Books offer an escape from the mundane. With a turn of the page, we can soar on dragon's wings, solve mysteries alongside intrepid detectives, or lose ourselves in the lyrical beauty of a forgotten era. They grant us temporary residence in worlds both familiar and fantastical, allowing us to experience life through countless lenses, expanding our horizons and enriching our understanding of the human experience.
📕 Andrew Torba (2022) Christian Nationalism - a crazy alt-right rant
📕 A. S. Byatt (1990) Possession - total shit.
📕 Ian Rankin (1987) Knots and Crosses - didn't suck
📕👎 Shari Lapena (2018) An Unwanted Guest - total shit
📕👎 Clare Mackintosh (2017) I See You – By the time I was working my way towards the end of this story. I was thinking... was there anything interesting in this story? Could a good writer have made it actually interesting, or was it destined to be a shit story if anyone wrote it?
📕🤷 Lucy Foley (2021) The Hunting Party – Lots of folks talking about drinking too much, even though they don't drink. And the ladies asking themselves why don't people like me, and why their friends like other friends better than them. And, of course. lots of sex fantasizing. The book seems to be written for insecure 16-18 kids. But... not as badly written as the prior book on this list. Also, both Foley books I've ready use the same non-linear narrative device.
📕👎 Ruth Ware (2016) The Death of Mrs. Westaway – In this story the main character behaves like a 7 year old, while in the story I sense she is over 20. She doesn't seem be able to do simple things like ask for train fare and instead shows up at a train station with no money. Over and over she acts in a child like manor. The reality is the writer is trying to make everything dramatic. She not a very good writer, unable to write believable characters. I'm going to have to figure out how to get Google Bard to stop recommending mysteries with dopey women main characters.
📕🤷 Wendy Walker (2018) The Night Before – both women in this book are annoying, neurotic, filled with self hatred & guilt. The sister, Laura, is the queen of jumping from one wrong conclusion to another. you would think after being wrong so many times she would shut up and calm down. But, not... she jumps from one impulsive action to another all the way to the end of the book, and everyone of her jumps is wrong.
📕 Donald Fagen (2013) Eminent Hipsters – Fagen presents the "eminent hipsters" who spoke to him as he was growing up in a bland New Jersey suburb in the early 1960s; his years at Bard College, where he first met his musical partner Walter Becker; and the agonies and ecstasies of a recent cross-country tour with Michael McDonald and Boz Scaggs.
📕 Ray Kurzweil (1999) The Age of Spiritual Machines – A non-fiction book by inventor and futurist Ray Kurzweil about artificial intelligence and the future course of humanity. In the book Kurzweil outlines his vision for how technology will progress during the 21st century.
📕 Walter Isaacson (2023) Elon Musk – From the author of Steve Jobs and other bestselling biographies, this is the astonishingly intimate story of the most fascinating and controversial innovator of our era—a rule-breaking visionary who helped to lead the world into the era of electric vehicles, private space exploration, and artificial intelligence. Oh, and took over Twitter.
📚 Claudia Pineiro (2007) Elena Knows – Finished part 1. Elena is an annoying, angry, unhappy, narcissistic women. It's hard to listen to the story so far. Very slow moving. So far, Elena's daughter was found hung in the church bell tower, and Elena is the only one who does not believe it's a suicide. Aside from that, we learn that Elena is angry, at pretty much everyone and everything, and has isolated herself from everyone in the community. In part 2, we learn Elena's daughter, Rita, is also a anti-social pain in the ass, that makes everyone's life difficult. As I was listening to part 2, I found I was happy Rita was murdered, and started hoping someone might murder the mother. Part 3 ends up being horrible. It turns out this is not a "mystery" as advertised, ie, Christie or Doyle. It's a leftist propaganda piece. It turns out Rita simply killed herself because she didn't want to deal with taking care of her mother as the Alzheimers progresses. This is used and tied in with a incident that gets revealed in flashback in part three in which 20 years ago Rita & Elena had prevented a lady they met on the street from getting an abortion, and that lady ended up having an unhappy life with her husband and child. It's not a mystery story, it's a leftist screed about patriarchal and religious society that the author feels have no business creating a world where folks are discouraged from having abortions. This book will probably win an award from some idiotic leftist group, but, I recommend you give it a miss.
📚 R.F. Kuang (2022) Babel - this book slowly morphed into a super woke, anti-western civilization political rant. It became very hard to read (or in my case, even listen to) Had to give up in Chapter 23.