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January 15, 2012

Sunday Book Thread

I made the mistake of taking some time off around the holidays, so the new year mainly brought an enormous backlog of work to catch up on. Thus any time I have for reading must be taken in brief snatches: ten minutes here, half an hour there. This kind of fragmented reading experience is made somewhat easier in this age of the e-reader; I take my (e-ink) Kindle with me where ever I go, so I can always read a few pages when I have a bit of free time.

My reading over the past couple of weeks has been dedicated mainly to clearing out my enormous backlog of bought-but-unread books. Currently I'm still scaling the mountain of Paul Rahe's Republics Ancient and Modern, but when that gets too heavy I go back to Vernor Vinge's Children of the Sky. I also bought Nelson and Winter's An Evolutionary Theory of Economic Change on the recommendation of a friend -- I've heard people mention this book favorably when compared to Mises' Human Action, so I'm anxious to get into it.

Barnes and Noble, pretty much the last man standing in the large bookseller space, has been experiencing some tough times lately. I hate to say it, but I'd be surprised to see them survive in their current form for more than a year or two. It's not just the technology changes either as customers move to on-demand digital entertainment -- it's B&N's lack of diversification. Amazon can make up any losses they incur in their book division by selling more blenders or hunting boots or canoes; B&N doesn't have that luxury. And B&N has a massive physical retail infrastructure to maintain that Amazon does not have. This is not necessarily a liability -- the world still has plenty of readers who prefer to handle, consider, and buy books in person -- but this market is getting smaller with every year that goes by.

On a lighter note, I have had a great response from Moron authors (and wives/husbands/friends of same) who have been sending me links to Moron-written stuff. Check out the links below, and if you decide to buy, use the special Ace O' Spades Amazon storefront, because then Ace can wet his beak a little bit at no extra cost to you. See below the fold for details.

NOTE: Send all recommendations to aoshqbookthread AT gmail DOT com.

Brian Erb sends a book written by his mother, On The Western Trails: The Overland Diaries of Washington Peck.

Robert Zimmerman sends Leaving Earth: Space Stations, Rival Superpowers, and the Quest for Interplanetary Travel.

Ric Locke sends a science fiction novel called Temporary Duty (Kindle Edition).

Brian Noggle sends the novel John Donnelly's Gold.

Peter Campbell sends a book he co-authored with Sam Coval: A Critique of the Liberal Idea of a Person: The Contradiction Within Equalitarian Ethical Theory.

Mark Haugen sends his novel Joshua's Ladder.

Heather sends a book written by her friend William Topek, a detective novel called Shadow of a Distant Morning.

OgreGunner sends a book written by his mom: TimeSavor Coaching: A Positive Psychology Approach to ADHD.

Stan Lence sends a link to his wife Julie's books on Amazon.

Rob Spahr sends a link to his four-part "The Adventures of Torto" series.

C. S. Rock sends a link to his novel Stygian Depths.

George Milonas sends his novel The Warrior of God.

F. Kim O'Neill sends a book that ought to appeal to the Moron Horde: Ultimate Guide to Surviving a Zombie Apocalypse.

Rory Miller sends his novel about American soccer called Free Kicks.

John Henry sends his book Machinery Matters: John Henry on Packaging, Machinery, Troubleshooting.

Arkay sends a novel written by his friend Rodney L. Smith called Scout Force.

Callan Primer sends her novel A Wind out of Indigo.

Kathy Zeller recommends the Scottish Immortal series by Alexis McNeil. In her words: "Anyone looking for good Scottish Immortal series with wicked, hawt Scots read the Immortal series by Alexis McNeil. Good stuff with a plot!" I'd think that wicked hawt would be a good selling-point.

E. N. Gallant sends his short novel 69.

If I didn't mention your book and you've already sent me a link, don't fret: I'm trying to clear the massive end-of-year backlog and will get to your link soon. Keep sending in those recommendations!

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posted by Monty at 09:23 AM

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