Tuesday, October 31, 2006

You are what you read...

Since my County Executive prediction post just ain't getting done today, I'll answer the call of Jim Adams, who asked me what I like to read. But instead of making it just about me, let's all take a minute to share in comments what's on our nightstand or bookmarks folder.


Unfortunately, as I'm sure is the case with most of us, I don't read as many as I'd like. Generally, I'm a fan of books on history, social science, religion, fiction and some memoirs. The books I'm currently reading are:

  1. The Conservative Soul by Andrew Sullivan.
  2. The Geography of Opportunity by Xavier N. De Souza Briggs and William Julius Wilson.
  3. Alexander Hamilton by Ron Chernow (200 pages down, only 500 to go!).
The five most recent books I've read are:
  1. Chuck Klosterman IV by Chuck Klosterman.
  2. This Land by Anthny Flint.
  3. Under the Banner of Heaven by Jon Krakauer.
  4. State of Fear by Michael Crichton.
  5. The Consequences of Growing Up Poor by Greg J. Duncan and Jeanne Brooks-Gunn.
Trying to pin down favorite books is impossible for me, but if I had to choose a couple, I'd go with:
  1. Silent Spring by Rachel Carson.
  2. The Corner by David Simon and Edward Burns (the guys who created The Wire).
  3. And, for some fiction, The Monkey Wrench Gang by Edward Abbey, which is the source of the Hayduke name.
Magazines and blogs:

Most of my reading time is spent with blogs and magazines. Of the magazines, my regular reads are:
  1. The Economist
  2. The New Republic
  3. Reason
  4. And, less so, The American Prospect
Blogs basically rule my reading habits now, and here are those that I read daily (this is the only list that's actually ranked in order).
  1. Andrew Sullivan -- a principled conservative
  2. Matthew Yglesias -- a principled, but pragmatic, young liberal
  3. Reason: Hit and Run -- ah, libertarians
  4. Marginal Revolution -- two economists talk economics
  5. Mac Rumors -- source of all the latest dirt future products from Apple
  6. Deadspin -- snarky sports commentary
That's it for me. What about you?


wordbones said...

I just finished "The One Percent Doctrine" by Ron Suskind. It was a good read and a bit unsettling.

The best book (fiction) I've read recently was "I Am Charlotte Simmons" by Tom Wolfe.

Hayduke said...

I keep meaning to pick up Wolfe's book, but something else always gets in the way. I really liked "Bonfire of the Vanities" and "The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test."

alison said...

I, too, wish I had more time to read, especially for pleasure. The 2 books that I'm sort of working through now, albeit very slowly, and can recommend are The Reluctant Mr. Darwin by David Quammen (I also recommend his Song of the Dodo) and The Power of Positive Dog Training by Pat Miller (I'm trying to spread the word on positive dog training, and Pat Miller is in Hagerstown). I just finished Dark Star Safari by Paul Theroux, a required read for school, but would highly recommend it as well.

I couldn't put Under the Banner of Heaven down-I was fascinated and repulsed at the same time. Have you read Into Thin Air?

FreeMarket said...

The book I am reading now is totally awesome. It is “The God Delusion” by Richard Dawkins. It is unlikely that those who need to read it most ever will, primarily because they will believe it is the work of Satan. I am 100 pages into and I can’t wait to finish. I read “The Selfish Gene” by the same author earlier this year and thought that was great as well. I just finished “The Tipping Point” by Malcolm Gladwell, and I recommend it. I picked up “Blink”, also by Malcolm Gladwell, from the library today. I recently read “The Caged Virgin” by Ayaan Hirsi Ali, and I highly recommend it to anyone who wants to learn about the relationship of women and Muslim culture. I generally hate fiction, especially after reading “The Kite Runner”, which I very nearly set fire to before finishing.

Some of my favorites that I highly recommend are:
“Empty Cages” by Tom Reagan (a must read)
“Team of Rivals” Doris Kearns Goodwin
“Manufacturing Consent” Noam Chomsky and Ed Herman
“Give me a Break” by John Stossel

My favorite national blogs are mostly economics related: “Angry Bear”, “Beat the Press”, “The Street Light” and “Stefan Karlsson’s Blog”

David W. Keelan said...

