Recently in Books Category


I can't wait.

I'm an AFC

And if you don't know what that means, you obviously haven't read The Game by Neil Strauss.

Now, if you go in to this book thinking you are about to learn all the techniques of master pickup artists (mPUAs), you will be sorely disappointed. This is definitely not a teaching book.

It is, on the other hand, a first hand account of Neil's journey in to the world of pick up artists. It chronicles his transformation from Neil to Style, one of the master pickup artists. He talks about learning from all the people who were the "leader in the industry". He talks about some of his real life (writing articles) almost interfering with his new life as a pickup artist.

He then taks about how he and Mystery tried to start a community around this world called Project Hollywood and how the expectations and results didn't quite meet.

Overall, I thought this was a great book. Definitely kept me interested and didn't turn in to a book to try and teach me how to be a pickup artist, but more just chronicled the life of one. Something you should put on your reading list.

Harry Christmas!

A little present from our friends in the HP world:

New Harry Potter on sale in summer

LONDON, England (AP) -- The sixth novel in J.K. Rowling's blockbuster Harry Potter series, "Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince," will go on sale in Britain and the United States on July 16, publishers said Tuesday.

Bruce Sterling in Boston

The Zenith Angle

Bruce Sterling mentioned on his blog that he will be doing some touring to promote his new book, The Zenith Angle. He will be coming to Boston on May 12th. Details are:

Boston, MA
Wednesday, May 12th @ 7:00 PM
Talk & Signing
Harvard Coop
1400 Massachusettes Ave., Harvard Sq.
Boston, MA 02238
Phone: (617) 499-2012

(now, maybe I am crazy, but the Harvard Square and Boston, MA parts don't go together real well in the address, but whatever).

Details for other locations he will be visiting are here.

They're Almost Here

Stpehen King announced on his web site that the The Dark Tower series is DONE!

Book 5, 1880418568 is available now. The next book, Song of Susannah will be out next summer and the final book, The Dark Tower, will be out next November. I guess I need to go pick up Book 5 some time soon. I never read book 4 because I wanted to re-read the first three, so maybe this will be the time to do it.

Far Side



Reading Project

My second project of the day was a combination project. My buddy CMS recently got MTAmazon working correctly and sent me some information on how to do it, which I had promptly kept in my Inbox and done nothing with.

This morning, while talking to CMS, he said he was trying to get a reading list working and was having trouble. I figured this would be a good opportunity to help a friend, as well as get this working myself. I spent a bit getting everything going and slowly learning about Macros in MT, until I got the plugin working correctly for normal posts. Once I got this done, it was on to helping figure out how to get this to work without MT entries. After a little searching of the documentation, I found the MTMacroApply tag. Once this got turned on, things got somewhat better, but still were not working 100%. I saw that the macro we were using required something that was not always going to be there, so I added another macro to not need that and was off to the races.

The end result? I now have a reading list on the site. It can be found here.



I actually finished this a few weeks ago, but now that I got MTAmazon working, I thought I would try it out. This was a very interesting book. It was a combination of a history of baseball statistics and a look at how Billy Beane got a team to the playoffs 3 years in a row on a budget of next to nothing. It also profiled some players who have turned out much better than expected by old school stats. I would definitely say this is a book geared towards people who are fans of baseball and follow it at least to some degree. I really enjoyed the read, as it was a quick and easy read, but also interesting.

Two amusing points. After reading this book, i got a kick out of how many of the A's players I knew from the book when watching the Red Sox / A's playoff series. Second, looking at the 2003 stats, the A's didn't do all that well in either walks or OBP or OPS even though this was the stat that was so touted as what the A's looked for according to this book.

HP Science

College science course: Harry Potter

Wow! A college course that I would actually enjoy!

Good news for my favorite author

Stephen King receives high honors

"King, brand-name writer, master of the horror story and e-book pioneer, is receiving this year's medal for Distinguished Contributions to American Letters."

I've loved Stephen King for many years. Own just about every single one of his books, read most of them (with the few I haven't sitting on my window sill for reading). Good to see him awarded this way.

Pattern Recognition

I finished Pattern Recognition by Gibson last night. I definitely enjoyed it. The one thing I didn't like was the way it kind of went too quickly near the end. Just ended up being a little too quick, you felt there would be more tension before things came to a conclusion (well, sorta). I really liked that he set things more on today's world than this super cyber world of the future. It was amusing to hear things like "What would I get if I googled you?" in a book.

After finishing that, I started up on Seven Habits Of Highly Effective People. Hopefully, will get through this one quickly and start becoming highly effective.

Harry Potter ...

I finally finished Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix last night. I thought it was good. Definitely flew through it (when I read). People have said it was darker than the earlier ones. Yes, I definitely see that, but I see it much more of a coming of age story in this book. Harry is struggling through things that all teenagers suffer through. Don't you remember this time in your life? You were old enough to not be a little kid anymore, but were still not old enough to be an adult? I remember going through all sorts of struggles at this time in my life. Things like trying to figure out who I was and who I wanted to be, what I was looking for in life, etc. Hating the world, hating adults, not understanding the opposite sex, etc. I think it was well portrayed in this book.

Overall, it was a good book. Don't really like the fact that I don't know when the story is going to continue, because I felt like this one was way more of a cliff hanger than the earlier ones. I think she did a good job continuing the story along and moving it towards the final two books.

