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August 14, 2011

Sunday Book Thread

The big publishing news of the past week is probably the release of Mark Steyn's After America, which our own ArthurK has been blogging. Given the various catastrophes that befell the West last week -- a credit downgrade, riots in England, more financial chaos in Europe -- I wonder if Steyn's PR people maybe got a little overzealous in their advance prep for the book. I've picked the book up, but haven't read it yet.

Apart from Steyn and the redoubtable Theodore Dalrymple, I generally don't read the socio/cultural type books: I find all that ideological axe-grinding tedious in the hands of lesser authors. (It's one reason I've never cared four Coulter or Ingraham's stuff.) But I made an exception for David Mamet's The Secret Knowledge: On the Dismantling of American Culture. Mamet is another Hollywood icon who has moved from the political Left to Right over the years, and this book is his broadside against the Leftist takeover of popular culture. I'm looking forward to reading this one -- Mamet is a splendid essayist in addition to his talents as playwright, screenwriter, and director.

I picked up both of the above books in their Kindle editions. I still have concerns about the DRM restrictions of books over the long term, but the convenience factor is so wonderful that it offsets any doubts I may have. I still buy the occasional book in paper -- out-of-print books, large-format books, books with a lot of photos and/or maps -- but for most reading matter these days I prefer the Kindle. (You can now buy a Kindle for $114 if you're willing to look at some ads before reading your book. If you don't like ads, you can pay an extra $20 to get the ad-free version. And you can download Kindle software for almost any device you can think of -- PC's, iPhones, and Android phones.)

What's everyone else reading?

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posted by Monty at 10:05 AM

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