Selected short reviews.
This collection of short stories is absolutely heartbreaking. I found myself identifying with the characters in strange and elliptical ways. Alexie is a scholar of the collective unconscious and all of its mystical sorrows.
McCarthy helps me understand the world. He inspires me to be a better writer. And he always tells a damn good story.
Having practiced mashing, waterfall, scrum, kanban, and scrumban - I’m pretty sure this is the least worst way to build software as a team.
Loved every word.
An amazingly satisfying read. I’ve pondered the mysteries of this album for most of my life. Weidenbaum’s analysis and reflections were an absolute joy.
What lies beneath our snap judgments? What circumstances cloud our intuition? Why does more information not necessarily correllate with better decisions? Blink was a satisfying journey to answering these questions.
Quiet covers the introvert/extrovert dichotomy and the values our culture place on each. Amazingly, this book helped me reconnect with my true self. I’m super introverted, but due to my career I’m often pressured to pass for an extrovert. Here’s to structuring my life with more solitude.
This has been on my reading list for almost 15 years! Most of the action takes place in the midwest at (or fictitiously around) places I’ve frequented. I’m a sucker for Americana, road trips, and the mythic so this checked all the boxes. Highly recommended.
So this book was an absolute treasure. Katie’s view is that suffering comes from the stories we have about our situations - not the situations themselves. By inquiring and probing these thoughts we can begin to unravel them. I highly recommend this book to anyone looking to grow and heal.
Having just joined the ranks of commuter spouses ourselves, this line was especially resonant: “In sum, commuter spouses are at the crux of a fundamental conflict between traditional family structure, changing gender roles, and the structure and meaning of postindustrial professional work.”
Being teased for my existential dispositions my entire non-adolescent life, I’ve decided to go all in and learn what the school of thought is really about. This book covers a lot of ground: from anxiety to bad faith, from sexuality to the body. I was expecially comforted to learn about Heidegger’s “Dasein” and Sarte’s “the Nasuea” - both of which concepts I’ve tried to name myself.
A physicist from a utopian-anarchist society leaves his world for a capitalist one. The protagonist’s occupation coupled with alternating a present-flashback chapter structure had me expecting some time-travel twist at the end. When it didn’t happen I felt like I missed the forest for the trees.
I enjoyed A Call for the Dead more but I am eager to read the next Smiley mystery.
An adroit, clear-eyed critique of our current context. Bioregionalism, manifest dismantling, birdwatching. Less of a “How to” and more of a “Why to”.
Reread. Most self-help books I respond well to include themes of radical responsibility and acceptance of mortaility and this has both in spades!
Candid & practical, funny & inspiring. SK loves his craft and it’s as contagious as Captain Trips.
After Manson’s previous book, I had great expectations for this one. It introduced me the concept of Amor Fati which is quite lovely, but other than that it reads as a somewhat hysterical plea of fealty to the AI who will run the singularity.
I found this to be highly sensationalized and conjectural. There is probably something here, but I’m not ready to bite.
In a stunning turn of events the world “psychedelic” was not mentioned once in this book! Instead we follow the patchworked travels of matsutake mushrooms as they journey from Orgeonian forests through supply chains and into Japanese restaraunts. Salvage capitalism, assemblages, patchwork. My favorite non-fiction book of the year.
Shanghai is a time machine… or something.
Holy shit. I hope this enters the canon of Neuromancer, Snow Crash, etc. There is an urgency and poetry to Maughan’s prose that feels just perfect. I adore all the references to hip-hop culture, jungle, and artists. I look forward to re-reading this one over and over.
A satisfying, imaginative, and fun conclusion to The Bridge Trilogy.
A poetic look at how we as a culture became aware of the very concept of time travel. Gleik weaves literature, scientific discoveries, and technological advancements together in a joyful ode to my favorite SF trope.
The book is divided into thematic sections, each in chronological order. At the end of each section, I found myself overcome with a certain sorrow in knowing this is all there ever will be. I know I will refer to the final section on Acid Communism for years to come. RIP.
Fisher’s thesis sketches out a “Gothic Materialism” framework. I enjoyed the reading quite a bit, though lacked the academic context to understand most of it. Hardcopy via exmilitary.
A fractalized fever dream SF thriller. Turtles all the way down…
Airpots, gas stations, Starbucks… these are non-places. Meshes of code, branding, and consumerism. What does spending more and more of our time here mean for culture?
If the 20th century heard us sketch out the extreme borders of what music is (think Cage, Reich, later Autechre), then 21st century will be about mapping the inner jungles.
What if, in our collective efforts to be faster, more accurate, and more efficient we’ve only made things worse? What if we are in a New Dark Age and don’t even realize it?
A pragmatists approach to understanding our place in the universe through the lens of poetic naturalism.
A staggering (and occasionally long-winded) work of imagination and genius. Hard SF for the 21st century.
No other book has ever haunted me like this one. It is tragic, bleak, and horrifying. McCarthy’s prose is sublime.
A bunch of mean & petty people doing mean & petty things to each other. I had a hard time enjoying this one. Some cool concepts like social currency and flash-baking.
Near-future “biopunk” adventure playing with complex ethical topics such as human-AI love, debt/slavery, addiction, and chains of responsibility in pharmaceutical trials.
A chillingly plausible near-future action thriller given our current time-line trajectory. One of the protagonists seemed to have superpowers for some reason.
A vision of what a post-scarcity future run by hackers could look like. Bonus points for technically accurate version control systems and networking technology.
Not as sweeping as his other books, but just as insightful.
This book rewired my perception of reality. Is neoliberalism really the terminus of human society?
Some of my favorite fiction analyzed by my favorite thinker.
Reflections on our hyper-connected world from the person who helped us imagine it.
Required reading for all artists and creators. I’ve lost count of how many friends I’ve given or recommended this one to.
Borges is a master of recursion, suggestion, minimalism. A man out of time.
He’s done it again. Perhaps the most plausible form of time travel yet imagined.