I think some of the subplots in this one are going to be expanded on a lot more in the next two. I think some of the characters introduced in this one are going to show up much more strongly in the next two books. I think more will be killed off as well. Hell, the author even hinted that she may kill Harry in the last book, so you never know.

Well, I'm not great at writing these, especially when I want to keep details of the story out of the review, so I'm done now.

Train Kept A Rollin'

Finished The Cluetrain Manifesto last night. This was a very interesting read. In the end, I definitely agree with a lot of what the authors are saying. The nice thing is that some of the stuff they discuss is already going on in my company.

My goal now is to try and take some of the ideas that we are not implementing (or at least implementing well) and get people to start thinking about them and trying to put them in to use. I think a lot can be learned and gained from doing some of the things discussed in the book.

It was funny trying to read this book because it kept making me think. And when thinking I got distracted and started not really reading some of the pages of the book and had to re-read some sections. I guess in some respects this is really a sign of a good book.

Though I am definitely a hard core geek at heart I have more and more been getting in to some of the business end of work again. I couldn't really do it at my last company (though I did it a lot at the company before) and now figure I should push some of my skills as far as I can and try to learn as much as possible. Also, I might as well make my voice heard because otherwise I could watch something happen that I think is bad and it could make me not happy to be at work anymore and I definitely don't want that.

Though the book told me to burn and bury it at the end, I do think I am going to suggest it to some co-workers and maybe even some management types. I think it has a lot of ideas that at least will make people think, as it did for me. Even if people disagree with the ideas at least they can see an alternate point of view and maybe can learn something from that.

The book has also inspired me to try and wirte down a number of the thoughts I have had about both collaborative projects internally, as well as knowledge management ideas. I think there are a number of things we should be doing both internally and externally using blogs and wikis and whatnot to really enhance the company.

Overall, awesome book, really glad I read it. Now on to HP5 (which I am actually already 120 pages in to).

Things to do in Boston when you bored

I just spent parts of the day reading Holes. I heard from a number of sources it was a good book, so I picked it up when I made my big order from Amazon. It didn't look like too bad of a read, so I started it this afternoon and now at 7:15 am already done with it. It was definitely a cool story. Lots of little pieces interwoven throughout the story that you really have to pay attention to to notice. I missed a few over the course of the book, but many of them get explained a bit better later on. Definitely a good quick read. I have to wait until Monday for HP5 to get here, so I figured this would be something good to pass the time :)

Atlas Shrugged the movie?

According to this, Atlas Shrugged, the awesome book by Ayn Rand is about to be made in to a movie. They have tried a number of times before, but it has never worked out. Hopefully this time it will. Will be interesting to see if they decide to make this a VERY long movie or a two or three part movie. I also hope they don't lose any messages from the book by the adaption.

Matrix Book ...

The Matrix and Philosophy: Welcome to the Desert of the Real

I bet this would be a good book. Maybe I will pick it up with my Amazon gift certificate from Ximian.

SF/Fantasy Books

According to this list, I am WAY behind on SF/Fantasy books. I consider myself an avid SciFi/Fantasy reader and the fact that I have not read a lot of these kind of scares me. I guess I gotta do some catching up.

Book Review: From a Buick 8

I finished
From a Buick 8: A Novel
last night. I have been a huge Stephen King fan for probably 15 years or so, so reading his books are always a pleasure for me. ( I have about 6 more to catch up on, as I have been trying to expand my horizons the last few years ).

This was a very interesting read. It is definitely not a horror story, so if that is what you are looking for, this book is not for you. It is told in a combined first person and third person which makes it very different from many books. It's basically a story about the strange happenings surrounding a car that gets left at a gas station in rural PA. (yes, amazingly it is not based in Maine).

I really enjoyed the book. I blew threw it in like a week. It did a good job building up the story and leaving you wanting to know what was going to happen next. There was very little character buildup, but it was really not necessary in this book. The main character was really the car and what it did and the "character" of the car was built up rather well.

Again, if you are looking for Stephen King horror, you won't find it here, but if you are looking for a good story, definitely an enjoyable read.


Finally, it has been announced! Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix will be released June 21, 2003! Yay! You can order it from Amazon by clicking here. Currently they do not have a price available, which is funny since, if you look

The interesting part is that if you look at here, they have a price for it. An even more interesting is if you look here, they have an adult version as well. What might the difference be?

But, all in all, IT'S COMING! Yay!


I finished reading Crypto: How the Code Rebels Beat the Government Saving Privacy in the Digital Age on my plane ride out to San Francisco.

It was a good read. I thought it was going to be much drier than it ended up being. I was thinking it was going to be straight history, but it was much more of a story. The author did a good job of interviewing people and getting the real back story and inside information rather than just what happened in public.

The story basically covers cryptography in the public sector from Diffie and Hellman up to recent things like a lot of the fighting that went on once the Internet gained popularity. Definitely very interesting read with a lot of good information. If you have any interest in cryptography or even just wonder all about how stuff gets encrypted when you guys stuff on the Net, you may find this to be an interesting read.


Powered by Movable Type 4.25

About this Archive

This page is an archive of recent entries in the Books category.

Blog is the previous category.

Boston is the next category.

Find recent content on the main index or look in the archives to find all content.