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Leo’s Books

Wednesday, 12 September 2007, 12:59 pm
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Ten books picked at random from my shelves – press refresh to see more…


Rating: 5
Title: Shadow Divers: The True Adventure of Two Americans Who Risked Everything to Solve One of the Last Mysteries of World War II
Author: Robert Kurson

The amazing true story of a pair deep sea divers and a hitherto unknown sunken German U-Boat they discover. Lot’s of interesting information about this crazy hobby. Dramatic, hair-raising, and moving. You won’t be able to stop listening to the audio version.

Audible Version


Rating: 5
Title: The Commodore (Aubrey-Maturin Series)
Author: Patrick O\’Brian

The 17th in Patrick O’Brian’s Aubrey-Maturin series, it’s the tale of 19th century British naval captain (now Commodore) Jack Aubrey and his particular friend (and spy) Dr. Maturin. Read them in order starting with Master and Commander, and if you listen to them make sure to get the Patrick Tull versions. You’ll practically smell the sea air and feel the grapeshot whizzing by you.

Audible Version


Rating: 5
Title: Eat to Live: The Revolutionary Formula for Fast and Sustained Weight Loss
Author: Joel Fuhrman

I’ve been working out for years, the last two with a trainer, but I never have been able to make any headway with my weight. This book is the first I’ve read that really makes sense about nutrition. The principal is simple: maximize the nutritional density of your food. Avoid empty calories. That means lots of fruit and vegetables, and so far it’s been easy and delicious. Everyone should read this.


Rating: 4
Title: Getting Things Done: The Art of Stress-Free Productivity
Author: David Allen

Finally a system that really works. Techies really love this system because you can find all sorts of programs and/or hardware that supports it, but the core of the system is really dead simple. Remove the stress from your life by creating a reliable place you can store your to-do items so you don’t have to think about them any more.

Audible Version


Rating: 5
Title: Dirk Gently’s Holistic Detective Agency
Author: Douglas Adams

A TWiT recommendation by Andy Ihnatko. The Audible version is the BBC dramatization. Andy says this is a must listen, even before Hitchiker’s Guide to the Galaxy

Audible Version


Rating: 5
Title: Fallen Dragon
Author: Peter F. Hamilton

Steve Gibson turned me on to Peter Hamilton’s work – it’s classic hard sci-fi with excellent writing, strong characterizations, and detailed and imaginative worlds. We both agree this is his best work, but they’re all worth reading.


Rating: 4
Title: Telecosm: The World After Bandwidth Abundance
Author: George Gilder

Seven years old and still worth reading – the story of fiber and the coming telecom revolution. This is Gilder’s follow-up to Microcosm, the story of the microprocessor revolution, also a must read.


Rating: 4
Title: Blood and Gold (Vampire Chronicles)
Author: Anne Rice

I’ve read all the Vampire Chronicles novels and really love Rice’s style. This is Marius’s story, told entirely in flashback. There’s not as much action as in some of the earlier stories, but it’s well worth listening to (or reading if you must).

Audible Version


Rating: 4
Title: Manifold: Time
Author: Stephen Baxter

I love Stephen Baxter’s hard sci-fi books. The Manifold Trilogy addresses the Fermi Paradox in three different ways, each starring entrepreneur adventurer Reid Malenfant. Fermi’s Paradox, in short, is that given the size of the galaxy there must be other sentient beings, lots of ‘em, but WHERE ARE THEY?? In Manifold: Space we learn they’re everywhere, if you just know where to look. In Manifold: Time Malenfant sends a gen-enged squid to investigate a near-Earth object with surprising results. I can’t wait to read Manifold: Origin. Baxter’s Evolution, Coalescent, and Ring are also great reads. Big ideas and big science.


Rating: 4
Title: Finding Meaning in the Second Half of Life: How to Finally, Really Grow Up
Author: James Hollis

What happens when you no longer need to win the approval of parents, spouses, family, and friends? You can begin to live life for yourself. Hollis is a Jungian analyst who writes with insight and clarity. It’s thought-provoking stuff that needs time to digest but it’s well worth the effort for those of us over 40.