.S. textbooks about Vichy, France, are quite distorted. After reading this I can categorically say that Vichy, France, was by no means a "free zone", and in fact, perhaps more dangerous than Paris. Well worth the 608 pages 5 stars

helmikuu 19, 2022, 3:01 pm

I completed A Guide to Alaska Last American Frontier, part of the American Guide Series in the Federal Writers Project I'm going through. The writing in the summary topics is better than some have been. At the time this was written there were basicly no roads in Alaska of any consequence. The descriptions were written up by the 6 geographic areas of the territory. I skimmed them.

helmikuu 22, 2022, 7:14 am

Finished The Bookshop of the World, which is a really excellent examination of how the Netherlands became saturated with print and, arguably, becoming the first mass-media society in the West.

helmikuu 23, 2022, 1:22 pm

The Nation's Capital Brewmaster by Mark Benbow
Biography of Christian Heurich who founded an award winning brewery here in Washington, DC. Sadly the brewery was torn down in 1962. Heurich's DC home is now a museum and hosts beer tasting events.