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  1. @Boothjan, thanks for that. I’ll try and get through Levi before I go. I’ve been to Krakow and Auschwitz before but went there without any literary inspiration so thought I’d make the effort this time. Krakow is as delightful as Auschwitz is humbling.
  2. 4. The Future Starts Here by John Higgs. This was a great read. Cultural historian looks at what the future is likely to bring, without the shock, fear and bluster that many writers bring to this topic. Discussion of AI, VR, Elon Musk, whether humanity is better heading off to Mars or under the sea, how education/employment/engagement are all changing with technology etc. He’s really talented at offering a new slant on topics you already had some awareness of and his insights are refreshing. 5. Man’s Search for Reason by Viktor E. Frankl. I’m off to Krakow and Auchswitz next month and wanted to read an account of the place prior to my visit. The first half of the book is a fairly philosophical account of the author’s experience of being a prisoner there and why he feels he survived when so many didn’t. The second half is his views on the psychology of survival and his theory called Logotherapy. Whilst the theory and the writing are interesting in themselves, it did very little for me. As a result, I thought the first half was a powerful and extraordinary piece of writing but felt the second half was dull in comparison.
  3. Rick McCrank? Sounds like a Glaswegian chat-up line. Nonetheless, this sounds great. If you’re interested in this type of urban exploration Requiem for Detroit is majestic.
  4. Have you read Vicious by her? Different genre of fiction but equally enjoyable.
  5. I think the criticism is fair. Think the best way to describe it was that I found it quite an awkward book. I liked the unrelenting grimness and real world portent. North is quite an interesting modern writer, she has a pretty diverse ouevre. From what I’ve read of her work, she has some really interesting ideas but doesn’t have the talent to quite squeeze all the goodness out of them.
  6. 3. The Descent of Man by Grayson Perry. I really like Grayson Perry. Not so keen on his artwork but as a human he's a pretty decent one. This is a book about the future of masculinity and the issues of toxic masculinity. As a father of two boys there was some engaging views on parenthood and what fathers expect (fairly and unfairly) of their sons. He addresses his own upbringing and how he found himself drawn to becoming a transvestite whilst having an overbearing and violent father figure. If you watched his documentary series on Channel 4 (the age of man?) then this covers a lot of the old ground but its informative and important. Recommended, although don't go expecting anything particularly revolutionary or overly innovative.
  7. Bournemouth looked utterly bereft of ideas all game, didn't seem to be a single player with any fight and against a Deeney-Led Watford, they were always going to lose. Despite his dodgy past, latter-day Deeney is up there with my favourite characters in the Premiership. He must be a bloody nightmare to play against.
  8. Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro is £1.19 today. Romesh’s autobiography is 99p too.
  9. Still available. Send me your address and I’ll pop it in the post.
  10. The ending of Catastrophe was superb; a series that finished at just the right time. Great choice of song as well to add to the emotion of it all. One of my favourite TV moments.
  11. We don’t have Ndidi, so a rather alien formation for us. Think this will be a cagey affair.
  12. Popped it in the For free thread but I have a new copy of this going spare if anyone wants it? Was bought for me as a Xmas pressie but had already read it.
  13. 2. Recursion by Blake Crouch. Read a few of Crouch's books previously, including the Wayward Pines series. Don't really rate him that much which might beg the question as to why I've read another one of his books. I do think the general ideas of his books are intriguing but the execution is always somewhat lacking. Also find that the start of the books are really intriguing but once you get to the major reveal, it all start crashing down. This book was a bit different, start and end were decent enough but it really sagged in the middle. It's a novel about memory, time-travel and the potential implications of doing so. Seen a few reviews classify it as hard sci-fi, but it's not. There is some interesting science in there but it's fairly simply explained. It's ideal holiday reading as it's the type of book you'll want to rattle through. Popcorn reading basically. Next: continuing to savour a chapter of Stranger Than We Can Imagine by John Higgs every evening. And Descent of Man by Grayson Perry.
  14. Stopharage

    Cricket Thread

    Don’t think we’ll lose it but the pitch doesn’t seem to be playing up as expected before the test began. Root’s bowling to get a spawny wicket when all looks lost to trigger an England-esque batting collapse.
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