Kindling – Part 2

21 Jan

Yesterday, I decided to filter through my Kindle archive and blog about the works I found in there. You can skim that posting to discover my motivation behind this action and to read about some of the books hibernating in the archive. Unfortunately, the post took me too close to the morning hours, and I had to set my computer aside. This post covers the rest of the stories (to paraphrase Paul Harvey).

1. “End Game: Bobby Fischer’s Remarkable Rise and Fall – from America’s Brightest Prodigy to the Edge of Madness” by Frank Brady – When I was a kid, I was fascinated by Bobby Fischer. However, it wasn’t the chess. It was the fact that he disappeared. For some reason, I liked the people who fell off the face of the earth, such as Fischer and Howard Hughes. I started this book hoping that it would shed some light on that part of his life. To my dismay, it skimmed over the “mystery” because there was none. People knew where he was. He didn’t disappear. He just stopped playing chess. Despite that disappointment, this is an interesting journey into a mind that is slowly going mad. At the end, I thought I was crazy.

2. “Holy Blood, Holy Grail” by Michael Baigent, Richard Leigh and Henry Lincoln – Who doesn’t like a good conspiracy? And this is the king daddy of them all. Get that – king daddy…Jesus had a kid. Yeah, kinda corny I suppose. Anyway, this is the book that inspired “The Da Vinci Code”. The writers delve into all sorts of history to come up with the theory of a holy bloodline that continues to flow. It is terribly written and terribly researched. But, that isn’t the point. If you don’t believe man landed on the moon and believe the world is going to end on December 21, 2012, then this is the book for you. I love conspiracies, so I loved the read.

3. “The Hunger Games” and “Mockingjay” by Suzanne Collins – I read the physical version of the other book. I reckon that grown men shouldn’t be reading YA novels about young girls. However, this young girl kicks ass. Almost everybody knows about this series, so I won’t go into a big explanation. It’s super cool, and I hope the movies are super cooler.

4. “Robopocalypse” by Daniel Wilson – It’s been done more than once. “I, Robot”. “Maximum Overdrive”. Machines come to life and take over the world. We seem to fear a takeover by the things that we believe we control. Machines and animals in particular. However, this is a great book that takes us around the world as survivors try to fight back. Despite their struggle, I can’t help but like the machine that is controlling the entire process. It accomplished where numerous humans have failed. It conquered the world.

5. “World War Z” by Max Brooks – Zombies are misunderstood. When did voodoo get taken out of the zombie story and disease take its place? Of all the zombie books, this one is my favorite because it reads like a real history. Interviews such as this have been done by real researchers talking to real veterans, and the stories are similar to reality. Well, except for the enemy that just won’t die. I can’t say enough about this book. It spans the globe and traces the history of a war that seemed impossible to win. It is becoming a movie, but I can’t see how they can fit this into a two-hour time slot. It will be interesting to watch, but I think the movie in my mind will have to suffice.

6. “When Pride Still Mattered: A Life of Vince Lombardi” by David Maraniss – In history, we tend to view the participants as two-dimensional beings. Good or bad. Hero or villain. Strong or weak. As the years pass, their humanity turns into statues of stone or metal. Vince Lombardi provides the perfect example. He is a winner – the greatest football coach ever. The Super Bowl trophy is named after him. This biography goes past the images and words of NFL Films to show a man who had fears, doubts and problems at home. He was a great coach but a terrible father. He was a saint but a tyrant. In short, he was human.

There you have it. That cleans out my digital archive. As it turns out, this was a lot easier than loading boxes with hundreds of pounds of books. Now, I just have to start reading the long list of books that I haven’t gotten to yet.

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3 Responses to “Kindling – Part 2”

  1. booksnob January 22, 2012 at 03:50 #

    World War Z is one of my all-time favourites. ALL-TIME.

    Also, what if I someone believes man has walked on the moon, but not between 1969 and 1972? (I just made a cringey face awaiting your response.)

    • Tennessean-Historian-Blogger January 22, 2012 at 04:51 #

      World War Z was awesome. There is no way they can make a movie that lives up to the books. When I finished it was like the war really happened. But, my favorite zombies were the ones on the bottom of the ocean.

      Hmmm. Not between 1969 and 1972 you say. When would it have happened then? One of the other history teachers has a class on conspiracy theories this semester. I wish I could sit in on it.

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