Saturday, March 28, 2015


Finished Sa 3/28/15

 The final push from 3am to 5am early Saturday morning

The book ends as Michael Corleone takes the reigns as the most influential Don in the US

I loved it from start to finish, and will order the film from Netflix later this week.

Entry at wikipedia-

Monday, March 23, 2015


March 2015 selection Classic Book Club


Read about 400 pages, then skimmed  to the end. The Nicole Kidman/John Malkovich film directed by Jane Campion was most helpful.

Nice discussion and the group enjoyed the novel. I liked some of the ideas-

Isabel Archer is given a fortune by her cousin Ralph to keep her from marrying for money, but the quasi-evil Gilbert Osmond marries her for the loot.

The Europeans in the novel were all American expatriates

Isabel spurns a better marriage proposal because she is true to her promise of marriage and feels that her step child needs her more than hypothetical freedom

MRS. HEMINGWAY by Naomi Wood

Finished Mo 3/23/15

March 2015 selection Contemporary Book Club

Told in four sections with the points of view of the four wives.

Hadley Richardson

Pauline Pfeiffer

Martha Gellhorn

Mary Welsh

An easy and entertaining read, and offers an informative insight into the lives of a famous author and his four loves.

Hemingway's entry on wikipedia-

Thursday, March 19, 2015

UBIK by Philip K. Dick

Finished Th 3/19/15

Not the first time with this fave, but each time I glean something else.

This time it struck me more of a Horror novel that just happens to be written in 1969 and set in the 'far off future world' of 1992.

Precogs and telepaths have evolved, but also people who are able to block these abilities.

Set in The North American Confederacy

Glen Runciter's prudence organization, Runciter Associates, is asked to 'disinfect' a company that has been psychically compromised on the moon. He takes twelve of his finest people, including Joe Chip, and they all appear to be blown up and killed after initialing the contact.

Pat Conley, who works for Runciter, has the ability to go back in time, but why doesn't she do something to stop the attack?

Why is the 'half-life' world of the Runciter staff regressing and going back to the year 1939?

What is Ubik and why does it help revive, but only for a small amount of time?

Who is Jory and why did Ela Runciter meet up with him while she was in the half-life state? Is Jory a representation of the devil or evil...perpetually engaged in trying to wear down the power of good?

Why is Joe Chip's face on the coins at the end, and, for that matter, why was Glen Runciter's face on the coins in the first place?

A very strange and thought inspiring novel, and clearly like nothing else.

Link to wikipedia-

Saturday, March 14, 2015

THE WITNESS by W.E.B. Griffin

Finished  Fr 3/13/15

Author's wikipedia entry-

This is one of my paperbacks and the author is know for his series 'Brotherhood of War'. After scanning his page on Wikipedia I see that he has many collections that concern the armed forces, the secret service, and police procedurals. This novel is set in the late 70's in the city of Philadelphia.

Major Plots-

Goldblatt's Furniture store is robbed by a group of Blacks claiming to be members of The Islamic Revolutionary Army. The nightwatchman is killed and only one witness will testify.

Officer Mathew Payne was with a newspaper reporter covering the roundup of the suspects of the furniture store robbery. They are attacked by one of the militants and Payne returns fire and kills the man.

Mathew Payne is very rich. He is a cop, although his family is against the decision because several member of the family have been killed in the line of duty.

The novel concerns the internal politics of the various agencies within the Philadelphia police department.

Payne is also involved with the wife of one of the assistant district attorneys. This man wants to become mayor and is kind of a sleaze.

This is not a bad novel, and if Police Procedural is your thing, this is the book for you. I'd definitely try another by this author, and I would also give his military books a shot.

(When I was at the YMCA a retired officer from The Illinois National Guard noticed that I was reading this book and he said that he loved everything that this author has written). I was surprised to see this man at the Y since he has worked out at Fit Club for many years. He was probably surprised to see me as well)

Sunday, March 1, 2015


Finished Su 3/1/15

This is from my collection and according to the flyleaf I paid $25 on Tu 8/26/97 at Barnes and Noble, and I never read it!

However, it's well worth reading.
The premise is that the Folk Movement of the early 60's maintained a true love for the music and an almost worshipful devotion to authenticity. As popular tastes gravitated to Rock, it became a more commercial medium, and less motivated by Art.

The managers, agents, and producers in the book are more or less responsible for this progression.

Ray Riepen- Boston lawyer who became the first Rock mogul as owner of the Boston Tea Party night club. ULTIMATE SPINACH BEACON STREET STATION EDEN'S CHILDREN- The Bosstown Sound

Albert Grossman- Superstar manager to Dylan

Paul Rothchild- Doors and Janis Joplin

Frank Barsalona- managed the tour bookings to become Rock Kingpin

Mike Appel- Discovered Springsteen, but couldn't pick a winner if his life depended on it

Jon Landau- Record producer to MC5 and Bruce Springsteen. Ultimate 'Power Behind The Throne'.

David Geffen- Non-musician who wanted the glamour of Hollywood. Asylum Records. Multi-multi Millionaire.
Neil Young is the rock star who truly was able to do as he wished. Geffen sues him to 'protect him from himself'.
Dee Anthony- Manager to Humble Pie and Peter Frampton. He pretty much sucked both acts dry.

PEANUT BUTTER CONSPIRACY, LOTHAR AND THE HAND PEOPLE- Second stringers from the west coast.

The 'notes' and 'index' at the end of the book provide an excellent recap of the book's major points.