October 31, 2004

Books to Read While the Algae Grow in Your Fur, October 2004

Attention conservation notice: I have no taste.

Bruce Schneier, Beyond Fear: Thinking Sensibly About Security in an Uncertain World
Reviewed by Respectful of Otters
Robert M. Solow, Learning from "Learning by Doing": Lessons for Economic Growth
I can't honestly say you should buy this, but it's really worth reading if you care about the topic.
Spiro Kostof, The City Shaped: Urban Patterns and Meanings Through History
My father was one of Kostof's students in architecture school, and has enthused about him for as long as I can remember. If his classes were anything like this very learned, humane, skeptical and intelligent book, I can see why.
Charles Stross, The Atrocity Archives
Lovecraftian science fiction from the man who brought you A Colder War; but much lighter.
Terry Pratchett, Going Postal
Not Pratchett's best, but still very fun.
Bethany McLean and Peter Elkind, The Smartest Guys in the Room: The Amazing Rise and Scandalous Fall of Enron
Fun, when you forget that the frauds and blunders described inflicted a good deal of harm on many people.
J. L. Berggren, Episodes in the Mathematics of Medieval Islam
Very good not just at explaining what the medieval Islamic mathematicians did, and the historical context in which they worked, but also bringing out the distinctively mathematical themes and aspects of their work. Accessible to anyone with a decent memory of high school mathematics. (Really.)
Avram Davidson, Limekiller
One of the true greats.
John A. Hall and Charles Lindholm, Is America Breaking Apart?
Their answer is "No, don't be silly". I'd like to accept that wholeheartedly, and they make many strong arguments, but I can't help feeling that the summer of 2001 was not the most propitious of times to release this book, and I wonder if they wouldn't like to revise and extend their remarks.
Michael Lind, Up from Conservatism: Why the Right Is Wrong for America
The vast right-wing conspiracy: how it works and for whom, by an unusually intelligent and honest former employee. His chapters on the "triangular trade" and conservative myths are themselves worth the price of admission.
George L. Mosse, The Crisis of German Ideology: Intellectual Origins of the Third Reich

Books to Read While the Algae Grow in Your Fur

Posted at October 31, 2004 23:59 | permanent link

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