I am trying very hard to get through "An Inconvenient Truth". Seriously.

Are you going to post Mary Catherine's email message?

Greg Pultorak said...

Reading now:
The Brothers K - Duncan

Last Five:
State of Denial - Woodward
Sex, Drugs, Cocoa Puffs - Klosterman
Diary - Palahniuk
Empire Falls - Russo
Fiasco - Ricks

I would highly recommend all of those besides 'Diary' which I hated.

National Geographic
Car and Driver

capitol punishment - Nats news
dilbert blog

Anonymous said...

The last book I finished was "The things they carried" by O'Brian. excellent.

I have on my bedside table:
"Better not bigger" by Fodor
"Geography of Nowhere" by Kunstler
"Selected Poetry of Tennyson" by- well you know who.
"The Great Fire" by Hazard

I am reading "Gilead" for my book group.

mary catherine

Dave Wissing said...

The book I am reading now is "The Way To Win: Taking the White House in 2008" by Mark Halperin and John Harris. I'm about half way through, but he basics of the book center around the political genius of Bill Clinton and Karl Rove about their part in winning back-to-back terms in Presidential elections as well as the power of The Drudge Report in today's media.

I am a reader of history, most of my reading centers on the American Revolution, United States political history and biographies of poltiical figures of all stripes, from the left to the right.

All that being said, my favorite book by far is "1984". Nothing else comes close in my mind. It was requried reading when I was in high school, and I have read it two times since and still find new things in the book that I come across each time. I personally think it still should be required reading in high school.

I don't read many magazines anymore other than my NRA magazine and Sports Illustrated. Too many blogs to even mention, there is so much out there.

Hayduke, I'd be interested to hear what you thought about the premise of "State of Fear".

rollo may said...

Currently reading

1. Finding Flow -- what it's like to be a human being, "phenomenonologically" (i.e., experientially)--boredom, pleasure, anxiety, excitement, flow (being "in the zone") etc. and how these experiences are affected by work,pleasure (TV, sports, hobbies), relationships, etc.
2. The Question of Happinss -- written by a teacher of the most popular course at Harvard. He's was interviewed on NPR recently.
3. The Conservative Soul -- has me wondering if I might even be a conservative (as he defines it), much to my surprise.
4. The Memory Keeper's Daughter
5. Small Is Beautiful -- written in 1975, apparently the inspiration for a number of liberal causes, including the anti-nuclear power movement. His book, Guide for the Perplexed" which I liked a lot, has the philosophical and religious underpinnings for Small is Beautiful, and I loved that book.

Recent reads:

1. The Keys to the Effortless Golf Swing.
2. The Wisdom of Wilderness by Gerry May, who I believed lived in Columbia. Scenes from Triadelphia Resevoir, Green Ridge State Park. Mystical types will enjoy, others probably not. Gerry was (he died a year ago) a nationally known writer with about a dozen books published over the last 20 years.
3. The Secret Message of Jesus-- by a nearby pastor in Burtonsville, one of Time's 25 most influential Evangelical pastors, as well. Has been pushing back against conservative Evangelicals, ala Andrew Sullivan in some ways.
4. Fairways of Life-- like Chicken Soup for the Soul but with a focus on golf.

Hayduke said...

Wow. I think my library and christmas lists just got a little longer. Thanks for all the recommendations!

Hayduke said...

David: State of Fear was interesting and exciting, as most good fiction thrillers should be, but the science horribly flawed. See here and here

wordbones said...

If you liked Bonfire of the Vanities you would probably enjoy "A Man In Full" too (aslo by Tom Wolfe).

B. Santos said...


Two quick suggestions which may be obvious:

(for mac scuttlebutt)

Dan Froomkin's "White House Briefing" blog at the Washington Post

Hayduke said...

Bill, I actually read both of those, just not on a daily basis like the others. For Mac stuff I also go to www.appleinsider.com and www.thinksecret.com. I am a shameless fanboy.